A translation of Baudelaire’s Au Lecteur

An unorthodox translation by Lake.

You sods, errors, pissers, and lesions

Occupy our souls and travel through our corpses.

As our ailment are to our amiable re-death,

the cum of menders nourishes their vermin.

Our peach’s son, the fetus, we repent as son of leeches;

We in our phases pay grass-cement for our view

And we rend the gayness along the roads to barbarism.

Credit for a devil’s raining lavatories are our torches,

On the oilier of the evils that are sat upon by Three-reigns

Who barks longingly at our spirit’s enchantment

And the rich metal of our own violence

Is all vaporised by that savage chimney

It’s the devil who taints the girls among our remains;

Axes, objects repugnant to our troves of bees,

Chuck days against our infernal descendants passed,

Without horror, but traversing the tame beast they pounded

From our cervical malignancy comes millions helmeted,

Grilling chants and repostes on people as demons

And great in our respirations, death in our apples

Sickly engrossed, cum on flowers, with sordid plaints.

Such is the way – poison, poignant and burning –

Our own parts in cores bred by their pleasing designs

The cadaver banal before our pitious destinies

This is our love, for hell!-No ashes hardening.

Mighty perms like charcoal, like panthers’ lice

They, singe less scorpions, less vultures, less serpents,

The monsters galloping, sands hurled groaning in rampage

In the menagerie infamous for our vices.

This one is much laid, much menacing, much unworldly.

Quick are his fascistic and great gestures near great cries.

He, ferocious, voluntarily deals the earth’s debris

Towards a baleful and avaricious world

It’s ennui! The oil charging the rain’s involutions.

It raves of echoed feuds that fume for their hooker.

You who know, lecture the monster’s delicacy.

Hyopocrite lecher in my likeness, you are my friend!

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A Rosicrucian Political Cartoon

Abstractio Game 4.jpg

“The Situation Today”

By PP, L, SH, JA

A game taught to us by our surrealist comrade David Nadeau of Quebec

Wherein a drawing is collectively made using predetermined piles of abstract words provided by each player and randomly selected in turn, in this case the words:

Identity

Pacified Soul Reaper

Eloquence

Balance

Eruption

Globalization

After which the result was deemed to be an esoteric political cartoon of the  fellowship of the rosy cross.

July 4th, 2019.

P.S. We welcome any interpretations of this cartoon, its relationship to the world today etc. in the comments section.

At the Metal Creamery

unnamed

A little girl exclaims, “nothing creamier than metal”, and you know with steely certainty she is right.

At the metal creamery, the befreckled boy behind the counter dollops more palladium on your cone. The girl pulls taffy manganese and twines it into a sloppy cat’s cradle while jealously eyeing the aurum caramel being ribboned on your order.

“Caramelized in the hinterlands, from cows fed a traditional diet of strontium-90” croons Freckles right before he extravagantly and practicedly sweeps his hands across the counter: “tantalum licorice bits, and mango cobalt, untampered hafnium (organic of course!), pudgy, polonium-milk balls and arsenic lased with risperidone are all hot this month”. The girl shrieks and adds “GERMANY”, before her mother corrects her with “zested germanium sorbet fluffed with argon”. Bemused, the mother looks at you directly before continuing “we brought my mum here for her 77th birthday and they both couldn’t get enough of it… especially those flavored mercury petals” and then sighs a little. You chuckle and say, “I always get the same thing!” before asking for a tungsten-stick on the side and “more rhenium please”. The little girl perks up again, and her mother whispers to her “the rhenium is just flavorless garnish”.

You hear the fwoosh! of a magnesium torch come from the kitchen, right before an elaborate confection is wheeled out. The chief baker tisks carefully as she circles her opus. A purest-platinum, ice-cream cake with blinding, lit-magnesium muslin creeping like vines over it. Sleepy iris flowers shaped from an alloy of caesium and chalk droop from the top tier. Inside each flower, a living violet exhales a glittering, osmium pollen that lingers in the air. Asbestos mottling for contrast of course, and a gelled uranium daiquiri en-wombed (but still visible) at the cake’s centre; pulsing with a subtle, foetal Cherenkov radiation. The whole thing sits on a red and satiny, iron pedestal. The baker dips a single finger into the iron and frowns, “whisked to perfection…,” right before drawing herself up to her full height and proudly asking “would you like to try?” The mother holds her squirming daughter back while staring dumbfounded at the cake. You barely work-up the presence of mind to nod.

The clerk scurries into the back and returns with plates and a knife. The baker deftly cuts a piece and presents it to you with a curious look in her eye. You take a bite, and as you chew, you feel it lubriciously peel away the first layer of your mouth’s inner skin. The sudden gush of blood on your tongue pairs perfectly with the delicate flavors. And the effortless lancing of your cheeks by the irises adds a new dimension. The baker studies you and then permits herself a small understanding smile, “copper and salt, as flavors, are best when only implied.” Your eyes close to fully savor the experience as DNA damage spritzes its tiny citrus sparks through your body.

