22 December 2011

t&u& lash your nipples to a post history is gorgeous

Jared Schickling's most recent book, t&u& lash your nipples to a post history is gorgeous (Blazevox 2011), opens with an epigraph from Jacques Derrida's essay "Différance," which states: "and whoever believes that one tracks down some thing? one tracks down tracks." To this extent, Schickling's collection does not track down language, poetry, sound, or emotion, but the tracks of tracks in the form of language. Take, for example, the following excerpt from the 0pening poem "Epiphytic":


sleeping, change plstc



panic re

store nothing


gone, morning

mourning for


If one definition of a track is "evidence, as a mark or series of marks, that something has passed," then the tracks of language in these poems indicate that language, perhaps as a system of signification, has passed through these fragments and moved on. Or, perhaps, language systems in these poems have passed in that they have died. What remains in t&u& are, literally, the remains of language.

Another aspect of Schickling's collection that call attention to itself is the use of diagrammatic figures. Below is an excerpt from the poem "The":

In many ways, we can read these moments as post-signifying. As Deleuze and Guatarri wrote in A Thousand Plateaus, post-signification and the diagrammatic are intimately entwined, wherein the diagrammatic are "transformations that blow apart semiotic systems or regimes of signs on the plane of consistency of positive absolute deterritorialization" (136). This, again, speaks to the tracks or tracks mention earlier: we are not seeking a way to discover a signing system through tracks or diagrams, but merely to find and immerse ourselves within these tracks and diagrams: a wholly different manner in which to conceive of words and language.

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