Poetic Investigations

Tom D'Evelyn on Poetry and Its Others (philosophy, theology, poetics)

Building a New Poetics, Word by Word



The “fertile void” is the central concept in a poetics. It echoes the Chinese concept of “dark enigma” (see Zhuangzi) but it refines it through the modern discourse on nihilism, which holds that the “argument from nothing” has a fertile “side” — as for example shows in the ancient argument over “creatio ex nihilo.”

As discussed in many volumes but most systematically in the three-volume work concluded with God and the Between, William Desmond’s “metaxy” is an image (derived from Plato but discussed by Eric Voegelin and Simone Weil and others in the last century) that sums up the picture of reality of which “the fertile void” is the origin.

“The given world is saturated with qualitative texture and value. .. It is the artist who is the servant of this surplus immediacy, but we are all unknowing guests at this feast in our being embodied. ” William Desmond in The William Desmond Reader 205

Notice the use of key words:  given, saturated, qualitative, servant, surplus, immediacy, guests, feast, embodied. These are theme words for a new poetics..


2 comments on “Building a New Poetics, Word by Word

  1. husmde
    September 26, 2014

    promising & exciting! I look forward to seeing how poetry can reshape our understanding of no-thing!


  2. Tom D'Evelyn
    November 12, 2014

    Reblogged this on Ecotone poetics.


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This entry was posted on September 26, 2014 by in Desmond, Fertile Void, metaxy.
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