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It's not that I want to say

May 16, 2017

 

It's not that I want to say that poetry is disconnected from having

something to say; it's just that everything I want to say eludes me. But if I

 

caught it I wouldn't want it and you wouldn't want it either. Maybe poetry

 

is what happens on the bus between wanting and having. I used to think it 

 

was what happened on the bus between oakland and berkeley. And it was, 

too, like violet texas in people voices, all kinda subtle transmission broke 

 

off by stops and bells, repercussive riding, mobile contact, slow symposium.

 

Now, even in the absence of my office, I still want to move and so I have 

to move but never get there in this whole extended region of not being

there, of stopping and saying not here, not here, and of that being, in the 

 

end, pretty much all I have to say. What I want to say is that having 

 

something to say is subordinate in the work of being true to the social life

 

in somebody else's sound and grammar, its placement in my head, my

 

placement in the collective head as it moves on down the line. The

 

itinerant ensemble arrangement of the 40, and sometimes of the 15, is

where I started studying how to live in poetry. I want to transfer study as a

practice of revision on the edge, where ethics and aesthetics are in parallel 

 

play. Some kind of homeless shift between reading and writing that

emerges in a set as our cut-up schedule, a willow's diverse list of things,

point to point restlessness, interlocking schemes of material breaks, the

 

constantly renewed syllabus of a new composers guild in the middle of

 

enjoying itself. What we come together to try to do starts to look like what

 

we do when we come together to enjoy ourselves, handing saying what we 

 

want for one another to one another in and out of words. 

 

 

Fred Moten

 

 

 

 

 

 

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