Streetlights

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Metaphors bearing allegories of light and vision are as ubiquitous as the countless lamposts that line our city streets.

 

The substance of light and the faculty of vision are cloaked in a timeworn patina of semantic investments and yet they pervade language with such transparency that not unlike the ordinary streetlight, they manage to blend into the familiar haze of the commonplace.

 

When not synonymous to knowledge itself, the lofty metaphors of light inform such universal ideals as spiritual emancipation and the triumph of reason. They generally ensure and entrench the legacy of a metaphysics of presence.

 

But on the other side of its half-life of service, the streetlight stands forlorn in broad daylight, a vacant signifier with a faltering murmur, a presence that lapses in destitution and loss.

 

In functional recess and more necessitous of the substance it is built to dispense, it points at the horizon of the intelligible as it recounts the ninety-nine flavors of absence.