Vacuum Poetics, a comedy
by Lonely Christopher
The poet’s problem is meaning. Poetry doesn’t mean anything. How does poetry happen anyway and what function does the poet serve therefore? The definition of creative writing, the taxonomical poetics determining species of creative writing, is the engine of subterfuge that maintains the myth of significance --- poetry is because of what it is not and means because of what it doesn’t. Anyway, all poetry is acceptable. Most of it is actively directed against engagement with the poet’s problem of meaning. The poetics that allows for the influence of the vacuum is terrifying. Think of Beckett: was he stupefied in retrospect by the absurdity of his project, as he neared death, asking, “What is the word?” And Stein’s last words: “What is the question?” There is nothing but the question, the question of meaning. Meaningless, poetry has no history; it never began and won’t terminate. Buadrillard writes, “There will be no end, because things have always already happened. Neither resolution nor absolution, but inevitable unfolding of the consequences.” Constant determination, all the binarisms enabling such sloppiness as this very misguided theme, obscure the irresolution of every argument with the promise of differentiated architectures of ultimate meaning. Meaning isn’t coming for us, not ever. What is the word? Most people think poetry is about the autumn leaves and the delicacy of love. The page erases the guts out of love and leaves a wordy, husk-shaped signifier. Meaning’s blessing is in never reaching creative writing, no matter how resolute the disbelief foundational to students of the writerly pursuit. Poets & Writers is a sad, false church like, you know, those mutants that worshipped the Bomb in “Beneath the Planet of the Apes.” Everything is like that. How does poetry happen anyway and what function does the poet serve therefore?
Poetry is lucky because it has no place in the idiom of mainstream capitalism, as far as this kid can discern. Poetry is bargain bin specials for alcoholic sentimentalists. The great poets don’t matter (so thus with the retards); this must be allowed before they become readable --- this must be a required education in said valueless accomplishments. The creative text we stereotypically most adore, in the canon, Hamlet, is an engine for its own negation --- redeeming nothing, refusing to validate signification or modalities of humanistic connotation, the play chews itself up on the page until there’s just nothing left of it (having become a black hole that ate itself). Creative writing denotes structurally, this is relative, but the honesty of Hamlet is how it realizes the futility of this pageant of textuality (dressed up as objective confidence, or the possibility thereof) and rudely sabotages the formal system supporting its sick game. The great works of art are those with enough awareness to struggle with the vapidity of their formal logic --- or to know well enough to accept it, anyway. Warhol turned everything into surface. He defeated the orotund puffiness of hegemony’s artifice by living there, at its location, like a house, blurting the infuriating slogan, “I don’t know.” Most poetry is but an effigy, assuming poetry doesn’t become until it develops some position on its fundamental unbecoming. What is known as a poetry is more like a symptom of the poetry that has yet to be rendered legible for the subject (reader/writer). An aware poetics dares asking, “What is the word?” and withstands the injurious humiliation of finally getting the universe is a thing of no agency and answers are impossible. Would that were to settle anything! All poetry fails to cease: tough luck.
All this jargon is fake, callow. Institutionalization posits opacity and neologisms qua fucking rampaging Godzilla. A poet is ruined by the wrong education. Since we’re already at the tea party, let’s wallow in absolutes. The most successful artist in history, that we know of, is Henry Darger. When his life’s work was discovered, near his death, he stoically remarked that it didn’t matter what happened to any of it because, “It’s too late.” What does this mean? That’s not the question, sorry. What is the question? The question is what the poet has to work with. Poetry doesn’t mean anything. The poet’s problem is meaning. “There will be no end.” Thus, it’s never too late for it to be too late. There will be poetry as long as there are consequences. Here come the consequences.