So FUCK Buddha, I’m Buddha, nobody’s Buddha, quit talking about Buddha, Buddha, I prostrate myself, 10,000 prostrations. For I am just returned from, I walked the bottom of a swimming pool. You are all sanpaku — fuck needs ﬂuffed up like a pillow. We had to put away my elephant. There’s a new kind of suburban armored vehicle coming out. Then I’m all, “What kind of demon place is this, I just want my elephant!!” Ay, THE PERIODIC TABLE, how many elements left, Ms Poe? But wait. Why am I saying all this? Because I’m getting started with something, & whenever I don’t know where to begin I just start saying lots stuff about the weather. “Well, Dana,” you might ask, “If such strategies are oh so transparent to you, why not spare us the dreadful task of sitting through their windy presentations.” My answer would be two-fold; an apology, first (& a sincere one), & then, a contestation, arrived at by way of a treasured meandering that holds in its store a bitter hatred of time as conscripted by the drive toward a monetized fabrication of “product.” Perhaps I’ve come to this point because, real talk & as you may know, I’m getting paid to write these posts. Memory of my Sun Ra t-shirt, my orange copy of Soap. There’s a little orange basketball right by my knee, & a parti-colored Dora car with a magic wand piano for a dashboard. Not sure who Sherrie Tucker is. The mind splits its attention as I wonder about it. One of its ears stays with the poem, the other, through the eyes, goes to Google. This reading was recorded at KU Lawrence. I find a Sherrie Tucker, professor there, wrote a book called The History of Consciousness. Glancing through her bio as the poem plays again, she’s written books about jazz, improvisation, gender, queer aesthetics. Feeling that thing inside where it’s like “God. I should totally know this person’s work. I kind of suck.” A soft riot of stuffed animals spilling out of canvas bags behind the door. “In the aquarium cistern in the deep ship’s inner, dark-green moray eels move in a slow orbit around the legs.” (water in an aquarium made of metal in a metal ship that could be on the sea and/or in space — etc, etc, ...) In this instance I am thinking of Kitsch because of the wonderful early Star Trek tropical fantasy worlds suggested by lines like “Orchards of flower meal, peonies of meat,” “red heat above the cities where the war is blossoming … the velvet butterflies explode ...”, “He bent into the kiss and sucked up the fat liquid with his sticky feeler.” If from real apples, pears, strawberries and almonds I form the general idea “Fruit”, if I go further and imagine that my abstract idea “Fruit”, derived from real fruit, is an entity existing outside me, is indeed the true essence of the pear, the apple, etc., then in the language of speculative philosophy — I am declaring that “Fruit” is the “Substance” of the pear, the apple, the almond, etc. I am saying, therefore, that to be a pear is not essential to the pear, that to be an apple is not essential to the apple; that what is essential to these things is not their real existence, perceptible to the senses, but the essence that I have abstracted from them and then foisted on them, the essence of my idea — “Fruit”. I therefore declare apples, pears, almonds, etc., to be mere forms of existence, modi, of “Fruit” My finite understanding supported by my senses does of course distinguish an apple from a pear and a pear from an almond, but my speculative reason declares these sensuous differences inessential and irrelevant. It sees in the apple the same as in the pear, and in the pear the same as in the almond, namely “Fruit”. Particular real fruits are no more than semblances whose true essence is “the substance” — “Fruit”. Yee-ha! Read the rest of Chapter 5. We are all Samer Issawi. Meanwhile, in London, they try to refuse admittance to Zak and Alfie’s trial.
This is not a test, or not only
a test, or this has been
This is a test but it’s
This is a test and
the clouds pressing toward
us. The clouds pressing down on us. The clouds,
well, the clouds well, and one fine morning I awoke to discover that, during the night, I had learned to understand the language of birds. I have listened to them ever since. They say: ‘Look at me!’ or, ‘Get out of here!’ or ‘Let’s fuck!’ or, ‘Help!’ or, ‘Hurrah!’ or, ‘I found a worm!’ And that’s all they say. (Which of those things am I saying now?) Or when I describe this neighborhood, full of taquerias, low-usage waterways, supermarket-size thrift stores, wild game hot dog joints and empty warehouses. Walls with grafitti on each block, beauty parlors (for beauty), massage parlors (not for massages), abandoned elementary schools, parks with missing swingsets, one-room Catholic churches, houses that are falling apart but affordable, street corners where entire families gather to sell rugs with polar bears or beer logos on them, corner stores full of incense and pinkie rings and tarot cards, men on bicycles with milk crates full of chicharones. Washaterias with pinball and Pac-Man, working pay phones on every block, pawn shops with Bible quotes on their awning, no contract cell phone companies. One sunflower-yellow cafe next to a bingo hall, a school-portrait photography studio, a bail bond company with a neon hand (index finger pointed to the sky) larger than its front door, a funeral home, a florist that keeps only ferns and roses in stock and a costume shop that features a banquet room overlooking an elevated freeway. Is this what I want people to say, how I want them to talk, about the reified me? That not long ago someone wrote on the interior of my belly, and the psychic ink refuses to dry? “It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs …”
I could go on
like this, I could say:
but I won’t. After a poodle dies
all the cardinals flock to the nearest 7-Eleven.
