De Rerum Natura: Hearing Voices
“This duty is mine and no one else’s; The gods on Olympus cannot touch me, For I am withdrawn from light and reason. Despised, blood-dirty, barred From the council and conversation of the gods, How freely I leap on my prey.” Spiraling in the updrafts, Picking off the Platonist capons From the Acropolis. Cracking out their skull-pulp on Scylla, Shitting the rock white. Dogfighting Navy pilots Over Kuwaiti oil fields. Doing a chicken walk In the path of a presidential motorcade. Doing the backstroke Through a gelatin of thorazine. Spotting god encroaching on my perimeter and Calling in an air strike. Mocking the patient oncologist. Mocking the industrialist’s philanthropy, Running his duality to duplicity. Doubting the wound at all. Bitter to bring the world To reflection. Thank God, I’m not a country boy Whose first taste of the big city Is from a window of the day room at Walter Reed. Passing through the gates On Georgia Avenue circa 1965 To fight off the harpies of sentiment; Rows of amputees set like headstones in the sun Honing their inner Arlington. “The new holy trinity is organization, technology and information. The new priest the technocrat.” And what better paradigm than The provincial mind of the Catholic Stunted in its shadowy precincts of dogma. The wafer of knowledge sealed in the monstrance. Walter Reed was not Whitman’s Vistas. There was a gymnasium and “not of good only,” But no Eros. However, among “freedom’s athletes” Every johnny gave evidence Of Trumbo’s true romance. My lies were the lies Told by the song of myself. The lies our Good Gray Poet celebrates; A young nation so drunk and pliable on those lies That recruitment in the heart land was like date-rape; A vanilla cone of pure patriotic drivel sprinkled with lies yet According to Kissinger It was our enemies who failed “[T]he impossible tests of rational truth.” And despite appearances It’s still nothing for the media to intimate That America exists in a state of grace, Guilty only of its innocence; Absolved by bliss as “Evil plays its part among us.” Hanoi Jane despised for her unattainable beauty Reserved for hippies, millionaires and gooks By those heroes of the mean For whom conscription was not enough Of an abject whipping. What dangers lie in wringing Reels of myth from mediocrity? “That reason constitutes a moral weapon, When in fact it is nothing more Than a disinterested administrative method.” What political aspirations Scripted by McCain In his servitude? The Ho Chi Minh Trail doesn’t need to prove its veracity Against the paper trail of Phoenix, Bean counting at MACV or Dropping in on the Hanoi Hilton Without a reservation, Oh ye Who evangelize the canard of reason. Lansdale told the Catholics that The Virgin Mary had been seen redeploying to the South And the Seventh Fleet came and parted the waters. Otto Mueller called Woodrow Wilson “A cock-sucker and a thief,” A tweedy college prof incarnated as our Hermes. “And when asked how he liked America, Mueller answered ‘Fuck this god damned country’” In pretty good English. Hoover wanted him jailed For the War’s duration; And Storey for just a few months ”For overstepping the rights of free speech;” Anathema to the scheme Of stepping over bodies At Ypres and Alsace Lorraine With the gate of One or another’s imperial reach. So who you callin’ ignorant, Donny? I’m not the one shitting into a bag. I’m not the bully pushing around the guy Who all fucking day pushes him around. I’m not the one waiting For my 10,000 ejaculations in Men’s mag purgatory. Ignorant? Because I picked the lock on history, Looked passed the jibbering staff, Gazed into another boy’s eyes, Took truth’s hot shrapnel And seared the sentiment right the fuck out of me. Knew somewhere, somehow, That Tonkin was not my Lie. That My Lai Was my lie. Reports of last minute Christmas shoppers, Fused into a delirium Of poly-eyed, giddy gluttony And the assumption that gifting Is apocalyptic. Startled out of an arachnid nightmare, And a Sand Man’s caveat, “Don’t eat things with more than one face” Crackling across my frontal lobe, And a dull excitation in the medulla. “By pinpointing the centers of cognition One can consume his source of terror.” Apparently ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ Muddled with Jim Lehrer During a chilled and fitful sleep Aligns the birth of Christ With reptilian appetites. Hansen, NASA’s baby boy, Mother asked me, Hectoring son of a bitch that I am, To pay you a visit. She says she remembers you from the glacier Way too much in a hurry to be its gofer. Now, the primeval is industrious with conservation As though the techniques of the rush of progress Were suddenly adaptable to the way to go about it. Confused? Fuck yeah. You deck chair technocrat. At the end of recorded history Uroboros is fressing its ass which is to say Has got its head lodged Right before our cameras; Right between its own eyes. That’s not news. That’s epistemology, Dawg. The death curse of a confederate. I have my reward. And the subject’s The reward of my lineage. To be crushed in its roiling coils. A vice turned Part by nature, part by man Laying the eschatological cable For this transmission. “Higher Superstition” Didn’t strike the right tone for confession. Yet, in a decade their bluff Has fiddled the breath from ten thousand species. Assassins' arms flap to fly In rapture above their crimes. Past hope, denial is pitiable And such desire for escape is manifest in murder. The folklore had the psychology But missed the agent; And succumbs Because prayer is all thumbs. Fact apostate, So the nature of fact, Its qualification, Does not aspire to relevance. The ‘lack of subtlety’ cliche Floods into play. How we can know? The kid realizes “ignorant armies” Don’t require enlistees, and Courage can be patient. Duncan’s “where the spatial knowledge does not exist, The iconographic does not exist” is to Illuminate Bohr’s point about vizualization and quantum. Without the physical is it physics at all. Is this going to be a problem for you Leibniz? And coincidentally who among you Is not so ciphered? As visual metaphor Clocks weren’t wrong. Quanta are fangs, Cycling dentation Locking down on time. And, not surprisingly, for a time Biting the aether Released myriad outcomes for the same form. And like Uroboros– revolving orbiting teeth, Drill bits forty feet across; Gears, phyla, binary, digital Claiming no prey with A vegetarian fey toward the object; And we’ve seen that glacier melt. Duchamp, behold my suave hammer! My coifed steel maestro! My iron Valentino! To die for! Oh Toolmaker! The extractive process Grips me unawares And yanks me from my being! So as Heidegger says, this is in no way a task That the Enlightened are singularly ill