Vagabond Starscape from the Corner of the Desert
A shale wind of hot oil, a coyote with a hunger-pill, a coffer full of them, and a gentle normcore band. A star-studded sequence that the young will cease to trouble, the bird people have no issues here. It’s a manner of the realization of an excessive politics in place of a cheap music video. This is the only inspiration, the inspiration of the manikin with no face, the drugged out goat groupie, the hat-salesman. Rimbaud understands the necessity for a business venture co-eternal with all strivings after truth, how the Marxist privileging of the material conditions finds its mirroring in the need for every human activity to now have a business function as its (sometimes indiscernible) REAL. It is not an upgrade, it is a custom upgrade.
They came in a storm and make no enemy of electric currents. If I bow my head and acquiesce, leave the fight, she will not have a question about how much one types, when one is writing these automatic sentences. This is the question of the Enterprise Evaluation, the consumption of thinking and galactics in a way that is neither “painting” nor “pure thinking”. The only other term we have, and I think it is a good one, is precisely “consumer-naturalism”, a hybrid of Thomas Carlyle and Naomi Klein. Put down the melon, and recite! Recite, recite – such a 19th century request, he mumbled. But such are the necessities of the “daily grind”, as Mao has it.
A desert is a concerto. A wasteland is a concertina. A hundred frozen whales are the origins of the million grains of sand. It is a cyberspace of the microscopic. In this relationship, no love has ever been less guaranteed or frequented. Accordingly:
1) We fabricate only from metal what cannot be done from wood.
2) We polish nothing.
3) We worship moss as if a deity.
4) The tigers are considered the most beautiful creatures, rabbit-women coming in second.
5) That we are pro “melting into air”.
From this it is obvious that senior management has no taste for worms, signatories, jewels, drivers, hate mail, clubhouses, diets, the last long letter of a witch to her familiar, crests, annoying house problems, upsets, crummy weather, predictions, the concept of anxiety, a set of any authors, the law. By these items, a regimen of strict procedure is constantly exploded. We have no priority on their list.
Who unites in friendship?
Who basks in the statuesque?
Who paints tremendously?
Who has relations with young interns?
Who breaks the necessary outer packaging?
Who has no toe?
Where did the lot go, with the visual impact off the page and to the side?
Addendum, instructions on dating a chess piece: do not be too forward. Keep the context in a straight manner. Avoid discussing the bravado of roosters, for it deeply offends them. Smooth out your facial features, and become a dull giant. Spy on ants, learn their secrets. It behoves you to try to read their sacred text, The Bahamas of Stricture, but do not attempt to bold a commentary; avoid the passages of plastic blood at all costs – do not mention you have read them, or heard of them, or even know of their existence in a negative manner. ANY MENTION OF THESE can cost you your life. Bake a pie using spicy ingredients. Keep it diurnally, and press a single slice upon a possum after the night shale of the aeon collapses the column of the Vendôme. If there is an end to real hard drives, these are the people who will fix it.
A throw of the panic will always abolish dice. This is the last temptation when it comes to gaming. That the spirit is done over and above the mapping (by strict geographic method) of the seascape. This is what the NAVY is for, let Washington and Astarte know.
On the Road to Abandoning Artistic Responsibility
And my visible absence of superiority — my state of collapse — is the mark of an insubordination which equals that of the starry sky.
– Georges Bataille (trans. Michael Richardson)
Artists always feel an attachment for their dreadful gardens, but they don’t have the slightest idea how to address plants. The weeds they call by racial slurs. The cultivated specimens are treated to the point of spoliation. Balance, a figurative word, is given over entirely to the mathematicians. Out of such a mess, there is no doubt that Egoism and detrimental substitutions eclipse the important — the planetary — results.
This is the contemporary meaning of astrology. Call on the star signs (and I am looking at you, Aquarius) to take the full brunt of the responsibility. Maybe authors cannot wholly be gotten rid of, as Theory intimates… But can we at least reduce their number to twelve? Twelve authors is enough to manage even for the critics (if they put in some effort, they can even synthesize a symbolism out of it).
One authorial ticket per star sign. “That plot device is Sagittarian.” “This piece is Pisces at its core.” “Consider why Cancer’s Kehre (turn) was so bound up with its political commitment.” etc. We could then organize the humans (contingently, and with full recognition) into their respective star signs, and give them their birthright share in the creative ratio. It would then simply be a project of collective, creative endeavour for us all.
This project has no end in sight. The cosmos will sequence the correlative contingency of the Universe, its primordial chaos, to each individual born and bred on the Terran concept of reality. It will be a matter of ideological training and a withholding of certain terrible temptations. Then, the absolute joy of Terror made into a group work so large that the Gods will, perhaps, become manifest after all, when we are all together, and the gold of time is epochal instead of merely theoretical.
