Tuesday January 12, 2021

The following are multimodal, multigenre maps of consciousness.

Across these maps run time travelers, world runners

growing and evolving together into ever-larger

circles of trust, connected

via mothership

Heed her words:

Moor Mother, at the end of Circuit City when she

shouts, “You can’t

time travel / Seek inner and outer

dimensions / Without free jazz!”

or on Youtube:

“If you wanna do something / find a way to create it.”

“Singing together / is how we heal.”

Fugitive study leads me to the Dogon tribe. Place matters to Afrofuturists: Chicago is the mothership, and Philadelphia is the devil’s playground. IFA originates among the Yoruba people. Yoruba divination practices make use of an ancient binary system of 256 odus. Charles and Ray Eames’s short film Powers of Ten opens with a couple picnicking in a park in Chicago. Chicago is where police killed Fred Hampton. Chicago is where police beat the future as the whole world watched. Philadelphia is where police bombed MOVE. With our portals and our time machines, let us re-member the past. Let us return these truths to the times to which they belong.

In place of “Afrofuturism,” a term coined by white cultural critic Mark Dery, science fiction writer Nnedi Okorafor prefers “Africanfuturism” and “Africanjujuism,” terms she coined herself. She defines the latter as “a subcategory of fantasy that respectfully acknowledges the seamless blend of true existing African spiritualities and cosmologies with the imaginative.” History is that which, ever-changing even as it rhymes, never neatly coincides with itself. Only in this way can the future be other than circuit city: rote repetition of that which came before.

Sunday January 28, 2018

Lines in a VHS reproduction of a motion picture waver in and out of focus. Let us demand from Charles and Ray Eames an ascent by powers of ten. We are bodies containing within us outer orbits. Passing between scales causes us to lose familiarity with our surroundings. Skulls appear, each of them covered with microscopic pollen: bits of ancient thistle, spiria, and hollyhock. The most complex structure in the known universe looks about itself in awe. I lean forward and whisper, “I am ready to embark on l’avventura.” Sarah and I walk through a distant neighborhood, her recitation of the Norse creation myth interrupted by and postponed on account of other inputs: yipping dogs, passing cars, the buzz of a circular saw. I despise all forms of imprisonment, but long for silence and solitude. Otherwise we’re just organizing behavior in pursuit of points. Dumb competition, a brake upon potential, stripping us of right-of-way.