equipped for, But one for which They are ontologically fucked. As fucked beyond the possibility of ways As a peasant embracing the Tao. Einstein said, “Once you start calculating You shit yourself up before you know”--- And everything else; the key being “Before you know.” Tropisms limiting the input For the chance at A predictable output. Einstein’s scatology, the limitation itself. Shit for stucco. Shit for mortar. The road not taken By the technologies of road taking, As chilling as that might be to the condescending. Because to “seize the undiminished whole, [one] Must thereby lose everything.” Not Bohm’s beables but “The man who tries to escape From the universal, unequal and unjust exchange” Of the possibility of the ontological interpretation Of boson fields. Who cannot see his way in the world “Hath not a house” Because of Shannon & Weaver, Barrow & Tipler, Gross & Levitt. Whose ontology was sacrificed To the abrogation of sacrifice, Dashed on Scylla, “scattered relics,” Where pleasure boats now moor. Capital arranges for the ‘other’ To be uniquely “framed to fail and die.” The engineer’s plumb dropped to justify nature For the platte. That Lao-tze was flood plain Machiavelli, Consul to Sun-tzu. Death as failure, betrayal Of all that has been accomplished In abnoumenon only. Gilson knew that the positivists Were put on earth To align the stars with The failure of the scholasts. To audit the Vatican’s black budget. Industrials Up. Utilities up. So time is up. The lake of money is rising. The amount of ice produced by fossil fuels per annum, For the first time in recorded history, Exceeds the volume in Nature. A feat of enlightenment engineering. Hydraulics a randy monk might have spoofed. Or the flood the synapses of a renegade Platonist Might have transmuted in the flames. Delusion is key to The evangelism of foreign policy. Simply the canard of belief among elites And the triangulation of hope, faith and ignorance Among the fodder. Bernays and Goebbels refined delusion but Colonialism discovered the necessity for all good works. The Tao that is the will as fool. Still water stares and the way that is called The Way Is in the way. Bechtel, Halliburton, the Army Corps of Engineers, Shammed by the myth of the Great Flood, PR’d the sciences to concoct their reasoning. Las Vegas on the Ganges. Pittsburgh on the Yellow. Payola for Leda’s hit recording Of the Swan Song, that fucking DVDiva. Adorno’s eco-nightmare Godel’s Second Theorem, An ineluctable metaphysics Vandalizing construction trailers. Not the dynastic Tao; But the discrete cells of Tao Strapped with C-4. Or greenhouse gasses, the haunting refrain as The trickster’s bag Of Dominos’ sugar in every gas tank. Juvenile Hall Tao. Right angle Tao. Destroyer Tao. One legged, IED Tao. Jungle Tao. Desert Tao. Trip-wire Tao. The secretions of Doppler radar; All that’s manifest. Brute Tao inseminated by the Enlightenment In the rear Of the proverbial china shop. The Tao as all hope to abandonment. Coup Tao. Agrarian Tao. Nationalist Tao. Cleansing Tao that cuts Hermes’ throat Slighting his Rolex and cell phone. His grandfather was Bucolic Tao. His nephew, Trash-Picker Tao. Tidal Tao, fitful, lunar, the delinquent byproduct of The immunity science seeks for its object. The orphaned tailings of the progressive mind Scavenged by those caught up in Tao. Lungs filling with Tao, Announcing Tao is drowning Tao. The desperate ecology of revolutionary resistance, To fend off extinction. The Ghost Dance, Cargo Cult; The terror struck Red Guards, Khmer Rouge. Where the extinction of cultures Anticipates the extinction of worlds. Good and evil copt from the Aramaic. Was the internal combustion engine ‘bad science’ In 1904? Or freon in 1928? At what toxicology report does asbestos, nuclear power, buckyfullerenes Become bad science? And if so What was the pissing away of the world But the pleasure of the enlightened few, Racking up the intolerable; A mere moment's pull on self-gratification. The figure skater, blown bunting in oestrus Over an oil slick worth of ice While a trillion rinks dump into the sea. A “Puritan frame of mind” that gets “Killing mixed up with screwing.” You know what they call that. Got one today. A Private Stephen Green, Though it’s a Locke That with time so rigidly diced Our Calvin didn’t eat just one. Is that the gun culture in your pants Or are you just happy to see me? The Enlightenment imagines Intelligence and power while The Tao silts up with Menacing diffidence. Duality is a construct. There need be no alternative. No solution Except for its naming. Like Godel’s Second Theorem, A built in, metaphysical ring of Hell, Not in the blueprint, a particle accelerator for the soul Of Bechtel, Halliburton, the Army Corps of Engineers To dash their minds ‘dark matter’; For that one efficacious event That will redeem the magnitude of error. Ivy Lee told Rockefeller, “You can Lead with your heart And hire one half of The working class to Kill the other half. Or you can build a museum And let culture kill ‘em.” Just make certain whatever delusion they stumble on Conforms to your specs. The crumbs from such grotesques Inspire praise. And the enormities of pop culture have kept pace, Become apocalyptic. Are they just diversions If there are just diversions. Those new age, bleeding heart show biz friends Unaware Mandela did that hard time because Violence was the principle He remained committed to. For every billboard sop with a bullet You need ten Vietnams. For every Bono You need a hundred Darfurs. Every Oprah Requires a thousand Iraqs. Excess is monstrous. The impoverishment of billions Required to celebrate philanthropy. The disgusting misprision of robber baron efficiency. The boast of best worlds. But price is not merely a function of purchase. Not simply the poor looking for work, Shipped off to war, anymore, And accumulation has left a portentious abscess. Hollywood films where the audience lives An illusion the creators don’t share. Political discourse where the audience lives And dies a delusion its creators don’t share. Iraq, such as it was, melted In the cultural desertification Of the French and British. Tilling the tilling of the untilled until... “Oops! You got dolphin on my slacks!” Yes, Geraldo. The Stones are sold out. But what kind of “tribal ritual,” What “right of passage” Starts with Ticketron? Hasn’t media made enough claims on redundancy? Who, making their way, credits Tao? Who can lend himself to the ineffable At below 5%? The media, corn starch In capital’s gravy and The plots thicken With fewer & fewer possibilities. It can’t be simple addiction. Dirty Lenny’s bit about the strung out Horn player who “wouldn’t come on corny To the man who gave [him] the sound,” When, under our rule of law, Copping