The Secret Word

Here is a brief summary of the recent weekly Section for Literary Arts & Humanities meeting of the local group in Fair Oaks, CA. This meeting occurred on May 16, 2020 via Zoom.

I’ll continue to send out these summaries, but the idea came up in discussion last night that maybe other members of the group might want to write something — reflection, essay, poem, story, artwork, music, video . . . ? — something that gives expression to your experience of studying Novalis during this time of Covid-19. Working with Novalis, in my experience, can bring inspiration for renewal and creativity. How is it for you?

Meeting Summary

We spent the evening yesterday in close and lively discussion of the novel Heinrich von Ofterdingen and in review of the materials presented over the past seven weeks. This review included materials from the last two presentations for the Faust Branch. Part Three of the Branch presentation will occur this Wednesday.

We agreed to continue to read the novel to conclusion, and we looked at Chapter Six — in particular the use and meaning of the word “poet” in that chapter.

Here is the opening and closing verse for the evening, along with words from Chapter Six that resonate with the verse. (See link at end of email for another translation of this verse.)

Here is a link to the incomplete second part of the novel including Tieck’s notes.

“Where are we going?”
“Always toward home.”
— Novalis

Written by Bruce Donehower
May 16, 2020