For Soft Architects

Lisa Robertson



(a didactic)

(because the present is not articulate)

Sit us on Lucite gently and we will tell you how knowledge came to us.

First the dull mud softened resulting in putrefaction, lust and

intelligence, pearl globs, jeweled stuff like ferrets, little theatres of

mica, a purse containing all the evil smells of daily life. Then just the

one vowel, iterate and buttressed and expiring; leaning, embracing, gazing.

It devised with our claw identity for the sake of food. Selves, it says,

feeding us, I adore you, you know. Like a boy blowing from a tree, we

decided, we were paid, we were free. We incessantly prepared for the

future. On the title page, two angels blowing on the trumpets of fame held

up a globe decorated with three fleur-de-lys and topped with a crown. We

learned habits and tricks; we faked happiness and relief. We were a single

grin with lips pasted back. We said we saw Europes of hallucination, fatty

broths sprinkled with deer, stenciled eagles, serpents and lurid rags. That

was a format of saying, a frayed ligature. We were fading into the presence

or absence of food, of sleep, of doubt.

Enough of the least. Doubt wants no space. Sincerity takes too long in an

aggressive emergency. The present is not articulate. Also we feel a sense

of duality. We wear out the art. We start to modify our vocables-- flick,

pour, dribble estrangement's sex. Since it is we who are one, and we who

are scattered. We're this pair or more that can't absorb one another in a

meaning effect. We feel palpitated by daylight and its deliberate plants. A

description makes us. Among all these ejaculations and judgements we feel

its elsewhere sculpt our body.

We would be walking down the street in the poetrycity. Gauze would be

everywhere. The day would be big, halting, gracious, revocable, cheap. We'd

be the she-dandies in incredibly voluptuous jackets ribboning back from our

waists, totally lined in pink pure silk, also in pure humming, and we'd be

heading through the buildings with knowledge—that is, ephemeral

knowledge, like leafage or sleeves or pigment. The streets are salons that

receive abundantly our description. The soft buildings are charming. And

our manners are software. We feel sartorial joy. We'd be at the river

watching the fat water lap the blonde built part, loving temporal

improprieties, the bright trash floating in slow liberation. We'd be

applying our make-up at noon by the river, leaning on the balustrade,

thinking about a little shun, a little fight, a little sofa. We'd be

thinking about hinges. We'd feel for our pen. Something might seduce us. A

likeness. Samesame pouring through it.

Knowledge comes to us.



Issue One
Table of Contents