Tuesday, December 23, 2014



Lorine Niedecker

Tell em to take my bare walls down
my cement abutments
their parties thereof
and clause of claws

Leave me the land
Scratch out: the land

May prose and property both die out
and leave me peace


  1. The surface is fraught with danger.

  2. i went to a barnes and noble yesterday, and am going to a different barnes and noble today (because they have the novel in stock that i hoped to get at the first barnes and noble - and speaking of novels, it would please me if a copy of mason and dixon somehow got to me, thankyouverymuch)

    july 10 2013 we were speculating here in this comments column on how long b&n has left, and you, BDR, wrote two years max before B&N death - if you were right then my newly purchased membership will outlast the store - but 10% off! and free express shipping! one hopes that, even if they are losing money on each sale, they will make it up on volume

    it was that day in july of last year that i first quoted maurice nicoll here, and last week i quoted him again - at the risk of being repetitive, i note that at one of the internet fora i frequent the following passage was recently posted, his christmas message from when i was a toddler, and i pass it on now, to all who read these words, with best wishes for a happy holiday season and a new year that exceeds expectations


    Throughout known history various attempts have been made to awaken Man to the mystery of his existence. So strong, however, is the external man, the man formed by contact with external life via the senses—in short, the acquired Personality—that these attempts eventually become useless and must give way to other attempts always with the same aim.

    Man asleep takes for granted both his own existence and the existence of the Universe. This keeps him in bondage to the external world, to Nature and its laws. Such a man, if he thinks at all, believes that Nature created itself somehow or other, in remote ages—a strange idea if you come to reflect on it. Now as a result of this great power of hypnotism that external life exerts, Man's real essential part cannot develop. Essence, although not developed, and in so many ways childish, is the real man or woman and cannot grow as long as the part of Man turned outwards to life dominates them.

    As said, people take this mystery of their own existence and the Universe for granted. It is only when one begins to feel and ponder this mystery that it may become possible to awaken from sleep. This capacity is called Magnetic Centre. If a man feels mystery in all things, if he feels that nothing has been explained, if he can see that there are life-influences in the world, such as the Financial Times, and distinct from them other influences, such as the Gospels, then he begins to feed, nourish, cause to grow, his inner essential side—that is, his Essence. Small children, as Essence, wonder. They are soon given answers that stop them.


    Remember this: your Personality is not you. What is really you lies behind it. For, behind all the manifestations of the Personality and especially the False Personality, which is what is least you, and is the cause of most useless suffering in the pain-factory of this world, there lies something that is really you. This is called Real I.

    Being born on this planet, we have to win this goal by self-observation, by not identifying. It is not given. By shedding, by taking off, by stripping off the outer coats of yourself that you have taken as yourself, and starting with the False Personality that seeks to keep up nothing but a fiction of yourself, a distortion, often very expensive literally to keep going, and always a great expense psychologically, then you begin to move towards Real I.

    Maurice Nicoll, Psychological Commentaries on the Teaching of Gurdjieff and Ouspensky, Vol. 4

    1. Yeah, the talk of BN shuttering has gone silent, I got that one wrong. Having said that, I was in one on Sunday buying a book for my uncle and a book for my (not-blood) nephew, and BN is more of a fucking toy store than a book store now. Whatever they have to do to survive, I suppose.

      Got the nephew, a 15 year old, Zinn's *People's History of the United States.* Much as I hope it radicalizes the kid, I hope more said radicalization makes his rightwing Catholic ex-sister-in-law of mine angry. I'm small this way.

    2. i got that same book for my niece when she was about that age - no observable radicalization has taken place so far, but it may be latent or covert or set up to be triggered by something later - it's hard to make predictions, especially about the future, and most especially about what others will think, believe, feel, and want - the topic of this year's book obtained at b&n for said niece, "mindwise" by nicholas ripley - the praise on the back is so fulsome it makes me want to read it myself, believe it or not

      speaking of angry right-wing catholics, this pope is pissing them off - long may he wave - my spouse, a cradle catholic, speculated that he might be poisoned soon, as we were reading this a.m.of his scolding of the curia

  3. thatsucketh.™©

    Have a good New Year. Or don't. Your call.

  4. Guess what? "Weimar" counts for Godwin's Law, too.

    1. Yeah, that was unfortunate, though I do agree with the thought that what Pataki, Guiliani, etc are wittingly or not doing is preliminary to an upcoming employment of a stab-in-the-back narrative.