"if not I'll just die"

While some losers are on this massive Hildegaard of Bingen front, placards and marches for her twelth century mystic visions revealing the divinity of life itself. So many people talking about her, sometimes hard not to walk into conversations on or skirting around issues about the golden girl of the dark ages. Her writing reveals so much, "the gleaming flames and beauty of the first fallen angel descending so that the countless number of sparks, shining the like the bright light of all his ornaments filling the world with light"? Whatever. Those jerks haven't seen the illumination of Hildegard physically getting a vision from God, depicted as a red claw descending from a gold leaf heaven and gouging into her eyes. What does that suggest? Way too many things. Speaks volumes, maybe even libraries.

This isn't "that" Hildegaard, but she serves the same purpose. This live version of "This Guy Is In Love With You", written by B. Bacharach maintaining his mid career form, falters on that big climatic chorus where the "I need your love" is underscored by a wall of strings and choirs that fill up all the air in the track. 1 Instead, Hildegaard is revealed fully; her frail vibrato running like a slide projection reel of photographs of her alone in dressing rooms smoking alone, sitting in hotel bars where brown suited business men with thinning hair smile at her but leave her alone, ever alone. Hildegaard in a promo shot Die mörder sind unter uns, Hildegaard in an Atlanta, Georgia motel room with divine illumination bleeding from the motel ceiling ventilation grilles as the wooden slat wallpaper is replaced by gold leaf.

Both Hildegaard's remind me of the procession in the painting of Dante, the procession of sinners in Hell, seeming so distant and far away. That sense of being in between worlds. My guy Dante, and by my guy I feel that Dante is my main point of reference for the medieval, the greatest and brightest. Dante prefers his illumination more informally, relaxing in the dream within a dream painting as a giant betwixt/between heaven, hell and Florence. Unless its just the perspective that is all wrong. And how Dante prefigured Borges's Aleph, the point from which one can see a silver cobweb in the centre of a black pyramid, an inner courtyard in Calle Soler with the same tiles he had seen thirty years previously in the entryway of a house in Calle Frey Bentos, convex equatorial deserts, the Hermocrates lying unacknowledged in the estate of Alioto Caopena, one time ruler of the Mediterranean island of Aegina and traitor depending on your reading, and simultaneously every letter on every page, the bridge made from the collection of the library of Baghdad leaching black ink away from the Mongolian invasion. The Divine Comedy expresses, above all, a belief in an ordered universe, in which events not only tended towards a happy or "amusing" ending, but an ending influenced by a Providential will that orders all things to an ultimate good.2 This is not how life works.

Madeleine and I walked back from watching the belated coverage of the Rugby game, because I think it is sort of required behaviour in New Zealand, I don't have any active disdain for sports which seems to be a position that a lot of people I know that are taking, neither do I have any active interest in sport. Walking back down Kent terrace which is a great big freeway stretching down the side of Mount Victoria with a central margin that contains not just a statue of the titular Queen Victoria but also the Graeco- New Zealand War Memorial, post modern in the style of the Portland Public Authority Building 1977. Really bad location, in a city where location is all "location, location, location." Fact. We walked past a group of bogan car gangswith young threatening kids in black teeshirts and their girls with blonde hair that had been straightened and looked dead, deader than normal hair, straightened hair looks so disingenous, its such a misplaced optimism in our ability to shape order, like ironing shirts and the Divine Comedy.3 Anyway, in my experience walking past car gangs would have at least elicited a "fuck you faggots" in Christchurch even if I was arm in arm with my girlfriend or something, maybe especially because of it. Instead we got a " hey, your girlfriend is really cute." Which is so true.

1. Herb Alpert sings the original but is too much of a crooner to really give this track what it needs, which is discretion. It is all there in the line "when you smile" where he accents both the "you" and "smile" so it descends briefly into broadway camp/schtick/schmaltz. But I mean Herb has a limited voice and his real talent lies on the trumpet, so really I mean you need to take the song in its context in which its a stand alone single for suburban housewives. And in that context the song is gleaming like gold leaf.
2.Seung, T. K. (1962). The Fragile Leaves of the Sibyl: Dante's Master Plan. Westminster, MD: Newman Press.
3. Its really strange that car culture from the fifties and sixties seems to have some sort of glamorous allure, with James Dean or whatever, Badlands et all stretching out into some comfortable distant memory where gang members drove off with melee weapons and challenged each other for road dominance through violence or just driving or whatever. Its a pretty comfortable image which has been readily mined by fashion/mass culture lately, our inability to look forward causing the past to draw heavier shadows over us, as if my childhood dream of the sun maintaining its position in the sky indefinitely holding shadows ever present and never changing, in varsity jacket has attained some validation by the mass kultur. Its there in Twilight's starring actors post teen insouciance, its there in magazines of sullen men with slicked back hair and nowhere to go. We seem incapable of glamorising the boyracer subculture however, as it seems trapped in its own particular stasis - where style ends roughly at the time of "Break stuff" by limp bizkit. So confused by contemporary New Zealand life and its multiple shades of meaning.