Monday, May 18, 2015


Endymion on Mount Latmos (1879) (John) Atkinson Grimshaw


It is a common experience that a problem difficult at night is resolved in the morning after the committee of sleep has worked on it. - John Steinbeck

Sleep's nocturnal algorithm
Endymion's element

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1. Mythic tales carry image remains and are themselves remainders, burial mounds inscribed with such remains still remaining.

2. Hypnos, God of Sleep, resides in Erebos, the land of eternal darkness, beyond the gates of the rising sun. From here he rises into the sky each night in the train of his goddess mother, Nyx or Night. The Oneiroi, dark-winged spirits of dreams, are often depicted as bat-like creatures. These are his brothers, sons of Night, too. In the form of the spirit of dream, the Oneiroi are given the name, Morpheus and personified in notion. Thanatos, Death, a brother, belongs to this complex as well.

3. Let me begin in such ruins with a Roman-era collection of myths and the account of the one great love story between immortality’s goddess and mortal man. It is based largely on the mythologer and poet Pherecydes of Leros.  His account has perished but he is the one in which this particular telling of the myth whether Rose (Aurora), Eos or Selene.

There are three stories, three lights, three ladies, three lovers but really they are remains of the one story. I am pondering the Roman story of Selene and the shepherd, Endymion, the Greek story of Eos and the Trojan rhapsode, Tithonos and the marchen or fairytale of Sleeping Beauty, Aurora―a Roman reference again. She is called Rose by Charles Perrault in the 100 sleeping years before her kiss with the prince. I am pondering more deeply how analogies are made through poetic meanings held in abeyance. Perhaps I am thinking of a myth of the body that remains embodied and the heroic turn into mythopoetic man as we move from a heroic mode that once made meaning possible to a poetic one making meaning still possible.

I am beginning with the story as it is told in Greco-Roman imagination since it is Greek imagination in western psyche-making which tells our first story of poetic imagination (and imaginally speaking Tithonos is both a Trojan soldier and a poet.) I am musing on how poetic imagination often resolves the problems of the day-world’s mortality during slumber. Night seems to play an eternally important role.

Regarding this apparent change which is made possible in the soul of words as they emanate from the temporized sphere of a dark goddess’s eternity― poetic meanings held in abeyance turns them metaphorically; regarding this changing of hours into h’ours marking just where something new is possible―moreover necessary, there is, the myth shares, once a necessary flaw in that early mythic and poetic dream’s algorithm supposed to resolve the changing of hours in that eternal love affair that always and forever goes on everywhere at once between mortal and immortal things words attempt to embody. What matters embody, matter embodies in the aging remains of our words which live on after we are gone.

The first myth’s “love problem” gets handed down to us today in the story of Aurora’s birth. Aurora is the Roman name given the goddess, Dawn although in the story it is Selene who resolves the solution to the first light’s love problem. Pre-Sentient being is resolving being in a day-world kind of knowing passing between both science and art; the passage between both is a space in which a kind of becoming time in space and becoming space in time share without obstruction.

Here is perhaps a distinction. The Greek Goddess of dawn, Eos, links being to root it in the irrational soul carrying the same light’s meaning both ways. This is just what Selene does in the tale of the shepherd Endymion, Endymion in the same role held originally by Tithonos, soldier as poet. Later on this is the princely role in that moment in Sleeping Beauty with the midnight kiss. Selene resolves the problem Eos has at first light and throughout all time. Moon’s lingo (sleep) resolves for eternity how it is in love with the forms of time, of which, one’s consciousness is also made in image and likeness. The three goddesses form a committee of sleep to do for us now what we cannot do for ourselves daily. Within our remains is our unknowing made known.

The marchen tale, “Sleeping Beauty” carries Aurora’s curse as the rose within it but this curse is a new twist on the original love theme in how love’s “changing movement” turns the logos of hours to h-our or h’our’s psyche-making awareness which cannot ever die. (No matter which ego thinks what next morning!) Alas, because of what ego thinks in the morning and in spite of this, immortal love can only live in the body of matter’s life in as much as we are able to bring it to life ourselves.  Yet, in as much as the committee of sleep sustains our nocturnal algorithm, love seems to find its own way into our world.

The tale of Eos and Tithonos

The tale of Selene and Endymion

Sleeping Beauty In The Wood