Escapism

by

Fifth Estate # 377, March 2008

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Swear fealty to the dark leprechaunism of revenge

Social Camouflage

Fabulous Insularity

become a lump of sensual actuality in the thin gruel of

Spectacular Electromagnetism

Set your basement afloat.

Behind the iron curtain of sheer boredom

with Civilization as we know it psychic

discoveries proliferate & angelic sensations

are a dime a dozen.

like a dirigible sleepy with nitrous oxide

finally so attenuated it can trance us

with streaming sensations of thinking we remember

what it was.

What if every perversion were legalized except yours? every drug decriminalized except the very one you need to attain enlightenment? all politics permitted saving only the perfidious & universally despised credo you happen to adhere to?

The Escapist Militia practises reenactments

costumed complete with powdered wigs

of greet moments in the history of haute cuisine

a fantasia of negation.

* * *

Escapism flies under the radar of the consumerist panopticon with a critique of reality honed by decades of serious drug use & evasive shillyshallying.

Obsessions are veritable Galapagoses of Mutuality & elegant boredom.

Renounce the emptiness of vacations for the pleroma of permanent unemployment — the vaguely impenetrable isles of the blest.

Even short thunder showers threaten power authority with free electricity that swells up the head like a grape & makes it blush.

Rain is a coast & briefly we’re degenerate wreckers eager to pilfer whatever flotsam washes up on our distant shore.

Those who huff these alien spores drift back in time & temporarily indwell the bodies of long gone smokers who in turn have wafted off to even earlier dates & remoter climes ad perhaps infinitum. In 1911 these devotees of extraterrestrial mycofumation are disguised as opium addicts in Fu Manchu’s Limehouse den beneath the Thames. Off I go for one gilded soporific transmigratory augenblik & while I’m vacant who knows what nostalgist from the 23rd century passes thru my empty brain.

Revolutionary Escapist will prevail thru sheer inertia when millions too bored & sluggish to sustain the vibratory level of incessant Progress slump toward the portholes like so many rats, clamber down the ropes & scuttle off into the conceptual hinterlands on a sauve-qui-peut basis in search of some consolatory obsession.

What we love must be incomplete. We must ruin ourselves for it financially & morally like the sunken wreck of a Spanish treasure galleon even tho it’s always free in every sense of the word including loose unattached lost errant careless unformed & lewd.

Our Militia utilize aimless wandering or random walk to neutralize surveillance & stymie all statistical analyses of strategic supply, each dressed in the military motley of some different & unheard-of hopeless lost cause.

Tropacalismo

Orientalismo

Nostalgismo

Horizontalismo

… each with its favorite bistro.

Aimless wandering turns in on itself & devolves into a tableau

vivante of sentimental anniversaries & badly printed newsletters

a college so invisible as to seem diaphanous

the eternal avant-garde & everlasting gospel

so secret some of its members don’t even

know they’re in it.

A shimmering glow of Diireresque melancholia

suffuses the twilite of Kapital. Snow & night

seem thicker, more radiant.

So sue me. And go to yr grave with regrets

for the winged words you wasted.

* * *

Exile is the opposite of Escape. Sunlight

deprivation syndrome is no joke.

Is. Is. Is. The tyranny of the intransitive.

If I remember correctly it was during Shay’s Rebellion certain backwoods sages propounded the doctrine that parts of Massachusetts & Vermont had reverted to the primordial condition of Nature, therefore free to construct their sovereignty ex nihilo or perhaps even remain in that Hyperborean moment of perfect liberty forever or until someone finally dragged them back.

Aubrey Beardsley in suburban New Jersey

in 1957 thinks he’s trapped in the

fat boy like Felix the Cat in a bottle

of india ink– superhero stuck

in his secret identity scared to jump.

But he jumps. Thank god for LSD.

The whole gang has been reincarnated.

Few days are so pleasurable as those

on which one quits a job. Crime pays.

Slowly slowly one makes up for having

died so young last time.

How To Start Your Own Country.

Is it possible to remember a smell

or is the smell itself the memory?

If only our manifestoes

could attain the rhetorical felicity of

The Acme Catalogue of Heirloom Roses.

As in the French Assembly

if you’re reactionary enough you suddenly

find yourself on the Left so also

with roses. Talk about yr

poesie trouvee . If only!

Political parties would be classified by scent.

I see them as bombs

slow deep silk mnemonic bombs.

* * *

Attar of cordite at the altar of contrition for lukewarmness

myrrh for hesitations benzoin of strangled desires & incorrect regrets

incense that explodes knocks over the tapers & shreds the ikebana

gleeful joss for all the little devils who’ll become our Castenedan allies

the immortal part the mumia of mummies like Boris Karloff

wafted aloft on a cloud of balsam.

If smells have color this one’s tinged with back to school melancholia like a vast field of superannuated sunflowers down to a riverbank where no one is swimming. I’d call it nostalgic but any smell is nostalgic, wallpaper in a room where you once recovered from some disease.

