Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Lyrics for Kruk //// Hölderlin after Meinhof

Fuck it. The sun is doing whatever suns do
The citizenry all creeping like flowers.
Idiots. The sky is grey on further grey and
The haunting, its sharpened hail, never stops.


Oh wow. A single life-time. We crawl about the earth
As if the sky were an image, or something special, as if
Never mind. Flowers for example. Try eating one. But
Don’t get me wrong. I’m just like everyone else.
They keep their gold in me, the dullness of riches. Beware it.


What did we really expect. I mean, we look at clouds
Are impressed by thunder and
                                                                     The invisible.
People eat it like they do famous persons.
Carbon. Indigestion. Property. Watch that shit.


But it was only pills made me queasy. That
and flames underfoot.
                               The cities have almost vanished
we list them like molecules. Lesions. We list them
every morning like describing a shadow is mania
To inhabit a name. To eat human flesh.


You think its imaginary. Maybe so. Try telling that
to the fortune tellers. You know the ones. Those
who never think or say an original word. Their
vocabulary is monstrous.
                                       Ours too. I love the cities
as they so predictably burn, the sound of ash and
yes this talk. Of music. Of soul. This so brief life.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

grievance: three after Katerina Gogou

Our houses are packed so close
They are no longer houses. Get that.
These our beds these our scraps of food
We eat with the same mouth. We no longer
Use our bones. We are desperate we are fabulous
we are Possibly dead.

                        4 in the morning. Sleep fuck get high
and that monster in the sky taking our details.

Ghosts walk at noon. Everyone’s a weapon.


                            There is no time. Our houses
concealed, like songs, mumble to themselves
The stars are not stars, the city sounds not
city sounds. The sirens, the cops, however,
they are real as algebra or teeth are real like
Lazarus who never even lived & like a plague
or like a loved one’s shadow Here I am alone


this is me puking in the metro

my name is Katerina I have been dead
for all your life. you can buy my clothes
if you like, in the vintage stores, in the
renovated flats, you will find them, in

my senses, enraged, form cracks
the cities I sleep in no longer there

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

serotonin: after Katerina Gogou

Today they cancelled the carrion birds
and we are in love and sleep in peace.
There are cops inside our pillows.
Try and say their assassins work for us.


He chooses things. My things. The
men I fuck and. Thing I know is
               your thighs are my thighs
He’s behind me. Walks toward me
his head is shaved. There are no stars.
Took pills. He’s on the stair is. Took pills.
Says he’s an anarchist. Knows nothing.
He’s a British cop he’s. I don’t give a fuck
you see I. Kind of love Him he tells me
things I have never owned A mirror.
No. I won’t go out tonight. Never.
Don’t speak. It’s not going to be ok.


Three days awake I can’t find the door
already morning half the people here
totally on fire. The rest are made of stone.
Me too. Three days awake. Three days dreaming
scratches our faces this place too. Talk
of bones and fire in the suburbs. Don’t change.
Don’t worry. If you don’t sleep you won’t see it.


Please don’t cry don’t. Music is lovely and
Show me the money. Talk about
the rent. That thing. Photosynthesis. Piles
of money-rent. And pills and arching bones
no. Not even bones. Just cracks. Don’t
answer the door. These constellations.
Don’t open it. That legitimate star.
These bills these final demands.


Every day I wake up everyday inside the wage system
inside all its houses, never paid rent on even one.
Sleep nowhere. Every morning inside my wages
I lie in wait for those who sleep, I sleep
on their chests and never speak. Never
Take this as spectral evidence. Meaning. Fuck death.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Letter Against the Language

God has chosen precisely what does not exist in order to reduce to nothing what does exist – St Paul

