moons a text for performance Goesta Struve

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moons a text for performance Goesta Struve
XII
moons
a text for performance
adapted from the
Book of Chance
by
Goesta Struve-Dencher
1
- 12 MOONS INTRODUCTION
The Sovereign Gua of the Twelve Moons Sequence has a number of properties that
render it attractive as a basic 'proof of concept' for the Y(i) Project, but its formal regularity does
eliminate some of the more unpredictable data that could be used, for example, to inspire the
musical or rhythmic elements of the piece. Its existing relationship to the months of the year, on
the other hand, supplies a ready-made 'literary' theme: we tend to be attracted by the conceptual,
structural and metaphorical aspects of natural cycles. As Brad Hatcher points out in his section on
the "Twelve Earthly Branches," these hexagrams were probably assigned to the calendar from the
beginning. Heyboer's hypothesis relates the hexagrams to the visual appearance of the Zhou
sundial throughout the year.
Since the sequence represents a cycle, beginning and ending are arbitrary. I chose to
begin with Gua 19, whose content suggested, to me, the germination of a process ("taking
charge", while the preceding Gua in the sequence (24) suggested closure ("return"). Gua 19 also
happened to fall on January. That this sort of 'regrouping' of energies should happen in the middle
of winter seems apropos. Other overall impressions: between Gua 1 & 2 (all closed - all open),
the imagery suggests a moving outwards, separation; Between Gua 2 & Gua 1 (the other half of
the cycle), a pulling together, return. That the outwards move, or tangible growth/creation, should
begin in May, with the budding grain, and have spent itself by October, with the first frost, also
seems to make some kind of sense. The other most important complementary pair, Guas 11/12,
earth over heaven & heaven over earth, of course fall half-way between 1 & 2, and Gua 11
(Expansion) also begins the 'conventional' arrangement of the Sequence (Gua 12, Obstruction or
Separation, falls on the turning from summer to autumn, when the temperature starts dropping
again).
GEOMETRY
Because of the given pattern, complementary pairs of hexagrams 'radiate' outwards from
the two 'nodes' represented by Gua 1 (111111) and Gua 2 (000000):
… 1, 44, 33, 12, 20, 23, 2, 24, 19, 11, 34, 43, 1, 44, 33, 12, 20, 23, 2 …
x
a
b
c
d
e o
e
d
c
b
a x
a b
c
d
e o
Which is actually more obvious in the numbers corresponding to the King Wen sequence (above),
than in the decimal equivalents of the (more logical) binary arrangement (below; in the binary
1&0's sequence, not shown, it is of course visually obvious):
… 63, 31, 15, 7, 3, 1, 0, 32, 48, 56, 60, 62, 63, 31, 15, 7, 3, 1, 0 …
So much, as a start, for the visual & numerical 'geometry' as it is superimposed on the
seasonal cycle. This is the link between the formal structure of the performance and its "literary"
(to use Kirby's terminology) meaning or content. Thus we determine the overall arrangement of
the imagery and dialogue of the performance, which will in turn be based on the visual and verbal
content of each hexagram. Whenever a ('literary') dramatic image is launched towards the
audience according to this basic arrangement, we are operating at one end of the formal/literary
spectrum; whenever a sound or abstract movement is performed based on the
numerical/geometric nature of the same hexagram, we are operating at the other, purely formal,
end.
2
GOALS
The goal of this entire process is, of course, to stimulate some kind of engaging aesthetic
response and/or matrix of meanings in the audience. It is hoped that the experience may resemble,
to varying degrees, a contemporary dance, a formalist experiment by Oscar Schlemmer, a John
Cage performance, an elaborate esoteric ritual, an experimental performance (Carbon 14, Robert
Wilson) and an avant-garde drama (Ionesco / Müller / Handke / LePage). The following written
text itself is intended to generate a unique performance from each production team. There is no
'right' way to perform this text, although, by selecting these specific elements of the Zhouyi, using
translations I happen to like, and arranging them in this particular way, I have of course inserted
myself into the process in a major way, as an author - though by no means the last in the
evolution of the text towards performance.
