(Apparatus : footnotes)
Keeping Up With BEING, Blown, Apart footnotes to an absent text
…so that…the great age of spatiality/motion/collapse arrives as one side of a flexion, hinge, or joint, still leaving open notions of temporality, and the question: how many hinges are there? (And not only that but how secure is the joint/hinge? Apocalypsis, its very possibility, rests on the insecurity of time’s hinge, that the door is not only permanently ajar but that the possibility of fully closing or opening it is impeded: that impedance is the unHistoricity/hysteresisity that always leaves open the desire for a final closing/opening. (For an unsurpassed examination of this `peephole effect’ and the phrase `time out of joint’ see the opening chapter of The Specter of Marx, J. Derrida.) “1
regardless of the expectancies involved, like all pregnancies, a
certain risk is entailed, either during birth, or resulting from
consequencies lateral to the `event' (ereignis) ; said danger
languishing (at least previously to `now', and keeping in mind
Heidegger's admonition that as the danger grows so too the `saving'
power) in the contextual apparatus...2
...and here a suspicion could be raised concerning pronouncements
of the `end of the author' and under what cultural auspices such a
statement could have been made.3
...such concerns subtend issue of the `technological Singularity'
and its futural, teleological `pull' as opposed to some originating
ur-event: the Big Suck as opposed to the Big Bang. 4
…when even the most abject nihilists turn in their foxhole… 5 …under such circumstances, even the most recursive genealogical 6structures (which apocalypsis must rely on: the closed human community, closed from `progress’, from nature, from evolution: the fly in the fly bottle but: inhabited by ghosts [geist]) tend to `flatten out’ in the more fine-grained temporal circumstances of a constant `now’, losing `cosmic’ qualities in favor of static (noise and stasis), although either tragic or comic, personal qualities; in such a culture (as ours) apocalypse establishes distance as well as eradicates it–the new fractal, recursive, inflationary, uncanny universe would point to diversifying genealogical structures through technological intervention: the monstrous uncanny and the collapse of the traditional genealogical. All apocalypses seem to share at least the notion of boundary collapse.
Adorno speaking of progress, decadence, and the Jugendstil artists:
“In the urgent desire to eternalize their state in images lived this sentiment (and here they agreed deeply with the philosophers of life): whatever it was about themselves which seemed to prophecy both their own and the world’s downfall, in this alone is the true rescued. Hardly anyone has expressed this more succintly than Peter Altenberg: `Mistreatment of horses. This will cease when passers-by will be so irritable and decadent that they become raving mad in such cases and, losing control of themselves, commit a desperate crime, shooting down the vile, cowardly coachman–. Inability to tolerate mistreatment of horses is the deed of the decadent, weak-nerved human being of the future! So far, human beings have just had the miserable strength to steer clear of such troubling affairs and mind their own business.’ Just so, Nietzsche, who condemned pity, collapsed in Turin when he saw how a coachman beat his horse. Decadence was the fata morgana of the progress which had not yet begun.” (Progress, T. W. Adorno, in Benjamin: Philosophy, Aesthetics, History, ed. Gary Smith) 7
Considerations of collapse, catastrophe, and disaster have always been a part of a culture’s baseline of operations, usually in conjunction with `defense’ postures, broadly conceived. (Manuel de Landa’s work shows how `military logistics’ has played a pivotal role in civilizational development, strategizing based on maximization of resources/technical development with the aim of forestalling collapse. This `aim’ is not a teleological concept but a `line of flight’ which seems to inhere in the relationship between materiality and consciousness, what de Landa calls the `machinic phylum’. Such an approach raises rather severe questions about the possiblity of technical advancement outside the confines of aggressivity, especially since it always seems manifested in a military, or even quasi-military–e.g., corporate–environment. The idea of apocalypse would then be, sui generis, inherent in the structure of technical innovation in that it forms one of the boundary conditions under which technology develops. See War In the Age of Intelligent Machines, de Landa.) Even the earliest cultures have elaborate mythologies delineating boundary conditions wherein one side denotes identity and the other dissolution. The ancient Egyptians believed that ma’at, the principle of balance and justice, was continually in conflict with superhuman powers of chaos and conflict called isfet and that nations and individuals could be in league with this principle. The leader of these embodiments of isfet – also translated as `falsehood’ or `injustice’ – was the gigantic, dragon-like serpent called Apophis or Apep: `Apophis was an embodiment of primordial chaos. He had no sense-organs, he could neither hear nor see, he could only scream. And he operated always in darkness. ` (N. Cohn, Cosmos, Chaos and the World to Come: The Ancient Roots of Apocalyptic Faith.) 8
…and what delineation of `facts’, what statistical enumeration of data, what demographic survey, what characteristics, what laboratory experiment could possibly reveal the truth of `unveiling’ (given that the crowbar doing the unveiling would also have to be unveiled)? What arena could possibly give enough distance from the goalline and still be `in the ballpark’? What being could get far enough from being to see being whole, the beginning and the end? A being which is non-being, an inhuman being, an exploded being, a being for whom the apocalypse has already occurred–but then, how could you trust/understand (even perceive) such a dispersed (non) being (something spectral but not a ghost, not some’thing’ which `left and came back’ but something which rounded the corner and is signaling through the trees)? 9
...perhaps the disaster has already happened; perhaps it is
daily, a void incrementally opening with every flip of a switch, every
shiver of an electron. It's hard for the Law to catch up with an
Oldsmobile. (Perhaps it's nothing new though: `In the Islamic sense
of time we are always in the last days.' The Apocalypse of Islam
in Apocalypse and/or Metamorphosis, Norman O. Brown)
It should not be surprising that fire has always functioned as the final trope of the apocalyptic series beginning with water and flood: a theological `ontology recapitulating the elemental,’ a gravid amniotic gathering and then incandescent dispersal. And of course water and fire function as the very stuff and substance of the coils of the dialectic…and the crucible of biology. What, if anything then, beyond fire? Smoke? Ashes? 12, 13
"...in naming the mental being of man communicates itself to
"Naming, in the realm of language, has as its sole purpose and
its incomparably high meaning that it is the innermost nature of language
itself. Naming is that by which nothing beyond it is communicated, and
in which language itself communicates itself absolutely." [...]
