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(no subject) [Sep. 21st, 2006|11:54 pm]
Deserve is a word we use to describe a causality we approve of, and which nature is not always quick to furnish.
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Portrait of a Lawyer as a Young Man [Sep. 21st, 2006|09:53 pm]
Excerpt from Portrait of a Lawyer as a Young Man:

"I feel as if I have gone through some dark confusion and when I came out on the other side, I was in a completely different movie, with a different plot and presumably a different ending."

She took a dramatically understated sip of water and responded, "Who said something to that effect, was it Proust? Although I suppose it can't be an uncommon sentiment, if that makes any sense."

"Right, but what to do, with the past seeming so insurmountable chasmish?"

"Can't you just say you've changed, like most people do?"

And in a laugh, simultaneously self-effacing and condescending, he muttered, "that's the thing, there's not the usual continuity. Everything changes, and we can keep an eye on them for the most part, yet the things which we should keep the closest tabs on, seem invisible magic to us, like the small changes that lead to cancer."

"Well, nobody said you had to take the LSAT."

"Right, and I listened."
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(no subject) [Sep. 20th, 2006|12:20 pm]
which doesn't sound very sophisticated, but it is true. and sophistication really is just a way of making the truth sound more true (by knowing how to lie if necessary). and no i don't mean in the sense that a book saved me from the burning raft on which i'm stranded. rather i learned that i didn't have to experience everything just to understand one thing. the books could do that for me. and of course the sense of the world we're born into would play its role. i mean cavemen didn't have to reinvent the wheel because they invented it. for a while that purity astounded me. but then again, they also had the mercy of dying youngly. which perhaps is the only grace which sustained that effort. i mean then you can not have come back with enough non-answers to start to thinking, maybe one's not coming. too soon to tell and then you check out. and the question doesn't start to wear on you. and you aren't forced to face your hope, the hope you and i also have, that things will be different in the world in a bit, or that your experience of it will be different, if there's a difference. the hope you read books to play with.
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green fields grow [Sep. 19th, 2006|01:13 pm]
I. For the guards the ultimate point was approached obliquely.

Never so for the victim. They were blindfolded and knew they would blind on thereafter. What was a simple strip of cloth for the guards was the sudden loss of direction, the sudden ascendancy of dank smells and the baser qualifications for life. Lying down all day alone, and gaining nuances where pain had once seemed a square object one could fumble around with still distinct fingers. But now it became them.

But for those under Duch, it was the momentary visit to a cell, the rattle of the leg bars, the yelling of some phrase with pro-wrestling like blinders on, internal consistency. For not being blindfolded, it was the guards with the tunnel vision and the beaten whose vision expanded into infinite new shades of blackness, to diminishing returns where one must wait.

Each day was built on its itemized tasks.
Each body part and each drubbing,
an item to be matched
to a directive to be matched
to a reason to be matched
to a dream
that was commonly shared,
but that the traitors
who now refused to take nobly
their starvation and self-shitting,
forgot with only the first blow of the truncheon.
So, with a team, each of course a little more committed than you are, the manipulating of body parts like symbols, keys on a block print typewriter.
A name entered.
Class enemy.
The Angkor does not arrest
any but enemies.
To keep you is no benefit,
to destroy you no loss.

People need not be involved almost. Like an execution’s dry run. A rehearsal for the future when we will all be dead to each other and yet still moving about, saying things like passwords, open portals from the metaphysical to the purely physical, eliciting a chosen brutality, that was previously elicited and so on.

II. In these vacuums which nature abhors, paranoia, and unpredictably are everyone’s propaganda, for all are on the gunner’s side when the inmates are running the asylum and the only thing keeping you from being an inmate is your willingness to make others so.

There was a disgusting purity to the early war crimes of this century. A mission statement, a goal. But those were shown failing, and pathetic. And what remained in little cinders was the fervor.

Murder becomes the only grand narrative. Kill enough and meaning will arise, and you will rise on the back of the meanings, and they will do your bidding.

All but the killing was kept from the world. Only it recorded. Reasons left only cryptic, like borrowed hieroglyphics. Words like class, enemy. Words that excused the high and mighty, so would them as well.

