Communist Poetry

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The Pigeon's picture
The Pigeon
Joined: 16-06-15
Apr 16 2016 02:11

Row row row your boat,
gently down the stream,
merrily merrily merrily merrily

The Pigeon's picture
The Pigeon
Joined: 16-06-15
May 4 2016 04:29
Sleeper wrote:
Tristan Tzara


Take a newspaper.
Take some scissors.
Choose from this paper an article of the length you want to make your poem.
Cut out the article.
Next carefully cut out each of the words that makes up this article and put them all in a bag.
Shake gently.
Next take out each cutting one after the other.
Copy conscientiously in the order in which they left the bag.
The poem will resemble you.
And there you are – an infinitely original author of charming sensibility, even though unappreciated by the vulgar herd.

Bob Avakian Has Told Me Through the TV,
A poem

is greatly heightened because of Bob Avakian and, to help strengthen
in which some rule over and oppress others, robbing them- worthy of human beings-
we have to keep on
the Chairman of our Party,
the revolution we need, the leadership we have and where everyone
This revolution is both necessary and- Communist Revolution?
revolution everywhere,
our Party
Bob Avakian
who does not come along very often. A the Revolution
The ultimate goal
Communist Party? leading even better
A Message, and a Call
In Bob Avakian
there are no more this revolution is the Fight for much better system leadership
we have the kind of rare and ism-imperialism Revolutionary Communist Party
struggle together for the common
Communism: a world where people work
Black Bob in the situation and all his knowledge
Bob Avakian
keep the party on - leadership - the precious - enable the precious leader - revolution -
leader who has
It is this-
his heart,
the world.
given today,
people that we we're in -
system has got us kills.

The Pigeon's picture
The Pigeon
Joined: 16-06-15
May 5 2016 05:03


They are nothing.
is their consummation.

Auld-bod's picture
Joined: 9-07-11
May 17 2016 19:45

How Fortunate The Man With None
From the play 'Mother Courage'

You saw sagacious Solomon
You know what came of him,
To him complexities seemed plain.
He cursed the hour that gave birth to him
And saw that everything was vain.
How great and wise was Solomon.
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's wisdom that had brought him to this state.
How fortunate the man with none.

You saw courageous Caesar next
You know what he became.
They deified him in his life
Then had him murdered just the same.
And as they raised the fatal knife
How loud he cried: you too my son!
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's courage that had brought him to that state.
How fortunate the man with none.

You heard of honest Socrates
The man who never lied;
They weren't so grateful as you'd think
Instead the rulers fixed to have him tried
And handed him the poisoned drink.
How honest was the people's noble son.
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's honesty that brought him to that state.
How fortunate the man with none.

Here you can see respectable folk
Keeping to God's own laws.
So far he hasn't taken heed.
You who sit safe and warm indoors
Help to relieve our bitter need.
How virtuously we had begun.
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's fear of god that brought us to that state.
How fortunate the man with none.

Bertolt Brecht

Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
Joined: 18-12-12
May 21 2016 18:34

**** **** is not my name

I am Webby, the great anarch

Sprawling creature of the deep

Strong and black and true

Centre of the universe

Always was, always am and always will be

The winds of time rush through me

As I tower over all that is

Seeing all, knowing all, being all

Righter of wrongs, deliverer of good

Beacon of truth

And now, a bell tolls, enlivening my senses, alerting my great mind..,

Hold on, that is not a bell, it's my alarm

I open my eyes and the greatness has gone, a withering old man now fills my vision...