The criminals of the Vision are a totally different matter – Pasolini

So I moved to a new country, a new city, and I have to admit I like it very much. The effect is not dissimilar to tearing your name off your face, to finally stumbling onto the secrets of archaic techniques of invisibility. Or at least that’s what I tell myself when I’ve been awake for several days. Invisibility being, in its simplest meaning, visibility amplified to the max. Anyway, when I first arrived I walked everywhere, at absolute random, sometimes with eyes closed, sometimes open. When you feel that alive, meaning not alive at all in any sense that you’ve become used to, meaning absolutely and utterly lost, well, the distinctions between dreams and sight, between whatever it is that waking and vision are supposed to be, become pretty much meaningless. For a long time I was simply scrambling around in the more popular parts of town. Not really sure, to be honest – I mean, they’re popular for a reason and its not necessarily one I’m particularly sympathetic with. So I started venturing further out to the strange external circles with the weird unpronounceable names – and by that I don’t mean unpronounceable simply to a person who doesn’t speak the language, but even to the people who live there. There are some strange red doors out there. Some pretty strange landscapes. For some reason I started thinking about Pasolini. To be specific, the scene at the end of Theorem, where the father – having given his factory away to the workforce, and then having tried and failed to pick up a boy at a railway station, takes off his clothes and wanders off into some strange volcanic or desert landscape and, as he enters that landscape, he screams. I was ranting on to a friend a few days ago that I take that scream to contain all that is meaningful in the word ‘communism’ – or rather, what it is that people like us mean when we use that word which is, as we both know all too well, somewhat different to whatever it is the dictionary of the visible world likes to pretend it means. You know what I’m saying. A kind of high metallic screech. Unpronounceable. Inaudible. I’m obsessed with Pasolini. I stuck a naked picture of him on my office wall earlier on today – it helps, it helps when I’m trying to think about that scream, about toxicity and audibility, about the weird silence I live inside right in the middle of the deafening din of this city I’ve convinced myself I might have come to love. Some academic once wrote of Pasolini that we “should turn down the volume on his political sermons and listen to what he whispered in his work”, which is obviously pretty stupid because the politics are precisely within those whispers or, rather, those barely audible screeches. I guess you must be familiar with his unfinished St Paul screenplay – the bit where he quotes Corinthians on “hearing inexpressible things, things we are not able to tell”. I got really obsessed with that for a while. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not about to disappear into some kind of cut-rate Cloud of Unknowing, or worse, some comfortably opaque experimental poetry. I mean, fuck that shit. In the last essay he wrote, Pasolini made it pretty damn clear what might be implied by “inexpressible things”, things “we are not able to tell”. It is names. “I know the names”, he wrote, in that essay published in 1974. The names of those who sit on the various committees. The “names of those responsible for the massacres”. The names of power. The forbidden syllables. The names of those whose names it is impossible to pronounce in certain combinations and continue simply to live. And obviously, this has very little to do with what certain idiots still call “magic”, which means it has everything to do with it. But anyway, I was thinking about all of this and all the while I kept walking further and further out of town, in wider and wider circles, until my own interior dialogue, if I can even be accused of having such a thing, seemed to come at me in a language I could no longer commit to, or comprehend, or even hear. Perhaps I could smell it. The limitations of the olfactory spectrum don’t get nearly enough attention in all the chatter we endure about the “theoretical senses”, logically deranged or not. But anyway. Things we are not able to tell. Inexpressible things. Accountability. Transparancy. Blah blah blah. Hölderlin called it the nefas. You know? Mystery cults and so forth. Revealing the secrets etc. The saliva of judges. Chewing on gristle and bone. And we could, if we wanted, I thought to myself, spinning round and round in 920 degree circles, we