Love poem #4

Darling?

I was going to save this till after we were married but

our entire relationship is based on a lie.

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Poems

1. Tell me the difference between thinking and doing

Mine be the thinkers
mourners, mourning the dead
all the dead and

everything that has ever been
throughout the universe
since the beginning of time.

We mourn like monks
we mourn so hard
we are phobic of the living

2. The human body

The body is strange
have you ever noticed?
there is water coming out of it all over the place
nose, mouth, sex, eyes, skin
myself leaving myself behind for you to find

When I think of you, sometimes
water fills my eyes and rolls down my cheeks
then my mouth becomes dry
and I must pour water in
until I am filled

3. Wet and dry

I am sorting out the words into wet and dry
like ‘salt’, a dry word
Salt, and ‘hate’.
‘Love’ is a wet word
like ‘tomato’
‘tongue’
and ‘saline’.

Red pill, redemption

“Claude Lanzmann, the director of the epic documentary film Shoah…argues that his own approach to recording the experience of survivors—through direct testimony—is the only legitimate method, and that art and imagination can have no part in such an endeavor.” (The Paris Review)

The wounds of horror flew deep into the flesh. But art cannot be still, so it lends itself an air of skepticism in the face of yearning for redemption, of yearning for an imagined reason untainted by power, for the restoration of beauty into the world – as Leo Bersani put it, “Art as a correction for life.” Redeemed from our actions, our thoughts, our own death, even. Some, including visual artists such as Jean Debuffet, found these dogmatic notions disgusting, rejecting the very constructs that create such a wonderland: “I believe very much in the values of savagery,” he said, “Instinct, passion, mood, violence, madness.”

No. Humanity had hoisted itself upon a cross. Humanity as it was known had suffered, then died. Resurrection would come later (redemption, perhaps never) out of the bones of the soil, turned anew. The psychology of practice, as much as the concession of impotence, would become central to everything that followed it.

Paul Celan

The Vale of Soul-Making

I know,
I know and you know, we knew,
we did not know, we
were there, after all, and not there
and at times when
only the void stood between us we got
all the way to each other

— Paul Celan , from “Soviel Gestirne” (So Many Constellations), Selected Poems and Prose of Paul Celan. (W. W. Norton & Company; Reprint edition December 17, 2001)

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