scenario 4: the problem of everyone else
". . . we know our neighbor exists because he's outside. . . ." -Italo Calvino, "Blood, Sea" (t-zero) I. Town and Country "It goes without saying that there can be no democracy, or even an ongoing project of a democratic society, without autonomous individuals capable of critically and imaginatively participating in this project." -David Wallace, "In Search of a Democratic Aesthetic" Now, all our weak, sinful, rebellious subjects, let us gather to talk, of doing the work: civ/n not out of nostalgia for a supra-temporal community, but a need "to overcome one's estrangement from which one is most familiar" to correct the national body fixed/ hetero- let us stop pulling stone knuckles from the earth to meditate upon southern money like rumors of rain the geography of apocalypse: roadblocks & barricades the trembling poplar w/silver leaf torment of metal / scream of saws the darkness upon the plain. Geniuses: a dime / dozen elsewhere. Here an inflationary regime, our inhabitants include: rig hands in doghouses whole villages from Cape Breton one who doesn't know what a suntan is the alcoholic driver & the cat skinner recent parolées from federal institutions economic migrants from dying prairie towns bars full of sad, promiscuous & angry souls. They're often really fat & their clothes too tight. So whatever happened to distributing people intelligently? Must we resign ourselves, once & for all, to that helpless, destined feeling? Accept survival as its own reward secrete an establishment around ourself, assume a sidestreet vegetative excrescence alongside our sceptical neighbors their faces stubbled w/frost long-johns on clothesline slanted slab-hard in wind ragged edges of crop pleating into riverbank. A gathering of the dispossessed & displaced arm muscles unencumbered & armpit hair fully ventilated taking every opportunity to antagonize the boar half-starving from winter's sleep. How many of us seek a country where nobody else lives? Manifeste cannibale dada a state of intoxication sanctions all irregularities catastrophic emissions cover the velvet rind of branches w/an exuberant verdure. Among the indoors people, facing frosted windows populations assembled for no compelling reason the harshness of pioneer life: immense cold, poverty, no electricity holds no romance living in Bad Faith people live quietly underneath flight patterns playing w/a rifle as if it's a woman fucking one's subject while overhead satellites of reporting companies locate facilities plumes of toxic material: matter out of place death as short-term effect of exposure. Is there no place free from (this) presence? Living together must allow for repetition tolerance of those who come to work planning only to stay a year or two just long enough to put a stake together pad a résumé. It is all a symptom of plethora; here we may skip stages in our bildung get whatever is needed watch wild berries swell in the pagan sun herons feed in watery meadows. And who could forget our summer companions, gnats & mosquitoes? Yes, here is only an interval, even if enlivened w/vast herds of elk & buffalo numerous examples of the Abandoned Farmhouse genre all available for the cost of distraction, psychological & otherwise the old jail across the river where industrial culture went to dream address among brooding pines its moodiness & other spiritual infections contagion always a risk, its capacity for punitive retaliation written in accord w/a canon of the self-forbidding internalized as commodification of social agency: to be finished would, indeed, be a relief. But there is to be no distraction from this incessant chatter political rumblings from the south so we gather accessories to show how hard we work & how we are always working our willingness to endure / this dreadful freedom the barren reaches. This is what happens, as the silver fangs of the mighty axe destroy this magnificent theatre of nature the strippers clean up & streets go unpaved the vigilance & severity of the husband his affirmation of self, & desire to complete the truncated precursor is humiliating & tedious whereas a wife's normal contribution the equation of virtue & masochism an unmanipulated sorrow clashes w/his proneness to side w/beauty. The result, a certain lack of care: ugliness, filth, squalor, relationships subject to sudden & / or violent ends, the job offer from afar, the call home. In the spring giant frost heaves & potholes erupt. The eye's revenge: those blue depths, moon forsaken thick hair of poplar & spruce braided across sky save where the birches grew deeper, more complex formations. Dead things were all about me and the year was dead. II. L'escalade non anesthésée Invoking realms of the unreal that trance of wonder, that doth run through nature everywhere, even as we cross the meatloaf line: observe now the decorative function of trees & animals motors discharging in response to anxiety graffitti tags on dirty brick walls & buff old urban ayahuasqueros mixing systems, producing fresh desires. From the north, death, a fog comes down to put forward the unpresentable in presentation flaunting raw data, the many deaths we had delivered. "This was once a city" proclaimeth Geo. Stanley to those assembled in the parking lot "this plastic rose" now inscribed in our species-being a moment in the history of capital a dumping ground for scum a vanguard machine, dragging humanity after it hungry ghosts everywhere: chaosophy & the inevitability of annoyance & risk a focus for all problems of poetics. Those annoying others, who also inhabit these places take, for instance, contestant #2 a remedial semiotics student he fits the right profile! suckers appear on his head; he studies the illusion of an enduring understanding & the American bourgeoisie interlude how, despite such an extensive array of competence building measures some people get headache. Jamie Reed evokes "the labor aristocracy" (big-headroom people tend to be predators, ingesting & expelling identifications) a grievous stream of analysis terminable & interminable a range of vision beyond that of ordinary people . . . always being found innocent for ridiculous reasons." Drinking w/poets & thinking ab't nothing much of the time this be the position of the late-modern poet-self, vis-a-vis the brown meat & its insatiable insistence on chasing primal ecstasy. While the common-sense discourses of the soul would indicate such time as is better spent planning & producing customized learning-objects for our One Big College.
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