Tuesday, September 13, 2011

(—a man told me I better think about my ‘system.’ Oh dear! I better think about my ‘system’—!)

It's true Corporate doesn't do competence in the micro,* but, macro-wise, doesn't jumping on 911 as means to create an accepted state of perpetual war in a world of diminishing resources exploitable by openly rapacious capital represent planning no matter how short-sided and self-defeating and brutally and callously and incompetently executed it may be?

I concede planning may be the wrong verb as initial act: power dictates without consideration. Power is knowing that lack of competence, when you have enough power, is no impediment to inexorability, and inexorability no impediment to self-destruction in the service of pathological accumulation.


Brenda Hillman

The shoe repairman works behind the married shoes,
his whole hand inside the boot he’s shining,
everything cozy in the glass displays, laces paired
on gravel he’s spread out in the window, shoes
placed as though they’re walking, and beside them
propped up, the wooden tongues of shoe horns, poised
to serve the inanimate world ... He comes out mildly
attentive, soft accent, possibly a Scottish
childhood, possibly sheep to tend ... Clear day,
first summer divorced in Berkeley, a time of seamless, indescribable grief; he waits kindly in his blue apron,
fingering the well-worn inner sole, and I am grateful
for those who serve us knowing nothing of our lives ...


The cleaner waits behind the silver bell;
he’s from Cambodia and has free Christian literature
on the counter. He greets me with pleasant chatter,
searches through the coats, some left for years,
he says; they make a soft blue whistle as they circulate
on the ovals like the ones under those automatic boats.
As the clothes pass, little checks and prints under
the whooshing of motion, I see my husband’s coat—
how long will I call him my husband—like an old friend
passing by quickly not bothering to greet me. Odd now,
I don’t have to pick it up, the serious plaid will go
around between the women’s suits and stay all night. . .


I watch the young butcher flipping over the young
chicken: he takes one wing and sort of spins it,
first on its back, flinging the trimmed, watery
lemon-colored fat into the trash, then before
he starts on the legs he puts his hand so deeply in
that the finger comes out the neck ... The other butcher
sets the slab of beef under the saw: the riveting
intricate swirl as the dead flesh pulls away;
he goes off, shouts short words from the deep freeze—
to me or to the carcass hanging by the shank?—
I can wait, but the spaces can’t, there’s a slight
ticking, then the carcass swings and swings ...
Somehow I thought we would know everything
through the flesh. Perhaps. But my days have become
spirit. The young butcher splits the chicken
down the back, seems to enjoy the crack of the knife
as it enters the bone, so I try to. Housewives lean
against the cool glass to convey holiday news and he
responds without really looking up; I love that.


oh Berkeley summer mornings, aren’t they—
what? past the French Hotel, the glint of tiny spoons
so briefly and soberly allowed to rest on white saucers,
the plums just about over, the agapanthus—“lilies of denial”—
in the center dividers, blooming, or just about to—
like me, hearty and hesitant, not wanting to write it,
not wanting to ruin the perfection of the poem
by writing it . . . At the dentist, the little mirror,
the dinosaur prong is put into the mouth. Mouth:
the first darkness. Nearby: the mobile with straw
eyeless fishes. The dentist will go home to her family,
having briefly reached inside the visible mystery
and found nothing ... I imagine Wisdom in the text
is like this, creating the cosmos from the mind of God,
looking interested and competent; she touches
the physical place with her prong, and the pain shines ...

(—a man told me I better think
about my ‘system.’
Oh dear! I better
think about my ‘system’—!)


  1. Seatsix' ants analogy from yesterday is good.

    You're just moving the goalposts on my point. This being your space, I won't impute motive.

  2. Only motive was another attempt at clarification. Jeebus, this is Spock and Picard talking about Spock's arguments with Sarek.

    Are you back in Sucktucky? For some reason I thought you told me that job was done.

  3. I am in an undisclosed rural location where I must access the Web using my secret evil teletoobz communications device.

    And: No. You're wrong. I'm sorry, I say this without malice, but with neuralgia. I withdraw in this forum to avoid unpleasant tendentiousness, but please be assured that Seatsix and I will sit on your ivorytowered heid come Saturday and help you better understand. Oh yes we will.

  4. What, you and SeatSix are buying me a plane ticket and a seat in Seattle to watch DCU this Saturday? Sweet!

    Wait.... no? Guess my heid is safe till a week from tomorrow v Chivas (when SeatSix will text me at 530 and say he's stuck in Chantilly with a just dropped RFP).

  5. There you go. Something for you to be right aboot. Let it never be said I'm unkind.

    Oh, screw it. Say that, too. WTFever.

  6. I assume they're attacking Rick Perry because they hope he wins the GOP nomination so that BHO can get re-elected and do more Rick Perryish stuff, because if Romney was nominated maybe he could win in the general, and that's scarier than acknowledging that Perry n' BHO n' Romney would likely all behave much the same way 2012-2016.

    I feel a little silly offering this observation, because I'm guessing that somewhere out there, several dozen other people have said the same thing.

  7. RFP's not due till the week of the 26th.