"The deepest images of this divine word and the point where human
language participates most intimately in the divine infinity of the pure
word, the point at which it cannot become finite word and knowledge, are
the human name. The theory of proper names is the theory of the frontier
between finite and infinite language."
Walter Benjamin, On Language as Such and on the the Language of Man,
in Reflections, pp.319, 324 14
Like some viral soup eating away its container ("Language is avirus."
Wm. Burroughs) naming eating away at the world, the farthest throw of the
technical: name it and it will come. and through the wall if need be: agent
of collapsing into and out of.
“Who ARE you?” “He never gave me a name.”
So spoke Frankenstein’s creation upon Victor’s death, when queried by the sea captain, frozen in ice, heading north, always north. But then the captain, whose ship is locked in place in the ice, asks of the (technologized human) monster (frozen in its own apterous interior), as the ice is breaking free, “Come with us…”. Like all good monsters, especially those who have no name, no genealogy (and they never have names, families–after all that’s why they’re monsters) he replies, as he turns to immolate his dead `father’, “I am done with man’. The captain decides to return home after all, the structure of adventure having collapsed in the face of that which, un-Homerically, can never have a home (and thus presumably only have `adventures’). The unheimlich has become unhinged (if nothing else–yet–in the power of its representations. Technology now prefigures its own release through special effects.) 15
“Cyclones are atmospheric machines that transform latent energy into angular momentum in a feed-back process of potentially catastrophic consequence. Their conditions of emergence are a warm water surface, a latitude of at least five or six degrees deviation from the equator (such that the Coriolis effect is operative), a pronounced instability in the air column or a low surface pressure, and the absence or virtual absence of wind shear. When these conditions coexist a cyclone can develop, over a period that normally lasts from four to eight days. A large cyclone transfers 3.5 billion tons of air an hour from the lower to the upper atmosphere, and releases energy in th order of 1025 ergs every second. At the center of the cyclone is a still zone of low pressure known as the `eye’ or `core’ which registers no radar echo, and which functions as the immobile motor of the storm’s angular momentum or expressed energy. […] ..an annihilation such as that of the cyclone–in which all stability is washed away and loss alone prevails–is not merely a disaster, but religion” (The Thirst For Annihilation, Nick Land)
…like some monstrous cyclonic force, lines of agitation, brute force, destruction, crackling lines of lightning forking through turbulence, constrained by some force not endemic to its own construction but finally, and awesomely: nothing but a thin shell swirling around an empty center. And it moves of course, the center moves, thereby it seems, um, `alive’ or at least some sort of rudimentary will seems to be present; but a strange volition, one based on the crackling energies of the surrounding rotational winds. Yes, that’s how it felt sometimes when he got up in the morning, like somehow there had been an emptying during the night, an evisceration of himself through the aegis of surrounding high tension currents/differentia somehow sucking everything out and zapping them, some sort of metaphysical soulbug killer (was he really being emptied or was it just a realization of how empty he was, that there was not, never had been anything at the core–and worse, that the same was true for everyone, that there were nothing but these thin violent crusts interacting? Had Something left–or was it just hiding?) Even the dreams had mostly deserted him, the one signpost he had that he might still be alive at night and not really fully occupied by some monstrous anabatic Other that seemed to be continually pulling him apart into strings of Brownian motion, then taking the particles, shards into the updraft of that thin shell of interactive systems that increasingly seemed to be a “him”. He remembered reading about the Great Red Spot on Jupiter and that it might be the result of something called a Taylor Column, a fairly stable pattern that showed all the way through the turbulent layers of atmosphere, and was itself the result of extremely high winds that were somehow `caught’ around some surface feature. But maybe, maybe, that was some kind of hope! If we were all Taylor Columns didn’t that mean there was some sort of `surface feature’ helping to generate it? But such speculation was useless–one could never make it through the turbulent layers to ever find that feature. And to make it worse, the winds seemed to be picking up, the electrical activity increased to a a web of scintillating lines criss-crossing, penetrating the shell, yes, taking on a life of its own almost (But wait a minute! After all it was HIS life wasn’t it?–but it seemed to be collapsing into a not-his-life somehow, into the life of that fluttering, crackling crust. Which meant maybe a was-never-his-life. He didn’t know whether he was terrified or ecstatic. And maybe there was a very fine line between those two anyway. Like Dorothy being swept from the flat plains of Kansas, surrounded by bits and pieces of her life, swirling by, fire fed by wind, a blowtorch melting experience, words, lives into a fine ash, a crematorium of souls whipped into dark clouds moving at fever pitch toward an ever receding horizon/Emerald City maybe searching for that surface feature to hook onto but everything had become a desert, a flat bleakness scoured into a geometrical precision by millenia of passing vortexes gathering speed as the terrain becomes increasing leveled, speedier, fed by roving skeins of electrical currents. He felt a great mystical fervor overcoming him, the emptying, hollowing only one part (necessary perhaps; inevitable certainly, in the long run–which was actually very short–of mortality, `consciousness’) of a great Battery of energies and their flows, circulation patterns becoming visible, absences and presences all forming the same sort of vortextual collapse structure, the old in/out, out/in matey, ego becoming a vacated site and the vacancy of more importance (though `not of the moment’ as was the ego–the interactivity skills of the vacancy seeming to belong to another dimensional structure) than its recent occupant. And besides it didn’t seem to be completely, truly vacant. The desert of the center seemed to teem with ghostly bedouins, remnants, revenants of previous collapses, though now gaining their/its own form of diaphanous `solidity’, possessing a peculiar `granularity,’ particulateness through aridity, like all deserts. And like all deserts it no doubt teemed with life, but life of a different order, rhythm, and tension. 16
The contemporary form of collapse is thixotropic: sudden release from the solid into liquidity, flows, unstaunchable cataracts–but only viewed stochastically; otherwise: ooze for each particularity, sometimes not recording well on any chart, meaningful only in the aggregate. The measure of movement by the time of seepage, a delicate deliquescence, the “everything solids melts into thin air ” of Marx: leakage then vaporization then condensation then rivulets elsewhere to be further contained in leaky vessels and over again, everything fissured, cracked, porous, all `insides’ being summoned to their destination out of their `containers’ to the `outside’, the osmotic pressure differential of a machine culture, a prosthesized, telematic infosoup of a culture, information, data taking on its own numinous character (but only stochastically, only in the dimension of the real not-real), irreally glowing softly on millions of screens. The dehiscence of everyone’s pearly core is a subtle one indeed, only showing its deinostic face in certain phantasmic products of that machine culture, certain visceral visitations of that liquid stochastic entity which, like a puddle of mercury in the palm of the hand, is ever elusive. ( yes, certain images show on the wall of the cave, its most horrid ravenous face turned toward us, but misleading in its ghostly leer–it’s not `from’ the wall at all: machine gnosis/ghostis–Look out! It’s behind you!…always.) An eagre of pinpricks, cascading through wires, luminal and electronic, millions of tiny irrumpent drainage plugs, exosmic, no doubt, into oneiric regions unfathomable by any `sensible’ mind. 17