I see the fundamental dramaturgical role in this process to consist of the culling, analysis
and arrangement of relational matrices. The ultimate goal of the project would be to delve further
into the dizzying range of patterns and associations, within the Yijing, and between the Yijing
and other structures, especially that of DNA. While I suggest that the soundscape to accompany
12 Moons resemble, in form, the various 'DNA music' examples, I am not yet prepared to make
other associations between the two structures. the "Book of Chance : Book of Life" overlay, as
hinted at in the process report, has not been attempted here.
THE TEXT
The raw materials for this process have been deliberately and unashamedly 'appropriated'
with little regard for 'authenticity.' I have made some effort to retain something of the spirit of the
original as I understand it. What follows is a very basic example of a playtext, such as could be
derived from a fairly literal adaptation of the accompanying matrices for 12 Moons. I have chosen
this approach, which foregrounds - at least on the page - dialogue, since I am not equipped either within the scope of this project or without creative collaborators - to compose, choreograph
and design an elaborate audiovisual performance. Nevertheless, the visual & aural aspects of 12
Moons are just as important as the verbal. My own preference, given the resources, would be to
create a performance work with few or no intelligible words or sentences, based purely on formal
structure, concrete sound and visual imagery (a Wilsonian 'silent opera' or a hybrid work in the
vein of his Letter to Queen Victoria or of LePage's Geometry of Miracles).
3
- 12 MOONS Scene divisions are to be acknowledged visually in some way, as distinct dramatic and/or temporal units.
This may be as basic as projecting the Roman numeral or the Gua of the scene - or some other aspect of its
place in the sequence, such as the month - at the beginning of each scene.
Music: based on the (numerical and/or geometric) properties of the hexagrams and their sequence(s).
The name of the hexagram may be used to define a general theme for the scene. The place, time, climate &
central image (1st 4 lines) can be interpreted on a number of levels consistent with the style of the
production (including ignoring one or more of them altogether), but their physical realization will probably
tend towards the abstract and gestural rather than the naturalistic or representational.
The six characters who are not engaged in the dialogue of the current scene (and who represent the
complementary hexagram) will participate in the activity of the chorus, which consists primarily of
interpreting the central image of the scene. The mode (5th line) suggests how the action ought to be
embodied (its energy, vectors, rhythm …).
The actions of the six characters engaged in dialogue need not be separate from those of the
'complementary' cast members and chorus. They could be part of the forming of the 'image,' in conflict with
it, or entirely unrelated to it. At other times, the chorus may have completed its movement and gathered to
observe or assist the actions of the six.
The 'exits' and 'entrances' as marked are from/to the group, not necessarily on/off the stage.
Characters:
1-6:
3 women & 3 men in black
7-12:
3 men and 3 women in white
(chorus of 6-12 'dancers' in b&w or grey)
4
-I(Gua 19: Taking Charge)
place: a hill above a marsh
time: January
climate: Ice. Snow. Unrelenting nature.
image: the Great Eye oversees creation
mode: taking charge patiently and dispassionately.
1, 2, 9, 10, 11, 12 enter from opposite corners, come together at center.
all:
10:
12:
1:
9 (to 11):
11 (to 9):
10:
11:
1:
2 (to 1):
9:
12 (to 9):
10:
12 (to 10):
11 (to 9):
9 (to 11):
11:
9:
11:
9:
2:
1:
12:
11 (to 2)
9:
10:
9:
12:
9:
12:
11:
9:
2:
United!
In complete …
… authentic …
… commitment!
Sweet …
Informed. Commitment. Taking Charge.
Without mistakes …
(to 10) … a necessity. (to 1) Opportune?
Promising - if persistent.
Promising?
Sweet …
Promising!
Without mistakes?
Nothing wrong!
A great …
Not …
… opportunity … if …
Avoid …
… if informed …
… errors.
Nothing cannot be turned to advantage. United.
Persistent.
Promising.
A great …
Not an orientation with …
… complete …
… merit. Finish indulging …
"Authentic … grieving …
- Fulfillment?"
… necessity.
