Imperial by William Vollmann

It may well be that since this southeast corner of California is so peculiar, enigmatic, sad, beautiful and perfect as it stands, delineation of any sort should be forgone in favor of the recording of “pure” perceptions, for instance by means of a camera alone; or, failing that, by reliance upon word-pictures: a cityscape of withered palms, white tiles, glaring parking lots, and portico-shaded loungers who watch the boxcars groan by; a cropscape of a rich green basil field, whose fragrance rises up as massively resonant as an organ-chord.

pg. 41


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