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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Naming 2005

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N A M I N G by D U F F M A T T H E W R O B E R T S B . A . , The Unive r s i ty o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , 2003 M A . , The Unive r s i ty o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , 2005 A T H E S I S S U B M I T T E D I N P A R T I A L F U L F I L M E N T O F T H E R E Q U I R E M E N T S F O R T H E D E G R E E O F M A S T E R O F A R T S in T H E F A C U L T Y O F G R A D U A T E S T U D I E S E n g l i s h T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A A p r i l 2005 © D u f f Ma t thew Roberts , 2005 Abstract N a m i n g is a narrative strategy that serves to explicate the conceptual mode l the strategy is drawn from. Through a close reading and examinat ion o f the narrative strategies i n D a v i d M a l o u f s short stories " Jacko ' s R e a c h " and " B l a c k s o i l Coun t ry" and his novel Remembering Babylon, and Jack H o d g i n s ' short stories "Separat ing" and "Sp i t D e l a n e y ' s Is land" and his nove l Innocent Cities, my thesis proposes that names are stories and naming is storytell ing. Th is thesis offers a model o f forward/lateral th ink ing as a structure that performs, self-consciously, the layer ing or embedding o f stories w i t h i n names. Further, this thesis also contains cr i t ical engagement w i t h s imi lar layerings i n the w o r k o f F r e d W a h , A n n e Carson, L a u r i e R i c o u , Thomas K i n g , D o n M c K a y , D e n i s L e e , and T i m L i l b u r n . Taken together, these diverse wri ters ' th ink ing on naming and storytel l ing respond i n m y thesis to Ecoc r i t i c a l and Pos tcolonia l theoretical modes o f textual address and analysis. iii T A B L E O F C O N T E N T S Abstract 1 1 Table of Contents i» Dedication 1 V Prologue On Approach 1 V2.I The Story of Forward/Lateral 1 DEFINITION I Placing Emphasis: Texturing Text 8 1.1 The Story of "There are no Names But Stories" 8 1.2 The Story of Responding to Resistance 11 1.3 The Story of Proximal and Distal 13 1.4 The Story of Responding to an Ecocritical Model 19 DEFINITION II Constellating. Parts of Speech in Parallax 26 2.1 The Story of Naming Parts of Speech 26 2.2 The Story of the Verb "To Re-cognate" 28 2.3 The Story of a Lateral Story 28 2.4 The Story of Parallax 30 2.5 The Story of Tales of the Arabian Nights and Framing 33 2.6 The Story of Tales of a Thousand and One Nights and Framing 34 2.7 The Story of Alf Layla WaLayla and Framing 34 2.8 The Story of the Textured Text of Naming's Approach 36 2.9 The Story of So 37 2.10 The Story of It 39 2.11 The Story of Is, of Metaphor and Naming 44 2.12 The Story of Un-Settling Settled 53 DEFINITION III Negation, Hyphenation, Identity: Naming's Morphemes 56 3.1 The Story of Hokusai and His Many Names 56 3.2 The Story of Negation 59 3.3 The Story of Hyphens on Gravestones 60 3.4 The Story of Wah's Poetics 61 3.5 The Story of Wall's Hyphen 70 3.6 The Story of Spit's Re-cognition 76 3.7 The Story of Sumner's Re-cognition 78 DEFINITION III.V Named Choices 83 3.5.1 The Story of My Dad's Stories 83 3.5.2 The Story of My Choices 85 Works Cited 89 I V Dedication I would like to thank Laura Moss for her humour, confidence, and advice; Laurie Ricou and Kevin McNeilly for their close reading; Bill New for gifting me "lateral" and "parallax" and helping me to diink through the art of teaching; Travis V. Mason for listening and laughter; My family, Chnstia, Sam and Hans; My cat, Otis; and Kristina, the most, and always. Definition 0.51 namely [NAME sb. + -LY 2.] 1. Par t icular ly , especial ly, above a l l . Prologue/Foreword/Forward On Approach T o give h i m a name w o u l d name the rest. Michael Ondaatje's Anil's Ghost, 56. T H E S T O R Y O F F O R W A R D / L A T E R A L N a m i n g i n literature functions as a narrative strategy but to contradictory ends. A l t h o u g h naming is a narrative strategy for excluding and including, representing and repressing, subverting and l iberating, constructing and deconstructing, embracing and dismissing, suppressing and magnify ing that w h i c h is named, naming is not just, as postcolonial theory w o u l d have it, a poli t ics o f resistance. N a m i n g is invent ion, imagin ing . N a m i n g is media t ion , inbetweeness, a "no isy hyphen" to use Fred W a h ' s tenn (Diamond 176). N a m i n g is story and storytel l ing because "that's a l l we are" as Thomas K i n g says (Truth 2) . N a m i n g is filing and categorization, but for Laur i e R i c o u that same filing is "clustered accord ing to some shift ing set o f associations," " w i n d i n g and s t r inging" (Arbutus/Madrone 2). N a m i n g is negation, for D o n M c K a y "name as epitaph" (Vis 89). N a m i n g is assertion, negation as assertion. Jack H o d g i n s and D a v i d M a l o u f employ naming as a textual strategy. M y thesis w i l l suggest a w a y o f reading and unpack ing their strategies. I have chosen these two authors because al though they are separated b y considerable geography, history, and ' Chapter entry definitions are from the Oxford English Dictionary. 2 "File" is from the Latin filum, meaning thread or string. 2 culture, and although they both wri te out o f and about their different respective geographies, histories, and cultures, they both emp loy naming as a narrative strategy. E a c h author employs different textual strategies under the rather large umbre l l a o f naming proper; however, their naming functions to m o b i l i z e the fact that h o w w e name mediates our interaction i n and w i t h the wor ld . B o t h o f m y wri te r ' s works are also part icular ly conducive to close reading; close reading activates the theory. H o w is Jack Hodgins i n his short stories "Separat ing" and "Sp i t De laney ' s Is land" (Spit Delaney's Island), and h o w is D a v i d M a l o u f i n his short stories " Jacko ' s R e a c h " and " B l a c k s o i l Coun t ry" (Dream Stuff)—or rather, and importantly, h o w are their t ex ts—wri t ing and th ink ing about naming? H o w does "Jacko ' s R e a c h , " a p lace name, gesture towards different realizations for different characters - for some, anecdote, for others communica t ion , history, map, the romantic , a place for games, rumour, invent ion, wilderness, and progress. The name Jacko ' s R e a c h contains a l l o f these poss ib i l i t ies . W h a t does Spi t De laney ' s progress through self-awareness i n "Separat ing" and "Sp i t De laney ' s Island," a naming o f se l f writ ten through a measur ingly more accurate n a m i n g o f se l f and other(s), reveal about naming as narrative strategy and naming as drawn from a cogni t ive mode l that guides engagement w i t h the wor ld? M a l o u f and Hodg ins are a lways already aware that any attention to naming [PJoli t ics evaporates before aesthetics. - George Elliott Clarke's Whylah Falls, xxiv. i n texts articulates a pol i t ics o f resistance to 3 I have been asked to define "politics" in this context. A politics of resistance is a reading of naming in a text so that the textural aspects of the text itself—naming as a narrative strategy—are ignored in favour of a immediate interrogation of the text's socio-political implications. I believe that moving directly to the larger context of a text—historical, social, cultural, political (in its governmental sense)—tends to ignore the strategy within the words themselves. I authorize close reading in order to avoid watershed pronouncements of a texts political functioning. 3 certain co lon ia l practices o f naming . Laterally, G e o f f W a r d writes i n his essay on/ca l led "Poet ics" that his "essay is not a rebuttal o f theory but rather a reminder that the practice o f wr i t ing poems does i t se l f and o f necessity s ignal a theoretical d imens ion" (Glossalia: An Alphabet of Critical Keywords 227). M a l o u f and Hodg ins , when wr i t i ng about naming, w h e n e m p l o y i n g a strategy that employs naming , s ignal multiple theoretical dimensions, instead o f " a " theoretical d imension. The wr i t ing , the crafting, the strategy i n the choice i n the w r i t i n g and crafting is readable and theoretical, w h i c h is to say is reflexive about h o w the wr i t i ng is read. M y pr ior i ty is to attend to the textual strategy first. H o d g i n s ' nove l Innocent Cities (1990) and M a l o u f s Remembering Babylon (1993) are anc i l l a ry characters i n the story I wri te about naming ' s texture. Remembering Babylon is about 4 h o w a commun i ty reacts to, and co-exists w i th , the intrusion o f an outsider, and h o w the outsider 's ve ry presence (whose name is G e m m y ) forces the individuals i n the commun i ty to engage w i t h their o w n naming practices. Innocent Cities is about h o w commun i ty is constituent o f ind iv iduals interacting by naming , and h o w their strategies o f n a m i n g come to be foregrounded. That both authors be long to a canon o f postcolonial writers suggests that they fo l l ow the conventional pos tcolonia l approach to write i n such a w a y that the w r i t i n g seeks to act as a corrective to past w r i t i n g strategies b y w r i t i n g back to them i n such a w a y that the w r i t i n g s imultaneously resists and proposes alternative reading strategies, the and a taught connector. H o w e v e r , I 4 I use the preposition "about" while recognizing that it is problematic. It suggests the distillation of text into a singular essence; it proposes synthesis, a limited focus, and linearity when Descartes has long ago passed away. W. H. New begins the follow-up publication to his 2004 Sedgewick lecture by attending to the "about" ("...About Irony...") in the title of his talk. He writes, "the lead preposition in my title hints at a «o«-linear challenge: so I will be non-linear in what I have to say, by intention. About: from OE onbutan, "on the outside." I do not want simply to repeat what critics and theorists have said about irony in general, but to look at what some specific literary examples suggest about the function of subject, strategy, and tone" (11). 4 bel ieve that M a l o u f and Hodg ins are rendering a naming-as-narrative-strategy that gets at a different complex , a complex w h i c h includes yet reaches beyond the naming as resistance, n a m i n g as strategy for resist ing the co lon ia l / imper ia l s ingular i ty , a s ingular i ty that l imi t s analysis o f the inc red ib ly r i c h textual and textural strategy o f naming . T h e l imi ta t ion here, I think, is the tendency to place the text 's soc io -po l i t i ca l impl ica t ions and ramificat ions before, and at times i n exc lus ion of, a close reading o f the text itself, examin ing h o w the words on the page enact certain strategies o f approach, that carry tone, texture, and the tactile. Laur i e R i c o u ' s The Arbutus/Madrone Files: Reading the Pacific Northwest (2002), Thomas K i n g ' s The Truth About Stories: A Native Narrative (2003), D o n M c K a y ' s Vis a Vis: Field Notes on Poetry & Wilderness (2001), F red W a h ' s Diamond Grill (1996) and Faking It: Poetics & Hybridity (2000), and A n n e Carson ' s Economy of the Unlost (1999) are a typical theoretical texts. Firs t , they te l l good stories, engage i n storytel l ing. Second, they offer ways for reading, are theory . 5 I a m interested i n the ways these texts—texts that do not read as self-consciously theoretical, texts that propose theory hesitantly, h u m b l y , d ia log ica l ly , that contain both the creative ( formal ly , narratological ly) and theoretical, and that wri te about negation, f i l i ng , s torytel l ing, hyphenation, and a post-subject-posit ion-thinking—offer a w a y i n to (and out of) the n a m i n g i n M a l o u f s and H o d g i n ' s texts. A l l the texts also present th ink ing about n a m i n g itself. T h i s intertextual, inter-idea, nested-layering approach a l lows each secondary text to guide but not dictate, a l l o w but not demand, suggest but not insist, p rov ide entry but 5 I suggest that these texts are theoretical because they all reflect on the writing process. They all engage with how words on the page produce meaning. They also all allow specific close readings—readings of the hyphen, of linguistic negation, of how stories are structured and told—to offer ways of thinking about what the close readings themselves posit about the way language mediates our interaction in and with the world. 5 not contract the frame or narrow the funnel/focus or th icken the lens. In other words , the engagement I am interested i n , the approach I want to accede to, is one that attends to m y authors' w r i t i n g o f naming laterally, or as Dennis L e e writes i n " B o d y M u s i c : Notes o n R h y t h m i n Poetry ," w i t h a "forward/ lateral" act ion (41). T h i n k i n g lateral ly contains traces o f certain chords i n tangential th ink ing . L e e is ta lking about forward/lateral rhy thm as it generates meaning i n poetry, a rhy thm that al lows a "coherence [that] is l oca l , p rov i s iona l , [and] contingent on the f l u x " (41) - through a l i s tening (and i n m y case, reading) engagement, the text becomes sonic, the wr i t ing conveys "the w o r l d as it is... not consecutive, but ove r l a id" (43). T h e concept o f forward/lateral t h ink ing informs m y approach. The central, thicker, arrow i n the conceptual d iagram to the right denotes the progression through argument and assertion towards conclusion(s) or process, a movement that contains the texts I l ook at, and the naming as narrative strategy that leads to complex i ty i n those texts. The lateral segments/ thinking - either inspired b y the ideas/ thinking i n m y secondary texts that help to explicate naming as complex i n m y p r imary text, or the instances o f naming i n m y p r imary text (as evidence) that lead me into the ideas i n m y secondary texts as reflective/refractive o f m y reading o f the pr imary texts - further the argument, refuse to categorize, reinforce the structure o f the intertextual wr i t i ng i n the thesis itself, a l l o w naming to be more than resistance, at once. There is also an i m p l i e d progression, momentum, bui ldup . W h i l e the laterals va ry i n length, they are also balanced. forward/lateral t h ink ing 6 Forward/ lateral th ink ing is important to me because it m i m i c s not o n l y h o w naming i tse l f functions, but h o w I wri te: names contain definit ions s tabi l ized momenta r i ly i n t ime; t ime moves forward and names acquire different definit ions, definit ions that are either mutations o f previous definit ions or w h o l l y new. I wri te i n such a w a y as to leave r o o m for m y reader to attach laterals to the laterals I propose. B y w a y o f "c rack ing the perfect, smug egg o f poss ib i l i ty" ("To B e g i n , T o B e g i n " 333), I offer the f o l l o w i n g questions: • I f naming categorizes, and as categorization confines, frames, announces l imi t s and boundedness, i n what ways do M a l o u f s and H o d g i n s ' w r i t i n g o f names and naming counteract these inherent/assumed properties, h o w do they m u d d y the "prec is ion"? • H o w does control led intertextual structuring w o r k to destabil ize that very structure and h o w is that structure l i nked to naming? • W h a t is l eak ing out o f naming? • H o w do M a l o u f and Hodg ins get at the texture w i t h i n naming? • In what ways are M a l o u f and Hodg ins author iz ing a different approach to naming , an approach that attempts to move past the inherent (always already) po l i t i cs o f naming? • H o w do writers create a complex out o f a requirement for representation, and i n such a w a y that the focus is more on the engagement w i t h the fact o f creating/seeing/glossing/attending (the wr i t i ng thereof, the language, the aesthetics, the strategy) rather than on subject posi t ion? • H o w is exp lo r ing and cont ro l l ing the hyphen 's ambiguit ies , assumed transparencies, and i m p l i c i t possibi l i t ies analogous to m y approach to the study o f naming? • C a n naming be story? C a n naming be storytel l ing? • H o w is a study o f naming as strategy o f approach pedagogical? • H o w are M a l o u f and Hodg ins not us ing naming economica l ly? W h i c h is to say h o w are their approaches to naming reveal ing an expensive engagement wi th , and attention to, the w o r l d ? 6 I propose to a l l o w these question to m o b i l i z e reading c losely . M y forward/lateral approach, m y theoretical texts that tel l stories first, the questions I ask, and m y close reading o f short stories and their necessity, as a result o f economy, to include strategies that refract meaning , a l l force me to stay close to the text. I want m y thesis to engage m y reader because I m o v e through the text w h i l e reaching out and gesturing towards the impl ica t ions born o f the text itself. M y movement w i t h i n the naming i n stories and the momen tum the movement generates i n the form o f an engagement w i t h tone, texture, and strategy, I hope, w i l l m o b i l i z e m y reader as w e l l . 6 While these questions are not sequential, the interrogatives are controlled by two threads: one, the primary texts that the questions will be applied to, and two, they all ask questions about how naming functions. 8 D e f i n i t i o n 1 nameable [f. NAME v . 1 + -ABLE.] 1. That admits o f be ing named, or be ing ca l led b y a certain name. C h a p t e r 1 Placing Emphasis: Texturing Text T h e mag ic of . . . l i terature.. . is not i n the themes o f the stories - identity, i solat ion, loss, ceremony, communi ty , maturation, home - it is i n the w a y meaning is refracted b y cosmology , the w a y understanding is shaped b y cultural paradigms. - from Thomas King's The Truth About Stories, 112. T H E S T O R Y O F " T H E R E A R E N O N A M E S B U T S T O R I E S " T o name. B o t h D a v i d M a l o u f s "Jacko ' s R e a c h " and Jack H o d g i n s ' "Sp i t D e l a n e y ' s Is land" contain apostrophes, possessives: one impl ies disparate locat ion ("reach" - to project, to extend), one impl ies the bordered and contained (islands are geographical ly framed b y their beaches and b y water); one 's possessive is embedded i n the place name itself, one 's possessive impl ies ownership, the be longing to a named ind iv idua l . B o t h possessives are ambiguous. A named place can not r ight ly o w n itself; Spi t De l aney does not o w n V a n c o u v e r Island. B o t h names, then, tel l stories about namers, the embedding w i t h i n the name itself, f raming, and the practice o f naming imbued i n a concept o f ownership , a concept that unpacks the hierarchies i n subject-object power dynamics i n order to examine the hierarchies i m b e d d e d 7 i n particular cogni t ive schema, w h i c h are, i n turn, revealed through an examinat ion o f the schema's naming strategies/practices. 7 Embedded, imbedded. Rather than the double spelling suggesting a lack of focus, it suggests an initial ambiguity in the syntax of naming. Embedded is used consistently from this point on. 9 Phew! A long sentence, I k n o w , fu l l o f strategy, approach, text, texture, story, storytell ing, names, naming,, and (perhaps) other things I have not named. A compl ica ted system. A complex system. A system that is a complex , awai t ing engagement (complex [n. 1]: a who le made up of . . . interrelated parts). A shorter sentence might read: naming is a narrative strategy that serves to explicate the conceptual mode l the strategy is d rawn from. Th i s thesis then is as equal ly about narrative strategy as it is about conceptual models . In fact, they run i n paral le l , or more accurately i n paral lax. Recogn i t i on o f the work ings o f naming as a narrative strategy and the subsequent work ings o f the cogni t ive schema the naming draws o n posits a post-postcolonial approach. A n d here I must name it , post-postcolonial that is , or at least propose its difference engine. I bel ieve, as does L a u r a M o s s i n her d iscuss ion o f "The Pol i t i cs o f Ev e ry d ay H y b r i d i t y " i n Zad ie Smi th ' s White Teeth, and as does Rober t B u d d e i n his d iscuss ion o f the "Pol i t i c s o f F o r m " i n Fred W a h ' s prose poetry, that the post-postcolonial contains some sort o f a lways already moment . M o s s "want[s] to go beyond seeing H y b r i d i t y as an in-between space [as H o m i B h a b h a renders the third space created i n the contact zone between two cultures] or as the art iculat ion o f the necessari ly ambivalent interaction between co lon ia l authority and the co lon ia l subject" (Wasafiri 12). Pursuant to her desire, M o s s asks the question that she believes White Teeth is attending to, "what happens to the subject w h o is not ' in-between' two cultures or races. . . but w h o s i m p l y i s ? " (13) Rober t B u d d e bel ieves that the form o f F red W a h ' s fragmented poetry is a lways already po l i t i ca l i n that it transgresses " l inear i ty , narrative cohes ion . . . the Cartes ian ego . . . and the integri ty o f the w o r d " (292). B u d d e bel ieves that "cr i t ics have fai led to recognize . . . the dual function o f [Wah ' s ] wr i t i ng both as opposi t ional and as [an] 'agent[] o f rear t icula t ion '" (288). A s All definitions are derived from Merriam-Webster (unless otherwise stated). 10 postcolonia l wr i t ing , the form o f W a h ' s poetry attends to resistance to dominant modes o f discourse, the form is a lways already resisting and therefore po l i t i c a l ; after the po l i t i c a l moment, W a h ' s poetry acts as a reagent for suggestions for the creative c l ay ing o f language, and focuses o n the w a y language makes meaning from the inside out. In this rubr ic , a wri ter ' s strategies, the pedagogy o f their aesthetics, 9 are g i v e n p r imacy over pos tco lon ia l i sm ' s singular attention to the pol i t ics o f opposi t ion and resistance. Is it possible to envisage Budde ' s list o f poetics—resistance, interference, improvisa t ion , colour, d is junct ion, new w a y o f k n o w i n g , homemaking , interruption and insurrection, redress, f emin i sm, emancipat ion, language entanglement/estrangement/stranglement (293- 4)—without fast-tracking straight to their po l i t i ca l connotations? W h a t happens i f w e m o v e beyond the certainty o f starting and conc lud ing w i t h the " P o l i t i c s " i n the titles o f both articles just discussed? D o n M c K a y writes, " a human perspective is imposs ib le to escape" and therefore it is not about the product o f our attention, but the strategies w i t h w h i c h w e attend: not should attend, but do attend. W h a t happens when the f o l l o w i n g question is proposed: what is happening i n texts both before and beyond the noise o f the p o l i t i c a l ? 1 0 H o w e v e r (or but, b i g but), i n the conversation before y o u there is m u c h w o r k to do w i t h the embedded steps in-between, m u c h engagement w i t h the processes at w o r k i n the naming narrative strategy itself. A s a mode l , storyteller-theorist Thomas K i n g locates h is approach to s torytel l ing i n the approach first. F o r example, his interest i n N . Scott M o m a d a y ' s House Made of Dawn, what makes the nove l " spec ia l , " is not that it w o n the 9 What is at stake here in regard to education and teaching is a student's ability to read: read the words on the page, their strategies, and have their strategies activate thinking about how language mobilizes thinking about how language not only describes but mediates and prescribes interaction. 1 0 I write fiction, tell stories, name with stories; stories come first, reading the political in stories is for the reader; writing metaphor, plot, characters, dialogue is for me. Don McKay removes himself from the city to a cabin to write ecopoetry, in part, because it removes him from noise, from the hum of progress. Removal from this noise allows him to hear and write out of the ecology that surrounds him. I propose that sometimes socio- political readings of texts are so noisy that they drowned-out the song of the text itself, the way the language speaks, thinks through its own strategies. 