erasure

These poems were submitted to the sociopoetic erasure poetry competition 2013.

Entrants were asked to create a poem by erasing from Chapter 33 of Karl Marx’s Capital: The Modern Theory of Colonisation.

The winning poem was “Orison”, by Alison Glenny.

The other entries appear alphabetically by surname.

Orison
Alison Glenny

 
one
 
 
 
Here is the domain
 
                        of the
 
 
 
                        ready-made
 
                        Cry out
 
                        it is otherwise –
 
 
 
There
 
                        the sycophant compels him
 
                        to proclaim aloud
 
                        the truth
 
 
 
 
 
the correlative –
 
                        not a thing but
 
                        instrumentality of things.
 
 
 
 
 
He moans
 
                        so intimately wedded
 
                        to substance even
 
                        when
 
they are
 
                        the opposite –
 
 
 
 
 
Thus it is
 
                        with the map of
 
                        settlements
 
                        a passion prevents
 
                        possession.
 
 
 
Impossible!
 
 
 
Wanting
 
                        a simple contrivance
 
                        to float in the imagination
 
                        he divides
 
                        the concert
 
from dream to reality
 
 
 
 
 
the impulse
 
                        for glory
 
                        perishes
 
                        in his own hands.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
two
 
We have seen
 
                        the secret:
 
                        all men are free
 
                        so very dear
 
                        at any price
 
 
 
 
 
soil does not exist
 
                        nor soap and candles
 
                        shoes and clothes.
 
                        The beauty in this
 
oscillation!
 
 
 
 
 
Pretty fancy
 
                        is torn
 
                        asunder
 
 
the law
 
                        falls to pieces
 
                        he thirsts
 
                        for impediments
 
 
 
 
 
What becomes of sentiment?
 
 
 
 
 
It avails him nothing
 
                        the end of the world has come
 
                        the absence of all
 
                        artifice.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
tout sera pour le mieux
 
 
The wave
 
can wash them away
 
                        the promised land
 
                        the shameless land
 
                        lavishing the stream
 
 
 
 
 
The only thing that interests us
 
                        the secret
 
                        proclaimed on the housetops –
 
                        the fundamental condition
 
                        the annihilation of words.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Chapter Thirty-Three
Murray Annals

                 “Political economy confuses Western Europe: the gradual decay; the anxious zeal; the capitalist regime.
                  The capitalist! The capitalist compels the sycophant political economist to make a clean breast of the division of labour – impossible without expropriation of the labourers!
                  Capital wealth means poverty of the people, mother!”
                  calls Wakefield.
                  “In the Colonies the other man is compelled to sell himself, Mr. Peel,” he moans.
                  Mr. Peel left his bed.
 
                  Unhappy Mr. Peel, who so intimately wedded the head of the political economist, that he christens its exact opposite.
                  Thus is it with Wakefield.
                  “If,” says Wakefield, “no man would have a passion for himself then this instinct of self-denying fanaticism would give itself full fling impulse to self-expropriation.”
                  Wakefield himself is a mere pis aller, since he unfortunately slaves without his own hands.
                  This is the secret vice – where everyone pleases himself.
                  Dear Americans frequently market their own soap and candles, in their pursuit of queer people.
​Where is the field of abstinence for the capitalists?
 
                  “The great beauty of the wage-worker – production – is unmistakable at home, mother,” Wakefield complains.
                  “Think of the horror! The end of the world has come!” Wakefield laments.
                  Now, according to Wakefield, the unfortunate barbarising of Europe, Canada and the state of New York, deposits a sediment of supernumerary characters in the melodrama.
                  “The English capitalist scattered American peasants. Reverse the miserable farm-horse! Heal the cancer!
                  The trick is – how to kill the Government virgin? (Tout sera pour le mieux dans le meilleur des mondes possibles.)
                  This is the great secret!” Wakefield cries in triumph. (The price of the soil, of course, is nothing but a euphemistic circumlocution for the ransom which the labourer pays for the benefit of his old master, Mr. Wakefield.)
 
