I’ve been in a creative rut of late, so I decided to give one of the beats’ favored methods, “stream of consciousness” –which is actually a legitimate narrative mode–a shot. Initially it felt really weird,but I found the process to be something of a relief. I guess now we know why the beats were so enthusiastic about producing cryptic, semi-intelligible writing: it’s certainly liberating.To some degree, the process excuses the product. (If you’re interested in reading some of Kerouac’s dense, authentic work in this mode, here’s a link to an excerpt from The Subterreneans.)
Practitioners of metronomy sculpt folds of ultimatums with shaky hands– a sense of displacement; dozens of satellite clocks. Empire of vicious waiting conquers the neighborhood, claiming lives with spindlebound spiral numbers– you wind down as they wind you up and suddenly you’re out of thread and rollover-minutes and can’t stitch the rips in your jeans or judgement back together. Pants and patience are in disrepair.
All the sand should fall away through the hourglass but it blows back in your face: expectations never changed a thing, high stakes never changed a thing, hope never changed a thing. Arms nailed to the cork-board, push-pins puncture iridescence, wings ripped from sky. Outgrowing incompetence by the eyelash, you feel twisted in a blazer and ugly with ash in your hair. Crippled down to a kneel, looking sideways through your knees into the mirror exposes strange angles of fate.