No ground. Merit. Indulging in this …
Nothing cannot be …
5
9:
2:
9:
2 (to 9):
(9 leaves)
… sweet …
… turned to …
… sweet …
Nothing -
Fire Phases
Amino Acid Hypercube
6
- II (Gua 11: Interplay)
place: A river at the foot of the mountain
time: February
climate: spring rains, floods
image: Heaven and earth unite; their offspring perpetuates the natural order.
mode: harmonious, reciprocal action rises above adversity
(1,2,10,11,12 move in & out; 3 enters)
the others, in a jumble, moving:
do not advance/from within/persist/disgraceful/grass
roots/alliances/neglect/another cluster/explain the orders/expedite/military
3 waits.
12:
The city wall falls back …
2 (interrupts): Embrace the wilderness!
12:
… into the moat. (commanding) Do not advance the military from the
district. (to 3, quietly imploring) Explain the orders.
3 (to 12):
Do not worry. (to all, an announcement) "There is no level …
11 (shouts): Lord Yi's gift …!
3:
… no level without a slope, no going …
11:
… of his …
3:
… without a return." Do not worry …
11:
… his little sister in marriage!
3:
It is difficult to persist without errors. Interplay. These certainties 12 (dismayed):To persist is disgraceful!
11:
… the way to happiness?
2: (protests): Impermanent alliances, aloofness and neglect …
11:
… to "supreme good fortune?"
3:
Do not worry. In nourishment find 10:
Fluttering and fussing, fussing and fluttering …
3:
Do. Not. Worry.
1:
Pulling up grass roots …
10:
Not guarding the way ...
1:
Another cluster, promising to expedite …
10:
… the way to the truth.
3:
These are certainties: in nourishment …
2 (climbs up): Embrace the wilderness! Avoid …!
3 (to 2):
No going with no errors; (to all) find …
2:
Avoid aloofness and neglect. Learn the value in balanced action: "Cross
the river without a boat!"
3:
In Nourishment find all (cheer):
Without a boat!
7
3:
- happiness. Do not worry. (A beat. Gives up.)
10 (dismissive):Not much enrichment by way of these neighbours.
12:
The city wall falls. From within 10 (mutters): Fluttering and fussing. Fussing and fluttering. Fluttering and … (leaves)
12:
- Fulfillment. Do not advance the military. Explain the orders:
11 (to 3):
His little sister in marriage!
12:
To persist is disgraceful.
general assent
11:
"Smallness departs, greatness arrives."
8
- III (Gua 34: Big and Strong)
place: rocks (jutting against the sky).
time: March; equinox
climate: Thunder above.
image: Insects awaken the Man of Stone.
mode: powerful and persistent, with increasing vigour.
(4 enters.)
12:
1:
3:
12:
12:
1:
3:
12:
3:
12:
4:
2:
2:
1:
11:
4:
11:
4:
11 leaves.
The billy goat butts the hedge.
Powerful in the toes.
The billy goat butts the hedge, entangling his horns.
No power to pull back No power to follow through.
To go boldly bodes ill.
Persistence is trouble.
Not a direction with merit. But problems give rise to opportunities.
Ordinary people apply force; the noble youth uses nets.
Worthwhile to persist.
The great vehicle's power is in the axle mount.
Persistence is promising.
The noble youth will not take a step …
… except out of respect.
Losing the goat in the exchange …
Persistence is promising while regrets pass.
… no regrets.
The hedge breaks open.
9
- IV (Gua 43: Decisiveness)
place: the royal court
time: April
climate: clear & bright, grain rain
image: the lake rises into the sky.
mode: with decisiveness, though the truth is dangerous.
1, 2, 3, 4 +12, excited, among themselves:
A disclosure at the royal court / A truthful appeal / This will be serious /
Inform the home town / Not worth resorting to violence / Worthwhile to
have somewhere to go.
5 enters, raising a Speaking Staff. The others fall silent.
5 (commanding):
Decisiveness.
1 to 4 line up, then a gap, then 12 at the end, head bowed (now the only one in black).
5 hands the staff to 1. A beat. 1 divines.
1 (cautiously):
"Vigorous in advancing the toes,
going forward is less than sucessful.
Mistakes will be made."
