Thursday, 25 July 2013

Chris Gutkind: Individual and Collective word-work

I’ll try to keep this brief, much has been said already, here and in person and at the conference and elsewhere, and I don’t really want to repeat too much. I’ve liked the contributions. Some very much, there’s some good rigorous thought, and I think practical suggestions of how to go forward, what we might do etc., are the most vital right now. Please give my words some allowance, I tend to talk about these things in general terms, I’m not against specifics, the roots of things and the detail of what we might do, but I like to put things as simply as I can when it comes to politics. And I tend to think our collective work will have more impact if we think as simply and clearly as we can, which is not to say we won't be dealing with complex things and some of our endeavours will also be complex.

I start with the assumption the dominant and prevalent system most people are live in is full of suffering and degrading and not letting us live humanely or fulfilling us as far as we need or nearly as much as we can live, and that we all want radical change, something very transformational, so the question is how we get there and, specifically, how we can help. We are running out of time and vastly outnumbered though it is possible to change things and we have try.

We are meeting as a group so we are wondering what can we do collectively in some form. Already people do good artistic or informative or activist stuff individually and there is a place for that. There are a lot of different approaches in our group, poetic ways and life ways, and that should make us stronger collectively, combining things, as we see fit, as a whole or in various parts. The point is: we are pissed off at the suffering, the rulers, and the bullshit, like the bullshit of some baby the usual interests feel, and shout about right now, who is more important than other babies, and we are all good with words in our various ways, and we’ve all come together, so what are we gonna actually do, together, about it? Is there something we can actually do that might help, make a useful contribution? But together, since we’ve come together, and what is together anyway, what do we mean by that in our situation? I’m not sure myself but we gotta start getting together and talking about it. Some good ideas have been put out and hopefully we’re all thinking about it but I know my thoughts and determination and usefulness in this will be stronger if we talk together and try and figure things out more. We could really be stronger together. Isn’t that the old truth? Even though, and actually because, they are stronger together too, especially since most of them don’t feel they are so together, making oppression. The spectacle is so strong these days, candy-coated god-baby all over our screens, but we have the heads and imagination to anti it and help people consider other ways, what we’re missing and what is better.

I am also aware, though this is intuition, that there must be people like us but doing very different creative things, not word based, and that we desperately need to find these people and work with them as well. As well, there are many poets that have been in far worse societal-situations than us, and maybe we can learn from them, though I am fairly ignorant of the details of such ‘moments’.

And: what can we do that only we can do? So as not to repeat other efforts? Not to exclusivize us, or exclude us from other ways, but rather to work with what we can really do well etc.


  1. "The spectacle is so strong these days, candy-coated god-baby all over our screens, but we have the heads and imagination to anti it and help people consider other ways, what we’re missing and what is better."

    Right on!

  2. Lets get our poetic WAR ON.
    Destroy every reactionary context !

  3. Holy cow, this Connect/Hook guy has a whole blog of reactionary, racist Hallmark verse & he goes around linking it on radical poetry blogs! What a pasttime!