The Top That Spins
Where do we come from? Where do we go?
The top that spins of its own momentum, in the moment, exists in apparent independence of cause and effect. It spins. Free.
Even with us, apart from our contingencies, apart from the historical pushes that have moved us to this place and caused us to spin, the heart of the matter, the spinning, spins freely. Or can.
What character shall I write of? The adipose? The cunning charming pixie girl, with black hair curls and who sings as sweet and sharp and smart as me. The necessity of intelligence in my counterpart. Perhaps it is because my communication style is stunted and stilted — I have not spoken clearly since 2002, when I went in hiding from myself and others after the Hall.
The world bites, he says. The world bites.
What needs fears I, says the Courageous One. What needs fears I, says the Empty One, who has purged himself of all attachments.
I have seen four sights, says the Wise One Under the Tree, and I suffered and now I don’t. Whence. Whence Babylon. Whence Ithaca. Does Penelope wait?
Automatic writing, automatic thought. I am the passing of one moment on to the next, I close my eyes and let my fingers move, and like a breath across the hour record the patterns of my synthetic soul./ I am unclear. And need a wise one to understand me. Can they hear the sound of me typing? The record of human thought. Of endeavor. Who is the smartest? Who is the smarter? Rhythm. Pound. Words and then a stop. Words, and then a stop. Tapping. Tapping on a T key. Stop. Telegrams and telegraphs and telephones and incubators. Stop. Eggs. Word association games. Weird asocial Zion games. Stop. Searches.
Strange laws and strange facts and institutions and endeavors and games we play and keep on playing. Stop. Time may sometimes be a room, but these days it is a river. Carrying me along. The words are the words we – the words are the word we –
The top that spins. This is always how I do this. I begin with an image, and then depart on a tangent, and that tangent these days has always been and always will be about the strange contingency of my flesh and the circuit of my being and my own impending death and the death of fathers and of uncles and I write about it to defang it and euthanize it to dodge it to be somewhere else
The words layered on other words layered on words. The abtuseness of wool. Fur and scruff. One o’clock shadow. It’s two o’clock and all’s well. A quote from Hamlet, guard to guard: who’s there, says Bernardo. Nay, answer me, stand and unfold yourself, says Francisco.
Who is he to Hecuba, and Hecuba to he ?
Shakespeare says this of Mummers, and only once:
“You know neither me, yourselves nor any thing. You
are ambitious for poor knaves’ caps and legs: you
wear out a good wholesome forenoon in hearing a
cause between an orange wife and a fosset-seller;
and then rejourn the controversy of three pence to a
second day of audience. When you are hearing a
matter between party and party, if you chance to be
pinched with the colic, you make faces like
mummers; set up the bloody flag against all
patience; and, in roaring for a chamber-pot,
dismiss the controversy bleeding the more entangled
by your hearing: all the peace you make in their
cause is, calling both the parties knaves. You are
a pair of strange ones.”