Really pleased to have these unfaithful versions of three Spanish Mystics appear in Intercapillary Space. ‘Mystics’ is probably a retrospectively-applied category (?) that describes a group of reforming poet-monks/nuns who wanted to renew the Catholic Church and the type of language it permitted by expressing a more direct, often quasi-physical, communion with Christ combined with a radical emphasis on holy poverty; this was a bit too much for the nascent Golden Age Church (16th & 17th Cs) & they met with plenty of suppression. San Juan at least was imprisoned & tortured, & the constant references to prisons and prisoners in these poems seem to refer both the bodily prison mystical experience allows the faithful mind to transcend, but also to the rather more immediate problem of incarceration & neglect by their religious institutions, even though the intensity of professed faith ought, theologically speaking, allow them to cleave closer to it.
& anyway so i dunno what these vandalisitc versions do to all that, but the idea of holy non-sense is an appealing one, & maybe the ‘porque’, the ‘because’, is a ‘poor key error’, a typing mistake that garbles the message & prevents efficient communication, & as Edmund Hardy suggested maybe that’s what the Mystics do/did to merchantile Christianity & the dominant values of the culture that they live within but have been imprisoned by/voluntarily renounced, & why they were so threatening to the authorities.
- a vandalisitic / homophonic / back-translated /anagram-ed traducción muy libre of San Juan de la Cruz’s ‘Noche Oscura’, from the book La noche oscura del alma (The Dark Night of the Soul). Sorry Spanish literature, sorry Real Academia, sorry mysticism -
a slightly different grasp
& my golden drops are stags’
synchronous gold clicks
of both calipers mean
go, apex & autumn leaves
are go, low winter
sun is a carpet of blinding white gold
into the light & through
its curtain & the reverse camber