The Slough

Blood flows in one direction,

            towards the heart.

Freedom, if the concept exists, never

Shall leave behind a single soul ever

Trapped inside wage

            labor to do their part.

Not money but freedom is what I need.

Don’t give me none of that

            wage slave’s currency.

It’s a great irony of civilization

that pure reason

            is in fact

a Gateway drug of insanity.

the God of the West,

            realism of capitalists—

Our spirit is formed

like water from hydrogen,

it counters that from

            which it was formed,

                        the flame

And therein lies the Great

Mystery of palingenesia,

            of the interconnectedness

                        of the heavy

                                    & light,

the hot & the cold.

Emptiness is pure potential

at bottom chaos

the interconnectedness of all things,

butterfly effect

ultimately the unknown:

what Rimbaud sought

through his long dérèglement de tous

            les sens

to know je est un autre.

“Truths are illusions

which we have forgotten

            are illusions,”

(Nietzsche). This is

the matter of simulacrum,

            for the utility

            of an illusion

                        is in its

            being seen through.

Stuck to facts,

all truth is

always the truth of power

in this rigged dimension

where might makes right;

Our human rights

are always the product of surrendering

personal sovereignty;

Our freedom of speech

is always the right of the State

to take that away;

Human freedom

under State government

is only that which can

            by brutally denied

                        to you

if you’re standing

            in its way.

            thinking and writing,

Creating an edifice—

the mind is a calculation

            machine,

striving to bring concepts

            & things

            into balance.

& Civilization is already

            a simulacrum,

especially when imposing

            a center on the boundless;

Hierarchizing creates

            classes of Master

            & Slave,

Language and mythologies

            are a semiotic code

            that justifies the Order,

and hence Ideology

            & material subjection

            reign.

The singularity of information

            is the boot

            of the control society,

And sold as liberating,

            a freedom

            that is slavery,

which is its neoliberal character.

Freedom as a War

            of all against all,

Law that codifies in Justice

            that the mighty will rule,

This is the neoliberal regime

            & tyranny of the market

—making us, in the mythologies

            of pseudoscience, believe

Competition & violence are

            intrinsic to the human species.

Art sought pretentiously

            to immortalize

By resisting death,

We’ve petrified life

And the contrivances multiplied.

The Lords even in death

continued to rule with their legacy

like mummified pharaohs,

The canon was haunted

            by the auguring

            of an Ozymandias,

And we all fell into a cult

            of personality from Shakespeare

On, as if under the spell

            of one such

            fragile Ego.

Every poem kills,

like in an exchange

            of value

alienated persons

can’t simply be

but in capitalist agony.

Write, rights

some have more,

much more time

deserving of value

to make their thoughts

on being an artist rhyme.

Being a subject

Every conception

is a form of syzygy.

Deny the poetry

            in philosophy,

the ideology

            in reality,

the magic

            in thinking.

The Lords are artificial gods

whose powers are godlike.

They may not even exist

apart from the human mind,

Whose power is nowhere

when it is everywhere,

nowhere in the people

when in institutions;

Nowhere in communities

when in the State,

nowhere in our bones & sinews

when in our bellies as processed meat,

in our brains as pharmaceuticals,

Surrounding us as in a spider’s web

            of digitized capital.

Power is a frame,

a picture frame,

The capstone of representational

            thinking,

A Master code.

The structure of language

            itself,

Structures of the unconscious

Like dinosaur bones,

            an unending history of brutality,

Arranging in spacetime

the black blood of Empire.

Flowing always to the top

            of the cybernetic head

                        of Talos,

As its structural hand

shatters the skull of the

            indigenous

with a billy club—

Brutalize your Ego,

Kill It dead,

            the Fascists

            inside your head.

            Give us

competition without resentment,

cooperation without hierarchy.

law absent of violence,

rule drained of domination.

            We must

revolt against the given

with “[a]n impossiblist élan”![1]

For to be a poet,

            a good poet,

an actionable one,

             is to be

a magician.

            Desire is the means of production. No emancipatory structure can exist that doesn’t first collectively free desire.

            (ii) It is consumption that primarily defines a late stage of Capitalism. Production and consumption are two sides of the same coin, like Master/Slave morality.

            (iii) Desire must be overcome not through denial, but rather through disinterested affirmation. Denial is what fuels compulsory consumption. Production becomes pathological under Capitalism.

            Be disinterested

                        in how

                        the State

            defines your Self.

            Be disinterested

                        in forms of power

                        that are slavery

which is the privileged

                        domain of currency. 

            Be disinterested, in the sense of free from commodity fetishism; disinterested in the sense of free from fetishism in general. Fetishism is a pathology of object-subjects.

            Need is fundamental. Making need equivalent with money is a historical contingency.

            (b) Desire is a complex need, an emergent one. Under Capitalist Realism, fundamental needs and superfluous desires become conflated.

            (c) The reproduction of the system requires poverty; to perpetuate this injustice, the petty bourgeois who could align with the proletariat, are kept in bad faith illusions that equate a lack of superfluous desires with a lack of freedom and even the threat of impoverishment. In practice it becomes a check on challenges to capitalist realism, by limiting one’s imagination to see life without superfluity as meaningful or gratifying.

            -白森


[1] Randolph Bourne, Twilight of Idols

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