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jackrabbit mind, dashing –
here thick grass of nothingness
there a frenzied masturbation –
to and fro, quick left, jab right,
the daydreams, grief,
and absence fore and aft.
It’s a wonder, this pondering
of its bearings, moorings,
bodies baring everywhere
and not a drop to think.
What drives desire?
Seems pushed and pulled
and craven. Erotically
erratic, playing at its gloom
“it’s nothing,” says the mouth,
always caught between
the breathing and the axons
blood swelling pounding through.
The feral hind leaps out,
ruminate sparkle, devious
flux of concept, fact, or notion,
swimming in emotion,
The “world,” as it were, as it ‘is’ (also, reduced, in addition) “for us.”
How it comes to be as we are – briefly. Almost incalculably miniscule. Almost ‘happenstance.’
“Our” world, as it were: all we cannot know, that we are part in, of, with.
One wonders what “world” can possibly mean.
Every meaning apparently nothing outside of this microscopic sliver of kind… EVERYthing and more, “for us.” Some ‘infinity’ or ‘void;’ ‘abyss’ or ‘chaotic complexity’ – a reference to every-thing (or not) that so far surpasses us, outstrips us, beyonds us. Some so-called…”world.”
One could turn toward all that, could ‘be-itself,’ bi-pedally, shrimpishly, speck-o-dust uprightedly, with/in ‘it’…and have a dwarfed, almost indiscernible ‘experience.’ Or “one” (were such a thing possible) could de-cide, di-vide, con-sider (?) – place oneself ‘over against’ or ‘in contrast’ (contra-di-stinction) to all that: otherness, ‘world,’ ‘uknown/unknowable,’ ‘beyond,’ ‘out-side,’ infinite… and de-term-in.
Squash it down to ‘one’s own scale, name it / call it / sign it, and ‘fit’ it in. i.e. cut it small enough to be comprehensible, digestible, sensible (according-to-one’s-own) and pre-tend, fore-tell, image-in, sign-i-fy it ACCORDING TO… ‘one,’ ‘us,’ ‘me’ (such as math, logic, language, communicable signs, etc – in-(ter)ventions on/of our own terms).
Human knowledge, inquiry, disciplines, creations, theories, etc. are EXACTLY (and perhaps ONLY, one surmises) THAT: at the scale of the human. ‘One’ is prone to automatically grant every ‘other’ (plant, material, organism, structure, system, etc) the ‘same’ ‘world’ – as Wittgenstein indicated: indecipherable, untranslatable or communicable between kinds, but most probable, no? – Umwelts – worlds upon worlds within worlds outside worlds… we (‘ones’) can have no share, understanding, con(with)cept, com(with)munication of…
To each its scale of experiencing, and all scales together…
Given the human (so-self-called) scale, this seems pertinently and poignantly most evident…
…why would we chafe against our limits… or (perhaps) every scale always is – no ‘one’ could know this… ones (and many ones) are only ones – more and less than their own possible perspectives… in- and out-looks OF. Scale. (Perhaps).
Obviously, com(with)posing in your/our language… whatever I dream is representative of my scale… i.e. is only a capacity of ‘one’(kind) … of many.
Pleasurably so… or why not?
Dreaming beyond scale (or, inventing scale and its beyond – in the de-term-in-ing) demonstrates itself as a capacity… (e.g. mythology, science, religion, fiction/fantasy, psycho-anything, spirituality, philosophy, history, and so forth) … all imagined efforts beyond-scale, that, in occurring demonstrate the possibilities/limitations of human scale…
What ‘beyond’ could ‘one’ see, think, feel, etc., that is not a demonstration of limited and actual capacity of ‘one-scale’-to-experience?
So ‘one’ has a-, con-, etc. scales… all part of one’s scale (abilities, capacities, possibilities, options, kind). Against, with, creative, reductive, but ALL and ANY activities of one kind (so-self-called ‘human’) show its locked and limited capacity. One never goes beyond.
To ‘work limits,’ and boundaries are clearly elements of our ‘limits’ and ‘boundaries’ of the scope and scale of the ‘human.’
“Gods,” cosmologies, dreams, histories, theorizing, etc., all contained within the ‘bounds’ or capacities of the ‘kind-of-thing-‘One’-is. Perhaps.
It is the ‘perhaps’ that haunts us. [but what could ‘haunt’ indicate but another human capacity – perhaps a ‘felt capacity’ of bursting or extending our capacities?]
