Robin Blaser
from The Holy Forest
(C) 2009 Estate of Robin Blaser. Used by permission.
from Streams II (1986-1991)    
As If By Chance


    the Private Sector worries me
    it can, the ubiquitous 'they' say, solve—that is, clear up—

the economy, which, at the upper level is called economics—that
    is, confused science and confused theology prancing around
    together as usual, is under the cultural, like oil or gas
    under the hood or roof, and unpredictably disappearing from
    under us

and the political, which, by manipulation, is over the stunned
    polis, in order to manage production, distribution, and
    consumption of wealth; becomes political economy—thus,
    what is under becomes what is over, and vice versa, to define
    realities without earth and sky which are cultural habitudes

and the cultural, which—not limited by high, low or middling—
    is conflict around the creation of reality, and may be
    invisible as thought is, and is neither formulaic—bonded
    like chemicals—nor nostalgic, which is a dangerous and
    transcendent condition, having forgotten that transcendence
    like ourselves is historical, even in dreams

and the social, which is a struggle against dominations and powers
    the society of which is recently made up of those who were not
    previously there

and mass culture, which is new, misunderstood and ungenerous
    about historical consciousness, mirrors privacies that dis­
    solve in soap, and is jubilant, from which sorrow may

and democracy, which is recent, unAthenian, unPeriklean, in­
    complete, and by nature unstable and creative

and the sexual, which is the passionate body of all chemicals

and our ethos, which is the behaviour of one to another, near and
    far—many to many defines character—and is visible—not, as
    the dictionary tells us, 'the moral, ideal, or universal ele­
    ment in a work of art as distinguished from that which is e­
    motional or subjective'—[wow! dissolve that and ethos becomes
    possible action—character for the sake of the action—
    and pathos is there among kindnesses]

and the universal, which is absent from twentieth-century thought,
    according to the poēsis afoot

and technology, which has wild arms, and is human nature unaware
    of itself

and the angels, who became isms and hierarchies in order to im­
    materialize the real things we're thrown up against, as we
    become startled sub-jects—to which I ob-ject

and religion, which, dismissed from the plane of thought,
    gathers godhead in small envelopes of cement, whereon
    the postage changes

and human survival, which, with all its adjectival ironies,
    proposes a social inheritance

and the good, which we know as Goodness! an expletive,
    something added to fill up the whole that has nothing to
    do with it, and which is fragile and our own composition

and love, which is true attention to whatever and sometimes
    some one

and friendship, which is guidance in every attention

    the Private Sector economizes hither and yon, as it was
    a past participant in bereavement and deprivation, as it
    is now a relationship between privies      with the exception
    of an infinitely distant point, as mathematicians
    say, the world as such
, says Castoriadis