The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

personal bush

getting off of lexapro, sinister celexa, the dizziness becomes stronger
the more i focus on it. it's not so much dizziness as a sudden _shifting_
as if the saccadic movements of the eyes skipped a beat. it's the shifting
of the world, and it's accompanied by ill-forming short dreams, terror,
and emotions close to the surface. tonight for example, the presence of my
mother, dead over three years, was stronger than ever. i have a continuous
memorial light burning here; when the lights are out, it flickers; when i
shine a flashlight on it, it gains strength, sustenance, and burns
continuously. i figured out this is a result of additional imported energy
to the shell levels, but the result appears a miracle, one light feeding
off another. meanwhile the early morning headaches grow worse, imminent
behind the eyes. so you ask why i publish so much, cross-post? because of
my fear of death gnawing at me; everything must be done and done
immediately; there is no time to waste. i know if something isn't produced
and distributed _now_ it will never be; that piece of the puzzle will be
lost forever. it drives me. i'm obsessed with death and because of this
obsession i can also speak to the president and his popularity - the
reason became clear this evening, and sudden. it was in 2001 that my
mother died; that 9/11 occurred; that i lost the job in miami; that i
began taking celexa, the dextrous version of lexapro, full of immediate
side-effects that made me flee. it was an enormous depression, a _thing_
as kristeva might say, and i associate this _thing_ - of depression,
violence, death, of trauma - of post-traumatic shock syndrome - with both
comfort and imprinting; one has reached the limit, and it's there that
memory begins, holds fast, turns to long-term. imprinting inscribes and
circumscribes the thing; it's misery, but it's encapsulated. and during
our nation's weakest collective moment, with the towers falling, bush
appeared, this violent, stupid man created out of sound-bites - and in
that moment just a very few days later, standing in the rubble doing
nothing but feeling heroic, he became part of us, forever associated with
falling men and women, with the simultaneous moment of creation and
annihilation. just as some of us remember the day kennedy was shot, or
john lennon died, or 9/11 itself, so we remember the circumstance of the
man and his masquerade, as they all are, of the phallus, upright in the
ruins. and this imprinting occurred and still occurs within the chora, the
region of drives (the hole in ground zero is referred to as the _bathtub_)
- primordial, pre-linguistic, or the shuddered and stuttering beginnings
of the gesture itself. it's within this imaginary that the image appears,
that bush fumbles to the top, guarantees whatever safety, maternal and
otherwise, there is in the world - it's not a question of policy or his
incipient fascism - _it's not a question at all._ instead, it's a state, a
condition, that of the moment of trauma associated with salvation and the
proper name, beginnings of language from the always already ruined. bush
is here, he's within us, and for many americans, this is a kind of
salvation, ironically brought about in an unstable world bush himself is
partially responsible for. the circuit closes in on itself, strangles. no
wonder he's so far up in the polls, after failure after failure - the
guarantees he offers aren't linguistic, ideological - they're the
guarantees of presence itself, and presence references life, no matter how

in the meantime, it is another long night of memories rising to the top,
of death breathing hard down the body, of a very real fear of attempted
sleep and its onslaught and slaughter. i won't rise to the occasion; i'll
fall to it, out of exhaustion. i'll be held and dropped, but at least i'll
be alive.


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