Around us all is night, black night that howls outside the circle of our words or crouches magically with the fire reflected in its eyes. We are in it; it is in us. We need to know that night and we need not to know. Our primal ‘What if?’ is the twining of our fingers in the dark with those of unseen Chance and whispering Dread who walk with us. They are sister and brother to us, father and mother: the ancient family of not knowing, walking in uncertainty.
- from Household Tales (an essay from The Moment under the Moment)
Placed on the music stand of a fine harmonium in Bristol Museum (above), and also:
Participating in the Chinese New Year celebrations at Bristol Museum (I tucked it in after taking the photograph), plus:
Lurking among the frozen peas in our local branch of Waitrose.
Pan, the all, the everything half-human, half-animal god, is there to be a Thou for us to talk to. Because that’s what the language base is. It’s a place where the Thou of things is perceived and the silence speaks. The best that words can do is to make a space in which the silence can speak, in which the language of the everything can be heard. Humankind is naturally and properly religious, and I suggest that one definition of religion is that it is a mode of being and perception in which everything is Thou and nothing is It. Certainly we’ve tried it the other way; we’ve tried making both things and people It, and we’ve seen the results.
Is it possible that the sadness we sense in childhood is the sadness of the Thou perceivers who know that the world will come between them and the Thou of things, will stop its mouth and their ears? Is it the sadness of the listener who will not be allowed to hear the silence speak? Or is the sadness something else? Is it that whatever looks out through the child’s eyes knows that it must destroy the child to make the adult, must close the garden of the child to the grown-up just as Adam and Eve closed Eden to themselves? Is the sadness of the child the knowledge that it is doomed to repeat the original sin, deny its knowledge of the Thou, kill humble Pan and crucify the Word?
- from Pan Lives (an essay from The Moment under the Moment)
Tucked inside the Richer Sounds catalogue...
In a little red drawer in Habitat (I closed the drawer after taking the photograph)...
Lurking among the magazines in our local branch of Forbidden Planet.