could translate that whole thing into geography, so those spittle-flecked unpronouncable syllables would become the sheer disks of unliveable landscape. The death-cell. The plague-pit. The city of the sun. Utopia. All of the dreams of all of those dry fuckers who neither believe nor remember their dreams. “For that is the tragic with us”, wrote Hölderlin, sometime before he wandered off into the mountains and had his head split apart by god knows what infernal statistic, “to go away into the kingdom of the living in total silence packed up in some kind of container, not to pay for the flames we have been unable to control by being consumed in fire”. Quite a metaphor, yeh? And one whose implications go further than anything Hölderlin would have been able to recognise. I mean, right now. “The kingdom of the living”. “Packed up in some kind of container”. “In total silence”. As the borders are going up. As the teeth are being sharpened. And as I walked I wondered whose “the kingdom of the living” was, and whose was that “total silence”, and if the inexpressible names that Pasolini had almost uttered were of that silence or not, and if those who had, or possessed those names, were of the living, or not. Because sometimes in Pasolini’s work, in the late work, it seems as if utopia itself is the necropole, a ring of slums, a circle around the city, a “force from the past”, tearing up the present, a fever-desert, coming from the future, at inexpressible distance, inconsolable. And that screaming factory owner, in the last scene of Theroem, was he screaming because he was entering the “kingdom of the living”, or because he was leaving it. I don’t know. It isn’t even a scream, not really. More a dead thing, a powder-rasp. And as I was thinking this I suddenly realised I was no longer walking, because there was nothing to walk on, or through, or anything. Vague impression of a ring of houses or bones. Vague sense I could enter into any one of them. That no-one would stop me. That I would be as invisible as any living person, as any corpse. That’s right. Rimbaud. Anyway. Like the bourgeois I am I went looking for a bus-stop. But I couldn’t find one, so like the person I used to be I lay down in the filth of the road and did my best to ignore whatever conformist signals the stars were trying to throw my way. As in, none whatsoever. Like a rough and aged bedlam sheet. The wage relation. The pennies on my eyes. And the sun coming up. Or maybe it wasn’t. Maybe someone had smashed it. Like the blinded eyesight of the living has been smashed. Like the ‘total silence’ of Hölderlin, ecstatic and packed with noises, has been smashed. But whatever. It seemed I was sitting on a bench somewhere, with some old guy, sharing a beer with him, all thin and vacant bone, and the language we were using wasn’t English or German or whatever the fuck language a person is supposed to use in this the kingdom of the living or this the kingdom of the dead and, well, I was ranting on to him about Pasolini, about how in the last interview Pasolini gave, just hours before he died, he did admit to a belief in magic and how that magic was not simply in knowing how to pronounce the so-called unpronounceable names but, more to the point, in knowing how to translate those names into sheer anger, which means the knowledge of how to inhabit the word “no”, its landscape and its geography. Not of course the pinched “no” of border-guards and the rest. But “no” as in the opposite of the sun. And I don’t know if I was even using words at all, or just some kind of structure of barely audible screeches, but I was still going on about Pasolini, about his poem “Victory”, where he has the bodies of the Partisans crawling out from their graves and marching, with all the silence of that simple word “no”, into the cities below. Horrified by what they find there, by the residue of what they thought they died for, they turn around, clamber back into their holes in the earth. And though its a poem of great bitterness and defeat it still carries within it a sense of how to continue, of how not to capitulate, in the face of whatever it is that is breaking our names apart, our names, shattering them, until their meanings change into something terminal and alien, alien as the pitiful groan I mumbled as I stood up and staggered back to my temporary flat in one of the more fashionable areas of this hopelessly gentrified and haunted city. I did a shit-load of speed, stared into space for a while, then wrote you this. Hope you don’t mind that I haven’t been in touch for so long. We are not completely defenceless. We have not yet been consumed in fire.

