Friday, October 30, 2015

iguana tangle

"The business of magic in our time is not so much to affect event as to compel ontology." --Charles Stein

Dies Irae.

"An imaginary planet has a role like a clown in Shakespeare." --Vonnegut

Flannery O'Connor: the cartoons.

("Pluto" by Thomas Woodruff)

Best movies about the Cold War.

The impossible is our purest mirror.

Kings in Yellow (including mine).

"By hand-setting and letterpress printing each of Borges' footnotes, I continued the exploration of printed matter and duplication; I was making hrönir. The book also includes a set of AZERTY translated footnotes that are the result of the confounding Dutch keyboard. All of the translations were created by watching Dutch- and Flemish-subtitled American television shows." --Abra Ancliffe

(via anthropocenes-imaginaries tumblr)

"I think Forgotten Languages may be a group which is trying to train themselves to read any language, in any alphabet on Earth..."

"Esperantujo (Esperanto-Land, or the Esperanto speech community) could certainly be counted as an anti-society..." --Ralph Dumain

"Vernon Sullivan was a pataphor, an 'extended metaphor that creates its own context,' or as its inventor Pablo Lopez put it, 'that which occurs when a lizard’s tail has grown so long it breaks off and grows a new lizard.' ."


Tuesday, October 27, 2015


Wain's world. (thanx metafilter!)


Monday, October 26, 2015

purgatorial whispers

(Keep Portland Weird via Robert H Price on facebook)

A soviet artist's response to just criticism.

"Now for the Pharisees, they say that some actions, but not all, are the work of fate, and some of them are in our own power, and that they are liable to fate, but are not caused by fate. But the sect of the Essen[e]s affirm, that fate governs all things, and that nothing befalls men but what is according to its determination. And for the Sadducees, they take away fate, and say there is no such thing, and that the events of human affairs are not at its disposal; but they suppose that all our actions are in our own power, so that we are ourselves the causes of what is good, and receive what is evil from our own folly." --F. Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews, Bk. XIII., Ch. 5, sect 9.

The big data of death.

"Zoopoetics is a new movement in literary theory and practice that treats nonhumans as individuals with agency, as conscious world-having individuals worthy of moral consideration." --Gabriel Gudding

Weep for Day.

"Alexander Ellis, the British philologist, mentions that a girl in Chicago was being raised to speak Volapük. Her name was Corinne Cohn; she was the daughter of Henry Cohn, a professor of Volapük, and in 1888 she was six years old.

There's no record of what became of Corinne. I imagine her speaking Volapük with her father at the kitchen table, after dinner. She chews on the end of her braid, and tells him, tears in her eyes, how no one understands her, no one but him! Only the problem is that even he doesn't understand everything she says. Corinne has invented new Volapük expressions, new idioms to describe what it's like to be a 12-year-old girl in Chicago, an experience for which old Father Schleyer had absolutely no words. For a few years, until she gives it up for boys and boat rides on Lake Michigan, Volapük is a living language." --Paul LaFarge


"In the end, a lot of this stuff made its way into The Grasshopper King, which in some sense is about the question: 'What if a real language worked the way people who invent languages want languages to work, and what would happen to you if you tried to speak that language?' " --Jordan Ellenberg on his blog

"Don’t try using this 'all the blood in the world' business in a poem, I’ve already done it."


Friday, October 23, 2015

beelzebub's bulldozer

(Ida Lupino via @selfstyledsiren via @HarryStephenKeeler)

Ill Bethisad.

Though these intelligent predators no longer took an active part in killing their food, they still relaxed by watching nonstop depictions of slaughter & violence; they could not imagine a story without violent conflict; & their only concept of peace was a quiet battlefield where one side has annihilated another.

Perloff on Loy's Anglo-Mongrels.

(via Ken Halbroeder on Fb)

"In the end, it is the mystery that lasts, and not the explanation." --Sacheverell Sitwell via @MrKittyFluff

"The inmost scholar on the hot race muses."

"I consider Volapuk to be a Steampunk language." --someone on the Conlang Listserv

The Tablets, part I.

Relativistic acceleration equations. (I spent the summer after i graduated from high school figuring this out.)

An interview with Andrew Drummond.

"I remember evacuating for Katrina, stuck in a traffic jam at 3 AM the Saturday before it hit, and listening to the local AM station take calls from people who were on the fence about evacuating. (The year before, the city had emptied out for a false alarm, and a lot of people who had evacuated from what turned out to be a gusty sprinkle were reluctant to do it again.) We were somewhere in the Florida panhandle, but the reception was crystal clear...this was WWL, "The Big 870," transmitting at 50,000 watts across the South.

Finally, after the nth call from someone with the means to evacuate but not the inclination, the meteorologist blew up:

"Listen to me, this isn't like last year. This is one of the strongest, most aggressive storms I've ever seen. For all intents and purposes, this isn't even a's a tornado the size of the Gulf Of Mexico and it's headed right for us. You want to know what to do? Here it is: get in your car, tune to this station, and start driving north. When you can no longer get our signal, it should be safe to stop." --Ian A.T. on Metafilter


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

pain mockers

Zombie Formalism.