Selfish hallucinations damp paperbacks

the luxury of a perfect excuse

for a day in the bag in the tent
contemplating the sensitive chaos of

dripping thinking how sorry we’ll be

when it stops & the trail opens again

& we’ll have to hike back down to catch up

on all the dryness we missed.

* * *

We want to quit our lousy jobs in autumn even if we’re self employed

& camp out in apple orchards amongst the windfalls like drunken cows

* * *

Unfortunately utopia was all too affordable

a politics that begins at my door & ends only

in floods of tears
our only innovation being to admit defeat &

plan the retreat into some no-go Chernobyl;

where we can become the monsters we are.

Spirit possession would be the ultimate vacation

ridden by the Orisha like a divine

Jekyll/Hyde or Heckle/Jeckle, the twin

ravens of Odin, knower of runes & ruins

Escapism believes that “life is elsewhere”

but accessible. An oasis of orgone.

Temporary Ruins.

Eccentrics are successful escapists. They have diamond bodies. I knew one who lived in 1911, including wingtip collars & a player piano, but suddenly he lost his adamantine purity of intention, realized he was crazy & rejoined the modern world. A dervish once told me “They call us escapists–but if you’re being chased by a tiger & have no gun Escapism makes perfect sense.”

Fuckin’ John Muir & John Burroughs ‘ld be doing 7-to-40 in Club Fed as ecoterrorists if they were above room temperature, as Tuli says, & still with us. “Protected wilderness” may be an Orwellian oxymoron but where else is there left to escape to but state parks?

The rich have already escaped

to all the islands & we must

re-define insularity perhaps as

an oasis of ruin or failure

obsessive & remote

we await the withdrawal of Heaven’s

Mandate from the fabric of

reality itself. Scholars stones spontaneous

conversation driving home drunk in

moonlight calligraphy: escapist as resistance.

* * *

Nothing to lose but yr cyber roles

in the ballet mechanique of the dominant paradigm

The International Horizontalist Society

Oblomov in Kathmandu

The League for Endarkenment

O [your name here] the highest form of Escapist Lit

blurs the border between Shiraz & now.

Voluntary identity politics. Misidentity politics.

Potential possession by ancient voices

prophesying the usual punch-up.

Patron saint Houdini. We savor the effluvium of your ectoplasm.

Please evade “maturity,” the last two minutes before death.

* * *

A post post colonialism in which rare & delicate languages fail to go extinct but instead proliferate with the mutability of Darwin’s Finches. Survival of the Happiest. Doctrine of continual creation according to the hieromathematology of the otherwise inexplicable

beauty of physical things.

Time itself is lunar. Itswells. It diminishes. Space is solar. Electricity doesn’t conquer darkness — it erases stars.: We’ve had socialist plus electricity, now let’s try, it with endarkenment. Anarcho-noctambulism. Black reaction back to prelapsarian hyperboreanism & nutritive chaos. Night equals right. Crushed velvet. Pre-industrial musk. Only slaves could conceive of heaven as unrelieved daylight. Escapism’s paradise lies in the shadows of the moon.

* * *

Sailing to an island

might as well be science fiction

ions ozone iodine delight

dappled light bewilders but
sharpens appetite. Raoul Dufy, meet

Winslow Homer. Pascal would’ve bet on

Neptune — a brine-drunk existentialist seduced by Germanic nudism.

All islands are Celtic. One is saintly.
One drinks a lot

because so little is actually at stake

in these pro-tem clandestine eutopias.

* * *

Neo-Exoticism decides not to apologize for its gaze of yearning toward alterity because ultimately uniformity however progressive numbs the Imagination & other erogenous zones with the neo Brutalitarian novocaine of pseudo choice — any color so long as it’s black said Ford the Fordist, Hitler’s guru — because all the colors of the spectrum are secretly black: the universal mourning of the 19th century for the Future it had allowed itself to picture in the technopathocratic subconscious seizure of its greed for universal empire — the Empire of the Same in 600 attractive designer shades.

Water is an undinic realm akin to sleep; it cuts us off from adult supervision. Buried treasure symbolizes the fact that we’re alone together — an alchemical situation — a game with rules as strict as love or necromancy.

The Junkyard of History turns out

to be an OK vacation destination

a sort of Guadalajara for retired

radicals — low rents lots of sunshine.

Surely Hermes is patron of garbage

as secret form of writing.

The Dump is our power spot

its mephitic memorial gasses

source or our philosophic fire.

A regime based on veridical dreams

with a Constitution written as

a symphony without words

across transparent borders

with a transparent flag indistinguishable

from the wind that waves it.

PLW thanks Sigrid Sandstrom, Minister of Culture of the Transparent Republic of Antillia, who designed the Transparent flag, and Robert Kelly, the Logothete of Antillia.

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