THE NEW SOCIETY

frankly
our meeting
was horrendous

could you ....?
well, I ask you
truly

could you ....?
crossing your heart
and hoping to live

could you ....?
ask Reuters to attend
and tell the world

- Hey! listen everybody
this is the new society

this is the beginning
of the new anarchy

this is the carrying forward
of the unknowing
into the wider world

and yet it is so
since we make it so ....

what is happening
between us
is primarily
what is happening

the explicit content
well, that is
maybe something else

but also happening ....

I have to remind you
of the monkey business:

I see
4 men
(well, I am told
another time it was 3 women
- but there you go:
we need not get entangled
in the gender-business)

3 of the men
gradually shifting
to the North

echoing each other's attitudes
the crossed arm
the folded leg
competing for the agenda
talking the most

I see
the Son of Heaven sitting
where the sun shines on his face

I see
the women
facing inwards from the South

and some people
who love children (the most ostentatiously)
all in a line
cross-legged on the floor ....

in the morning
I made a move myself
(but I knew I was making it)

I hear a man:
this meeting
chooses to discuss
the men's agenda

and I think
aha
when he is alpha
him and him will kill him

him and him
will be wounded in the fight

and him
the least obtrusive
shall inherit the earth
(as Lao Tzu inherits now
the Middle Kingdom) ....

happily, however
I had forgotten
we are human

later
I watch
the walking-away:

the archaic human
when the monkey-business starts
just walks away

you this way
me that way
and so, an end

in the forest margins
where sun and shade are mingled
there is food and space

if we start in Eritrea
and I walk away
each year one mile
across the beach

fishing among the waves
hunting among the hills
gathering among the trees

(a mile is enough
to take me out of earshot)

a mere 10 000 years
will find me in Australia ....

so since the human solution
to the monkey-business
is a walking-away

alas, for farms
for lands and property
for crops that need defended
for slaves and soldiers
hungry and poor, unable to rejoice ....

I was so happy to see
in our last hours

the women walking away along the sand
walking without walking

to hear your thoughtful voices
recreating
the circle round the fire
where all might speak ....

so can we now
send for Reuters?
do we now have
political Coca-Cola?

alas, no:

our fire became a fire
where each might speak

but where
where oh where
is the fire without a fire

where I
might fail to speak?

where I
could struggle safely in confusion?
in the painful inarticulate?
in the prescient moment?

where you
will help me honour
in the honouring

the space for which we are here ....?
the space from which I might say ....?

of that which forms freshly green
and calls for help to say it ....?

of that which (therefore)
has never yet been said
in the whole history of the world ....?

ok
now you can send
for Reuters

26th May 2000

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