Pop Culture
Feb 10, 2015, 09:50AM

You Find Vernacular

A New York Times interview with photographer Josef Koudelka vs. a Not Enough Night interview with author Gary Snyder.

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Josef Koudelka: Your home is the place where you leave from and in a period of crisis you must formulate a way to escape.

Gary Snyder: I shouldn't have had anybody teach me that. It seems obvious.

Koudelka: I think that’s the conflict. It goes even to the language.

Snyder: Absolutely. You find vernacular. You find great vivid vernacular and colloquia maybe, but you don't find anything sloppy.

Koudelka: At the same time, I like to be open enough to forget it.

Snyder: What I practice is availability. I always think, gee, maybe I should live longer.

Koudelka: I might be dead myself by now.


Snyder: Do you have a tool kit that has several types of pliers, Phillips screwdrivers, and slotted screwdrivers?

Koudelka: That’s for other people to say. (Laughs) I don’t believe what people say.


Snyder: Apparently, jotting a few notes down, but not much. It’s very different now. It segues too swiftly. I have to say that all the time.

Koudelka: With landscapes you are waiting all the time. It’s much more relaxing.

Snyder: I notice that with squirrels and with my dog.


Koudelka: Beauty is very relative and it depends on each person and the beauty is everywhere and the beauty is even in the tragedy. I like airplanes and I am very emotional, but some of these war planes are pretty, beautiful, yet they are so terrible.  

Snyder: How to pack a backpack, how to lay down on the ground and sleep under a tree. How to climb. How to get along in certain situations. I mean, you would become exhausted. It’s not journalism. But that is still not an answer.

Koudelka: Are you an anarchist?

Snyder: Everybody lives in a house, okay?


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