They were liberated from the condescension but not the excesses and bureaucracy of the French. Imagine robispierre before the tribunal. Imagine his weighty impassions to the vitalizing power of blood. Imagine forcing him to leave the madness and return to his former self, to return to the masses which make decisions from a position that does not foresee ever being raised and degraded to the level of a tyrant.

So the Paris students, Khieu Samphan and Hou Yuon and Pol Pot and Ieng Sary studied and saw the futility of intellect. And inside the void dug hard so all could be soft, and remixed by Marx and Camus they saw something that could be filled by blood. And didn’t know that beseiged Paris was too tired just then to be taken seriously. Delirious from near conquest, delirious from the failure of words to do anything but negotiably record what had happened, what was still happening.

But in a world of little passion plays, something is terrible and beautiful about the world turning on the yoked back of peasants, where all are peasants. Somebody, though has to put the yoke there of course.

Who better than a law professor, Khieu Samphan, at Phnom Penh University, to understand that his humiliations were the people’s. that his redress was theirs. So when he was stripped naked, beaten and photographed as an enemy of state by the current vote winner where guns are votes, Sihanouk, who denounced the leftists he called the Khmer Rouge, (showing again how an insult becomes a title in victory) he had an idea of how others could attain the purity of thought he had attained then, near, in death.

And strange enemies make strange bedfellows and familiar bedfellows make familiar enemies, and so the prince backed a winner, and never really knew what to expect anyways, but to expect something. Some praise, some blame, all damning, in the way it’s all damning. How could the world care? They were a back eddy bomb site for the U.S. who was dirtying, as the century required, its own hands, and the french called one of their factions GRUNK. Just a comic book collection, with some valuable pieces, and some sad, sad turns. And once America suspended aid, people were willing and then less willing, and then forced, and then resigned to die for the privilege of saying “i told you so”.

And those who were, were fighting alongside to save a benign prince, not to save themselves in fire. But history records motivations only to guess them away.

And this time around the farmers would be the proletarian, and all the label meant in its theoretical punch and judy way, minus any need for economics. Fill your empty stomachs with only theory, and all theories are then starving you.

III. And they started by allowing nothing. No matter what was the wrong thing to do then, it was not being done. A new people. And how do you make people truly new? What hasn’t been done to them? What must be done to accomplish it?

So they were sent away to be protected from the bombings. Sent away from the impersonal dresdens, made easier if a friend shows you out. We must all be in the same mess, no exceptions. If you are a blight, you must disappear. So that eventually it is all smooth, and productive, a ball of humans, a fist. Not being allowed anything else, we will retreat into power by becoming a mass.

Three tons of rice a hectare or else we will feed yourself to yourself. There is no such thing as family. only Workers (isn't this true). Once they see, they’ll see how much easier the job is then. Engineer learn how to farm, teacher learn to farm. Farmer learn to farm. Learn hunger to learn.

And so things went on outside of S-21 bleakly. Lucky enough to avoid the random attention of those trying to win favor and, maybe for a while, feeling some personal stake in this killing or that. Starving though. In prison the treatment was not instant death of being taken right there for stealing a potato and clubbed to death. There had to be something more horrible waiting, to really inspire awe. Something hidden and so not readily available to the starving who were weighing the risks.

IV. But inside, again the guards and the victims. 12-13, 22-23 year old male guards. Old, child, woman, friend enemies. Shows the depravity of the enemy, is all. We know we ask much trust of you, but yours is the future. And as each day passed, just a bit more asked. No more farming, now gate duty, now what would you do without such a schedule? And so a doctor comes in and uses ointment on a back that’s spitting blood, so it can be flayed again. Not his department.

