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A Symbol for your Wounds
Selection from "Fort & Da" by Kane X. Faucher

Speculation is anathema to direct action, it is said.

Culture experiences anxiety in the face of a vacuum. I should know, as such a vacuum of being, of culture, of experience, a suction-machine par excellence that attracts the baggage and debris of our airport sample society of pop culture ballyhoo flying straight through my eyes, my cranium from all support networks of reality television blah-bland. But this culture despises the uncoded space, and attempts to deny it by reterritorializing its ground. There has been much talk of landmarking the now exposed space left there by the agitation of a smashing event. It is our narcissism—little more—that dictates that we are rebuilding according to our ineffable will, painted as a staunch thing in SA grab grey or popular furniture décor pastel greens and blues. In truth it is our anxiety and our desire to abolish all traces of our vulnerability. Our business as usual mantra is not derived from a stoic resolve, but rather our attempt to graft the fiction of an unbreakable will upon a desire to forget that we are in fact quite fragile as a people and a nation. Words of bravado, going to their limit, only going so far, and positivity only compensate for our social hyper-nervous cortex. The strategy has worked in the past: our fear of nature and its seemingly untamable chaos has been paved over with our Reason…highways and cities. We make the earth intelligible only through our fictions. The more we preach of our overcoming of the event, the more we expose the delicate nerve of our lack of confidence.

What we imagine ourselves to be—our cohesive unit of strong-willed individuals who all vote, pay their taxes, eat chocolate on Christmas and Easter—is perhaps said to be strengthened by our filtering of the imaginary into the concretely symbolic: the flag, the Constitution, the unity of our states and the animal totems (that we ripped off from the Greeks and aboriginals) to represent them.
But there is still a lack of signifiers to make our unity whole. What we have as a whole is this hole—one so large that others could, say, fly a plane or two through it. A grid of symbols is not enough to function as a net, nor is it enough to speak of a true unity. Something is missing, and it is the people. Where did they go—Or, were they ever here at all? Symbols do not win the day…They do not win the struggle between what we are and the things around us…Symbols only open us up to the rigidity of our imposed fictions. Symbols only shackle us to the illusory feeling of relief that our superficial wounds are mended, but we are hemorrhaging fiercely within. The symbol, the flag—just a Band-Aid on a wound we haven’t the fortitude to close, or understand in its most profound causes—we can only cover it up. We wrap our serious wounds with little more than a flag-shroud of national symbols and corporate sponsorship decals and brave words which only grant false to all of us lying here in the filth and shit of near-death. But when we are so predisposed in trafficking and speaking in symbols, any attempt to speak behind or beneath them runs the risk of being inaccessible, perceived as cryptic or even unpatriotic.

If patriotism equals unquestioning faith in mere symbols of the State, then I am no patriot. In fact, I would be an exemplar candidate of the misuse of democracy, thereby strengthening the case for fascistic control—where it seems that the symptoms of our current design and decline are leading us. I only read the indicators and go mad with all the pretty lights beeping like blood-pour profusion, O God, so many bulbous wounds of blood and all of us roadkill to history, and, and, and, night sky screaming, ripping fire, and storms across the seas, and warbling words of our Father Who Art the Fuhrer!
We have not deviated far from the bland question of what happened and how, which is why my stubborn question of what does it mean gains no purchase on the ears of those obsessed with the plain metrics of Whodunit, who died, who is culpable. Could it have been prevented? That’s not the point. The point is: what does it mean? I really want, need to know. A failure to respond? An election item? Even these questions lead prematurely to answers too reflexively given, to solutions that irresponsibly graze the surface of meaning and eventually undo the question. Our current solutions to problems only resolve the particularities of actionable detail, and exacerbate a global situation on the verge of screaming itself inside out.

Speculation is anathema to direct action, it is said. I am told by reactionaries that the event deserves an immediate response, that it is simple and instinctual, on a level of pure violence; speculation only delays and so has no place in something so palpable.
Check the heartbeat of a dead building. Tick tock. Tick tock.
I was handed my walking papers. My bank account drained. As we all know. You might say that, for a time, I lost my mind somewhere in that wreckage.
"Kane X. Faucher" <

Bio: My work has recently appeared in the last month in Jacob’s Ladder 3 (an anthology devoted to James Joyce), Exquisite Corpse, Ink Magazine, Starving Arts, Me Three, Variaciones Borges, Angelaki: Journal of the Theoretical Humanities, Azimute, 3711Atlantic, and forthcoming in Azimute (another piece), Janus Head, Poeticinhalation, Quill and Ink, and Zygote in My coffee #9. As well, my novel, Urdoxa, will be out in the open courtesy of Six Gallery Press in autumn of this year. I reside in Ottawa, Canada, am a refugee philosophy graduate, novelist, theorist, and illustrator with interests in the works of Louis-Ferdinand Celine, Jorge Luis Borges, Jacques Derrida, Gilles Deleuze, William H. Gass, Wyndham Lewis, Georges Bataille, and Will Self.
From the margins, deploying streams of text,
Kane X. Faucher
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