11 Puli tzer P r i ze nor that it is writ ten by a Na t ive writer, but "the questions that it raises and its concern w i t h narrative strategies." Narra t ive strategies, for K i n g , are "starting poin ts" (102). K i n g starts w i t h strategy, w i t h approach, w i t h an engagement w i t h the cogni t ive m o d e l itself. K i n g and I propose, name that is , to approach the w a y writers approach rendering text. T H E S T O R Y O F R E S P O N D I N G T O R E S I S T A N C E . Firs t and foremost, " Jacko ' s R e a c h " b y D a v i d M a l o u f is a story. Bu t , " Jacko ' s Reach" is also a story about its title, about a place name, and even more spec i f ica l ly about a named place ' s mul t ip le stories, w h i c h is a compl ica t ion o f certain b inar i s t i c , 1 1 s i m p l y referential naming practices. T h e named place is , i n M a l o u f s s tory 's case, many stories happening simultaneously, or, as K i m Stafford renders the idea i n his poem "There A r e N o Names B u t Stories," "a story happening many t imes" (11). Firs t notice h o w I wri te the subject o f the previous sentence "named p lace" rather than place. Second, notice the embedded construct, complex : mul t ip le stories, one place. " Jacko ' s R e a c h " also fo rma l ly embeds stories. It contains a story about eight-year-old J i m m y D i c k e n s f ind ing the bur ied body, or rather the s tockinged feet thereof, o f a murdered b u l l o c k y 1 2 on the Reach . " Jacko ' s R e a c h " is also a story about the "real story" (95) o f an older J i m m y ' s re te l l ing o f the story cata lyzing the transportation o f " O l d J i m m y " back into young J i m m y ' s shoes, and o f the listener o f the story, as a result o f the imag in ing i n the act o f l is tening, seeing both J i m m y s before h i m , the paradox both an expansion and contraction o f t ime. " Jacko ' s R e a c h " then, as a name, "evokes" not just the dusty tracks w i t h their dr ied leaves and pr ickles that your bare feet had traveled a thousand times and whose every turning led to a destination 1' The place is one half of the binary, the name is the other. 1 2 A homonymic shift of bullocky into bull-cocky, and the tall-tale or tall-telling, is another layer of the story implicated in the name. 12 y o u knew and had a name for, but a place, ent ic ing, unentered, for w h i c h the old name, to remain appropriate, had to be interpreted in new way. (96, emphases added) The constel lat ion created b y name, place, old, interpretation, and new offers alternatives to pure topographies o f place, to the m a p p i n g o f names, to names as latitude and longitude. T o name evokes knowledge . Names , as stories, as parables 1 3 i n fact, require cogni t ion , require interpretation, require reinterpretation w i t h each successive te l l ing . N a m e s repopulate w i t h stories resul t ing i n renaming: the new stories or o l d stories interpreted n e w l y rename the name. T h e name is a lways " o l d " as a result o f the m a k i n g " n e w " i n the retel l ing. T h e name is the place, a metaphor. T h e place is the story, another metaphor. Ano the r w a y o f rendering what the evocat ion recognizes is b y pos i t ion ing "response" i n opposi t ion to "resistance," apposi t ional ly paral le l . I find B e n O k r i ' s statement "stories are a lways a form o f resistance" (121) incomplete , inadequate i n that its th ink ing about the function o f stories frames an opposi t ional and b inary feedback loop. Po l i t i c a l resistance eschews c o m m u n i c a t i o n . 1 4 Theses promote antitheses; opposi t ional constructs and compet ing discourses rarely engage i n dialogue. In this sense, filtered through the approach I outl ine i n m y introduction, resistance offers l i t t le forward and m u c h lateral: resistance also does not always necessari ly lead to an alternative. Response, however , functions more l i ke conversat ion: response re-acts, mob i l i ze s the teller 1 3 Chinua Achebe writes: "Until the lions produce their own historian, the story of the hunt will glorify only the hunter" (73). Achebe calls this parable, this story, a "metaphor." Some of the parable's pedagogical power is in its metaphorical capability, in the story it names and more importantly the prescriptive power of the story it names. 1 4 Perhaps "doesn't necessarily include" instead of "eschews" is better here. Or perhaps the sentence should read "political resistance doesn't necessarily constitute dialogue." T h e desire to k n o w the w o r l d behind its names is the death o f k n o w i n g w h i c h is objective, ordering, communicab le and o f the apparently secure l i fe that rests on such k n o w i n g . from T i m Li lburn 's Living In The World As If It Were Home, "How To B e Here,' : 13. 13 as re-agent: stories result i n response, stories offer ing recogni t ion and alternative. Response connotes s torytel l ing, a forward/lateral approach. Put another way , T i m L i l b u r n ' s approach to naming hopes for a "refus[al] o f posturings jus t i f ied b y the o ld hierarchies" (21). M o b i l i z e d b y recogni t ion that a forward progression (alternatively named process) requires that a l l hierarchies become " o l d hierarchies" and that nothing remains f ixed or immutable , for L i l b u r n the o l d becomes new and the new becomes o l d because as a poet he bel ieves his gaze should be "rooted i n a posture o f deference and attention" (22). T h i s "posture," inspired b y the fai lure o f names, recognizes the need to watch without names. W a t c h things ' "namelessness" (11). A l l o w things their "hect ic complex[ i f ica t ion]" (22) instead o f s imple nomina t ion that hides descript ion and essence, that doesn't a l low the named to name itself. T h e poet 's strategy is contained b y a poet ic attention mediated by metaphor. F o r the storyteller M a l o u f , the o l d becomes new and the new becomes o l d when m o b i l i z e d by the requirement for a name 's necessary restorying, an interpretive act that necessitates the m a k i n g o f new stories. THE STORY OF PROXIMAL AND DISTAL. In the rubr ic o f "Jacko ' s R e a c h " names as stories are located in place, framed b y place. Before I get m u c h further I must attend to place, after a l l " Jacko ' s R e a c h " is a p lace name, and m u c h naming is place specific. T h e stories that arise out o f the place are framed b y the place. In this sense, and i n most senses, frames i m p l y contained creation i n the same w a y that names i m p l y storied referents. Loca ted paradox. In fact, Lau r i e R i c o u ' s " R e g i o n , R e g i o n a l i s m " (948-953) entry i n the Encyclopedia of Literature in Canada begins b y stating that the two terms "direct[ly] atten[d] to the ways w r i t i n g and c r i t i c i sm use par t icu la r iz ing features o f place and space to shape an understanding o f story and culture [and, to a degree, are a function o f the ways i n which] place and identi ty interrelate" (948). Further, and 14 significant to my study, conceptually "regional writing concerns naming, and, therefore, constructing a 'home' in language" (950). While a discussion of naming as discursive strategy for constructing ideas of 'home' sits outside the scope of the current discussion, two of Kim Stafford's poems offer entry into my naming as storytelling discussion, a response to resistance politics which places primary focus on the strategies of storytelling and the naming therein, rather than on their geopolitical implications or sociopolitical ramifications. Stafford's poems, "There Are No Names But Stories" and "If We Shed Our Names" attend to the ways in which people can and do name, the ways in which naming contains textual strategy of approach. There are no names but stories. "Without a name," Frank Neussal writes, "no linguistic means of reference is possible" (Neussal 2). Fair enough, but incomplete. There are two Vancouvers. Relative degrees of proximity and distance dictate how speakers identify which Vancouver they are calling on. In Australia, a citizen of Vancouver, Washington, U.S.A. would say just that. In Vancouver, Washington, a citizen of Vancouver, British Columbia might say "I am returning to another Vancouver" in order that the located speaker from a similarly named place gesture towards the place elsewhere. The concept of more than once place with the same name requires more naming and storytelling. The opening lines of "There Are No Names But Stories" tells the story of how the Kwakiutl15 of the Pacific Northwest name. The lines read When the anthropologist asked the Kwakiutl for a map of their coast, they told him stories: Here? Salmon gather. Here? Sea otter camps. Here seal sleep. Here we say body covered with mouths. 1 5 Kevin McNeilly writes that this name is no longer the accepted name of these people, Kwakwaka'wakw is (cf. next page). He also mentions that, interestingly, the name also derives from a narrative of misunderstanding. 15 H o w can a place have a name? (11) Stafford's a l ignment o f naming and m a p p i n g (toponyms o f place) and anthropology (the study o f human beings through a t axonomy o f o r ig in , phys i ca l characteristics, envi ronmenta l and social relations, and culture a l l located to a specific place) places two cogni t ive schema i n opposi t ion, that o f the anthropologists and that o f the K w a k i u t l . T h e p l ac ing here is not rendered as resistance but response, the response is s torytel l ing, as w e l l as a response that engages w i t h the co lon ia l anthropologist 's request who expects a certain def in i t ion o f mapping , mapabi l i ty , and the k i n d o f naming they perform. First , for the K w a k i u t l , no ind iv idua l tells stories, "they" tel l stories. T h e "they" signif ies communa l ownership . Second, the act o f naming place, o f mapp ing as it were, is the act o f t e l l ing stories about place instead o f naming result ing from a l imi ted amount o f white-space next to a dot or picture on a piece o f paper. The K w a k i u t l ' s assertion unpacks the assumptions i n the apparent p rec i s ion o f located names. T h i r d , N a t i v e culture's place and ownership are more m o b i l e and f lu id concepts than i n a non-Nat ive system o f ind iv idua l t i t l e . . . . Trad i t iona l ly , K w a k w a k a ' w a k w names were based on the f o l l o w i n g : (1) phys ica l characteristics ["flat place"] (2) use ["winter place" or " rocky place to tie up the canoe"] and (3) h i s tor ica l events [ "Mink ' s bur ia l place"] ." ( P o w e l l and Webster , qtd. i n R i c o u 54-55). I f places are named for their funct ional i ty—descript ive functionali ty i n need o f more than one noun for what happens or happened i n them—not on ly do mul t ip le names locate each place, the same name locates different places. The necessity then, for names as stories becomes apparent, i f on ly i n order to describe the m u l t i p l i c i t y o f place, i f o n l y to reveal the types o f human interaction w i t h place through the naming o f place. 16 I am asked the question, "where is your post -postcolonia l ism i n the above analys is?" First , the tone o f the response o f the speaker i n the poem is not one o f resistance per se, or o f "postcolonial literature as corrective i n its resistance" (Mo ss , Intro 8). I don ' t sense corrective i n Stafford's poem, corrective as agenda, as po l i t i ca l . I read bemusement. I read response. I don ' t read annoyance. I read the descr ipt ion o f a system o f naming , a n a m i n g that stories i n response to the two-dimensional i ty o f cartography's naming . I do not read pol i t i ca l project: y o u will become aware o f the inadequacies o f your o w n system o f naming . I read the art iculation o f a question that creates a space for the anthropologist to entertain alternatives. Second, w h i l e pos tco lon ia l i sm focuses on the degrees to w h i c h those theor iz ing about postcolonia l texts focus on the p r o x i m i t y or separation o f the binar is t ic terms aesthetics and pol i t ics , the b inary opposi t ion o f the terms is not inherently po l i t i ca l . F o r example , a computer programmer cou ld care less about the connotational hierarchies i n the components o f a base two number ing system—Os and I s — i n the po l i t i ca l rendering o f off worse than on, offalse worse than true, or zero less than one, sadly m i s s i n g something that one has. In computer language, zeros and ones function outside o f po l i t i cs , outside o f the tension inherent i n binary opposi t ion. The indefinite article " a " i n " h o w can a place have a name" gestures towards two meanings. T h e article refers to the number o f nouns i n a singular name for a singular p l ace—"body covered w i t h mouths" equals four—as w e l l as the mul t ip l e names that name one p l ace—"sa lmon gather" names the same place as "place o f h i d i n g repeatedly" and "one turned over cover ing another" (1.1). Imbuing the article w i t h po l i t i cs constructs a misreading o f the poem: its mul t ip le definit ions are not prescriptive. T h e introductory chapter o f Having Everything Right elaborates o n the open ing l ines o f Stafford's poem: 17 T h e K w a k i u t l people o f the northwest coast had a habit i n their naming . F o r them, a name was story. W e say " V a n c o u v e r , " n a m i n g an i s land for a captain; w e say " V i c t o r i a , " naming a v i l l age for a queen. F o r them, a p lace- name w o u l d not be something that is , but something that happens. T h e y cal led one patch o f ocean "Where S a l m o n Gather ." T h e y ca l led one bend i n the r iver "Insufficient Canoe . " T h e y cal led a certain meadow " B l i n d W o m e n Steaming C l o v e r Roots B e c o m e D u c k s . " (3) The "happen[ings]" o f place cal ls on a specific type o f subject-object interaction, a mode l o f interaction that names w i t h story rather than referent, and a mode l that " Jacko ' s R e a c h " offers as conc lus ion embedded i n the f inal four sentences: " I f there is o n l y one w i l d acre somewhere w e w i l l make that the place. I f they take it away w e w i l l preserve it i n our head. I f there is no such place w e w i l l invent it. That ' s the w a y we are" (100). These l ines tend toward an ar t iculat ion o f something more g loba l than loca l , more universal , i n that the l ines ca l l o n the practice o f s torytel l ing i n naming ; also, everybody tells stories rather than naming arbi trar i ly referencing when a select few name. Y e s . U n i v e r s a l . I a m not t ry ing to suggest, as C h i n u a A c h e b e warns against, that a "universal c i v i l i z a t i on is i n place already" (91). Rather, h o w w e locate ourselves i n place through the stories i n names, and examinat ion o f the s torytel l ing rather than the place i t se l f tends towards a universa l versus a l oca l focus. "The T o w n o f G is not so specia l ," R a s h i d to ld Ha roun as the train carried them towards that ve ry place. " B u t the V a l l e y o f K ! N o w that is different. There are fields o f go ld and mountains o f s i lver and i n the midd le o f the V a l l e y there is a beautiful L a k e whose name, b y the way , is D u l l . " " I f i t ' s so beautiful, w h y i sn ' t it ca l led Interesting?" Ha roun argued; and Rash id , m a k i n g a huge effort to be i n a good m o o d , tried to put on his witch-fingers act. " A h — n o w — t h e Interesting L a k e , " he said i n his most mysterious vo ice . " N o w that's something else again. That ' s a L a k e o f M a n y Names , yes, sir, so it i s . " From Salman Rushdie's Haroun and The Sea of Stories, 25. 18 Locations in the "Jacko's Reach" mode, a reaching mode, rely less on the location itself than the texture of place, the fact that "you don't lose something as palpable as a solid silver cigarette lighter, not,to speak of your innocence, in a place that is purely symbolic" (99). Reaching relies on the experience of place that is less inspired by the place than the named place, the aesthetic in the name—an aesthetic both discursive and sensual— of the word "Jacko's" itself: "just the word alone [that] fed your body's heated fantasies" (96). Names' stories construct human interaction. Not in the power of the place, but the power of the place name, the power in the "consonantal drift" of Jacko's to Jago's that "lurch[es the name] backwards into an earlier, not-quite-forgotten history" of other people's ownership (94). The "we" who "will invent" in those final lines reads as people in general—storytellers, namers— which calls on a more disparate space than the one contained by Jacko's reach. Stories travel, places do not. The "making," "invention," and attempt to "preserve" are also as equally aligned with naming as they are with storytelling as they are with un-located humans engaging in all three. "There Are No Names But Stories" ends with a giving way to transliteration of the stories of place, which is in the poem to say the names of place. Another of Kim Stafford's poems "If We Shed Our Names" describes an anthill while never naming it as such: it names acts of "buildfing]" and "home"-making, it names the hill as a "pyramid" and the home as a "labyrinth, ancient paradise / the size of a footprint," it names what happens in the place as, place like smoke loon on roof small noise of clapping hollow of stopping having many canoe-cedars place of hiding repeatedly cedarbark bedding of cradles mink's grave insufficient canoe sound of swans one turning over covering another going with tide hollow thing at rest hollow of the northwest wind having everything right from Kim Stafford's "There Are No Names But Stories" (italics are Stafford's) 19 w e l l , a place "to practice b y sleight o f hand and scent / intimate pol i t ics w i t h jun iper and r a in" (36). L i l b u r n echoes i n Stafford's poem, doubly: a refusal to name that requires engagement w i t h the story o f place, an invers ion o f subject-object interaction; i n collaborative echo w i t h D o n M c K a y wr i t i ng that "metaphor 's first act is to un-name its subject, reopening the question o f reference" (69). Nei ther echoes are necessari ly place specific. L i l b u r n ' s wilderness , al though located i n Saskatechewan's M o o s e w o o d Sandhi l l s , also calls on wilderness itself, a disparate wi lderness—each o f his successive essays are inspired b y a different locat ion; and i f a nod to the diffusely located "Saska toon" that inspires the "Epektasis ; U n d e r the Instruction o f T h i n g s " essay can be defined as w i l d , w i l d describes, names more than just the named wilderness. L i l b u r n focuses more on the p rob lem o f language, on " language 's quickness to overcome the confl ict between person and w o r l d [...] caus[ing] it to reduce be ing utterly to its names" (9). M c K a y locates an attention to the w o r l d inside metaphor, ins ide language, w h i c h is to say language outside o f place. T H E S T O R Y O F R E S P O N D I N G T O A N E C O C R I T I C A L M O D E L . W i t h a l l this talk o f subjects and objects and referents, it is important to note that I offer naming , i n part, as a response to the ecocr i t ical mode l , w h i c h is , namely and loosely , the practice o f focusing o n the loca l as a strategy to resist the homogen iz ing tendency o f pronouncements o f the g l o b a l . 1 6 Some o f ecocr i t ic i sm's mechanisms function s i m i l a r l y to naming . B o t h i n v o l v e systems o f interdependent interaction. A s systems, both entertain studies o f the system i t se l f as an end-goal, rather than the constituent components o f the 1 6 I also provide the following, more precise, definitions of the ecocritical approach: • Cheryll Goltfelty defines ecocriticism as "the study of the relationship between literature and the physical environment" {The Ecocriticism Reader, "Introduction" xvii). • Glen A. Love writes: "[EJcocriticism, unlike all other forms of literary inquiry, encompasses nonhuman as well as human contexts and considerations. On this claim, ecocriticism bases its challenge to much postmodern critical discourse as well as to the critical systems of the past" {Practical Ecocriticism 1). • Susie O'Brien writes that "While the world, in postcolonial terms, comprises the political and economic structures that shape, and are shaped by, culture, ecocriticism focuses on the interface between culture and the physical environment" {Articulating a World of Difference 140) 20 system proper. B o t h complex (a verb). Lau r i e R i c o u bel ieves that the Pac i f i c Nor thwes t is a "complex eco logy" (16). N a m i n g ' s effects w o r k as a result o f embedding, layer ing, and textual "compress ion" (91) as Ivor Indyk has noticed i n M a l o u f s work . B o t h posit structures embedded i n located and locatable things: place (region) and name (textually or son ica l ly rendered). R i c o u ' s rendering o f " region e m e r g i n g ] i n a layer ing o f stories" (24) runs i n parallel w i th naming ' s layer ing o f stories. B o t h naming and region i m p l y possession. Reg ion ' s lat in root regere, means to rule ( R i c o u 100); namers can arrogate power over the named. Howeve r , w h i l e ecocr i t i c i sm focuses on what is learned from an examinat ion o f the literatures ar is ing f rom geographical ly located places, naming is interested i n h o w cogni t ive schema detach f rom place as a result o f their first be ing a l inguis t ic fo rm then a system; ecologies are not in i t i a l l y l inguis t ic . Eco log ies exist pr ior to naming , naming does no t . 1 7 Or , as Fred W a h writes i n his essay "Is a D o o r a W o r d ? " , "the door and the w o r d part o f the title I hope reveal themselves for what they are: Language" (39). Jack H o d g i n s ' Innocent Cities attends to the l imita t ions o f located naming . L o g a n Sumner ' s return to his w i fe ' s grave, to append and rewrite his o w n headstone's epitaph, contains mul t ip le recognit ions, some b y Sumner, some b y me: 1. The geography o f stone l imi t s the number o f words that can be wri t ten: more words require more stone: meaning ar is ing from the geographical ly contained is not contained b y that geography. 2. The l imitat ions o f space require strategies for smal l spaces meaning large, necessitates e l i s ion , rev is ion , addit ion, expansion o f form, contract ion o f prose, doubl ing , t r ip l ing , conjuncting, embedding. 1 7 Travis V. Mason points out, and I agree, that my resistance to the ecocritical model locating an engagement that arises from a specific place might be the same resistance I have to postcolonialist theory attaching itself to local and specific culture, history, ecology, and politics to resist the homogenizing and universalizing effects of colonial and imperial practices—to "validate the local in terms of its own history in response to the familiar notion that history happened elsewhere" (Moss 9) or happened everywhere. 21 3. Each of Sumner's successive changes are a product of a recognition of the incompleteness of his previous etchings, a fluid form of naming, naming that changes through experience, across time, where unnaming equals naming. 4. Sumner's addition of clauses, sentences, erasure and replacement of single words is a linguistic recognition, recognition that language tends to describe moments of stasis, not process. 5. Sumner changing " A L W A Y S " to " O F T E N " embraces not only those instances when our guiding rubric fail, but allows the eventual, which is to say inevitable, failure of meaning and form. 6. Sumner's use of the conjunctive " B U T " and " A N D " textualize a strategy of approach where the futility of static naming is revealed, a strategy of process and correction, of approach without arrival, explanation without certitude. Alternatively, David M a l o u f s and T im Lilburn's "as i f narrative strategy is similar. 6a. The "as i f in T i m Lilburn's title (naming) of his essay "L iv ing in the Wor ld as i f it Were Home" expands and contracts meaning, reaches outward to contextualize an approach to l iving in the rather large world, and simultaneously brings close by defining the world as home. The "as," as simile, is aligned with metaphor. Lilburn is always already a poet; he articulates his " l iv ing in the world as i f it were home" with a tool-box made heavy with metaphor, metaphor that is, once again, aligned with naming. "Let the way the golden bean, wo l f wil low, snowberry, the deer present themselves to you," Li lburn writes, "be seeing them" (21). 