Press as much of the front surface of your body (palms in or out, left or right cheek) against the wall as possible. Press very hard and concentrate … Concentrate on tension in the muscles, pain where bones meet, fleshy deformations that occur under pressure; consider body hair, perspiration, odors (smells). Press as much … and concentrate and Concentrate on tension … odors (smells). Double yourself. Doubling himself, he created an identity grounded in “It would be nice if there were two worlds that could hold hands without getting confused.” In one world we have “Lampada annuale” (1966), a single, outsized light bulb in a mirror-lined wooden box, which randomly switches itself on for eleven seconds each year. Day 4: Today is misty. I am really beginning to miss WiFi. I also am malnourished and really starting to hate badly made breakfast burritos. Key tap and refrigerator hum, sweet silvery sound of tinnitus, robin calls and sparrows through the trees, black dog bark, bottle clink into a neighbor’s bin, plush air of cars passing, blue note of a wood dove, whirr of a motorbike, somewhere a plane climbing the sky … and it goes on … What are you hearing now? I feel the density of the humid air in my ears as thrashing molecules. Disquiet at finding myself inside a house / with good weather outside, inside the branches thrashing. Dove through wormhole blight as bangle till I wore it over the world, stuckled with black hairs, come on, it’s gross, roll out of it and be a, gorgeous clear marble rotten of the state of being “cave-droppings” whose center is a “stone-hole soup.” The valuelessness (as evacuated site, or shit) of poetic “unmoney,” however, is for the speaker no less valuable than economic capital (also symbolic), which, like language, conditions value: “The unmoney is structured like a / Money is structured like a language. / Give that thought some currency”. Agamben’s theory of language as the prototypical state of exception in which the sovereign (metalanguage) determines the boundaries for territories of mind makes poetic language’s exilic state under capitalism heavily ironic, when considering language as a foundational matrix of “inclusive exclusion” by which things accrue value by virtue of belonging and being named. Labor (the third component of production along with land and capital), while referenced in classical political economics from Adam Smith to Marx, has been neutralized as well as concealed (reduced to quantitative variables of work and time), which is to say, abstracted: the logic of capital reducing labor to labor power and time (a commodity reduced to the effects of value produced, stripped of its concrete, qualitative specificity and historical reality). Modernist arguments for aesthetic autonomy, followed by leftist platforms (labor politics, civil rights) of the ’60s and ’70s, have been supplanted by those of neoliberal aesthetics and marketization, what the wry speaker of Nervous Device refers to as “The Autonomy of Art Has Its Origins in the Concealment of Labor,” a one-line poem in which the abstraction of labor is shown to be the genesis of poïesis: “My heart beat very hard by itself”. Yes, laughter was the fathermother. In round wide clods of birdshit bunched up and popped in big afterbirth and shattered. The splintering shaft of one sound held the black between the planets all together and waited to be beaten back apart now. The cells of future athletes were already screaming “I love you”. Then the lumber merchant gave certain orders to his grocer and butcher, and if a number of poor people were not well supplied with food that gladsome season, it was not the fault of Mr. Bobbsey. From then on Mr. Rugg did some hard thinking. He began “putting two and two together” as the old saying has it. He remembered the Bobbsey boathouse fire. On that occasion Danny had come in late, and there had been the smell of smoke on his clothes. Then how the children laughed and clapped their hands! And Snap barked so loudly — for he liked applause — that there was noise enough for even jolly Aunt Sarah. After that there was no trouble. Then, when they had on dry garments, and could go out, there was no one with whom to play. “Then come with me, and I’ll let you help hold the hose,” said the fireman. “I’ll look after him,” he went on, to Mrs. Bobbsey, and she nodded to show that Freddie could go. “Then we’ll have to give him up I suppose,” and Mrs. Bobbsey sighed, for she had grown very much attached to the fine animal.
[Note: Sources: Bruce Nauman, “Body Pressure” (poster picked up at DIA Beacon 17 Oct 013 on a visit there with K and Anne Gorrick); JBR; Lynne Cooke, and Alighiero Boetti, quoted in Cooke’s “Boetti’s Game Plan”, in Alighiero Boetti – Game Plan (eds. Lynne Cooke, Mark Godfrey, Christian Rattemeyer); JBR; Anne Gorrick, FB comment, 17 Oct 013 (re a work by Boetti, probably a quote from Wikipedia); Jennifer Bartlett, FB post, 17 Oct 013; interviewer, and Pauline Oliveros, “pauline oliveros”, at spacecraftprojects, via Susan M Schultz, FB post, 17 Oct 013; Simon Howard, quoted in “Simon Howard’s Wrecked”, at Peony Moon, 11 Oct 013; Catherine Wagner, “Resume Consciousness Every Day Feelin’ Danke”, at Poetry Foundation; Virginia Konchan, “Cathy Wagner’s ‘Nervous Device’: From commodity fetish to form”, at Jacket2, 16 Oct 013; JBR; Blake Butler, “Diamond Skull”, at Everyday Genius, 17 Oct 013; Donald Barthelme, “Then”, quoted in John Latta, “Uncollected Donald Barthelme”, at Isola di Rifiuti, 16 Oct 013]