Postamble, For an Invisible Sangha
Published October 2021
About the book
Postamble For an Invisible Sangha follows the classical sinfonia format of three movements in fast / slow / fast tempo. The three sections of the book present gradually unfolding linguistic progressions and perceptible processes. The content for section one is rooted in spiritual literature, including the use of source texts drawn from the scriptures of various faith perspectives, as well as from incantations and chants. The second part lists elements, chemicals and geological minerals found in pigment used by the Swiss painter Paul Klee, along with the titles of some of Klee’s works. Klee’s highly evocative, late romantic and symbolist language comes into close contact with terms drawn from the discourse of science. The third and final piece begins with an epigraph from the 13th and 14th Century German mystic Meister Eckhart: “Could you completely forget yourself even for an instant, you would be given everything.” Postamble’s three-part format resonates further with minimalist music, as the heavy repetition of similar syllable counts produces a steady-state pace while the diction sets up a relatively harmonic tone.
About the author
Peter Jaeger is a Canadian writer based in Bristol and London, England. He is the author of twelve books, including works of poetry, conceptual writing, and hybrid creative-critical research. Publications include A Field Guide to Lost Things (2015) and Midamble (2018), both from if p then q. Jaeger is Professor of Poetics at the University of Roehampton.
Postamble’s three sections resemble the gently unfolding modulations of a piece of music by Steve Reich. The further one reads these generous and profoundly human pieces, the more one appreciates the (understated) genius of the writing, the concept, and—indeed—the language itself. This book is a triumph! – Tim Atkins
Postamble for an Invisible Sangha is a three-part minimalistic poem that can be read both as a score and as a discourse on the science of acoustics. Each line is presented as a harmonic interval among long, empty spaces, and the anaphoric “in” that controls the tempo also promotes the formation of mathematical loops which could go on for ever.
– Ghazal Mosadeq
In Postamble, Peter Jaeger pens kinship ken of multispecies encounters, geomorphologic logics, and spirited thinking-withs. His is a poetry of minimalist immersion. We are situated in. We give over to the lessons of any moment, of all detail. Jaeger steps us through his dharma dance with a care so needed in this contemporary point of collective climate trauma. – angela rawlings