Friday, December 04, 2015

New Book: Letters Against the Firmament

get it here

"Letters Against the Firmament is a user’s report on the end of the world, a treatise against Tory terror, a proposal for a new zodiac, a defence of poetry, a hex against the devourers of planet earth."

Saturday, November 07, 2015


Five points on the map. Five days
You watch your city burn.
Five A.M. Five cops at the door.
Interpret that. No city is built again
Your map a declaration, a trap, a war.


Divination. Inhuman fears of the people
This distance, an arrangement of songs
scattered on the capital, a set of laws
to kill the living. Rhymes, this distance.
Ruins are barricades. Songs are bones.


Our maps, almost, are conspirators
all night awake, questioning the sky
Comets, also, are bones. Are waiting
to crash our adventure. Days pile up
Like collapsing towers. Cops. Bone.

crossed out Bakunin. wrote down five cops.
5 a.m. - a charm to consume the capital.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Poems after Katerina Gogou

I would like to spin a eulogy / of filth, of poverty, of drugs and suicide . . . drugs, disgust, rage - Pasolini

 Benzodiazepine. Give me the prescription
and I will be you. I’ll pretend to be you
and if i cannot, well, I’ll tell you about your walls
the interpretation of the cracks, divination etc
you probably don’t wanna know. give me the paper
its fine I’ll never remember a thing.
you’ll say things tomorrow I’ll have said them last week.
just right. I know explosives. magic I know and dialectics.
just write the fucking prescription ok.
I have conversations with the dead

let’s drink with the unemployed
with all sun and silence
with all dust in the sun and silence
and sun and cognac and dust
and cigarettes and sun
no, lets not go on about our health today
pills and drink and snot
don’ worry
I feel very calm
there are nails there is hair there are years
the pills are great. the party, you know which one I mean
impossible to tell whose a cop these days
the cognacs shit
no, I haven’t heard anything for quite some time
you know I’n thinking I might want to, you know
there’s a room upstairs
I want to see you without your pants
kind of curious about your dick
music, for chrissake
you take a solo
“they took a stick and beat me”
you pullout your switchblade start slashing
The Bonnot Gang were right.

There are four cardinal points.
The first is the sky, it is where they have buried us.
The second, the earth. There they question us. It is very silent.
The other two points were recently taken out of commission.
No explanations were offered

one day I’ll come out from the houses
I did it yesterday
no thought for anything
one small shred of my father
a tiny piece of the sea
no-one can take them from me
the city they fucked like a dead friend
so many dead friends
one day I’ll come out from the houses
straight into powder and flames
I did it yesterday
you fascist bastards
you pig bastards
red banners barricades black banners
a new city a new kind of sun
one day I’ll come out of the houses
and listen I need to tell you
don’t think I’m afraid when I tell you
they got me. don’t do it. they got me.
reinvent time. reinvent violence. then
listen, go at those bastards like the furies.
only then will you disappear
only then will you learn the magic
a tiny shred of childhood and ocean
one day I will come out from the houses
a strangers language of rags and dreams
and the loneliness, the disappearance
oh god the loneliness. I mean
what do you think I am
some kind of fucking cop


Loneliness does not meet for lunch in Selfridges
nor does it stroll abstract and satisfied thru the V&A, for example
it doesn’t understand Beethoven
or even the Beatles, for that matter
never gets nostalgic over memories of its mother
its ribbons its straw hats its oh-so-middle-class morphine
loneliness is not white
loneliness is up for sale. loneliness will clean your toilet with her fucking tongue.
oh god I’m swearing again.
loneliness turns up drowned on the front pages as refugee porn and is three years old
loneliness queues up politely for a boot in the face for black eggs and poisoned ham
loneliness crawls up from the desert her mouth filled with salt and grain
is marked out in inches like cattle and real estate
humiliation pain humiliation pain
is laughing and is very silent
loneliness crawls out from the ocean her mouth filled with sand and glass
loneliness knows your passwords
humiliation pain humiliation pain
destroys private property. knows all your music is prison.
knows all of your language is prison. all of your seconds are prison.
knows western weapons.
knows european oceans and blood-clots and fucking shit.
loneliness is screaming is smashing your windows with boots and chains
loneliness is dancing barefoot on tables in bars where they hate you hate you
is holding in her bruised and ruined hands a very sharp axe
is hanging over your head
is swirling over your head
is lonely is lonely and loneliness is power is sharpened and bloodstained is swirling is swirling

sometimes the door opens I’m terrified
you are dressed in white your face is white
you force open my hand place coins there
I never move never every morning
you know exactly where to find me
a long time has passed my nails are filthy
they are long and sharp I terrify my friends
I have no imagination
coins in my hand they frighten me
every day I cook potatoes
every day they call my name it terrifies me
I know they want me to betray someone
I keep their voices close to my face
I know they change the words
I’m frightened of the voices because the voices lie
they told me they shot you in the legs
I know they never shoot in the legs
they shoot in the head
they extract the mind
just keep it together, love. keep moving.