that plea to capital Should have bought Bruce his life, Or, like Presley, at least Graceland. History is a liability of perspective; of belonging; Of time’s intuition and the local. Omniscience resides in four dimensional space. Just ask Godel Who denies “that the concept of truth Is wider than the concept of provability.” Gravity wrests intuition from time, That time wrung from our suffering. Particulars parsed into permanence, An all purpose trope And telos as license. Historicism struggles to take the curl out of the fourth dimension To drag events over the 4th hospital corner of the cosmos. The universe’s elastic borders lost in The spackled sheets of a hospice bed. Thus, the organism’s parochialism forestalls utopia. Its misread, its manifold. Leibniz’s geometrical override notwithstanding. “Stat sua cuique dies Breve et irreparabile tempus Omnibus est vitae...” “Oh, what a tangled web we weave When first we practice to” conceive. Did Godel prove Einstein Gave time immemorial the hook immemorial, Or at least since Aristotle? Did Godel prove that the species is inadequate To its yearnings for proportion? If positivism means staying behind the yellow tape Of what mathematics can tell us, Fine by me. Let Heisenberg and Wittgenstein BE positivists, And Einstein on every other Thursday. Fine by me. We’re not so close That in an ontological pinch, I wouldn’t pull a thrice cock’s crow on any of ‘em. Once you understand how it works, you’ll turn everybody in And be home in time to catch it On the 11 o’clock news. Who admits to breaking bread with the Vienna Circle? “Logic is a practice insulated against itself.” Godel told Wang, “The positivists...represent their philosophy As a consequence of logic, To give it scientific dignity.” The “‘Godel program,’ the investigation of the limits Of formal methods In capturing intuitive concepts.” But “geometry as an empirical account of physical space”!? “[T]ime is really space!? Gravity is really geometrical curvature!? Energy is really mass”!? How we gonna break it to the 80,000 ticket holders And the 200,000,000 pay per view subscribers for the Sanchez/McCombs fight. “[b]elief is some sensation...’tis impossible For mere ideas and reflections to destroy.” Even Stephen Hawking is chagrined That Jayne Mansfield, backlit by 4 dimensional space-time, Is limned as two sine waves Ontic in the frequencies of an ‘hour glass.’ That beyond sentimentality Quasimodo is the bow that resonates truth and beauty. The necessary noise in the spinal bifida of communication; No information in a vacuum. That consciousness is a gawk In the fun house mirror Of General Relativity. That we’re the rubes and that history, Beyond its necessary expression, is A rigged carny game. That our arts are coochie tent boners, Not remotely fit for the ineffable. That consciousness is an exercise in metaphysical futility. Or, here, am I, like Wheeler Not grasping Godel’s result?` Unfairly, unduly fumbling at the zipper Of application. Or how would you stuff his claims Back into the hour glass The bacterial contents of a box Obsessed with exposure To the surrounding atmosphere. No one could grasp it, yet Godel wondered “[W]hen are they Gonna own up? There is no trimester geometry. Bing bang. And its off to university.” So if by tinier & tinier measures We accelerate the final effacement— Lavoisier, tell mama we were fastidious; That when our heads rolled nothing was lost. What matter didn’t didn’t matter. 500 years calculating but not responsible. Materializing the morality of ubiquity. Its objectivity; the ‘no fault’ omniscience, the ‘Already there, waiting To be discovered’ adaptation like Hispanola. That gold and tropes of geography Would blunder into time as space. An overwhelmed metaphor To assume the quality of desire ubiquitous. Columbus, like Odysseus, Strung to the cow catcher of light Couldn’t make of it What fiction could. Amadis de Gaul Soaping a new world into existence. The hows’ fault That splits Kant Into thing and Harlequin. The bottomless fissure Where De Angelo lodged To ghost its fan dance On North Beach. Nausea fades. 5 years past 2001 And 70 years since Dr. Turing Placed that doubt in our minds, The computers still Shill for Credit Suisse(Pause) And not vice versa(Pause) As far as we know. The space oddity is no longer time but cyber. Steve Miller sang “time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ Into the future,” But Godel insists there is no alternative but to Fly like an ego into the ‘c’. Aren’t we at the mercy of a science With the singular virtue of being methodologically Too objective to be imbued with mercy? Positivist saws without context. An historical method that’s No more than carnage in beautiful forms, Yet no Madison Avenue pop sampler Has yet packaged “those experiences” to Godel’s specs; Experiences not placed in historical language And “those experiences unable to be fully historicized.” Zubrin says apropos Martian tourism, “[T]erraforming has some history to it, About 4 billion years worth” As though a fiscal parable affirms fungible time frames. Historical thought only knows How to be aware of its result in beautiful shapes While late night sands of time run through Selma Hayek. Einstein, after long walks with Godel, Unwound by inviting the wives of his graduate students To rotate about his axis. The mayor says, “if you’re going to be paranoid, Then for the love of God, Have the decency to be paranoid about street crime.” I sense a distance, but he promises if I give him my vote He’ll put in a good word with the chief of police. The fire marshal says “if you’re going to be solitary, Consider house fires. Volunteer a check.” I tell my pastor I dreamt Saul was knocked Off his high horse by a vision Of Bikini Atoll; So I tithe North Korea & Iran. Descartes deplored literacy And, just so, the canon was defeated. After 500 years of man-made coincidence. What means Sudan? What means Chad? The stones are dispossessed. Banished. Mathematics demands Kinship cultures not be considered “[O]bjects given directly to our reason, And, as its nearest kin, Utterly transparent to it.” “Let my spirit carry me...” But in post-colonial Darfur its dangerous to harbor a soul In the millet. Colonialism is non-commutative. And, since the ENIAC, numbers re-enter The atmosphere as 2000 pound bombs So “When the soul Investigate[d] by itself [and] passe[d] Into the realm of what is pure, Ever existing...unchanging...