Entangled — Papers! — Notes
Entangled — Papers! — Notes (2017)
Translated by Mary Shaw
The words quoted [here] are precisely the ones I don’t need to realize. If they stay in my memory, it is by radiating — wounding, irresorbable — an excess of reality.
It’s rather all of the rest of language and thought that seems to me affected by a lack of reality. And it is in relation to those words — cited as inclusions — that I try to realize, to create sentences that realize, and realize themselves. Or rather it is a whole volume that should then, around these quoted words, take form, and hold — fragile, but real. This volume should be made of sentences that move in relation to one another, balance each other and suspend each other reciprocally.
Some actually should be whispered, hardly audible, others should be felt in one blow — yes, like a vibrating blow —, even while remaining obstinately, as sentences, unfoldable (so as to deliver, if one wishes, a whole content).
And this volume, finally, would not be exactly closed. At least it should leave the impression that other sentences could still come there to play with those that are written and printed.
Entangled — Papers! — Notes is a bilingual edition of selected poetry by Claude Mouchard. It includes the original French texts along with English translations, and has a preface by Michel Deguy and an Introduction by Mary Shaw. It is the first ever presentation of Mouchard’s work in English.
“In three large frescoes—made up of splintered quotes and documents scored for the page in Mallarméan fashion — Claude Mouchard gives witness to what arrives, bearing testimony to the onset of his mother’s silence in the last phase of her struggle with Alzheimer’s, to the travails of those who land undocumented (“sans papiers”) in France, to the story of a refugee from Darfur who lived in his house in Orléans for eight years. But Mouchard in these texts does not merely stand witness: he is both the guest and the host (hôte) of those to whom he tries to speak and listen. The gift of this poetry lies in its unflinching hospitality. Mary Shaw’s loving translation has now permitted it a welcome — and a residence — in our speech.” — Richard Sieburth