They drink Slurpies until one of them throws up
and then he’s the new Pope.
He is then fully armed and rides through the wilderness alone,
day and night in all kinds of weather.
The new Pope chooses the name he will use as Pope,
like “Wild Bill” or “Buffalo Bill.” Or “The Big Kid from Tinystein.” Which is right next to Lichtenstein. I wish I could say it was a rock star moment when I broke my git-tar, but it was just a clumsy moment playing fetch with my puppy.
[Note: Sources: 1229.
1913 51; JBR; Dana Ward, “Sunflower Druid Time”, at Harriet, 5 Feb 013; Dana Ward, “Listening to Fred Around the House”, at Harriet, 11 Feb 013; Aase Berg, Dark Matter, and Rauan Klassnik, as quoted in Klassnik’s “Some Thoughts on Aase Berg’s Dark Matter”, at Rauan Klassnik’s Old Blog, 11 Feb 013; Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, The Holy Family (trs. Richard Dixon and Clement Dutts), at Marxists.org; JBR; Abu Yazan, as quoted in Gaza Youth Break Out, FB post, 11 Feb 013 (“Palestinian prisoner Samer Issawi has been on hunger strike for  days now (as of  February 2013) … [he] was freed from Israeli prison after last year’s exchange of a captured Israeli soldier for hundreds of Palestinian prisoners. … However, on 7 July 2012, he was re-arrested near the Palestinian village of Hizma, an area within the boundaries of the municipality of Jerusalem. Israel wrongly and falsely claimed that Samer broke the terms of his release by leaving Jerusalem.” – Action Alert: Save Samer Issawi, at FOA, 3 Feb 013; “He has remained in the Assaf Harofeh Hospital after being transferred there from his prison cell on Jan. 19 due to a slowing heart rate. On Feb. 5, Issawi was taken in a wheelchair to the Magistrate’s Court in Jerusalem for a ruling on his case; the hearing had been postponed from Jan. 16. Once again, the court delayed the hearing, this time until mid-March. “That is in effect a death sentence, because I don’t think it’s possible for his body to endure until then,” [said] Haimeth El-Zabri of the Free Samer Issawi campaign.” – Lisa Barron, “Palestinian Prisoner Samer Issawi In Critical Condition: Exclusive Interview With Sister”, at MPN, 7 Feb 013); JBR but see Nina Power’s FB posts, 11 Feb 013. 1230. Jeff T. Johnson, “Separation Anxiety”, “Anatomical Bender”, at 1913 51; Hollis Frampton, “Pentagram for Conjuring the Narrative”, as quoted in Traci Lyn Matlock, at The Body As Conduit, 11 Feb 013; Traci Lynn Matlock, “On Coincidental Reading / Physical-Spirit Transport”, at The Noumenon Revelation, 11 Feb 013; Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar, as quoted by Lavinia Greenlaw, in “Sylvia Plath: reflections on her legacy: The Bell Jar was published less than a month before Sylvia Plath killed herself on 11 February 1963. To mark the 50th anniversary of her death, writers and poets reflect on what her work means to them”, at The Guardian, 8 Feb 013; James Tate, “How the Pope Is Chosen”, as quoted in Heather Christle, “Only a few times in one’s life does it become incredibly timely to post James Tate’s poem ‘How the Pope Is Chosen’”, at Heather Christle, 11 Feb 013; JBR (for Anne and Peter and Einstein); Soham Patel, “Soham Patel, Poems as Rendition: Or, Some Ways I’m Stealing”, at aboutaword, 29 Nov 010]