1 8 Let their names, as language, as written text, as text written by human, 1 8 A written response to "be seeing them": "is something wrong here?" The problem with Lilburn's approach is that it is foreign to us, smacks of gestures towards discourses of "being one with the pickle." I think Lilburn wants us to mute the subject-object binary (in much the same way that McKay does) and let how the flora and fauna present themselves to us, how they name themselves, their ecology, biology, etc. dictate our reaction to them. They create their own ontology. Here I note that the articulation of this approach is difficult as a result of 22 b y poet, "assert and cance[l] itself, nam[e] the w o r l d then eras[e] the name," but more importantly, let a habitation " i n ["namelessness[es]" (11)] restlessness [a l low a] g l impse [into] that aptness o f confusion before the ungraspable d ivers i ty o f here" (15). A n d the " i f , " as ha l f o f the condi t ional if/then, avoids closure. L i l b u r n is art iculat ing a quest ion (put a " ? " after "home") . The answer - i f indeed such a th ing exists when " l i v i n g i n the w o r l d as i f i t were home ," when l o o k i n g without the contextual baggage o f subject pos i t ion , when wrapping contemplat ion around the question " H o w T o B e H e r e ? " - is less algebraic than process, less conc lus ion than approach or "stance" (21), more contraction b y w a y o f expansion, more focus through "hectic c o m p l e x " (22), more engagement w i t h engagement as perpetual process. 6b. In Remembering Babylon, "as i f peppers the prose (26, 27 , 35, 36, 43 , 48, 63 , 64, 106, 107, et al.). In each art iculation, a previous naming is found incomplete ; what occurs after the "as i f accommodates the change, glosses the shift, processes an expansion o f the form, as w e l l as a l lows that there m a y be alternatives to the modi f ica t ion . " In t ime his c o m i n g among them became another tale they to ld and [Gemmy] w o u l d l is ten to it w i t h a k i n d o f wonder , as i f what they were recount ing had happened ages ago, i n a t ime beyond a l l memory , and to someone else" (27). A s i f conjoins G e m m y ' s "wonder" and analysis o f that wonder, authorizes the analysis, eschews stasis and singularit ies, a l lows imaginat ive interpretation, promotes the interdependence o f stories. A n attention to naming i n texts inverts the ecologica l approach; al though they articulate different strategies towards the same enlightenment. Eco log ie s and the people w h o name them require an examinat ion o f the economica l , industr ial , geographical , or eco log ica l components o f place that are required when people " learn more names" ( R i c o u 84), w h i c h is the binary imbued in language itself: the construction of the sentence marked by the paradox of fragmentation gesturing towards wholeness. 23 to say learn more stories i n place. The end-goal o f an ecological mode is to learn more about place, subsequently learning about ourselves in place. The. end-goal o f a study o f naming is to learn more about the narrative strategy itself, the aesthetics, text 's texturality, and what naming as narrative and strategy says about us. N a m i n g a l lows an examinat ion o f w r i t i n g and storytel l ing, not necessari ly a s torytel l ing and naming l inked to place, but a naming that applies to mul t ip le places at once, that is cogni t ive rather than demonstrative. A l t h o u g h convinc ing , R i c o u ' s observat ion requires gloss ing: " S o even when we have learned a l l the names, w e w i l l , o f course, not have learned a defini t ive word , but a set o f l imi t s and poss ib i l i t ies—poss ib i l i t ies that w i l l exceed l i m i t s " (84). I bel ieve that the stories i n names not the learning o f names themselves are what engender expansion, where naming facilitates an unc lenching and assembles interaction. N a m i n g as a narrative strategy offers entry into the c rack ing o f a s ign ' s crust, the d igg ing into the conceptual models o f the universe that inform the naming i n order to a l l ow the readers' reflection i n the bot tom o f the w e l l o f a name to u p w e l l . T i m L i l b u r n authorizes an approach s imi la r to R i c o u ' s , one born o f names i n places: " w e should learn the names for things as a m i n i m u m — n o t to fu l f i l l taxonomies but as acts o f courtesy, for mus ica l reasons, entering the gesture o f decorum" ( " G o i n g H o m e " 184). T i m L i l b u r n is a poet: names are mus ica l , their sonic f o r m rhy thmica l ly peaks and troughs beyond the sum o f its f i l l i n g o f whi te space on the page, names' mezzo-rhythms are forward/lateral. Bu t , as w e have seen, K i m Stafford is able to create m u s i c about an ant h i l l without ever n a m i n g it as such. The mus i c for Stafford is i n the stories w i t h i n names. L e a r n i n g names can absolve the learning o f names w i t h i n stories. F o r example , i n Remembering Babylon M r . Frazer asks G e m m y to teach h i m the A b o r i g i n a l names for flora. M r . Frazer ' s interest is taxonomical , learning a l l the names to 24 wri te them d o w n and order them. G e m m y , on the other hand, listens to what is beh ind the names. G e m m y believes that M r . Frazer "translates" objects f rom a "d imens ion w h i c h was a l l effort, sweat and dirt, and grubbing w i t h your na i l s " into "outl ines on the page that were a l l pure spirit , the product o f stillness and silent concentrat ion" (66). Howeve r , the "entries i n M r . Frazer ' s field notebook g ive no indica t ion o f the condit ions under w h i c h they were made . . . do not suggest that what is be ing recorded belongs st i l l to the untamed wi lderness" (128). G e m m y ' s reading o f text as a dis t i l la t ion o f an object 's fo rm is both a reading and a reading into, one control led b y the w a y he interacts w i t h the practice o f naming . N a m i n g for M r . Frazer is not transformation, it is s imple nominat ion , s imple enumerative taxonomy. T h e w o r l d attached to names and the names themselves, for G e m m y , contains " l igh t , " "energy," "spir i t , " and "shadow" (68). See ing it as such requires a "sensi t ivf i ty] to this deal ing between name and spir i t" (67). Sensi t ivi ty: another name for awareness. M r . Frazer k n o w i n g a l l the names does not a l l ow h i m access to G e m m y ' s set o f possibi l i t ies i n an object 's name. W h i l e neither G e m m y nor M r . Frazer are aware o f their strategies o f naming , G e m m y ' s strategy a l lows mul t ip l i c i ty , a name's fuzzy boundaries, boundaries that inc lude the poss ib i l i ty for the spirit w o r l d , an expansion across planes o f real izat ion, or at least beyond the seen. I am uncomfortable w i t h L i l b u r n ' s " d e c o r u m , " 1 9 i n fact, w i t h propriety i n general. A n admiss ion: I can not remember proper names. A form's t axonomy eludes me. T h e people or things names attach to do not attach for me; they are not their latches o f be ing . F o r m e to learn a l l the names is an insurmountable obstacle. I do, however , remember stories, the stories attached to people or things. I ask that a l l m y students come to m y office 1 9 A more accurate definition of Lilburn's "decorum" is a desire for an approach that requires respect and humility rather than an enforced propriety. 2 0 Carson applies the metaphor specifically to adjectives. I use names in place of the adjective and people in place of the noun. 25 for a f ive minute meet ing i n order that I see their faces and attach their answer to the quest ion " te l l me something specif ic about y o u r s e l f to their faces. One has a fear o f c lowns , one rides uni -cycles d o w n mountains, one came to Canada from K o r e a , whose capital c i ty is Seoul , but she is not f rom Seoul . I k n o w their faces; I k n o w the stories that latch to their beings. I forget their names. The i r possibi l i t ies exist outside their names, exceed the l imi t s that any name describes or prescribes for them. The i r strategies I remember—their stories name them. nu 26 D e f i n i t i o n 2 named [f. NAME v . 1 + -ED.] a. Men t ioned b y name. C h a p t e r 2 Constellating: Parts of Speech in Parallax W h a t is an adjective? Nouns name the w o r l d . V e r b s activate the names. Adject ives come from somewhere else. T h e w o r d adjective (epitheton i n Greek) is i t se l f an adjective meaning "place on top," "added," "appended," " impor ted ," " fore ign." Adject ives seem fa i r ly innocent additions but look again. These smal l imported mechanisms are i n charge o f attaching everything i n the w o r l d to its place i n particularity. T h e y are the latches o f being. O f course there are several different ways to be. from Anne Carson's Autobiography of Red, 4. T H E S T O R Y O F N A M I N G P A R T S O F S P E E C H . In " Jacko ' s R e a c h " M a l o u f stories the same questions that I ask i n m y int roduct ion: namely, "what is l eak ing out o f a name and naming?" (besides the pol i t ica l ) and " h o w is the texture w i t h i n naming wri t ten and read?" and "can names be stories?" and the coro l la ry question "can naming be s torytel l ing?" "Jacko ' s R e a c h " also proposes some interesting answers. A l t h o u g h the answer to the last two questions is a decided yes for M a l o u f (and Hodgins ) , at this stage the " h o w " and "what" questions function to textually locate the strategy—namely, examin ing and unpack ing the stories i n names—whi le s imul taneously examin ing the function o f the strategy itself. T o name a beginning. H o w do writers name? O r more accurately, what text i n a story signals naming employed? The fo l l owing inexhaust ive l ist begins to locate naming ' s ub iqu i ty i n w e l l wri t ten stories: 27 1. V o c a b u l a r y employed that contains the root words "name," " c a l l , " " term," and " k n o w , " name. 2. N a m i n g occurs i n the referencing o f se l f or the naming o f else s ignaled b y the verb "to be," a verb that contains identity, sameness, algebraic balance, but also metaphor: for example, "I am [Name] , " or " T h i s is [article] [Name] . " 3. W r i t i n g characters names those characters: for example, characters articulate difference, w h i c h is often signaled b y negation, and named w i t h the prefixes "un- , " " i n - , " and the adverb "not": for example, "I am not you/that" functions to name the character proper and name the character un ique ly i n opposi t ion to something else. 4. Preposi t ions signal naming i n that preposit ions are spatial, relat ional . 5. L i s t s , as t axonomica l structures, name, Recipes , w i t h their lists both i n what they inc lude and what they 0 f ingredients and instructional verb exclude. phrases for the combinat ion thereof, 6. Hyphens s ignal naming , or more r a r e l y t a k e i n t o account the s k i l l o f the cook, precisely, the failure o f naming : " m o c k - ' 1 orange" (Innocent 370). 7. N a m i n g is f lagged i n wri ters ' use o f words that mean ambiguously , both denotat ively and connotative, a perceived failure o f naming . 8. Descr ip t ive clauses name. 9. N o u n s name, are names. C o m p o u n d nouns muddy the prec i s ion o f the act o f naming : "maidenhair ," "b lackber ry" (370) "co t tonwood" (371). 28 Adject ives m u d d y the prec is ion again o f a noun 's , compound noun ' s name: "Oregon grape," "Jack pine ," " d e v i l ' s c l u b " (371). 10. Structure names: for example, the ideas o f f raming and embedded framing. 11. A m b i g u o u s demonstratives fai l to name successfully: for example, "It is this, a l l this, that w i l l go under . . . " ("Jacko 's R e a c h " 99). 12. I ta l ic izat ion, ho ld ing , under l in ing , surrounding w i t h "scare quotes" are a setting apart that names. T H E S T O R Y O F T H E V E R B " T O R E - C O G N A T E . " N a m i n g embeds stories i n the same w a y that names/signs carry coextensive definit ions. Put another way , names as frames, structural frames/containers, are both creative and cont ro l l ing . T h e question then is h o w do authors make new out o f restrictive structures? H o w do authors ' re-cognate '? H o w do authors articulate and textualize their recogni t ion? T H E S T O R Y O F A L A T E R A L S T O R Y . A lateral story. I was first introduced to the idea o f the real i ty o f con t ro l l ing structures i n L a u r a M o s s ' s graduate course on South A f r i c a n Literatures. T h e apartheid regime i n South A f r i c a is not yet history i n South A f r i c a , the impl ica t ions and memor ies o f the atrocities perpetrated i n its name are pa lpably present. Ingrid de K o k wri tes that "the apartheid state's discourse m a y have become so deeply introjected that its constructions and representations s t i l l determine the w a y w e define ourselves n o w i n space and t ime" (70). T h i s is a def in i t ion that transfers into wr i t ing . Or , put another way, "g iven the to ta l iz ing and introjective power o f apartheid, its social controls and b inary emphases, is a postapartheid imagina t ion even poss ib le?" (de K o k , Standing) Put another way , i n another context, B e n O k r i writes that " w e l i v e b y stories, we also l i ve i n them" (46). Th i s pronouncement is 29 written i n a chapter t i t led "The Joys o f Story te l l ing I" and i n a book cal led A Way of Being Free (1997). O k r i continues about the power o f stories to facilitate change, One w a y or another we are l i v i n g the stories planted i n us early or a long the way , or w e are also l i v i n g the stories w e planted - k n o w i n g l y or u n k n o w i n g l y - i n ourselves. W e l i ve stories that either g ive our l ives meaning or negate it w i t h meaninglessness. I f we change the stories w e l i ve by, quite poss ib ly w e change our l ives . (153) The j o y and freedom is i n the mo ld ing , crafting, agency i n storytel l ing that changes l ives . A mes amis rwandais emportes par l a tourmente Emer i ta , A n d r e , C y p r i e n , Raphael , Landoua ld , Helene , Me thode A quelques heros obscurs qui v ivent toujours. Lou i se , M a r i e , Stratton, V i c t o r Finalement , a Gen t i l l e qui me servit des oeufs o u de l a biere et dont j e ne sais si elle est morte o u vivante. J'ai v o u l u parler en votre nom. J'espere ne pas vous avoir trahis. epigraph to G i l Courtemance's Un dimanche a la piscine a Kigali, 7. T o m y R w a n d a n friends swept away i n the maels t rom Emer i ta , Andre , C y p r i e n , Raphael , Landoua ld , Helene, Me thode T o a few unsung heroes s t i l l l i v i n g Lou i se , M a r i e , Stratton, V i c t o r F i n a l l y , to Gen t i l l e , w h o served m e eggs and beer and cou ld be dead or a l ive , i f o n l y I k n e w I have tried to speak for y o u I hope I have not fai led y o u Patricia Claxton's translation of epigraph to A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali ("nom" is not translated as such) 2 ' F a c e d w i t h the imposi t ions on storytel l ing that South A f r i c a exemplif ies , that B e n O k r i warns against, and that " Jacko ' s R e a c h " attends to when it concludes "there has to be some 2 1 To speak for someone is to speak in their name. Why? Accountability? To attach what is said to the speaker? To locate the source—the preposition "in" functions spatially. Perhaps "in" functions to elaborate by conjoining a more precise definition to the ambiguously rendered preposition "for": "for" variously indicates purpose, constitution, being, suitability, representing, duration of time, and concerning. 30 place where that is poss ib le ," the demonstrative enc i rc l ing both the "p re sen ta t ion ] " and " i n v e n t i o n ] " o f stories because "that's the w a y we are" (100), the f o l l o w i n g question arises: h o w do writers o f stories wri te outside o f framed attention, where is a storyteller 's agency, and how does one enact a naming that contains stories? I have been arguing that an attention to naming 's assumed transparencies and impl ic i t , storied possibi l i t ies i n " Jacko ' s R e a c h " performs a re-cogni t ive function, makes certain occlusions v i s ib le . N a m i n g i n M a l o u f s story, naming as story, is an alternative to b inary structure (most famously articulated i n b ib l i ca l systems), reveals the index ing between b inary pronouncements b y art iculat ing binaries i n paral lax, bo th paradoxica l ly and i n paral le l . K i n g suggests that writers l i k e M o m a d a y , and I argue M a l o u f and Hodg ins , suggest "other ways o f i m a g i n i n g the w o r l d " — notice both the story and schema leak ing out the " i m a g i n i n g " — " w a y s that do not depend so m u c h on opposi t ions as they do on co-operations" and the subsequent " tanta l iz ing question[s]" this approach raises ( K i n g 110). One o f K i n g ' s questions is "just h o w w o u l d w e manage a universe i n w h i c h the attempt to destroy e v i l is seen as a fo rm o f insan i ty?" (110). " R e l a x , " he says o n the next page, "It 's o n l y f i c t ion" (111): his relax is a r ecogn iz ing o f the dif f icul ty i n attending to, w h i c h is to say the inevitable transformation of, one 's perceptual schematic. THE STORY OF PARALLAX. R e l a x , I say, I am o n l y quot ing somebody who employs i rony when he cal ls his s torytel l ing f ic t ion . I rony reveals the tension process requires. A l o n g w i t h K i n g ' s theor iz ing about stories and s torytel l ing (which is to say his te l l ing stories about t e l l ing stories), I have found the idea o f "para l lax" to be helpful i n conceptual iz ing h o w naming as story works as an alternative strategy, as an a-binaristic approach, w h i c h is to say contains less b inar ied th ink ing (object/referent) than indexable, complex , process, storied th inking . Firs t , paral lax 31 is an astronomical term and as such connotes constellations o f meaning rather than linear meaning: a constel lat ion that contains paral le l , paradox, parable, perception, and praxis , five ideas not two. Paral lax is defined as "the apparent displacement or the difference i n apparent di rect ion o f an object as seen from two different points not on a straight l ine w i t h the object" (Merr iam-Websters) . T o make this def in i t ion more present for the reader, perform the f o l l o w i n g experiment: raise a finger six inches from the tip o f your nose; close one eye and notice the pos i t ion o f your finger; close the other eye and notice h o w the finger appears to change its locat ion; repeat steps two and three and your finger appears to m o v e f rom side to side. The "percept ion" i n para l lax ' s def ini t ion is b i o l o g i c a l l y control led b y the physics o f depth perception: three d imensional space is seen as such as a result o f a c o m b i n i n g what each eye sees: engaging w i t h the physics o f sight forces the participant to engage w i t h the system that controls the seeing o f an image through two eyes as one. T h e "percept ion" i n para l lax ' s def ini t ion is also made fu l l when connected to cogni t ive schema. Further, paral lax contains the vestiges o f two words : paral lel and paradox. M e a n i n g product ion informed b y a conceptual mode l is meaning product ion that runs in paral lel w i t h the model itself. Paradoxica l meaning assumes separation, assumes that objects are bounded and cannot occupy the same space at the same t ime. W h e n names name paradoxica l ly , for example, when a name does not act as a s ingle referent for a s ingle story, or when a writer writes a w o r d whose ambiguous ly constructed mean ing draws on its mul t ip le denotative and connotative definit ions, a cogni t ive schema is also articulated, one i n w h i c h storytellers as Observer 2's Ooserver 1 view Observer 1 's view of the object, with respect to the background, will be different from Observer 2's view. The further apart they are, the more pronounced the apparent shift of the foreground object with respect to the apparently fixed background. 32 namers and namers as storytellers are not "bound b y the s i l l y feel ing that i t ' s imposs ib le for two figures to occupy the same space at the same t ime" ( K i n g , qtd. i n R i c o u 43). Spi t De laney ' s be loved " O l d N u m b e r O n e " train and more spec i f ica l ly the ra i l road tracks it rides 22 help to v i sua l i ze para l le l paradox. R a i l w a y tracks run i n para l le l . R a i l w a y tracks runn ing into the ho r i zon seem to merge at their vanish ing point. Recogn i t i on that the van i sh ing point is on ly an i l l u s i o n requires a certain k i n d o f k n o w i n g . Para l lax is a re-cognit ive approach. Recogn i t ion o f textual paral lax as textual strategy functions i n m u c h the same w a y that "Jacko ' s R e a c h , " a s ingle name for a s ingular paral lel place, contains mul t ip le embedded stories. C h i n u a A c h e b e ' s parable, then, about l ions producing their o w n historians serves an epis temological and pedagogical function, requires recogni t ion o f the power o f the stories i n names to control perception. The recogni t ive moment refracts the reader's conceptual m o d e l o f the universe back at them, makes readers aware o f h o w their doing , their praxis , is control led b y a set o f constructed absolutes that are neither real , nor innate. A n d f ina l ly , praxis also c lamors i n the po lyphony o f paral lax. The do ing i n paral lax is naming and storytel l ing i n paral lax, the w r i t i n g ( in m y case) or t e l l ing ( in K i n g ' s case) o f names that are stories. Railroad, American nomenclature. Railway, Canadian naming. Riddles in the Dark "Does it guess easy? It must have a compet i t ion w i t h us, m y preciousss! I f precious asks, and it doesn' t answer, we eats it, m y preciouss. I f it asks us, and we doesn' t answer, then we does what it wants, eh? W e shows it the w a y out, yes!" .. .but B i l b o s i m p l y cou ld not think o f any question w i t h that nasty wet co ld th ing sit t ing next to h i m , and p a w i n g and p o k i n g h i m . . . "Wha t have I got i n m y pocke t?" he said aloud. H e was ta lk ing to himself , but G o l l u m thought it was a r iddle , and he was fr ightful ly upset. " N o t fair! not fair!" he hissed. "It isn ' t fair, m y precious, is it, to ask us what i t ' s got i n its nassty l i t t le pocketses?" from J. R. R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, 79-84. T o explicate further, a textual example. The pref ix re- offers another site o f paral lax. The defini t ion o f re- is paradoxical . R e - has two co-extensive and co-existent defini t ions: that o f "back [and] backward" and that o f "again [and] anew." Re - , i n this case then, and that I argue exists i n the re- i n re-cogni t ion 's case, betrays the tension between two cogni t ive systems, and attempts to articulate both i n order to neither be control led b y the l imi ta t ions o f the former nor ignore the former i n the art iculat ion o f the latter. Response, i n the fo rm o f story, makes anew w h i l e recogniz ing and recasting the o ld . M a l o u f writes that the ab i l i ty to " re- form" (98) requires the abi l i ty to see ghosts i n people, and l ikens it to "hav ing the power to see into someone 's pocket" (99). M a l o u f wri tes o f a part icular type o f reader, one w h o is aware o f the "between" (99), aware o f the texture and constel lat ion i n names, the story i n names. F red W a h ' s reading o f a " ' r e - ' poet ics" is i n its " i n c i s i v e " qualit ies: its mandibles "cut[ing] into memory and image to recuperate, recover, and especial ly, re-insist on the presence o f the terms of . . . contact" (Faking It 108). T o make one aware o f what is happening behind and i n text itself: its strategies, its nuances, its textures, its terms. At tend ing to the l ines "re / cogni t ion" i n R o y M i k i ' s poem "his tory is w e , " W a h asks the f o l l o w i n g question, "can M i k i ' s "re / cogn i t i on" . . . become the " i g n i t i o n " such a conscious poetic seeks to enact" (123). I argue that the stories w i t h i n names function to tinder re- cogni t ion. THE STORY OF TALES OF THE ARABIAN NIGHTS AND FRAMING. That there are metaphorical stories i n names offers alternatives to, responds to naming ' s cont ro l l ing framing. Lateral evidence comes i n the fo rm o f a formal attention to Tales of the Arabian Nights. Sultan Schahriar marries a w o m a n w h o "deceives" h i m — although an inf ide l i ty is assumed, the act o f deception is never named. T h e Sul tan decides to marry a new w o m a n every evening and have her executed i n the m o r n i n g b y his grand- 34 v i z i r . A l o n g comes Scheherazade, the grand-vizir 's daughter, who asks to be the next br ide i n order to stop deaths that are embarrassing the communi ty : " I f I fa i l , m y death w i l l be a glorious one, and i f I succeed I shall have done a great service to m y country" (www.arabiannights.org). T H E S T O R Y O F TALES OF A THOUSAND AND ONE NIGHTS A N D F R A M I N G . O n the m o r n i n g after her wedding , the morn ing o f her prescribed death, Scheherazade has asked Dinarzade , her sister, to ask her to tell her one last story before she dies. T h e Sultan compl ies w i t h Dinarzade ' s w i s h i n the fo rm o f Scheherazade's s torytel l ing. T h e story o f the "Merchan t and a G e n i i , " a story about a merchant w h o accidental ly k i l l s a G e n i i ' s son wi th a casual ly discarded date pit , and the G e n i i w h o seeks the Merchan t ' s death, and a death w h i c h is stayed as a result o f the G e n i i ' s interest i n hearing "The Story o f the Fi rs t O l d M a n and o f the H i n d " leads, i n turn, into other stories w h i c h must also be heard. E a c h successive story is bo rn out o f an uncompleted story. E a c h successive story is embedded i n the t e l l ing o f the previous story l i ke a set o f nested Russ ian do l l s m u c h l i ke "Jacko ' s R e a c h " and " B l a c k s o i l C o u n t r y " embed mul t ip le stories w i t h i n the frame o f their narratives. Structure i n the form o f a constel lat ion o f stories framed b y one story, w i t h one name, requires reading the complex as such, a complex in terweaving and re-forming. T H E S T O R Y O F ALF LAYLA WA LAYLA A N D F R A M I N G . Embedded narratives structurally break frames as a result o f a te lescoping into the frame. N a m e s are po lysemic . N a m e s that contain stories, stories born o f the name and other stories, telescope into the frame o f the name. " Jacko ' s R e a c h " employs a s imi lar f raming and embedding strategy, one that arises out o f Jacko ' s Reach ' s point o f v i e w . " Jacko ' s R e a c h " masquerades as the third- M y name is G a n d a l f and G a n d a l f means me. - J. R. R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, 17. 