So I go and get some apples

Joined: 19-10-15
May 21 2016 20:58

Sire, I am from another country
WE ARE BORED in the city, there is no longer any Temple of the Sun. Between the legs of the women walking by, the dadaists imagined a monkey wrench and the surrealists a crystal cup. That’s lost. We know how to read every promise in faces — the latest stage of morphology. The poetry of the billboards lasted twenty years. We are bored in the city, we really have to strain to still discover mysteries on the sidewalk billboards, the latest state of humor and poetry:
Showerbath of the Patriarchs
Meat Cutting Machines
Notre Dame Zoo
Sports Pharmacy
Martyrs Provisions
Translucent Concrete
Golden Touch Sawmill
Center for Functional Recuperation
Sainte Anne Ambulance
Café Fifth Avenue
Prolonged Volunteers Street
Family Boarding House in the Garden
Hotel of Strangers
Wild Street
And the swimming pool on the Street of Little Girls. And the police station on Rendezvous Street. The medical-surgical clinic and the free placement center on the Quai des Orfèvres. The artificial flowers on Sun Street. The Castle Cellars Hotel, the Ocean Bar and the Coming and Going Café. The Hotel of the Epoch.
And the strange statue of Dr. Philippe Pinel, benefactor of the insane, in the last evenings of summer. Exploring Paris.
And you, forgotten, your memories ravaged by all the consternations of two hemispheres, stranded in the Red Cellars of Pali-Kao, without music and without geography, no longer setting out for the hacienda where the roots think of the child and where the wine is finished off with fables from an old almanac. That’s all over. You’ll never see the hacienda. It doesn’t exist.
The hacienda must be built.

Auld-bod's picture
Joined: 9-07-11
May 29 2016 10:22


I have heard how in Ohio
At the beginning of this century
A woman lived in Bidwell,
Mary McCoy, widow of a brakeman
By the name of Mike McCoy.
Lived in poverty.

But every night from the thundering trains of the Wheeling Railroad
The brakemen heaved some lumps of coal
Over the picket fence into the potato patch,
Shouting briefly in harsh voices:
For Mike!

And every night,
As the lumps of coal for Mike
Crashed against the rear wall of the hut
The old woman arose, crept,
Drunk with sleep, into an overcoat and heaped
The lumps of coal to one side,
The lumps of coal,
Gift of the brakemen to Mike, dead
But not forgotten.

And she arose so long before daybreak and heaped
Her gifts away from the eyes of the world so that
The men would not get into trouble
With the Wheeling Railroad.

This poem is dedicated to the comrades
Of the brakeman, Mike McCoy
(Died from a weakness of the lungs
On an Ohio coal train)
For comradeship.

Bertolt Brecht

the button's picture
the button
Joined: 7-07-04
May 29 2016 12:46

Sean Bonney is pretty good. Just finished his "Letters against the firmament."

of Downing Street, that assembly of ghouls & defunct regimes
of the warm November wind, our absurd paupers’ memories

outside London it is all geometry, a euphemism for civil war
I remember our cotton dresses, those ribbons and bows

we skirted the disks of the city, its deserted, dying angles

we were wearing flags and pretty flowers, but our memories
at several intersections they opened into vast arched domes

of that other life, its obnoxious circles, of relics and animal love
the horrific quantity of force we will need to continue even to live


When you meet a Tory on the street, cut his throat
It will bring out the best in you.
It is as simple as music or drunken speech.
There will be flashes of obsolete light.
You will notice the weather only when it starts to die.

Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
Joined: 18-12-12
May 29 2016 12:47

Put through my letterbox by my old neighbour after we had a discussion about skyscrapers. His theory was that they were there for the powerful so that they could look down on us and convey their position of power;

Lord Foster is a lofty chap
He likes a lovely view
With easy access to the top
To take good aim and shit on you!

This arrived with it for my kids who were little at the time

Old King Cole was a merry old soul and a merry old soul was he
'It must be done, it must be done!'
Out of the window he poked his bum
To go to the lavatory
Queen Victoria passing by
Received a sausage in the eye!

Clearly my neighbour was a splendid fellow. If further evidence is required I'll point out that we regularly had an 8am Sunday morning tryst on his front doorstep with him dressed in white long johns and thermal vest whilst sipping sherry from a bone china cup and saucer.