This elevator pitch for a gnostico-heavenly reversal needs to sound convincing. Think of it as a sort of reverse Gigantomachy. We mortals bind together and create the Gods, who invade the land of the Giants and quell them, and then together we re-tell the original Myth, thereby disowning our role as aggressors, and preserving a kind of cosmic responsibility vis-à-vis the Big Other. It’s Meillassoux meets Maya-Sioux.
If we all grouped together by star sign, at least for our creative works, we would begin once again a tribal set of myths, characterizations, stories, sequences, colours. It would be an Idea that could take the World someplace other than a messy mediocrity. It might even be more appropriate, if we make peace with the 72 Earthly Fiends and 36 Heavenly Constellations, to group them by Chinese astrological animals as well. It is a syncretic and open concept, but it must remain gigantique for it to have the appropriate impact.
The concept will be named after a great and convulsive disorder in the mythology of the universe, and a humorous stitch across its forehead. Let us make it more of a Hebraic joke, if we can, since we got here first; for a nice bit of Jewish humour will sort out the annoying preachiness straight from the get-go. We must emphasize contingency, chance, the ludicrous, the madness, the completely daft attempt as a necessary precursor to some kind of order. This is A Modest Proposal on salvia.
As for the critics, they must be singled out as a kind of special “Levite” tribe. These are plucked from the fruits of each star sign and grouped together under the banner of the homo sacer. Critics can and must be killed regularly, neither as sacrifice nor as legal entities, but as outlaws. This will allow for impunity and impartiality, not only in their dispensing of opinions (which has never been the problem) but in their just punishment (which is precisely where they have gotten off scot-free in the past) — punishment if they deserve it — and they will.
It was along these lines that the gentle Al-Shouqran (The Blondie) jotted down the extractions from Rimbaud, Arcanum 17, Wu Cheng’en, and the Three Kingdoms of ants he had observed (a combat) for many weeks across the lawn of Oz. The Emerald City, where his notes were sent for processing, sent back a note saying that all contributions were to be submitted from “her” from now on, and no “he” would be accepted. And so she switched genders and kept the title.
Is this some kind of abdication? It is an abdication. It must be a surrender too. And, once the paperwork is in order, an oratory opportunity to condemn (preferably without trial à la Saint-Just) and a guillotining — of what? Of that pestilent “creativity”. It must be slaughtered once and for all. There is nothing that can be done, neither massive nor interesting, neither beautiful nor convulsive, without the many hands and the radio airwaves, the by all not by one of the participating segments, the representation — no — presentation of all the star signs, Tarot conjunctions, archaeological remnants, urns, shattered statuettes, archefossils, tender buttons, Great Danes and loving anti-parents. All and all, the other all and the further all, the last and most complete all with Osiris and Isis as final signing authority. Is that a fair enough exchange for your creativity, Stephane? Yvon? Gert? Hepner? Jarnot?
We came to a conclusion and signed it at a conference held on the moony crater of a secret location. We had our antennae set up to record albums from space, broadcast across long stretches to accompany the light show. In the meantime, our petty star-designs won out more or less unchanged (to appease the traditionalists) but the committee still voted that explicit reference be made to Egalitarian Politics, Automatic Writing and the standing authority of Objective Chance (until further notice from the Sciences), this time as a direct encouragement to André Breton, who thereafter offered his unconditional support.
And so the hieroglyphs were incised; the rock was launched. A pyramid was built, and placed in a commemorative (but still entirely secret) location. A twin pyramid was then hewn and dropped into a less than obvious spot of the Ocean (hint, near Verne’s Atlantide). Finally, a Rosetta Stone was manufactured detailing all of the main texts, manifestos, the locations of the stellae and rock formations, the schemata of the tabernacles, the pyramids, the tablets etc. and this all left in a Museum, which has not yet been built further than its one room — the rest to be filled out as the deities progress in their twelve-tier work.
Long Live the Astrological Revolution! Pernicious authors will be devoured, Goya-like, by the Titans we will become. We have banded together, shed our civilization, transformed into the avatars of our House. We are loyal to the universal experience, and to the flavouring of our tribe. We are going to execute commands from the collective voices. The monotheists will serve as best practices for these particular business activities.
There was no peace, of course, no treaty, without photography. This wrapped up the collage into a singular evidence of a living manifesto, a single man, André Breton, growing in matter as he is deader, dear 50 year-old cadaver, and more spiteful of treachery. It is our hope that this spite, in its noble grandeur and calm stillness, be granted to the race of the humans, for all time and forever. Anything that can be done to achieve this, must be done. Any work that must be sold to facilitate this, must be sold. All said and done, this is the end of every poetic striving in its implicit history. What is major is the last part, always. Art must get there too.
Jason Abdelhadi is a librarian and aspiring surrealist medium (in the tradition of Crevel and Desnos) from Ottawa, Ontario. He forswears any and all talent and merely transcribes what is offered to him… His learning is comparable to that of Švankmajer’s Faustus: humanistic, edible, and entirely useless. He dedicates his every sleeping moment to the surrealist revolution in the hopes of a drastic future.