Penetration/viral contamination: A virus has been likened to a microcosmic machine, only nominally alive, more like a nano-compiler, a site for sheer replication, given the right environment. A viral particle consists of `apparatus’ for evading a host’s defenses while simultaneously colonizing the hosts own cellular machinery and diverting that machinery to more viral replication. A viral particle creates opportunities for its own multiplication while shutting down the host s opportunities for doing so. The reservoirs for viral contamination are the great chaotic animal-liquids of the tropics (rats, insects), furious breeding grounds of organo-liquidity, production of pure escape vectors (epidemiological zones of contagion. There is some evidence that viral bodies follow uncanny paths of infection, unpredictable, springing up and then dying away, with no vector readily observable, the <holding tanks> folding into themselves, disappearing much like they appeared.), Bodies without Organs OR Consciousness, pure vectored machinic assemblage. (<<There is enormous power to the dynamic hierarchy of vectors mobilized by the rats. It combines the insidious subtlety of liquids with the concentrated displacement of compact solids; saturation with jumps. Rats carry fleas which bear diseases, augmenting the fluid dissemination of plagues with a ferociously discontinuous transmission.>> Nick Land in Spirit and Teeth in Of Derrida, Heidegger and Spirit, ed. D. Wood)
From the viewpoint of the intact organism, of the human community, this viral infection is pure collapse, no redeeming virtue.
"Findings: The affliction is characterized by high temperature
around 39 degrees centigrade; frequent vomiting of black, digested
blood, but of red blood in a few cases; diarrheal emissions initially
sprinkled with blood, with only red blood near death; epistaxis
[nosebleeds] now and then; retrosternal and abdominal pain and a state
of stupor; prostration with heaviness in the joints; rapid evolution
toward death after a period of about three days, from a state of general
health." (first description of Ebola fever, the"second most lethal
disease of the twentieth century", the first being rabies. from The
Coming Plague by L. Garrett).
The breakdown of the human immunological system, in both physical and conceptual systems, is paradigmatic of humanity’s crossing into the third millenium. (immuno-deficient responses always a result of deactivated border patrols, deactivated because of a subtle invasion from within.) And viruses have no `communities’ but rather `vectors of infection’, a ghostly shape of uncertain outlines whose only outpost and sign of presence is a body in decomposition, breached membranes, perforated borders, slow (or fast) leakage starting (staining) a new vector/line of flight. 18
apparition[both from L. apparere: to prepare, to attend, to appear]20
void 21She got up from the little grassy hillock, closed the laptop, pushed the antenna back in, and gazed down the incline. The remains of a road were still visible, dual tracks in the white, sandy soil leading thru young bushy plants here and there, a few tall lanky wildflowers stretching up trying to catch a little sun between the large pines at the edge of the once-road. A few pine seedlings were growing where the ditches would normally be. A few thumb sized ones were growing in the middle of road. As she set off down the slight incline a whip-o-whil cooed mournfully in the distance; they always made him think of those old Hank Williams songs that always seemed to be twanging almost subaudibly in his grandfolks farmhouse, the little radio up in a perch in a corner by the kitchen. A bob white did its bobwhite sound to his right. What was the real name of the damn bird he wondered? Although she had left the tarmac road only about a half mile back, even the occasion car sound had disappeared.
As she got further down in the hollow, clouds of huge dragon flies took off and flitted around confusedly, snapping this way and that for the mosquitos hovering over the small sluggish stream, which she could barely see thru the willowly ferns and tall feathery things. It all had a primeval southern gothic look to it, a setting for some cheap Peter Fonda movie about moonshiners and fast cars. She forded the stream on a few broken planks laying in the water and the corrugated metal of a collapsed culvert. He moved a few feet up the road to an outcropping of rock whic had been exposed in the middle of the road. Do some hell on the undercarriage of a car now, he thought. As she reached it, the partial spoke internally, <<You realize that it will be dark in approximately 2.7 hours.>> Never should have had the damn thing put in. She ignored it, sat down on the rock in the dappled shade, snapped open the notebook and began to type.
<< My father certainly had that sort of worrying obsessiveness. But yes, wory, worry, worry, that s what I do best sometimes I think...sometimes it doesn t even seem to have any content, just vague, persistent forboding. (in high school my friends used to kid me because my father would say--repeatedly of course-- <<if you don't get an education, you re doomed, doomed!>> As it turned out I was doomed anyway. And you know, my father was a teacher--an <<educator>> he liked to say--but I never once saw him read a book. In fact, I don't think he everread a book in his life. At least I never saw him with one...of course I don' t count textbooks...) Well, maybe partly it s sort of a southern <wise blood> disease passed mysteriously thru the generations A sort of Old Testament emotional plague and apocalyptic ferment coming from having to sit in too many tents, with sawdust scattered on the ground, and a coupla naked 60 watt bulbs hanging over a few scattered pews while some farmer/preacher harangues a few other farmers and their scrawny wives and their tow-headed kids, some of them still in their bib overalls, the preacher ranting and raving, but a strange kind of energy coming from poor guy, despite his painful articulations. But mein gott how I despised that!! And hated it more and more the older I got. But you know it was part and parcel of life in the town generally...so I had no choice but to hate everything. But a lot of that came later. When I was a kid it was actually pretty idyllic, riding my bike out to the grandfolks farm, picking blackberries down by the stream. I remember the cows used to keep the side of the hill by the stream, down from the farmhouse so clean, like lawnmowers had gotten to it...>>
He looked up from the glowing screen--hmm, sun HAS gone down quite a bit--and glanced out at where the pasture used to be. nothing but piles of discarded pulpwood, scrub bushes, a lone pine tree here and there under the lengthening shadows
<<...and collecting arrowheads from the hillside next to the farm (Chocta indians used to live at the end of the old dirt road. My grandfather used to catch possums, put them in a 55 gallon barrrel, feed cornmeal to them to `clean'em out'--scavengers you know--and sell them to the indians) while my grandmother made yellow cornbread on the old wood stove when I would arrive on my bicycle. Did all that shit really happen? No way to prove it...unless I go there--and what kind of proof is that, now? None. I could be sitting at home or be at the `farm' typing this and it wouldn t really matter, would it? It just seems entirely too...too quaint maybe. I always used to fantasize about having an observatory on the side of mountain around the farm. Think that was some kind of escapist fantasy? Yeah, maybe...that s also the time I started reading loads of science fiction novels. Hey, sometimes escape is ok, you know? I may have quoted this to you before but I like the quote that goes something like: <<those most intent on preventing escape are the jailers..>> and that just about says it right there. But there was always too much haze and humidity to look at the stars very much. Now New Mexico (or Arizona, or Nevada)...wow, stars like grains of sand, scanzillions scintillating away, seemingly a few feet from yr face...>>
She glanced up to swat a mosquito, simultaneously hearing his partial "Fehta, You have 47 minutes, 18 seconds before sundown. I would advise returning now. You have dinner scheduled with your mother tonight and...."
