it is not tools but the horrid state of masturbatory technology & intellectual impotence that makes us such scum//
The ‘Deleuzian’ century closed and its successor brought a dramatic return of the repressed as the scared masses took fright and clamoured not ‘with’ the tremors of Being but rather ‘for’ the One and its demonized Opposites, all the dreaded identities. Because as all of us know, closet Deleuzians or not, we are never one nor another, but certainly many, a mass, a crowd, a bunch and no one is supposed to win this life-game which only despots take seriously. With this return of Identity came necessarily the society of control. Deleuze had correctly predicted whose model was the motorway where freedom becomes solely an illusion, where everything one does is visioned, catalogued and potential to be used against us at any time. All that ensues is clockwork orange, and we as citizens are all decidedly lemons!
A Thousand Plateaux written with Guattari was probably the most overwhelming non-poetic reading experience I had as a student and many evenings were spent reading it aloud with my fellow students at NYU in my ground floor flat in the East Village, 3rd and 7th to be precise. Certain plateaux were read with a fine tooth comb, others were ignored and returned to at a later date. Deleuze and Guattari had after all encouraged artist-readers, non-philosophers, to take what they could when they could, to create their own machines, their own assemblages with whatever was at hand because after all the question was always: how to get out, how to let fresh air in, how to evacuate the suffocation of despotic institutions like universities which already back then (1990) were fabricating professor-business men-vendors with theories for sale and ideologies in suitcases to spread over willing student minds for pricey diplomas.
Deleuze and Guattari were unteachable in those days and any mention of them provoked chaos in the lecture rooms. Frequent adjectives were ‘unreadable,’ ‘incomprehensible,’ ‘dangerous’… That is when you could have real fun with concepts such as ‘deterritorialization.’ Much laughter was had at the expense of the advocates of the fashionable doxas of Lacarne, Derridar and Barrethes…
McLean I imagine had many a roar of laughter reading ‘A Thousand Plateaux’ and as good poets will, his readings and impressions made their ways into notebooks and pads. Lucky are those today who can read these immensely enjoyable vignettes which not only play freely with the spirits of the glorious nomad thinkers but place their concepts firmly in the society of control, 2016.
It is the destiny of thinker poets to be overlooked and ignored because they fall between categories, foul of classifications and ideologies. Are they really poets, these folk who cite Hegel and Heidegger? Can thoughts be expressed into poetic form anyway? Let’s face it, the same arguments have been raised against many an illustrious predecessor. No need to mention names. But today, I am told, we are all poets. We all have little secrets to share. We have emotions to dress in romantic script. We can take up poetry, like a gardener picks up his spade to dig his first vegetable patch. Deleuze himself hated French literature for its psycho-analytical bent, for its obsessions and perversions. The superiority of Anglo-American (and he forgot to mention Irish) literature being its lines of flight…. its becomings…. But language is a recalcitrant field. The act of writing reminiscent of Sisyphus, push a frosty boulder upward, ever upward, to the unattainable star. He probably won’t enjoy me saying this, but in this regard McLean is a traditional poet, as much as any today. He perfects his craft in solitude. Book by book, the idiom improves, singing, laughing, thinking. “One must have chaos in one to give birth to a dancing star.”
McLean’s diagnosis is spot on.
we have become the creature that both eats & is eaten, a night
forever completely devoid of ideas worth having or any
conceivable meaning/ / gormless Godot is drunk again &
snoozing somewhere in the worthless heart of being (temple destroyed)
here there echoes the cretinous giggle of the pornographer
priest with his active camera, his hymns to null & the absent…
there are no honest warriors left today
(face of the despot)
What perhaps even Deleuze in his aristocratic brilliance could not presage was the rise of the pornopticon which from priest to bureaucrat, from the Kremlin to the Pharmahouse, enable the States of the world, all together and without exception, to re-territorialize desires and ‘pervertize’ the young, tying their memories and developments to a morbid technology which handicaps sexuality and puts resistance to sleep in a nihilistic heaven where even the worst fanatics with furious machetes cannot escape their immediate return as cartoons. ‘the men who police thought are not actual policemen who/would hesitate to think, were this so much as possible in their/ debilitated condition, preferring to the lick the sweaty nipples of/ evil & devote themselves to a smarmy fascism//‘
In his most recent tome, McLean comes to terms with Deleuzian concepts in a 21st world. The parabola of the boomerang of perversion is minutely plotted by McLean using the concepts and assemblages of Deleuze and Guattari as tool boxes. This is no mean feat and we must applaud vociferously, just as often laughing at the flippant tangles which the poet inextricably ties the reader into.
