Aphorisms V

As a puzzle can have several logical solutions, so movie or a book, a system of statements and objects, can have several interpretations that ‘solve’ it satisfactorily.

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Remember – the artists you have heard about, whose names are on the lips of literary history, are for the most part those who have been promoted massively. That is the machinery of the canon.

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Types of poem – a story, an aphorism, an apology, a thank you, a celebration, a memory, a machine for – disturbing, reinforcing, calming – a cryptic object, a puzzle, an object of conspicuous reference, a song, a praise, a lament, a memorial, a riddle, a marker of occasion, a cry of – fear, love, undetermined – a conversation with – self, other, influence, nothing – a look into the void, an evoker of images, a vault, a tissue, an ice pack, a pet, a project, a cuddly toy, an aspirant object, a thing original, a thing thought original, a mantra, a thing, a sculpture, a picture, a cry of pain, a cry, a hand…

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Do you know any precious rhythms in those around you? Patterns that are unique to the person? Never repeated by anyone else, they define the moments of a life that have seen lonely practice; a laugh, an improvisation on guitar, a facial expression, a method of moving the conversation. Perhaps they move through us like memes, but we know them to embody our friends. Are the memes passing through us, or we through them? I know one set of improvisations, made by a loved one, which are so tied up with their personality that if they stopped, I would worry I had lost them.

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Nietzsche

Man stands against the boiling ocean of the possible
silhouetted by a setting sun – striding
out into the deep to be destroyed.
He could not keep the truth without dissolving:
a lone skeleton falls apart in the tides
and – drawn to the depths of darkness – this
pile of white bones dances down – into the abyss.
But not this man, no, this man keeps
to bed clutching scribe’s accoutrements
projecting dense defiance –
he poeticises wildly in the throes of music
waxing prophetic on the coming task of men
struggling in pain to focus, but he knows.
He just can’t seem to formulate
the premises in his prose.
Squinting in his nest, his moustache moist,
and murmering
about the grand transcendence of the dark,
his mother brings him tea – his rough blanket
covered in yesterdays crumbs and ink accidents,
warms his knees – the will to digestion crowing.
He takes his meagre meal, curses her and even
As she makes matrimonial suggestions,
ressentiment quickens his breathing.
‘Woman is weak’ – he spits his damp crumbs
glaring at the matronly sign and signal
of his own pathetic nature – he turns aside
back to constant scribbling – by which he’ll teach
the world its wholly meagre worth in silence:
embalming modern insights in his head
with half-learned scraps of Darwin from the papers,
he will tread alone into the deep –
and this destiny has said.
He has no one to go with him, not a single friend.
And rather than put this down
to his unpleasant selfish manner
(a reason that never occurred to him)
he sees his path and hammer
as the wind’s lonely self-justifying answer to the void.