Friday, November 10, 2017

Just because

With gratitude to an anonymous friend who brought Robert Desnos to my attention today through an article by Susan Griffin which included the following:

"Like artistic and literary movements, social movements are driven by imagination. I am not speaking here only of the songs and poems and paintings that have always been part of movements for political and social change, but of the movements themselves, their political ideas and forms of protest. Every important social movement reconfigures the world in the imagination. What was obscure comes forward, lies are revealed, memory shaken, new delineations drawn over the old maps: it is from this new way of seeing the present that hope for the future emerges."

Le pélican

Le capitaine Jonathan,
Étant âgé de dix-huit ans,
Capture un jour un pélican
Dans une île d'Extrême-Orient.
Le pélican de Jonathan,
Au matin pond un œuf tout blanc
Et il en sort un pélican
Lui ressemblant étonnamment.
Et ce deuxième pélican
Pond, à son tour, un œuf tout blanc
D'où sort, inévitablement,
Un autre qui en fait autant. 
Cela peut durer pendant très longtemps
Si l'on ne fait pas d'omelette avant.

The Pelican

Captain Jonathan
Being eighteen years old
Captures a pelican one day
In a Far-Eastern island.
Jonathan's pelican
lays an all-white egg
from which emerges a pelican
Which looks just like the first.
And this second pelican
Also lays an all-white egg
from which emerges, inevitably
Another, who does the same.
This can last a very long time
Unless we make an omelet.


Colette said...

I love thinking of social movements in this way - as a creative process. Certainly a lot of creative energy and imagination is involved.

Anonymous said...

That is a great quote. Had I come across it, I too would've blogged it!