Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Addiction as Ecotone - Part 1 - Jane Joritz-Nakagawa

A Brief History of Colonialism - Jane Joritz-Nakagawa

i (the early years)
. . . on the bed, my knees touching the refrigerator
. wherefore art thou. this hotel
looks just like the last one. the last time i was in total disregard of flesh
. it

lasted for what seemed an infirmary. an eternity of colonialism creates a wealth
of subtraction in which your ladle always fits
. i sip up your secret tusk like

pathogenic noblesse one by one. i feel the vertical celebration of misuse
approaching at great speed
, transparent as whim. over absence and

withdrawal, various imprisonment strategies masquerade as prayer, more
or less sustaining this readiness for future monopolies of spaciousness & nostalgia

ii (the middle period)
. . . on the table, my knees
against the wall. wherefore art,
though? this hostel
looks a lot like the last one don't you think. the last time
i was in total
disregard of mesh-like bellicosity lasting
for what
seemed an eternity an inferno of
colonialism made a muck
of collapse in which your pitchfork always fits. i lap up
your secret musk like

pathological nothingness one by one. a
virtual celebration of mayhem
approaching at great speed, transparent as bling over absence and

withdrawal, various survival
strategies masquerade as plans, more
or less sustaining this blueprint for future monographs
of disquiet & largesse

iii (dream of the future)
. . .
on the sofa, my hands
grabbing the table
. wherefore art
has gone no one knows
. this brothel
looks like the last one pretty
much. the last time
i was in total

disgust of .... it
lasted for what
seemed like an umbilical
. an emblem of
colonialism creates a stain
of subservience in which
your cup is always filled to the brim
. i am impaled
by your secret bulkhead
luck like perfectionistic nonsense
one by one
. a
visible celebration of misogyny
following at great speech, trashy as spring, flash over substance

and wherewithal, mysterious forms of
sabotage masquerade as paralysis mostly
sustaining the myths of
speciousness and neuralgia


Jane Joritz-Nakagawa is an Associate Professor at the Aichi University of Education in Japan, and writes concerning this poem: Currently I am reading a book titled Dreaming the Actual (SUNY, 2000), which includes translations of Israeli female poets. One of the poets included, Hedva Harechavi, is described therein as having a "passionate, obsessive, unrelenting" poetic voice. I think much of my recent work, especially those poems and essays which less covertly have as their theme capitalism, war, feminism, and ecopoetics, are written in a voice that could be described in much the same way. Some verge on hysteria. This poem is part of a large series of such works. I thought of using the word "capitalism" rather than colonialism, but to me the word colonialism confers more responsibility, illuminating better the process and the relationships. This poem will be included in my forthcoming (third) poetry book to be titled EXHIBIT C.

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