The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

what i learned in my sleep, and everyone is sick

every word i write enters the barque of the dead;
grounded, it goes nowhere. there was more to remember:
the tinnitus, the floaters corrupting vision, carpal
tunnel and my fingers clawing at my throat, as yours
well as well, deliberate forgetfulness passing as age:
i was never born for this, i do not recognize myself
or you, or what came before, or what emerges. i am
inhabited by an other who is nameless, who shall go
soon, dragging me with it, i will be neutral, i will
be gone. among me there is no other, i drag myself,
everywhere word - all these useless words that refuse
to die - but you will be guarantor of their death, of
the disappearance of meaning; the alphabet itself
shall change into sound. i am lost in sound; every
note i plays corrodes the barque of the dead; every
note is a wrong note. i write for myself, play for
myself, hammer away at my own coffin, watch an other
decay, and i am the worst for it. everyone is on this
journey; it is selfish and everyone acquiesces; the
business of the world is idiotic, inattentive, state
of inert existence. every label is a number; every
number disappears. what is a disappearance but nothing
recording, no apparatus, nothing comes farther. i
hate reading about the dead and their desperation; i
hate reading the words of the dead hammered into the
air already changing into poison; i hate hate, which
forbids me the potential pleasure of a few more days,
years, months. i will never be a physicist, will
never learn japanese, understand on any level, the
universe; i will never travel to india or china,
never have the joy of seeing my philosophical writing
published, never travel to another planet, never swim
well, run well, write well, paint well, build the
perfect crystal radio, travel to burning man, listen
again to the unaccompanied very low frequency murmurs
of the universe. i will never again hear clearly,
without the violence of high-pitched sounds taking
over my speech, my music; i will ever put out the
recording i would love to put out, never see or walk
well enough to ascend any portion of the alps again,
never work with dance again. i will be what i always
was, stillborn in a world of motion, ignorant in a
world of knowledge, and i will never learn guqin in a
way that might have pleased the gods; i will never
see or hear the gods; i will walk slowly; i will walk
with a limp; i will walk with a cane or a walker; i
will stop walking; i will not remember my writing; i
will no longer look forward to the inconceivable book
i have already written; i will never comprehend
torture or the fall of empire; i will have already
fallen; i will neither be dust nor the trace of dust;
i might was well be dead; for all purposes i already
would have been dead; for all intents; i am already
dead; why, stranger, there is nothing of me left,
these words are already collapsed into an absence of
language, of meaning, the recuperation of the digital
is a lie and i consider this my epitaph although i am
sure there are others and for a short while will be
others, will be an other, and then that, too, will be
gone: there is no barque of the dead, there is only
substance; substance always thins.

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