new zealand electronic poetry centre

 

Len Lye


online works


DON"T SAY IT

(A letter Lye wrote to Eric Kennington in 1928, while he was making the animated film ĎTusalavaí.)

 

Lo de do Eric, Iím up to where Debil-debil is just going to lick Mr. Bean-in-the-Pod with 
a blunt three-pronged tongue and cover him with spit and eat him up. That means about 
another 500 drawings, then first sectionís completed. A second a day and why not? It 
certainly moves and doesnít get hung up on a wall to make you look. It moves on and off 
the screen and you arenít forced to see it if you donít want to. Iím through with talking 
about art: after all the fuss and when the art critics have stopped making history thereís 
nothing left but a few designs by Aus., Af., Am., or Ocean Is. Aboriginals, designs 
complete in themselves, unattached to history or sentiment; done because they were 
feeling good and not goofy. They remain what they are, a record of well-being, 
unspiritual. Donít say it. The welterweight mass of London still means nothing. About 
four people know the real chaos and are shining up the word reciprocation; if not the four 
neednít do any shining because theyíve got eyes. Apart from all that around here itís easy 
when it comes to fun. Itís easy jazz and ha-ha Sundays: give us that kind of not too far 
away from work, separate from the mournings after, from any kind of fukkups 
following late among the housetops and drinkups, none of that loose juice for us Ė the difference of 
being awake for work, sleeping a break to pull the chain for no headaches and no one 
needs to be reminded weíve got the most to get nearer to turning our toes up to prove it.

 

© Len Lye


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Last updated 22 August, 2001