Witchcraft. Art. Technology. Religion. Theoretical and experimental anything. Logos. Arche. Tohu. Bohu. Beginning. Universe (must needs always shrink to one’s own scale… in order to uni-anything… ‘multiverse’ simple exponents of capacities for in our microscopic self-experienced sphere… we named ‘infinity’ – is there no exponent we can’t add – within our tiny range of potential?).
One’s own anthropology.
Logically [though I excessively distrust that program of human-ing] – what con-cept, i-dea, imagine-ing, or object-ivity is not necessarily always paramatered by the human ex-periential capacities?
The bounds may be elastic or no – there would be no way for a kind to know – being all-ways the ‘one’ experiencing.
[from a crumpled writing found under a car seat among additional trash, transposed to typing as a record of a mind’s mayhem and mistakes]
“Deliver me, prays the haunted man. Therefore…”
Gunnar Olsson, Abysmal
I am Dostoevsky and I am Beckett. I am Hegel and Heidegger and Holderlin. I am Kafka.
I am not good enough for any of you. I do not merit your time nor your attention, affection, sensibilities, your human talents, or your care… no conceivable reason to mention “love.”
But I love you. I am the one who loves you. The one who writes. Who writes these words. The haunted one, the Reader, the Librarian; the Lover, Scholar, I am me. I love you. I am haunted. Words runnel through me, and with them thoughts, and with them feelings, and with them meanings, which means…nothing. No matter, no space, no time.
The “haunted man” is a passage, a passing, a ‘type.’ Of no import, little reality, barely occurrence.
I am Blanchot, am Homer, am divine Scriptures, and Shakespeare. Simply, small-ly, in my own way, this very general way, I am what humans do with language. For one another, with one another, to one another, as.
Yards and houses, flesh and voices, signs and symbols, marks and sounds, music and rhythyms and gestures, as attempts to conjoin – join and connect – survive, discover, endure, be, become, in-volve… With no idea. Or ideas that continually prove false and faulty. Elaborate records of revision, perhaps better inscribed as simple songs of effort. Urges only TO BE, and that, TO BE CONNECTED.
But what do I know? I’m Pythagoras, call me Ishmael or Ahab, Everyman or Whatever. I’m out-dated. Assign me a number. I don’t really care. I really care. I am here, and I, (at least) re-present, or present again, or presence, a sort of being. Such as it is… with no “REAL” way to evaluate, estimate, “tell,” or “express.”
Satan, then, Jesus, Joyce, Proust, Alexander. No matter, no space, no time, only IS.
A “tradition” (as it were, in our own words). We. Its + That + This. US. Humans strangely (apparently) in environments. These ways of thinking, of being, of behaving and operating, of supposedly surviving (but with what evidence? WHO or WHAT might know?).
How might elements arranged thus & so, survive? I am Nebuchadnezzar, Mohammed, Hammurabi and Ishtar. I am ab-original.
I am Nothing. Everything. No one. Me.
Each press of the pen: “Hello – ‘here’”
As simply as I can construct it (all of it, any of “it”) it goes something like this: accidents occur, accidents are weird, and accidents give way.
I, like all other(s), an accidental novel. Occasional and Whatever.
WHAT HAPPENS TO BE… at any given point-of-measurement (i.e. as far as we have a capacity to render, sunder, and effect – “Reality” (for us)). Some quirky, unlikely, ridiculous, painstaking, odds-massively-against, and over-dramatic assessment of a certain sort of being-in, being-with, co-occurrence, happen-stance, we fabricate “human.”
TO BE SOMETHING
(organism, constituent, element, participant, activity)
In many other words (for the sake or ability of ‘them,’ ‘it,’ ‘all’) I may as well be. Be Hallie or Ollie or Aidan or Rhesus. Chief Joseph or Samson or Ghandi or Jordan. Be you or Sara or Maya or Jimmy John.
“no matter. Try again. Fail again…” no matter.
THIS TOO SHALL PASS.
“the venom of the serpents were within him”
Gunnar Olsson, Abysmal
HOW SHOULD I KNOW?
And so what if I were Bernhard or Bach, Napoleon, Attila, Montaigne or Dorothy Parker? If I had the ammunition or energy (and weaponry?) – the rhetoric, the nerve, or the madness. L. Sterne, Nagarjuna, Hafiz, JL Borges?
