Academic journal article Chicago Review

MODEST WITNESS (for the Abolition of the University)

Academic journal article Chicago Review

MODEST WITNESS (for the Abolition of the University)

Article excerpt

it is that horror of naming things that nevertheless says,

speak into my ear. old familiar familiar, animal-guide

to this disscent-now, it speaks of, and is,

a lonely, sluggish, potent, rotting monolith

in which those who work and learn give up

that future in the present for time to be joyfully wasted

on things that do not and are not matter, which should be

the condition and expectation of all consciousness-

the florid shapes that write themselves in white

on our swollen eyes, great penumbra blooms,

give forth a modest witness far more obscure

and wanting than the most symbolical star.

someday perhaps (you know i hate that word in essays)

one of us will think of a poem we read together

and it will make that action of a moment, drawn dry

of all else a little more, what? like a made thing?

or else, for something more, we must be struck

into a more antic thought, to prevent the loss

that terrible endless growth would be, the spasm of the tentacle,

the bright ignominy of abstraction, the gutteral frankness of revolt-

that the most beautiful thing it can be is the site

of its own passing into delirious, psychedelic obsolescence

because what it offers is the pharmakon-or-else,

is the conviction of the miserable heart of each honest fellow. …

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