First activity welcomed at Les Treilles, this session was experimental, the choice of the residents not having been voluntarily guided by any particular theme. The attempt was modest, bringing together three men and two women-a French philosopher, an American poet, a British historian of mathematics, and two American specialists in nineteenth-century French literature. The session proved that the place and the length of the stay made possible to establish a very favorable climate for personal work and to create between men and women of different nationalities and formations a friendship and dialogue going well beyond of intellectual courtesy.
This session was very encouraging and helped to clarify in what spirit the Foundation wished to act.
Participants, Institution and research area :
Lois Cooper (Princeton University – French Literature -Victor Hugo)
David Fowler (University of Warwick – Ancient Mathematics)
Diane Martin (Princeton University – French Literature -Victor Hugo-)
Jean Petitot (Centre d’Analyse et de Mathématiques sociales, Paris – Mathematics and Linguistic)
Richard Reid (Princeton University – Modern Poetry)
Following this session, Richard Reid wrote this poem published in the first Analects of the Fondation des Treilles :
as the pines’ high castenets
shake their brightening seed,
it is day
and the acorn’s jacketed
limbs are danced from oak
to oak. As a world kills
all dumb time
the silent leavings and love’s most expensive breath
expose the loud rubble of a rumor only.
Mend the ultimate phalanx of stone
that makes place for an olive grove
and, here, for cypresses to negotiate with wind.
The wanting of a human band is
this measure of a hill.
And a snail has gathered an elaborated shell
to a small infinity,
impermanent ear to the earth,
like terraces under the sun, these walls of quiet and rock.
Where the new olives drop
in the absence of her silent, exploded flower
in the near shadow of gone, of folded stars,
the discontinuous leaves
turn quick and whispering an evening secret
of still uncollected