1 hands the staff to 5 & steps back. A nervous beat, then relief. 2 tenses. 5 hands the staff
to 2. A beat. 2 divines.
2 (slowly):
Frightened and calling out …
(more optimistic):
This is nobody's night for hostilities:
Do not worry.
As above; the staff goes to 3. 3 divines.
3:(eloquently, as if to best 1)
"Vigorous in the cheekbones,
- presuming the worst the noble young one is resolved and decided:
Advancing all alone to greet the rain
As if getting wet were displeasure." A beat. Puzzled.
(with a brave smile) Nothing is wrong.
As above; the staff goes to 4. 4 divines. Confronts 5 (1-3 cower, move away from 4)
4 (a challenge):
"A rump with no skin:" One's progress is second-rate now.
To be led like a sheep, regrets would pass But to hear the words is not comprehension!
4 thrusts the staff at 5 & bows head. A tense silence.
5 smiles. Gently taking the staff from 4:
5:
"Wild greens on dry land, determined to uproot."
4 joins 1-3.
To balance the behaviour is not a mistake.
5 waits. 12 steps forward. Does not take the staff.
12: (steadily)
No cry for help. The outcome will be unfortunate.
12 is sacrificed. They surround & block 12 from view.
10
-V(Gua 01: Creating)
place: the heavens
time: May
climate: beginning of summer
image: the inexhaustible movement of a group of dragons without a leader.
mode: energetic, intuitive and without rest.
1 - 5 in a circle (as at the end of IV). 6 rises from the center, holding winged-dragon costume and bestows
it on 1. With 1 as the subject/protagonist, the following dance numbers are enacted between 1 and the
chorus, representing the 'dragon's' progress. The 'dragon' moves higher each time, until he disappears into
the sun at the end of 5.
i:
"Lurking Dragon - not at all useful"
ii:
"Dragon appears in the field.
rewarding to encounter someone so distinguished"
iii:
"Somehow to dance across the deep
With no mistakes."
iv:
"Dragon in flight across the sky.
rewarding to encounter someone so distingushed"
v:
"Arrogant dragon will have regrets."
The following text is to serve as the basis for a song, (or else as a lyrical refrain repeated for
each stage above), to be performed by 3& 2,4,5,6:
3:
all:
chorus:
(a) noble young one,
throughout the day,
creating, creating;
by nightfall looking frightful.
a struggle
(but) not an error.
the greatest fulfillment
rewards persistence.
11
- VI (Gua 44: Dissipation)
place: a wind(-y plain) beneath the sky
time: June. Summer solstice
climate: warm, windy
image: The unmarried queen begets an heir. Birth.
mode: powerful and in all directions.
4+2 together. An empty wicker basket between them. 7 enters, joins them.
4:(looking at the sky. disappointed) No fish.
7:
Persistence.
Pause. They look at the sky. It gets increasingly more windy (from SR). Light objects
(hats, paper, leaves, tumbleweeds) drift across the stage. 7 pulls out a hammer, a metal
brace and some twine, hammers the brace into the ground and ties up the basket as well
as 4 & 2. Note: the sounds, if any, for the storm should not drown out normal speech.
Unnaturally slowly, dance-like, protectively and carefully, 5 crosses from SL to SR,
cradling two melons wrapped in mats made of (willow) twigs. As the storm builds, 5
slows down even more, but appears to be held down by the weight of the melons. 5 will
reach the other side only when delivering the line.
2 (cheery):
Nothing is wrong.
Members of the chorus pass by, carrying various bundles and objects, drifting with or
struggling against the wind depending on their direction.
6 arrives from upstage, wearing antlers. Various small objects are stuck on the tines.
Shrugs.
6:
Embarrassing. No harm done.
Pulls an apple from the horns and eats it, drifting SL with the storm. Exit.
3 crawls on from SL. Flayed and bleeding, tangled up in a noose fixed to a branch.
7 (clinging to the brace, points at 3): Look at the wretch.
3:
Brutal.
7:
Sure to limp, after.
3:
But not a complete mistake.
7: (letting go of the brace, waves)
Somewhere to go. Is blown off by the wind.