[and became] akin to it” The timing fuse was set to Einstein. In a manner altogether different from Adorno, Godel insists that Every song about time passing Contributes to mass delusion. But who will pass us From one mindless ditty to the next After Godel is proven wrong When Yournau, watching the Dodger game, Eurekas! a personal relationship with the tachyon; And Jack Sarfatti can finally afford a new pair of shoes. Who breaks bread with the Vienna Circle? ‘I am nobody’ just “[The] linguistic adaptation [of] death [which] Contains the schema of modern mathematics.” Polyphemus is duped and Mystery becomes an eye patch; a lack of depth perception, Leeching nutrients and Injecting infinitesimal amounts into your biscuit. “There’s more protein in the worms;” More nutrition in the box Amidst industry alarms that ‘supplements’ have become critical. When Bruno said, “We are in heaven” The attraction to Galileo became obvious; Investors sprang to life at The prick of Brunelleschi’s divine abstraction, “[A] preferred geometrical frame of reference.” A fish-eye of an air bag inflating; Einstein all aboard a Turner. Zubrin joined this “ruling priesthood With its unique access to” The City on a Hill... “That could tell the people what was right and what to do.” Like Teller & Wood and billions For their desk top Star Wars could. Watson and Crick’s misappropriation Where those with only the capacity for the Method run their card; The hermeneutical Baedeker’s of the professional class. Kinescope, two steam engines, head on crash. The image of those six enormous Clydesdales Pulling a beer wagon bridled and blinkered. Or bigger: Adorno and Horkheimer’s Odysseus Lashed to the mast, spooging To the Sirens’ ‘number one with a bullet’ While the crew, pulling in the foaming roar, Headphones filled with fantasies of shore leave; The juke, Waxie Maxie’s & Napster; the Shirelles and Maguire Sisters; the Dixie Chicks and Destiny’s Child. All our masturbatory objects Designed to shimmy the shimmering fungibility of money; And the tone of insecurity in cultural archaeology Tuned to recycle that dollar Gauguin removed to a thong thatched with dead presidents; Where the hip-hop neo-formalist is suborned for the common rhyme. Jackson Pollock to place mats. I’ve been bounced. Beaten. Told to “Move along. Nothing here to see.” Crimes so commonplace I reveal my innocence at their mention. So fundamental that Recidivism is acquitted as mere technical iteration; And ‘loser’ is apriori the ‘three time’ formality. The distilled and blended evil That’s our purifying noise. Virtue, like anima, resides in things so That you just can’t get at it. Defended by its ubiquity, But when confronted no citizen Can produce one Henry Miller But nonetheless they suspect his communality Question his desire to question; To relieve their disbelief in disbelief. ‘I am Nobody’ wasn’t Willy Loman’s line Originally. It took Edward Bernays To adapt it for the big screen And a few thousand John Waynes To eruct its saddle sores Behind dressing room doors. And Reserved Parking for the stars Like so many burial plots. Why put that in my mind? You know damn well why. “Who loves not knowledge? Who shall rail Against her beauty?” “This duty is mine...” John, you can take the measure of things Without a TV, Step it off, but not with “jet age” accuracy. That’s right. Knowledge is poison so made. Watch closely. Go plasma. Eat TV dinners. Order Dominos. Tivo if you must. Knowledge is the Kool-Aid; The binding enlightenment covenant. “Pure insight...abstracted away from all traditions And social relations.” “Generat[ing] a set of ideals that would command allegiance.” Religio/Mathematical homonyms prefigured in Achilles’ heel that would not heal. Myth slanged. Brakhage edits brandished. The documentary claimed, “That near death, You become like a deer caught in the headlights?” A suicide pact of credulity; funny business. Fuck Eros and Agape. Its Evolution and Telos. Accident and purpose. That’s our Diet Hemlock; What money tried to lay at the feet of hope Without picking up that rag and finishing the pedicure; Denying Magdelene her cock, Oil and rag abandoned at the feet of what? Historicism condemned to carry the load. To feed the hungry and clothe... That Cold War canard where “Cunning is only the subjective development Of the objective untruth Of the sacrifice that redeems it.” Arlington Cemetery. Endless memorials. Man made coincidence; designer chance. The Guinness Book of Empty Gestures. Osiander wrote that Copernicus’s “hypotheses” Is not offered as “truth or even probable” And to compound that lie--- “[I]f they provide a calculus Consistent with observation, That alone is sufficient” Know the Canon and seize control. Fall hard for the anti-metaphysical canard; The breadth of numerical purity for clarity’s sake, We, are no matter the outcome, innocent By the method by which we fail to know. Jack Crabb told Custer, “Go on down there General,” Now that your purpose Has made a ‘down there’ of everywhere. “Mission Accomplished.” Quite. Those six enormous Clydesdales Pulling a beer wagon bridled and blinkered. We’re family. We’re as close as the jibber of photons. We’re in your face Spackling out your mortality. As you breathe your dying breath. John, you gotta buy a TV To witness this constituency To properly despair of it. [“For Croce”] ‘historical accounts were nothing But sets of existential statements,’ As much primitive and sophisticated Identification as narrative.” The tale of the tribe. An affirmation. Fact all sculpted In ice. The most shaved and chiseled jingo Getting the gawk. The water cooler talk. Rupert Murdoch knows Where you live. Its all location and armed camp security Dramatized as concern for our mortality. When keeping track, assent & dissent don’t matter. It’s all caught on the technologies that truncate time Boomed out in front of the stampeding herd. What means good and ill To those able to witness a technologies individual fate Played out on “happy highways.” Even an object, no matter how neutral, Sets up a telos. Signs in. The track of the particle is its existential. But they don’t see it that way. The internal combustion engine. Thalidymide. PCBs. Revelations! Hispanolas of engineering and chemistry. Was the chemist duped by scale? “No. At the time...” like Tennyson “City children...soul and sense In city slime[.]” Innocence! The sudden venison of the Imperialist. Swerve God! Saul in the headlights! One reflects, would justice accrue In the crucible of Godel’s paradigm? Would we realign with the stars? Barely “fifty years of Europe” Razes “a cycle of old Cathay.” “The popular story,... How the ineptitude of the time, And the penman’s prejudice,...” “[M]arches continually... Towards an ever-increasing perfection.” Or does Godel appear to freshen Through his novel expression and others diffidence “[T]he marvels of [Tennyson’s] morning, triumphs over Time and space, Staled by frequence, shrunk by usage into a Commonest commonplace!” Progress’s ‘Second Theorem.’ ENIAC’s in the barn; Fishnets over Baekdu; “Shoot everything until it feels like Indiana.” “Trapped in the grids and geometries Of that saint of masochists, Euclid,” LeMay at SAC in the 50's became the military’s “Scientific Management” guru. OPSANAL cast gillnets over Annam. And the ‘old sayings’ were eviscerated. “We havin’ a hoe-down.” “Bravo. Roger that. Knock Ho’s hoe down!” “Roger that. Coitus interruptus! Ho-Ho!” “Roger. Make Chollie pull out his ho’ Before Chollie make any more little Chollies.” “Roger that.” Mao, the bet is the net metaphor Beats the fish metaphor. “Shoot everything until it feels like Indiana.” Bombing runs as “hoe down;” as recreation? Until its ‘not killing’ that feels like work. The hard labor of conscience That aerial bombing helped so much to allay. Igloo White - the original computer video game “A sophisticated dual IBM 360/Model 65 computer system...” Reading sensors monitoring the Ho Chi Minh Trail Where “the loser paid in real blood, So that the winner didn’t have to.” And how’d that work out for ya? The machine prosthesis of “[T]ruck kills claimed by the Air Force...[that] Greatly exceed[ed] the number of trucks... In all of Vietnam.” The hyperbole on the part of the military “leadership” “Made necessary” by the hesitancy on the part of Congress The hype memorializing no leadership at all. And the hooey of the spontaneous combustion of arms caches Among the banana trees And oxen spooked by recon Hueys Tripping sensors they dropped the day before. “Oh mama. Kill everything until it feels like Indiana.” Before Indiana kills me. “Maritime shipping, radar, transistors, fiber optics, cell phones- The Internet itself. All were the result of initially military needs.” But out of necessity? And you. Yeah you. Is it in your interest to think it through? Easy targets. Roger that. The military analyst’s rhetorical ticks Like he’s got the little girl on the milk carton In his car trunk, Hoping the Semper Fi bumper sticker Will get him off Without even a warning. Ironic Bird “Relaxin’ at Camarillo” From the madness. Keats fearing that Self-Reproducing Automata Were “fated to excel us” But never their creators Who seek to tool themselves Out of their self-loathing. To right their minds with the mechanics Of no particular ‘object.’ And to assume that the loathing is universal Because of its subrogation to the ‘other.’ Mary Shelley was nobody’s fool. She knew not to go where billions rushed in Even as the 800 number accents Conjure images of Dollars trailing humankind in their wake. Soylent Green merely the Mad Cow That cows catch From human beings. As the aborigine inquires of Rousseau: For what does it profit a man To gain his soul But lose the whole world? Love songs, As though love won’t take care to itself. Strained through 2 or 3 chords To become part of a banality That the world is just beginning To understand to deeply regret. The same 2 or 3 chords of The scientific method as “We put In some physical facts, Follow the rules for obtaining the Needed results, and almost always Get what we want.” Until this moment “[t]he comparison Between the theoretical and the experimental” Had been “rarely disappointing.” An epistemological time bomb. Termites behind the acoustic panels At Muscle Shoals; Beneath the control panels at Lawrence Livermore. The epiphany behind digital’s “Its all the same to me.” “Reduction is thought’s own Disquietude toward difference.” The chauvinism of the mathesis “The object whose eidos is determined By the iterative reduction.” And its time is up Even as progress pointed in That direction that it was. When Wittgenstein turned From his Tagore and momentarily entered The Vienna Circle, Carnap said “[I]nsight came to him As through divine revelation.” No supper lasts that sacrifice does not resolve With a tin of sardines and a box of crackers To sate the multitudes. “...[A]ny sober, rational comment Would have been a profanation.” The forsaking in “the deliberately rational,” In the “unemotional Attitude of science, and likewise Any ideas which had the flavor of ‘Enlightenment’ Were repugnant to Wittgenstein.” And “[m]atter is merely the modification of the knowing subject... [A]s its idea.” Positivism as Schopenhauer’s “sufficient reason” Which “can never reach its final goal; Nor give a complete and adequate explanation” And was energized around the Tractatus’s misappropriation. As to Adam Smith, Newton’s system Was no less imaginary than Ptolemy’s; “[N]othing more than the relation Of one idea to another.” Even if the Phaedo is possible and Mathematical objects are utterly transparent to reason. Does Darfur’s store of millet souls reflect Mere quantity as “the soul...passes Into the realm of what is pure, Ever existing...unchanging...[and is] akin to it[?]” Warehoused sacks of grain; bodies stacked in a morgue; The relationship is stereoscopic. In the urgency “new sources of conviction... [I]ndependent of the overwhelming Force of historical rationalism.” Rash charity from a provincial epistemology. You want to save the planet? Kill the scientists. Or short of that drive them from their laboratories Whip them from the plants and factories. March them in chains from the classrooms And the polar ice caps. Like the Khmer Rouge, beat them into the fields. Put them to work digging irrigation Ditches to nowhere. When typhoid strikes fight temptation. Smile at the doctor And die in his face. Forget the way you knew the world And beg no one’s forgiveness. Otherwise all is lost to ‘reason’, The end time wrought by western epistemology. And the baffled churches that So gloriously missed their agency In empty distinctions and faux empiricism. Deny the institutions That strain against the Khmer, Sendero, the Huks, the Taliban, the Tao. The Enlightenment institutions that police the planet. That stay mankind from slipping away into Nature. Gauge death to find man is not the measure. But Nature, the object of science, and Mankind reinvented as such. More hopeful than Vonnegut. More steadfast than Feyerabend, Stop haranguing the snakes, Cheney and Rumsfeld and Dr. Frist, Who exploit the decapitation of a Naive Latino Marine For personal gain. Those with the courage to Lop off their heads die at the Hague, And you applaud. Die in underground prisons. Die from Hellfire missiles From 2000 pound bombs. That courage that only lacks opportunity, While you, feckless, Can’t even stop A stupid kid who imagined He was from the hustler class From a simple imperial shake down. That pack of Marlboros rolled in the T Above the tat. Unforgettable, cinematic, capitalist inanity. (And fuck the mixed tenses.) You’d think after Ypres, Hiroshima, Southeast Asia, After the 20th Century, That we’d gotten over canonizing every Bloody minded punk with a slide rule. Without science the corporations dissolve And with them possibly the