“No matter. Try again. Fail again…”
Titian, Beethoven, Plato/Socrates, Palestrina. Michelangelo, V. van Gogh, and Chuang Tzu. You.
“No matter. Try again. Fail again.”
The want for a story. For a ‘reason’ to be. A far place, an illusion, the stomach knows its illegitimacy, its fantasy, irreality…yet the brain (mind?) dying toward, for, craving, starving after it.
A thread in a narrative…a plotline…a characterization – some momentary identity. To be witnessed, accounted-for, counted, taken note of, recognized. The mad dream of anOther aware of me, acknowledging my presence, sidling out of my way. “Made way”…I exist.
The madness of atoms. Nonsensical. Not “to be” – a sort of fact as it goes – but “to be in awareness” – and not only, but much more – “to be in An-Other’s awareness!” Too much! Pure delusion.
We infect alt-awareness only via disturbance and/or unavoidability – interruptions, intrusions, sign or accident/event – a scream, a tragedy, an obstacle. Interference. No one selects for intrusion…it is managed and dealth with, endured or survived. We (humans) don’t “mean to,” don’t “seek out” inconvenience. (Or maybe we do?). But no matter. Not our ‘purpose,’ ‘intent.’ Not our ‘drive’ (to survive).
Others become aware of “me” when (and ONLY when?) I get in their way. “Intrude.” Otherwise – sans dependence, accident, harm, or some assumed respons-ability (‘obligation’) – I find it hard to imagine drawing the care of attention of an/other.
We spread too thin. Period. Once we engage/respond/encounter/experience, it is blatantly evident: WE ARE NOT ENOUGH. Perhaps nothing is. Perhaps learning, relating, experiencing, engaging, life…NOTHING is. Perhaps this differentiates us as a species – UNSATISFIABLE : UNMET.
And…perhaps this is a synonym for “Life/Living” – some ‘thing’ ever striving ‘further’ or ‘beyond’ itself…
Is the ‘definition’ of “Life” simply WANTING FOR MORE?
i.e. – entities remaining alive, period – according to DESIRE?
The want for a story. A ‘reason’ to be. To be meaning. To signal. To call & respond. To exist.
But all those are “more-than.”
The Myth in the Verse
The River of Bees
BY W. S. MERWIN
In a dream I returned to the river of bees
Five orange trees by the bridge and
Beside two mills my house
Into whose courtyard a blindman followed
The goats and stood singing
Of what was older
Soon it will be fifteen years
He was old he will have fallen into his eyes
I took my eyes
A long way to the calendars
Room after room asking how shall I live
One of the ends is made of streets
One man processions carry through it
Empty bottles their
Image of hope
It was offered to me by name
Once once and once
In the same city I was born
Asking what shall I say
He will have fallen into his mouth
Men think they are better than grass
I return to his voice rising like a forkful of hay
He was old he is not real nothing is real
Nor the noise of death drawing water
We are the echo of the future
On the door it says what to do to survive
But we were not born to survive
Only to live
- S. Merwin, “The River of Bees” from The Second Four Books of Poems(Port Townsend, Washington: Copper Canyon Press, 1993). Copyright © 1993 by W. S. Merwin. Reprinted with the permission of The Wylie Agency, Inc.
– a novel? –
We untiringly construct the world in order that the hidden dissolution, the universal corruption that governs what ‘is’ should be forgotten [Death, or its refusal] in favor of a clear and defined coherence of notions and objects, relations and forms…
Thought and writing weave an apprenticeship…
…it will not hold, meaning and words, it will not hold.
-Dan Beachy-Quick & Matthew Ghoulish-
our limited mode of access to reality
The novel hurled to the ground breaks into verse and achieves a perfect synthesis
each page a fractured, beating thing
He woke far too early, and could not back to sleep. Even slumber. Broken into verse. Eyes needled with discomfort, asking for their closing, refusing to stay shut. And her. Her, the one pushing away, the one who woke him, the one asking him to ‘please move farther’ when there is no room. And so he enters a deep – after a fashion, or of a sort – a sleepy sleepless land, an engagement like great fiction.
Without synthesis and not unbroken, but scattered in its way, as insomnia might be, like stars, like sky, the bewilderment of travel. An apprenticeship in weaving. The dreaming in the waking. Age-old questions, rich and beautiful: unanswered. The meaning and the words continue refusing to hold. Something “like” that, unlikably.
our words are so light that they keep opening out into questions…
…when you affirm, you still question