The True Sharing Economy Embraces Decadence

Inspired by the work of Gilles Clément, I am attuned to not just recycling but the decadence of rot, an embracing of decay.

From "L'homme symbiotique , commentaire de six dessins (La Vallée le 1er juin 2009)

En tant qu’êtres hétérotrophes (prédateurs) les animaux humains , incapables de synthétiser leur nourriture doivent la prélever dans l’environnement . La possibilité de replacer dans l’environnement l’énergie prélevée et transformée suppose la mise au point d’une économie opposée à celle qui régit la planète aujourd’hui . Le nouveau modèle s’oriente vers une non-accumulation des biens matériels : déchets occupant maladroitement le territoire et polluant les substrats au détriment de la vie .
[...]
Une feuille morte tombée au sol n’est pas une souillure , c’est une nourriture .
Note: there is a space before the terminal punctuation marks. Just like aerobic compositing , this aerates the text .

Translated by Catherine Lavoie and Colette Tougas in Public 41 "Gardens" (2010)
As heterotrophic beings (predators), human animals are incapable of synthesizing their own food resources and must take them from the environment. The possibility of returning to the environment the energy taken and transformed implies the creation of an economy that is the opposite of the one now governing our planet. This new model is aimed at the non-accumulation of material goods — waste that only takes up space, polluting substrates at the expense of life itself.
[...]
A dead leaf that has fallen to the ground is not waste but nourishment.
Decay in audio terms ... listen . . .

And so for day 1365
08.09.2010

Lounging With Lorca

I am disappointed in Lorca who never ceasing for one moment to see the beard of old beautiful Walt Whitman full of butterflies — mariposas — such a fetching image (see the cover of the City Lights 1988 edition) — turns the poetic voice to decry the

Maricas

Ben Belitt in the Grove Press edition of Poet in New York renders them "perverts". Carlos Bauer in the City Lights Ode to Walt Whitman and Other Poems renders them "faggots". Jack Spicer in his adaptation renders them "cocksuckers" in After Lorca.

Disappointment and intrigued (sly one for the slang of mariposa is akin to the referent of marica), for after the salute to the grand old man, the poem turns the hated name into an epic catalogue:

Fairies of North America,
Pájaros of Havana,
Jotos of Mexico,
Sarasas of Cádiz,
Apios of Sevilla,
Cancos of Madrid,
Floras of Alicante,
Adelaidas of Portugal
And this is the intriguing part — there's a shift in addressee (the faggots are called out) — and then the poem returns to the apostrophe to Whitman.

The good poet is unsullied. And yet that catalogue could have been lifted from Leaves of Grass *wink*

Whatever, Lorca's listing of the many names, reminds me of the title of Larry Mitchell's The Faggots & Their Friends Between Revolutions (Calamus Books, 1977) — the reappropriation of terms of disapprobation. Mitchell captures the glee of a certain historical juncture: "The women who love women wrote a song for the faggots. It was called, "Anything you do that the men don't like is o.k. by us." For more fun, take the beginning of a piece called "Disruption: Tactics"
The faggots never tire of fucking with the men's minds. Once all the faggots let their hair grow long, wore necklaces made of silver and shells and clothes colorful, elaborate fabrics. They looked so stunning that the men over-looked their principles and began to look stunning also. [...]"
This was ages before Queer Eye for the Straight Guy (2003). So too was Lorca.

Lorca of the locked gates. Whitman of the open arms of comrades.

For a closer and more nuanced reading of the ambiguous pose of the poem that explains Lorca's look at the homosexual "ranging from bitter condemnation to veritable idolatry" see the article by Ruth Tobias "Beauty and The Beast: Homosexuality in Federico García Lorca's 'Oda a Walt Whitman'" in Mester, 21(1) [1992] See permalink: http://escholarship.org/uc/item/5dv8f3hg. [Mester is the journal of the graduate students of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of California, Los Angeles.] You might relish Tobias's concluding speculations on the motivations of the poet — she moots the possibility of jealousy.

And so for day 1364
07.09.2010

Atomic Library Numbers

The circulation card in this old discarded copy informs me that the author's initials expand to "Edward Estlin" which none of the paratext shows in this 1965 Harvest Book edition of a selection from the poetry of e.e. cummings.

In addition the card shows due dates ranging from the late 70s to the early 80s and is graced by a Dewey Decimal in the corner.

811.52

The table below shows a family resemblance between library classification and the atomic numbers from the periodic table of elements.

It might now a days be called Melvil.
Melvil stands for "Melvil Decimal System," named after Melvil Dewey, the famous librarian. Melvil Dewey invented his Dewey Decimal System in 1876, and early versions of his system are in the public domain.