Auld-bod's picture
Joined: 9-07-11
May 29 2016 14:53

The button #189, reminded me of the work of Alan Jackson, who was once a Scots anarchist active in the peace movement in the 1960s. He is still around. Here is two if his poems:

tiny nippled men

tiny nippled men wander through the auld toon
in delicate high voices they cry
‘we are what you’re coming to’

‘get away fae me, ye daft poofs’
the big drunk labourer shouts
and falls down the steps into the bog in the grassmarket

The Worstest Beast

the worstest beast that swims in the sea
is man with his bathing trunks down to his knee

the worstest beast that goes through the air
is man with his comb to tidy his hair

the worstest beast that bores through soil
is man with his uses for metal and oil

the worstest beast that hunts for meat
is the man who kills and does not eat

the worstest beast that suckles its young
is man who’s scared of nipples and dung

the worstest beast that copulates
is man who’s mixed his loves and hates

the worstest beast that has warm skin
is man who stones himself with sin

he’s the worstest beast because he’s won
it’s a master race and it’s almost run

Joined: 19-10-15
May 29 2016 16:29

Adrian Henri, Tonight at Noon

Tonight at noon
Supermarkets will advertise 3p extra on everything
Tonight at noon
Children from happy families will be sent to live in a home
Elephants will tell each other human jokes
America will declare peace on Russia
World War I generals will sell poppies on the street on November 11th
The first daffodils of autumn will appear
When the leaves fall upwards to the trees

Tonight at noon
Pigeons will hunt cats through city backyards
Hitler will tell us to fight on the beaches and on the landing fields
A tunnel full of water will be built under Liverpool
Pigs will be sighted flying in formation over Woolton
And Nelson will not only get his eye back but his arm as well
White Americans will demonstrate for equal rights
In front of the Black house
And the monster has just created Dr. Frankenstein

Girls in bikinis are moonbathing
Folksongs are being sung by real folk
Art galleries are closed to people over 21
Poets get their poems in the Top 20
There’s jobs for everybody and nobody wants them
In back alleys everywhere teenage lovers are kissing in broad daylight
In forgotten graveyards everywhere the dead will quietly bury the living
You will tell me you love me
Tonight at noon

Auld-bod's picture
Joined: 9-07-11
Jun 10 2016 09:49


Slave, who is it who shall free you?
Those in the deepest darkness lying,
Comrades, these alone can see you,
They alone can hear you crying,
Comrade, only slaves can free you.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.
One alone his lot can’t better.
Either gun or fetter.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.

You who hunger, who shall feed you?
If it’s bread you would be craving,
Come to us and let us lead you.
Only hungry men can feed you.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.
One alone his lot can’t better.
Either gun or fetter.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.

Beaten man, who shall avenge you?
You, on whom the blows are falling,
Hear your wounded brothers calling.
Weakness gives us strength to lend you.
Comrade, come, we shall avenge you.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.
One alone his lot can’t better.
Either gun or fetter.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.

Who, O wretched one, shall dare it?
He, who can no longer bear it
Counts the blows that arm his spirit,
Taught the time by need and sorrow,
Strikes today and not tomorrow.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.
One alone his lot can’t better.
Either gun or fetter.
Everything or nothing. All of us or none.

Bertolt Brecht

Joined: 28-05-16
Jun 16 2016 14:54
Noah Fence wrote:
Not exactly communist poetry but the poet is a communist, so what the hell.

A Poem From a Dying Anarchist

A good man knows how to die

He sees no darkness

Only light

A good man knows how to die

He knows what death is

He feels its beauty

Understands the nature of its release

A good man knows how to die

He never seeks it

But welcomes it when it comes

A good man knows how to die

He learns how by living a good life

A good man knows how to die

He knows that what he leaves undone

Will be done by others

That the things he did not see

Will be seen by others

And as death steals over him

The knowledge of this wraps him up like a warm blanket

A good man knows how to die

And as his death approaches, his regrets flutter away

Like a beautiful butterfly transformed from an ugly grub

A good man knows how to die

And as he breathes his last breath

The pain and anguish of his life leave his face

And it is reborn

Yes, a good man knows how to die

And I am a good man


A beautiful poem Noah, thankyou for sharing. I am sorry to hear of your health problems and hope you get better.

Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
Joined: 18-12-12
Jun 16 2016 15:32
A beautiful poem Noah, thankyou for sharing. I am sorry to hear of your health problems

Aw shucks, thanks. I'm pretty convinced I'll be ok, unfortunately my life depends on someone else's death which is a shame but with a new liver I've got around an 80% chance of living a decent length life, which ain't too shabby!