The metal creamery has done it again!

  • Sa’ad Hassan
germanium1

Report from the Jolly Mortuary

The group has been in a fruitful period of “exile” since our favourite spot was closed for repairs earlier this year. Since then we have taken advantage of our rootlessness and have found ourselves in a slew of unfamiliar places, including an underpass, a junk store, a sex shop, and a flooded beach. And on May 17, it was suggested that we meet in the winter garden of the Royal Ottawa Hospital, our local mental health institution. Here we knew through experience and friendships that we would find, despite the disciplinary clinical oversight, and in addition to some interesting artistic creations on display including a few known collaborators,  an atmosphere and community of people far more sympathetic to our games and discussions than is typically met with in public cultural spaces.

In this location we (JA, L, PP, SH) explored a few ideas, starting with a folding game of drawing banal objects. The idea was to invoke a Duchampian irrational enlargement or alienation of everyday objects, the kind of ordinary household things Breton suggested might even on occasion have more poetic power than explicitly contrived surrealist objects. We then took turns with elaboration via captioning them with extravagant titles, hiding the original object, redrawing based on the last visible play and so on. The goal was to create a tapestry of analogical surprises from mundane reality.

Jolly mortuary b&w

Following this we wrote surrealist letters and replies to each other with much black humor and passion. Here is a sample chain that we found especially funny:

Dear Mongoose,

Your insipid storytelling is no longer welcome in our town. I suggest you take your spider-wife & leave before your children are encapsulated in preservative ooze.

Yours in caution,

-Obsolescence MacDonald

*

After doing this grosse abnormal letter I’ll ingest a bucket of flies and spit them at your feet then my plan of becoming a venus fly-trap will be at hand!!!

*

Dear madame,

I think that I am in love. Poetry of the grotesque is the most true to the human spirit, and I am inspired by your words to quilt in your honour. Mark my words, your puppy will have a new bed by this Victoria Day.

*

Dearly beloved,

I know love and all its late orchestral movements. Its requiem. I bought the puppy you speak of and he died to “God Save the Queen”. His tombstone erect as Eros, the epitaph mercurial as semen.

We then played a game of “interrupted speech”, derived from a game described in La civilization surréaliste, where players write automatic texts while another periodically interrupts with a word that must be incorporated by all the players.

Finally a discussion about dreams and quantum physics which (naturally) led to an inquiry by L on the perfect orgy:

L chose a heaping puppy-pile of effeminate ladyboys. When asked how many of himself L the narcissist would consider sufficient for an orgy, infinite was preferable but three would be a minimum. Would they be exact copies? Perhaps not but they would not aim for visual variations and would enjoy wearing the exact same costumes. It occurred later that Gemini season was almost upon us.

SH described a single ideal boy, eyes like spaghetti, a nose like a beehive all percolated, dispensing sugary earl-grey tea which SH laps up periodically, and this figure multiplies itself like a centaur, except instead of a horsebottom it’s more boy,  chained in ever longer repetitions, until the sufficient number is reached for an orgy.

JA chose a highly charged erotic ceremonial mass decoration of a 800 xmas trees with analogical objects until one hits a tantric orgasm. The goal is to extend eroticism beyond the stereotyped parts of the body, beyond the body itself, or rather an extension of the body into poetic objects which can transmit poetic bursts of resonance (psychically) back to the participants. With years of preparation there is no reason this couldn’t be achieved with humanity’s current capabilities.

PP chose a visitation in a cell from an unspecified number of invisible succubuses. Light, and the warmth of five hands on his chest. But also an overdrive of sexuality that prolongs the experience beyond ejaculation and ends with pain.

Looking at these games retroactively we might even interpret them as ridiculous attempts at reconciling ourselves with our homeless state: the idealization of homely nostalgic objects, the bureaucratic correspondence of reality cluttering up the work of those seeking a new path in the rootless world, the interruption of chance events in even the most internal monologizing—a core characteristic of the exile state—and finally the dream of excess and gorging in the future orgy as a revolt against enclosure of actions and feelings.

SH brought up the concept of a terrarium which we then filled with odd objects—thimbles, silhouettes of friends, mollusks, eels. This resonated eerily with the “open glass” architecture of the garden, which definitely felt like a kind of aquarium for the mad. We also looked at the art on display of the patients, including some striking mytho-Egyptological work by Oziput, and some amazing, actually “poetic materialist” photographs interpreting tree parts by the appropriately named Sylvana Beaulieu—including a shot of what looks like a seahorse emerging from a tree stump, and a wizard found in a knot of wood.* So the aqua-terrarium fills itself up.