"Yes, thank you Robbie." If she didn't respond the thing kept blabbing away...besides it was right. She abruptly got up, frightening something in the brush to his left, and headed further up the hill and toward the bend. She was determined to at least LOOK at the old farm, even if she couldn't linger.
Her boots slushed thru the foot tall new-green soft grass as he trudged around the bend, bending limbs from now-overhanging trees out of the way. Grandpa Raylor would certainly have been mortified if he could see the condition the condition of the road he worked on so hard by horse and by hand. A newer gate was set up five years ago to keep out hunters but of course it hadn't done any good. Old beer bottles and cans were scattered around and even on the other side. Stepping around the gate, like apparently everyone else, she hurried thru what was seemed to be the rapidly growing gloom. Crickets, frogs, and few other unidentifiable scrapings were getting louder as she approached the old farm house....which was more or less completely covered in kudzu he could now see. A bit of chimney sticking out (he remembered the smell of hickory logs on late winter afternoons--the only heat for the whole house, other than the wood stove in the tiny primitive kitchen; couple of cats used to sleep under that stove. She remembered sitting on a tiny stool gazing thru the tiny mica window at the glow.) Can any of this be real? She looked up at a few early stars beginning to flicker thru the clouds. Sunlight still played on them, giving them a reddish tinge; a tiny sliver of moon was out simultaneously. For some reason she began remembering ghost stories from her childhood and he shook off a slight chill.
Privet hedge had grown up 10 feet high all around the front porch, mingling with the kudzu...where the hell had the kudzu come from? Never had been any on the farm that he could remember.... The whole scene began shifting, from external to internal and back again, getting into the pink 57 chevy, the old horse and buggy (fancy two-seated, black with red-stripping), the chickens roaming around the yard, like some fuckin' computer simulation--or Twilight Zone episode. The place where she slipped off the horse because daddy didn't cinch it tight enough; the attack of the giant rooster; all the barns, sheds...gone. She had thought about going inside but he couldn t bear it. The abrupt collapse of time was too much. All of a sudden the universe was entirely too malevolent, time an actual palpable <thing> sitting, hanging in the very air, in the gathering damp, in the goddamn stars that were now coming out entirely too rapidly, some ghoul entent on gathering HIM up in its damp tentacles, folks beginning to clamour for attention in his head, DEAD folks at that, just too much. She began backing up rapidly, stumbling over a fallen limb in what used to be the old sandy drive way (it had originally been U-shaped, with two gates; she had first learned to ride a bike in that sand). She turned and ran, around the gate, thru the grass, kcking up fireflies, round the bend, half sloshing, half jumping over the stream. Something big jumped into the water. Part way up the hill, she turned, shifted the notebook to the other hand, and breathing deeply, looked back over the decimated farmland, a blasted hell of redneck loggers, fires they had set, gotten out of hand...Ghosts--maybe they had killed all the ghosts--or at least driven them away. A dog barked in the distance as he turned and trotted up the hill, not quite so spooked now but still not very much at ease.
She felt somehow...denser inside than when she was a kid, like there was too much stuff packed in. Not necessarily good stuff or bad stuff or even particularly interesting stuff...just events and then the decay of those events in some sort of an inexorable progression of which she surely knew the end. Fuck. She never used to think like this. She KNEW she shouldn t have come back...this was worse than those pictures flipping thru her head at night. Wasn' t this what she had spent whole decades of her life trying to avoid? This kind of mournful, melancholic crap...
She picked up speed as he reached the top of the hill, hugging the laptop tightly to her chest, the dark closing in, time thickening, turning into some howling void, filled with crickets, deafening cicadas, like the 3 K background radiation of the universe, now a godforsaked screeching; even the stars seemed to have lost that timeless feeling for which he had always valued them, turning into ash heaps of radiation, harbingers of BAD infinity...22
To maintain together that which does not hold together, and the disparate itself, the same disparate, all of this can be thought (we will come back to this incessantly as well as to the spectrality of the specter) only in a dis-located time of the present, at a joining of a radically dis-jointed time, without certain conjunction. Not a time whose joinings are negated, broken, mistreated, dysfunctional, disadjusted, according to a DYS- of negative opposition and dialectical disjunction, but a time without CERTAIN joining or determinable conjunction. What is said here about time is also valid, consequently and by the same token, for history, even if the latter can consist in repairing, with effects of conjuncture (and that is the world), the temporal disjoining. *The time is out of joint*: time is DISARTICULATED, dislocated, dislodged, time is run down, on the run and run down, DERANGED, both out of order and mad. Time is off its hinges, time is off course, beside itself, disadjusted. Says Hamlet. Who thereby opened one of those breaches, often they are poetic and thinking peepholes, through which Shakespeare will have kept watch over the English language... p. 18 Jacque Derrida, Specters of Marx"...History as a closed loop with a twist: Mobius strip..."