Joined: 27-02-06
Jun 17 2016 10:39

Roses are red
Violets are blue,
I'll smash the state
And liberate you

(bit vanguardist there)

Joined: 27-02-06
Jun 17 2016 10:42

More seriously
"Aphrodite Metropolis by Kenneth Fearing

Harry loves Myrtle--He has strong arms, from the warehouse,
And on Sunday when they take the bus to emerald meadows he doesn't say:
"What will your chastity amount to when your flesh withers in a little while?"
On Sunday, when they picnic in emerald meadows they look at the Sunday paper:
They spread it around on the grass
And then they sit down on it, nice.
Harry doesn't say "Ziggin's Ointment for withered flesh,
Cures thousands of men and women of motes, warts, red veins,
flabby throat, scalp and hair diseases,
Not expensive, and fully guaranteed."
Harry says nothing at all,
He smiles,
And they kiss in the emerald meadows on the Sunday paper.

Joined: 22-06-06
Jun 17 2016 10:50

Sean Bonney again:

ACAB: A Nursery Rhyme

for “I love you” say fuck the police / for
“the fires of heaven” say fuck the police, don’t say
“recruitment” don’t say “trotsky” say fuck the police
for “alarm clock” say fuck the police
for “my morning commute” for
“electoral system” for “endless solar wind” say fuck the police
don’t say “I have lost understanding of my visions” don’t say
“that much maligned human faculty” don’t say
“suicided by society” say fuck the police / for “the movement
of the heavenly spheres” say fuck the police / for
“the moon’s bright globe” for “the fairy mab” say
fuck the police / don’t say “direct debit” don’t say “join the party”
say “you are sleeping for the boss” and then say fuck the police
don’t say “evening rush-hour” say fuck the police / don’t say
“here are the steps I’ve taken to find work” say fuck the police
don’t say “tall skinny latté” say fuck the police / for
“the earth’s gravitational pull” say fuck the police / for
“make it new” say fuck the police
all other words are buried there
all other words are spoken there / don’t say “spare change”
say fuck the police / don’t say “happy new year” say fuck the police
perhaps say “rewrite the calendar” but after that, immediately
after that say fuck the police / for “philosopher’s stone” for
“royal wedding” for “the work of transmutation” for “love
of beauty” say fuck the police / don’t say “here is my new poem”
say fuck the police
say no justice no peace and then say fuck the police

Joined: 27-02-06
Jun 17 2016 10:54

George Woodcock
Sunday On Hampstead Heath

Underfoot on the hill the water spurts
Thickly out of the brilliant matted grasses
Where the slopes fold in groins and thighs of earth
And the winter sunlight in thin golden masses
Falls through the lunging wind that swings the skirts
Of the girls walking with their soldiers over the heath.

A group of dwarf fir trees marks the crest
With boughs like drowners' hands that claw the sky.
Far down the slope a white springboard rears
Its gaunt and skeleton frame above the grey
Tossed pool where in summer the divers raced
But where now only the ducks bob, resting their oars.

Leaning their weight on London, the smoky roofs
Below the hill stretch out their infinite folds,
A stony sea, far in miasmic depth
Where men sleep out their empty dreams of deeds,
And towers and domes, surging like green reefs,
Rise up heroic and powerful in their sloth.

Here on the hilltop my friends and I sit down.
They talk of prison; the conversation falls
And I say, "One evening we must drink at the Spaniard's"
I do not know what they are thinking as their heels
Kick out the turf and their gaze creeps over the scene,
Peering through the smoke for the customary landmarks.

But, going away in my mind from their shut faces,
Away from the quiet hilltop and the leisurely men
Digging their new gardens below in the little valley,
I enter the forest of rooftops and, under the grimy stone,
Walk among the pipedreams of men in braces
Reading in Sunday newspapers the end of faith and folly.

And in the broken slums see the benign lay down
Their empty, useless love, and the stunted creep,
Ungainly and ugly, towards a world more great
Than the moneyed hopes of masters can ever shape.
In the dead, grey streets I hear the women complain
And their voice is a spark to burn the myth of the state.

And here where my friends talk and the green leaves spurt
Quietly from waterlogged earth, and the dry twigs bud,
I see a world will rise more lovely than Blake
Knew in his winged dreams, and the leaves of good
Will burst on branches dead from winter's hurt,
When the broken rise and the silent voices speak.