let’s axiomatize indeterminism
to make the crazies go away
& keep the right white faces in mental
heaven; there are shapes to show
maybe, we do not want to know them
mostly, forever sounds so lonely
you know, like nightmares
with nowhere to go
(of axioms & other monsters)
If Outside is Desire. If the Open is constantly recaptured by ‘answers provoked’ and twisted into a ‘smarmy fascism,’ leaving poetry the only right to destroy the ideology of the Inside and resist against the grotesque State machine, folding onto imbecility a simulacrum of a poem which can be read as both flippant self-indulgence and fulgurance and illumination, because both low and high culture, pornography and art, co-exist like the evil and the good sister in Bluebeard’s cave. The simulacrum so good, you tire to distinguish one from the other.
If all of the above, the desert? If Desire is the adolescence of thought, its necessary madness, its rites of possession, its myriad becomings, then the Desert is wisdom, becoming imperceptible, the right to breathe in words. Finally amid the One which is everything. Here is the Desert.
& it is the futile Peyote Dance resurrected again for all the
madmen hanging like bats from the rafters in some
disingenuous midnight temple. they have torn the scabs from
their arms to wall up the seven devils dead & eternally
protected accordingly, they are losing all their memories to be;
they are forgetting memory & learning to be // they want to be
everything but no body wants to be free
Rarely has such lucidity pinpointed the hypocrisies of Self and glorified selves in Collectives clamouring for Freedom and needing corpses and morals, when they haven’t been mad enough yet to see the futility in their madness, when they haven’t collected enough matter to find the Desert in themselves, in the cold North, where ingenuous temples grow for the night amid dunes of Nothing.
Who speaks desert speaks Nomad. But who knows society knows that ‘eyes are for spying with not seeing’ and that collective hope is an alias for suffering and ‘they are watching the children the prisoners the madmen in the distorting mirrors of this disgusting cunting panopticon’ and we are probably not ready to be nomad and we are probably not ready for Deleuze or Guattari or any of his one thousand distorted plateaux. Society is not worthy. It is just killing and destruction because the State ensure ‘they are born crippled,’ and ‘death is better than labour.’
Who reads this book knows hope is extraneous to matter. The physics of poetry, the immanence of the dissecting pen, imply the end of all forms of transcendence and a mockery of all their avatars. Difference and repetition of the whole history of poetry. ‘Structure is for vermin.’
I looked in vain for the Desert. I saw some animals passing the dunes. I spotted Artaud. I will keep an eye out for the nomads as i keep reading, backwards, inside out, dancing and laughing. There really is no need to be sad in this hell, because ‘the outsider comes undone.’
I heard some echoes.
I saw some footsteps.
I know the desert will burn again one day.
“none unto/ ever unto blind bones for hyenic jaws agape no end till arbitrary reflect until…
precipice deliverance collide cauterize ache trace what lung foreign silentee…
breach dead stone purpose un-salve reduct cascade it-bitten brace long shadow fallen…
zero-tone eclipse ever-forage no not once still yet what as if to say some bankrupt cannot…
taste waste attrition locked once more upon utters vast no utters coliseum naught…” (In Absentia)
this beginning of a book of Michael McAloran, one of the best Irish writers of today, already illustrates my thesis, that Michael in his writing digs out his writing, digs out all from underneath, to get to the essence of it all, which nowadays seems to be: nothing. writing is the medium with which one can reach these escatological esthetics, a kind of “anti-esthetics”, seemingly the best as it eradicates itself while forwarding. of course there are plenty of examples in other arts, philosophies and cultures too but specifically in Michael’s poetry, poetry/prose, one finds a sufficiently radical expression of this black widow like “literature fatale”. or a neoBurroughs, neoGenet, neoDuras, neoStein, so to speak.
an “ever-forage” will go on and on in a “neopostworld” or otherwise, prepostcataclysmic world, then, the report of it, as already that other Irish writer had spread out, and that other: Joyce and Beckett. as always in literature there is the factor of parricide and it may as well be them, to radicalise, which comprises what it also may be, radicalise by eradicating them. in my opinion Michael goes much further and also shows this new feature of “anti-esthetics”, punk-esthetics, to gradually inject into what is written subtle dosages of toxins, which at once secure as dissect the literature which is build up while nowhere immune for the circumstantial pressures of “outside”, and to withstand them is to not withstand them but let them in and whatever the fuck it is they’re going to do: let them have it.