3 doggedly crawls on, eventually passing 5. Some others fall to their knees, struggling
against the storm. Others fall & roll off SL, try again. Some drift across without touching
the ground.
A pale naked woman wanders past 2 & 4, unaffected by the mayhem. 4 tries to follow her,
but is restrained by the rope like a balloon on a string. Almost reaching the woman, 4
pulls a flower out of his coat. The woman walks past as if he were invisible and is joined
12
by two other, similarly pale, naked women. Together they float off USR (i.e. against the
direction of the wind). 2 reels 4 back in. 4 is disappointed.
5 (reaching the other side): They will have fallen from heaven. Exit SR. A beat.
A large fish flies through the air and lands in the basket.
2:(cheery)
A fish. Nothing is wrong.
The basket tears from its mooring and flies off SL. A beat.
2:
But this will not benefit the guests.
4:(disappointed)No fish. A beat.
2: (cheery)
Nothing is wrong.
4 is torn away and flies off SL.
2: (less cheery)Nothing is wrong.
2 is torn away and flies off SL. The wind subsides. 44 fish fall from the sky in a heap,
followed by a pair of antlers.
- Intermission -
13
- VII (Gua 33: Distancing)
place: on a mountain
time: July
climate: hot
image: The fleeing piglet tries not to be eaten.
mode: all in a tangle, with little persistence.
7&8 enter from one side and watch the chorus. 3, 4, 5 & 6 from the other, in a group, by
themselves.
3,4,5,6 (repeatedly, overlapping, various tones:)
Retreat. Retreat! Retreat? (Etc.)
(After a while, one by one the following words are rhythmically interjected:)
2: Entangled
3: Elective
4: Commendable
5: Resourceful
Meanwhile, 7&8 cheer & heckle the chorus' pursuit of the 'piglet':
7:
Withdrawing the tail?
8:
Tie it up!
7:(mocking) "Withdrawing the tail in trouble …"
8:
Tie it!
7:(to piglet) Somewhere to go?
8:
None will succeed …
7:
Not at all useful!
8:
… getting loose …
7:
To have somewhere to go-o-o!
8:
With rawhide! Tie it up 7:
"Trouble, trouble, tail in trouble…"
8:
With yellow rawhide. Won't succeed 7:
Not at all useful! Withdrawing …
8:
None will succeed 7:
… the tail. The tail in trouble.
8:
- will succeed in getting loose.
(Etc. more quietly, or just subdued applause, boos & cheers, during the following:)
4:
5:
6:
3:
6:
3:
4:
5:
3:
4:
Elective retreat.
Commendable.
Resourceful!
Entangled! To manage One's …
Advantage …
To…
Opportunity?
Persistence.
To manage …
The Noble Young One's -
14
6: (to 4)
4: (to 6)
6: (to 3)
3:
4:
3:
4:
3:
6:
4:
6:
3:(bitter)
6:
4:
5:
4:
3:
4:
3:
5:
4:`
3:
5:
6: (soothing)
3:
6:
3:(at 6)
6:(after 3)
A beat.
6:
5:
4:
5,6:
4:
6:
4:
6:
4:
5:(at 4)
4:
5:
4:
5:
4:
Advantage.
- Opportunity…
… turned to …
Anxiety and distress. To manage …
The common people …
… One's servants and …
The common people …
… servants and …
Nothing cannot be … negate …
- cannot be turned And concubines (!) would have been - to advantage?
… opportunity - the Noble Young One's …
Commendable.
… opportunity!
Distress! Entangled retreat becomes anxiety The Common - and Distress. To manage One's Servants Persistence is promising …
People negate.
- One's Servants and Concubines would have been Promising.
Nothing - timely.
- cannot be turned to …
Would have been Timely! (turns on heel & goes)
… to advantage!
Resourceful …
Commendable …
Elective retreat.
…
The common people negate the …
Nothing cannot be turned … the …
- to advantage.
… the oppor…
Persistence … the …
- Is … th …
- Promising.
…
15
5 & 6 smile. An uproar from the chorus. The 'piglet' has been caught and is being tied to
a pole and carried off. Someone has placed a crown of some sort on its head in mockery.
