The real business of the War is buying and selling | Annotations for page 105 of Gravity’s Rainbow

Don’t forget the real business of the War is buying and selling 1. The murdering and the violence are self-policing, and can be entrusted to non-professionals. The mass nature of wartime death is useful in many ways 2. It serves as spectacle, as diversion from the real movements of the War. It provides raw material to… Continue reading The real business of the War is buying and selling | Annotations for page 105 of Gravity’s Rainbow

Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for page 539 | There is a terrible possibility now, in the World

I 1 think that there is a terrible possibility now, in the World 2. We may not brush it away, we must look at it. It is possible that They 3 will not die. That it is now within the state of Their art to go on forever 4—though we, of course, will keep dying as we always have.… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for page 539 | There is a terrible possibility now, in the World

The Great Serpent holding its own tail in its mouth | Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for page 412-13

Kekulé 1 dreams 2 the Great Serpent holding its own tail in its mouth, the dreaming Serpent which surrounds the World 3. But the meanness, the cynicism with which this dream is to be used 4. The Serpent that announces, “The World is a closed thing, cyclical, resonant, eternally-returning,” 5 is to be delivered into a system 6 whose… Continue reading The Great Serpent holding its own tail in its mouth | Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for page 412-13

No knightly hero | Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for page 364

Toward dusk, the black birds descend, millions 1  of them, to sit in the branches of trees nearby. The trees grow heavy with black birds, branches like dendrites of the Nervous System 2  fattening, deep in twittering nerve-dusk, in preparation for some important message… . 3 Later in Berlin, down in the cellar among fever-dreams with shit leaking out of… Continue reading No knightly hero | Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for page 364

Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for page 299 | Some of us love to be taken under mountains, and not always with horny expectations

There is that not-so-rare personality disorder known as Tannhäuserism 1 . Some of us love to be taken under mountains, and not always with horny expectations 2 .—Venus, Frau Holda, her sexual delights—no, many come, actually, for the gnomes 3 , the critters smaller than you, for the sepulchral way time stretches along your hooded strolls down here, quietly… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for page 299 | Some of us love to be taken under mountains, and not always with horny expectations

Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for pages 257-58

The War has been reconfiguring time and space into its own image 1. The track runs in different networks now. What appears to be destruction is really the shaping of railroad spaces to other purposes, intentions he can only, riding through it for the first time, begin to feel the leading edges of… .2 He checks… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow, annotations and illustrations for pages 257-58

Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for pages 204-05

He 1 gets back to the Casino just as big globular raindrops, thick as honey, begin to splat into giant asterisks 2 on the pavement, inviting him to look down at the bottom of the text 3 of the day 4, where footnotes will explain all 5. He isn’t about to look. Nobody ever said a day has to be… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for pages 204-05

Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for pages 203-04

Outside, he 1 heads down toward the quay, among funseekers, swooping white birds, an incessant splat of seagull shit 2. As I walk along the Bwa-deboolong 3 with an independent air… Saluting everybody in uniform 4, getting it to a reflex 5, don’t ask for extra trouble, try for invisible 6.… bringing his arm each time a bit more… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for pages 203-04

Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for page 203

Why here? 1 Why should the rainbow edges 2 of what is almost on him be rippling most intense here in this amply coded room? say why should walking in here be almost the same as entering the Forbidden 3  itself—here are the same long rooms, rooms of old paralysis and evil distillery, of condensations and residues… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for page 203

Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for pages 148-49 | Our history is an aggregate of last moments

—(Quietly) 1 It’s been a prevalent notion 2. Fallen sparks 3. Fragments of vessels broken at the Creation 4. And someday, somehow, before the end, a gathering back to home. A messenger from the Kingdom, arriving at the last moment 5. But I tell you there is no such message, no such home 6—only the millions of last moments… no more.… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for pages 148-49 | Our history is an aggregate of last moments

Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for page 105 | The real business of the War is buying and selling

Don’t forget the real business of the War is buying and selling 1. The murdering and the violence are self-policing, and can be entrusted to non-professionals. The mass nature of wartime death is useful in many ways 2. It serves as spectacle, as diversion from the real movements of the War. It provides raw material to… Continue reading Gravity’s Rainbow — annotations and illustrations for page 105 | The real business of the War is buying and selling

Certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life | Moby-Dick reread, riff 13

I. In this riff, Ch. 49-53 of Moby-Dick. II. Ch. 49, “The Hyena,” begins with this wonderful paragraph, which I will share in full: There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life whIIen a man takes this whole universe for a vast practical joke, though the wit thereof he… Continue reading Certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life | Moby-Dick reread, riff 13

Thomas Pynchon beats J.G. Ballard to win the 2020 Tournament of Zeitgeisty Writers

Thomas Pynchon beat out J.G. Ballard, earning 61% of 337 votes of my totally-scientific and not-at-all arbitrary twitter poll to become the Champion of the 2020 Tournament of Zeitgeisty Writers. Mr. Pynchon’s trophy is at Biblioklept World Headquarters here in Florida. After this whole quarantine business is over I’m sure he’ll arrange to pick it… Continue reading Thomas Pynchon beats J.G. Ballard to win the 2020 Tournament of Zeitgeisty Writers