More recent editions of his system are in copyright, and the name "Dewey," "Dewey Decimal," "Dewey Decimal Classification" and "DDC" are registered trademarked by OCLC, who publish periodic revisions.
On the OCLC
OCLC is a global library cooperative that provides shared technology services, original research and community programs for its membership and the library community at large. We are librarians, technologists, researchers, pioneers, leaders and learners. With thousands of library members in more than 100 countries, we come together as OCLC to make information more accessible and more useful.
The OCLC (Online Computer Library Cente) operates WorldCat which I am sure e.e. cummings and his ilk would have purr fun with.

And so for day 1363
06.09.2010

Whirligig Jig

Monique Wittig provides a hint of how to approach Djuna Barnes's short stories collection Spillway. Wittig insists on the role of sarcasm and irony in making manifest that which tends to pull in multiple and separate directions. In her forward to her translations she remarks

C'est pourquoi à l'époque où il s'opère une énorme poussée pour évacuer le sens des pratiques de langage il nous faut insister du côté du sens et par le sarcasme et l'ironie rendre manifeste ce qui tire à hue et à dia.
It just so happens that the first story in Spillway is called "Aller et Retour" in English (which title is preserved in the French translation) which references a round trip. It is a story that has the reader leaping through time and space much like the to and fro of a railway excursion. We begin with the protagonist on a train from Marseilles to Nice. We learn that she lives in Paris or rather "lived in Paris" which is exquisitely ambiguous as to whether she still resides in the City of Light. From there the story informs us with the irony and sarcasm signalled by Wittig that
In leaving Marseilles she had purchased a copy of Madame Bovary, and how she held it in her hands, elbows, slightly raised and out.

She read a few sentences with difficulty, then laid the book on her lap, looking at the passing hills.
We next experience a wee bit of disorientation (the narration had set up travel towards Nice but we find ourselves in Marseilles): "Once in Marseilles, she traversed the dirty streets slowly [...]". One experiences a little shock of dislocation for that "once" means not "arrived" but "once upon a time" or "upon one occasion". We are brought face to face with the story as story.

Wittig's French version "A Marseille, elle a parcouru [...]" becomes with back translation "In Marseilles". But had it not been for the Wittig rendering we may have never bumped up against the English's dislocations. There is to and fro between versions that set up a spinning.

Emblematic of these motions is the description of the flow of water in the title story.

L'eau quand elle est dans la main est sans voix, pourtant en passant par-dessus les chutes elle rugit bien. Elle chante contre les petits cailloux dans les ruisseaux mais quand elle est caputrée et se bat et coule le long des mains, elle n'a goût que d'eau.           Water in the hand has no voice, but it really roars coming over the falls. It sings over small stones in brooks, but it only tastes of water when it's caught, struggling and running away in the hands.


Water tasting of water and the curve of a tautology. Water escaping. Hands that cannot clutch its fluid journey à hue et à dia. But words do hold it still for the mind to taste.

And so for day 1362
05.09.2010

What is poetry?

Echoes of William Blake "The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom." The Marriage of Heaven and Hell

bp nichol. The Martyrology Book II.

oh fuck it's raining

stick my hand into the sea

that's poetry
it's a peculiar combination : sea, rain, hand. peculiar, cuz it's poetry. but note the syntagm: rain, hand, sea, poetry: something falls, something reaches, something crashes its waves into something else.

And so for day 1361
04.09.2010

Pronoun Plenitude

bp nichol. The Martyrology Book II.

you scream his name against the stars
he does not answer
i answer turn
i answer turn
away
away
play with the pronouns. map the you to a male interlocutor. map the i to a male speaking voice. turns out that what you may have here is a wise old queen telling a young buck, "you'll get over him and find another."

* * * * *

permutations, fantastical

* * * * *

Félix Guattari. A Liberation of Desire: An Interview by George Stambolian in Homosexualities and French Literature (1979).
[P]oetry is a rhythm that transmits itself to the body, to perception. A fantasy when it operates does not do so as a fantasy that represents a content, but as something that puts into play, that brings out something that carries us away, that draws us, that locks us onto something.
And what sexualities does "us" bear?

And so for day 1360
03.09.2010

Staging Silence

From 2000, from some notes towards a proposal:

It can be easily noted that Hofmannsthal's Elektra builds its plot upon who sees, who hears, who appears, who is heard. There is a thematic movement from sight to hearing, from appearance to words. At one point Elektra declares that her unheard word is inscribed in her appearance. It is easy to read this as a figuration of the work of language upon the body of the hysteric. But, can we read here two silences? The one of the living: the usual silence that awakens the psychoanalyst's attention, i.e. the silence of the repressed (The hysteric does not speak but shows). Can the other, the truly other, silence be the listening of the dead? Elektra answers the dying Aegisth that Agememnon hears him. Agememnon is of course dead.