"... to read the entire history of philosophy, premised on Presence, as an immunological response to media. ...Why this horror of mediation? Why this horror of the material?" --Larval Subjects

Gleki Kanba.

"Oddly enough, I’ve always thought of The Conspiracy against the Human Race as a kind of inspirational, quasi-self-help book." --new Ligotti interview

Chanoyu diaspora.

" aesthetic that was countercultural in 1965 was becoming mainstream by 1968, and was still rippling through the world of graphic design in the early 1970s." --feuilleton

Is Accelerationism Good for the Underground?

"Of all the French Catholics, I admire the horror writer Petrus Borel, also known as The Lycanthrope, who said he was a papist because he couldn’t be a cannibal." --Ligotti, ibid

(via tiredtangerine via sweetspider on tumblr)

"If politics, philosophy, and religion are really about signaling, we should expect to find countersignaling there as well." --Which leads to the identification of anti-politics politicians & anti-philosophy philosophers--a strong feature of our time--& invites the question: what is an anti-religion religious person like?

(from Washington Post via feuilleton)

"(a reference to scuba-diving gear, for example, in a poem dated before the invention of such)..."


Friday, October 16, 2015

oh vivid pose

The Typewriter Revolution.

"I'm not chasing the themes, the themes are chasing me!" --Dado, in: Peppiatti, Interviews with Artists 1966-2012


"Not the least proof of Poe's genius is that he abandoned this genre of writing as soon as he had mastered it. --CAS, on detective stories" --@MrKittyFluff

Ecstasist of the pwoermd.

"Poem Written by Electric Light"

And I do not after all
Know so much about
This dark business of
Belonging to the future.

And Cassilda will have sung
And I will know little more
Than the patter of raindrops
Soft on my windshield.

The shadows lengthen
In Carcosa.
Shell casings
Scatter the playground
And the city's not rebuilt

That the superstorm shattered.
In the morning we get up
Before it is even light,
Peer through boarded-up windows

To see if it's safe.
Of course it's not safe.
And Cassilda will have sung
In the raw darkness

Not calling to us
But calling through us
To leave this wreck of today,
Its foolish expenditures

Of flesh, of spirit;
Our car breaks down and
We refuse to walk away
From a fast approaching train

And what would it take to go?
Maybe only to
Hear Cassilda sing
And not be afraid.

Le Voyage. Reissued.

(via sweetspider on tumblr)


Tuesday, October 13, 2015

a reno tara ratonera

(from mashable dot com via everlasting blort)

A list that starts with Schwob.

the mystery remains
when all the tales are told
when we have wiped the walls of splattered brains
the mystery remains

through drouth & hurricanes
through monkeyshines of men & love grown cold
the mystery remains
when all the tales are told

Ten idiolects.

(from creativeboom dot com)

"Additionally, the hidden people settlements that are built there should also be respected, as hidden people have been observed near the hillocks."


Monday, October 12, 2015

rial celadon, a nodal éclair

"An aching heart is but a steppingstone" --Helen Steiner Rice

"In my favorite games, a Fallout 2 or a Project Nomad, for example, I never really cared about 'winning,' or anything skill-based, I just wanted to look around and explore and experience the fictional world." --Jacob Bakkila, the inventor of Horse_eBooks

"Years later he [Kawabata] revealed that he had not only read the Japanese translation of Ulysses but also had bought a copy of the English text and compared the two." --5 Modern Japanese Novelists

"In the house of charred furniture I paused, for hours all historical agitation was suspended, calmed by the murals in the mystery villa." --Durs Grünbein via woods_lot

"Much as dust self-appoints itself into clumps in one corner rather than another, so the idea that the reality is realer over the horizon reels us in." --Tibor Fischer

Avantacular Archives.

"I freed a thousand slaves I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves." -Harriet Tubman

(via bruce sterling on ello)


Friday, October 09, 2015

"Mistuh Kurzweil--he dead."

"Hunger is my native place in the land of the passions." --Hammarskjöld

A science fiction novel in which corporations are people, & human beings aren't.

Scents and Sensibility. " Perfumery has a lot to do with this process of courting the edges of unrecognizability, of evoking sensations that don't have names, or of mixing up sensations that don't belong together."

"@everyword is a Twitter bot—an automated agent that makes Twitter posts. There are a lot of interesting Twitter bots out there."

A copy of Mein Kampf in German. From 1936. On the one hand, only another valuable, rare book. Such as is occasionally encountered in our business. On the other...if there was ever a real Necronomicon, this is it.

(via imgneed)

The Reinvention of Black.

I've read it. It's verbose, abstract, cliché-ridden; the very definition of "unreadable". I suspect not many of his followers read it either. It wasn't this that drove the Götterdämmerung. It's more like the poetry of Mao, the paintings of Dubya: a byproduct. Maybe you could tease out some of his psychosis from what it says, & what it doesn't say--but written words were obviously not his weapon of choice.

Every non-word tweeted (eventually).