* It wasn’t easy to get a good picture of these images in the display case and we’re not sure how best to contact the photographer to ask permission, so we’ll refrain from posting them for now…

A Study in Classroom Violence

School has taught me well. Thanks to my teachers, I now know how to think.

How much nicer would being locked up in the peace, quiet, and safety of solitary confinement be than remaining stuck in this hellish classroom? I’m not a psychopath, unfortunately, so killing my fellow students would cost me significant remorse to get there.

The incessant noise bothers me in ways I’m not allowed to be bothered. The resonance of all the individual voices harmonizes into whispers buzzing in my head. I can barely make out what the crowd of my thoughts are saying, but a word or phrase here or there tells me I’m having trouble controlling how upset I’ve become. A little bit of heat, I can tolerate, but the games, insinuations, gossip, and plain old insults are like being submerged in filthy oil set to boil. I want to turn them off like a room full of TVs all set to commercials.

None of them deserve to die, but if a bully were gotten rid of, my remorse would be much less. Many would benefit after the initial shock. The question is whether the expected relief of being locked away and sparing the bully’s lifetime of victims would offset the trouble of having to kill someone and endure a trial. It’s a simple equation.

A courtroom seems like all the hatefulness of school distilled to its bitterest essence of boredom, forced seriousness, inscrutable rules, and jumbled evidence and opinions presented slowly enough to obscure the bigger picture. Also, it would traumatize the entire school for there to be a murder, which would be harder to live with than the loss of a bully or two. I’d be pretty upset if someone murdered someone on me.

Then again, isn’t there already a culture of fearfulness? Aren’t we already being punished into our futures as if it were normal and expected that we be miserable, and blamed for our lack of resilience in becoming depressed, and anxious? Of course we’d be violent to each other. It’s the only expression of contempt against our daily abuse we can get away with. Whether our lives feel safe or livable has never mattered compared to preparing us to waste them working jobs made for us to despise. Must I really take responsibility for terrorizing my school when there’s an army of civil servants decidedly ignoring how people like me feel?

Of course, I don’t have the means to kill anyone. I’m too weak. The part where I fight back is where the cornered mouse bites the cat. Even if I had it all planned out, I’d freeze at the decisive moment, cry, and get pounded to the ground like a thawing slab of meat. Maybe someone will kill me, instead.

There’s always suicide. Cost-benefit analysis consistently demonstrates that suicide is the optimal solution, as the expected misery of living my life is quite a bit worse than enduring a self-inflicted injury capable of ending it. Delusional what-if scenarios don’t enter into it. The cheapening of my life is a matter of economic exchange. My life won’t be worth anything until someone gives me something to live for.

-Crown of Blonde Hair

Amorous Report from the Floodzone

We who love love, always flood floods. On May 2nd 2019 the Ottawa river peaked in a flood that beat records set in the last major flood in the spring of 2017. Accordingly, SH, PP, JA and L of the Ottawa surrealist group assembled at the flooded zone on Britannia beach and continued our tradition of flood investigations (see here for some intimations of what was discovered in 2017). Wandering the waterline, we dreamed collectively at the strange formations and detritus we found at our feet.

group portrait with flood and glove
group portrait with hung glove and flood

Highlights of the excursion included:
  • The detection of a flood astronomy—the reversion of ground to sky and the flooded concordances with well known stars and constellations (sagitarius, cancer, gemini, the dog star…)
  • Flood erotica—an orgy of sandbags, condoms, heaps of ooze, the live copulation of a pair of gulls
  • The methodological nivellation of different species of golems; the creation of slime and shrubs and gulls, as low level homunculi; that white sandbags might be brought to life as gulls
  • The discovery of the grey lantern and indications of a visit from the Hermit card, Arcanum 9
  • A visitation from a pink shark, heretofore unseen in the Ottawa river
  • A puzzling witch trial for heretical trees indicated by heaps of wood for a burning at the stake
  • Paranoiac driftwood, including a burnt foot, a Lovecraftian entity, an eagle, and a few formless masses of exquisite beauty
We then assembled in the lobby of the not-entirely-flooded Kolbus Community Centre to write an impromptu collective poem on our subjective experiences of the flood phenomena. Here is an extract:

Each ripple constricts and squeezes out a duck. Brambleberg and soggy bones, and the whole scene a whisper that says the reflection is all wrong.

As the grey lantern cast its rays of anti-light it rained and melted the eyeless golems of the cloud homunculus.

Call me Ishmael, afloat on a melted jellyfish, I sing of snows sent to Grecian graves that never see a seagull’s handwriting.

I lost the way to the footbridge of shadow.

My own cause is swept up in lightning’s gloss river.

A goose demon howls for myopia’s end.

The more detailed insights and data, along with a lot of unpublished interpretations from the 2017 flood, may one day be assembled, analyzed and made available in a future issue of /kaɪˈmɪərə/.

group portrait - orgy of sandbags.JPG
group portrait with orgy of sandbag golems