The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Seminal Image #965

(Frederick Wiseman; 1972)


Timmy said...

Kent State U?

Tom Sutpen said...

No. 'Essene' is about a Benedictine monastery in Three Rivers, Michigan. That's its nominal subject, at any rate. Its really a portrait of Americans in flight, finding a degree of shelter from the times, yet bringing with them much of the pettiness and vanity that created the turmoil they're spiritually running from (one extraordinary scene, for example, has one of the administrators giving a long lecture to someone about how he insists on being addressed as Edward, because the name Ed implies an absence of respect that he cannot tolerate; all while trying to swat a fly).

If you ever get a chance to see it, do so. It's a beautiful film.