And for days some prisoner who is found useful enough to stay alive, taken out of the death sentence commuted briefly to pain in S-21, looks at the guards and sees they joke and smile like him,
But still something cannot be right here. Something. The man lies there all day, half paralyzed and blind,
Looking for something. People will write books on it, and vow never again,
But something more has to be said. He can’t speak out loud now,
When he’s closest to it. Can he blame them? He has to.
if we don’t keep in mind some too bright next day, after the hunger when the food sits uncomfortably in a shrunken stomach, if we don’t keep somewhere in our minds that day when our enemies become our victims, how can there be anything but horror. No forgiveness but grass, growing slowly, and forgetting its growth in blood.

And the truck pulls up to Choeung Ek at night in a demons hour, or day at lunch, and they’re unloaded and told they’re going home, and the guards aren’t snickering, but parking meter reader serious,
And they’re lined up in front of a ditch and clubbed then throat slashed. And some guards who had previously only driven are asked to help. And as the symbols empty and are just bodies. And as the guards feel for a moment empty of the task that had filled them with each new one dispatched - at that moment in the fields, two bodies in grass, is the closest the guards and the victims will ever be, the last thing common enough to be shared. Forgiveness then feels like a lie.

And those who rebuild after this all, what can they hope for? Hope that forevermore we are all indoctrinated in how dumb the difference between that ditch and that club is, was? Hope that somehow the human heart inculcates itself from putting on that uniform for one more day? That all those so inclined would die out? How can this be? They are the survivors. The others are dead.
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cold winding assignment 9 coming down chicago line [Sep. 19th, 2006|11:53 am]
standing again at the docks,
like somebody's father or mother before you.
with the same energy of those who stood there before,
but perhaps not those who built the dock - as that's for working,
not standing.

and the rain falls and rises like each quantum sea monkey
is playing frisbee with its own body,
about a medium it does not discern.

and sleeting moves in a rhythm like a band playing in some cafe
near the docks
that you entered into,
but that does not acknowledge your having entered.
and the coffee steam passes the small coolness that the rain droplets
have become on your face,
and not the sweatshirt hood you forgot in the car because you forgot the rain.
and the thought is washed down in a hot slinky,
and a coffee taste like rising dust,
as you swallow. the warmth
becomes a small center in you,
a small mythology walled away from the driving rains,
the other world, the map at its corners,
which is read into the minutes as a necessary opposite,
because the flood must always be in the future, and never now.
and they must be safe and warm, and so not otherwise.

and standing back out on the pier near a few fishermen,
who cast and swear against the wind,
and are returned time and time again,
by its promise -

the ocean suddenly seems as deep as it's supposed widely
to be. a gate on your way that you never noticed
until someone asked you why it's always closed.

and a wave interfered with by post of the docks,
spits impassively into the air
and sanguinely your face is traced
by wet mother fingers, when they seem careless
and cruelly devoid of you.

and it can't be undone until you are undone,
it just goes on.
the wind addressing the ocean
and you caught in it,
trying to explain to some small coastal town
inside of you,
that there is no such thing as a flood.
but they are too cold to listen very long,
and so are swept away, as you turn to go indoors.
and the wind gives a long one,
as if it was anything at all.

someday soon, you will not be thinking about the ocean,
until suddenly the sky rememories you
that you are diving into it, flood and all.
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a really really permanent injunction [Aug. 23rd, 2006|12:48 pm]
While it would perhaps draw a clearer line as to the standards and practices the AMA expects from its physicians if the AMA were to forbid doctors to in any way involve themselves with capital punishment, it would perhaps prevent doctors from dispensing with pallative care.

i don't know how many of you feel about the death penalty. i should write on it further. i am largely against it. what i can say with all certainty, however, is that after reading some of the execution bloopers that have occurred over the years, i was a bit disturbed with the procedures currently in place.
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(no subject) [Aug. 23rd, 2006|12:48 pm]
a note to all lapsed catholics

don't overdo it. some guilt is worth feeling.
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Wayne and Eastwood LLC [Aug. 23rd, 2006|12:47 pm]
In remedies class today we read a case about a worker who was seeking a permanent injunction against his employee mandating that the employee segregate the smoking and non-smoking employees. This was in 1982, mind you, when attitudes about the dark art of smoking were a bit different. The options the boss gave the worker, prior to the worker feeling legal actions was necessary, however, were nothing short of hilarious. The worker was told he could either a.) Wear a respirator and continue working where he did, or b.) Move to the computer room and work there. Not so bad right? Except the move to the computer room involved a 1800 dollars a month paycut. I'm surprised the boss didn't give the guy the option of bending over and taking a reaming right there in front of all the other employees. In fairness the man did work for John Wayne and Clint Eastwood, I joke to an accquaintance.

