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rock of ages
April 29, 2011


1 | Given a storial sense of scenic understanding (“showing growth”), the liminality of a scene may imply layers of horizon (or backgrounding), depending on the scale of relevant appreciability: Ephemeral happening may be implicitly (potentially) contained/backgrounded by role-functioning organization, like a theatrical event (including—but my point is scenic—the functionally-specified roles of large organizations, as if an enterprise is a theater or landscape of competitions). In other words, improvised interaction may be contained by a normativity of interpersonal activity. Yet, that (or, especially, the improvised interaction) may be backgrounded relative to the actor by developing lifeworld (careers, families, communities). A scene belongs to a locality belonging to a region belonging to planetary life. There may be a “fate of place” which interaction plays into or desires (implicitly, if not explicitly) to transpose, transform, transgress, or transcend—desiring, in short, a transportation. So much intended drama in art is also (if not basically) about living with the fate of a place (e.g., destining in relationships—an embodied place—in families, organizations, localities, etc) relative to desires for change, growth, development, progress, or evolving (which is the unwitting heart of religious interest). Our storiality can be breathtaking (which any playwright may hope for their work’s showing, I suppose) because we horizoning children are creatures of devo-evo Time.

2 | But storiality isn’t always dramatic in the sense of a “drama” (whose plot points are tensions seeking resolution, dissolution, or transportation). Storiality is itself (dramatic in the original, simple sense of storially-interplaying enactments of characters relative to lives—playing out a play), including dramatic heaviness, yet also adventure, comedy, or enchantment. As they say, the play’s the thing, and scenes play into interplays of the play of life, etc., etc. All the world’s play, Bill, which gives way to any stage of developing. My bias—as anyone has prevailing interest—is potential interdevelopmentality—call it interformativity—as prevailing kinds of interest in play, as if a story of self formation (the genre of Bildungsroman) tropes an evolutionarity of human interest in the horizon of every other story’s potential, as if all Literature could be the extended heartfulness—a pointillistic legacy of traces weaving into a telic cohering—of our evolving.

3 | But I live the days quite inauspiciously. Faced with a given (incipient) interaction scene, I don’t usually take time to silently ask: “OK, what story are we in?” I don’t. Yet, it’s fun to do. Are we in—am I being emplaced into, ensited as—an endeavor to make a fiction prevail as reality? Is another’s apparent interest in others really self aggrandizement? Are we elements of systems management pretending to be caring persons? Is one person’s enthusiasm for another’s story really enchantment with having the other’s attention on oneself? Is an account about someone else really displaced autobiography (as if all the world fits into the stories that one prefers)?

4 | Persons are nonconsciously (i.e., unawareably, unattentively reflecting, unwittingly) writing a scene through sharing with someone an importance which “should” be between them, improvising an implied script through the continuance of interactivity. Nearly any interaction (recorded, thanks to a hidden camera) could be worth commentary (analysis?), so delightful we primates are. Unconsciousness of this—as if there is no implied story—displaces authorship (viewed through replay) outside the admitted horizon, like (to the reader or audience) characters unwittingly in search of their author (which the gods knew already, ancestors would imply), as if there already always is The Story that we characters aren’t privileged to comprehend.

5 | Horizons within horizons, “the” story is relative to the scale of its horizonality. No gods any longer having pre-written our discernible remembrance of cohering time, we now have our narratives of evolution (much of it scientifically horizoned, much of it Literature), narratives of history, stories of lives—journals, diaries, incessant “he said, she said” conversations by phone and sidewalk, or compulsive texting of every moment, as if life is one, unending story (which, I believe, was Joyce’s prevailing, simple point in Finnegan’s Wake—which was apparently not intended for reading).

6 | Rationalization is often less about validity than about peace of mind and self efficacy (which truth and normativity may serve—otherwise marginalized, often not prevailing over the value of self efficacy) as characterlogical scene/drama assay-writing. Case making may be about establishing truth; or it may be a stance-character’s scenario establishment (mostly about self esteeming, dignity, or integrity): the storiality that deserves to prevail. (This is why jurisprudence may be so much about competing narratives, as well as about evidentiary demonstration.)

7 | It might be (I’m unsure) that every interpersonal situation can be understood relative to an implicit/explicit writer-director, participant(s), and observer(s). In-scenic placement poses questions of who’s leading (writing/directing) the scene; who’s collaborating (acting as equal participant); and who’s following (being led or observing)? Out-scenic placement poses the classical condition of drama: What’s the playwright/director intending? What’s going on with on-stage performances (granting a difference between actor and character, such that one may love the disappearance of the difference)? What’s an audience supposed to think (on the other side of the fourth wall)? A 2-level dramatic resonance of ordinary life is (1) its implicature of In-scenic structure and (2) implicature of Out-scenic potential, as if nonconsciousness works like a writer behind each persona; interaction implies storiality; and its narrative could be witnessed in variable ways, like any text of rich meaning whose author is absent.

8 | Yet performance—in theater as in a life—is authentically less about the performing relationship to audience (imputed or not) than about advancing the telic coherence of the performing as if there’s no actor, making character true to self always relative to scenic opportunity (and constraints). Belonging together of character and self (given an imputed difference) in/as the same presencing is integral to the integrity of genuine performance as authentic (selfidentical) character. In authentically (selfidentically) genuine action (performance), the stantiality of character (rolling with a scene, relative to a shared environment) shows its validity of belonging through the temporal and telic cohering of the performance. We see this also in overt theater as the luminous presence of “no” actor in the character (as the actor really becomes the performance).

9 | Yet, the text was written. The absent author made the work. The “absent” actor made the presence. Absent constitutivity is evidenced in the trace, the presence, which was anticipated in writing, re-anticipated in reading, as if writing in reading and reading one’s own horizonality in writing can become entwined in a sub-performative, sub-textual synergy, a kind of eros of entranced Flow.

10 | But analytical susceptibility of storial life authentically enacts itself without deep pretentiousness (as real theatricality betrays its pretense when the Event is over)—which, though, doesn’t have to be without attentive pretense as genuine enjoyment of play. So, I’d Say (i.e., would show at some length), life can seem to be lovely theater as a psychal ecology of genuine roles and characters serving authentic selves and lives, not as supplement to some natural attitude (without differentiations) of common sense, but potentially belonging to every human context (belonging to every context’s potential for enrichment), giving singularity to our pointillistic humanity by way of scenic understanding (in a byWay of outer- and inner-directing of phenomenal time).

11 | We have our scenic roles (largely improvised, in being genuine) that serve our character through shared environments (our organized or organizational character)—multiple characters across environments?—serving a singular, autobiographable self[identity] in a singular life, a living (biotemporal) selfness (Self) somehow in (in some sense) manifold Time.

12 | Given a new day, it’s showtime again, and that can be as honest as reality is conceivable: already always temporal, formative (ultimately selformative, from bioglyphical roots of life through human capabilities of inquirial audacity), altogether shepherding the emergent fate of Earth, ever to be relative to our evolving.