Reading The Blue Clerk, 118

“Verso 32.1”

We keep returning to the problem of genius, and what we are told to overlook. The abusive genius. The slave-owning genius. The ethnocidal genius. The ecocidal genius.

Genius is not a word we use to think of kindness and care. And, yes, many people expand our imaginations and possibilities with their genius, making freedom thinkable, making freedom palpable.

How this genius rubs against that genius. (A friend discards words. I am not brave enough to.)

I cannot get past this. I am a barbarian.

The seduction is a lie. If you master—master? what a strange term—this and that and that and this then you will have transcended the interdiction your being incarnates. Yet, having traced the philosophy and history of your impossibility, what is there to claim beyond your negation?

(Do I repeat myself? Let me do so.)

People say that is the way it was. Yes, that is exactly the way it was.

And if you could imagine beyond the impossibility you cannot incarnate, to imagine alongside other impossibilities that must be called quotidian miracles—to have survived, to have survived and made living, to have survived and loved, to have survived, and more than survived, to have survived and made beauty.

Yes. That is the way it was. And also, the way it was.

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