Auld-bod's picture
Joined: 9-07-11
Jun 17 2016 10:59

Battlescarred #199


Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
Joined: 18-12-12
Jun 17 2016 11:16

George Woodcock? Is he the Tyranny of the Clock guy? First Anarchist literature I ever read as a wee 16 year old. The Anarchist Reader was the book and the Tyranny piece was the thing that grabbed me having started work and becoming subject to said tyranny.

Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
Joined: 18-12-12
Jun 17 2016 15:35

I am no feeble Christ, not me.
He hangs in glib delight upon his cross. Upon his cross.
Above my body. Lowly me.
Christ forgive, forgive. Holy he, he holy, he holy.
Shit he forgives. Forgive, forgive. I, I, Me, I.
I vomit for you, Jesu. Christi-Christus.
Puke upon your papal throne.
Wrapped you are in the bloody shroud of churlish suicide.
Wrapped I am in the bloody cloud of hellish genocide.
Petulant child.
I have suffered for you, where you have never known me.
I too must die. Will you be shadowed in the arrogance of my death?
Your valley truth? What lights pass those pious heights?
What passing bells for these in their trucks?
For you Lord, you are the flag-bearer of these nations,
one against the other, that die in the mud.
No piety, no deity. Is that your forgiveness?
Saint, martyr, goat, billy. Forgive?
Shit he forgives.
He hangs upon his cross in self-righteous judgment,
hangs in crucified delight, nailed to the extent of his vision.
His cross, his manhood, his violence, guilt, sin.
He would nail my body upon his cross,
as if I might have waited for him in the garden,
as if I might have perfumed his body, washed those bloody feet?
This woman that he seeks, suicide visionary, death reveller,
rape, rapist, grave-digger, earth-mover, life-fucker. Jesu.
You scooped the pits of Auschwitz.
The soil of Treblinka is rich in your guilt,
the sorrow of your tradition,
your stupid humility is the crown of thorn we all must wear.
For you? Ha. Master? Master of gore.
The cross is the mast of our oppression.
You fly their vain flag. You carry it.
Wear it on your back Lord. Your back.
Enola is your gaiety.
Suffer little children, suffer in that horror.
Hiro-horror, horror-hiro, hiro-shima, shima-hiro,
hiro-shima, hiro-shima, Hiroshima, Hiroshima.
The bodies are your delight.
The incandescent flame is the spirit of it.
They come to you Jesu, to you.
The nails are the only trinity.
Hold them in your corpsey gracelessness.
The image that I have had to suffer.
These nails at my temple.
The cross is the virgin body of womanhood that you defile.
In your guilt, you turn your back, nailed to that body.
Lamearse Jesus calls me sister! There are no words for my contempt!
Every woman is a cross in his filthy theology!
He turns his back on me in his fear.
His vain delight is the pain I bear.
Alone he hangs, his choice, his choice.
Alone, alone, his voice, his voice.
He shares nothing, this Christ; sterile, impotent, fuck-love prophet of death.
He is the ultimate pornography. He! He!
Hear us, Jesus!
You sigh alone in your cock fear!
You lie alone in your cunt fear!
You cry alone in your woman fear!
You die alone in your man fear!
Alone Jesu, alone, in your cock fear, cunt fear, woman fear, man fear.
Alone in you fear, alone in your fear, alone in your fear.
Your fear, your fear, your fear, your fear, your fear, your fear, your fear,
Warfare, warfare, warfare, warfare, warfare!


Joined: 28-05-16
Jun 21 2016 10:01

A great poem, heres another one of theirs I like....


I am not he, nor master, nor lord,
No crown to wear, no cross to bear in stations.
I am not he, nor shall be, warlord of nations.
These heroes have run before me,
Now dead upon the flesh piles, see?
Waiting for their promised resurrection, there is none.
Nothing but the marker, crown or cross, in stone upon these graves
Promise of the ribbon was all it took,
Where only the strap would leave it's mark upon these slaves.
What flag to thrust into this flesh
Rag, bandage, mop in their flowing death.
Taken aside, they were pointed a way, for god, queen and country,
Now in silence they lie.
They ran beside these masters, children of sorrow,
As slaves to that trilogy they had no future.
They believed in democracy, freedom of speech,
Yet dead on the flesh piles
I hear no breath, I hear no hope, no whisper of faith
From those who have died for some others' privilege.
Out from your palaces, princes and queens,
Out from your churches, you clergy, you christs,
I'll neither live nor die for your dreams.
I'll make no subscription to your paradise.
I'll make no subscription to your paradise.
I'll make no subscription to your paradise.