“cancel adrift redempt no drag trace awash with crimson surmount in ever-banquet…
eyes nothing tongue dead some pulse-bud symbiosis lapse no retort…
devours silt stone trade meat for nothing ever in bone deaf ever unto it says a glint…
words to carve out absenteeism/ it is stun less than ever-collision…”
in some manner this is writing on the skin of the world and we find a plentitude of stylistic features with apparent overlappings with a small contingent of other artists, writers. there is the threatening “listing” method already a Linnaeus set up to classify the botanic world. yet this means here in literature an endpoint is reached, a “dead center”. metaphorial, meritorial, economist, schoolist variables are already left here. in fact we’re really standing on the edge of the world.
“eyes nothing tongue dead some pulse-bud symbiosis lapse no retort… “
this sentence, “sentence”, sentence in literaturetheoretical aspect as judicial aspect, with its double negations, nevertheless conveys a richness which makes reminesces to Adorno’s “Negative Dialektik”(1969) and “Ästhetische Theorie”which offered a dense, acribic language to decifer either or disencrypt, as he wrote in “paratactic patches” the imminent contradictions of which were no negative feature rather undistorted characteristics of “the case itself”. perhaps “some pulse-bud lapse” still beholds a cache for remnants of a stash of coke could be held in but it is the “Tacoma Narrows Bridge”, which, collapsed.
In the following last passus (i loathe the term “stanza”) i will make some final comparisons of Michael’s idiosyncratic art, poetry, poetry/prose, with other artists who, as i feel, show resemblances in style, un/style, approachability (or not, which i’ve learned from my own writings to not being a negative feature), inherent strength of voice (irrevocably), abstrahation of topic yet an accurate mappology of the endworld. Gertrude Stein in her “The Making of Americans” show in to the hilt that is: unto inintelligibility, in unbearable repetitive prose, “The Making of Americans” and it is a phenomenal book. what these writers do (Michael, Stein, Adorno) is an upholstery of the surfaces of the world, an inner and outer lining, following every crevasce, niche, gargoyle, pocked and lesioned area, they offer zone-floating, belettered and besieged and antsed up surfaces in either profane, sacral (but only mock-sacral), surfacial and perhaps superficial tableaux vivantes et morts alike. a funeral of the world as we know it. Marguerite Duras did the same and with Alain Robbe-Grillet, two representatives of the “Nouveau Roman” they, offered unbelievable accurate but therefor also unbearable, exhausting descriptions of all through each other (Duras) or a fourty page description of how a gull sat on a pole (Robbe-Grillet). sat on a pole, a description of the pole, the wind, the colours of pole and seagull, a wavering of its feathers by which kind of wind, a description of the water, waves, engulfments or withdrawal et cetera. in fact this was an assault, an assasination of certain older ways of writing texts. Cioran, Céline, Celan all provide ample similarities with the writing of Michael McAloran. they stamped their work “fatal”, “end”, “deadly”, “lastness”, “lostness”. “Of the nasty necessity of being born” (Cioran). “Journey to the End of the Night” (Céline). Georges Pérec’s book “La Disparition” written entirely without the letter “e”. I consider this to be part of the same punk-esthetics while it is an inner attack against either syntax as semantics (which in this particular book were kept, to make it all the more radical). so here “intelligibility” was key to otherworldliness. then we have the utter gratuitness of Andy Warhol as to live his life as a nylon fixture inmidst the jet-set of NY. it is these rims, of life itself, which are being, not only written by Michael (et al), but also LIVED.
