This book, by Viola Sachs, should be back in print. It would sell. I keep trying to find an o.p. copy.

The game of creation: The primeval unlettered language of Moby Dick, or, The whale. (Published in Paris in 1982.)

As my faithful true-blue blabbophiles know, I'm struggling to get out of a writing block. Hope I'm not jinxing myself by saying that mathematics might help.

I'm going back to an approach I used in the long poems, only in a somewhat different order of steps.

It's curious how math & geometry infiltrated my writing, since I was never big on it in school.

When you have a set of themes or images or ideas which seem to be hanging around, waiting to be picked up... when you want to synthesize some material... well, sometimes there are geometrical aids-to-composition.

There's a poetry in numbers, & vice versa.

Formal harmonic properties are found in the way different numerical quantities interact. Thus, if you're interested in "part is the sum of its whole" (or vice versa) phenomena, math can help. There are curious & fascinating symmetries involved, when small quantities are mirrored or analogous to quantities on different orders of scale.

So say you have a theme or some subject-matter you want to interweave with something else, which may not appear immediately relevant : you can find ways to echo & balance or contrast things, geometrically.

Add to this the symbolic qualities which are or can be invested in numbers, and you're really getting somewhere. Because you can apply both your own symbolic values to particular numbers, and you can draw on traditional or other applications : you can combine them. Soon your art work will start to resonate with its own obscure & secret interconnections.

& this is all in addition to the rhythmic aspect (metrics).

Painters & architects & musicians, of course, have been doing this for a long time.

Right now I'm messing around with the mysterious number which pervades Finnegans Wake : 1132.

So why am I getting back to this? It's not just that math & geometry can help a writer organize material. Numbers, shape & symmetry can lead you along. The blank space can help you find what you're looking for, even before you knew you were looking.

As I've mentioned before, Alastair Fowler wrote a series of books on this subject, as exemplified in Renaissance poetry.

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