This installment of Dialogics segues from Part 1, which can be found here.
Heller Levinson’s book, Un--, forthcoming from Black Widow Press this March, will feature further trackings of the Dialogics. For pre-orders and more information, please visit Black Widow Press.
Dialogics: The Dialogics are ongoing conversations between Will Alexander & Heller Levinson. They began in 2001 in Los Angeles over beer & burgers at “The Saloon” on Pico Boulevard. Below is a sampling of recent exchanges.
H: Division, Discard, Disrespect, -- three D’s knotted to a planetary Distemper. Discard in the large sense, . . . the garbage we pollute with, the discard of the Other (Alterity) twins with disrespect for the other. This is nothing less than a Trans-Egoistic Dysfunction, the inability to get beyond ourselves, i.e., the Anthropocene.
A major reason why I rail against banal first person narrative poetry, which is so rampant these days, is that it is not what is called for. Spilling one’s ‘issues’ out is simply another form of contamination, a linguistic pollution, as injurious to our planet as plastic.
I’ve spoken in the X-Peri interviews how I blame Commerce as a major cause of this myopic compartmentalizing. But also our educational institutions – which are commercial ventures -- share responsibility. Departments, refutations & counter refutations, itemization, grading, -- all are intent upon visionary stiflement rather than enlightenment.
At this precarious point in world history, the human animal needs to be pointed there, outside oneself, concerned with the eyes of the ostrich, the cantaloupe, the sea, the eel, snake, kangaroo, cloud, & Ice.
Is it not time, as the Italian poet Bigali beseeched, to chiudo le scuole! (close the schools!).
W: True, the modern temper is analogous with ruin, with perpetual disregard of its true capacity. It is given a-priori compartments to fulfill. It is compelled to fuel auto-regulated animosity towards itself. The glance is thus dissolved by stagnation. The standard view becomes lionized contagion prone repetition and scientific cul de sac. Thus, the lowest properties are cultivated through general access. This being not unlike the barbarity of the Roman circus, it's crowds gorged on suffering and discomfort. This being mind as a dark regressive ant hill plagiarizing it's own self- deception to such a degree, that all spiraling remains stillness, and it's habitats of official genius becomes a corridor where corpses con-gratulate themselves concerning perfection of the in-ambulatory. These are the lawyers, the doctors of learning providing us with gerunds to memorize and falsely confabulate as if they were psychic oxygen.
Meanwhile, the lists of exo-planents lengthens with at least 40 billion of them known to populate the Milky Way as only one galactic example. Add to this a conservative number of a quarter billion galaxies with another 40 billion across this conservative quarter billion figure and our present neural circuitry should snap and leap and begin to writhe in another habitation of itself. This needs be our current possibility. Yet we graduate Magda cum laude in order to compose texts about failed love affairs and utensils to gather stuffing from slain animals. The whole example of intelligence has become a hideous affair designed to self-falsify itself via a dismal array of accumulation.
Will Alexander- Poet, novelist, playwright, essayist, philosopher, visual artist, pianist, who has authored over 30 books and chapbooks. He has read at venues stretching from Rotterdam to Los Angeles and is currently poet-in-residence at Beyond Baroque Poetry Center in Venice California. In addition to this he is a Whiting Fellow, a California Arts Council Fellow, a Pen Oakland winner, an American Book Award winner, as well being both a recipient of the Jackson Prize for poetry in 2016, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from Beyond Baroque Poetry Center in 2018. He resides in Los Angeles.
Heller Levinson, the originator of Hinge Theory, lives in New York where he studies animal behavior. His book, Un--, is planned for Spring publication (Black Widow Press, 2019).