35 person, w i t h an embedded exception. M a l o u f s choice o f point o f v i e w subterfuge is deliberate. T h e vo ice i n the story is both that o f the commun i ty and that o f the reading o f the s ignif icance o f stories to the communi ty . T h e absence o f first-person pronouns and the repetition o f the "our" (93) and " w e " (100) p lura l pronouns convey an ownership more diffuse than ind iv idua l ownership, an ambiguous ownership be l ied not o n l y b y the shared ownership i n the shared populat ing o f the name w i t h stories, but b y the shared access to the stories l eak ing out o f the place name. Jacko ' s R e a c h was p rev ious ly owned b y a single person, " M i s s Hard ie o f P y m b l e " (94). She is accused b y the speaking " they" o f se l l ing the land "for a song" because she was a "Sydneys ider" (94), an outsider. Ownersh ip i n the communi ty i n the fo rm o f an investment i n its stories and myths, and i n this case the specif ic stories and myths both surrounding and emanating from "Jacko ' s R e a c h , " w o u l d have precluded her f rom underva lu ing the investment o f mul t ip le stories i n place, i n name. " S o n g " euphemis t ica l ly and l i teral ly means "not ve ry m u c h money , " but the underva lu ing is a result o f not be ing p r i v y to the value o f the songs i n place names, the songs as stories, as texture. T h i s is , i n part, a failure to read names as stories. I f M i s s Hard ie were to read "Jacko ' s R e a c h " I am certain she w o u l d up her pr ice. Before I noted an except ion to the point o f v i e w . N e a r the beg inn ing o f the m i d d l e o f the story M a l o u f writes a soli tary " I " : " W h e n I was seven or eight years o l d w e used to p l ay Cops and Robbers there" (95-96). I am s t i l l confused b y this pronoun, and I th ink that the confusion is part o f the effect, part o f its mul t ip le effects. T h e story is meant for one speaker, the speaker who recognizes the strategies o f approach i n the communi t ies stories at work . However , the single " I " is subsumed into the many articulations o f "our" and " w e , " the " I " is embedded i n the s torytel l ing, the personal is embedded i n the communa l i n m u c h the same w a y that K w a k w a k a ' w a k w naming muddies the concept o f i nd iv idua l ownership . Stories are 36 myths, both experiential and constructed, to which the entire community has access equally. To close out the embedded frame an embedded story: an adjectival "my" is placed near the end of the middle of the story: "Every fellow of my generation knows Valmay's name" (97). Not only is Valmay's story embedded and surrounded by other stories in place, this story does not belong to the speaker proper, but his generation. The adjective connotes less ownership than membership. The membership allows access to not only the story proper, but the knowledge attached to the story arising from the name "Valmay." The stories mute the telling, exist without a teller in much the same way that an object exists without a namer. Also, the recognition of how naming works imbedded once again in the epistemological "know[ing]" of the name Valmay, which is to say the story of Valmay, is more pedagogical (instructs a field of participants) than individual in that it functions re-cognitively: her name's story is added to the myth structure mutating it. THE STORY OF THE TEXTURED TEXT OF NAMING'S APPROACH. "Jacko's Reach" begins with the sentence, "So it is settled" (93). The sentence doubly names some of the textual strategies in "Jacko's Reach" and other stories, and my approach—structural, conceptual, textual—in that it names, which is to say contains, a story, subject, verb, and object rendered in parallax. The sentence opens out onto multiple meanings—denotative, connotative, conceptual—all of which draw on naming as a narrative strategy that is aligned with storytelling: the telling of stories about Jacko's Reach as well as Jacko's Reach as the place that "evoke[s]" (96) stories. A Jacko's Reach that is multiple stories happening at once muddies the biblical and linguistic tendency for precise meaning, for the single word, single referent binary, for names that two-dimensionally frame. Why does Microsoft Word not recognize "namer" as a word? 37 T H E S T O R Y O F SO. "So it is settled." "So" signals analytical telling in a similar way that "Once upon a time..." signals quest narrative, and "It was a dark and stormy night..." signals either ironic or cliched writing. The "so" breaks silence, a narrative technique transposed into written text from oral storytelling, opens up a sonic space that fills with "listen to me, I have something to say." So begins a telling in much the same way that a name invites diving into its story pool. This "so" also evokes Thomas King's examination of the strategies in and function of storytelling in his text The Truth About Stories: "the truth about stories," King writes multiple times, "is that that's all we are" (2, 32, 62, 92, 122, 153). At the beginning of each chapter24 the same story is told, a story about the world sitting on a turtle's back. The story changes both in the telling—in the "voice of the storyteller," in the "details," in the "order of events" (2)—and in the reaction of a listener—a girl laughs (2), a boy laughs (31), a woman smiles (61), a man takes notes (91), a woman "chuckle[s] and rock[s] her baby" (121). The telling of stories cooperates with the listening to stories, and vice versa. The emphasis is equally on the storyteller's craft as it is on the listener's receptivity and analytical prowess, analysis that understands that "how it is we imagine the world in the way we do, how it is we imagine ourselves [is] through our stories" (95). Stories implicate cognitive schema. King's stories are also aligned with naming. For example, the term Indian. You see, Columbus didn't find Indians in North America, the name mistakes North America for India. This linguistically nominal mistake was not rectified, which is to say restoried, until recently. King also talks about how envisioning a name devoid of multiple stories is a failure to name: "the panorama of cultures, the innumerable tribes, and the complex of languages made it impossible for North Americans to find what they most desired. A single Indian who could 2 4 "Lecture" might be a more accurate naming here as the chapters were initially written for the 2003 Massey Lectures aired on CBC. 38 stand for the w h o l e " (79). W h a t fo l lowed was an attempt to j am-pack the my th o f Indians into a my th i ca l name, to fit the idea o f Indian into an already exis t ing cogni t ive schema rather than lett ing the cosmic mistake inspire an awareness o f the failure o f the cogni t ive schema to incorporate new data, new people. D a v i d M a l o u f s story " B l a c k s o i l C o u n t r y " contains two stories i n paral lax. Firs t , however, the title connotes the impress ion o f names i n opposi t ion. B l a c k s o i l country is nested w i t h i n the larger country o f Aus t ra l i a , but nested i n opposi t ion: country comes f rom La t in contra against, on the opposite side. " B l a c k s o i l Coun t ry" understories Aus t r a l i a ' s story i n the same w a y that stories understory names. T h e precise imprec i s ion o f the place name title (the area is never geographical ly named, o n l y located i n terms o f its p r o x i m i t y to another place " D o u b l e B a y " [120], a narrative strategy that betrays systems' re la t iv i ty and re la t iona l i ty ) 2 5 parallels the two stories the place name contains, two stories to ld b y a single narrator. Storyteller Jordan M c G i v e r n introduces his te l l ing as a " show[ ing ] " (116). H e introduces h i m s e l f b y saying "Jordan m y name i s " (116). Yoda-syntax . Linguis t s refer to this structure as fronting. The fronting either presents the fronted material as " o l d , " or gives a "new" interpretation o f what is "left-ed' as conclus ive , or both. H i s name is a transposed object. The subject replaces the object; the name is the object not the subject. T h e subject names the story embedded i n his name. T h e name is the story. T h e reader is to ld i n i t i a l l y that " b l a c k s o i l country [is] open, empty" as w e l l as "c rowded wi th ghosts, figures h idden away i n the folds o f i t " (116), a both/and structure, a paral lax structure. The storied land unspoken as a result o f ghosts that do not speak but whose presence manifests as a sensing 2 5 Malouf uses this narrative strategy with Remembering Babylon's unnamed town: the town does not have a street, it has an "area between" (5): "not yet a street [with] no name" (5). The town only has meaning in relation to other named places and all that they stand for: "Bowen," twelve miles off and the "Crown" (5) - "Brisbane," six hundred miles away and the "Law" (9) - the unknown and urmamable "Absolute Dark," that stands for "nightmare rumours, [and] superstitions" (3) - and "Comet River," the death of "nineteen souls" (42). These places, other places, act as referents. 39 that makes "hair c rawl on [the] neck" (116). Ghosts are metaphorical i n this case; ghosts are stories. T h e narrator i n " Jacko ' s R e a c h " talks about h o w watch ing involves a formal attention, a seeing o f ghosts i n forms, the forms o f people i n this case: seeing invo lves "re- form[ing], i n a ghostly w a y " i n order to see the "darker," "deeper," "submerged" (98), ghosted images w i t h i n people, the ghosts as stories i n their named selves. T h e ghosts i n places, not the places themselves. S imi l a r ly , readers learn that the narrator o f " B l a c k s o i l Coun t ry" is a ghost. Jordan M c G i v e r n is k i l l e d as retribution for his father k i l l i n g a b lack messenger i n c o l d b lood . THE STORY OF IT. " S o it is settled." T h e " i t , " the imprecise pronoun reference gestures towards both the place, J acko ' s R e a c h as unt i l led , untamed, w i l d land, and the loca l counc i l ' s decision regarding the place, a dec i s ion to "clear [it] and b u i l [ d ] " (93) a shopping m a l l . T h e mul t ip l i ca t ion o f meaning here, the control led ambigui ty i n unspecif ic p ronoun use gestures towards a refusal o f s imple teleologies. T h e pronoun, i n substitution for certain perceived, mul t ip le , precise nouns, a l l ows that the pronoun cou ld be replaced b y other nouns—"story te l l ing ," " k n o w [ i n g ] " (97), In this awareness o f things ' oddness and i n your compunct ion over your separation f rom this is a let t ing- be-of- the-world w h i l e y o u are turned fu l ly toward it. from T i m Li lburn 's " L i v i n g in the Wor ld as i f it Were Home," 22. "under" (99)—nouns whose meanings themselves need examinat ion. H u m a n s are uncomfortable w i t h mul t ip le definit ions, w i t h p lura l it, w i th undefined, unnamed itness. T h e ambiguous ly named m o b i l i z e s interaction. Al te rna t ive ly , salal 's "ve ry commonplace fecundity compels [Laur ie R i c o u ' s ] attention" (80). N a m i n g employed a certain w a y eases, comforts. N a m i n g incomple te ly employed satisfies the need for guaranteed meaning . G e m m y , the outsider c h i l d i n M a l o u f s Remembering Babylon, threatens the c o m m u n i t y not 40 because he is violent but because his presence unintent ional ly subverts, calls into question the communit ies cogni t ive schema, forces se l f and wor ld- re f lex iv i ty , forces an examinat ion o f their naming strategies. V i s u a l difference ( G e m m y is m i s s i n g an eyebrow - "strange h o w unimportant eyebrows can be, so l o n g as there are two o f them" [8], he is also asymmetr ica l as a result o f one o f his legs be ing shorter than the other), interactive difference i n the form o f not be ing soc ia l ized ("when he got exci ted he je rked about as i f he were be ing w o r k e d b y strings" [8]), and aural and l inguis t ic difference ("the mere half-dozen words o f E n g l i s h [Gemmy] cou ld cough up [...] mismanaged and distorted" [40]) force the commun i ty to ask a "harder question": " c o u l d y o u lose it? N o t just language, but if. It" (40). T h e absence o f fami l ia r i ty breeds diagnosis, explanat ion, recogni t ion o f a rel iance on the stories i n the conceptual schema that function to organize the interactions o f the schema's members and interaction w i t h the environment the members be long to. [T]here is no end to [the naming] language. . . The sea's name is in ien , w e l l and good. B u t what w e ca l l the Inmost Sea has its o w n name also i n the O l d Speech. S ince no th ing can have two true names, in i en can mean on ly ' a l l the sea except the Inmost Sea. ' A n d o f course it does not mean even that, for there are seas and bays and straits beyond count ing that bear names o f their o w n . . . [T]hat what g ives . . . power to w o r k magic , sets the l imi ts o f that power. from Ursula K. Le Guin's A Wizard of Earthsea, 51. A n engagement w i t h an object 's quiddi ty , rather than its name, mob i l i ze s engagement w i t h its itness, requires recogni t ion o f the stories imbedded w i t h i n it. Wha t fo l lows the "It" are several answers proposed b y the taxonomist teacher M r . Frazer and framed b y an either/or log ic , answers, as it were, r e l y i n g on the faulty log ic o f phrenology. The either/or is i ron i ca l l y constructed as the first opt ion requires ascr ibing veraci ty Mas te r H a n d i n the Cour t o f Seeming: I l lus ion fools the beholder ' s senses; it makes h i m see and hear and feel that the th ing is changed. Bu t it does not change the thing. T o change this rock into a j e w e l , y o u must change its true name. A n d to do that... even to so smal l a scrap o f the w o r l d , is to change the w o r l d . from Ursula K. Le Guin's A Wizard of Earthsea, 47. 41 to a phrenological reading and the second option requires belief in linguistic phrenology, and the third option, a further irony, is written "or both of these" (40). The either/or is already both, option one is the same as option two, a singular both. The choice is the same. The oppositionality of an either/or structure composed of a singularity posits asymmetrical symmetry, although in this case the analyzer is unaware of this fact. W. H. New offers, instead, a both/and structure, or at least its recognition, and a recognition of its hectic complexity. New used to read the conclusion articulated in a story as "failure of nerve or desire" (About Irony 48). New changes his mind. He now believes that the relationship, or conflict, between two opposing identities "functions more effectively as a sign of the uncertainty of change as well as of inevitability of transformation. Not either/or but 26 both/and [...] of interconnection rather than but sometimes including resistance" (48-49). I see New's both/and recognition a component of understanding the storying of names: New breaks binary logic in favor of tertiary logic. Employing a similar logic, Malouf takes this realization a step further by using a series of linked sentences that begin with the conjunction "or," an or that destabilizes the binary of the conditional either/or. Understanding occurs when the narrator realizes that "Jacko's Reach" can't be purely "symbolic" because there are other options: Jacko's is also (or) a place where multiple, palpable events occur, either x ("a lost lighter") or y (a "gash[ed] foot") or z ("waiting" and "humiliation") [99]. Multiple or-ings mutes the "either" half of the either/or binary by implying the potential for a series of unending ors: the conjunctive condition doesn't prescribe a set of limits. Perhaps the perpetual or-ing's approach is valued, a textual value leaking out of or's aural homonymic shift into ore. To hear the transmutation, however, 2 6 The particular story does not matter—the strategy does: however, the story is Margaret Atwood's poem "Migration: C.P.R." 42 requires l is tening, l i s tening to text and/or/or. . . h o w the text 's strategies engage w i t h meaning making , naming . M r . Frazer listens b y half. M r . Frazer is not aware o f the l imi t s that he places on h imse l f as a result o f his be ing wedded to the descript ive l o g i c naming w i t h an either/or structure engenders. L i t t l e else than the taxonomy o f fo rm leaks out o f a name for M r . Frazer. Awareness . T r i c k y business that. Percept ion. T r i c k y business a g a i n . 2 7 Para l lax : stars' locations are perceived displaced, but o n l y apparently so. W h e n the f ie ld o f experience is compared to the f ie ld o f the schema and found l a c k i n g and inadequate, the experience is usual ly modi f i ed to accommodate the schema. I f w e require o f ourselves that the schema can be f lawed, process replaces the complacency i n f ix i ty . In other words, engagement w i t h narrative strategies, or i n this case strategies o f approach i n general, focuses us less on the pos i t ioning o f our experiences i n a particular schema—I a m part o f X schema and therefore this is h o w I name, h o w the schema authorizes the w a y I a m authorized to approach 1, 2 and 3—than on what is learned about the assumptions embedded i n and inadequacies o f the guiding, explanatory pr inciples i n the schema itself. W h e n the narrator says that " i t is this, a l l this, that w i l l go under" (99) the shopping m a l l to be bui l t on Jacko ' s Reach , "under" is synonymous w i t h embedded, and the fo rm o f " i t , " its pronounal shape, " i t " as transposed subject never defined, gestures towards mul t ip le noun phrases, mul t ip le conceptualizat ions—the stories, the system wi th in w h i c h the stories are imagined, the stories i m a g i n i n g the system, the names that g ive rise to the stories, naming 2 7 For example, Thomas Kuhn's book The Copernican Revolution discusses the power of cosmologies. The Egyptians pictured the earth as an "elongated platter" (5) whose boundaries paralleled the Nile. The Egyptians believed that "circumpolar stars" (those which never dip below the horizon) "know no weariness" and "know no destruction" (6), a storying of stars. "Cosmologies," Kumi writes, "supply both a psychologically satisfying world-view and an explanation of observed phenomena" (7). The implications for cosmologies that are both affectively prescriptive and phenomologically descriptive is important to an understanding of form informing function. If, for instance, crops are harvested when the stars are in a certain configuration, it is very easy to project not only agency onto the stars themselves, but one's happiness as well. 43 as a narrative strategy the unpacks cosmologies , and so on. The repetit ion o f the demonstrative, a repeti t ion that reinforces the imposs ib i l i t y o f complete, perfect demonstrabil i ty, perfect naming , echoes L i l b u r n ' s approach to the subject-object chasm that attempts to turn the human into object and the object into subject (a deer sees h i m "straight through. . . but [he] cannot say h o w [he is] seen" [4]). H i s strategy, so named, is a strategy o f approach, approach w h i c h requires "quiet" (perhaps a quiet i n response to the noise o f the pol i t i ca l , interaction stripped o f inherent pol i t ics ) , "courtesy" (21), "cur ios [ i ty ]" (18) and a "let t ing-be-of-the-world w h i l e [being] turned fu l ly toward i t " (22) i n an examinat ion o f the "thisness o f th ings" (21). L i l b u r n ' s approach requires immers ion (rather than defini t ion) i n the story o f object/place (its o w n story), rather than the overt s torying o f place: I w i l l fit what I see into what I already k n o w . Perhaps the " remember ing" i n Remembering Babylon enacts an examinat ion o f the same k i n d o f approach that L i l b u r n strives for and that the communi ty i n the nove l la rge ly fails at. M o s t o f the commun i ty ' s engagement w i t h what they see, describe, and k n o w is control led by , fit into, what they already k n o w , what they remember. " L o o k at the furrow i n his b row, " the third person omniscient narrator continues an attempt to describe G e m m y ' s thisness, itness. " W a s it a whi te man ' s thought that set it there, or the knowledge o f something (they w o u l d not name it) that cou ld hardly be conceived o f i n a whi te man ' s t h ink ing . . . a th ing y o u cou ld smelF (41). W h i l e synesthetic descript ion resists the subject- object separation required b y syntax outside o f metaphor, that "they w o u l d not name i t " avoids d ic t ion . T o choose the words that w o u l d name the inquisi t iveness, puzzlement , concern, and quest ioning that G e m m y ' s furrowed b row impl ies , to order and to name the b row w o u l d require a re f lex iv i ty , a stepping outside o f se l f and engagement w i t h strategic inadequacies that the commun i ty is not yet capable of. Jordan M c G i v e r n synesthetic 44 k n o w i n g is different. H e a l lows the "breeze" to " touch" h i m " l i k e hands" (122). Jordan decreases the subject-object separation, a l lows the breeze agency over himself . Jordan's l istening translates into the granting o f permiss ion , a vulnerabi l i ty required b y the in t imacy o f touch. T h i s vulnerabi l i ty and in t imacy, I think, requires response to schema that re ly o n "rightful boundaries" (122), a metaphorical response. T H E S T O R Y O F IS, O F M E T A P H O R A N D N A M I N G . " S o it is settled." "Is." The " i s " is , as D o n M c K a y and T i m L i l b u r n w o u l d have it, metaphor, metaphor responding to unambiguous, un-nuanced, normat ive naming . M c K a y believes that a l l naming translates; translation is imprecise; imprec i s ion requires awareness o f the f a l l i b i l i t y o f n a m i n g . 