Encoded documents and images are derived from manuscripts in the Papers of Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven in Special Collections at the University of Maryland, College Park, Libraries. In addition, individual pages or leaves of manuscripts are identified by the corresponding reel and frame numbers of the microfilm edition of the Freytag-Lorinhoven Papers.
The one printed version of Xray appeared in transition 7 (October 1927): 135.
Published by Tanya Clement.Office of Digital Collections and Research (DCR), University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742
Baroness Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven's poetry is printed here with the support of the University of Maryland Libraries. Permission to reproduce images of Freytag-Loringhoven's manuscripts has also been generously granted by the libraries.
This poem and manuscript drafts are available from this site for demonstration purposes only. Though the intellectual property of Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven is in the public domain, all annotations and editorial commentary are copyrighted. They may not be reproduced without explicit permission from the copyright holder. For copyright information, please contact Tanya Clement.
DTD constructed from TEI P5 poetry base with tagsets for linking, figures, analysis, transcr, textcrit.
Line numbers have been included to reflect the numbering across all versions. Thus, some line numbers are missing on versions which do not include all lines within the text.
The poem “Xray" was published in transition (October 1927: 134-135). There are ten extant versions (including the published text). Across the versions there are some phrases that remain more or less the same, some that change course and change back, and still others that evolve quite dramatically in a perceptive, linear fashion.
In “Psychoanalytic Reading and the Avant-texte” Jean Bellemin-Noël sites “chance” as the salient element within the textual event that mollifies the need to reproduce temporality in the genetic edition. If we paraphrase his words, it is enough to engage temporal uncertainty and the element of chance by engaging space. He writes, "we absolutely must substitute spatial metaphors for temporal images to avoid reintroducing the idea of teleology" (Bellemin-Noël in Genetic Criticism. Ed. Jed Deppman, Daniel Ferrer, and Michael Groden. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004: 31). For instance, in version three of “Xray,” readings (“Suns [sic] radioinfused soil,” “Radio’s soil secret,” “Radio’s sun message,” and “Radio’s sunimpregnated soil”) may be understood as alternative readings for the same point in a line of text because of their spatial arrangement on the manuscript page, all radiating around the word “soil.” In addition, since the text appears between the second and third line of text, it appears that the word cluster is a kind of brainstorming cluster that may or may not have helped the writer develop the phrase “Dumb radiopenetrated soil” that appears, for the first time in any version, on the line beneath the cluster.
The difference between the text and the image and the dialogic these differences engage generates the element of temporal uncertainty that Bellemin-Noël requires. These deformations open a space for conversation (and play) between the digital surrogates at work (the images and the encoded texts) which, in turn, produces an environment, based on the underlying TEI encoding, that facilitates textual performance.