Wednesday, May 18, 2011

" ... Out of kindness comes redness

and out of rudeness comes rapid same question, out of an eye comes research, out of selection comes painful cattle ...."  (from "A Box" from Objects, from Tender Buttons, by Gertrude Stein).

Can a sketch reveal Stein's thoughts, here? The actual sensory details in this passage are: "redness," an "eye," "selection" (perhaps, if it is a physical culling), and ... "cattle."  Words having to do with behavior include "kindness," "rudeness," "question[ing],"  "research," and (possibly) "selection."  The only descriptive words are the red in "redness" and "painful." So the words that overlap in all the categories? "Selection," "redness," "painful."  The pieces in Tender Buttons are sometimes about wanting things that are not accessible ... or things being no longer what they seem ... this process, in this short excerpt, is a painful,  red, selection?  I have drawn peaceful cattle on a hill. But that isn't what Stein had in mind....

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