grand dissolution of the planet. How you gonna make that right with Western epistemology set upon its 'object'? The steward that is the disease. Your defense, to put you or me or that headless kid Up against utter ubiquity. And as for that canard democracy; Capital has an image problem, But not yet so scientific epistemology. Witness Gates and Buffet Who, like Ferdinand and Isabella, through technology Renew imperialism and the missionary. The rise of feminism just in time For women to share the blame, Leaving the tranies Overcompensating and anachronistic as The bewildered Evanglicals, Whom god abandons, no more than Delinquent signifiers That the planet flickers out. Michio Kaku and his science as “A double-edged sword” Is still a sword. And computers despite Dennett & Minsky. Computers so ad hoc a technology, So passive aggressive and Diffident, they fall silent or warn, flash “Stop me!” The internal combustion engine Coming around, confessional. And nano up front That it intends to kill us. The sun, reinvented as science’s agent, rises Up and slaughters the first born of Sen. Inhofe. But melanoma’s collateral damage, The very testament, obscures the enormity. Eschatology of Reason unmasks at the zenith Of the Ponzi scheme of carcinogen and cure. Some would mitigate, “The purity of intention....the horror of result.” But lights out can’t be glossed over. Integrity utterly abandoned, so unprofitable, That in the face of the unmitigated None can be ventured. Down to the last chamber A few nano-seconds into the clock of creation. Cesium clocks bore me to tears With their half-life crises And its euphemism, “a public health issue.” The light of Oppenheimer; and the light of Townes. Beyond the observer the object is given as ‘real’, Yet the observation contingent. Our license for all our good deeds. Debate and expropriate the authentic With deliberate, conscious expediency. All bad intent, the nature of intent, this intent. So debased thieves and murderers just leveraged compassion. Naturally with enlightenment The money is the missionary. When you come for salvation, You come to the money. Come to the light of Huygens and Einstein. Come to the money. Come to the money. With Buffet’s investment Every endtimer on the planet has signed up For a crash course in epidemiology. I know my interest has been piqued. And if you read the weave on the handbasket, You’ll huzzah the irony Of the Fury Who ends the diseased With the cure. I am confident, And that can’t be good. It’s golden For those of us Who last laughed With Bruno; Who grinned as the black hole Became bullhorn On the notion that nothing, Nothing, not even light, Escapes. That is so true. After Brunelesschi pricked To the other side of the cosmos There opened the The shutters of opportunity For perspective To be master of the Universe, Obscured with the Dogen yet Principle among all delusions for Mastering the Universe. The shot from the buckboard of the beer wagon Drawn by those six impeccable equine asses, The Swedish bikini team. Beauty and the bestiality in numbers. The soothing Mendelian Brancusis of Madison Avenue. Ed ‘Kookie’ Byrnes perched on the thigh Of a lavender and white two toned ‘56 Corvette. Go figure. Surround us With metal and plastic and We long for flesh. The Engineer took a rib From a Messerschmidt And built a Packard Ushering in another fall season Of “sleek aerodynamic” horniness. And, now, women that mimic women That mimic machines. Perfection that does not sate. Little nano-morsels of plastic in my tea. The arrival that leaves longing. The car, a clone, infant yet full-blown In the ad with its pedophile robot arms Asks “Can you manufacture desire?” An hermeneutics so bereft of ground That only but not even Mendacity gets the business. Astronomy has re-imagined oblivion From which no light escapes. And the big bang is matter’s Parable of existence. Truth is, you can’t write the end of the world poem Fast enough. Not exactly the Seven Days in retrograde but Nicely contrasted against tedious aeons. Even eschatology’s great protagonist The parallel processing computer, That can instantaneously model its creator’s death Wish, can’t keep up. Its dizzying RAM a buggy ride Next to the steam engine of eschatology’s denouement. Some say its merely in the detail. That The calculating engine and the steam engine are of a kind Yet Babbage’s programs never took into account Being mounted on a train. The result: science keeps you to kill you; Science has become the number one cause of death From bombs to prosthetics, utter suzerainty. From carcinogen to cure and back, absolute control. The defining monument. Hollywood films where the audience lives An illusion the creators don’t share. Geopolitics where the audience Dies for an illusion its creators don’t share. A melodrama where the audience dies From sticking by its huzzahs and cheers. Laughter, tears, applause, curtains, Certainties staged that spray the crowd with Machine gun fire, the old rubric too perfect to abandon To automatic weapons fire. Another sprayed with agent orange or sarin. Another with the spittle of oligarcharcical rhetoric. Another with the spittle of hucksterism, hair spray and sun block. The well-intentioned ‘I’ invests more time at the mirror Yet the projection everywhere is the same. Who rules, Ms. Croggon? All aboard Einstein For the Oppenheimer Express, Fuckin’ unforgettable until now. Our lost intimate, the vacuum tube. There is no audience for the end of the world poem. No investors belly-up. It neither opens nor closes. No critics pan it. The cast party’s cancelled by destiny. No one exists to dissect the author’s intention. His bio is obit incarnate, Irrelevant in a way never imagined. “He had his reward. He wrote it. The malcontent.” His words scraped into an electronic urn. This Ghost Dance To Bradbury’s ashes And prologue to the extinction of all audiences. The scattering just a formality; A response to the hopeful Who would see weeds as soon as wheat To disabuse him. So goodbye. And Pound, there is an end to talking And the talk show and all talk radio, praise be.... Things of the heart Became bio-hazard half-a- millennium ago; Witness your sentimental Rihaku. You were distracted by your arcana, Your ‘paradiso[s] terrestre’ While the technocrats already Looked longingly to bugger Mars. I imagine von Neumann at the Pentagon And you a stone’s throw away At the other loony bin (And don’t write that I imply just two.) Holding respective court, One for metonymy, the other for murder. And then there’s Richard Feynman In swaddling clothes making nano At the American Physical Society, Right where GE & Westinghouse just shat. They rub their bodies with it And demand I shit on them repeatedly And with gusto, reports the Marquis. Yet, so