fragment 01

This might not be finished. Or that is I know it is not finished or rather it goes in there somewhere in that thing I keep claiming to be writing but so I thought I’d post it here on my blog just to make sure that no one labors under the illusion that this place is for linear thought only.


the miraculous thing about language is that it always says something even when there is nothing to say. which also makes it sometimes despotic and sometimes seemingly quite helpless to do anything about anything at all for what is there to do but to talk about what happened.

I could say that I’ve spent my life in search of a diagnosis. today I would say that it would not matter what classification I was slipped into in the language that medicalizes what it does not know: the intricate switches that run the length of the spine and the femur and the tibia and out to tarsals and meta-tarsals so-named just as though they stood for something else but the heck of it is that no matter what one says about the charge that is borne along continuously arcing low-voltage sparks across intervals smaller than anything one can see and how all braided together like the metal grounding strap that used to sometimes hang off of the engine block like it was supposed to go somewhere but stopped short of its destination and you never knew if someone had yanked it away or if it had slowly corroded to powder at that point where the washer around the bolt was supposed to hold it close to the automobile body quietly thumping over the tar-pitched expansion seams in the concrete freeways running under a sun that prevailed over its black sticky elasticity until it ran in rivulets off into the grass holding nothing together anymore except your shoes to the ground.

there were no words for that and he knew it and it was not even a matter anymore of trying to work something out for himself in his head it was or was it that to enter polite society and not to ask for more than one’s due one had simply that is you had to talk to them. there was no other way. in all of the universe where both potential and the real took on the blazing insignia of infinity and wore it rushing against what was frequently referred to as heaven but which chafed too at its own bindings revolting even against the patterns it etched in archaic habits ever scratching the same number again and again until what was written there was no longer the same but something like a crowd unleashed with every intention of doing nothing other than turning itself inside out with the energy that crackled from ligament to bone.

but it was not like that. if there is anything I do not know, it is that I do not know what eventual significance might ensue upon taking flint to the skull and spreading its contents on the bare rock in the sun to be read as bird’s entrails might be read or offering the interior of passion itself out pounding the sidewalk or blindly sweeping the floor for spare change and pulling up dust mites and paper clips.

there was not really anything anyone could do or that is there was not really anything that anyone would do realistically one hears the question all the time if only there had been something we could have done and there probably was but it would have been against all good moral and economic principle to do it. as I said you could interminably question what precisely you deserved out of it all but it is not as though you do not ask to be shown every possibility and then be served up two: if whatever it is cannot retire itself to the contours of a negative dialectic then whatever it is is probably demonic and should not be encouraged lest a message be sent to the youth of this nation to do other than nod sleepily or rather gregariously mingle on the cutting floor of what I always thought of as the film that would be made if the script were written on the floorboards of the elementary school where I walked with my satchel and waited solemnly for someone besides the deities I was offered to bear me up on their wings and away.

I cannot tell a regular story. I cannot work a regular job. I cannot hold a regular conversation. I cannot keep a regular schedule. I do not follow the regulations requiring me to hold onto my financial information for however many years it is one is supposed to do that because it strikes me as patently absurd to do so.

I cannot tell you what I was going to tell you but it is not like there is something else that I cannot tell you but more that the eyes and skin of the universe sit waiting in each of us but not even waiting to squeeze through this bottleneck where superstition and belief are both indistinguishable and incomprehensible but more than likely to kill us off because apparently what the universe cannot do is believe in itself or it is not yet intelligent enough to do so dumb things whirling about and colliding and occasionally sparking that wildfire that spreads so far in such a short time that whole empires rise and fall without each other’s knowledge in this far corner or that and if out of all of this there is only good and evil if workhammers are pulled as often as guns and brandished at this or that one life without a nose for wealth in the colloquial sense but that everything we need presents itself literally makes of itself a gift and no other hand driving it or giving it only warm blood giving itself up for cold blood or viscosity for capillary expansion or any of so many more possible exchanges that naming them would run off of every page and continue doing so forever the myth that one must tug at the earth and crack it and otherwise batter it being the founding tale of one of our stonebroken clan among many brought up on the hard dried mud flats of petrified riverbeds in all bad luck but now in the middle of tall trees that drip their own rain on moss and teeming loam day and night since before anyone even had the sense to write it down then why not describe a dream less impoverished before turning over to sleep sated with the radical generosity of the dirt that is not ours but only itself only.

I may have said this but I used to count the rows of planks in the tall vaulted ceiling of the sanctuary surreptitiously looking up as though that were not the most appropriate place to look given the sermon but counting them made it clear the arbitrary nature of everything that unfolded underneath it and I knew it and I knew it but it was not something enough to hold onto me when they grabbed me by the hair and dragged me to the baptismal pool I had long hair then and come to remember it was not just the walk which kept me so long from walking but it was also the dunking I had been afraid of being submerged since breathing in that lung’s worth of chlorinated pool water and I opened my eyes underwater for the first time and recognized nothing but kicked harder to find the ladder we all were swimming towards and as soon as my hand found the rail and my head broke the surface I gulped in a mouthful of oxygenated relief and then began to cough and kept coughing and could not stop coughing and through nausea and chest cramp coughed and coughed and coughed and the teacher who had not noticed before taking us to the deep end that unlike the other kids I had not learned to turn my head up out of the water to breathe asked with a laugh did you swallow the whole pool.

so there was that too. underwater for even a second was too long. I started practicing in the bathtub when it became clear there was no escape.

I cannot tell you how many planks there were in the ceiling but I can tell you that I knew already that there would come a time like no time when my having sat there would be of no consequence even to the heavenly beings invoked on my behalf on a daily basis. what I did not know is that the church had no door out or rather that one church contained another church contained another and another and if there were anything at all to do it would have to be to dismantle every one of them piece by piece examining each component and setting it in random piles to be used not ever again for edifices but as recombinant DNA that might fly and take off without notice for parts unknown and find the rhythm of the time spent heading there itself granting that exuberant peace speeding not home but home speeding itself but although I have managed almost to disassemble one single church it appears to me that the next and the next and the next are each slightly bigger holding more territory more armaments and more crowds willing to die rather than see them taken down even when they know the buildings themselves obscure both sight and sound of the unbearable reach of interstellar space waiting with more patience than we may live to see for us to live to see it.

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