Someone has taken our knives. We go down like the sun. Place of birth. Unknown. They have scratched away our slogans. Colour of eyes. Unknown. We go down like hail and rain. Year of birth. Fuck it. Next time they shoot us, we’ll refuse to die. Its raining again. Give me a cigarette.

we’ll cut ourselves down
they hung us yesterday
no escape from the massacre
this whispered ‘no’
liars. informers. murderers
squealing ‘yes’
always ‘yes’
no escape
always ‘yes’
        this whispered “no”
        this rotten world
        this world we loved

Please don’t cry. Time will come.
Bear that in mind. Remember.
Don’t look at me. Don’t cry.
We are gathering the pieces.
There will be no locked doors.
No officials, no murders, no slaves.
Sometimes we’ll speak in colours,
in musical notes. No passwords,
no secret codes. But remember,
serious, keep a pill in your mouth.
Keep it there, these words there:
solitude, profit, humiliation, suicide.
That’s the dictionary of history.
When they shoot it at us, fire back.
I can’t lie. Things will get harder,
but keep at it. Despite our violence
our addictions. All this burning earth.


Fearful we’ll abandon our history or steal it. Fearful we’ll set up borders around that history. Fearful we’ll drive up the rents on that history and talk and talk about the old days in meter and rhyme while the pigs close the borders. Fearful we’ll be those borders. Fearful we’ll confuse those borders with songs and sit inside those songs as if they were the scars on our veins. Fearful our scars will become a lullaby and that we will turn into dogs. Fearful we’ll confuse dogs with doves. Fearful of doves and swans, of corpuscles, of medical robes, of silence and smack. Fearful we’re doing what they want. What silence wants. We police their borders. They know how it is. Fearful bastards. Fearful of everything. All of us. Fuck it. Do it tomorrow. No escape from the massacre. 

We are being followed. They are hunting us, are mostly silent. Lines of them, they are hunting us. Their sentences, relatively simple. Our hunters, our educators. It is very simple. We don’t mention the silence. What we keep inside our whispers. In our signals, in our silence. As each of their faces change. As each of their cells divide. In great procession, the faces. Their lessons are endless. Silence, in circles, our hunters. As if we were dogs. As if we barked at strangers. And now they will murder. There is safety in murder. Somewhere are angels. Angels have claws. Dogs are everywhere.


music, I don’t talk about it
my eyes. seriously. where are my eyes
every day there’s something to reject
I will not scream when I die
Marx Lenin Trotsky Luxemberg
The Kronstadt Massacre and the dream of Sisyphus
there are flowers there are colours
revolvers and homemade bombs
I’m going crazy, why aren’t you
my dreams my friends dreams
all these dreams are the same dream
repeated breakdowns endless weeping
puking spirits loathing
every morning I have to apologise for something
coke, raki, smack
this is measure
you and me
up and down
and back and down
we understand everything, those stupid bastards
private property newlyweds money
newlyweds money prisons terror
they have spit at us
old comrades are dying every day
kids eyes just get bigger and bigger
riot cops, UKBA, new glass, the border
there is a false symmetry separates us
lets not laugh
if we don’t sign the paper
they won’t be able to act on their decision
night falls
the central committee, rape apologists, maoists
night falls
they want to know if I have a television
night falls
I’m still kind of keeping it together
I won’t sign
Long like the 204th International

and we collect little pieces. of resistance etc.
don’t talk to me about fragmentation. it is
rain. talk about rain. Durruti had it right
transubstantiation. rain. metallic burning rain.
red rain. crowbars. the richter scale is
a calendar. bones piled like rain beneath the earth.