                  The fiasco was complete as Sir Robert Peel’s stream only diverted Wakefield’s recipe on one hand. (The enormous and ceaseless stream leaves behind a sediment on the other hand.)
                  A colossal pressure (the rise of a huge capitalistic giant), yet far from being brought down to the normal level, shameless Wakefield produced, in Australia, the ‘stream that attract a glut of prostitution’ – wantonly as in London.
                  However, the only thing that interests us is the secret discovered in the New World, and proclaimed on the housetops: the capitalist annihilation of the labourer!

Chapter Thirty-Three
by Gilda Arawiran-Ramirez

Political economy confuses on principle
Two very different kinds of private property
One rests on the producers’ own labour
The other the employment of others.
It forgets
The latter is the direct antithesis of the former,
Absolutely grows on its tomb only
Process of primitive accumulation
More of less accomplished capitalist regime
Either directly conquered national production
Or, indirectly controls strata of society
Though belonging to antiquated mode of production,
Continue to exist side by side in gradual decay
To this ready-made world of capital
Political economist applies
The notions of law and of property
Inherited from a pre-capitalistic world
All the more anxious zeal
All the greater unction
Loudly the facts cry out
In the face of ideology in the colonies.
Capitalist regime comes into collision
With the resistance of the producer
Owner of his own conditions of labour,
Employs that labour to enrich himself
Instead of the capitalist
The contradiction
Two diametrically opposed economic systems,
Manifest itself in a struggle between them
The capitalist at his back the power of the mother-country,
Tries to clear out of his way by force
Modes of production and appropriation
Based on the independent labour of the producer.
The same interest compels
The sycophant of capital,
The political economist in the mother-country,
Proclaim theoretical identity of capitalist mode of production
That same interest compels to make a clean breast
To proclaim aloud the antagonism
Two modes of production.
Proves the development
The social productive power of labour
On a large scale
Impossible without expropriation of labourers,
Corresponding transformation
Their means of production into capital.
The interest of national wealth
Seeks for artificial means
Ensure the poverty of people
Apologetic armor crumbles off
Bit by bit
Rotten touchwood.
The truth as to the conditions of capitalist production
The system of protection at its origin
Attempted to manufacture capitalists artificially
Wakefield’s colonization theory
Attempted to effect the manufacture of wage-workers
he calls “systematic colonization.”
Property in money
Means of subsistence
Machines
Other means of production
Does not stamp a man as a capitalist
If there be wanting the correlative
The wage-worker is compelled
To sell himself of his own free will.
Capital is not a thing
But a social relation between persons,
Established by the instrumentality of things
Two preliminary remarks:
The means of production and subsistence,
Remain the property of the immediate producer
Are not capital
They become capital only
Under circumstances they serve
As means of exploitation
Subjection of the labourer
But this capitalist soul of theirs
So intimately wedded
To their material substance
Capital under all circumstances
Even when they are its exact opposite.
Splitting up the means of production
Into the individual property of many independent labourers
Working on their own account
Calls equal division of capital.
The political economist as with the feudal jurist.
The latter stuck on to pure monetary relations
Labels supplied by feudal law.
“If,” says Wakefield
“all members of the society are to possess equal portions of capital…
No man would have a motive for accumulating more capital
Than he could use with his own hands.
Where a passion for owning land
Prevents the existence of a class of labourers for hire.”
So long, as the labourer can accumulate for himself
He remains possessor of his means of production —
Capitalist accumulation and capitalistic mode are impossible.
The class of wage labourers wanting
A social contract of a quite original kind.
Mankind have adopted a… simple contrivance
Promoting the accumulation of capital
Since the time of Adam,
Floated in their imagination,
The sole and final end of their existence:
Divided themselves into
Owners of capital and owners of labour….
The result of concert and combination
In one word: the mass of mankind
Expropriated itself in honor of the “accumulation of capital.”
This instinct of self-denying fanaticism
Give itself full fling in the Colonies,
Where alone exist
The men and conditions
That could turn a social contract
From a dream to a reality.
But why, then, should “systematic colonization” be called in
To replace its opposite, spontaneous, unregulated colonization?
Nay, the impulse to self-expropriation
On the part of labouring humanity
For the glory of capital,
Exists so little
Slavery, according to Wakefield
The sole natural basis of Colonial wealth.
Systematic colonization, a mere pis aller,
Without labourers, capital must have perished,
Or at least, must soon have been diminished
To that small amount
Each individual could employ with his own hands
The separation of the labourer
From the conditions of labour and their root, the soil,
Does not exist or only sporadically
Or on too limited scale,
So neither does the separation
Of agriculture from industry exist,
Nor the destruction of the household industry of the peasantry.
