What they are

The Sun (New York), March 8, 1902, page 2:


In 1902, the bare glimpse manifested itself to the prince amid what the text calls painful glare. What you see of it in this remnant artifact is, eye by eye,

B. W. Kilburn Company, “Prince Henry arriving at West Point.” Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2017651979/

and then, after integration,

Prince Henry anaglyph
Requires red-and-blue stereo viewer. Images post-processed in Photoshop and Z-Anaglyph.

In 1902 you might not have been able to see the prince’s face in the glare, or hear his name as it sank into muffling snow. Off camera, however, there does remain a record in words of the phenomena. It has its own black and white, it names itself Sun, and in the nature of records it seems to promise records’ immortality.

But on March 8, 1902, also in the nature of records, everything under Sun was mortal.

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Page 1

There was no cure for the passing away of 1902, either. In 1902 a remedy proposed by page 2 of the record was to double over, look down and in, and attend to intestinal digestion, as if there you could hear Henry David Thoreau crying as he was cleft by the scimitar of a fact, “This is, and no mistake.” But that cry didn’t reach the princes on page 1.

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Page 2

But what you seem to have learned through your viewer, you good liver, is that even when words have been worn away by heat, moisture or time, something else, something external to words, may still remain knowable. Its images of snow and mountain and river will remain in the eye for a time only, but for that time what they are will be black and white.