Joseph / Prohens
a long time tried to get some neuro-biological knowledge to reinforce my interest in the differences between human and non-human animals. These texts are not poems to stand on their own. They have no titles but act as extended captions or subtitles, the titles being the drawings. A true translation of a picture into words would reflect the technical mode of the visual in the structure of the language and choice of words. The impossibility of doing this brings me slap bang against the wall I encounter because I can’t draw. Much as I tried to write as if I had done the drawings, there’s a lot in the text that didn’t come from them. With language, once uttered or written you can never control its activity, as a draughtsman can a pure line. I know this is illusion. I look over the fence from the stony ground of my battle with words to the lush green grass of the visual artist. ‘If only I could draw . . .’ I would have the same difficulties, the limitations being not in the medium but in myself. This exercise of trying to transfer pictures into words belongs therefore to what I think of as the wider (wilder?) shores of translation.