I wouldn't want to sell this to a Neo-Nazi. (But who else would want it for $100?) Maybe it should be donated--like to the Holocaust Museum. The case has been made that Lucretius's poem was another deadly-paginated object, a relic with hidden explosive powers, almost an entity with an entity's volition. This is not such a book.

World Palindrome Championship #2.

(gurmukhi alphabet, from wikipedia)



Tuesday, October 06, 2015


"The first bowl moistens my lips and throat; The second bowl breaks my loneliness; The third bowl searches my barren entrails but to find therein some five thousand scrolls; The fourth bowl brings out light perspiration, and so troubling affairs in my life all disperse through my pores; The fifth bowl cleanses my whole body; The six bowl opens up a channel to reach the immortals; The seventh bowl I dare not drink, or I would seem to have wings and take flight to paradise in a light breeze." --Lu Tong

How the future will judge us.

"Paper Loves Ink

Ravens tell poets,
'Paper loves ink,'
(while ruffling feathers)
'like words whisper secrets.'
Stories unravel
thread by thread.
So spills ink, into
into ink spills.
'So, thread by thread,
unravel stories.'
Secrets whisper words,
like feathers
ruffling, while,
'Ink loves paper.'
Poets tell ravens."

Penelope Connor

"Every poem’s a failed palindrome. --Graham Foust

San Fransokyo.

"9 to 5

Dream. Wake up. Pour cream in patterns in coffee.
Dream. Wake up. Pour cream in patterns in coffee.
Burn your tongue on another sip.
Burn your tongue on another sip.
Wake up in coffee, in cream. Burn another sip.
Pour patterns on your tongue. Dream.

Drive to work two miles over the speed limit.
Drive to work two miles over the speed limit.
Don’t notice the poppies on the side of the road.
Don’t notice the poppies on the side of the road.
The poppies on the side of the road
don’t notice the speed limit. Drive over two miles to work.

Watch the clock on the wall. It ticks a slow minute.
Watch the clock on the wall. It ticks a slow minute.
Avoid the smiling woman in a blue dress with buttons.
Avoid the smiling woman in a blue dress with buttons.
Watch the wall, the clock; the woman in a dress with buttons.
A slow, blue minute ticks on, smiling. Avoid it

with patterns on the cream wall. Work
two miles over the speed limit. Pour a minute
in coffee. Watch it. Avoid another sip.
Dream in blue buttons on a dress. Drive into
the slow poppies on the side of the road, the woman.
Notice your tongue ticks, smiling. Burn the clock. Don’t wake up."

Margie Fuston

Interesting cli-fi list i never heard of.

"Moth Ash

Too sere, moths
Ah! To meld, arcing
In ebony align

I wish to melt
‘Til, little moths,
I wing, I lay

Benign, I cradle moth ash to
Mere soot"

Steven Fraser

Labels: , ,

Monday, October 05, 2015

mothman oodoolay

(ruins of Merv, via wondermondo)

Dankness instrumentalized.

"Carl Theodor Dreyer's 1932 film Vampyr presupposes such a reality coexistent with our own, pushing and pulling against the grain of the ordinary; a reality in which death permeates every cubic centimeter, warping light into darkness and suffocating every vestige of hope, a reality as porous as dream and as terrifying." --Blake Collier writing on Mockingbird

New Venus thread.

"The blind need eyes, not light." --Salih of Merv (quoted by Jung, i think--or maybe here)

Lovecraftian Lucretius.

(from nasa via boingboing)

A copy of the 2015 Best American Poetry, with its now-notorious "yellowfaced" entrant. I am more excited by the mention of a "sonnet-ghazal" (i have written) in the intro.

BL Lacerta page with many samples.

My didgeridoo story. A correspondent in the 80s sent me a cassette which included some didgeridoo music. This fascinated me, not least because i could subsequently find scarcely any mention of the thing anywhere. --And then, somewhat later, i had been contacted to find a performance venue for some travelling improvisatory musicians who were coming to Dallas. I found a house, & contacted as many people as i could. So we were sitting there beginning, when in walked: one didgeridoo. Two didgeridoos. Three didgeridoos.


Propaganda, or propaganda lite?

Disappearance of Gertrude Beasley.

Reading: a cli-fi noir (Depth), set in a New York City where the ocean covers everything up to the 20th storey or so. Occasional satirical touches (reminiscent of Grey--that is, Jon Armstrong's!), such as pseudo-cigarettes that clear up your sinuses, make your teeth whiter, but are just as addictive as the old kind. Also, in the "mainland United States" it's a federal offense for women to wear pants...

The Trouble with Physics.

all things we know
but how to die
victors long ago
all things we know

let the darkness grow
in a wild sky
all things we know
but how to die


Friday, October 02, 2015



"We are entering a new era of paranoiac warfare in which the greatest task will be to identify the enemy and his weapons." --Slavoj Žižek

Do not track thread.

" 'Tis this enamors in the East--
And tints the Transit in the West
With harrowing Iodine."

Emily Dickinson

Esoteric epsilon Eridani.

"...he sought consolation in Arabic, which is expressly designed for the use of the afflicted." --The Light that Failed

(wikipedia "Ghassulian" via Lanny Quarles on Fb)