By Theresa Duncan.
“My silence was the silence of ten men.” –David Berman
I don’t really think about Pynchon’s invisibility, because somewhere in the back of my mind I know that like the Cottingsley Fairies he hides from THEM but reveals himself to US. So he’s always there, you know, the game of fort/da forever over, because you can’t lose what you never had. Pynchon’s invisibility is so much more vivid, isn’t it? Than seeing some warmed-over wonder read at the 92nd Street Y and you have to go “that’s his voice?” matching it with the better one that comes like wind out of the great library of the uncollected unconscious to invisibly light up every book you’ve ever read. And then–God–listen to the sycophants in the audience titter at even the unfunny ones in order to prove that they are closer to the great man’s mind and humor and vision.
Pynchon’s disappearance then, is nearly as great an act of generosity as the wonder-books he himself writes. Like the Hebrew moment of Tsim Tsum where God first withdrew from the universe in order to make room for his creation the universe, Pynchon’s withdrawal means that we get that much more mental real estate. You know that feeling? You wait and wait for a book like this, buy it, and when you get around to opening it, you just start expanding…There’s not even any photos of Pynchon except that silly sailor one. Invisibility. Perhaps it’s a vain celebrity peccadillo, but to me it works as an act of psychoanalytic silence, where what I really pay for is to have the great man with his mighty mind listen, not talk.
The Elegant Variation: Pynchon Publishes? Somebody Pinch Me [Via Book Inq]