Which got me thinking, how awesome would that firm be? John Wayne staggers in and proceeds to backhand his secretary for scheduling that 930 appointment and then pisses on the wall. I'll piss anywhere I want he says. Clint Eastwood is feeding his horse in the office supply room. It'd be awesome.
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assignment 5 [Aug. 22nd, 2006|03:10 pm]
Well first off, I only did the assignment today and just now. as for the dissecting the black box functioning of my writing, well i'm not sure how it works. phrases come to me. as do scenarios. not always together, although i suppose a phrase is a scenario generally. i don't believe sounds and shapes can be completely separated from their most associated meaning into a pure sensation. that said, the writing to keep is the stuff you wake up thinking about and have to write down before you go back to bed usually. of course with a little work you can also slowly draft and revise your way to something similar.

as for what influences it, well everything i suppose. there's no such thing as the writer in the abstract. it's just another form of communication i suppose. you take in the data, find the signal in it, and then communicate it back out with your amendments. sometimes it's only when we attempt to reconstitute the data and send it back out that we come to understand what signal we took in to begin with.

at a broader level, i suppose writing is just another input output we go through each day like eating and defecating. probably not as important though.

that said lately my anxiety has been informing my writing...as well as whatever topics are superficially on my mind. one provides the theme and the other largely provides the means of expressing the theme.

lately i've been thinking back to a younger time when i thought there was some way to unravel all of my neuroses and completely understand myself, and so was committed to said pursuit. then i gave up on it, and acquired more layers of confusion via debauchery and carelessness. now it seems my first attempts, while always having no chance of total success, were at least a more powerful and sustainable existence. writing has been a large part of this for me. analysis. getting it on paper. i think it's what all artists are doing whether they admit it or not. they can posit some paradigm shifting cultural theory, but really it's about getting thoughts out of their heads and into others. it's more about reaching out than condescending with tablets and commandments. just some quick thoughts on my process anyways.

this is because i liked your old english poem. i don't know old english though, so i made some up.


Song of the Gledge

Strang a' langau
Strod aul Burk
Abod kilead aul n’weep.
Wha strang a shirk’d
Tha cost a steep.
Drang o’ uurongau
Kilead abod aul strang.
Mose fole a liff
Wha strang a luff,
Tha lady eyes aul blue.
Strole far n’cast a’ slep
Aul blue tha lady eyes.
Strole far n’cast n’pace.
Burk, aul Burk, n’pace.

well this one was off the top of my head, but it could be developed into something i suppose. obviously the theme is appealing to me.


Middle classage:

Brightly colored VH1 turns off
And a black shriking white dot shush provides too frightful
A moment of silence.
The room is full of wooden ducks and tweed basket chairs
And the other room an untuned piano.

Going out later, for a trip, not flying anywhere
Driving. I’ll drink with my friends,
Until my intelligence is at a level appropriate to my station.
We’ll do something that will almost get us arrested.
And we’ll laugh about it after the hangovers tomorrow.
On the drive there, a pop song is on the radio
And it fills me.
Put in a cd, switch in another.
Maybe I’ll get tired of all these cds.
Only way to know for sure is to keep buying them.
There’s hope in buying more and never knowing,
Which one will be too much.

Got work tomorrow though. No time to sillify myself
Over this meaning or that. Not like that bum on the corner,
Who has his mind or nothing, and usually neither.
Bums are good for a joke.

When I get there my friends all great me,
Their faces all a little bit gaunt and all a little bit fat.

and this poem has some lines i like and is on a topic it's hard for me to write well about just yet as i haven't yet formulated my entire argument on it, but it's also a topic that should be written about.


Capital idea.