2 8 M r . Frazer ' s translation is just an-other name. Jordan engages wi th synesthetic translation, listens to translation's touch. M c K a y writes that a recogni t ion o f the failure o f names runs i n paral lel w i t h a recogni t ion o f h o w metaphor works . "Me taphor ' s first act," M c K a y writes, and I have quoted before, " i s to un-name its subject, reopening the question o f reference" (69). A l s o embedded i n M c K a y ' s recogni t ion is an attempt to revisi t and revise a Western strategy o f naming that pr iv i leges the namer over the named— "whatever name [Adam] gave to any l i v i n g thing, that was its name" (Genesis 2:19)—and the i r reconci lable , quantifiable, nameable difference manifests fo rmal ly as separation, separation imbued w i t h a metaphorical and tautological mora l i ty that eschews index ing for the polar, b inar ied, d iv i s ib l e and separab le—"God separated the l ight f rom the darkness" (Genesis 1:4) and " G o d ca l led the l ight day, and the darkness he cal led night" (Genesis 1:5). Jordan M c G i v e r n does not d iv ide h i m s e l f f rom b l a c k s o i l country i n the w a y that his P a does. It is his "sort o f count ry" precisely because he "give[s] it a chance to show i t s e l f (121-122) to h i m instead o f impos ing his o w n system o f names on it. McKay is drawing on, in part, Walter Benjamin's "The Task of the Translator." 45 Catherine Martin's 1870 autobiography An Australian Girl reads Australia as a tabula rasa: "The unstoried blank stirs the imagination curiously with dim guesses at the chronicles which may be written of this land in days to come" (qtd. in Ryan 128). There is no recognition that the blank might have its own stories. The imposition is an active attempt to change through the storytelling in names: the imagination is informed by a previous place (England), not the place of which she is writing. Unlike Martin and unlike Jordan's father, Jordan is enamored with the sounds of the place and especially the sounds of a frog which he hears before he sees as a result of its chameleon ability to "take on" (122) the colour of what it clings to. Finding the frog, seeing through its chameleon form is analogous to seeing the stories in names. Jordan enacts frog, becomes a chameleon of place, lets the sounds of place whisper through him. The chameleon metaphor describes a blending with place, frog and human hidden in and by the fabric of place, as well as a taking on of (or listening to) place, 29 letting the stories of place inform the patterns and colours that shape its inhabitance. Also, when Jordan lets the breeze "touch him [like] hands" he engages in metaphor, metaphor that decreases subject-object separation, metaphor that contracts the name "wind" into the "happening]" (Stafford, Having 3) of the "wind." And when Jordan hears day voices and night voices, he distinguishes the two not to enact difference, separates the two not to divide, but enacts individuality to immerse himself in their uniqueness, describes their sounds with a "liked" (122) quality (like, adjective, alike, similar) rather than named quantity. Quantity and quality, tricky business them. In Vis a Vis: Field Notes on Poetry & Wilderness, McKay writes what he calls "A Small Fable" (89) and what is in actuality a 2 9 I also see a parallel here with Wah's articulation of the hyphen as "camouflage." To camouflage the landscape with names does not engage with how names perform. To let the oneself take on the camouflage of place is to learn through place, allowing a closer naming thereof. 46 response to Genesis, or rather a re-storying thereof.30 Adam, after a day of naming vetted by his parent, wakes up in doubt, doubting his names' veracity, doubts the fact of "inexorable order inexorably ordering" (89). Screech owl, Adam realizes, is a "bonehead" name as a result of screech connoting ascension— cf, Adam stories again, a '58 Pontiac Bonneville's sharp braking into an accident—when really the "owl's voice fluttered down... like a little aluminum ladder" (90). The screech of the "little aluminum ladder of [the Screech Owl's] scream" calls "quality... forward," turns the "ladder into an act" (90). The ladder also functions to index a previously unindexed naming strategy. Considering asking his father to accept the "revision," Adam realizes the breaking of his naming strategy's economy, of "spending six words on what was after all one of Creation's smaller owls" (91). Ownership again, the ownership investing in naming. And vision, the vision in revision. Walking in the dark, poked in the eye by a branch, Adam wonders "would everything have to have a day name and a night name?" (91). The fable concludes with Adam almost realizing the failure of a name's naming: hearing little-aluminum-ladder on the night air and its failure to coalesce into "words" his feeling of a "gentle fatal presence," both the story of the name and the names failure to tell the story of his experience. Adam's engagement with the failure of his father's proposed naming strategy unnames, which is to say makes him uncomfortable with the ordering that naming occludes. The Bible's narrative strategy articulates one system of naming. When McKay writes of a naming connected to "homage" and prefers "envisaging rather than naming" (101), he articulates a different strategy of approach, one that attempts to move beyond what he feels to be the closed system of a subject-position feedback loop that reinforces binary separation. McKay's approach proposes replacing the loop with emphases on response and See also Thomas King's "One Good Story That One." 47 recognit ion, on the recognit ive act that posits a new cogni t ive approach and the naming thereof, rather than the pol i t ics o f naming itself. The ghosts in " B l a c k s o i l Coun t ry" are also responses to the B i b l e i n much the same way that the b ' s in Remembering Babylon are. Ghosts are not a part o f B i b l i c a l teachings. The precisely contained realms (although not specif ical ly located) o f heaven, hel l , purgatory and earth and the specif ical ly defined bodies (both i n quantity and quali ty) that they contain does not account for ghosts in the same way that b ib l i ca l strategies o f naming do not account for the stories that w e l l up out o f names. There are many b ' s , both bees and letter b, i n Remembering Babylon. i 1 The letter b. The title o f the book contains three The story o f the bee. M r s . bs. G e m m y , discovered by some chi ldren o f the Hutchenson ' s bees are not only settlement, mistakes a stick that a boy holds as a metaphors for co lon ia l rule—the gun and stammers, " D o not shoot, I am a B - b - singular, algebraic, meanings br i t i sh object!" (3). Three more bs (plus the b i n imp l i ed by a co lon i a l i sm al igned object itself). Stuttered bs—stuttering as failure o f w i t h imper ia l i sm, the ranking o f language, failure o f the form to contain what the object as less than subject, an form defines. M a l o u f is interested in bs both as a approach reinforced by the response to the a, a response, in part, to an absence metaphors o f bee-boxes and o f the ambigui ty imp l i ed by m i d d l i n g spaces in hives: boxes contain, package, Reve la t ion 22 :13—"I am the A l p h a and the Omega , l imi t , ' b o x i f y ' , and hives connote the first and the last, the beginning and the end"—as the h ive-mind , group thought in w e l l as its affinity w i t h the unexamined log ic o f opposi t ion to indiv idual i ty , indexable hierarchies, however arbitrary, i n agency, creativity, and th ink ing pronouncements (served here as definit ions from outside the (bee)box—the bees the O E D ) o f the letter b as either the 2 n Q letter, not the 1 s t (as in the B-side o f an a lbum or the other side), or as "abstract reasoning or hypothetical argumentation" (as in I a. wa lk to the bus, before h. getting on it). I f syntax requires object f o l l o w subject, I th ink M a l o u f aligns the letter b w i t h a naming o f object and the tendency towards objectif icat ion that occurs in the "area between" (Remembering 5), and w i t h the "quest ion" o f h o w does one go about "cover ing the space between [people,] recovering the connect ion" (33). Bes ides the in i t ia l sonic " B - b - b r i t i s h object" (albeit a voca l i za t ion that opens a space for entertaining the possibi l i t ies i n the idea o f object in opposi t ion to subject), in the opening pages o f Remembering Babylon, M a l o u f writes object i n relat ion to G e m m y mul t ip le times: object as mul t ip le parts o f speech gesturing towards more than their definit ions, definitions wrapped-up i n strategies o f approach: G e m m y ' s "object" is " l i k e any other creature's. . . to stay i n [the wor ld] by any means he c o u l d " (25); at times "some object out o f [ G e m m y ' s ] o ld life w o u l d come floating back and bump against h i m " (27), objects meant to remind, 48 also attend to mobi l i ty , transformation, and an interactive approach. F o r Janet, daughter o f the M a c l v o r f ami ly that takes G e m m y in , an experience w i t h bees, or rather what she learns from this experience, "settles" her in the "business" o f bees and " l i f e " (141), bees that transform her life. She is settled by being unsettled. It is a "set t l ing" produced by the unsett l ing inspired not by the bees as agent, as a l legory for empire, but the turning towards herself, an examinat ion o f herself that carries a paral lel real izat ion about faith and be l i e f and communica t ive acts. Janet, farming bees, is swarmed; the bees cover her i n a "crust" (142). Janet does not place herself i n opposi t ion to the bees, does not resist, rebut the that need attention; i n an attempt to fit in , to mute his object ivi ty i n favor o f becoming a subject i n and o f the communi ty he is new too, G e m m y ' s "object . . . was to make h i m s e l f agreeable" (35); the communi ty attempts to identify the object o f G e m m y ' s itness, to place h i m (although not necessarily include) i n the index o f their k n o w i n g . Order ing objects i n the hierarchy o f being leads to comfort. T o br ing together onto a field o f k n o w i n g means to create communi ty , create a system o f interdependency, o f checks and balances, o f certainty o f forms. G e m m y mobi l i zes Jock M c l v e r ' s changing way o f being, w a y o f l is tening and interacting, way o f "see[ing] the w o r l d " (106); the change changes his field o f knowing . H e sees insects perched on blades o f grass, describes them metaphorical ly ( w h i c h destabilizes stable naming), and i n relat ion to his changed se l f (cognit ive self- refractivity): "the d iscovery o f them, the new light they brought to the scene, was a lightness i n h i m . . . l i ke a fo rm o f k n o w i n g he had broken through to" (107). The form is "unnameable," s imultaneously "dis turb[ ing]" and "exhi lara t ing" (107). Jock ' s shift into a mode o f interaction that a l lows, is 49 swarm. The shedding o f the crust changes her. She sheds a particular meaning—named fea r—of the experience and replaces it w i t h another, more nuanced reading. The bees swarm her because o f a mistake: the bees bel ieve her menstruation to be honey: "they think it is honey," she realizes, and then, "i t i s , " she concludes (142). The mistake mobi l izes her understanding that to panic w o u l d be a mistake. Wi l l i ngnes s to a l low the bees their imaginat ion contains a parallel realization, one that entertains the poss ibi l i ty o f the transmutation o f forms. In such an approach, inspired by bees " w i t h a flair for geometry" (192) (rather than algebra, spatial complex rather than linear meaning), is the " P r o b l e m " she comfortable wi th , the unnameable object contains the parallel shift i n his cogni t ive schema, an abi l i ty to not require that his mode o f engagement prescribe def ini t ion on the outside w o r l d . Seeing a b i rd "balanced on a round stone" makes h i m aware o f his place o f observation, o f subject posi t ion, "si t t ing, himself , on a larger stone, also rounded" (107). Jock ' s real izat ion, in part a product o f his real izat ion insulat ing h i m f rom the group- thinking i n his communi ty , comes in the form o f the inadequacy o f words abi l i ty to accurately describe, to reduce objects to the " c o m m o n " : "he cou ld have found no form i n w h i c h to communicate them, outside words" (108)— Jock ' s turning towards language and a l l o f its pitfalls and traps gestures towards the storied potential o f naming. Jock finds balance when he turns towards language, w h i c h is to say he finds its communica t ive assumptions w h o l l y inadequate. The conventions cont ro l l ing the syntax o f language, and the subsequent system that the syntax is born of, are found arbitrary, inadequate for describing the shift that has occurred in J o c k ' s approach to the w o r l d around h im. 50 makes her l i fe ' s work , the "power . . . o f communicating" (192). Janet, w h o changes her name, w h o becomes Sister M o n i c a , a l lows experience to transform her: by reading M r s . Hu tch inson ' s fear for her, Janet understands that it was her " b e l i e f that had supported her. W h i l e her be l i e f turns her towards a li teral faith, Chris t iani ty , be l i e f also names, is imbued wi th , "something" else: "something G e m m y had touched o f f i n [her and L a c h l a n Beatt ie, w h o or ig ina l ly found G e m m y ] was what they were st i l l l i v i n g . . . it w o u l d end only w h e n they were ended, and maybe not even then." (197). I think the final pages o f Remembering Babylon names this "something," names it as a strategy o f "approach" (200). The name "axe" functions differently for two different people, G e m m y and Grac ie Corcoran . In both instances axe is i ta l ic ized , the i tal ics s ign i fy ing the reading o f texture. F o r G e m m y , the w o r d axe is a web o f s ignif icat ion whose latching to the sign subsequently latches to himself: "meaning cl ing[s] to the [word/sound] image in the same way that the clothes he was wear ing c lung to the man" (30). The i ta l ic ized axe br ings other words back to G e m m y , other memories, other stories. A x e is the genesis for analogical metaphor; G e m m y reads the storied potential i n the names o f objects, a storied potential ar is ing from a k n o w i n g o f h imse l f that is a turning toward the w o r l d , an inquis i t ive examinat ion o f the w o r l d as w e l l as an attempt to reconcile images f rom his past into himself. F o r Gracie , G e m m y is " le t . . . loose wi th an axe" (77), and as a result o f the hand that grasps the axe, the w o r d "assumed substance, took shape" (77). Grac ie Corco ran ' s fearful perception o f G e m m y w i t h an axe is most ly informed by her perception o f G e m m y , not o f the axe. The stories attached to the name are imposed f rom outside the name itself, not inspired by imaginat ion born o f the i ta l ic iza t ion o f the name, 51 Janet silently speaks: "let none be left i n the dark or out o f m i n d . . . as w e approach prayer. A s w e approach knowledge. A s we approach one another" (200). F o r the reader, the approach is learned through an engagement w i t h naming as a narrative strategy. Jock, E l l e n , Janet, L a c h l a n , and G e m m y avo id rendering the w o r l d w i t h a perceptual schematic that relies on constructing hierarchies to feel safe: instead, their difference engines structure their interaction by unsett l ing the sure w o r l d and their places w i t h i n it. The third story, then, i n the story o f " b " is that o f the verb to be, a metaphor o f interaction. The w a y i n w h i c h we name the w o r l d and the way in w h i c h w e a l l o w the w o r l d to name us relies on a strategy o f 52 but an imposed reading that comes from outside the be-ing, either settled or unsettled name. G e m m y can not just " chop" or "hew" w o o d , or both or/as if. in their l i teral sense: there exists the potential for h im, as other, to "chop" or "hew" or "dismember" other things. The imaginat ion, i n many cases, fuels perception: G r a d e ' s imaginat ion is solely informed by an i ta l ic ized fear: a "petr if ied" (78) fear that fossi l izes the potential stories as explanations ar is ing f rom G e m m y ' s hand o n axe. Al terna t ive ly , G e m m y is interested i n the ossif icat ion o f names, i n the wa y they are structural bone. E l l e n M c l v o r ' s d i f f icul ty i n t a lk ing about the death o f t w o o f her chi ldren occurs as a direct result o f "there [being] too much space" in a "here" that is in front o f the names etched on their gravestones, as much space "between words, even the simplest, as there was between objects" (111). "He re" is also a silence m o b i l i z e d by grief, the failure o f language, an inabi l i ty to explain the death o f one 's chi ldren. I wonder, here, h o w Jock ' s real izat ion c o m i n g f rom unnameable things applies to sadness and grief. I wonder i f metaphor is enough, whether metaphor aurally fills the space, whether metaphor is a metonymic stand-in for grief. I wonder i f the unworded g r i e f between words is the same k ind o f space that exists between objects. Jock recognizes that the experiencing o f the w o r l d exists "outside" words , is unnameable, i n m u c h the same way that Jock ' s wi fe recognizes that g r i e f is unnameable, exists "between" words . I do know, however, that those w h o w i l l a lways engage w i t h the w o r l d in a w a y that imposes space between objects, w h o avoid the process in descript ion, 1 53 w i l l w i d e n the chasm, objectify, never question the " c o m m o n " i n othering. I can imagine that the death o f one 's ch i ldren is pa lpably s imi la r to the space between w o r d s — explanations, as thrown stones, fa l l short o f the opposite side o f chasm, fa l l ing into an abyss o f nameless grief. E l l e n , although perhaps unaware o f her strategy, is negating the nameable when she renders gr ie f as chiasmic , and b y do ing so makes an assertion. The space "between" for E l l e n is not the singular name " g r i e f (not name: un-name-able); instead the space is an accumulat ion o f stories, " too" a quantity, an emot ional mass, and quali ty, the texture w i t h i n story that returns too m u c h to the storyteller: the storyteller is unable to hide behind what texture the name occludes T H E S T O R Y O F U N - S E T T L I N G S E T T L E D . " S o it is settled." "Set t led." T h e closure i m p l i e d i n a cursory reading o f the sentence is found want ing after other definit ions bubble to the surface. T h e settled synonymous w i t h " so lved" is o n l y one meaning, one vo i ce among a mul t ip l i c i ty . W h e n Jacko ' s Reach is settled, bui l t upon, populated, named as such, it is so lved, "resolve[d] conc lus ive ly , " but also "co lon ized , " " w o n for progress," occupied w i t h humans o c c u p y i n g themselves w i t h "night tennis" and "skateboard ramp[s]" and shopping, c lar i f ied o f " impur i t i e s" l i ke winos , "feral cats," "dumpers o f i l l ega l garbage.. . [and] A b o r i g i n e s " i n order that "securi ty" and "safe" become synonyms wi th "settle" (93). W h e n M a l o u f employs this w o r d laterally, w h i c h is to say a l lows mul t ip le definit ions to arise f rom its reading, he articulates a strategy o f naming that recognizes its storied potential . H e unsettles settled naming . " B l a c k s o i l Coun t ry . " Settled country. Jordan says, " w h e n w e come it was to settle" (116). T h e verb shifts from present to past tense. T h e arr ival is mediated and informed b y an imperative from the past, both as strategy o f approach and actual. Jordan M c G i v e r n is k i l l e d i n retribution: to return balance. T h e story o f the c o m i n g as w e l l as what accompanies the 54 coming—the ways i n w h i c h colonizers approach the places they colonize , the stories they attempt to impose o n the places they colonize—originate an occurrence, a death. Jordan M c G i v e r n ' s story "becomes" his father's story. A l t h o u g h o n l y ever named as P a , the father's name is the same as his son 's . Jordan M c G i v e r n names both father and son—Jordan M c G i v e r n is namer and namel ing . " M y " name is " h i s " name not i n the same w a y that "the story" is " m y story" "becomes his [story]" (128): the stories inspired b y the same name are different. T h e story o f P a ' s son's death gives shape to both P a and his son: turns P a into a "f igure" o n the landscape, a previous "subservien[ce]" transformed into power b y a name: " a name to w h i p up fear and jus t i f ied rage and the unbr id led savagery o f slaughter" (130). T h e "becoming" is also ambiguous: the ghost s t i l l tells Pa ' s story, the narrator does not change. D u r i n g the cu l l i ng , Jordan M c G i v e r n lies "quiet i n the heart o f the country," his " s i n k i n g in to" it "gra in b y g ra in" a "b l end ing" (130). The story o f Jordan blends w i t h the story o f Pa—Jordan ' s name names his grief, sanctions it, w h i c h blends w i t h the story o f h is mother ' s w h i c h becomes the story o f Jordan 's bone b lend ing w i t h the sand. Jordan's mother, w h o , before Jordan's death "[n]ever raised her eyes to the country . . . just acted as i f it wasn ' t there" (121), n o w "gazes into the " b r i m m i n g heart o f i t " (130), searching, perhaps, for her son's name on and i n it. T h e unsett l ing o f names, o f the words that mediate predictable and safe percept ion and interaction. A n unnamed member o f the communi ty to w h i c h Jock M c l v o r , and G e m m y , belong, protests G e m m y ' s otherness b y w r i t i n g a w o r d i n their o w n shit on a shed that G e m m y is bu i l d ing . Jock names the act o f hand l ing defecation an "abomina t ion" (115). That the shit forms a " w o r d " moves h i m towards "madness": " W h a t word? H e shook his head w i l d l y to prevent it forming, to prevent the poss ib i l i ty o f it getting i n there, o f h i m s e l f g i v i n g it f o r m " (116). I have a lways wanted to k n o w the word , to fill, to fu l f i l l the si lence 55 enacted b y the page, the strategy, and m y o w n desire. T h e unsett l ing o f guaranteed mean ing here enacts a moment o f self-ref lexivi ty: w h y do I need to k n o w ? what space w i l l k n o w i n g fu l l - f i l l ? w h y is k n o w i n g that J o c k ' s reaction is i n part a product o f what he sees as a regression into a "darkness" that communi ty and c iv i l i z a t i on , for w h i c h wri t ten language is a bulwark , "eradicated" (116), not enough? inadequate? incomplete somehow? What is that nameless word? W h a t insatiable desire has the unnamed w o r d mob i l i zed? rru 56 D e f i n i t i o n 3 nameless [see NAME sb and -LESS.] l b . N o t mentioned b y name; left i n obscurity. 5b. H a v i n g no name; unnamed. 