Whence then is to come the internal market for capital?
The great beauty of capitalist production
Not only constantly reproduces the wage-worker as wage-worker,
But produces always, in production to the accumulation of capital
A relative surplus-population of wage-workers.
Thus the law of supply and demand of labour
Kept in the right rut
The oscillation of wages penned within limits
Satisfactory to capitalist exploitation
The social dependence of the labourer on the capitalist,
Indispensable requisite, secured
An unmistakable relation of dependence
The smug political economist
Transmogrify into one of free contract
Between buyer and seller
Between equally independent owners of commodities,
The owner of the commodity capital
The owner of the commodity labour.
The labour-market always understocked
The law of supply and demand of labour falls to pieces.
On the one hand, the old world constantly throws in capital,
Thirsting after exploitation and “abstinence”; on the other,
Regular reproduction of the wage labourer as wage labourer
Comes into collision with impediments
The most impertinent and in part invincible.
What becomes of the production of wage labourers?
Into independent producers,
Who work for themselves instead of for capital,
Enrich themselves instead of the capitalist gentry,
Reacts very perversely on the conditions of the labour-market.
The wage labourer loses into the bargain
Along with the relation of dependence,
The sentiment of dependence on the abstemious capitalist.
The supply of wage labour
Neither constant, nor regular, nor sufficient.
Supply of labour is always not only small but uncertain
“Though the produce divided
between the capitalist and the labourer be large
The labourer takes so great a share that he soon becomes a capitalist….
Few can accumulate great masses of wealth.
The labourers most distinctly decline to allow the capitalist
To abstain from the payment of the greater part of their labour.
It avails him nothing, if he is so cunning as to import
With his own capital, his own wage-workers.
They soon “cease… to be labourers for hire;
They… become independent landowners,
if not competitors with their former masters in the labour-market.
Think of the horror!
The excellent capitalist has imported bodily
With his own good money,
His own competitors!
The end of the world has come!
No wonder Wakefield laments
The absence of all dependence and of all sentiment of dependence
On the part of the wage-workers in the colonies.
Instead of being dictated to by them….
In ancient civilized countries
The labourer, though free,
By a law of Nature dependent on capitalists;
What is now, according to Wakefield,
The consequence of this unfortunate state of things in the colonies?
A “barbarising tendency of dispersion” of producers and national wealth.[17]
The parcelling-out of the means of production among innumerable owners,
Annihilates, along with the centralization of capital
All the foundation of combined labour.
Every long-winded undertaking, extending over several years
Demanding outlay of fixed capital,
Prevented from being carried out.
Capital invests without hesitating a moment,
For the working class constitutes its living appurtenance,
Always in excess, always at disposal.
Where the immigrant wave often becomes stagnant
Deposits a sediment of “supernumerary” labourers.
“Our capital,” says one of the characters in the melodrama,
Was ready for many operations
Require a considerable period of time for their completion;
We could not begin such operations with labour
We knew, would soon leave us.
Never mind, national wealth is identical with misery of the people.
How to heal the anti-capitalistic cancer of the colonies?
If men were willing to turn all the soil from public into private property,
They would destroy certainly the root of the evil, but also — the colonies.
The trick is how to kill two birds with one stone.
Let the Government put upon the virgin soil an artificial price,
Independent of the law of supply and demand,
A price that compels the immigrant to work a long time for wages
Before he can earn enough money to buy land,
Turn himself into an independent peasant.[20]
The fund resulting from the sale of land
At a price relatively prohibitory for the wage-workers,
Fund of money extorted from the wages of labour
By violation of the sacred law of supply and demand,
The great secret of “systematic colonization.”
“Sufficient price for the land”
Nothing but a euphemistic circumlocution
The only thing that interests us
The secret discovered in the new world
The Political Economy of the old world,
Proclaimed on the housetops:
Capitalist mode of production and accumulation,
Therefore capitalist private property
Have for their fundamental condition
The annihilation of self-earned private property;
In other words,
The expropriation of the labourer.
Capital is a social relation of production.
A historical relation of production
Land, to be an element of colonization,
Must not only be waste, but must be public property
Liable to be converted into private property.
A result of the appropriation of the soil and of capital
Man who has nothing but the strength of his arms
Finds employment and creates an income for himself ..
But the opposite is true,
Thanks to the individual appropriation of the soil
Men who only possess the strength of their arms
Put a man in a vacuum, you rob him of the air.
The same, when you take away the soil from him …
Putting him in a space void of wealth,
To leave him no way of living
Except
According to your wishes
 

Very Different Labour
Beth Ayer

Forget the process
Control the antiquated mode
 
Otherwise,
employ the contradiction
 
To this end
transform,
ensure the
armor crumbles off.
 