- "...Hamlet's great formula: `The time is out of joint'. Time is out of joint, time is unhinged. The hinges are the axis around which the door turns. Cardo, in Latin, designates the subordination of time to the cardinal points through which the periodical movements that it measures pass. As long as time remains on its hinges, it is subordinate to movement: it is the measure of movement, interval or number. This was the view of ancient philosophy. But time out of joint signifies the reversal of movement-time relationship. It is now movement which is subordinate to time. Everything changes, including movement. We move from one labyrinth to another. The labyrinth is no longer a circle, or a spiral which would translate its complications, but a thread, a straight line, all the more mysterious for being simple, inexorable as Borges says, `the labyrinth which is composed of a single straight line. and which is indivisible, incessant.' Time is no longer related to the movement which it measures, but movement is related to the time which conditions it: this is the first great Kantian reversal in The Critique of Pure Reason."Gilles eleuze, Kant's Critical Philosophy
- "Something wonderful is about to happen."The entity known as Dave Bowman, as it
appears through the television in
2010: The Movie
- "The apocalypse is the way the world looks after the ego has
- "We live, no doubt. in a civilization which sets strongly guarded barriers around our use of words, but, naturally enough, brings to life a number of ways to cheat the wardens. We are not sure where the invincible ghost of the Absolute is going to re-emerge from and how it will come back to life. It might loom up from quite unexpected corners, for instance from the razor-sharp minds of physicists and mathematicians..."Leslek Kolakowski / Metaphysical Horror
- "Only a god can save us now."Last interview with Martin Heidegger
- Some of my earliest memories have to do with sitting in a pew of a Baptist church in Mississippi. They were called "hard-shelled" Baptists, I guess what we would call fundamentalist today, except that 35 years ago they were all pretty much fundamentalists. The preacher ("ministers" were for the Methodists, "clergy" had something to do with those mysterious Presbyterians--I always used to think of that science fiction movie from the 50s, The Mysterians.) Baptists were kind of like amoebas I used to think, always splitting over doctrinal disputes, setting up in tents, blasting away at sins under a haze of 60 watt bulbs, moths, and the smell of sawdust scattered around the folding chairs to keep down the dust, as a ragged handful of raw-boned farmers and their families traipsed through the muggy Mississippi nights to be terrified of their own and their neighbors sins and the redemption to be found at the end of time, WHICH COULD BE ANY DAY NOW!! we were repeatedly warned. And besides, if it didn't happen in a wholesale way with THIS generation of vipers, you could be sure that YOU were gonna die and for sure your parents were on death's doorstep and hence only an eyeblink away from either Jesus or the Devil, and THENCE a long Sleep which would be but another blink of the eye whereupon, for those favored few, the resurrection would find then sitting at the left hand of God Almighty, away from the apocalyptic turmoil sure to be visited upon heathens, unbelievers, and Republicans. And of course revivals were those week long periods when the congregation brought in a hellfire and brimstone preacher from outside the community to give us all a good fright. Yea, for that week death and damnation hovered as omnipresent possibilities, the steely eyed, rhythmic cadence from the pulpit assuring of God's love (IF you accepted Jesus as your savior... REPENT!!) as a way of avoiding those all-consuming fires which were burning on all sides of the beleagured community but were nothing as unto those Almighty Fires which were to rage at the end of time, relegating the unfaithful and the backsliders to an unrecoverable limbo of eternal Waiting for a god who would never come.
Revelations chpt 6:2. And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that
sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he
went forth conquering, and to conquer....4. And there went out another horse that was red:
and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace
from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there
was given unto him a great sword.
- And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand....
- And I looked, and behold a pale was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth....
- And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun be- came black as sackcloth of hair and the moon became as blood;
- And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.
- And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.
- And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondsman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;
- And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb;
- For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? 8. Collapse::FLOOD: The dissolution of former systems, an appalling clutter of debris lacking center, cohesiveness, a fall from those compact territories of desire and connectedness, but always INTO as well as AWAY FROM: currents functioning chiasmatically as well as rhizomatically, leading in all directions at once. Not into a black hole of nothingness but rather explosions of possiblities, including the most abject, the most forlorn, vectorization stripped away with the subsequent release of chiasmatic forces (well, they were always there, weren't they? but covered by the thinnest veneer of directionality, of identity--and what is identity but a direction, well chosen or not? and who is fortunate enough to choose such a thing?) It seems to choose us (both "us" as an aggregate assemblage and "one" as both representative of the ensemble and a singularity.) That is, a chiasmatic relationship as well, a jostling crowd/one, an impenetrable mass of collapsings/becomings. And when the collapsing singularities energies reach a certain threshold? Another vectorization sets in on another plane, sepsis turns to apocalypsis and, at least the notions of, anti-sepsis becomes the goal of apocalypsis itself, cleansing the wretched surface of the body (of the earth, of the body, of the sex) first flooding in a grand deluvial exhaustion of lacrymal possibilities of the Grandest Organ of all, the great tear ducts of Gaia forming, however, merely more pools of possibilities (Lightening/fire , yet to come). Gestating yet another round of sepsis/anti-, incubating (where? historically? virally carried through its singular members? Oh, the Church Triumphant YET AGAIN! but with a different name of course. Science we know thee well! SAVE US! as only a god can...but perhaps that is not what Heidegger meant.) But save us with fire NEXT time (this time?), wither Time itself, shrivel it on the vine, in fact destroy the vine, any possibility of return to biosis, that holding tank of sepsis, decay, that impossibility masquerading as life, result of the first biotic flooding of earth. Oh you puny sack of water, of lacrymosal yearning for your own FUCKING DISSOLUTION in oceans!! Flooding, flooding, that's all it ever wants, lost in that great abysmal chain of land-locked flesh, always thinking that it's bidding its time, ready to make the Big Leap onto land. You never got out of the goddam ocean, you fucker! Yeah, here's your collapse for you: breaking the damn, effluvial drenching so that it comes back thrice fold. Flood it, grow it, flood it, grow it--irrigate the old vaginal wall, plant your corn. Yes, it's a collapse, a perennial collapse, happening continuously, in a bedroom nearest you. But what does it have to do with the Fire?..............................