7 & 8 look across the stage at 4,5 & 6.
- VIII (Gua 12: To Say No)
place: Underneath (a heavy sky).
time: August.
climate: muggy, overcast, oppressive.
image: An offering of expiation. Letting go. Freeing.
mode: At first reluctantly. Then humbly. Finally joyfully.
7, 8, 4, 5, 6. 9 enters with a (monk's or pilgrim's) walking staff & embraces 7, who is
overjoyed. 8 is skeptical. 5 & 6 observe & comment. 4 is pensive.
7:
Pulling up thatch grass
7:
Persistence roots … roots, up … with
8:
The …
this!
7:
- is 8:
- Servitude! Worthless.
8:
… common …
7:
Another, with this,
7:
- promising and another cluster …
8:
The common …
another … another!
7:
- and satisfying!
8 (scoffs):
"Fulfillment!"
Persistence is.
9 (smile, to 8): Embracing the unworthy8:
…!
8:
Worthless. The common
A look. A beat. A breath.
one's promise is 9:(softly)
Em-brace-ing.
8:
…
7:
Persistence, per-sis-tense!
4:
This kind of thing With this. Thatch. Grass
Roots! Is Satisfying!
Promising and Satisfying.
6 (to 5):Overcoming the … the, the
…the… ? … At first, denial.
Then …
4:
- is not a mistake.
7 (nervous excitement, to 9):
With this, with this!
Pulling. Pul-l-ling!
8 (aloof):
The common one's
promise: Embracing -
9 (a smile)"Embracing the Unworthy."
8 (can't take it): Servitude! Embracing
servitude! The-common-one'spromise-is-the-mature-one'sworthless-fulfillment.
"Worth-less!!"
8 is speechless.
16
5:
9:
5:
6:
5:
"… Smallness arrives."
As surely as … rejoicing.
… as … (?)
6:
4:
Denial, then rejoicing.
This kind of … thing.
… the separation? Ending the
Separation?
6:
Overcoming the separation.
5:(dawning)
"The Mature Being's Promise..."
5:(remembers, to self:)
… mulberry seedlings. This
passes, that passes, as surely as
mulberry seedlings.
6:
5:(awed)
"The Mature Being's Promise..."
4 crosses to & humbly greets 9, who
hands 4 the staff. 4 faces 8.
4:
Having higher purpose is not a
mistake, but differs from
happiness. (Slowly walks off.)
5:
"Greatness departs …"
"Overcoming." (A beat.)
- IX (Gua 20: Perspective)
place: In the town.
time: September equinox.
climate: autumn wind and white dew.
image: The Great Heron: contemplation, devotion, cleansing.
mode: inquisitively but objectively (with perspective)
A dance.
7:
A Childlike perspective
Suits little people's existence.
5:
6:
Observing our own lives
Observing others’ lives
9:
Observing our own lives in advances and retreats
8:
A prying perspective
Serves a young woman’s persistence
17
10 arrives, studying the horizon with binoculars or a camera.
5:
Observing our own lives
6:
Observing others’ lives
9:
Observing our own lives in advances and retreats
10 joins in:
10:
Observing a country’s splendors
10:
Is instructive for the guest of the sovereign
The group dances with 10.
5:
Observing our own lives
6:
Observing others’ lives
9:
Observing our own lives in advances and retreats
10 is nudged into the center of the circle.
5:
Observing our own lives
6:
Observing others’ lives
5:
The noble youth does no harm
6:
The noble youth does no harm
5 snatches 10's optical instrument and runs off.
-X(Gua 23: Decomposing)
place: The palace
time: October
climate: Hoarfrost
image: The Wine Skin & The Knife.
mode: restless, rebellious, self-destructive.
11 enters. 6 is now the only one in black.
