Alexandre Lavet and Nicolas Moreau @ Deborah Bowmann
Learn from yesterday, live for today, look to tomorrow, rest this afternoon
[…] If man were to invest in whistling everything he normally entrusts to words, and if the blackbirdwere to modulate into his whistling all the unspoken truth of his natural condition, then the first step would be taken toward bridging the gap between … between what and what? Nature and culture? Silence and speech? Mr. Palomar always hopes that silence contains something more than language can say. But what if language were really the goal toward which everything in existence tends? Or what if everything that exists were language, and has been since the beginning of time? He is again Mr. Palomar gripped by anguish.
After having listen carrefully to the whistle of the blackbird, he tries to repeat it, as faithfully as he can. A puzzled silence follows, as if his message required careful examination; then an identical whistle re-echoes. Mr. Palomar does not know if this is a reply to his or the proof that his whistle is so different that the blackbirds are not the least disturbed by it and resume their dialogue as his nothing had happened.
They go on whistling, questioning in their puzzlement, he and the blackbirds.
The blackbird’s whistle, p.26-27, Palomar, Italo Calvino, A Harvest Book (1985)
Pictures by Ludovic Beillard and Alexandre Lavet©
Deborah Bowmann, Brussels