8. That one shrinks f rom naming C h a p t e r 3 Negation, Hyphenation, Identity: Naming's Morphemes B o t h ontologies and goodness have oss i fy ing effects. On to logy points y o u toward in te l l ig ib i l i t ies , "presences," your imaginat ion places i n the w o r l d : the practice this generates is that o f the se l f addressing one o f the m a n y hand puppets the imaginat ion wears. Goodness tips naturally into rectitude, its mora l narc iss ism; perhaps a l l a long it was s i m p l y rectitude's finest name. So both systematizing pursuits—the one reaching for an understanding o f essence, the other for an ethics—produce sol ipsis t ic practices, ways o f standing apart from the w o r l d . from Tim Lilburn's Going Home, 181-2. THE STORY OF HOKUSAI AND HIS MANY NAMES. I must beg in this chapter w i t h a story, the story o f h o w certain names named an admixture that lead m e causal ly to naming and negation and hyphenation—the story o f the names A n n e Car son and H o k u s a i . A n n e Carson writes a poem cal led " H o k u s a i " i n her co l lec t ion Men in the Off Hours. W h o l e fragments f rom it go l i k e this: [•••] H o k u s a i aged 83 said, T i m e to do m y l ions . E v e r y m o r n i n g unt i l he d ied 57 219 days later he made a l i on . [•••] L i o n s swayed and leapt from the crests o f the pine trees onto the snowy road or crashed together over his hut, their white paws mau l ing stars on the w a y d o w n I continue to draw hoping for a peaceful day, jn,!,-; ,%#V̂ INS NISSHIN-JOMA: Daily Charm against Evil 31 said Hokusa i as they thudded past. (14-15) The poem's parallax: Hokusa i hopes for a peaceful (/ quiet) day w h i l e the l ions o f his o w n m a k i n g c lamor a symphony—"thud , " "crash," " m a u l " (although one must imagine the sound o f maul ing)—outs ide . I introduce the poem here to tell the story o f where it l ed me, unintent ional ly, laterally, when I wasn ' t l ook ing , to naming (and negation). H o k u s a i (1760-1849) was a painter. H e is k n o w n to have had, and then shed ( l ike p l u m blossoms at the onset o f winter) many names. B o r n Tetsuzo, his next name was a gift, g iven to h i m b y his namesake first teacher, K a t s u k a w a Shunro. H e moved through his other names, acquir ing, invent ing, gif t ing, but a lways leav ing behind, that is, unt i l his death: 3 1 From http://www.book-navi.com/hokusai/art/jomal-e.html. 58 Gunmatei , M a g u r a Shunro, H i s h i k a w a Sor i (and combinat ions thereof), H o k u s a i So r i , Hokusa i (after gif t ing S o r i to one o f his o w n pupi ls) , G a k y o j i n H o k u s a i ( l i teral ly meaning Hokusai mad about drawing), H o k u s a i T o k i m a s a , Toki ta ro K a k o , Tai to , Iitsu (after gif t ing Taito to his p u p i l Hokusen) , and M a n j i , w h i c h is not to ment ion his w o o d b l o c k seals, o f M o u n t F u j i , and the name/character M o m o (Hokusai 370-371). A man w h o has no permanent identi ty rooted i n one name, and w h o g i f t s 3 2 his o w n name twice , might have a hard t ime impos ing meaning o n what surrounds h i m , a hard t ime prac t ic ing the ontology o f naming, or subscr ib ing to tautologies. Hokusa i ' s many names informed his l i fe and craft. H o k u s a i was also an impressionist painter: the real fai led h i m : impress ionism, paint ing-craft ing stories, d i d not. Death, naming , and A n n e Car son herse l f led me to Carson ' s theoretical text Economy of the Unlost, a text where in she talks about the ancient Greek poet S imonides (556-467 B . C . ) and his craft, his abi l i ty to wri te eulogies i n the form o f epitaphs on gravestones, epitaphs that 3 2 Kevin McNeilly asks whether "gives" or "bestows" is better here. I am thinking that "gift" here is a verb that belongs to a specific strategy of approach and is aligned with Don McKay's "Homage" when he writes that "we can perform artistic acts [including the naming of things] in such a way that, in 'giving things a face' the emphasis falls on the gift, the way, for example, a linguistic community might honour a stranger by conferring upon her a name in their language... homage is, perhaps, simply appropriation with the current reversed" (Vis 99). • 1779: Shunro • 1781-1782: Zewaisai • 1785-1794: Gumbatei • 1795-1798: Sori • 1797-1798: Hokusai Sori • 1798-1819: Hokusai . 1798-1811:Kako • 1799: Fasenkyo Hokusai • 1799: Tatsumasa Shinsei • 1803: Senkozan • 1805-1809: Kintaisha • 1800-1808: Gakyoj in • 1805: Kyukyush in • 1805-1806 and 1834-1849: Gakyo-ro j in • 1807-1824: Katsushika • 1811-1820: Taito • 1812: Kyor i an B ainen • 1812-1815: Raishin • 1814: Tengudo Nettetsu • 1820-1834: Iitsu • 1821-1833: Zen saki no Hokusai Iitsu • 1822: Fesenkyo Iitsu . 1831-1849: Man j i • 1834: Tsuchimochi Nisaburo • 1834-1846: Hyakusho Hachemon . 1847-1849: Fujiwara Iitsu - from http://www.artelino.com/articles/hokusai.asp 59 required an economy o f inscr ipt ional form as a result o f the geography o f stone: " o n l y an inscr ipt ional poet has to measure his inspirat ion against the size o f his w r i t i n g surface. . . out o f this material face. . . evo lved an aesthetic o f exactitude and verbal e conomy" (78): epitaphs on stone require the naming o f person that expands past the boundary o f stone i n the same w a y that names embed stories, a breaking o f the boundaries o f form. Car son ' s d iscuss ion is not l imi ted to S imonides : Ce lan , monetary systems and value and gif t ing, memory , w r i t i n g the dead ("the responsibi l i ty o f the l i v i n g to the dead is not s imple . It is w e w h o let them go, for we do not accompany them. It is w e who h o l d them here—deny them their nothingness—by naming their names" [84-85]), t ime, and mul t ip le readings o f economy weave together to tease and tangle an exit strategy that attends to h o w l inguis t ic negation (not, no, un-) is a strategy o f assertion. T H E S T O R Y O F N E G A T I O N . Nega t ion is assertion. A tough nut to crack. A n n e Carson writes that "the negative is a pecu l ia r ly l inguis t ic resource whose power resides w i t h the user o f w o r d s " (102). T h e negative, then, tells as m u c h about l inguis t ic acts as the person who uses the negative. "Nega t ion , " she continues, "depends upon an act o f the imag in ing m i n d " (102). W h e n I say, as I have been saying, that a name is nor just a referent, I "b r ing together i n m y m i n d t w o pieces o f data, one o f w h i c h is present and actual [the name itself, the s ign] , the other o f w h i c h is absent and fict i t ious [the other possibi l i t ies for what a name is, does, h o w it functions, as s tory] ." Nega t ion , then, "requires the co l lus ion o f the present and the absent o n the screen o f the imag ina t ion" (102). T h e differential diagnosis enacted b y negation, and the imaginat ion it requires, leads Carson to an observation: " a negat ive. . . posits a fuller picture o f reali ty than does a posi t ive statement" (102). I am part icular ly fond o f the statement "I don ' t disagree," w h i c h is to say, " I agree," and more. T h e more here gestures toward 60 context, propriety, incomplete analysis, ambigui ty , naming w i t h story. The more is also an inheritance for the speaker as reader, an inheritance o f the abi l i ty to notice strategy, and to name it as such. Ca r son is fond o f S imonides , i n part, because he was fond o f the double negative: " w i t h cheeks not unwet b y tears" (101). The economy o f stone forced h i m into a strategy that carved as m u c h content into the etchings to fill out, to make story of, the epitaph's naming . T H E S T O R Y O F H Y P H E N S O N G R A V E S T O N E S Gravestones, and epitaphs as a k i n d o f naming , lead m e to Jack Hodg ins and Innocent Cities and L o g a n Sumner and his gravestone and the failure o f naming . Sumner ' s gravestone reaches out beyond the boundaries o f one gravestone: "the c o l u m n o f in te r locking granite had grown so ta l l that it n o w seemed to have thrust up out o f h is s t i l l -empty grave l i k e some sort o f monstrous fungus, w i t h the apparent intent ion o f eventually punctur ing the dark, overcast s k y " (291). T h e inab i l i ty o f the gravestone to contain "his entire story" (291) is a failure o f form, i n part, as w e l l as a failure for Sumner to be comfortable w i t h the stories that w i l l always exist i n his name without needing to chise l them into stone; Sumner ' s gravestone is a failure to name n a m i n g . 3 3 A n d the failure to name, and Jack Hodg ins , leads m e to "Separat ing" and "Sp i t De l aney ' s Is land" and A lbe r t De laney ' s mul t ip le negations that name both h i m s e l f (many t imes wi thout knowing) and the w o r l d around h i m . H o d g i n s ' two stories, and an attention the repeated textual strategy o f naming w i t h hyphen, leads me, b y w a y o f ending m y story and this journey o f d i scovery to F red W a h ' s hyphen, a hyphen that i s implicated i n naming. W a h negates the hyphen ' s prescript ive and cont ro l l ing rubric; instead, through metaphorical attention, the hyphen becomes an assertion o f his o w n identity, a wri ter 's identi ty, a c r i t i c ' s identity. I w i l l beg in w i t h W a h ' s hyphen, its affinity w i t h and his 3 3 Laura Moss points out that the gravestone is also a failure to make a name static or to stop story from progressing. Sumner doesn't change the names, he adds qualifiers to them. 61 response to imposed identi ty i n the Chinese-Canadian that names h i m . W a h ' s hyphen mobi l izes an examinat ion o f the hyphen i n "Separat ing." THE STORY OF WAH'S POETICS I think that the w a y F red W a h talks about, envis ions language, and poetics is a l igned w i t h naming as a strategy o f approach. Faking It: Poetics & Hybridity is part o f " T h e W r i t e r as C r i t i c " series o f texts. I am enamored w i t h the w a y that W a h envis ions text as a lways already theoretical, h o w he places emphasis on strategy first, o n h o w a poetics manifests as a result o f the pr inted w o r d first, not context. G e o f f W a r d is a l ign ing h i m s e l f w i t h W a h (whether he k n o w s it or not): W a r d writes i n his essay on/cal led "Poe t ics" that h is "essay is not a rebuttal o f theory but rather a reminder that the practice o f w r i t i n g poems does i t se l f and o f necessity s ignal a theoretical d imens ion" (Glossalia: An Alphabet of Critical Keywords 227). W a h ' s theoretical wr i t i ng is saturated w i t h other people ' s text, their poetry, their theorizing. W a h places large fragments o f text amongst his o w n cr i t ical prose that is , at t imes, i n i t se l f poetry. Deconstruct ion for W a h takes the form o f r i f f ing , entertaining the possibi l i t ies i n smal l bits o f what he quotes, and setting his analysis alongside the t h ink ing o f others i n order that the reader initiate a differential diagnosis. W a h thinks that poetics is connected to l inquis t ic attention i n m u c h the same w a y that I think naming is : poetics is a " w a y to be i n language. . . the mouth o f the w o r d w i t h i n the w o r d . . . r ight there at the tips o f our fingers, i n the ' s n i f f o f the pen as it hunts the page" (Faking It 16). M y pen sniffs the naming i n the text i n the funct ioning cogni t ive m o d e l . W a h believes that "to wri te i n poetry is to m o v e past the comfort o f a ru led discourse; i n order, to m o v e on, beyond order, the complete thought spi l ls over to an excess and residue o f language" (20). E n g a g i n g w i t h naming as a narrative strategy requires the i so la t ion o f said strategy f rom other strategies, w h i c h requires both recogni t ion that alternative strategies exist 62 and the need for a micron-oscope: attending to the cel lu lar i n language, the hyphen for example. Engag ing w i t h the fact that language, the words o n the page, is a lways already a k i n d o f theory, W a h foregrounds strategy b y w r i t i n g that the Greek ' " K R I N O , to p i c k out for oneself, to choose ' has been a useful n a m i n g " (21). Wri te r s choose naming to get in/at something: the choice and the text both function, the choice and the text have ut i l i ty . A n d f inal ly, W a h " use[s] the term 'poe t i c s ' . . . not i n the theoretical sense o f the study o f or theory about literature, but i n its pract ical and appl ied sense, as the tools designed or located b y writers and artists to initiate movement and change. That is , 'poetics as a sort o f applied poetic, i n the sense that engineering is a fo rm o f appl ied mathematics ' (Bernstein, " O p t i m i s m " 151)" (qtd. i n Faking It5\). W a h focuses o n the strategies that arise f rom the use o f particular language over others, focuses on what is enacted by particular forms o f l inguist ic attending. W a h latches textual strategy to th ink ing , to re-cogni t ive moments, "when th ink ing manoeuvres the ho r i zon b y fragment rather than whole , b y difference rather than b y synthesis, we escape the pr i son o f intention and denouement, o f the assumed safety o f settlement" (185). Here I hear an echo o f M a l o u f s unsett l ing. T o take the r i ch so i l left b y the compost o f W a h ' s strategy o f approach, naming as narrative strategy implicates a poetics, an unsettl ing o f settlement enacted b y p l ay ing w i t h language. Hyphens p lay w i t h language. T h e y latch things together to make new th ings—or the descriptions thereof—while l eav ing the latch v i s ib le . I think one w a y o f accessing the strategy i n the hyphen is b y compar ing it to the compound noun. "[B]ut tercup" (Spit 9) and "sweet-pea" (11) function differently. Buttercup does not flash its naming; the compound ing is textual ly inv i s ib le : no space, no diacr i t ic , no h iccup for the eyes scanning the word . T h e hyphen is v is ib le , a punctuat ion that enacts touching w i t h the m i n d ' s eye, a B r a i l l e moment , 63 three d imensional space: a punctum that requires focus—a moment o f puncture, language that cannot el ide i t se l f as language, occlude its construct ion—a pundit for text 's texturality, for a strategy o f naming that makes strategies o f naming v i s i b l e . 3 4 Language needs the hyphen: the "don ' t -give-a-damn-what-you-think l o o k " becomes mashed potatoes wi thout it: the "don ' tg iveadamnwhatyouthink l o o k " or the "pausedinthemiddleofachew s m i l e " (216). Is it paused i n or pause d in ; who is leo, and w h y isn ' t his name capital ized?; d id somebody A c h e w ! ? Bless you . W h i l e a lack o f separation alienates i n the confusion o f form, the hyphen functions as invi ta t ion into the act o f naming, into the crafting o f names, into language as a system o f naming . A s k questions, hyphen asks. Entertain mul t ip le answers, answers as poss ib i l i t ies . Quest ion: what about parataxis or serration? Parataxis means l inkage; serration impl i e s raw edges. Nei ther , l i ke the hyphen, make what is in the point o f cohesion v is ib le . One o f W a h ' s responses to the hyphen is parataxis, long strings o f clauses without the conjunct ion 's connective tissue. F o r example, " . . .rope, a little oriented anchor mediat ion, a taken token, yak-yak d i n o f the Hermes draught caught from across the room, rat t l ing o f the mant ic dice , the padded paws o f adverbs, punctum o f metaphor camouflaged into the leaves o f the page . . . " (Diamond 121). E a c h successive clause is both modi f ica t ion and addi t ion, gesture and retraction, meaning that hesitates towards closer meaning, naming and story. Parataxis has no beg inn ing and no end; it marks a midd le space, process. Render ing this strategy as serration, renaming it, initiates rhythm: dip o f phrase to point o f c o m m a or pause into d ip o f phrase to point o f c o m m a and pause, as i f rhythm is a synonym for story, as i f story is diffusing out o f the membrane o f the words for things, as i f the momen tum and movement counteracts the stasis o f names. M o r e questions: what synapse is the hyphen per forming, i n 3 4 Punctum, Puncture, and Pundit follow Punctuation in Concise's Oxford Dictionary, 10 t h edition. There is no so what with this footnote; it is purely factual. 64 W a h , in Spit , i n L o g a n , i n Ka te , i n Zachary Jack, i n reader? It looks taught, but h o w is it connected, h o w w o u l d we envis ion its edges? Serrated, raw, tentatively clotted? W h i c h side are we to choose to bel ieve, more? H o w is the act o f separation (not) more precise? Jack H o d g i n s ' "Separa t ing" contains mul t ip le hyphenations. A n inexhaust ive list: "side-tilted l o o k " (9), "paint-peeled s ign" (10), " throat-phlegm" (11), "sweet-pea" (11), "wind-cr ipp led spruce" (15), " S e a - W o l f monster" (15), "carved-out . . . p i l ed -up . . . p imp le - faced" (22), "red-faced. . . store-front... whis t l e -cord" (23), "once- in-a- l i fe t ime. . . saved-up over- t ime. . . one-sided" (25), "home-safe" (28), "god-damned" (33), and " l i k e that what-was- it right back there at the beginning o f things" (27). T h e fact that nouns as names need compounding denotes the failure o f naming , the failure o f signs to describe. In the last example, the hyphen is modula ted b y the pronouncement o f the vaguest noun o n the planet: thing. The hyper-precis ion enacted b y naming w i t h hyphen is blurred b y the retraction o f a pronouncement o f descr ibabi l i ty , an assertion o f u n k n o w i n g , o f un-contracted subject-object separation, o f the indescribable "madness" (Innocent 81) o f " th ing . " N a m i n g w i t h hyphen destabilizes the prec is ion that naming tends to both desire and occlude. Spi t Delaney, as the title impl ies , is separated f rom those things that act as ident i fy ing referents, referents that w h e n placed i n opposi t ion to h i m s e l f define his identity. H i s wi fe leaves h i m ; his j o b o f tak ing care o f an antique train, " O l d N u m b e r O n e , " i s taken away when the train is put to pasture; his comfortable w o r l d o f answers crumbles w h e n "the stupidest god-damned question he ever heard just popped into his head" (14), a question that makes h i m unsure o f the guaranteed meaning that keeps h i m settled. " Where is the dividing line?" the question asks. "Be tween what and wha t?" he replies. "Between what is and what isn't" (14). Spi t curses. T h e curse is a recogni t ion o f an unsett l ing o f a requirement o f the w o r l d , the requirement for bounded things, guaranteed meaning (however constructed); the 65 fact that things are arbitrari ly bounded, arbitrari ly named, that the boundaries are constructed, remain a necessary ignorance. L o g a n Sumner is m u c h l i ke Spit , albeit a l i t t le more c i v i l i z e d . Responding to the fact that M r . Horncast le has two wives , Sumner does not curse, he apologizes, " I ' m sorry, but i t ' s a l l too confusing for me. I ' m not accustomed to such a blurr ing o f th ings" (166). Laur i e R i c o u writes that Innocent Cities is "most se l f -consciously concerned w i t h the phys i ca l nature o f language itself, w i t h h o w meaning is p roduced" (93), both ind iv idua l and based on consensus (widening out f rom the ' communive r sa l , ' to the ' regioniversa l , ' ' countr iversa l , ' and un ive r sa l ) . 3 5 A corol lary question is asked b y Spit : " A n d what does it take to see i t ? " (Separating 17), what does it take to see the b lur r ing . T h e shedding, the " u n c o u p l i n g " (17) o f a s ign 's guaranteed meaning mob i l i ze s the beg inn ing o f a change i n Spit , albeit one that doesn' t reach the conc lus ion (o f sorts) unt i l the r i g i d l ine between the stories "Separat ing" and "Sp i t De laney ' s Is land" is blurred, a shift i n Sp i t ' s perceptual schematic that carries an accompanying textual strategy. T h e hyphens s l o w l y disappear f rom the first story to the next, as i f they become inadequate i n textural ly descr ib ing Sp i t ' s transformation. Rather than outward cod i f ica t ion bel ied by the act o f hyphenat ion that performs an explanation o f "sure" naming , "Sp i t De laney ' s Is land" directs Sp i t ' s attention inwards to a naming o f se l f where hyphenat ion fails, falls short, i n the same w a y that Chinese-Canadian is inadequate for W a h . T h e intermediate space between De laney ' s acts o f separating, o f the hyphenated nouns that function as descriptors that place, that order, is f i l l ed w i t h descriptions that m u d d y the precise separation: for example , "row[s] o f y e l l o w i s h seaweed" is " tangled" wi th other matter, the "cont inuous" is mediated b y "uneven l ines" (25) created b y the tide. Spi t ' s need to quantify qual i ty is replaced w i t h uncertainty. Respond ing to his w i fe ' s question, "do y o u think y o u These words are my coinage. 66 can learn to cook ," Spit responds w i t h hesitating negatives, "don ' t , " "don ' t , " "can ' t " (30). The negatives contain a cogni t ive moment; the negation begins to m o b i l i z e an assertion that recognizes the failure o f naming: "there wasn't a th ing he cou ld reach out and touch and be sure o f (30). T h e cogni t ive moment is incomplete , m o d a l l y unpotentiated—"Spit cannot bear to think where [the Island tourist-hikers] are going , where their rides will take them. . . . H e could f o l l o w them, i n his m i n d , he could go the who le distance w i t h them, but he refuses, slides back f rom it, holds onto the things that are happening here and n o w " (31 m y emphases). Spi t wi thdraws from the creative moment , f rom s torying their journeys. H i s need for the immedia te material i ty and fact ici ty of, as w e l l as unmediated contact w i t h , things persists. Th ings again. Sp i t ' s n a m i n g — n a m i n g that locks identi ty—tends towards turning objects into things. Things are not things as a result o f a recogni t ion that naming is inadequate to the stories l eak ing out o f their forms, things are things because Spi t doesn' t k n o w h o w to engage w i t h them, doesn't understand them. F r o m the opening pages o f "Separat ing," the abi l i ty to name accurately, to not avo id the storying o f names, is connected to an B e r t : A r e there any cookies i n the cook ie jar? E r n i e : Y e s there are buddy Bert . I put a number o f them i n there a w h i l e ago. Y o u can have them i f y o u give me your teddy. B e r t : [After giving Ernie his teddy.] H e y ! There aren't any cookies i n here. Y o u said y o u put a number o f them i n here. E r n i e : Y e a h , so, zero is a number. - A scene paraphrased from Hossein Arsham's website. abi l i ty to "not ice": "people d r iv ing b y don ' t not ice Spi t De laney" w h i l e "Hi tch -h ike r s do not ice" (9). T h e no t i c ing is also connected to p r o x i m i t y and l is tening; loca t ing onesel f closer to Spit requires that y o u notice h i m as a result o f his "mut ter ing" (9). T h e hi tchhikers hear and see Spi t ' s idiosyncrasies , the stories i n his name, name the things that make h i m unique, 67 that upwel l as story. "That was one more th ing" (13), Spit thinks, l i teral ly referring to Ste l la his soon to be ex-wife , an unavoidable severing w i t h hyphen, a severing that forces a transformation i n h i m . A t the moment o f utterance, thing avoids the story he is about to be immersed i n , the story o f separating. W h e n they take his be loved train away f rom h i m (the they an indeterminate p ronoun referring to communi ty and the takers-away and "the w o r l d out to cheat h i m wherever he turned" [25]), they tel l h i m " y o u can't expect things to last for ever" (17). T h e i t a l i c i zed object both names his obsession as a thing, deva lu ing it, negat ing the stories that la tch to his being, that referent h i m s e l f and force h i m into the task o f repopulat ing the deva lu ing b y hanging onto the m e m o r y o f O l d N u m b e r One : he commiss ions a four-foot o i l o f the train, hangs the number 1 o f f his door l i k e a ta l isman, and " immortal ize[s] on tape" the sounds o f the train (17), the sounds o f the whis t le not named sole ly as such, the sound also an opiate that "cut[s] right through to his core" (23), and a crutch. Spit , albeit unaware, holds onto the objects that inspire the stories born o f h is h is tory w i t h his train, rather than the O l d N o . 1 so named. W h i l e the named object is taken away, the texture is not. Th ings m o v e natural ly into no-thing-s. T h i n g equals negation, disinterest, turning away. W h a t is a thing? N o t h i n g unt i l named. W h a t is the hyphen? N o t h i n g . It just is . Grammat i ca l rules require it. Its funct ional i ty is s ingular ly defined. T h e po l i t i ca l def in i t ion o f negation is an easy def in i t ion o f negation, one that requires that its def in i t ion remain static. T h e double negative casts negative negation into doubt. A youth that Spi t meets "denie[s] noth ing" (26), a naked youth, "as i f when h e ' d stripped o f f his clothes h e ' d also stripped o f f whatever it was that w o u l d make his face different f rom a thousand others" (26). B e i n g stripped bare, stripped o f the clothes that w o u l d name h i m , set h i m apart, identify h i m (name [trans, v.] 2. identify b y name), a l lows the double negative. I f one denies nothing, one asserts 68 everything, enacts poss ib i l i ty , enacts the breaking o f form, a l lows agency to choose w h i c h side o f the hyphenated identity to cultivate one 's o w n form f rom. O r , as W a h writes, "the hyphen a lways seems to demand negotiat ion" (Diamond 137). Chinese-Canad ian for W a h is a negation that inspires assertion. C a l l and response. Response negotiat ing ca l l . C a l l recognating response. Th ings w i t h transparent meanings become nothing, ignorable, referents that do not need mediat ion. K n o w what that thing is , name it, th ing it. F o r example, convent ional usage o f the hyphen requires f o l l o w i n g the f o l l o w i n g imperatives: 2. U s e hyphens w i t h fractions used as adjectives; 5. U s e hyphens w i t h prefixes before proper nouns; 9. U s e hyphens to prevent a w o r d be ing mistaken for an ent i rely different w o r d ; 11. Hyphens are sometimes necessary to prevent a m b i g u i t y . 