FIRST OF ALL
 
A capitalist is compelled to sell himself
 
Not a social relation,
in which time means soul, wedded
to circumstance,
splitting the individual
 
pure—
to some extent
passion—
the mode of production
 
Co-existence
brought about in their imagination
floated in one word:
instinct.
 
Be called in
 
the essence consists in this
secret piece of himself
 
Neither the separation
nor the cultivation of abstinence
 
The great limits to dependence,
that unmistakable contract
between exploitation and
themselves
 
Few distinctly cease
to wonder,
lament the absence of
desire.
 

MoTHer of Colonisation
Elizabeth Ashby

Political economy confuses on principal
The other
The direct antithesis of the former
Absolutely grows
The process of primitive accumulation is more or less accomplished
 
Continue side by side in gradual decay
The more anxious zeal – the greater unction
The more loudly the
Collision, resistance, contradiction
Back power by force
To proclaim theoretical identity
 
Colonies – Clean breast of it
In the interest of the so-called
The merit of – not anything new
In the mother country
 

Mode Politic
Elizabeth Ashby

Two very different kinds of private property
Directly conquered
The notions of law and property
Inherited
In his ideology
Two diametrically opposed systems
Manifest here in a struggle between them
Bit by bit, like rotten touchwood
This he calls “system colonisation”;
Swan production
 

From Karl Marx’s Chapter 33 of Capital: The Modern Theory of Colonisation:
Mary Bast

gradual decay
 
cry out in contradiction between
rotten touchwood and moans
of women and children left without
water, this soul of theirs so intimately
wedded, all picture eloquently
the end of the world.
heal the cancer, root of evil—
violation of the sacred,
wash away squandering of land,
shameless lavishing of capitalists,
gold digging, competition,
the prostitution of the world,
 
the annihilation of self.

842 Capitalist Production
Jenni B. Baker

            ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​                                                  ​​​​​​in
 
                                                          ​​​​​difficult
 
 
​​conditions
 
​​​​​​​​​                                                                                                                     as
 
​​​​​​​​                                                                                                             capital
​​​​​​​​ 
 
​​​​​​​​​​​                                                                                                                                          cultivate the
 
 
 
 
​​​           spinners and weavers
 
 ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​ ​​​​​                                                  ​​​​​​​​​​​​of
​​ 
queer
 
​​​​                         beauty
 

Spanish clothes for America
Natalie Blakely

Queer beauty is ready to enrich the world.
No, this anecdote and culture can kill the virgin.
What a fiasco.
Europe in America is a prostitute proclaimed explorer.’

Chapter Thirty-Three: The Modern
Theory of Regime Change
Lawrence Brock

I carve sin for the export gods
a marksman in feudal fields far
supposed to possess no motive
this hand extends
to all locals remaining
 
our conditions and wages
a floating dream
to all but a splinter
the bulk of people
labouring for the glory of pale slavery
 
I remove the rising lust
each individual seeks in secret vice
a wish all men are free
but at any price
Allah in radical peasantry
 
I follow shadows
carry secret faces
penned in gloomy ruins
beyond my calm recall
“Marg! Bar! Amreeka!”
a constant ricochet
but I’m kiwi
I’m like you
of course
I am
 
insurgents in Pech Valley
the scattered nerves
of medal America
well-to-do
enterprising
cultured
pinned
in a canyon
better fed
but trapped
one stony dawn
before
enough money
flies extraction
 
I taunt fate
in triumph
first as thief
second as keeper
of sufficient violence
ransom for a tired people
this fiasco leaves me
washing huge agonies
tattooed on my memory.
 

