So I get up to go. I always get up to go. It’s time to go. Well, it’s always time to go. Go where? He’s an old man in a white straw cowboy hat and ratty tweed coat. In his right hand, a thick walking stick carried like a parade baton. His spotted jowls sag. Mouth hanging open. Emphysema? He doesn’t appear to see very well. He moves as if he were pushing against a strong north wind, pushing against a thousand years. And, to top it off, he’s walking away, leading an army of nobody, a parade of silence. He’s making his exit, stage right, up an otherwise empty White Street, west, towards the setting sun. ::Do you know who that is, Mr. Satai?:: I stare at the surveillance photo the agent has slid on the table between us. ::No:: ::You’re absolutely certain you’ve never seen this man before?:: ::I’m positive. Who is he?:: The agent frowns. ::That’s the hero of our story, Mr. Satai. What do you think of that?:: ::I think we’re in a lot of trouble.:: ::Is that supposed to be funny, Mr. Satai?:: ::I don’t know. Is it?::
…..and the fog rolls in, blanketing the great metropolis, dissolving the walls of the prisons and madhouses, all borders erased, allowing dreams to escape in the multiform of monsters. It’s all been planned, you see, up to a point. And then things just kind of happen all by themselves: pornocalypse. You can sense it in the air: the storm a-building. YOU’VE BEEN LIED TO. There is a God. He knows you. He loves you. He has a plan. –the sign on the Times Square Church overlooking the blind masses on Broadway. This is part of His plan? This is a “plan?”
::Hoist’er up boys:: the foreman says, and two thickset guys in blue hard hats and ConEd gear yank the body off its feet. Slender hands claw at the hairy rope around his neck and slippered feet start pedaling. ::Har har har:: the foreman laughs, re-lighting a cigar stub. His crew heave-ho. The slim body shakes all over. At the crotch, the pink leopard-print leotard is bloodied, torn, exposing a blob of half-tumescent flesh. There aren’t many women left in this sector. You have to make due. Are those sequins dusting the high cheekbones like glittering freckles? Oh my! ((Later, when the corpse is abandoned, the pigeons will swarm beneath to peck at the blinking glitter scattered among the spilled semen thinking they are crumbs of magical bread, ie. manna from Heaven.))
You see, they say there is a prophet roaming these streets, huddled under stinking blankets, living in doorways, disguised in filth, hunted by no one, but, nonetheless, in danger of casual assassination ((aren’t we all?)), but don’t believe it. He’s out there, dressed in old newspapers, eating out of trash cans, collecting recyclables, but we don’t buy it. He’s seen visions, celestial architectures, he’s heard voices, read testaments in the sky, he’s journeyed across the long dark night of the soul, back and forth, several times, and he’s got a message he’s muttering into his unkempt and food-stained beard…that’s what they say, but trust us, if it were true, you wouldn’t want to hear it. That door over there, you know, whatever happens, whatever you do, don’t open it. Promise?
Despair is a spotted, long-limbed suicide in action, it’s suicide by the half-second, the slaughter of moments. Despair is a leaping on the neck of life and sucking it until its knees buckle. Despair is a wild predator with no natural prey. I hate too much to kill myself. I hate you, all of you, life itself. I hate like a nuclear holocaust. If I kill myself…indeed, what is the point? If I kill myself, I give you hope. I consider despair a predatory super-virus, as well as a spotted, long-limbed suicide in action, a leaping on the neck, and all the rest.
Despair will be the last virus, the one disease we cannot cure. We will have to live with it, for it, by it. We will have to merge one with it, seek our joy in it, our reason to be. What doesn’t kill me I become. Surely I mentioned: there is no cure. It is the cure itself. There is no self-destruct mechanism in pure despair. As long as there is fuel, there is the fire. As long as there is life, there is my despair. As long as I have a breath, I’ll curse you, poison you, try to murder you. Pure despair wants to survive at all costs: it wants to survive to eat up every hope, every smile, every ideal, every everything. How can I kill you, if I’m dead? Surely I mentioned it? I hate you. You find me: asphyxiated, poisoned, car-crashed, shot through the upper palate. Immediately, you use my death as propaganda. You reinterpret my act of terror. You turn it into cowardice. Into weakness. Into despair. He was sad, disappointed, insane. He couldn’t cope, couldn’t love, couldn’t find happiness. Life controls all the media, the capital, the sex, the women, the prizes, the fame…it pays off all the novelists, screenwriters, philosophers, poets, and artists. This is war. War of all against all.
Suicide is written into the rules of conventional warfare, but despair is the recurring malignancy of terrorism. One bad cell will do you in. I’ll move in stealth. I’ll refuse to act with honor, courage, or principles. I’ll refuse to die until I’m slaughtered by the forces of good, of God. I’ll refuse defeat because I have no objectives. I am the ultimate enemy: there is nothing I can consider victory. I am in the horror movie of life simply this: MONSTER.
Monstrosity=what is uncontainable, inassimilable, incoherent, indestructible. Suicide is part of the social contract, a special circumstance, let’s call it clause 1313, paragraph 13X. Suicide is an “honorable” discharge, with a wink and a sigh, it’s formal surrender on the aircraft carrier, it’s going to the place of execution with a quiet dignity, even in the worst of circumstances. I’ll live as long as possible, spitting, biting, kicking…a pure torrent of virulent nonsense pouring from the hole in the center of my face, eyes cold as buttons in a wintry twilight and when I die it will be because you had to murder me. Suicide is a failure to despair: suicide is a failure to hate enough.