little progress, our Juliette, Minsky has made mimicking the olfactory, And so, so little emphasis. Simulation is the purest fetish and Tests best to the five sensors. All that lab time lost to real shitting and fucking. The relief, the discharge when tax money For a Fifth Generation Is redistributed by the project chief To fix his favorite hooker’s teeth. All that arcade time lost to real killing, To overcoming the diffidence of a wasted youth By ‘wasting’ others for the simulated life. An audience? You mean give up my window seat So a bunch of assholes Can feel better about themselves? With my torch raised high Flush from the hootches. With my glass of spirits. With my chalice, my crucible, my Coors, My candles, my Bic lighters, my Jello shots, I salute all those who have come late to the frenzy. Pressed against the looking glass With their gaping, fledgling maws for America. Welcome. Grab a pick and bag a glacier For your Piggly-Wiggly, my sweet franchisee. Work your indenture so your doctor daughter Can scrub the earthworm arteries Of your fat white patrons. Join the cult whose rite is ending the world; Where to be, is to be the Apocalypse. Where FOX airs Armageddon For dint of being; Footage hacked up for terror of what graced it; Medallions of pickled Uroburos At the shareholders’ buffet. Consumed with consumption, twice shat On the commode of production. The happy cult of the end of the world that parties Like there’s no tomorrow. All the trite little apocalypses, Black Death, The Twin Towers, Nuclear Holocaust, And Two World Wars won’t do. Nor do tinny club med, gated Xanadus stanch the roar. Nor the liberal imperialist’s maxim That wanting to be like you Precludes them wanting to kill you; That the murderous debt of conquest is expunged By anecdotes; mawkish video of some Well-publicized heart surgery Or the hidden investment agenda Behind a billionaire’s crusade Against his own disease. “The danger is here now...” We should know, we created it, Is merely Advertising’s take from science’s take. Pound found funk sampling the Founding Fathers. In lesser works the monsters Are all about their Frankensteins. You can tune into their broadcasts And alter the frequency to receive Them at the level of motive. Ham radio. Concealed motives make memoirs compelling. Gross and Levitt say Enlightenment Eschatology “exist[s] Only because of, and specifically as Products of science.” And they can’t hear themselves Because “as a natural impulse, self-preservation Has a bad conscience.” But after Leibniz “The murderer displays the greatest calm.” “[A] frightful sequence of murder, arson, rape, and torture,” Little concerned if “they have provided their bards With something to celebrate for ages to come.” Or whether those ages to come are So inhabited as to be reflected upon. The confusion of efficiency with efficacy starts with Ockham And has its apotheosis in appropriation; “I am become god, destroyer of worlds.” Oppie As short-sighted about god as about nature. The heavy lifting of Enlightenment eschatology is done. Nothing for the ethicist to do but sit back. There will be no Hague for the Scientific Method. And that Monolith has conferred immunity On its worst specimens. Pluto answers with such silence That the one-sidedness of consciousness becomes audible As eschatology. Like the laws say for its victims, Remove is irrelevant. Look to sacrifice. Its all of the mind, the personification of nature And need to erase the humiliation of that error Through observation, through vigilance of the wrong thing. Two blunders the former greater than the latter That if not for the utter indifference of Pluto Might inspire a new poetry. Watch the American Reich. The world needs this right now Like a wayward trepaning. Corporations hod their swill buckets Toward apocalyptic utility. The 30 second spots That abort ABC’s ‘Last Days On Earth’ Highlight the threat With more urgency than the program. The banality of evil “zip-locked for freshness” Is now Endtime banal, Urging on that dawn The day after history When every technology is off the hook. A reprise of prehistory Emptied of bitterness and anger. The Hague ain’t the Pearly Gates With its mincing moral minuets of legalist virtue. The tin pots banged there Ain’t gonna add up to an apocalyptic good goddamn. Not close to the cosmic rap sheet on the court’s stewards And the gasses around the intentions of a global NATO. “How do you deal With an enemy That has no government, no Money trail and No qualms about Killing women and children?” When push comes to shove Nature’s gotta go. NASA’s foxhole confessions. Drones orbit, Keeping the ice caps under surveillance. We think--- the ancients, How could they have thought Such outrageous things?--- While “bedrock” science is countermanded everyday. All call and no response, just echo. Take dark energy: “Although scientists know virtually nothing About it - neither its form nor its nature Or even whether its is permanent or fleeting - They have concluded That it is theoretically necessary...” When there was time, time taught, But now nothing survives to confront a legacy; To keep it real, authentic as Heidegger called it, Among the Jeremiads of a computer modeled mortality. So max out for the Good Death, Recognizing the ‘tragic flaw’, the exaggerated gesture; Play eternally before a barren sea and on stolid rocks This Miltonic, this Empedoclean, tragedy; Spastic celebrities, train wrecks and tsunamis Terraform our Sophocles. Surprised that the shots of Victoria Crater bore me? I’m you in two weeks. Columbus read his Harlequins. I know. You think that’s a joke. “When I call the object a firefly...” “The name that can be named...” “I turn my seeing into a case of seeing as...” “...not the Eternal Name.” When Leibniz smeared that distinction With his dirty rag of mathematical universals Even the deadly compromise of ‘superposition’ The “ever-present symbiosis and interpretation” Was ridiculed and set aside until now. Now its science’s Barbara Cartlands Framing and re-framing measurement’s half-measures, Falling back on beauty Like, all along, it had been the laboratory’s goal. All that taxpayer swag for a telephoto Of the shuttle in matinee idol profile. A sanitized Darfur on dust bowl Mars. The ubiquitous Blue Marble shot. Petri dishes of fractals. The puzzled curves of a tokamak. Desperate to pin the world’s departure On the success of toxins in Renaissance oils. From the camera obscura The security camera bears witness To the end of the world At the rim of a new one; Beauty caught red handed Peeping the Angry Red Planet. The overthrow of the Ptolemaic system Launched the technological end time, As Bruno’s many worlds pointed up The insignificance of this one; The origins of a Western epistemology Based