|May 21, 2013|
by Tammy Ho Lai-Ming
It was a kind of thatched hut. Outside,
cars whisked past on the never-busy road.
Or perhaps it was not a hut but a house made of wood.
Small, mean. Maybe it was stone?
I cannot rebuild that place with my brick words;
there are no pictures left to verify my description.
I was not yet three, only half conscious of space and clocks.
And my twin sisters, younger than me,
looked like rude boys, wore second-hand pyjamas.
One time, they played with the yolks of broken eggs,
calligraphed on the cement floor. Of that we have a picture.
There is no trace of me in that familiar frame,
but I was convinced that I must be there somewhere,
in that same room. For many years, I imagined myself
standing just behind a cupboard or a broom,
looking on adoringly at my sisters and their toys:
shells, scraps of indistinguishable paper, dust balls.
Later I was told that my too young mother, who had had
three by twenty-two, couldn’t handle us all under one roof
and had sent me to a village on the Mainland.
I was not present when that picture was taken.
About the Author:
Tammy Ho Lai-Ming is a Hong Kong-born writer currently based in the UK. She is a founding co-editor of Cha: An Asian Literary Journal and an editor of the London-based Fleeting Magazine and the academic journal Victorian Network. She edited Hong Kong U Writing: An Anthology in 2006 and co-edited Love and Lust in 2008. Her own work has been widely published in print and online and she has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize three times and the Forward Prize. She is finishing her PhD thesis on Neo-Victorian fiction at King’s College London.
Inherent Vice’s Two Directions
The jokes certainly strike one as sophomoric and the latter one as clichéd, further below Pynchon’s intelligence than one would like to think he would stoop, at least in print. Discounting them and moving on, or throwing the book across the room as Parker half implies we should do, however, would be to lose sight of “that high magic to low puns”.
Auden, Larkin and Love
I was prompted to revisit these ancient questions anew by a long footnote about a single line in the new Complete Poems edition of Philip Larkin’s poetry. The footnote refers to “An Arundel Tomb” contains a provocative remark about that the poem’s celebrated, controversial, closing line, the one about the true nature of immortality: “What will survive of us is love.”
Plato, Our Comrade?
Not surprisingly, there have already been critics of Badiou’s translation. The first is that his translation breaks the formal rules of translation to such a degree that the original meaning of the text has lost its significance. But this critique is inadequate at face value because Badiou’s hyper-translation is forthright in its intention of taking Plato’s concepts and modifying them into his own lexicon.
You may also like :
The hour changes time into other forms of desire. A woman needs no bra in summer. A kiss after a fuck. A way to depart. She spends her entire life preparing to leave, play with verbs and nouns and syllables but there is no language for what we can’t give. Lovemaking isn’t about love; it’s about making a noise or a rhythm, arranging a life, giving an order, the way we weep on a wish to wash it away.