Wednesday, February 8, 2017

There is a Law, there is an Arm, there is a Hand!

There are species of people: monkeys, penguins, rabbits, cats, wolves, anteaters, pandas, dung beetles... - ah, dung beetles are lovely! They remind me of Sisyphus with their painstaking labor just rolling shit and trying to push it just a little further...

Anyway, there are as many species as the number of people, and one person is already many species, we can't enumerate them all. So a more fundamental categorization would be, for me, poets and others whatever their species may be. Poets do not necessarily write poetry though. Actually it is something rare for someone to be a poet and to write poetry at the same time. I have a poet friend who has never really written poetry and works in a bottling factory, for example. Poets are the ones starting from breaks, cracks, who see and feel the constant shifting of planes of existence, who kind of surf on the waves of existence without really belonging to any of these, without settling down, not really taking anything seriously enough to plant roots because they know, feel that it's all going to end. The end is always already happening. Poets signal that but always cheerfully because, really, there is nothing else to do in the face of such constant change and destruction than to laugh, and maybe to create more signs to be found by others to guide them in turn, to create their own signs...

So is Leonard Cohen, and he is one of the rare poets who also wrote poetry. Someone said that he was the last anti-hero and it made me feel sick to my stomach. This understanding, for me, is as wrong and warped as it can be. What is an anti-hero, anyway? Is he a loser? Is he someone that stands in the way of the hero? Is he aware that he is an anti-hero? Is his opposition a conscious effort? Or is he just an asshole, destroying things without building anything? The idea of anti-hero never really made sense to me but I feel the tastelessness of it even for the very fact that it assumes a plane where heroes and anti-heroes reside. Settled in there comfortably. Sure, Leonard might have passed from there, might have produced signs pointing there but that would be all. He would be just passing by...

Anyway, the day he died, I was actually reaching for Back to Methuselah, a book of Bernard Shaw, to help me once more with, well, everything. There are a certain number of things I constantly go back to read, to feel. That means these things still have something to offer, they are still producing signs for me, or for the Hand to grope to make its way in the world.

So I reached for Bernard Shaw for him to heal my belief in the world which is basically a belief in a Hand. In this funny and smart book, two guys talk about how the lifespan of humans should be increased to create a better civilization and how this is actually possible if only people wanted, desired, felt the need to live longer. It's basically an argument for creative evolution. But what is funny is that both of these men who argue for this die while a guy who was there totally coincidentally continues to live as we see in the next scene set 150 years later. He didn't understand what happened to him when he just wasn't dying when it was reasonably his time. So beautiful and funny.

What this entails for me is that there is this force, these forces, just creating things, paving different roads and this has nothing to do with knowing or understanding or being conscious. Unconscious workings of life...guided by desire...

There is a Law, there is an Arm, there is a Hand.

In a very different way though.

Sometimes I do outrageous things, things that don't make sense at all at that time, things that are not functional, even counter-intuitive for my survival, things that will most probably crash me, cause me to dissolve...

When I do these things I feel like I am plotting against myself and I feel a Hand. Not the Law or the Arm though. I wonder about them, wonder if they exist but I know there is definitely a Hand there, very much palpable. So I pass to the side of paranoia from the usual schizophrenic plane I dwell in but I do so to wonder about what's happening, to follow where this Hand is trying to take me. That paranoia, it's not like there is some grand scheme. Now Werner Herzog talks in his enchanting way that says even more than his words: "The universe is indifferent to our constructions of grands schemes" - of course it is, Werner... But we are not indifferent. Werner, sure, is not indifferent. Life is not indifferent. For there to be life, there must be a reaching out to light, water, food... There must be an interest for light and water and minerals etc. for a plant to grow, for instance. Or there must be a pathetic Grizzly Man for Werner to make a film on.

So when I do these outrageous things I do them happily, really. Not even happily but unconsciously. I don't decide, I just reach out. And by now I learned that even though nothing makes sense at that point in time, a time will come for me to feed on the very thing that destroyed me: to make sense. Because I had to reach out to that thing to make the very transformation which is the wonder of making sense.

So... there is a Hand, for sure in these lyrics for me:
"I left everybody but I never went straight, I don't claim to be guilty but I do understand. [...] Now my heart's like a blister from doing what I do. [...] I'm going to miss you forever tho' it's not what I planned. [...] Now the deal has been dirty since dirty began. I'm not asking for mercy, not from the man. You just don't ask for mercy while you're still on the stand."

Sure, these lyrics may be talking about something else entirely. But I don't care. And such is the beauty of the lyrics as well: they give off signals beyond themselves. It's not important that we are not on the same page with the lyrics. What's important is that these lyrics have opened some pages before me, whatever those may be.

I don't have a will to know what they really mean... I have a will to dance and to witness the creation of new connections guided by the rhythm of that Hand. I am sure there will emerge something to enlarge my playground, at the very least.

One must dance to the rhythm of all those invisible but forceful Hands...

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