Camera Work: A Photographic Quarterly — 1910 (Heft 31)

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of Don Quixote and Faust, in El Magico Prodigioso of Calderon, in the Dhama-
pada, in the Ibsen plays. The legerdemain of the senses it is that scratches
those lines of sorrow at mouth-ends, draws heavy blank curtains over the wild
scenery of the eye, sets a flag of truce on the purposeful brow and sends us to
cower behind the breastworks of an eternal reticence.
Men sail the seas for adventure, travel toward the poles for the novel,
and seek in remote lands the tang of the strange, the witchery of the weird;
but the adventure, the novelty, the tang and the witchery are in men them-
selves. I am my own novelty, my own adventure; it is I who give tang to
life. I am bewitched of wonder and mystery—and than me there is nothing
more weird that is conceivable. He who goes a-seeking leaves himself behind.
Other than your soul there is no reality. We can go toward nothing unless
that thing has first come toward us. The Brain is not only the centre of gravity,
but is gravity. The Will is not only the inventor of the universe, but is the
We go toward ourselves. My images and dreams and thoughts are eggs.
I enwomb and unwomb myself. I have infinities, eternities, nadirs, zeniths
boxed in my brain. I am always delivering myself to myself, cannot forsake
myself, cannot possibly exist in the world—seeing that the world exists in me.
The world began with mind; before that it was only a possibility. The
brain is the radiant hub of the universal illusion. We have exiled the stars
in their spaces and imprisoned light in its wall-less tombs of air. Pole star and
the frozen mountains of the moon are the mere flotsam and jetsam of our
evolved and highly elaborated imagining. All, all is only the balustrade of the
mind, out on the furthest portals of which this mysteriously appeared. I peer
for all its days at the image-children that it has flung off in its incalculable
This ethereal upstart with the brazen acclaim, this image-haunted mys-
tery that we name Man, who, after all, is but a slight excess of Nothing and
yet the measure of all, a drop of blazing oil that has bubbled out of a beaker
of flame in the hands of a Something—what does he know ? There are the
image and the imagined,the Brain and the World,the Eternal Ghost fabricating
its world-shrouds. Benjamin de Casseres.

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