9. It might be helpful to delineate some the features which have characterized apocalypsis, at least in its Judeo-Christian formation which is certainly the most imbricated with western civilization and its technological strut work:
- The word "apocalypse" itself is from the Greek and means an `unveiling', or `uncovering' of a secret. More importantly, the revealing of The Secret and the Secret of God and not gods, a singular, unified monological Secret and not multiple, dispersed secrets forever and continuously being opened, revealed, etc. (The most public of secrets is sexuality, For some explorations of such bodily "unveiling" as it subtends - or prehenses - the "apocalyptic moment", see Of An Apocalyptic Tone Recently Adopted In Philosophy, Jacques Derrida.) Although the most popular notion of this unveiling is as an all-at-once blow, Northrop Frye maintains that the concept is more subtle: "We are greatly oversimplifying the vision [of a new heaven and earth.rc], however, if we think of it simply as what the author thought was soon going to happen, as a firework show that would be put on for the benefit of the faithful, starting perhaps next Tuesday. For him all these incredible wonders are the inner meaning or, more accurately, the inner form of everything that is happening now. Man creates what he calls history as a screen to conceal the workings of the apocalypse from himself....What is symbolized as the destruction of the order of nature is the destruction of the the way of seeing that order that keeps man confined to the world of time and history as we know them. This destruction is what the Scripture is intended to achieve." For Frye, the Scriptures apocalyptic rhetoric serves as a pry bar to lift the lid on things-as-they-are and to reveal that the real mystery resides in why we cannot continually see through to the real struggles of life rather than blinded by "the power of Nero", say, reading the Book of Revelations almost as a Zen fable of enlightment, open at every minute of time for personal collapse/rebirth, "like a thief in the night".
And so the Bible must ride the borders of the Real, cutting off escape through reference to the Real by subsuming the Real into itself--there is no escape from the Biblical prophecies (says the Bible) because the Scripture encompasses all that is, that CAN be, eradicating, de-toxifying all those multiplicities and Others whether gods, goddesses, ghosts or goblins. The history of the Judeo-Christian tradition, including all the struts which it has made possible and which have dissembled their disavowal and allegiance to such (for example: theory and technology to name two; there are exceptions only if we consider the question from a non-structural angle. But mostly the onto-theological pact has been signed, sealed and delivered always already as it were.) Assume that in some sense both a transcendental and an immanentist approach to apocalypsis are possible (and given the prophetic emphasis on collapse of reference as the final air-tight seal), then it is possible to see the sublime and the uncanny in that Single Event/collapse (although the battle is always on, for Churches of whatever stripe, with the uncanny (unheimlich), a continual oscillatory struggle for the borderlands, which pop up all over: Jesus versus Casper, the Friendly Ghost!) Yes, multiple unveilings are on God's shit list as Heidegger, ventriloquized by Hans Jonas, paganistically (and surreptitiously) pointed out: "My theological friends, my Christian friends--don't you see what you are dealing with? Don't you sense, if not see, the profoundly pagan character of Heidegger's thought? Rightly pagan, insofar as it is philosophy, though not every philosophy must be so devoid of objective norms... " (Jonas, 148) Jonas goes on to decry a Heideggerean theology as a wolf in sheep's clothing, using the apparatus of transcendental Christianity but detouring it from an Absolute Sublime to what threatens a Daemonic Uncanniness at every turn. Heidegger's notion of a Primal Thinking unleashes the immanentist gates for permanent revelation, apt to happen anywhere because not enthralled to an Absolute Transcendental Other (the Big Bang of the Final slamming shut of judgement's Big Book of Law at the end of history); and as a corollary, the resulting primacy of non-objective speech, "pneumatic theology", "glossolaly", or poesis, and presumably the intrusion of these modes into the intimate workings of the culture. Collapse would then be prefigured, frighteningly for Jonas, in such a scheme as a common occurence, one at the beck and call of man--like the collapse of distance in picking up a phone perhaps.)
- The Big Apocalypse (to distinguish it from the always already everywhere `little apocalypse' of technological collapse--not that it has escaped heavy onto-theological investments, which are only recently beginning to pay off in the form of a mediatized `stitching closed' of histories, as Jean Baudrillard has been pointing out) comes as the fulfillment of a promise, of law returning to Law and of Law disappearing, falling away (the chiasmatic morphing of Christ and Marx here): "After the `Last Judgement.' the law loses its last hold on us, which is the hold of the legal vision that ends there." (Frye, 137) The final collapse (Frye divides it into a "panoramic apocalypse" of "staggering marvels placed in a near future and just before the end of time" and a "participating apocalypse" or a rebirth into a new universe, as one is destroyed and closes and another opens up) is a prelude, the final consummation of the Law which is simultaneously a conflagration, and a consumption, one which seeks to have no remainder, no dark bolus, no slender slivers of cinders suitable for etching memoirs, beginning of history again, by survivors. The apocalyptic tradition does not WANT that but that is precisely what it gets every time prophecy fails which is every time (technology knows differently: it is prophecy's secret, stuttered success, the skipping over of the emergency which is history, and the secretive [in full view, aka purloined letters] by fulfillment of the Law. The failure of Prophecy and the success of Technology: inextricably linked, inculcating collapse/apocalypsis into the very eidos of techné. That final juridical adjudication (which is announced with the stroke of a pen) signals the end of the human universe and its replacement by the Doll Universe.