The Modern
Kathy Burkett

The West, the home of primitive accumulation.
The capitalist has conquered
this ready-made world.
Notions of anxious ideology
come into collision
with conditions of labor.
 
The contradiction, a struggle between
the power of the country by force
and poverty of the people.
 
Money machines — the wage-worker
is compelled to sell himself.
He moans, unhappy,
understanding exploitation of the soul .
 
A contract of their existence:
they have divided themselves from dream.
Reality, on the contrary,
is very cheap and all
can easily obtain a piece.
 
The population is exclusively
slaves and their employers .
The horror!
The misery of the people.
 

Nostalgia?
Catalina

Ah nostalgia
What a strange word
So sad, and at the same time so sweet
It has kept me company for so long
 
It comes and goes when it pleases
Always leaving me in a different state
Which is so often an inexplicable sentiment
 
It is so poignant,
So unique
Sometimes it will create a sweet longing inside of me
And other times it may leave me with a bitter melancholia
 
I have met it in so many forms
It has disguised itself in so many ways
That its permanent presence in me would not surprise me
 

Modern Theory
Jan Farr

But – but –
this is the secret:
 

oscillation can transmogrify
the pretty fancy,
 
doughtily,
eloquently,
pathetically.
 
Sugar is the price,
Mr. Molinari, Mr. Molinari!

Theory of Gradual Decay
Laurice Gilbert

notions of anxious unction
1
In the colonies
the sycophant compels a clean breast:
 
production proves the power
of co-operation.
 
‘Artificial’ means a servant wedded
to its exact opposite,
 
splitting the labels supposed
to possess passion –
 
essential, wanting, original –
into instinct: diminished, perished.
 
9
The soil forms every settler.
This is the secret.
 
11
The soil does not exist,
nor the destruction of the household.
With such queer people as
smug owners and fancy gentry
exploitation loses sentiment,
though the labourer becomes cunning;
not the end of the world.
 
16
Every undertaking is carried out
without the stagnant cultivation
of American peasants.
Farm-horses are identical with
willing have-nothings from Europe –
a sufficient circumlocution.
 
It is characteristic of fiasco that
emigration was from “untied” states,
accompanied by superfluous men –
a stationary sediment in its train,
squandering centralization. With great strides
prostitution flourishes.
 
The abolition of slavery
A mule is intrinsically money, not waste but property – une quantité équivalente de tous les jours sous nos yeux. Les planteurs ont fermé leurs ateliers. How generous! L’homme trouve l’occupation thanks to the soil, living according to wishes – the first and main object.
 

[Untitled 1, 2, 3 and 4]
Ricki Hunsinger

[Untitled 1] Ricki Hunsinger</a>
<a
href=”https://sociopoeticdotorg.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/image1.jpg”>[Untitled 2] Ricki Hunsinger

[Untitled 3] Ricki Hunsinger
[Untitled 4] Ricki Hunsinger
 

Free Range
Todd King

Property forgets its tomb,
the primitive accumulation
of the strata of antiquated decay,
the ready-made world
inherited from the loud
cry of machinery and its poverty
of apologetic crumbled truth.

Marx Love Poem
Lucas Knotter

On principle two very different kinds
But absolutely grows on its belonging to the other
 
Impossible without the corresponding
Armor crumbles off, bit by bit
 
It is the great merit of free will
Not a thing, but a social relation between persons
 
Soul of theirs so intimately wedded under all circumstances
 
Equal portions of accumulating a passion
Wanting co-existence of a quite original kind
 
Floated in their imagination as the sole and final end of their existence
In one word: one
 
A dream
A reality
 
Spontaneous
Unregulated
 
This is the secret of prosperity
 
Combined at whatever distance
 
Invincible
 
Without hesitating a moment
Glad to have engaged in it at once
They would destroy certainly the root of evil

In Theory
Saradha Koirala

One rests on the tomb of existence.
We cry “Collision!” struggle
between mother, country /clear, contrary
 
then make a clean breast of it
lest the interest, the so-called
crumble like rotten wood.
 
Spinner, weaver, blacksmith, miller
shop-keeper, queer, worker, mother
great beauty torn asunder.
 
In theory
 
One rests on the tomb of existence.
We cry “Collision!” struggle
between mother, country /clear, contrary
 
then make a clean breast of it
lest the interest, the so-called
crumble like rotten wood.
 