we have the poet David McLean born in Brexit but living in Sweden and when they both still produced poems on facebook the flabbergasting identity of topic was apparent but a world wide difference in style. I would be inclined to say that in Davids no lesser “nihilistic, agnostic, escatologic, antireligious poetry” humor perhaps was the factor that divided their style. above that BLOCKWRITING, as also favored by me, seemed the preferred style of Michael while David with capricorneal rectilinearity offered “five” and “five more”. i know from private correspondence with Michael he nowhere lacks in humor and many were the occasions he called me “you crazy fuck” which sweetypie name got a rigorous riposte. while he is a chatter de luxe i always lacked the swiftness to answer promptly. what all these writers have in common is that they near the edge, like Rothko in his paintings, Barnett Newman, Louise Bourgeois, Majakowski in his theatrical plays, while Adorno laced his books with (the citation) “life doesn’t live” and in his text: “index falsii” (all is wrong). this dangerous style of writing (eradicating your writing while exuding it) is also the preferred esthetics of my brother and me. in the 80s he made the painting “cityguerilla” of a city with detailed houses, only to overcover it with a fiery black and red crossing-through annihilation. he went photographing without filmroll which speaks for itself. I believe all mentioned, fit this bill of anti-esthetics. what rests, is the debris after the negations.
Savage the Warning Signs — Lee Kwo — 130 pp — available here
”Desire to write to communicate is an obsessive search for absent meaning in the obscurity of lost tangles of contemporary thought/The Post human era occurs when the affective output of synthetic beings becomes essentially unpredictable/Information is processed at a velocity beyond human capacity to compete/the irrational and random appear to dominate meaning within a noisy prolixity/The Post digital begins when the unpredictable has stabilized evolving within a new paradigm of superior consciousness/Being and agency are no longer in human hands/It is at this interface that Kwo/s text Savage the Warning Signs operates as a digital nomadic series of prose/poems contaminating the assumptions of conventional discourse the bourgeois language of reason/Embodiment explodes into convulsions of desire/The nomadic text becomes a delirious entrapment/Singularity is at hand/a point in time when complexity of the integrated circuit achieves the exponential ability to comprehend and think beyond the digital/”
too much human — David McLean, which you can get here
From “Introduction & anti-humanist manifesto”:
“Humanism is very old, & it once had a point. The proper study of mankind was man, & theology was the greatest enemy. Now the earth that underlies the human world is threatened, & we need to think of her first, the earth that shelters & protects. Heidegger saw humanism as part of an essentialist metaphysics, & his later philosophy can be utilized to ground a deep ecological view of the problem we now face, where nature is being destroyed by the legions of brats that humanity insists on dropping, like mentally defective rabbits ….
The world is reaching a point where abortion should be actively encouraged, suicide & abortion are good & positive phenomena, and pestilence is a long-term friend.”
“A beautiful hand grenade of a book that would probably serve as effective population control for the hysterically reactive and weak of heart. Throw it into a crowd of SJWs and watch them die.”
A surrealistic text in two parts dealing with the banality of else and the none, now available to purchase here
‘…in an actualisation of the blood/ distemper light collect in bask of rotted symphony/ dense accord the traceless unbecoming lapse/ tide of one thousand pelts in the moon’s reflect of eye/ of pupil shared/ trace +1/ ache/ dissipating sound in an echoing room but one/ here or there as if to trace-erase-reclaim/ sudden shock shrill of tint of teeth a-grind bitten by obsolete in any dying hour/ the spit in the eye of it gifted spasm/ lock/ knocks once then thrice collective smear of an outpouring wailing in the dark/ the face illumined else as it dreams of else/ no dice/ in-dream/ stripped skin of an electric cable frenzy/ the hands dead the heart dead/ in an abort of restless unto-follow/ the sky is there the sky is a cataract of azure silence/ no trace for tomorrow/ tumour/ close/ too close to touch it/ the fingers smear also/ the black in the mix of blood echoes of tears spent gilt of the obscene devour/ till shredded once again/…’
a collection of poems written after rereading “Mille plateaux” by Deleuze & Guatarri, which you can get here…
‘Despite the innate rationalism of the traditional philosopher… something I’ve never excelled at…David McLean’s poetry does not fall flat into any sort of rigidity. An atheist, David, when asked, says that principles, & secular humanism, are not obligatory tenets of atheism, indeed, are counter-productive. Humanism presupposes a higher notion of the human, a reverence for it, yet David & his work retain and glitter with an irreverent & delightful disdain for humanity, the devolution of the human race. A scholar of and practitioner of ancient, modern & postmodern philosophies, the “body without organs” trembles in his poetry, inviting the reader through millions of conduits into a sensibility of ghost death love childhood in a voice original such as few modern voices I’ve confronted in my reading. Vistas open.’