- "The substitution of rules for law in modern times seems an attempt not only to demystify power's link to prohibition, but also to free thought from the One by proposing, to everyday human affairs, the multiplicity of undetermined possibilities created by technologies. But there has always been an ambiguity in what goes by the name of law: in its sacred, sovereign guise, it claims to derive from nature; it annexes to itself the noble prestige of the blood; it is not power but omnipotence. There is nothing but the law; whatever it is exerted against, is simply nothing: not humanity, but only myths, monsters, fascinations. Judaic law is not sacred, but holy. In place of nature--which it does not invest with the magic of sin--it puts relations, choices, mandates: that is to say, a language of obligations. In place of the ethnic, it puts the ethical. Rites are religious, but they do not transform the everyday into religious affectivity; they seek, rather, to lighten the time that has no history by knitting it together through practices, services--by forming a meticulous network of consents in the glad daylight of historical memories and anticipations"(The Writing of the Disaster, Maurice Blanchot, p.144)
- "Law--prosaic laws--free us, perhaps, from the Law by substituting for the invisible majesty of time the various constraints of space. Similarly, rules suppress, in the term `law,' what power--ever primary--evokes. Rules also suppress the rights which go along with the notion of law, and establish the reign of pure procedure which--a manifestation of technical competence, of sheer knowledge--invests everything, controls everything, submits every gesture to its administration, so that there is no longer any possibility of liberation, for one can no longer speak of oppression."(The Writing of the Disaster, Maurice Blanchot,p.144)
- Collapse:FIRE: Cataclysmic consumption by fiery rain, from without, no remainder, fervently held wish for no cinders, no leftovers for indictment, creating fertile ground for another round: "Our entire world is the cinder of innumerable living beings; and what is living is so little in relation to the whole, it must be that , once already, everything was transformed into life and it will continue to be so." (F. Nietzsche) Spoken like a true pagan...but not the eschatological fire of the End, of the Scriptures, but rather the pale fire rising from bios. Maybe there is no other -- but that is not the scourging which the Bible attempts to set flaming: no cinders (carbon stains, traces of biotic activity, pencil precursor sketching its own demise) left to etch faint markings, directions to those travelers who have lost their way in the material fire storms; no, at least it wishes for none of that because it wishes to totally eradicate memory traces, writings, books, in favor of complete enclosure by the Book scrubbed clean by divine flames--BUT flames from without, clearly delivered by the Hand of God, wrathful devastation from the sky, bollides and fiery omens. Better yet : collision with the sun. Final eradication of daemonic internal travelers (para-sites), the final solution of the outside: eviscerated, burned...Cinder is only a word. But what is a word for consuming
itself all the way to its support (the tape-recorded voice or
strip of paper, self-destruction of the impossible emission
once the order is given), to the point of assimilating it
without apparent remainder.?Cinders, Jacques Derrida, p.73
- The necessity, for the sublimed Other to appear/to be appeased, of burnt sacrifices: Greeks conducting smoke to the gods, Christians inflaming the Holy Ghost, Nazis constructing smokestacks in search of sublime apocalyptic Purity. Sacrificial consumption: the bottleneck at the Mobiated twist pinching off to perversity, the sloughing off of one side of the chiasmatic stem--but always with a penalty paid (sacrifice) that leaves a rem(a)inder, a slagheap of guilty, reanimated cinders writing themselves--again! always again!--into existence, rising ghosts (geist) to refill, crawl up the non-demolished strutwork. The quest for the Fire Next Time, yes, the quest for the historical movement without rem(a)inder, without the dragging, limping foot marking the blackened, burnt, bloody stump tracing passage. Goodbye Animal! You are done for in me! I have sacrificed you! (And, if necessary, will sacrifice you, and you, and...If deconstruction is anything, it is this examination of the sacrificial moment as it makes its way, and is morphed along the way--one must be careful of what one thinks one sees--"through" history, which is simultaneously history's construction-of-itself [no plural]. And that is also the sublime, apocalyptic moment. No wonder the Bomb makes us shiver with a delicious fright.
- c. Authors of the apocalypse, would-be prophets all, tend toward pseudonymic devices (which are simultaneously cryptonymic, waiting -- `apocalyptically' -- for emergence, the re-name and the secret name folded together, initially), re-naming strategies which facilitate the emergence of new dimensions, vistas, abandoning the genealogical in toto as a "false memory syndrome" with the Real yet (always yet) to come, a coming hastened by a new `christening'. The destiny and fate conferred by the merely biotic (the family name) are sloughed off through re-naming, Cratylean rigid designation repudiated, melted down--and then believed in again! (Jacob taking up the name "Israel" which is taken to mean "he who sees God".) Numerological symbolism cannot be far behind at this point. All points on the compass of the Real are taken to point to the same magnetic north, all events become magnetized, quivering arrows pointing outside the purview of genealogical restraints of the traditions of the species, a new Adamic dispensation is allowed the re-named prophet. (A prophet apparently always being a transducer: having "heard" the word of God, he transforms it into a "seeing", a vision. This is one of the primary mechanisms of transformation/transition for the JudeoChristian tradition of transformative apocalypse, one of the pistons in the engine of Western industrial, scientific culture.) Perhaps an attempt to escape fate by motivating character for: "...where there is character there will, with certainty, not be fate, and in the area of fate character will not be found." (W. Benjamin/Fate and Character) Character is always subject to a re-naming, refiguring; fate, never. Fate is always, already, always `before' and always `after'. Character is always yet to (fully) be, waiting.
- In an apocalyptic culture (which Western culture has been since its inception and continues to be, the two being virtually co-terminous) re-naming becomes the paramount "fact" of existence, the attempt to move the baseline of operation of the species ever further from its genealogical specifications, from a series' `fated' status. The so-called "linguistic turn," as the overt realization of this phenomena, is not only in the philosophical sphere, using Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Wittgenstein as metonymic constructs for that `advance', but is the most visible aspect of late-modernism, or post-modernism. It is only with the fairly recent emergence of powerful cultural devices for re-enscription (or re-naming and which amounts to a genealogical severing: of fate from character, of past from future, of content from context, sex from reproduction, etc.) based on a combination of methodological strategies developed in the early 20th century which sought to bring into bold relief various genealogical aspects of human species life, whether micrological (Freud), macrological (Marx) or even ontological (Heidegger), with technical devices of representation (film, television, computer). The "event" : although in terms of the technical media, the event is of the nature of "will be" rather than "there is". The point could be made that the psychological accouterment of techné for humans is expectancy, "waiting for...", why Beckett is the Head Tech Writer for the Western world's Manual of Operation.
- "...If Kant denounces those who proclaim that philsophy is at an end for two thousand years, he has himself, in marking a limit, indeed the end of a certain type of metaphysics, freed another wave of eschatological discourses in philosophy. His progressivism, his belief in the future of a certain philosophy, indeed of another metaphysics, is not contradictory to this proclamation of ends and of the end. [...] from then on and with multiple and profound differences, indeed mutations, being taken into account, the West has been dominated by a powerful program that was also an untransgressible contract among discourse of the end. The themes of history's end and of philosophy's death represent only the most comprehensive, massive and assembled forms of this. [There are many differences but] haven't all the differences taken the form of a going-one-better in eschatological evidence, each newcomer, more lucid than the other, more vigilant and more prodigal too than the other, coming to add more to it: I tell you this in truth; this is not only the end of this here but also and first of that there, the end of history, the end of the class struggle, the end of philosophy, the death of God, the end of religions, the end of Christianity and morals (that, that was the most serious naiveté), the end of the subject, the end of man, the end of the West, the end of Oedipus, the end of the earth, Apocalypse Now, I tell you, in the cataclysm, the fire, the blood, the fundamental earthquake, the napalm descending from the sky by helicopters, like prostitutes, the nuclear thumder and the great whoring, also the end of literature, the end of painting, art as a thing of the past, the end of psychoanalysis, the end of the university, the end of phallocentrism and phallogocentrism, and I don't know what else?" (Of An Apocalyptic Tone Recently adopted in Philosophy. Jacques Derrida, trans. John P. Leavey in Semeia 23)
- LEAK: Pressure differentials, caused by. Formerly impassable barrier becomes permeable at weakest points, flow-behaviour resulting. 1. "to let a fluid substance out or in accidently; 2. "to enter or escape accidently from an object or container. 3. "to become known little by little by accident , carelessness, or treachery; as, the truth leaked out." (Or leaked in?) Variants: osmosis--selective "leaks' or transmission through a membrane; used for separating out molecular materials, analysis. Hemmorhage: violent bleeding, bursting from the vessel. Minimum conditions include: at least two heterogeneous, contiguous regions of varying entropic stabilities separated by a neutral barrier, itself subject to structural instabilities either inherent to the material of which it is constructed, or due to pressure gradients on either side, usually a combination, a situational or contextual failure.
- d. In that liminal condition, that pnumbral advance between regions, lie chaos-monsters, combinatory figures prefiguring the new and destroying the old, always threatening to escape the liminal threshold, voiding the material, genealogical constraints of species identity--both a threat and a promise. (The osmotic force no longer derives from heterogeneous regions but from the liminal state itself, a state constantly being expanded and reinforced through techne; technique IS that boundary state.) In this new order (which is always old, parasitic, viral, biding its time) Fire and Flood no longer suffice as descriptors of threat/promise, proffering all-at-once cleansing/gestation/destruction, always fronm the outside. The hinge itself is now guarantor of apocalypsis, a perpetual binge state, simultaneously in collapse and reconstruction, propelled by liminality. No longer a pass-through, the place of chaos-monsters becomes the staging ground, the liminal technical porosity itself the ontological weave superceding the ontic on either side; or rather the ontic itself becomes "infected" with the sieve-like character of the (formerly prophylactic) partition. All dualities now part and multiply, becoming yet further uncanny perforations, driven by faster and more intimate communication among regions.
- STAIN: embalming, emulation, epidemiology, contamination saturation of surounding regions, effecting a change usually thought counter to the "interests" (betraying a certain `moral' vector which one aspect of `stain' definitely has: "a stained soul') of the previous surface or figuration. contamination: source-point spread post-mortem rigor (to do Kant proud) through suffusion from injector--single point entry--spreading throughout the organism: replace "stain" of death ("deathly pallor") with "healthy glow" of emulation of life. And `staining' also raises the grain, by differential absorption, or one aspect of surface figuration from the surrounding area, giving `relief', showing patterns hitherto hidden.
- "Cultural technologies could be attributed to Man only as long as they were marked off off along the abscissa of biological time, whereas the time of the apparatus liquates Man. Given the apparatus, Man in his unity decomposes, on the one hand, into illusions dangled in front of him by conscious abilities and faculties and, on the other hand, into unconscious automatisms..."Discourse Networks 1800/1900, Friedrich Kittler.21.unheimlich< >techné
- Collapse through evacuation/renovation through ghosts (geist), revenants (those who come back after a long absence
- Catastrophe theory: the collapse of time into space or rather: the exploration of the hinge at which temporal bends into the spatial: the return of movement/spatiality (after Kant)? The drop off the cusp (and no longer the drop-off (up) of the Generalized Sublime, rather the Particularized Uncanny, the McKennaean Singularity): basic spawning ground of the un-homed, the un-hinged. The attempt to drop from Law to rule, the corraling of the uncanny by Cartesian drop-offs, no longer subject to a Great Beyond (but perhaps subject to Kittler's Great Lalula): "I call disaster that which does not have the ultimate for a limit: it bears the ultimate away in the disaster." (M. Blanchot, The Writing of the Disaster, p.28) Another name for that "disaster" is radical multiplicity; another name: techné.
- On a metaphysical level, the term used for such a catastrophe (a disaster of ontological proportions, reaching FROM the epistemological INTO the ontological and vice versa, in indeterminable relationship: a relationship which the structuralist/poststructuralist controversy mimics and relays) is "the fall". In the history of metaphysics, the fall is *into* (the material world, the burden of flesh, the density of earth) and *away from* (divine grace, pure light, pure being, ousia, etc.) Apocalypsis reverses those relationships, now collapsing the material world onto itself, releasing embedded history, law, and spirit into the fulfillment of their capitalized equivalents (Spirit, Law, History--economic capital, then, through technique, fulfills the requirements for their merging [the so-call Hegelian *end of history*) which then dissolve one into the other, the Fall *down* then becomes pure ascension. This chiasmos, and its fractilized variants, informs almost the whole of Western cultural and intellectual production. Older forms were largely unthought, simply inhabited; the sublime forms (transcendental) of the 19th century giving rise to the uncanny (immanentist) forms of the late 20th, leading to the evacuated (technological) forms of the 21st century (each imbricated with the other from the very beginning). The fall(s) become the coded remnant of the jagged, sutured link with technology (and there are sutures that allow movement--joints, tectonic plates--and that are immovable--teeth to jaw, bones of skull.) and of course sewn-together flesh/cobbled-together bone which allow a fusing/growth through the suture and subsequent scar tissue, marking the place, tracing the suture, sous rature in flesh, X-ed out, yet remaining (and the signs remaining not because anything has been excised but because something has been join(t)ed: stainless steel riven through the bone: a gambit (:*to sacrifice or gamble one thing for another*) to generate movement. Steel through bone: schrapnel or prosthesis-- the war machine moves one way or the other but move it does: sutured to consciousness and then consciousness sutured to the war machine and then... iterations eliding the flesh with each jointed repetition, moving beyond the strip, flesh reveiled/reviled, frayed, metal joint showing through, hastening evacuation steps for emergencies. (Just what IS the fate of the dialectic? Mobius strip stripped?)