Spinner, weaver, blacksmith, miller
shop-keeper, queer, worker, mother
great beauty torn asunder.
 
What becomes of those whose
lives cease to be bodily?
Numbed by long-winded demands
 
s c a t t e r e d unwittingly.
 
A glimpse at, a blow to
the trick: kill two birds with one
inviolate hand.
 

The wave of the world
Ashleigh Lee

Political confuses
forgets it’s only primitive strata,
belonging inherited the anxious
who
are we?
 
Know subsistence,
serve the soul so intimately wedded to their passion
so long
 
Wanting floated in their imagination,
floated in their imagination as they fling a dream
 
Why doubt the people,
himself a slave
his own hands have seen the secret
 
exist only
 
neither the separation, nor the destruction
but always
an unmistakable relation of dependence
 
free,
this pretty fancy is torn asunder
 
laments of sentiment
of the ceaseless stream of men
driven stationary,
sediment in the wave
of the squandering great
 
the stride of shame
lavishing so loudly
the stream of the glut market
 
the only thing
secret
 
is self
 

Systematic Exploitation
Thomas Rimmer

Capitalistic Slavery.
A river of people
follow their own exploitation.
Dispensable commodities.
 
The world is constantly
thirsting after great wealth.
Subservient labourers
prevented from being free.
 
A cancer of men;
the root of evil.
The capitalist.
A ceaseless wave of exploitation.
 
The promised land of the free,
only a few glimpses
before our eyes.
The capitalist stands in the way.

Freedom
Gus Simonovic

 
Wanting
kind,
simple course.
 
Since the time of Adam
imagination floated …
their imagination, as their existence…
divided.
 
The division
concert and combination – one word
the mass of mankind in honor of that instinct
of self-denying existence
to a reality.
 
But why then
replace its opposites,
regulate?
So many people would fall, decompose.
The impulse to self-glory exists
so preserved.
 
Much more than
hands have seen the soil
The essence of a free consists parts of
the same, the secret, the prosperity
the land.
 
Men are free
where one can obtain
a piece of land for himself
share, cultivate, follow, build, weave, secure
freedom.
 
One free, all free!
The absolute world
ready and always thirsting for
certainty and wealth of
the kind,
simple course.
 

Artificial Colonisation
Gus Simonovic

 
Political principle
one or the other,
on-off forgets
that Western Europe
more of less,
continue to exist
side by side,
in gradual decay.
 
To this ready-made world
of capital,
applies the notion,
all the more anxious cry out in this ideology.
 
The regime’s stance
as owner
of his own condition,
labours opposed economic systems.
Practically in a struggle between them
capitalists
force production and appropriation based
on the same interest.
Which compels the capital to
proclaim aloud the antagonism
of the two productive powers.
 
On a large scale,
without corresponding in the interest of the so-called national truth
as to the conditions of the system of protection attempt to manufacture artificial colonization.
 

The ready-made world of ….
Gus Simonovic

 
capital
the political
the notions of law
and of property
 
the regime everywhere
economic systems clear way by force
 
the same interest
expropriation of wealth
to ensure the poverty of the people
discover new systematic colonization
remember!
capital is not a thing, but a social relation
established by the instrumentality of things
 
once arrived at his destination
capitalist soul is so intimately wedded
to their material substance
that he christens them capital under all circumstances
even when they are its exact opposite
 
thus, here
where all members of the society
possess equal portions of capital…
no man have a motive for accumulating
 
this is a passion!
for owning the existence
made possible!
 

[Untitled]
Regan Stokes

in gradual decay,
the political economist applies
the more anxious zeal.

in the colonies,
the mother-country,
by force.

in the mother-country,
the social use of machinery,
the corresponding transformation.

wealth crumbles,
a discovered means of subsistence.

Managing Privilege
Zoi Triandafilidis

Strata of society in gradual decay,
 
Anxious, apologetic moans.
 
 
 
Unhappy with his wealth, he has preserved much more capital than he can employ with his own hands.
 
His accumulation of capital unwittingly fed misery.
 
 
 
How to heal the cancer?
 
How to wash away the pressure to be ‘normal’?
 
So that we are concerned with the conditions of the world.

Prim odes [1]
Mercedes Webb-Pullman

Confuse decay;
ready-made zeal and unction cry
colonies of contradiction.
 