The Mountain Depends on the Earth
(A Villanelle)
6:
When the ripest fruit is not eaten
The young ruler looks to the future
And the common people tear down their shacks
7:
Depriving the bed of its legs
Persistence might bring advantage
When the ripest fruit is not eaten
6:
8:
Depriving the bed of distinctiveness
Not to persist is unfortunate
18
6:
And the common people tear down their shacks
10:
Depriving the bed of its flesh
Is cutting close to disaster
When the ripest fruit is not eaten
6:
9:
Curtailing oneself is not a mistake
The mountain depends on the earth
And the common people tear down their shacks
6:
11:
A line of fishes from the palace to the poor
Nothing cannot be turned to advantage
When the ripest fruit is not eaten
And the common people tear down their shacks
6:
6 departs.
- XI (Gua: 02: Accepting)
place: The Fields of Dao.
time: November
climate: Winter begins, light snow.
image: To lead - confusion; to follow - to learn mastery.
Mode: receiving, accepting, and enduring.
12 arrives and joins the others. All are engaged in laborious, repetitive, silent activity,
inspired by the following text (see below for an example):
7:
Walking on frost;
hardened ice results.
8:
Straight, square and whole.
Without repetition, nothing cannot be turned to advantage.
9:
Restraining display is suited to persistence.
The achievement of someone engaged in a noble service is
never complete.
10:
Tied up in a bag - no blame, no praise.
11:
Golden dress - most promising.
12:
Dragons at war in the wild;
they bleed indigo and golden.
19
Example:
12 is brought on by crew on a sedan chair or pedestal; 12 is meditating (all in white), his/her long white
hair and/or beard flowing down onto the ground. With a long stick, 12 is drawing pictograms in a
sandbox.
7 is braiding the hair brought by 9 into a thread and rolling it into a ball silvery-white wool. A basket of
such balls of wool next to 7.
8 is using a tiny loom to weave squares of fabric from the wool spun by 7. A number these squares in a
basket next to 8.
9 Does the following tasks in a cycle: serves tea; smooths the sand with a plank; combs 12's hair; cleans
the comb and brings the hair to 7. Brings a ball of wool from 7 to 8. Brings a fabric square from 8 to 10.
Hangs up the dyed fabric squares in a row, to dry (we see an apparently random, linear pattern of blue &
yellow). Takes the dry square from the end of the line to 11 & returns to 12.
10 blind(-folded), dyes the small squares of fabric in either of two vats, one containing a golden yellow, the
other a dark (indigo) blue dye.
11 is assembling the squares into a large, round or square, half-finished tapestry suspended behind the
ancient one. Even though 12 is lining up the coloured squares in the sequence determined by the blind(folded) 10, one is able to make out that the image of a (golden) dragon (on a blue ground) is being formed,
though, judging from the process, it is taking millenia to finish.
20
- XII (Gua 24: Returning)
place: A (watch-)tower.
time: December, winter solstice.
climate: Heavy snow
image: Thunder dwells within the earth
Mode: Coming and going in familiar patterns. Then pulling together, gathering strength.
8, 9, 10, 11, 12 facing in different directions. Variously taking a step forward, back,
turning around, sitting down, standing up, trading places &c. Remaining more or less
where they are.
12:
10:
12:
9:
10:
12:
10:
9:
12:
8:
12:
9:
11:
9:
12:
9:
12:
8:
10:
12:
10:
Lost.
Alone.
Grave.
No blame.
Walking.
Grave errors, trying to advance.
In the middle, all alone.
Difficulty, but no blame.
There will be calamity trying To return?
- trying to advance, in the end. misfortune. A major defeat.
But no blame.
Honest return, with no regrets.
Difficulty. But no Unable! After ten years. Lost.
- blame.
Ominous.
To return - all alone - After ten years …
… walking.
1 enters (the only character in black). All turn to 1.
1:
8:
1:
12:
1:
Most promising.
Promising…
Most. Not far.
In the end Nothing worthy of regret.
21
11:
Honest return. With no regrets.
8:
Promising.
1:
Most promising. Not far to return. Not 10:
Alone.
1:
Not.
12:
Lost.
8:
Content to … (?)
1:
To return.
11:
With no 9:
Difficulty. Repeated 12:
Major.
9:
- Difficulty. But no blame.
12:
There will be errors.
11:
Regrets.
1:
Nothing worthy of regret. Not far 10:
Walking?
1:
- to return.
A beat.