Only when I can concentrate my hate into an area so microcosmically insignificant it is beyond measurement will the resultant repellent force rebound outward in a blast whose shock waves cause eternal disruptive waves throughout the macrocosmos all the way to its never-endingness like a slap on black jelly, a blast whose epicenter will leave a cold crater, an enigmatic absence, the size of the earth in all that space (a black hole?) what we would otherwise mark with the cenotaph: I…only then would I consider self-destruction. And not even then—even then suicide would be a failure, a mercy killing, another way to survive.
Do you understand? Despair is an unsatisfiable sadism, a torture machine on the roll, a concentration camp, a weapon of war with no objective but more war, a prolongation of hostilities in perpetuity, an absolute wasteland maker. Despair is delicious. It’s neither a meal nor a snack. It’s an appetite with no food to satisfy it. “The flat-lined zombie body, disengaged from all intentional vitality, supports a protracted despair no less immaculate than an ECG whine” –Vauung
Look into my eyes: nothing. I shuffle forward in a pantomime of walking. I am a disguise-person. I am zombie. I eat everything: people, buildings, stars, trees. I am a maggot, a cancer, a plague from Saturn. I consume but I produce nothing, not even a fertilizing shit, only an unfertilizing toxic shit, an alien shit. There is nothing growing in my wake. There is no stopping me. The bullets hit me like passersby going in the opposite direction on Madison Avenue. Even my hand, dismembered, will continue to blindly crawl. I am focused, monomaniacally, on the vanishing point. What you see reflected in my eyes, literally, is that distant no-place, that nothing I can never reach, that nothing that is here, inside me, wherever I am. “The more you think about the exact same thing the more the meaning goes away and the emptier and better you feel.” –Andy Warhol
I sit on the sidewalk with a girl’s head in my hands like a bloody coconut and I’m staring towards the barren planes of nothing even in the middle of Metropolis. Zombie doesn’t commit suicide. Zombie is already dead. Zombie is walking nothing. I am not a human being: I am a cold grey slush carried in a bone urn propelled by an unthinking urge to nothing. Is it accurate to call despair sentience? Despair is unthinking, prior to thinking, after-thinking. Despair is zombie-nonspeak. Despair makes no kind of sense, its no-sense, it’s nonsense.
I eat a girl and I’m not satisfied. I eat a policeman, same thing. A soccer team, no difference. I eat everyone on the African subcontinent, it’s as if I hadn’t eaten a thing. My belly’s empty. I’m still hungry, dammit. I despair. I can never be satiated. I cannot die. I cannot formulate what would satisfy me because nothing can!
Where is the Zombie Queen—is she the one I’m looking for? Am I looking for the zombie-fuck, the spewing of eternal corruptions, the ripening of my own corpse into virulent incoherence like the climax of a billion symphonies played backward that renders all listeners deaf? And blind? Am I looking not only to die but to keep on dying? I don’t commit suicide because death is not enough. It’s not only that I have no hope. I have no choice. I despair. I am, therefore I despair. I despair like other men love. If I want to exist, I despair. I despair with my teeth bared. I despair with a hard-on. I despair like the foreplay of an orgasm that never comes! “A call that must be without expectation, without any possibility of relief or fulfillment, and also which arises spontaneously, unchosen and inevitable at a threshold of absolute, indefinitely prolonged abandonment. –Vauung
Where hatred meets despair is at zombie. Where zombie is there you’ll find an intersection with two blank signs: you are standing on the corner of nowhere and noplace. In three seconds you will be nothing but a ragged red ribcage and a blood-slicked femur. Are you not zombie, too? Despair is the dead-end intersection where zombie waits. Zombie is an eating machine: a rage without purpose. A bitter wind. Are you not zombie, too?
Zombie is a mastication process: ultimate violence without reflection. It’s an anti-strategy for dissolving everything into chaos. I am multiplying unnaturally. To kill me now, you’d need a flamethrower. There are too many of me! I am an assemblage of dead parts. Of all the dead and the dead to come. Are you not zombie, too? My despair is uncontrollable, like an infectious fog, it spreads over the verdant landscape. My breath is rotten. I am a machine for producing this fog, my jism carries it, the saliva in my rabid bite spreads it. But what animates me? Rage. Hatred. My offspring is misery.
Are you not zombie, too?
Suicide is a hopeful prophylactic, an attempt to end this misery, to abort the suffering. Suicide is an expression of hope, that I will find relief, that the world can end, that despair can, at last, be snuffed out. Rest in peace. I deliberately practice unsafe sex: I ooze. Despair is a desire that oozes. Look at my clumsy movements, my goose-step, my salute: racism, militarism, capitalism, imperialism, communism, modernism, fanaticism, any-ism that represents the worst possible choice, the “clumsiest” option, that represents the maximum incoherence, that promotes total breakdown, optimum horror, that works as a solvent to melt everything down to dumb inert lump—these are all my anti-strategies, my preferred choices.
Zombie is dumb: it is an incoherent crawling goop. Is it dumb to hate—then that’s what I do. Is it ineffectual to rage and rape? No doubt. Watch me. I rage and rape unthinkingly like a machine. I don’t, strictly speaking, “choose” so much as tend, choice is an illusion, I tend toward the most violent, the most obscene, the most stupid. I have a natural affinity for the rank and rotten . Decomposition is easy, it’s a seduction. I have a natural affinity for a slide into decay. The world is my body is dead is the world that I’d kill. I’m super-superimposed: I’m both zombie and land of the living dead. Open me up: see the dead city, the necropolis of slime. Are you not zombie, too? My rictus grin.