Richard Powers – Orfeo

January 6, 2015

Lady Fancifull

Music of the spheres; music in the genes

OrfeoThe subject matter of Richard Powers tellingly titled ‘Orfeo’ is immense – immortality and transcendence, the desire to make sense and purpose of it all, and what remains always outside our ability to grasp its intangibility, but is always on the edge of our yearning reach.

Orpheus in classical mythology is a poet and musician of such power that all of the natural world is charmed by his music. In one version, he is the son of Apollo. He descends to the world of the dead to bring back his wife Eurydice, a task which ultimately fails as he disobeys the instruction to not look back.

Corot - Orpheus leading Eurydice from the Underworld Wiki Commons Corot – Orpheus leading Eurydice from the Underworld Wiki Commons

The central character of Powers’ book, Peter Els, though initially trained as a chemist, with a particular interest in its metaphysics, the secret at the heart…

View original post 537 more words