SES: I have always believed that many of the parallel themes and motifs in Borges's and Nabokov's work reflect the fact that both grew up in Anglophile families, reading the same tales of doubles and detectives by writers in English[...]
JM: VN once said that he "didn't think in words but in images.", a philosophical positioning abandoned by post-modern theorists, but possibly shared by the two anglophile visionaries. The Dutch-conjuring engraver Escher once stated something similar ( like R.'s phrase in TT) - and mathematitians have been confirming his non-verbal, insights.  
Jerry Friedman: Since no one who actually speaks Spanish has translated the little poem Alexey quoted, I'll give it a shot, and continue on momentum to Jansy's quotation from a review of VNAY. Alexey wrote: De palabra/ Nace razón/ De luz el son. Looks to me more like, "From word, reason is born.  From light, sound. From JM's quotation: [...]Nabokov warns the friend that he is perfectly useless in regard to managing individual (?) heating systems [...] Boyd considers the text of the novel's epilogue[...] The reader should notice the three lines (authorship, heating, circle of familiar gratitude) that flow together and fertilize each other in the image, as well as the way that Boyd uses the text to point out the way imagination fertilizes contact with an object to create an image.' My choices with the wrong nuance (should "encouraging" be "inspiring"?)...
JM: I don't have to follow VN's strictures on translation ( almost like Schopenhauer's) -  so I particularly enjoyed the poetry of Alexey's rendering. "Fiat Lux" results from "in the beginning was the word" and when "from light sound is born"... it's because there's a split of phenomenic "lightning and thunder."
Did VN and Borges "see The Light"?  Are their words, acts? Signifiers?
JF's translation of the Spanish seems to be faithful enough: good for you Jerry!.  

Stan K-B observed in-off [ in relation to "what does "mollittude" mean in VN 's sentence "the luxury and mollitude of my first Villa Venus"] - "that ALL four nouns are consistent with how English words are (and have been for centuries) formed from agglutinated roots[...]We can never answer for sure the general question "What does this word mean?" We can list possible meanings [...] there are contextual clues. It's a "quality" or "essence" or "state"[...]based on the rich root "moll-" (found in most Indo-European languages via the Proto-IE mil/mel/mol [to grind, whence milling flour etc]. So it's the state or quality associated with or encouraging being soft/gentle/complying/coaxing ..."  SK-B disagrees concerning VN's inclusion of luxury ( it "has long lost its original Latin cognates. Had VN intended the Roman lascivious/sybaritic, he had many ways of saying so.)
JM: Every reader has the choice of "possible meanings" but sensitivity to sound and light of words, plus the context in the sentence, may add to to its enjoyment. For me, mollittude is a spiky word whereas mollittious is round and, perhaps, the "m" color is similar to the one VN's alphabet. Nobody can know, to interpret something is to appropriate it for oneself (but it often remains as a culturally-enforced secret).
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