“Excessive bail shall not be required”

Dead man walking,
Same as it was, more decorum now than ever.
State power
Nowhere else to put them.
Jougs maybe.
Cruel used to have a less onerous meaning. Just meant hard.
Flesh becomes the only medium,
At a certain point of disagreement right?
Sitting simply, with fewer distractions,
They get a chance few ever do.
Knowing it. Being told it’s worth something.
If you were one of the innocents, you’ve given
Up on convincing anyone a long time ago –
You look the part
Convince yourself.
Still time to convince yourself even when the hood goes on.

At least put it on tv, ppv -
No no no at the mandatories. you can’t waive the 8th
It’s not there for you.
It’s for the rest of us.
Scares us feeling what you might have felt.
Looking at life go out like a dead bulb –

Above the left ear knotted, the drop
The legs, which had not been pinioned,
The arms extended pleadingly,

He regained consciousness and begged
To have the cap removed
And to make another speech.

This refused, and the drop fell again.

Seeing eye sockets emptied like bad buttons,
You could stick your fingers in them,
All you’d get is texture. bones snap
Like uncooperative legos.

- And so no son, you can’t waive the 8th –
We’d be embarrassed as children are
When their mother overscolds a classmate –
Fights a battle for them in overzealous love.
And love first frightens us then,
And we feel somehow a little culpable
Just for existing.

But we use thicker rope to prevent decapitation,
boil the rope to reduce elasticity,
We oil it to reduce friction,
And we place the knot over the carotid artery.

“evolving standards of decency…mark the progress
of a maturing society”

the contortions begin to lessen, and finally cease
and the whole mess, if there’s blood or defecation,
is cleaner for being done.

“nor excessive fines imposed”

the CO-s joke about it before and after.
That’s where gallows humor comes from.
They get attached sometimes too though.

Nobody on the squad wanted to be the one
Who hit Elisio Mares in the heart,
So they aimed away from the white cloth marking it.
So he bled to death cumulatively fatal wounds,
In 12 minutes.
What are 12 minutes, in the grand scheme?
What’s one wheel, one beam, arm or strap?
Who ends or what ends?

Who are these invisible? Big oops. All of them.
Not just a normal oops. They have to seem way out there.
Can’t appear too like someone we know. Better yet,
Can’t appear at all. Killer sentenced. Always the same
One that way. mitigations were for the death phase.
how close an eye do those 12 keep on it?

“nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted”

sodium penthathol, pancuranium bromide, potassium chloride.
A better mousetrap. A dentist’s chair. We’ve been taught to trust this.
Let’s get this over with. Yes yes, just steadying the machine.
Chemistry is more calming than physics.

Priest gives rites sometimes. Convicts love jesus.
Makes it seem like it can be worth something.
A spiritual math. Fill a hole with a hole. One less cost for a cost.

It’s what they’re fed. Last meal, you did good, be brave son.
Proud of you.

Maybe the last thought is that retribution is accomplished,
Some shining tomorrow will foam out of the convulsions.
No, the needle lacks that drama, and that promise.

or maybe, who cares?
maybe - my eyes are blue like the sky is blue
and all that separates them is this no good head.

Step into the room either way, the door closed forever,
Are we cut off or are they-
A sharp clean philosophy,
An inverted pascal’s wager –
Forget the aftermath or beforemath,
Do you believe in life enough
To kill even if there’s a chance
That it’s futile and pointless –

One big last statement and then pain that can’t be felt.

McCoy choked and heaved
Due to an incorrect mixture –

At midnight a short conference is held.
The newspapers report it the next day
Back a page.
It gets put down next to the cereal,
The banana peel, the war dead.
Nothing unusual about it,
About our lives, the victims' lives -
returning to distant, faceless wholeness.
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my love is [Aug. 15th, 2006|02:11 pm]
Your Love Situation
by Amberishjewel
Your Love Is...Gentle
During Lovemaking You Act...Like a volcano, hot & steamy
Your Partner Is...Your soulmate
Your Partner Has Said That You...Are their only love
Your Love is Summed Up In A Quote."Play is not for kids alone"
Quiz created with MemeGen!
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