Friday, February 11, 2011

17. “got some cake some ice some FICO Scoring and Other Credit Issues if they weren’t so / snake bit”


In a disturbing turn of events -- and much to the disappointment of myself, my family, and the four-to-seven humans who think of themselves as my enemies --  I began to write poetry again, and from this was reminded of the strange euphoric feeling of when a song rises out of the throat, like how it does for birds.  After, there is a feeling that EVERYONE SHOULD PAY ATTENTION  and THAT SONG JUST ROSE OUT OF MY THROAT.

This song rising up out of the viscera is so natural that one needn’t have left Eden for it.  It is some adorable remnant of that time when humans had merely to open their mouths and the gods placed in these mouths lush little fruits.  Oh how we sang back our praises of the fruits of those loving gods. Poetry was nothing and everything then.

For this reason I can feel a little bit of a benevolent connection with the critic Micah Mattix who writes, in a conservative think-tank piece, On Form and Flarf,  that “what is needed is a return to the natural constraint of complex form.”

How the poem in the natural constraint of complex form is also like a human tail.

How the every constraint is complex form is natural and every occurring form also like nature like how nature is also a vestigial tail.

I will resist, through this entire review, a defense of our former labors in the google mines. But these labors were in every way “the new natural.”  That is, to cart, with either limousine / donkey / broken-back / copyandpaste the language from here to there, full of the hope and despair of every form of natural labor is also a natural form, and to only after learn that the “here to there” was the same place, and from google we came and to google we came back, as if it google was merely an extension of logos or dust, which it, like nature, also is.   


Let’s then, pretending the world is the world and always natural, apply the four causes to Rod Smith’s 2010 Song Cave chapbook, “What’s the Deal”:

1. how it is made up out of google, which is made up out of language, which is made up out of people, businesses, machines and corpses, bodies animate and barely so

2. how it is in the form not veering too far from google results but resembling, also, a poem in how it rises up in the morning out of the throat of a poet

3. how it was once affect and information and is now a chapbook and will someday, by a bear or future human, be discovered in a clay pot in a cave

4. how it has as its end  the celebration, I think, of vestigial subjectivity and the continuation of an overall project, undertaken by Smith and friends, to explode aesthetics (in the way a confetti cannon also explodes)


I hate the term COGNITIVE SURPLUS.  This is because I love the masses, and resent, in particular, those humans who consider the intellectual and creative activity of the mass human to be in excess (“unnatural”).  


I cannot, despite my loathing for the term “cognitive surplus,” ignore that humans think (and type) these things that Rod Smith has also typed to make this poem:

“What’s the deal with Sanka?"
“Where’s the regular guy?”

“I am interested in eVItamins.”

“I mean/ I saw a posting for a Sales Management Trainee / position with Combined Insurance it sd”

“I read your article about oil in Montana.”
“What’s da deal, etc.?”

“Bluewater Wind and Delmarva/ East Niagara County biosolids acccounts”

Rod Smith the poet is like Dante here, deep in our regular purgatorio.  He makes a vernacular and corporate-speak cantos out of this.

This is why I’ve coined the term “vestigial subjectivity.”  It is a little like cognitive surplus, but takes into account the naturalness of the words that rise up out of our throats and onto the internet.

Those who have everything, from what I can tell, have as little use for the record of  mass wonder, mass suffering, mass silliness as the human body does for a spleen.  And woe to those with one hand in a pocket of profit made from the free expression of the many and with the other hand wiping their wrinkled-up, human-hating nose. 

And yet, for those who have merely poetry, there is a "natural" art inherent in this kind of persistent wonder that seems always to be rising up out of the mass of us (we love). And that poetry is a natural expression of this, vestigial (even though), and that poetry should also (or always)  be made up of the whole of human material, rather than the shinier parts of it: 

“What’s the deal> ?”
“Power could be in the works, astute readers / Power could be in the works.”


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