40 degrees in the shade. 40 below.
No-one was ever born here.
Fascists and charitable organisations
have made an agreement. They have bought up the city.
They have poured oil on us.
They talk about rats. And houses. The contractors
And the cops, of course
like voyeurs
Fucking them. They talk about the houses.
They are breaking up the houses
They have tied you to the bed with your legs and face.
Its how they put up the rent. How they get us out.
They change our names. Elect us. Pour oil on us.
The streets names. Our names. They burn our names.
40 in the shade. 40 below. Our mouths are swollen.
No-one was ever born here.
A stone. Beneath it, that liar the sun.


that there are houses
on grand roads, we know that
and we used to know
in the silence and dawn
of bottles, and pass codes
never would we live there
hating the roses, fearing them
we knew the address of each one
we had the blue-prints, everything
we talked
minute to minute
we talked
wire to wire
of what we would say
at the pre-ordained moment
class vengeance, we understood
futuristic and ancient, as
all of history, as
one click, as
some kind of message
left on the table
                like a packet of fags
in an overheated kitchen
not even the ones I used to smoke
squealing, yeh, thanks a lot
you destroyed the wrong world
pack up your roses, asshole, get out

On an undisclosed date she was spotted leaving the house setting fire to every cop car she saw. At a synchronised hour she was known to be transporting weapons to anarchist-communist groups in the Middle East, to be working with refugees in Calais, at every border in the world, to be distributing certain classified documents relating to the blood-stained and medieval predilections of David Cameron, Theresa May and Jeremy Hunt. Last spotted wearing one red and black military sweater, one pearl necklace, fists clenched inside the pockets of a somewhat dirty borrowed jacket. This is a note on how to become numbered among the ranks of the invisible.

I think of my friends as blackbirds
screeching from rooftops
murdered by rising rents . we survive
at random. pissed out of our heads
in songs in squatted bars
with pills and needles. to get some sleep
to stop dreaming
interpreters. commies. thieves.
we wake in the same bed. with bedbugs
with trackmarks I love my friends
we dream and never sleep
cocaine into Marx
plague into Bakunin
murdered by rising rents. we screech
from broken rooftops
I think of my friends as blackbirds
as wires stretched from city to city
nailed to the front of the houses
in borrowed dresses and migraines
in silence. lines of speed. of wires
of STDs and bedbugs and microscopes
we fall in love with killers
we survive at random
no ambulance
broken glass. telephone. silence
I think of my friends as blackbirds
Marx and Bakunin. always on the move
the city has been stolen
always on the move
murdered by rising rents
all of my friends. dressed in black
in silence. antibiotics and broken roofs
speaking in code. always in code
plain speech is only for lying
my friends are blackbirds. are wires
tight around your hands. your necks
you capitalist shits. your necks
my friends are wires. are blackbirds

Don’t let me sleep I’m dreaming. They walk toward me the dreams the phantoms it is lonely here. They walk toward me the dreams the melodies the harmony is wrong. It is lonely here. The years are pebbles and they’re blocking my mouth. The years are coins each one stamped with a separable sun. First sun Kobanî. Second sun Calais. The dreams are lines they are suns their angles are vicious their voices are thin they are phantoms their voices shatter glass. They are thin phantoms they speak inside our mouths. They speak inside our mouths in Haymarket in Kobanî. The dreams are years are pebbles a system of inaudible suns. Third sun Tottenham. Second sun Calais. The harmony is rage the dreams are hunting us down. First rage Ferguson. Second rage Gaza. They are thin phantoms they are bursting suns they are blasted glass. Now they take aim. Now they murder. Dreams are a means of speaking. Glass is a means of screaming your nightmares down.