on license; on a world Bereft of the eternal. It didn’t help that darkness Had decayed into hair-splitting theological isotopes; Into a weak, periodic incandescents. The temporal can be replaced because If somebody doesn’t do it, time will. Pulling into space Became its own legitimate concern. Art was at first a choir, then in open resistance, Revolt, and finally, defeated and replaced Flushed out from its thematic keepsake. When it was art, it recognized danger. Adorno sensed greater epitaphs to come, Conflicts between titanic stammering elegies. It was a matter of physiognomy Passing out of existence. Internalizing death with Death’s broadest applications. The method most rigorously applied in physics Where there is least regard for common sense. “Rules that do not respond to...ordinary experience.” “Careful organization, logic, and precision in language, Followed to their extremes, Lead[ing] to mathematics,” “The science of quantity...” And “In the dizzy vortex of a cash economy The west learned the habits of quantification.” Newton, Descartes, Leibniz, D’Alembert Called it the ‘next big thing.’ And Pacioli, the Accountant, published his instruction book A year after Columbus returned from his first voyage. The inventorio; “the content of one’s home And shop: cash, jewels, and gold, Designating each item by weight; Next clothing, describing the style, color, and condition Of each piece; silverware, again with a complete description, Including not only the weight but the alloy; the linens - Bedsheets, tableclothes, and such - and featherbeds and so on.” Then on to the warehouse, the real estate, the money on deposit, The vig and vig on money owed. Still, “the square root Four steps to the left is not negative” but “Minus 3 [must] represent the quantity of apples Tom owes Amy[?]” While owing to the meaningless of such results Physics is where imaginary numbers go to die; Make Plato golem That nature can better serve Chase Manhattan With the positivist creed “If it can’t be quantified, it don’t exist.” The world once imperiled by ignorance But now the angel of ignorance has passed Leaving a glib, slavering X on the front gate. The marginalia that immortalizes. Recall the old saw about the sun? Well, that old saw has set. And yes Maher, no doubt you are a signifier For the dominant epistemology. How you say? “Superior persons believe That they were born after history.” Truer than you know. The way the ads privilege youth after Fukuyama. Like in the cartoon, Bill, You paint yourself into a corner And then you paint yourself away. That’s the downside of humor. Eradication confirms a plurality; Guinness of extinctions Toward the extinction of reflection when The river is no longer the ferry For the pixel dust called Narcissus. The funny man falls upon the mercy of the condemned. From the spontaneous combustion That shimmies up into the bonfires of the vampire camp, To the ice age valhalla of cryogenics. Arctic hatcheries; I whose eggs you on. I guess, yes, it is for the best And encouraged Now that I see you are determined Not to see it any other way. Son, to come to terms with the end time Cherish the trifling of its embodiments. Put your palms here and here, and cross your feet... Old timers thought ‘any program Without commercial interruption;’ Blake, Leary, Henry Miller, Alfred Jarry. But that signal’s in the censor And you out, going up in smoke. Any discrete harmonium like a Lichtenstein Magnifies its adolescent pours of detachment; Fancies its blemished visual homonyms. See you in the funny papers. Von Neumann had his Cordwainer Smith The way Columbus had his Harlequins And his goggles at Alamogordo were rosy-colored The way it is with any dawn That’s set to come up epic. A spewing Ygdrassil through Brunelleschi’s peephole. For the calendar it’s the roll of the dice. We’ve got to fade Monod. But what’s to explain our technicolor ‘Moses’, Johnny, marching our boys to ‘uncertain’ death? The cock-eyed optimism of Linebarger’s psychological torments So quintessentially 50's And crisp one hundreds -- Kilos & megatons and kilotons, Bootstrapping fear from one Incremental des nous monde to another and Like von Neumann, blowback’s White ash christening the fodder Like holy water. Sidney Gottlieb and George White Mixing up the Manchurian Candidate In Haight-Ashbury, and in that Retrograde Hegelian cocktail hour euphoria Who could be leery About something so hinky. The gods died a thousand deaths For lack of death’s detection. The hi-fi was too loud. Decades of excess Of prosthetics of mind and body. And you could not get published If you didn’t list hard left right Into Angleton’s mandibles. And you could not get there Under your own steam. The peace pipe is to the bong, What the bong is to the after dinner cigar. If not an end of history then what? Free Masonry? When the CIA’s LSD grew the counter-culture in vitro... Well, that’s water under the bridge. And because we have been its bane on Earth. We seek water’s bain on Mars. Somewhere over the rainbow On an oil slick bluebirds Are too sick to fuck. Its Nature’s fault, all tarted up with wealth. The way I know unraveled perfection, So at the level of action, its murder. We gloss the corpse with imperfect knowledge, Grab a bag of fries, a coke and Big Mac and watch The Endtime Forensics Unit from across the road Slowly dismantle a 500 year old case for homicide. No indictments are handed down. At the level Of nano, absolute zero or plasma physics; Somewhere between the prophecy and its particles Where the Nature Conservancy And Exxon/Mobil collide To reveal one epistemology. Once a perfectly respectable expression of pre-consciousness, ‘No Future’ has arrived as a caricature of socialized despair, Arrived right on time Just as Einstein and Godel despaired of the Epoch Clock. Abandon all hope you who entered here. This misery is not reconciled to Pop out in some Paradiso On Groundhog’s Day To pardon the shades. They’ve clear cut Yggdrasil. The way you know has done what it can do, And won’t undo what it can’t. Exacerbate the Endtime with Kyoto. Finance alternatives from the short list. This should sufficiently comfort a handful Of the bewildered into concern And leave Nothing undisturbed. The Enlightenment was the conviction that Reason could romance the adaptability of a virus; That consciousness is the superior delusion, And “continued appeals To...intuition proved necessary.” That “syntax was the wrong tool” Became the leitmotif of the 20th Century; “Mechanical rules cannot obviate meaning.” What gods baited this disaster? What consummate evolutionary joke? Flush to mimic extinction. That the awareness that you evolve Is more sophisticated than actually doing it.
"Crimes of Passion"
The poet's comments on his growing poem: