THE M.A.G. SPECIAL EDITION :: JIM LEFTWICH ::


Give Up


let it go. somewhere between the phoneme and the morpheme an aggregate of
sounds potentially exploding. from sound through sense inevitably so let's
say intentionally for sake of argument to the blank page read as everything
we know. it looks like an end so it's a good place to start. it looks like
nothing but it won't sit still. we can teach it everything except the old
trick of saying nothing. return to surrender in writing reading towards
nothing. death as an approximate synonym useful though entirely inaccurate.
we won't always be able to fool ourselves so we have at least that to look
towards. prison-houses are easy to find and even easier to inhabit. let's
assume for the sake of continuing that language is our favorite. blow the
fucker up why not we have our methods with a little faith and courage we can
go anywhere including insane. it's not as big a deal as they would like us
to believe. or maybe it is a big deal but it's not that kind of big deal.
it's not about all the sad trivia we're taught to hang on to at all costs
and against all odds. there isn't that much to lose. there's a lot of stuff
to do but most of it won't do us any good and the rest of it won't do for us
what we want and need so eventually we might realize we may as well give up
and that will be what we have learned and it will be enough.
a list of things to do:
    1: give up (write it down)
    2: relapse to attachment (rewrite it)
    3: laughter is not a heresy (throw it away)
    4: give up (read the precursors who have failed; love 'em)
    5: fuck yourself (with belief and/or erudition; cf. #2)
    5a: ditto but detourned (as a postmodern spiritual praxis)
    6: give up (poetry like hesychasm is an extreme sport)
it seems like a long process (but that's part of the hoax)
giving up is hard work. some folks think it's a god-given talent and maybe
it is but out here in the swarming quotidian it seems like hard work and a
hassle and probably a stupid decision consider the alternatives: i was going
to make another list but you can do that yourself. some fine day we'll all
be sitting around dying and the only thing we'll regret is that we didn't
give up because we should have at least attempted to get used to it a little
while we had the chance. writing poetry is a way of getting used to giving
up. treat it like an ancient spiritual discipline. do it for twenty years
with no significant results. it will ruin your life which is a fundamental
first step. you will probably fall in love which is a hindrance and a bother
but you'll get over it and go on.

january/march 01

m.a.g.