The principle concept behind this poetic project involves capturing full moonlight in an array of mirrors and reflecting it onto a stage for a nighttime performance. Conceived by Humbert Camerlo but never fully executed by engineers Peter Rice and then Nicolas Prouve, this project requires an amphitheatrical site, engaging the history of performance as well as a low-tech solution for a high-tech problem. Further proof engineers can be just as creative as architects, given the correlation of interest, challenge and budget.
Trix and Robert Haussmann, Lehrstueck, 1978
(For other impulse let it pass) was driven,
To seek for sympathy, because I saw
In you a mirror of my youthful self.
— William Wordsworth, The Borderers, 1795-7
When love-lorn hours had left me less a child,
I sat contemplating the figures wild
Of o’er-head clouds melting the mirror through.
— John Keats, Endymion, 1818
Beaming with mildest radiance on my heart
To purify its purity, e’er bend
To soothe its vice or consecrate its fears?
Never, thou second Self! Is confidence
So vain in virtue that I learn to doubt
The mirror even of Truth?
— Percy Bysshe Shelley, To Harriet, c. 1811
River, that rollest by the ancient walls,
Where dwells the lady of my love, when she
Walks by thy brink, and there perchance recalls
A faint and fleeting memory of me;
What if thy deep and ample stream should be
A mirror of my heart, where she may read
The thousand thoughts I now betray to thee,
Wild as thy wave, and headlong as thy speed!
What do I say -a mirror of my heart?
Are not thy waters sweeping, dark, and strong?
Such as my feelings were and are, thou art;
And such as thou art were my passions long.
Time may have somewhat tamed them, -not for ever;
Thou overflow’st thy banks, and not for aye
The bosom overboils, congenial river!
Thy floods subside, and mine have sunk away.
But left long wrecks behind, and now again,
Born in our old unchanged career, we move;
Thou tendest wildly onwards to the main,
And I -to loving one I should not love.
The current I behold will sweep beneath
Her native walls and murmur at her feet;
Her eyes will look on thee, when she shall breathe
The twilight air, unharmed by summer’s heat.
She will look on thee, -I have looked on thee,
Full of that thought; and, from that moment, ne’er
Thy waters could I dream of, name, or see,
Without the inseparable sigh for her!
Her bright eyes will be imaged in thy stream, -
Yes! they will meet the wave I gaze on now:
Mine cannot witness, even in a dream,
That happy wave repass me in its flow!
The wave that bears my tears returns no more:
Will she return by whom that wave shall sweep?
Both tread thy banks, both wander on thy shore,
I by thy source, she by the dark-blue deep.
But that which keepeth us apart is not
Distance, nor depth of wave, nor space of earth,
But the distraction of a various lot,
As various as the climates of our birth.
A stranger loves the lady of the land,
Born far beyond the mountains, but his blood
Is all meridian, as if never fanned
By the black wind that chills the polar flood.
My blood is all meridian; were it not,
I had not left my clime, nor should I be,
In spite of tortures, ne’er to be forgot,
A slave again of love, -at least of thee.
'Tis vain to struggle -let me perish young -
Live as I lived, and love as I have loved;
To dust if I return, from dust I sprung,
And then, at least, my heart can ne’er be moved.
— Lord Byron, Stanzas to the Po, 1824
In mad love-yearning by the vacant brook.
Till sickly thoughts bewitch thine eyes, and thou
Behold’st her shadow still abiding there,
The Naiad of the Mirror!
— Istvan Orosz, “On Drawing,” c. 2000
— Walter Cronkite, “On Journalism,” c. 1980 (via mirror)
— Pliny the Elder, Natural History, c. 79 CE