People often ask me “why do you write like you talk?”
And I say “why don’t you talk like you write?”
That’s a lie of course. I don’t say that to anyone, and no-one says it to me.
Is it prose? Is it Poetry? Is it polemic? Is it garbage?
I hope that it’s all four. Any polemic that is too well written is dangerous. Look at Hitler for fucks sake. He couldn’t even write, but still got millions of people to support the deaths of millions of others.
“It’s a rubbish story that doesn’t hang together in a normal narrative like a normal, decent person would write and it’s rubbish poetry that’s interrupted by factual assertions and longwinded digressions into academic gibberish, that itself is rubbish because it’s not referenced and the chains of argument are broken up by random conversational passages, anecdotes and weird pop culture references.”
That’s my pitch to the publishers. How’s it scan?
Thing is, I normally write song lyrics and not much else. In songs you can get away with writing how you talk, cos sometimes you sing a line just like you’re talking, not really singing at all. It depends what you’re trying to do.
“I come from down in the valley, where mister, when you’re young…”
Bruce Springsteen, calling the listener “mister” in the first line of “the river”, potentially alienating at least half his audience, but it makes you listen, if you’re a man, and I guess if you’re a woman too, just for the strangeness of it.
Then, you know, I went to university and everything, mister, and had to write essays, where I just wanted to scream “fuck them! They are a bunch of bastards! Why can’t we fucking get on with talking about how we’re gonna get rid of them??” but they don’t give you marks for that. Marx out of ten, that’s what it’s all about, and that’s the game I played, lot of my friends too:
“This essay is written from a Marxist perspective”. Makes you feel like you’re in soviet Russia, like you’re gonna get shot for not being orthodox enough. But if you master the lingo, you can rag on the system as much as you want. Or you can just criticise other people’s use of the lingo. Seems to be plenty of money in that, somehow.
Who the fuck is paying all these people? Academics throwing revolutionary terminology at each other stops them getting out into the field and finding out how struggle really works. CIA? FBI? Like they did with the Panthers, man, it all fits together…
The CIA are making sure Marxist and poststructuralist lecturers and researchers are employed at universities around the world in order to confuse the fuck out of the undergraduates most likely to take part in subversive activity and channel their revolutionary energies into pointless naval gazing in ivory towers.
I mean, do arms companies or drug companies profit from all this turgid post-marxist shit? Does anyone? Follow the money, people…
Maybe that’s really what it’s all about, Marx didn’t give self-consciousness to the workers, he gave it to the capitalists. “Oh so that’s what we’re doing. Exploiting workers, that’s where the money comes from. Ok, thanks Karl, we’ll get right on exploiting them even harder using your handy formulas.”
The point is, most people still don’t know what the words people like me use mean, so why should I even use them? I do, because they are in my head and they are part of my thoughts, but if I can put things another way, which people are more likely to be able to understand, then I will.
Or better yet, give people a sense of what these fucking words mean so they can do what other people who use those words mean too, and decide whether or not they agree, rather than let it all go over their heads.
So I come up with this weird mixture. And I read a lot of shit like Burroughs, Hunter s Thompson and Kerouac, other people influenced by them or doing similar stuff, and it makes me feel like this is acceptable behaviour, what I’m doing right now. Except they weren’t activists.
Am I even an activist anymore? Maybe not. The times when I was most active were the times I was espousing the philosophy “give up activism”, the name of a zine kicking around the Brighton scene.
Well, whatever, I’m someone with a “critical perspective” which has lead me to read lots of books and texts by others with “critical perspectives”, so that now I know a lot of words with which to criticise things I’m critical of.
Maybe I’m just a critic, of social-economic systems. “No, this one is bad, take it back or I’ll give you such a bad review no-one will ever eat here again”.
I really don’t think I can get away with calling this poetry. I don’t know how the fuck Kerouac did.
Ain’t got no beat to it, fool, any songwriter could tell you that. There’s rhythm in them there syllables. Or there ain’t, simple as that. Rhythm and rhyme. The two Rhys.
It’s just what comes out when you take away the part of yourself that stops you writing how you talk. Fuck a grammar. You get me? Microsoft word didn’t even pick up on that one.
And I don’t talk like this anyway, fool. Who do you think you’re reading?
Just a projection, a fantasy. I don’t exist, I am my minds projection of myself and your perception of that projection. I am somewhere else, something else. Maybe I don’t even exist (ooh, spooky) but I’m pretty sure I do really. So let’s stop being silly about this, shall we people?
This is Beast poetry. Poetry of Beasts, like in the film Where the Wild Things Are. Those are some laid back fuckin Beasts. They know the score, all right. Hip cats, and birds, and other weird things. Like the thing with the head of the bull? You Know?
Last time I took some kind of Trip I had an urge to see it, on my smartphone. People thought I had sold out, others were requesting “gay drum and bass”. It was confusing. But I survived. And this is my story. Uncivilised and even inhumane. Beast poems. Unleashed. BEAST!!!!!!!!!!