Force the mother breast
to use machines
as a means of poverty.
Rotten system subsistence
is not a destination,
servant bed or water production
are circumstances
wedded to substance,
stuck on law.
 
Equal motives, new passions;
a social contract
promoting time floating
as existence.
 
Mankind itself is self-denying:
fanatic dream, spontaneous fall,
the impulse to glory.
 
Slavery is the last settlement.
Soil forms a free property.
Opposition is free. Difficult root soil
limits industry. Slaves build
their own market, spin and weave
land. Beauty constantly produces
oscillations, torn asunder into
independent selves.
 
Uncertain labour takes unusually long to
accumulate; so cunning this
bodily, end-of-the-world absence.
Law of Nature annihilates
without hesitating, stagnant
sediment of time, engaged for a price;
it would provide a fresh supply of culture,
a horse better fed by misery.
 
To heal cancer, destroy the colon.
Kill virgins, buy peasants, extort law to
grow, triumph. Bring soil sufficient for
ransom; the land, old master, practiced
fiasco of increasing pressure, ceaseless.
Year after year the wave throws war
in its train, squandering railways, mines,
shameless stream of gold.
Prostitution as wanton as our annihilation.
 

Ode to Lonis
Daniel Webster

No rest

The labour of the tomb
Where he has conquered
The long antiquated mode of gradual decay
The cry of Lonis the sycophant
To proclaim a loud antagonism
To prove the impossible transformation
He seeks
 
His armor crumbles off, bit by bit, like rotten touch wood
He moans
 
Left without a servant to make his bed
Or fetch him water
His soul intimately wedded to material substance
He calls
 
To possess more than his own hands
 
The old labourer
By a contract of a a quite original kind
(since the time of Adam)
floated the sole and final end of her existence
Honor, instinct, self-denying fanaticism
Give it full fling to Lonis
He alone could turn
A dream to a reality
 
The glory of perished men is cheap
and pleases easily
 
“Obtain, my dear
at any price
the Root of Destruction
Whence the spinners and weavers make soap and candles
As well as shoes and clothes for their own use.
Queer people!
The field of abstinence produces
That indispensable requisite,
which can transmogrify Lonis!”
 
This fancy is torn asunder.
Constantly thirsting, the labourer comes into collision with impediments invincible.
What becomes of the labourer?
Perversely, indecently
The labourer is so cunning
as to become competitor with her former master.
 
Think of the horror!
The end of the world has come!
Lament, Lonis!
The high disciple
The subservient labourer
A class of being ancient and innumerable
Annihilates every long-winded undertaking
Of unliving Lonis
 
Doleful and stagnant, the wretch is
once again
identical with misery.
 
How, then, to heal Lonis?
To turn the soil?
Destroy the root of the evil?
But also – Lonis?
To kill two birds with one stone?
 
Let the Government
(in violation of the sacred law)
employ Lonis.
This is the secret plan,
Working in combination
to prevent the labourer from coming to
take her place
 
The vilest squandering of the promised land
Advances with giant strides
The shameless lavishing of men
Flourishes wantonly
What then becomes of the ten commandments, of Moses and the prophets
 
And Lonis?
Rob him of the air
Take away the soil from him
Put him in a void
So as to leave him no way of living
 

Of Women
Jen Wilson

Cry out,
All who oppose
In struggle
The sycophant of capital,
The political economist,
The mother-country.
 
Proclaim aloud
The poverty of the people,
The wage-worker,
The other.
 
She is not a thing.
From England to Swan River,
She sighs
Her unhappy subjection,
Her soul is wedded
To material circumstance,
The property of capital,
Of monetary relations,
Feudal law.
 
If all are equal
Let us
Repossess expropriated
Imaginations,
And divide accumulation.
Seeds, implements, cattle, the soil,
The operation of prosperity,
The condition of furniture and tools,
Of spinners and weavers,
Soap and candles, shoes and clothes.
 
In this field of great beauty
In whose penned limits
Exquisite and common
Transmogrify
To commodities,
Where the mother labourer
Thirsts for her eloquence,
Abstain from nothing
That would free her.

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1 thought on “erasure

  1. Love the way this whole erasure process worked and am excited that so many creative writers saw the poem emerge in their own style. Love it.

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