8:
9:
10:
11:
12:
1:
Content to return.
Difficulty. But no blame.
Walking all alone in the middle.
Honest. With no regrets.
After ten years. Lost.
To return.
A beat. 8,9,10,11,12 exit in opposite directions.
1:
Most promising.
1, on an elevator trap, disappears below (if machinery is unavailable, 1 exits upstage into
the light). The stage is in the same configuration as at the beginning of scene I. Whiteout,
then Blackout.
- FIN -
22
TEXTUAL SOURCES:
Hatcher, Brad. The Book of Changes: A Linear Translation. <http://www.hermetica.info/>
Heyboer, LiSe . YiJing: Book of the Returning Sun. <http://www.anton-heyboer.org/index.html>
Kho, Pieng-Lam. YiJing Matrices. < http://acomp.usf.edu/~pkho/yijing/a_yijing.htm>
Kho, Pieng-Lam. YiJing and DNA. <http://acomp.usf.edu/~pkho/yijing/dnatst.htm>
Marshall, S.J. (Ma Xia). YiJing Dao. <http://www.yijing.btinternet.co.uk/index.htm>
ILLUSTRATIONS:
p. 3
the 8 trigrams, from <http://milan.free.fr/iching/>
hexagram pairs table: from YiJing and DNA. <http://acomp.usf.edu/~pkho/yijing/dnatst.htm>
pp. 4-20 YiJing pictograms: from LiSe Heyboer. YiJing: Book of the Returning Sun.
<http://www.anton-heyboer.org/index.html>
p. 5
Yu Yan's Diagram of the Fire Phases. Fabrizio Pregadio.
<http://helios.unive.it/%7Edsao/pregadio/pictures/firephases.html>
Bagua cube matrix: from: Kho, Pieng-Lam. YiJing Matrices.
< http://acomp.usf.edu/~pkho/yijing/a_yijing.htm>
DNA cube from: Smith, Tony.
YiJing, Genetic Code, Tai Hsuan Ching, and the D4-D5-E6-E7-E8 Vodou Physics Model.
<http://www.innerx.net/personal/tsmith/ichgene6.html>
p. 7
"unravelling DNA": by Maxim D. Frank-Kamenetskii.
from YiJing and DNA. <http://acomp.usf.edu/~pkho/yijing/dnatst.htm>
a circular representation of the YiJing. from Smith, Tony. YiJing, Genetic Code …
http://www.innerx.net/personal/tsmith/ichgene6.html>
p. 17
Chinese Pond Heron: photo by Laurence Poh.
<http://www.angelfire.com/pe2/digiscoping/chinese_pond.htm>
p. 18,19 yellow dragon robe & dragon image: from John P. Painter. Nine Dragon Baguazhang. 2002.
<http://www.ninedragonbaguazhang.com/dragons.htm>
23
OF INTEREST:
http://www.zhouyi.com/
(links page)
http://www.chinapage.com/yijing.html
(YiJing text in Chinese)
http://members.home.nl/hfl/it/iching.htm
(another one of the many on-line oracles,
in English, Dutch, German)
http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/gthursby/taoism/ichingtx.htm
(the classic 1923 translation by Richard
Wilhelm, not used here.)
http://www.pale.org/ching/index.html
(a tabular transliteration of the characters &
hexagrams)
http://www.168fengshui.com/Articles/8_trigrams.htm (the trigrams explained, from the
p.o.v. of Feng Shui practise)
http://www.cancun.com/sipp5/sipp_ctag5.stm
(SIPP 5.0 - apparently a matrix of relationships
defining someone's theory of everything, including
DNA and the YiJing.)
http://www.tomshinsky.com/page801.html
(a fascinating site by artist Stanley Tomshinsky, who
has evidently engaged himself with the subject for
decades, from a creative as well as philosophical
perspective)
<http://www.innerx.net/personal/tsmith/ichgene6.html> (Tony Smith's page is similarly intricate,
apparently written from a mathematician's p.o.v.)
http://www.yijing.btinternet.co.uk/index.htm
S J Marshall's site features some relevant animations
of hexagram sequences that inspired parts of this
project.