Kamby Bolongo Mean River named one of 25 Important Books of the 2000s by HTML Giant

KBMR was named one of 25 Important Books of the decade by HTML Giant. And was a Page One selection of New & Noteworthy Books by Poets & Writers Magazine.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

No news today - Guest Post - Lito Elio Porto

An act of reckoning that has spanned millennia, continents, myriad ethnicities and topographies has concluded: as it turns out, “empire is a waste of time.” As it turns out, time belongs neither to the very poor nor to the very rich – both are captive animals – and empire is a machine that specializes in the creation of the very rich and the very poor. The sterility of empire lies in this. Captivity. While the poor are simply captive – metering out their lives inside of the cage – the rich are captives of the order of captivity: the patenting, fabrication, distribution, maintenance, insurance of the cages, and the obligatory state of vigilance over all things trapped.

Who would’ve guessed that empire would be such a waste of time? But the proof is as indelible, irrefutable as its ubiquitous trademarks: insecurity and desolation. Is there any greater proof than this, the blinding contrast between a state of material repletion and a fully permeated sense of confusion and despair? Of an emptiness so complete that the entire empire moves according to the spasmodic, reflexive contortions of dry heaving?

Who would’ve guessed, among the rank and file, as country after country was being subdued by the awesome clench of hegemony, that with each pair of buckling knees and paid-off acquiescence those same emissaries, bureaucrats, negotiators and soldiers of the rank and file were actively depleting meaning, negating the warm and glowing auras of all of life’s simple exchanges, interactions, and objects themselves for all of the citizenry of empire … leaving life within the empire scentless, flavorless, spiritless, and perfect.

Is there any greater proof that time has, indeed, been wasted than when an individual, alone or in a group, is fundamentally more stupid than when he/she was born? That they literally know less, that they have been forsaken by their own deeds such that they are left with neither information nor instinct? Is there any further need of proof than this: that the daily chores of empire-building leave its technicians and magicians and heirs as not only profoundly stupid and instinctless, but with a distinctly imperial third characteristic: prideful of such stupidity and lack of instinct. That is the imperial condition. That is the most splendid, the most flamboyant, the most spectacularly homicidal wasting of time possible for the human race. And one after another, tribe after tribe, monarchy after monarchy, nation after nation, corporation after corporation, the sworn-in denizens of the world will get in line, hoping to someday embody an utter waste of time.

L. E. Porto's recent work has appeared/will appear in Black Warrior Review, Unsaid, Diagram, Sleepingfish, Action Yes, and The Collagist. Based in Austin, he teaches literature and writing, most recently at U.T. Austin and The New School in NYC. He can be reached at leporto.net.

No comments:

Post a Comment