A wooden tongue

The same Noh mask at three inclinations.

From Ian Buruma’s review of the new William Vollman book in the latest NYRB:

If even our deepest desires are no more than delusions, then the objects of our desires are forever beyond our reach. But Vollmann, like most of us, though moved by the performance of Noh, is not ready for Buddhist renunciation. This, he writes, “is not what I wish to believe. I want to kiss the mask, and when I put my lips against its wooden emptiness, I want to feel a woman’s tongue in my mouth.”

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