3 6 But conventions and laws contain ambigui ty . A n attempt to provide the imperat ive that dictates interaction leads to an imperat ive that contains the w o r d ambigui ty . L a w s funct ion to dissolve ambigui ty , as does naming. A m b i g u i t y named results i n more ambigui ty . I f a hyphen is necessary to prevent ambigui ty , and the hyphen is used to more accurately name, the tendency towards accuracy betrays the mathematical inab i l i ty for compound nouns to ever accurately name: " c o r d " is incomple te— "whis t l e -cord" ("Separat ing" 23) is more precise—train-whis t le-cord w o u l d be even more precise, and so on. Language ' s ab i l i ty to describe is l im i t ed : h a l f the distance to accuracy leads to h a l v i n g the distance i n perpetuity. 3 6 From The Canadian Writer's Handbook, 4th Edition, 2005, pp. 302-303. 3 7 I am reminded of Jan Zwicky's thinking that "a proof in geometry is a gesture that allows other to see what we have seen... like a metaphor, it is a rhetorical strategy" (Wisdom and Metaphor 44), as is writing drawing attention to naming as a narrative strategy. She supplies one of James Robert Brown's Theorems on the opposing page, Yi+ [A + V»+ ... = I. Using hyphens as a strategy locates the reader in the fact that naming with hyphens implies the infinite perpetuation of hyphens (as the ellipses in Brown's proof imply) as they are required for a solution of wholeness (or the whole number that the 1 on the right hand side of the equals sign denotes). 69 C a n prec is ion ever be named? C a n naming ' s inherent ambigui ty ever be named? C a n what ambigui ty impl ies ever be named? In Innocent Cities, ambigu i ty forces its w a y into Ka te M c C o n n e l l ' s attending to the wor ld . She tells L o g a n Sumner her story about Aus t r a l i a resonating her, unsett l ing her. It is wor th quot ing i n fu l l : B y the t ime I left L i l i a n ' s [Australian] plantat ion I real ized that something dis turbing had happened to me since I had first arrived on that continent. Y o u must understand, M r . Sumner, that when I left m y ch i ldhood home i n Eng land I left beh ind a comfortable w o r l d o f things, o f real places and real trees and birds and bui ld ings . Bu t now I saw that I had exchanged it for a w o r l d made up o f nothing but beautiful words?* T h e love ly , l o v e l y sounds o f the place had deceived me. W h e n w e ' d first arr ived on that continent I was charmed, I T Q fe l l i n love w i t h the strangeness and beauty o f their words , but i n return they pushed and jos t led me aside i n their greedy rush to germinate, it seemed to me, to sprout and burgeon and mul t ip ly , and throw out feelers and send up shoots. T h e y intended to c rowd me ou t ! 4 0 D o y o u think this is a k i n d o f madness? L i s ten! It is the fault o f that o l d lunatic A d a m who started it a l l , I think, and a l l his lunatic offspring males who became explorers and geographers and dict ionary-makers - a l l o f them want ing, I ' m sure o f it, to na i l everyth ing d o w n into some sort o f r i g i d identi ty i n order to perpetrate some awful f ic t ion upon us. That w h o l e ancient w o r n - d o w n flattened-out continent w i shed to strangle the breath out o f m e w i t h the arms o f its endless forest o f namesl (81-82) The stories behind the names, and that K a t e w o u l d be required to learn them and a l l their potential ly uncomfortable impl ica t ions , are what constrict the breath out o f her. K a t e refuses to embrace the challenge, to animate her agency as a listener to stories instead o f a sieve for things, passing names through their precisely defined and smal l frames. A l t h o u g h K a t e recognizes that she is a product o f " lunat ic A d a m [ ' s ] " system, she is unable to extricate 3 8 Economy requires pasting words to things. We rarely have time to entertain the stories in everything around us. That words attach to things, that things are not described by the words that attach to them is a cognitive moment for Kate. Kate engages with language's arbitrarily, language's strategy of codifying in order to "comfort," to silence ambiguity. 3 5 Re-turn. Turn again. Turn anew. The tension between these two moments is analogous to the hyphen's tension attempting to cohere two nouns into the same space. Two nouns occupying the same space creates a moment of parallax—the law of bounded space fractures. 4 0 Egocentric structures of control, of definition, are replaced with an attention to the strategies in the structure itself. 70 herself f rom its cont ro l l ing influences. K a t e s t i l l requires that naming ' s strategies be invis ib le . A n d Hodg ins requires that the reader be aware o f the strategies that w e require to remain inv i s ib le . F red W a h has made a career out o f m a k i n g what the hyphen occludes, v i s ib l e , o f taking the seemingly innocuous bi t o f punctuation and rendering its strategies, o f m a k i n g its silences, noisy, o f l i v i n g i n its forest o f names. I have been th ink ing past (or before) W a h ' s wr i t ing enacting a po l i t i cs o f resistance, attaining a "po l i t i ca l w r i t i n g stance" (38) w h e n he aligns h i m s e l f w i t h other race writers. Fred W a h clays language; punctuation becomes punctum. W a h names the hyphen, the sign expanding to contain many metaphorical moments i n m u c h the same w a y that the s ign o f a name expands outward to contain m a n y stories. T H E S T O R Y O F W A H ' S H Y P H E N T h e hyphen performs a certain k i n d o f naming . T h e h y b r i d identi ty that the hyphen creates—not o n l y the identi ty o f people l ike i n Chinese-Canadian , but the identi ty o f objects l i ke i n "dog-eared" ("Spi t" 202)—is both identity fo rming and performance: each can be imposed or desired. B o t h t imes, the performance is a strategy. T h e hybr id , the compound noun, and the hyphen impl ica ted i n both construct interaction. T h e hyphen articulates difference and "the business o f separation" (207). W a h reads the hyphen i n his o w n rac ia l ized identity; he responds to the identity that the name constructs for h i m b y teasing out the metaphor h id ing i n the punctuation, by s torying the hyphen. F red W a h names the hyphen as punctum rather than punctuation, as moment for cr i t ical reflection on the w a y that language performs. T h e f o l l o w i n g s tory—"The Story o f W a h ' s H y p h e n " — i s o n the outside o f F red W a h ' s experience about be ing Chinese-Canadian (I am not), but turns ins ide out the strategy that W a h employs to make the story w i t h i n the hyphen v i s ib le . T h e story is meant to 71 be spoken out loud , to be performed i n order to make the punctuat ion that it talks about sonic, not silent. —> T h e hyphen. Chinese-Canadian . That seemingly innocuous piece o f semiot ic punctuation. Fred W a h is angry w i t h it. H e w o u l d l ike to c rumple up the paper it sits o n into a ba l l . H e w o u l d l i k e to remove its noose from his neck. H e w o u l d l i ke to blunt its two sharp points. F red W a h is angry w i t h the hyphen. Fred W a h is inspi red b y the hyphen. T h e hyphen is his muse. W a h ' s hyphen does not "freeze" h i m as it does his " D u t c h hyphen Canad ian" (Faking It 92) colleague A r i t h a van Herk . Instead, I think, the hyphen ' s many ambiguit ies and tensions are formative for W a h , formative for both his Chinese-Canadian identi ty and wri ter identity. W a h ' s text coalesces into the metaphor that is l eak ing out o f the hyphen. T h e hyphen, for W a h , inspires metaphor. Metaphor sits l i k e a hyphen between W a h and his wri ter ident i ty . 4 1 This textual and sonic Names and n a m i n g . . . indicate the camouflage possibi l i t ies o f the name (both v i s ib l e and inv i s ib le , performance-textualization both dash and cipher) . inspired by the f o l l o w i n g question: - from Fred Wah's Faking It, "Half-Bred Poetics" 79. h o w does W a h ' s compl ica t ion o f the ' hyphen ' affect our readerly apprehension o f W a h ' s o w n writ ten iden t i t y? 4 2 I propose that W a h is more compl i c i t w i t h than control led b y the hyphen i n Diamond Grill. T h e hyphen is v i sua l w h e n wri t ten: Chinese-Canadian . W h e n spoken, the hyphen is a space, a slight pause, an easi ly forgotten si lence: Chinese Canadian . T h e silence is different w i t h Chinese /Canadian . T h e slash is sonic - it is punctuat ion that is more l i k e l y to be spoken: for example, Diamond Grill's Swif t Current is described as a "farmer [slash] 4 1 Naming practices unexplored camouflage how we attend to the world; Wah and I want to wave the flag in naming's camouflage. 4 2 The question was initially asked by Dr. Glenn Deer in his graduate seminar on Asian-Canadian and Asian- American texts. 72 w o r k i n g class t o w n " (94). F red W a h is important ly N O T Chinese S L A S H Canadian . T h e slash separates, seems to offer choice: either/or it says, choose it says. T h e hyphen ' s subtleties, ambiguit ies , and el isions is subsumed b y its innocent ly smooth scansion, when the reading eyes m o v e from left to right across it, over it, through it, wi thout the typographical obstacle that a slash or even a v i rgule might provide . The act o f naming w i t h a hyphen can dissolve both the hyphen as component o f naming strategy and what is i m p l i e d b y a hyphenated name or identity. T h e hyphen is silence. The hyphen is a door: Chinese [picture of door] Canadian . A younger F r e d W a h opens the cafe, alone. H e writes o f the silence i n the cafe: "open up w i t h a good swift toe to the w o o d e n slab that swings between the Occident and Orient to break the hush o f the w h o l e cafe before first l ight the r o l l i n g gait w i t h w h i c h I r ide this silence that is a hyphen and the hyphen is the door" (16). Here he gestures towards two doors - the one into the cafe, and the one that separates the ki tchen f rom the eatery, one that swings both inwards and outwards. T h e hyphen, as W a h has writ ten it, sits between silence and door. S i lence i s . . . hyphen . . . is door. Or , perhaps, silence-door. Si lence is m o b i l i z i n g cri t ique. T h e hyphen is m o b i l i z i n g text. The door is m o b i l i z i n g metaphor. The m o b i l i t y i n these three instances is ambiguous, incomplete , condi t ional , but wonderfu l ly so. F red W a h is more Chinese than Canad ian [Chinese > Canadian] i n a restaurant cal led D i a m o n d G r i l l . F red W a h is Canad ian when he is p i cked for the C a n a d i a n - A n g l o team i n the school yard because he doesn't l ook Chinese . T h e restaurant itself, one that serves mos t ly Canad ian fare (whatever that m a y be), is Chinese-Canadian . W a h finds the hyphen 's " ' inbe tweeness ' . . . p rovoca t ive" (Faking It 103). T h e mobi l i t y , the freedom, i n the hyphen for W a h , I think, is the engagement w i t h it that turns into metaphor i n his o w n wr i t ing . T h i s engagement is inspired both b y the hyphen ' s imp l i c i t el isions, its silence, it N O T speaking, and b y it be ing a 73 door that swings both ways , a portal for the wri ter i n W a h . W a h is d rawing o n a double identity when he writes - both Chinese <—> Canadian are material for metaphor. T h e hyphen a l lows both identities to in form W a h ' s metaphors. The hyphen doubles the creative material /f ield i n m u c h the same w a y that a name 's shortcomings inspires recogni t ion o f a name as a story, or o f naming containing strategy o f approach. The hyphen is a doubl ing : Chinese + Canadian . Chinese(and)Canadian. There is also a doub l ing o f mean ing again, and perhaps a t r ip l ing and quadrupl ing, w i th metaphor. In " H a l f - B r e d Poe t ics" the hyphen is wri t ten as, w h i c h is to say its function is analyzed as, a "property marker , a bounder post, a borderland, a bastard, a ra i l road, a last spike, a stain, a cipher, a rope, a knot, a chain ( l ink) , a foreign w o r d , a warn ing s ign, a head tax, a bridge, a no-man's land, a nomadic , f loating mag ic carpet" (73). W a h ' s rendering o f the hyphen into mul t ip le , s imultaneously funct ioning metaphors is analogous to a name 's s ign embedding mul t ip le stories w i t h i n it. W a h ' s strategy o f rendering the hyphen into metaphor is textual; it mutes the restrictive def ini t ion that be ing named and categorized as Chinese- Canad ian prescribes. That W a h employs a strategy that teases out the stories w i t h i n the hyphen that keeps Chinese and Canad ian together, authorizes the cr i t ica l engagement w i t h not o n l y the close reading and wr i t i ng about names as textural but also as a narrative strategy o f approach that tends towards storied potential and the problems w i t h referentiality. Patina Sometimes it seems a l l surfaces are stubbled | the grassy k n o l l | the peach beard o f promise just a grit shadow | manifest deceit | | sooner o r later y o u kneel on pointed rhetoric and painted crevices | stumble | f la i l | | trouble is | want ing the map to mean before y o u ' v e read it leaves out the danc ing | - from Bill New's Ramus, 42 74 T h e hyphen is punctuation. Chinese ( Canadian. Chinese (parenthetical - an ampl i fy ing or explanatory word , phrase, or sentence) Canadian . Chinese (hyphen - a punctuation mark - used especial ly to d iv ide or to compound words, w o r d elements, or numbers) Canadian . A s punctuation, the hyphen has an affinity w i t h other punctuation. T h e hyphen is enamored w i t h the parenthesis' "provocative(ness) ," or, at least, w i t h h a l f o f it. W a h ' s in t roduct ion o f Garrett B r o w n ' s How to Beat the Game on page 60 o f Diamond Grill is fo l lowed b y an open parenthesis. There is no c los ing parenthesis. B r o w n ' s s ingular ly racist reasoning-cum-analysis that fo l lows is d i sa l lowed a def in i t ion that paral lels the parenthesis' o w n def ini t ion. W a h ' s purposeful e l i s ion o f the end parenthesis cal ls into question the " a m p l i f y i n g " or "explanatory" definit ions for the paragraph that fo l lows . Names , unexamined , neither ampl i fy nor expla in . T h e hyphen is N O T a vi rgule . W a h is N O T Chinese | Canadian . The v i rgu le is too phys ica l ly present. It is too v i sua l l y impos ing - scansion stops at its w a l l . It is a w a l l , not a door. T h e w a l l more transparently signals meaning. W a h sees the resistance to the "hyphenated def in i t ion" (Faking It 92) manifest ing more subtly i n collegiate poets - one poet uses white space i n the midd le o f l ines between words; one poet plays w i t h smaller , but more frequent, gaps, gaps o f 2 or 3 spaces; one poet signals hyphenated meaning w i t h her l ine breaks and enjambments. In these cases, the hyphen manifests as typographical absence, an absence that signals something more. W . H . N e w ' s co l lec t ion o f poetry Raucus (1999) contains many vi rgules - no i sy virgules, v i rgules as palpable presence. F o r N e w they are a strategy for ampl i fy ing meaning. Fo r N e w they are "(a) a cadence stop (b) mus ica l bar l ines (c) geologica l c l a i m l ines , and probably (d) (e) and (eff too)" (Email 10/27/2003). F o r W a h , the hyphen 's i n v i s i b i l i t y is a strategy as w e l l . T h e d iscovery o f the virgules many amplif icat ions is , i n part, a d iscovery o f absence, m u c h as the search for stories i n names 75 discovers the strategy absent i n cursory readings o f plot , character, and setting and the eas i ly passed over "Jordan m y name i s . " T h e hyphen is negation: Chinese N O T Canadian . In this rendering, subject pos i t ion is imposed - Chinese are not, w i l l never be, can not be Canad ian because they are Chinese : See? L o o k ? ! Chinese! The v i sua l i n race requires, as W a h writes, "pur i ty ." Pu r i ty is synonymous w i t h " rea l " (54). Pure Chinese is real Chinese . B u t W a h draws attention to the fact that i n Canada (and perhaps everywhere) there is no such th ing as pure or real : " I f you ' r e pure anything," W a h writes, " y o u can' t be Canad ian" (53). W a h resists an identi ty imposed through negation. "[S]top te l l ing me," W a h frustratedly wri tes , "what I ' m not" (54). However , negation, the minus sign, the hyphen as negation, has also been addi t ive for F r e d W a h . It has a l lowed h i m to explore his o w n identity, his Canad ian identity, his Chinese identity, his Chinese-Canadian identity, his "biotext" ( ix) identi ty, his " f ak ing i t " ( ix) identity, h is poet identi ty, his f ic t ion w r i t i n g identity, and so on . A n n e C a r s o n writes i n Economy of the Unlost that a negative statement "posits a fuller picture o f reali ty than does a posi t ive statement" (Economy 102). F o r example, when I say that the hyphen is not punctuation, I need to k n o w what punctuation is/does, and further, offer m y understanding o f what the alternatives to hyphen as punctuation, or N O T punctuation, might be. B o t h the hyphen and the hyphen as negation have m o b i l i z e d , to some degree, F red W a h ' s N O T silent text and analysis. The silence o f names seeks a s imi l a r m o b i l i t y : an engagement is required w i t h what exists w i t h i n the s ign proper, and the impl ica t ions o f us ing naming a strategy to explicate h o w people strategize their approaches to the w o r l d through language. W a h concludes w i t h a no i sy hyphen. Chinese J3 Canadian . In the last fragment o f Diamond Grill, W a h a l lows, W a h makes, W a h asserts that "the door clangs and rattles a no i sy hyphen" (176). T h e f inal metaphor, the last hyphen i n Diamond Grill is noisy, not 76 silent. T h r o u g h an engagement w i t h the noise W a h creates w i t h his o w n treatment o f the hyphen, the hyphen that connects a compounded noun also becomes no i sy w i t h the questions it inspires. Susan H a h n ends her poem ti t led " T h e P i t y o f Punctuat ion," f i t t ingly, w i t h the period. She wri tes: ...until finally the period did roll in so bleak and yet what a tiny thing it was as I began to feel the fade into the seamless midnight sky with my being given no choice but to curve onto the dot and disappear with it. The hyphen is N O T the per iod. A l t h o u g h Fred W a h is consumed b y the hyphen, he does not disappear into it , or disappear w i t h it. H e explores and controls its ambiguit ies , assumed transparencies, and i m p l i c i t possibi l i t ies . W a h , as Chinese-Canadian , is compl i c i t w i t h the hyphen 's noise. —> A s imi la r explora t ion and attention is required when naming is employed , not o n l y b y W a h , and readers, but b y Spi t and Sumner. THE STORY OF SPIT'S RE-COGNITION The shift that occurs i n the occ luded hyphen between the two stories about Spi t involves a shift into compl i c i t y . I 1 Atten t ion is a task we share, y o u and I. T o keep "Separat ing" and "Sp i t De l aney ' s attention strong means to keep it f rom settling. Is land" are wri t ten i n different points - from Anne Carson's "Note on Method," v i i i . o f v i ew. "Separa t ing" is to ld i n the third person; "Spi t De laney ' s Is land" is i n the first person. The marionette tense turns into the accountabi l i ty tense. The objects that name Spit turn into objects that need storying. Guaranteed meaning turns into archeology w h e n Spit makes a new story for himself , when, on a w h i m , he jo ins Phemie Porter (who calls her A l b e r t De laney , avo id ing the mon ike r he hides behind, ignor ing the spit o f his judgment) o n 77 a journey to the mountains. W h e n i n Phemie ' s company, " two b i g w i n d o w s [are] d iv ided into dozens o f t iny panes" (224). Phemie teaches Spit that the outside frames o f things are further d i v i d e d into other frameable and readable things. T h e ab i l i ty to read what is beh ind the names o f things, what fragmentation makes up their stories, a l lows Spit to learn a self- ref lexivi ty v i s a v i s what a system o f naming instructs h i m about himself . Sp i t ' s cal ls his train a " l o c i " (202). L o c o m o t i v e , locat ion , L o k i (and Thomas K i n g ' s coyote), and an oral emphasis o f the letter i a l l exist i n h is naming . Perhaps a certain k i n d o f madness o f names, p layful madness, Ka te ' s madness, also exists i n fracturing the loco f rom locomot ive . L o c o m o t i v e is easy. Loca t ion impl ies relat ional identity, one that accommodates both objectification and self-reflexivi ty. L o k i is a trickster figure; maybe names are too: attached quiet ly l i ke price-tags on garage-sale items, descr ibing things so the cacophony o f stories l eak ing out o f them don' t keep us up at night. L o k i was also, as one website notes, a "Decontruct ionis t long before D e r r i d a , " 4 3 a figure o f boundary spaces, a player i n the game o f the boundedness o f forms. W h e n enunciated, loc- I returns to Spit , to an insistence o f self-consciousness, o f self-awareness, o f Spi t r ecogn iz ing his l i fe as " a story," an "offer[ ing]" o f " a bit o f [himjself ," an "expos[ure]" (232). Spit learns f rom Phemie about "go ing into y o u r s e l f (223). Phemie asks Spi t a question: " T e l l me a th ing that y o u love and I ' l l tel l y o u a th ing about y o u " ; Spi t replies, " O l d N u m b e r One , " to w h i c h Phemie replies, "What? O l d N u m b e r One? Wha t ' s that? D o y o u mean yourself? T h e n y o u are a m a n w h o is trapped b y your o w n l i m i t s " (229). Spi t doesn' t "correct" (229) her, the si lence a negative space that admits partial compl ic i ty . L o k i p l a y i n g w i t h l imi t s , w i th l i m i n a l spaces, reminds o f R i c o u ' s movement away from habituation, o f learning " l imi t s and poss ib i l i t ies—poss ib i l i t ies that w i l l exceed l i m i t s " http://loki.ragnarokr.com/pipindex.htm. 78 (84). E xc e e d ing reminds o f Phemie ' s experience when A m e r i c a n tourists laugh at her appearance—she experiences a feel ing that "for just a split second [they] touched, [they] over lapped" (233). Phemie ' s moment reminds o f Denn i s L e e s y n o n y m for overlapped, and rhythms that attend to "the w o r l d as it is... not consecutive, but ove r l a id" (43). A n d over la id reminds o f the Arbu tus ' sk in , and the shedding o f that w h i c h contains us, names us, and moments o f renewal and momentum. The act o f r emind ing functions to enact complex , to name var ious ly i n order to name respectfully and interestingly. T H E S T O R Y O F S U M N E R ' S R E - C O G N I T I O N . L o g a n Sumner, b y fits and starts and sweats, transforms throughout Innocent Cities. H e is forced to attend to "b lu r r i ng" (166). W h e n C h u L e e decides against p i l o t i ng Z a c h and Sumner 's newest vers ion o f their f l y ing machine, retreating to "several days o f su lk ing i n his o w n rooms i n the labyr in th o f C h i n a t o w n , " Sumner asks himself , "what sort o f r o o m s ? " (196). H e doesn ' t k n o w because it hadn ' t "occurred to h i m to wonder . . . it had a lways been enough to think o f (196) C h u L e e behind a "cur ta in" or " i n a cupboard" i n order that he not have to think about h i m . " H a d n ' t " here is m o b i l i z e d into Carson ' s negation. A moment where Sumner entertains his o w n strategies o f economy: the place named C h i n a t o w n is differentially diagnosed against Sumner ' s imag ined (or not imagined) C h i n a t o w n and found inadequate—the discrepancy, the inadequacy reflects back onto Sumner himself , an inadequacy o f his o w n approach and is annihilated w i t h the negative "n ' t ." In this cogni t ive moment Sumner decides that he is more uncomfortable w i t h the not k n o w i n g than the occluded k n o w i n g or not imagined k n o w i n g or imagined w r o n g l y k n o w i n g and decides, i n a re- moment m o b i l i z e d b y the failure o f the sign/name " rooms," that "certain things w o u l d have to be reconsidered a l l the w a y to their bo t tom" (197 emphasis added). 