Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Edge of the World

“The Edge of the World” tells a true story of a mapping expedition in the second longest cave in Texas.

When her survey group becomes lost inside the cave, the author uses the experience to propel questions of the duplicity of maps and the ambiguities of human perception, she questions if the blank spaces on maps should really be filled in with new discoveries, for perhaps something is being lost in the process...

...."down in the dark, in the black voids of caves, you can truly be the first to set foot in a place...Descending down into a cave is coming into contact with a primal part of your self...You can be caught up in miracles in this twilight zone. It’s easy. Sometimes the light outside penetrates the shadows in shafts, and dust motes float in the silence, flying like fairies . . . or miracles. If you rappel down through the zone you may find yourself suspended with no sensation of moving, and yet feeling strangely that the cave is coming up to meet you...What difference does a map make when you’re lost? Often, not much. It’s like looking up a word when you don’t know how to spell it. A map is just a half repre-sentation of a place, a half truth. It only reveals someone else’s interpretations of the place, not our own...imagine mapping your own bedroom. What would you include? ...What you leave out of a map tells just as much about yourself, and what you value, as what you include.


cave maps, Boston Grotto Photo Gallery, more cave photos via coudal

1 comment:

Princess Haiku said...

Moon Dear,
I enjoy it so when you wax poetic about maps. This is a delightful post and it bemuses me-- This quirk of friendship and opposites. That a directionally impaired person is fascinated by an avant-garde cartographer. I am so into this word "avant-garde" thanks to you and expect it to reoccur regularly for a while in my posts.

Princess Haiku has made friends with an avant-garde ghost named Avy and she lives in the future. Where will she lead this poet?

You haven't been visiting me and I am going to lure you with a MOON post. Could you link me, Moon? I am trying to develop my blog thing and it would please me.

Leaving you to dreams of orange groves with blossoms that belong to the fragrance of an avant-garde future. OH< OH there she goes again.........