Joined: 28-05-16
Jun 21 2016 12:17
Noah Fence wrote:
George Woodcock? Is he the Tyranny of the Clock guy? First Anarchist literature I ever read as a wee 16 year old. The Anarchist Reader was the book and the Tyranny piece was the thing that grabbed me having started work and becoming subject to said tyranny.

I know that George Woodcock wrote Anarchism, A History of Libertarian Ideas and Movements, which is very good, I have a copy of it. I seem to remember watching a documentary about him once and all I can really remember from it is that he had something to do with some tribal people who had a communal, almost anarchist society/way of living, but my memory of it isn't great.

the button's picture
the button
Joined: 7-07-04
Jun 22 2016 15:04

Sean Bonney again, this time one of his "Letters against the firmament."

Thanks for your letter. You think I spend too much time going after ‘easy targets’, do you? Got to admit I chuckled over that one. A while ago, you recall, I admitted to you I make a fetish of the riot form, and in that admission implied I was fully aware of the risks involved, that any plausible poetics would be shattered, like a shop window, flickering and jagged, all of the wire exposed and sending sharp twists and reversible jolts into whatever it was I was trying to explain or talk about. Think about it this way. Imagine that you had a favourite riot, one that you loved. Tottenham. Millbank. Chingford. Walthamstow. I like the last one, but only for sentimental reasons. It’s a stupid question, but maybe will help you to see what I mean when I use the word “poetics”, or “poetry”. What was Marx referring to when he was talking about the “poetry of the future”, for example? And what use is that in thinking about prosody? Anyway. Loads of people have made maps of clusters of riots, trying to come up with some kind of exegesis based on location and frequency. And quite right too. Think of the micro-vectors sketched out within the actions of any individual rioter, of how those vectors and actions relate to those shared among her or his immediate physical group, and thus the spatio-physical being of that group in relation to their particular town / city, and finally, the superimposition of all of those relations in all of their directions and implications onto an equally detailed charting of the entire landmass understood as chronology and interpretation. Christ, you could include data about the weather-systems on Neptune if you wanted to. What would happen to this map, I’ve been asking myself, if we went on to superimpose the positions of riots of the past, the future too if you want to be facetious, onto the complexities we’re already faced with. Sudden appearance of the Baltimore Riots of 1968, to take a random example. Or the Copper Riots of 1662. The Opera Riot, Belgium, 1830. The 1850 Squatters Riot, California. Personally, I like the Moscow Plague Riots of 1771, both for their measures of poetry and analogy, and for the thought of them as an element of the extraordinarily minor Walthamstow Riot of 7th August 2011. Plague is a bad metaphor, thats it accuracy, it refers to both sides, all sides, in quantitively different ways. Hegelian “aspects” and all that, yeh? But primarily, its dirt simple: It runs in both directions. Means both us and them. Is a jagged rip through all pronouns. The thunder of the world, a trembling, a turbine. Cyclical desperation, clusters of walls. The first signs of plague hit Moscow in late 1770, as in a sudden system of forced quarantine and destruction of contaminated houses. Within a few months, a clock of vast scratching, fear and anger. September 15th they invaded the Kremlin, smashed up the monastery there. The following day they murdered the Archbishop, that wormfucker, Ambrosius, they killed him, and then torched the quarantined zones. Much burning, yeh, much gunshot and vacuum. And no antidote, no serum. Around 200,000 people died, not including those who were executed. Its a grisly map. Disease as interpretation and anonymity. The plague itself as injection into certain subsets of opinion, those predominantly generated within hegemonic diagrams of running water and digital electricity. Plague sores, each basilica split open to various popular songs, calendars folded within them, recorded crackles through the forcibly locked houses, code etc., LEDs and meth. Basic surrealism. Aimé Césaire wrote years ago that “poetic knowledge is born in the great silence of scientific knowledge”. And science itself the great silence at the centre of corporate knowledge, its dialectical warp and synaptic negation. As in a single node of extraction made up, for example, of the precise percentage of the world’s population who will never again be called by name, except by cops and executioners. Each one of those names - and we know none of them - is the predominant running metaphor of the entire culture, a net of symptom splinters producing abdominal pain and difficulty breathing, which in turn leads to a sharp increase in arrest numbers throughout the more opaque boroughs of selected major cities. OK? Now write a “poem”. Directly after the August Riots I went to one of the big public meetings, don’t know why, guess I was feeling a bit confused. Or maybe just bored. The speakers were awful, patronising, professional counterrevolutionaries, you know the type. But there was one woman who spoke, she had nothing to do with the organisation, they’d got her up there for obvious reasons, yeh, and she lived on an estate somewhere and her son had leapt 16 floors from a tower block window. He’d been on curfew and the cops had turned up, without warning, at his flat. To check up or something. Anyway, he leapt 16 floors down, and they