79 L o g a n ' s friend and partner, Zachary Jack, l ives i n a shack o f words, o f names: "Bazaar... English Linen Billhead Paper... Zonder... Keatings Bon Boris or Worm Tablets... Fancy Goods" (346), " F L O U R , D E Z A S S E I S , S I D E U P , W A L K I N G " (193). T h e words are from boxes o f supplies f rom trade ships dashed to pieces o n intemperate Wes t Coas t shores; co lonia l ships destroyed leav ing a series o f uncontextual ized names, names w h o ' v e lost their ut i l i ty , names used as s id ing for Z a c h ' s house. T h e named objects ' u t i l i ty is shifted. Z a c h doesn't have m u c h use for locat ing names on their proper things. Z a c h is often j a i l e d because o f "dis turbing the peace" (149), w h i c h is to say mis -naming . M r s . Gr i s t l e , apparently, made apparent b y a night behind bars, is a " l a d y " not a " squaw" (151). Z a c h calls a tree a " lahb ," w h e n i n fact i t ' s an arbutus, is "corrected," takes except ion to the correction, and is th rown into j a i l . W h e n L o g a n ba i l s h i m out he asks, "this tree, what is the name a person has to use i f he don ' t want to be tossed i n that skookum-house again?" (149). The p layful conversat ion that fo l lows is a l l about naming and its arbitrariness, a conversat ion that L o g a n recognizes that Z a c k is "s taging" (150). Arbutus menziesii ( lat in trees i n Canada) i t ' s cal led because it reminded someone o f a European strawberry tree, a n a m i n g after. Z a c k asks, " w h y do the Yankees ca l l the same tree something else right over there across the strait. ' M a d r o n a . ' , " another n a m i n g after, maybe, b y a Spaniard i n Ca l i fo rn i a after " a cous in over i n Spa in w i t h that name" (151). L o g a n replies, "maybe he [the namer] was bo rn o n this continent too, and thought he had the right to name the things he saw" (151), a right not extended to Zacha ry Z a c h . That Z a c h can not name is Z a c h ' s negation, a negat ion that also informs L o g a n ' s transformation. Zach ' s point here is that the power o f n a m i n g should never be left imp l i c i t . L o g a n , when the c i ty counc i l decides to demol i sh his monstrous tombstone, at first resists their reading o f his tombstones as a "romant ic and exaggerated f i c t ion" (404): 80 Such excess o f the ind iv idua l imaginat ion was both unseemly and uncharacteristic o f the nat ion to w h i c h they n o w belonged [and] Sumner was required to demol i sh his ridiculous palace o f fantastical words immedia te ly , and to replace it w i t h a stone as smal l and insignif icant as possible, and to promise to confine h imse l f . . . to the simplest his tor ical facts, ' w h i c h , be ing actual, w i l l be far more interesting to the v is i tor passing through the cemetery at some future date than this fanciful nonsense about a person who , f rankly, . never rea l ly existed. ' (405) Facts. Names . N a m e d things. E c o n o m y . Quiet . L o g a n acquiesces because he can' t "remember any more w h y the tombstone had been important" (405). H e has a wi fe , a c h i l d on the way , a job that a l lows h i m to create architecture out o f his imaginat ion, " r ea l " and "actual" architecture that w i l l be "his tory." L o g a n Sumner does not need the tombstone anymore. N o t : named as such it is both a recogni t ion o f the strategy that kept h i m a l ive (the i rony o f gravestones keeping one a l ive a good story), and a recogni t ion that certain strategies transform into other strategies. N o t : named as such it p lays w i t h the O u r nature l ies i n movement ; complete ca lm is death. - From Bruce Chatwin's Songlines, 163, from Pascal's Pensees. actual i n oppos i t ion to the imaginative, the conversat ion between the two, the f ict ions that are required and the fictions that we create. N o t : named as such it returns to naming , to parallax, to the names for things as fictions, and the fictions or stories i n the names for things. N o t remember ing his need means the naming he engaged i n turned to story, story unlatched to place, stone, or name, but to self. R i c o u ends The Arbutus/Madrone Files w i t h the Anasayu File, fragmenting again into "Tree Language ," "Borde r l i ne , " "Topographies ," "Penumbra ," and "Arbu tus /Madrone . " I have a lways wanted to replace the / i n the title w i t h a hyphen, a negation and replacement that jo ins , but that makes the j o i n i n g problematic , occlusions i n smooth scansion. R i c o u ' s choice, however , is careful ly accurate. T h e y are two names, separate and unique, each w i t h their o w n stories. B u t that they have stories makes them s imi lar , the stories i n names makes 81 them more p r o x i m a l than distal . The point i n the complex created b y the m a n y namings i n R i c o u ' s last file has to do w i t h naming, w i th the language o f shedding (bark), layer ing and embedding, arbitrary borders, vertices that respond to the setting-against-demarcation o f hor izontal l ines, and locat ing oneself w i t h i n penumbra space i n order to locate se l f not statically but i n movement and process. A n d wi th an examinat ion o f the minut iae i n language, o f the different names for different things, w h i c h is to say the different stories o f different things, o f the separate stories from a p o o l o f storied attending. A n d w i t h c lose reading o f punctuat ion, reading that w h i c h should r ight ly not be read, that functions to assist words proper, to separate to mean, punctuation that should remain silent, that does remain silent for many, functional . . Innocent Cities also ends w i t h silence, i n part. K a t e Horncast le and N o r a h Horncas t le have identities not unremoved from their hatred f rom each other, inseparable and inter twined. T h e y sit at opposite tables i n the R e d G e r a n i u m , 4 4 Tuesday after Tuesday, not speaking. T h e last paragraph o f the nove l : " I don' t k n o w exact ly what ' s go ing on here, but I k n o w that one o f them is keep ing the other one al ive, and one o f them is a l l o w i n g the other to try i t . . . they 're t ry ing to b u i l d some k i n d o f new language between them, to b u i l d something out o f si lence that i sn ' t death" (413). The i r language i n silence: the language o f "despair and pleading, hope and reassurance, resentment and hatred, forgiveness and love , fear and c a l m " (413). T h e y communica te without speaking. The i r si lence is a story that speaks. L i s t en ing to names, to their silences turning into stories and what stories communica te about naming , narrative strategies, cogni t ive schemas and ourselves is what is learned f rom K a t e and N o r a h ' s communica t ive silence. That names name their stories i f o n l y w e w o u l d look and Why is it called this? I wonder. 82 listen is what we learn f rom naming as a strategy o f attending. N a m i n g ' s stories enact the crossing o f formal boundaries, enact mob i l i t y . roj D e f i n i t i o n 3.5 83 namer [f. N A M E v. 1 + - E R 1 . ] One w h o , or that w h i c h , gives a name or names. C h a p t e r 3.5 Named Choices: Pedagogy and "directing the reader outward into the ongoing processes of pattern, story, and change" (Dreams xi) duff(n.) 1. a boiled or steamed pudding often containing dried fruit 2. the partly decayed organic matter on the forest floor 3. fine coal 4. buttocks 5. an badly-hit, off- center golf shot 6. an Australian sheep thief 7. my name 8. what people call me T H E STORY OF MY DAD'S STORIES. I have patterned m y te l l ing on some o f the best storytellers I k n o w : H o d g i n s , M a l o u f , K i n g , M c K a y , W a h , Carson , R i c o u , N e w , and m y father. M y father to ld m y wi fe a story the other day, a story about h o w he was saved b y a p i t -bu l l once. Y o u see, he was dat ing this w o m a n who was short on cash, w h i c h he didn ' t m i n d so m u c h cause he had lots, and w h o owned a p i t -bu l l . M y father came to the conclus ion that anyone who owned a p i t -bu l l was extremely needy and so he got out o f the relationship as fast as he cou ld . That was his story about h o w a p i t -bu l l saved h i m . Those are the stories m y dad tells. I k n e w there was something f ishy about the story f rom the beginning; m y wi fe d idn ' t ; I k n o w h o w m y dad tells stories. K n o w i n g that he was e m p l o y i n g a strategy d idn ' t make the 84 story any different: it was just as wonderful . I 've o n l y ever k n o w n m y dad through the stories he tells, p i c k i n g through the desuetude washed up by the tide o f his imagina t ion and history. W h a t I learn about m y father—about the W a r , about emigrat ing to Canada, about farming, about hippies, about Ca l i fo rn ian ja i l s , about his father teaching h i m chess w h i l e he teaches me chess—is a lways mediated b y the stories he tells, b y the act o f te l l ing . It took m e a long t ime to learn that how he crafted stories was a lways more important to me than the facts i n story. M a y b e that's w h y I ' m w r i t i n g about the stories i n names—the texture l eak ing out o f text—and narrative strategies, and cogni t ive models that tel l me about me, and the wor ld . A n d maybe not, maybe I ' m just a storyteller l i k e m y dad. Thomas K i n g ends The Truth About Stories w i t h "Af te rwords : Private Stories." " F o r Na t ive storytellers," he writes, "there is general ly a proper place and t ime to tel l a story" (153). Context latches to storytel l ing, propriety too. K i n g makes the dis t inct ion between different types o f stories: " O r a l stories. Wr i t t en stories. P u b l i c stories. Pr ivate stories. Stories I can tell out loud . Stories I cannot" (154). H e then goes o n to tel l a private story about the Card ina l f ami ly and h i m , one that probably doesn' t r ight ly have a proper place and t ime, one that he doesn't want to te l l , one about a f ami ly he knew, and abandonment, sadness, ethics, and saying platitudes "because i t ' s what you ' r e supposed to say, not because i t ' s true" (161) even though everybody knows it. It's p robably a story y o u should read for yourself , a story about "the m y r i a d o f other codes o f conduct suggested b y our act ions" and h o w w e ' v e "created the stories that a l l o w them to exist and f lour i sh" (164). B u t mos t ly i t ' s a story about te l l ing the stories that w e don ' t want to te l l , o f enacting story even when it makes us uncomfortable, when it posits a lack o f guaranteed meaning. I asked m y s e l f early on i n the process o f w r i t i n g this thesis w h y K i n g chooses to end w i t h his personal story. Part o f the answer is embedded i n the i rony o f K i n g ' s "truth about 85 stories." W h e n we search for truth, w e f ind story. W h e n we f ind story, we enact mu l t ip l e possible readings. W h e n w e find mul t ip le possible readings, w e embrace ambigui ty . T ru th is ambiguous. W h i l e K i n g ' s story i t se l f is important (perhaps more so to h i m than me), as is the k n o w i n g o f as m a n y stories as possible and their m y r i a d o f impl ica t ions about h o w w e attend to the w o r l d , the act o f choos ing to tell it is more so. T H E S T O R Y O F M Y C H O I C E S. I have chosen m y theoretical texts for what I have been ca l l i ng pedagogical reasons. I w o u l d put every s ingle one o f m y theoretical texts on a course syllabus for first-year E n g l i s h ; I p lan o n do ing so w h e n I begin teaching. T h e y are accessible, I think, p rec ise ly because they tell stories, first, and let their stories think through naming. Thomas K i n g tells stories about h o w w e tel l stories, about how stories and their t e l l ing function. A n n e C a r s o n tells the story o f S imon ides ' epitaphs, and h o w the geography o f stone forces a l ayer ing o f meaning, layer ing through the l inguis t ic strategy o f negation. Laur i e R i c o u tells a story about the Pac i f i c Northwest , about its literatures, its ecology, its names, its lessons about the un-bounding o f boundaries. F red W a h tells the story o f his wr i t ing , o f his l i fe i n Diamond Grill, and o f the hyphen, m a k i n g its silence noisy. D o n M c K a y tells the story o f a raven k i l l e d w i t h a shotgun and strung up w i t h bai ler twine to evidence the act, re-stories Genes is , wraps his m i n d around ideas o f "u t i l i t y " and "homage" and "envisag ing" and, o f course, m e t a p h o r — M c K a y tells a story about poetry. W h a t I l i k e about these texts is the different ways i n w h i c h they engage w i t h naming . K i n g says that stories is " a l l w e are"—stories name us. K i m Stafford says that "there are no names but stories"—names are stories. M c K a y writes "name as epitaph" (89)—mobi le stories are beh ind those astonishingly un-mobi le forms. R i c o u says " A r b u t u s / M a d r o n e " and " f i l e s" together—names are category and "k ines i s" (90), k ine t ic thread. M a l o u f unsettles 86 settling. Hodg ins writes characters who have cogni t ive moments enacted by a failure o f referent, b y the instabil i ty o f the names o f things. W h a t I l ike about naming for students is what happens i n that moment when I say I ' m interested i n naming and they reply, "naming wha t?" T o w h i c h I reply naming everything, its a l l about naming; and h o w we name is a reflection on h o w w e index interaction, o f the cognit ive schema that in fo rm our naming strategies. I l i ke wa tch ing what happens to students' faces when they have a recognit ive moment. W h a t I l i ke about naming as a narrative strategy is that it a l lows (forces) students (and me) to stay close to the text, to perform close readings—to look at the strategies employed rather than the one w h o employs them, to look at ambiguous pronouns and repeated words , to l ook at metaphors and their l ies , to engage w i t h the text itself, w i t h its aesthetics, its sensed and sensual qualit ies, to be specific. W h a t I l ike about names is what is h i d i n g behind them (they turn m e into an Archeo log i s t )—etymolog ica l ly , their stories, the slippage that sometimes happens w i t h them, to them, that gets me closer to them and their storied potential. Sumner sl ips into S u m m e r and addi t ion and summoner. D o n M c K a y knows Trevor G o w a r d , a l ichenologis t . D o n M c K a y became engaged w i t h G o w a r d even before he knew h i m as a result o f a his metaphor: " l ichens are.. . fungi that have discovered agricul ture" (105), w h i c h is a naming . G o w a r d is also commit ted to "the spread o f enl ichenment" (105), another naming . I a m engaged b y the slippage, b y w o r d p lay and name play, i n m u c h the same w a y that F red W a h is engaged b y the sl ippage when he types "poetics o f the potent," when potent becomes 'poetent' becomes poet-tent (Faking 194). W h a t I l i ke about w r i t i n g about names is what it m o b i l i z e s i n m y peers, the stories o f their interaction w i t h naming i n literature, the space that the topic seems to create for those 87 engaging w i t h writers w h o name. L a u r a M o s s , i n r ev i ewing the G i l Courtemanche text-box epilogue i n Chapter 2 and C l a x t o n ' s translation o f it, wanted me to delve deeper into the e l i s ion o f " n o m , " got exci ted b y it. Trav i s M a s o n emai led me the f o l l o w i n g two quotations, the first f rom The Songlines b y Bruce C h a t w i n (1988), the second from Thomas H e n r y H u x l e y ' s essay "Sc ience and Cu l tu re" (1881): "Put it this way , " he said. " A n y w h e r e i n the bush y o u can point to some feature o f the landscape and ask the A b o r i g i n a l w i t h you , ' W h a t ' s the story there?' or ' W h o ' s that?' The chances are he ' l l answer ' K a n g a r o o ' or 'Budger iga r ' or ' J ew L i z a r d , ' depending on w h i c h Ances tor w a l k e d that w a y " . . . " A n d the distance between two such sites can be measured as a stretch o f song?" [The question is rhetorical]. (13) So, i f any o f these opponents [to scientif ic education] be left, I w i l l not waste t ime i n v a i n repeti t ion o f the demonstrative evidence o f the pract ical va lue o f science; but k n o w i n g that a parable w i l l sometimes penetrate where sy l log i sms fai l to effect an entrance, I w i l l offer a story for their considerat ion. (526-7). T h i n k i n g about the spaces between names (and perhaps names themselves) as "songs" is s l ippery (and a good) "entry." A n d before I had even drafted m y in t roduct ion—or chosen M a l o u f and Hodg ins , o r read F r e d W a h , or k n e w that D u f f was " a bo i l ed o r steamed p u d d i n g often containing dried f r u i t " — B i l l N e w put the f o l l o w i n g passage i n m y b o x i n the E n g l i s h office w i t h s t icky note attached, " D u f f y - Thought y o u might enjoy this phrase. Cheers , B i l l " : W e k n o w almost nothing o f this lute-maker except the year he a r r ived . . . W e don ' t even k n o w his real name: Mar t inengo is a town i n A u s t r i a n Italy where he m a y have l i v e d for a wh i l e , Leonardo cou ld have been his bapt ismal name. . . and G i o v a n n i is an Italian vers ion o f Juan. So our luthier ' s name was i t se l f a co l lec t ion o f stories. H e was a composi te m a n - made up o f many different parts, rather l i ke one o f his o w n lutes. (Colour - Travels Through the Paintbox, 193). A n d m y wife , K r i s t i n a , w h o does not care m u c h for m y academic wr i t ing , who gets lost i n the words , l i k e d it when I read her m y story o f m y dad 's story and the l ine "the texture leak ing out o f text." W e are a l l namers. W e are a l l storytellers. N a m i n g ' s ub iqu i ty requires attention. Fractal ine moments occur i n the re-cogni t ion that occurs when attending to narrative strategies o f n a m i n g . 4 5 rm Duffy was my grandmother's maiden name. She was a writer. I never knew her. 89 W o r k s C i t e d Primary Texts Hodgins , Jack. "Separat ing." In Spi t De laney ' s Island. Toronto: M a c m i l l a n , 1976. 9—33. . "Sp i t De l aney ' s Is land." In Spit De l aney ' s Island. Toronto: M a c m i l l a n , 1976. 201—235 . Malouf , D a v i d . " B l a c k s o i l Coun t ry . " In D r e a m Stuff. Toronto: Vin tage , 2001 . 116-130. . " Jacko ' s R e a c h . " In D r e a m Stuff. Toronto: Vin tage , 2001. 93—100 . Ancillary Texts Hodgins , Jack. Innocent Ci t i e s . Toronto: M c C l e l l a n d & Stewart, 1990. M a l o u f , D a v i d . R e m e m b e r i n g B a b y l o n . Toronto : Vin tage , 1993. Secondary Texts Carson, A n n e . E c o n o m y o f the Un los t . Pr inceton: Pr inceton Unive r s i ty Press, 1999. K i n g , Thomas . T h e Tru th A b o u t Stories: A N a t i v e Narra t ive . Toronto: A n a n s i Press, 2003 . Lee , Dennis . " B o d y M u s i c : Notes on R h y t h m i n Poetry ." T h i n k i n g and S ing ing : Poetry and the Pract ice o f Ph i losophy . E d . T i m L i l b u r n . Toronto: Cormorant , 2002. 19—58. M c K a y , D o n . V i s a V i s : F i e l d Notes on Poet ry & Wilderness . W o l f v i l l e : Gaspereau Press, 2001 . R i c o u , Laur ie . T h e Arbu tus /Madrone F i l e s : Read ing the Pac i f i c Northwest . Edmon ton : N e W e s t , 2002. W a h , Fred . F a k i n g It: Poet ics & H y b r i d i t y . Edmon ton : N e W e s t , 2000. Post-Secondary Texts Achebe , C h i n u a . H o m e and E x i l e . O x f o r d : O x f o r d U n i v e r s i t y Press, 2000. 90 A r s h a m , Hosse in . " T h e Ze ro Saga and Confus ion W i t h N u m b e r s . " F o u n d at h t tp : / /ubmai l .uba l t . edu /~harsham/ze ro /ZERO.HTM Bla i se , C l a r k e . " T o B e g i n , T o B e g i n . " In Currents: Stories, Essays , Poems , and P lays . 2 n d ed. Eds . W . H . N e w e t a l . Scarborough: Prentice H a l l , 2000. 330—333 . Budde , Robert . "Af te r Pos tco lon ia l i sm: Mig ran t L ines and the Po l i t i c s o f F o r m i n F red W a h , M . Nourbese P h i l i p , and R o y M i k i . " Is Canada Pos tco lonia l? Unse t t l ing Canadian Literature. E d . Laura M o s s . Water loo : W i l f r i d Laur ie r U n i v e r s i t y Press, 2003 . 282—294. Carson, A n n e . Au tob iography o f R e d . N e w Y o r k : Vin tage , 1998. —. M e n i n the O f f Hours . N e w Y o r k : Vin tage , 2000. — — . . Short Ta lk s . L o n d o n : B r i c k B o o k s , 1992. C h a t w i n , Bruce . Songl ines . Toronto: Penguin . 1988. Cla rke , George E l l io t t . "Introduction to the Tenth Ann ive r sa ry E d i t i o n . " W h v l a h Fa l l s . Vancouve r : Polestar, 2000. x — x x v . Courtemanche, G i l . A Sunday at the P o o l i n K i g a l i . Trans. Pa t r ic ia C l a x t o n . M o n t r e a l : Vin tage , 2004. . U n D i m a n c h e a l a P isc ine a K i g a l i . Quebec: D i m e d i a , 2002. de K o k , Ingr id . 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Pract ica l E c o c r i t i c i s m : Literature, B i o l o g y , and the Envi ronment . Char lo t tesvi l le : U o f V i r g i n i a P , 2003. L e G u i n , U r s u l a K . A W i z a r d o f Earthsea. Toronto: C o l l i e r M a c m i l l a n Canada, 1991. Lee , Dennis . " B o d y M u s i c : Notes on R h y t h m i n Poetry." T h i n k i n g and S ing ing : Poet ry and the Pract ice o f Ph i losophy . E d . T i m L i l b u r n . Toronto: Cormorant , 2002. 19—58. Le i t ch , Thomas M . W h a t Stories A r e : Nar ra t ive Theory and Interpretation. U n i v e r s i t y Park : Pennsy lvan ia State Un ive r s i ty , 1986. Leggatt, Judi th . " N a t i v e W r i t i n g , A c a d e m i c Theory : Pos t -co lon ia l i sm across the Cu l tu ra l D i v i d e . " Is Canada Pos tcolonia l? Unse t t l ing Canadian Literature. E d . L a u r a M o s s . Wate r loo : W i l f r i d Laur ie r U n i v e r s i t y Press, 2003 . 111—126. L i l b u r n , T i m . L i v i n g i n the W o r l d as i f it W e r e H o m e . Dunvegan: Cormorant , 1999. M c K a y , D o n . " T w i n f l o w e r . " In A N e w A n t h o l o g y o f Canad ian Literature i n E n g l i s h . Eds D o n n a Bennett and Russe l l B r o w n . D o n M i l l s : O x f o r d , 2002. 863. M o s s , Laura . "Is Canada Postcolonia l? Introducing the Ques t ion ." Is Canada Pos tco lonia l? Unse t t l ing Canad ian Literature. E d . L a u r a M o s s . Wate r loo : W i l f r i d Laur ie r U n i v e r s i t y Press, 2003. 1—23. — — . "The Po l i t i c s o f Eve ryday H y b r i d i t y : Zad ie Smi th ' s White Teeth." Wasafiri. 39. (Summer 2003): 11—17. 92 Nuesse l , F rank H . T h e Study o f Names : A G u i d e to the Pr inc ip les and Top ic s . Westpor t : G r e e n w o o d Press, 1992. N e w , W . H . Dreams o f Speech and V i o l e n c e : T h e A r t o f the Short S tory i n Canada and N e w Zealand. Toronto: Un ive r s i t y o f Toronto Press, 1987. . G r a n d c h i l d o f E m p i r e : A b o u t Irony. M a i n l y i n the C o m m o n w e a l t h . "The 2002 Garnett Sedgewick M e m o r i a l Lecture ." Vancouve r : Ronsda le Press, 2003. . Raucous . L a n t z v i l l e : Oo l i chan , 1999. O ' B r i e n , Susie. " A r t i c u l a t i n g a W o r l d o f Difference: E c o c r i t i c i s m , Pos t co lon ia l i sm and G l o b a l i z a t i o n . " Canadian Literature 170.171 (2001): 140-58. O k r i , B e n . A W a y o f B e i n g Free. L o n d o n : Phoenix House , 1997. Ondaatje, M i c h a e l . A m T s Ghost . Toronto: Vin tage , 2000. R i c o u , Laur ie . " R e g i o n , R e g i o n a l i s m . " E n c y c l o p e d i a o f Literature i n Canada. 1 s t ed. 2004. Roberts, M a r y D . The Ghos t o f the F i f th Door . Phi lade lphia : M a c R a e Smi th , 1968. Rushdie , Sa lman. Ha roun and the Sea o f Stories. L o n d o n : Granta B o o k s , 1990. R y a n , S i m o n . " Inscr ib ing the Empt iness ." De - sc r ib ing empire : Pos t - co lon ia l i sm and Textual i ty . Eds . Chr i s T i f f i n and A l a n L a w s o n . N e w Y o r k : Rout ledge, 1994. 1 1 5 - 130. Stafford, K i m R . The Granary. Pit tsburgh: C a r n e g i e - M e l l o n U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1982. . H a v i n g Eve ry th ing Righ t : Essays o f Place. L e w i s t o n : Conf luence Press, 1986. T o l k i e n , J . R . R . The H o b b i t or There and B a c k A g a i n . L o n d o n : George A l l e n & U n w i n , 1976. W a h , Fred . D i a m o n d G r i l l . Edmonton : NeWes t , 1996. . "Is a D o o r a W o r d ? " Mosaic 31A (Dec. 2004): 39—70 . W a r d , Geoff . "Poet ics ." In G lossa l i a : A n Alphabe t o f C r i t i c a l K e y w o r d s . Eds . Ju l i an Wol f r eys and H a r u n K a r i m Thomas . Ed inburgh : E d i n b u r g h Un ive r s i t y Press, 2003 Z w i c k y , Jan. W i s d o m and Metaphor . K e n t v i l l e : Gasperau, 2003.

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