There is a silence which comes from the body of the speaker and there is a silence to which that body tends. Elektra enacts both.
Some further meditations, a decade on:

Of course many critics have focused upon Elektra's cry at the end of the play (and of the libretto) with its call to be silent and dance. But that is not the end of the sequence. Elektra collapses. Chrysothemis calls out "Orest, Orest". The brother's name fills the silence. In the voice of the surviving sister invoking the brother, the living are at last addressing the living. The dance and the silence are displaced. They are in some sense mere prelude to the uttering of the name of the brother. Representative of the Law of the Father?

And so for day 1359
02.09.2010

Lists Become Plot Lines

Insurgent, the film adaptation of the second novel in the Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth impressed me by the enchaînement of the sequence of trials by simulation. The progress through the factions (societal divisions similar to clans): dauntless, candor, abnegation, erudite, amity. The order matters. The protagonist cannot achieve success in the latter stages without passing through the previous trials. For example, the amity trial depends upon candor — there can be no peace without frankness.

And each of the five factions has a symbol similar to a Japanese crest.

The skill with which screenplay was shot, has me wondering if there is someone who could treat the 12 Shaker virtues to a similar plot rendering. The Shakers come to mind so many times

They may be denominated and arranged in the following order; Faith, Hope, Honesty, Continence, Innocence, Simplicity, Meekness, Humility, Prudence, Patience, Thankfulness, and Charity.

A SUMMARY VIEW of the MILLENNIAL CHURCH or United Society of Believers, commonly called SHAKERS. General Principles of their Faith and Testimony. Published by the Shakers in 1823; Reprinted in 1848. [Excerpt Transcribed from the 1848 Second Edition]
Why the Shakers? I have just been fascinated by the listing of twelve virtues ever since I read it in Edward D. Andrews The Gift to Be Simple: Songs Dances And Rituals Of The American Shakers. The challenge of linking cinematic action to the listing is like shaping a story around the timeless but sequential. (And frankly I think some of the aesthetic elements in the Divergent film universe have Shaker inspiration.)

And so for day 1358
01.09.2010

N-ation N-obody N-igger

First the note on the persona

As "red nigger", the lower-class counterpart to the "mulatto", Shabine comes from the ranks of the ordinary man in Caribbean society. [Patricia Ismond, Abandoning Dead Metaphors: the Caribbean Phase of Derek Walcott's Poetry (Kingston, Jamaica : University of the West Indies Press, 2001) p. 230.
Next the celebration of the lyrics through an interview with Nalo Hopkinson quoting her in its title [‘I’ll take my chances with the 21st century’ The Globe and Mail]
Whose sentences are your favourite, and why?

[...]

You may not be allowed to print the fourth, but it’s the final four lines of the second stanza of Derek Walcott’s poem The Schooner Flight. The last line of those four brings the whole thought home in a triumphant mic drop that for me embodies the essence of the ingenuity of my birth region, the Caribbean. It gives me chills, every time.
The words of Shabine
I’m just a red nigger who love the sea,
I had a sound colonial education,
I have Dutch, nigger, and English in me,
and either I’m nobody, or I’m a nation,
The last four lines continue on into the next stanza hence the comma after "nation", which lines move on to reflect upon Maria Concepcion, object of a love-hate relationship.

And so for day 1357
31.08.2010

Slice Acceleration

In our neighbourhood there is a practice of leaving books and household articles at curbside, free for the picking. Some have turned this recycling practice into an art.

The other day, I stumbled upon a pile of books which amounted to an ingenious gag.

On top was a Signet paperback with bold colours and offering to guide the reader to Dynamic Speed Reading.

Under the speed inducing paperback was a hardcover edition of Carl Honoré In Praise of Slow with its yield sign shaped layout on the cover.

There is a quotation from Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature on the cover of the Honoré book that reads "Try reading this book one chapter a day — its is worth allowing its subversive message to sink in so it has a chance of changing your life." Now I am not a radical believer that reading, slow or otherwise, can change your life (I am of the school that discourse (writing or talking) about what is read can, maybe, along with other actions, change the world). In any event, I found in my daily reading a passage in e.e. cumminngs that is intriguing for its word-slicing speed and its injunction not to hurry, intriguing because of its echo with the book stack gag — it requires some combination of both stopping to pay attention and some acceleration to browse quickly over the offerings to pull out the gems.
is always beau

tiful and
that nobod
y beauti

ful ev
er hur

ries
The paradox being if the eye doesn't hurry over the breaks no meaning emerges.

And so for day 1356
30.08.2010