Friday, April 22, 2011

why i am an anarchist

because i'm in such good company. anarchism is fluid, hard to pin down, resuscitated back to life only with each person who takes it on. this makes it politics spun in poetry. each human being creates their life, and we all therefore create civilization, and one day when we stop trying so hard to be slaves to an ideal we might become poets of each other instead of good soldiers to our masters, whoever we have decided they are. anarchism is the belief that all authority is a delusion, part of the dream, part of the sweat-blind struggle just to survive. anarchism is a belief in one's life apart from its trade value, as a thing belonging to a great mystery and not subject to strange human made rules. anarchism is a paradox, a lovely growing and dying spirit that exists everywhere and has not yet blossomed. some of my favorite people are anarchists, sometimes only for a couple of years, before they went back to being things:

EDWARD ABBEY: national park ranger, sayer of the following, “anarchism is founded on the observation that since few men are wise enough to rule themselves, even fewer are wise enough to rule others.” ed taught about compassion coexisting with violence, and violence killing compassion. above all, ed taught that if you move slow, the world gets a lot more real. some snort at the praise of nature, but one can only assume this is because they are jaded. ed demanded we walk rather than drive, because you are one kind of thing when you walk and another kind of thing when you drive, and no amount of rationalization is going to help you understand what it is to experience to live now, not then or when. i remember the happiest moment of my life was drinking water in the bush because i was alive in the way i was supposed to be, and most dead in the squalid urban environment of the subway going to work and wondering why i would live this nightmare at all. no one wants to live surrounded by the screech of machines and the death of concrete, unless you think you can't get a square meal without it. if you believe that, you're fucked.

NOAM CHOMSKY: old noam has done more to break up common hallucinations of democracy and the nature of disinformation than any individual in the 20th century. for the most important intellectual alive, its hard to find anyone who actually reads or admires him. most people groan when they hear his name, as if it were pedantic to say that you live in a sea of lies. probably because old noam pointed out that every person has a moral obligation to work for the common good and to get up off your ass and resist the people who run your life, most people hate him.

EMMA GOLDMAN: sweet ms. emma, may they always remember when you said "if i can't dance, i don't want to be part of your revolution" she was pretty badass, getting down and dirty with the kind of revolutionary war here in the west that most people were afraid of, even though they accept the violence of the state most of the time. she was a warrior in the old sense, and puts the soldier to shame for killing in the name of an evil cause.

JOHN LYDON (aka JOHNNY ROTTEN): only really great for a few years, somewhere between 1980 and 1990 he turned into a strange clownish parody of himself, johnny almost alone created an entire culture. johnny spent a year in a hospital at age seven for spinal meningitis and claimed to have lost the memory of his childhood when he returned to school. somehow this created in him a kind of vertigo in which the savage and unjust behavior of the people around him didn't make sense, had no narrative. as a consequence he became abrasive and rebellious towards a world of people who were not honest, about their ugliness, about their weakness, about their condition of servitude. dressing as offensively as possible, johnny created a culture of defiance from being told to act or submit in any way, not just to the tyranny of expectations, but the tyranny of the fear in yourself to be what you are on the outside what you know you are on the inside. be yourself, tear down the curtains, johnny said, in pure rage of being crushed in your insides. youthful rebellion made real, and not just a joke to laugh about when youre old and cynical. then he became old and cynical. oh well, up until 1980 or so he was a walking advertisement for revolution.

well, i could go on, maybe i will, someday. here are four good influences on your soul.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

the first lightnings of spring

where are the birds now at this time of night & storm?

canada is a place of forests, cut by ugly long lines across its middle and up its breasts, where ones with guns decide to rest. and us - the rest - to cling to the warmth of furnaces, and easy food, but out there in the Dark, a few hundred thousand square kilometers of wildernesses, for all the holes we dug in the flesh of mother earth, she will still shake us all off like a street dog shakes off flies, i guess.

the gods of winter and spring are behind me, out my window, fighting their last war of the year - may i see you clash again in the next, always, like the last million springs we spent together, when i was a flea, a tree, a sea, now a me. always i side with spring, always she wins against winter gods' jaws and claws. now they are swirling into each other, cold and warm, there in midnightchildhood blackbelliedclouds demonfaces there entwining of wind and rain, trees bend, pines raise their branches higher in honor and wild abandon, little monkeys conspire in little city hearts, i wonder how big a cloud is, i think they are bigger than many mountains, i think they are bigger than my city, and the white house not big at all. they found these ruins once before, at giza, karnak, mojeno-daro, ur, all over the world...

who knows how old the war is above me, lightning and wild thunder the limbs of winter gods and spring gods? more than a million years, i think, those souls that have been being born and dying, winter staggers in the dark alleys on my way home, winter smashes me to the ground, wild eyed and unknowing, lets the icy white run down its face - winter gods pull down darkness from the sky with arms longer than kite strings, pull down black bellied mourning clouds, bruise the air near my face - spring, sexual spring, stamen and pistol spring - she comes in gusts of living, she spins, she erupts, she writhes in the sky, breaks apart, the branches bow before her as she undulates out of their grip, the spring girl gods always trying to pull down whatever winter tried to bury, snow, life, mountains, skyscrapers, hatred and love, ah spring girls give birth again and again and again, and right now she is a dark wet pregnant mother, all feral and writing on the storm, driving back the winter like an animal, our death singer, our mother, drives him or kills him or otherwise makes it possible for her children to wander aimlessly in a wilderness of skies.