told her he’d killed himself, “and I know my boy”, his mother said from top table, “and he wouldn’t have jumped, he wouldn’t have killed himself, not for them, not for anyone, not for the cops”, and her voice cracked a little and then she said “and as for the riots, I thought they were fair enough, and I think there should be more of them, and more, and more”, and then she stopped and there was some applause, but it was a little shaken and a little nervous. Understand? Here’s a statistic for you, an elegant little metric foot: not one police officer in the UK has been convicted for a death in police custody since 1969. Get that? A lifetime. I think that’s what she was getting at, at the meeting: every cop, living or dead, is a walking plague-pit. And that includes the nice ones with their bicycles and nasty little apples. Like some kind of particle mould. They are all Simon Harwood. They are all Kevin Hutchinson-Foster. And are running, with crowbars and wheels, year by year, strata by strata, backwards into, well, what they used to call the deep abyss, or perhaps the metamorphosis of commodities. The unity of opposites, anti-constellations cutting through chronology, an injection of three droplets of the weather on Neptune into each malevolently flashing unit of time tumbling backwards through all of written history, all 16 spirals of it. “Poetry”, remember, “is born in the great silence of scientific knowledge”. What do you think that means, “the great silence”. I ask because I’m not quite sure. Hölderlin, in his “Notes on Oedipus”, talks about the moment of “fate”, which, he says, “tragically removes us from our orbit of life, the very-mid point of inner life, to another world, tears us off into the eccentric orbit of the dead”. But he’s not talking about “fate” as in myth, or the number of fatalities taking place every year in police cells and occupied territories worldwide, or indeed the home of every benefit claimant in this town. He’s talking about prosody, about the fault-line that runs through the centre of that prosody, and how that fault-line is where the “poetic” will be found, if its going to be found anywhere. The moment of interruption, a “counter rhythmic interruption”, he calls it, where the language folds and stumbles for a second, like a cardiac splinter or a tectonic shake. Again, just as with the plague, this is a cracked metaphor, an abstraction or a counter-earth. Actually its an entire cluster of metaphors, and each one of those metaphors twist in any number of directions, so that “counter-rhythmic interruption” refers, at the same time, to a band of masked-up rioters ripping up Oxford St., and to the sudden interruption inflicted by a cop’s baton, a police cell and the malevolent syntax of a judge’s sentence. We live in these cracks, these fault-lines. Who was it, maybe Raoul Vaneigem, who wrote something about how we are trapped between two worlds, one that we do not accept, and one that does not exist. Its exactly right. One way I’ve been thinking about it is this: the calendar, as map, has been split down the middle, into two chronologies, two orbits, and they are locked in an endless spinning antagonism, where the dead are what tend to come to life, and the living are, well you get the picture. Obviously, only one of these orbits is visible at any one time and, equally obviously, the opposite is also true. Its as if there were two parallel time tracks, or maybe not so much parallel as actually superimposed on each other. You’ve got one track, call it antagonistic time, revolutionary time, the time of the dead, whatever, and its packed with unfinished events: the Paris Commune, Orgreave, the Mau Mau rebellion. There are any number of examples, counter-earths, clusters of ideas and energies and metaphors that refuse to die, but are alive precisely nowhere. And then there is standard time, normative time, a chain of completed triumphs, a net of monuments, dead labour, capital. The TV schedules, basically. And when a sub-rhythmic jolt, call it anything, misalignment of the planets, radioactive catastrophe, even a particularly brutal piece of legislation, brings about a sudden alignment of revolutionary and normative time, as in the brute emergence of unfinished time into their world, it creates a buckling in its grounding metaphor, wherein that metaphor, to again misuse Hölderlin, becomes a network of forces, places of intersection, places of divergence, moments when everything is up for grabs. Well, that’s the theory. Riot, plague, any number of un-used potentialities we can’t even begin to list. The names of everyone who has died in police custody since 1969, for example. The name of every civilian who has died in Iraq since 2003. Plague. The opposite of solidarity. Or rather, solidarity itself: the solidarity of isolation and quarantine, of the bomb-zone or the ghetto. The great silence is full of noises. And thats what I mean when I talk about poetics. A map, a counter-map, actually, a chart of the spatio-temporal rhythm of the riot-form, its prosody and signal-frequency. A map that could show the paths not taken. And where to find them, those paths, those antidotes, those counter-plagues. Anyway, I hope that answers your question. It’s a very partial account, for sure. There are hundred of other points of access to the metaphor cluster engaged within the riot form: think about the Portland Rum Riots of 1855, for example. Or the Zoot Suit Riots of 1943. Their trajectories through the varying intensities of official and unofficial chronology, the music of the past re-emerging as a sheet of blazing gin flowing through Chingford. Like that time we marched on Parliament, burned it to the ground. Remember that? It was fantastic.

Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
Joined: 18-12-12
Jun 22 2016 15:38

Brexit, Bremain

In out, in out
Shake it all about

Entdinglichung's picture
Joined: 2-07-08
Jul 26 2016 15:37

anthem of the Puerto Rican Revolutionary Workers Organization: (1976)

Joined: 4-09-13
Jul 28 2016 00:05

If I were
Mere a speck in your eyes
Blinded by expropriating them bastards
If war
Like a slithering snake comes
Bring it.
We'll endure and
Live to tell the tales.

(this anonymous manuscript was found after a Yugoslav official storming of suspected Bordigist premises)

Joined: 4-09-13
Jul 28 2016 00:06

Shit blimey
Double post
Punish me the most

Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
Joined: 18-12-12
Jul 28 2016 10:09

There was an anarcho named Noah
Who once was a bit of a goer
But now that dumb prick
Walks with a stick
He'd be dead if he walked any slower!

Joined: 28-05-16
Aug 19 2016 22:37

Power is Boring (Jello Biafra)

Believe me, if I were dicator
You know what I'd do?!?!?
Come to think of it,
There's a problem there
For aspiring tyrants like me and you...

Ever wonder what it'd really be like
To be your own dicator
Might be its own kind of prison
Of total fear

Can't make love or go anywhere
Without bodyguards in your hair
Never know which trusted friend
Has plans to blow you away

3,000 pairs of shoes
No one to talk to
'Nuff guns to kill everyone you own
The masses act so loyal
Yet you can't sleep in the same place twice
I wouldn't want to be a Noriega or Khadafi
Would you?

Power is boring
Power is boring
Power is boring

And ya know, I wonder how
The downtown crowd can stand themselves
Look sharp
Play to win
Through intimidation

That person at the next desk
Ain't your friend
He's your competitor
The only way to get promoted first
Is to get HIM first
Or else

Hi ho whadya know
They all got the same plan for you
Where do these people go
Between their daily meals of work
Too burnt and stressed
To even think of how to spend the money
No one to show it to
But people just like me-AGH!


Hot damn, we're the headliners at last
Gonna show this scene a thing or two
Play games and help our friends
Now the phone rings all the time
It's all you fault
"You've been crowned king
Of what you used to warn us about"

Why play that game at all?
The ones who want the power THAT bad
Are missing something in their lives
Being scared of my friends
In ajunta, scene or business world
Is the most miserable existence
I could think of on earth