when i was studying in Bochum
it’s very ugly
destroyed by the Allies
and rebuilt all bauhaus
concrete slab concrete slab concrete sometimes with pebbles embedded in it
one time when i was young
studying in Bochum
die Universitaet Bochum
when I was young
before I met you
one time when i was 24 studying yet again abroad
this time in Bochum
i had this idea:
I’ll go to the bar on the bridge between the dorms and the university
I’ll take a pack of cigarettes and a chocolate bar, a very-chocolaty chocolate bar
and I’ll order wine and space out to the music
and have wine, cigarette (something pure, something all-tobacco) and chocolate all at once.
that was the idea
to feel it all at once
the song “Clint Eastwood” by the Gorrilaz was still way big at that time
and it came in on the bar speakers
I nodded and I felt the chocolate and the wine and the cigarette.
I met some nice German kids
we almost became friends
except for how I was so drifting-off all the time at that time
at many times in the times I’ve had
the truth about men
i guess it is similar to the truth about women
the truth about men
is that they just want their baby doll
they just want to sneak off into the bright skies and melancholy sunsets with her
they just want to slip into bed with her
and wake up next to her
and snuggle into her
and make her happy
and accept the happiness she makes
and everything else
is just shit
that they pretend they want or don’t want
is just stories they tell themselves
they try to make up accounts that allow them to maintain that they have principles that extend beyond their woman and the little world the two of them create and hold and wherein they shelter.
but they know they are lying
so what kind of politics is possible?
what kind of politics is possible for a species like this?
I don’t know, honey.
I don’t know, baby.
Please come here.
Please stay here.
Please be mine.
I’m only what I am.
the politics of romantic love
the politics of people as they really are
the politics of pretending to care
the politics of only wanting one thing: my baby and our babies: my baby and our world: my tiny hamlet with MY wife, MY family, MY friends, MY love is not God’s Love but I pretend don’t I don’t I pretend that holding you sweetly and keeping our pleasure palace together counts — don’t I pretend that that counts as Love?
What kind of politics is that?
because that is the one that exists
Jesus stands above it all
the Buddha too
but you don’t
and I don’t either
maybe for a moment here or there
but then we swell up with the rush of our own grandeur
and fizzle quickly back into the various soft and hard lusts that drive and bound our lives
so what can we do?
what can you and me do?
that’s any good?
maybe we’re not as bad as all that
but how close to all that are we?
what is the insight we can follow, what is the sliver of Light, what is the gossamer thread, what is the touchstone we can follow without corrupting its counsel? Do we feel God within or our own desires that we wish were Gods, were True and Good and Certain, were worthy of the worship they demand?
i guess Something Deeperism still holds true: we can only be meaningful to ourselves to the degree we understand that and in what sense it is True to say we are all in this together; we should feel/think/act aware, clear, honest, accurate, competent, compassionate, kind, generous, joyfully together, joyfully sharing, joyfully together.
I guess that still holds true, but how we slide
how we slip and fall
how we slip into the cozy corner
how we make up stories
how we hold to speeches
how we hold to the textures that allow us to put ourselves and our wives and our children ahead of everything that ever was and ever could be
what politics can work with people as they actually are?
how can people as they actually are push against corruption within themselves, within their small groups, and within their nation states?
I am so lonely
I can’t do this anymore.
I am so lonely
I can’t live like this another day
so now what?
Various authors and editors
copyright AM Watson