IMAGINATION IS ETERNITY
I have presented many of Thomas Sarebbononnato’s opinions through several blogs, the posts posted, the pages published in the Pages sections I maintain as one or another review I edit, have edited . . . there will be new ones that I will also edit, maintain, run . . . as I have those I have referred to obliquely herein for how many years now? I am not genuinely asking because I do have a good idea for how long, and I could easily check . . . the first review.blog.webzine being nearly a dozen years old; the others are at lest several or more years old, nearer a decade than to five or three . . . what then must I say about what gets published herein . . . all the world is a thing made, one or another and another and another kind of fiction, yes, essays, short stories, short-short pieces in prose, maybe what we used to call vignettes, this something other than flash fiction, what means prose poem, how they, these latter two mentioned here come together, collide, converge, merge, run parallel, have features now the same, sometimes coming across identically . . . I, myself, have written a lot of poetry, thus the form, prose poem, has been endeavored . . . lyric poetry being a bit monologic . . . I have also written monologues, dialogues, short plays for off-off Broadway theater . . . what then does this have to say about theater . . . there are these things we used to call closet dramas . . . is that really a can of worms? I am not going to get into how much Ioved Beckett and Ionesco when I was in my twenties, or how long ago that is, was, will have been in some future time I can conceive of coming to pass . . .
Narrative, expository, dialogic, dialectic . . . I have written tons of fictional essays, polemical fiction, fictional diatribes, tirades in the guise of fiction, who I am, exposing myself in what I write? I am not really asking.
Everything written herein, therein, wherever it has been posted, uploaded, published, under whatever guise, has always been one or another persona piece, myself always being more intelligent than any voice voicing itself in whatever context it finds itself voiced. I am God to everything that happens on the page . . . but what would it mean for creation if the mind of God had an unconscious, if there were an Ego, Super-Ego and Id for God?
When I say as I have said in FICTION ONE, The Life and Opinions of Thomas Sarebbononnato . . . I mean it, but I also have set up a context within which Thomas publishes fiction . . . all the prose pieces are just that, prose, whether that be prose fiction or prose non-fiction from Thomas’s place, prose fiction or non-fiction then being either narrative, expository, lyric, dramatic, that is, dialogic . . . how then do I examine herein Thomas’s dialectic interludes, conveyances, excursions . . . what then am I saying and what then must I say about how anything gets said . . . to say or not to say about this Dialectic of Selfhood, if I may borrow from Professor Ridder on Montaigne, a good example for what happens for Thomas . . . how Thomas uses the essay as a form to convey his opinions, ideas . . . and I am pointing to the literary essay as put forward by Montaigne, yet, something of the philosophical vignette, as I like to call what Pascal was doing in his Thoughts, Les Pensees. Yet,let me say it again, Thomas also uses the essay in its fictional and non-fictional varieties.
Following the pen is what Thomas does. I am merely an editor of his work. I will leave all generic wrangling to you, my fellow readers, thus my fellow hypocrites . . . yes, of course, there are many things that are simply a matter of course . . . no? But do not imagine that there are not people who think as such, and also do not imagine that if there were people who thought as such that it would not run parallel or meet point for point in another paradigm, what too many others––perhaps more than anyone would care to number––would think likewise except onto you, onto another, onto any other of any other group, demographic, ethnic, religious––they are virtually all the same to any normal person, but could be made to maintain difference in any bureaucracy . . ..
WHAT THEN MUST I DO?
What is, is; what has been, has been; what will be, will be. He goes on to say, as he has said before, some of the things he has thought, re-thought, imagined enough times to seem as if he was seizing the evidence of his eyes, which another might question, what you see, what you imagine you have seen, what you think you are seeing, how much less of certainty some persons want you to believe what you think rests on, except, of course, what they think, what they imagine––I have not met one person here in this City of New York, from anywhere in the world, that is not consumed by one ro another kind of prejudice too much akin to himself, to his family, to his upbringing, to his ethnicity, his religious background, his over politicization at the hands of one or another dogmatic, demagogue, polemicist, criminally narrow minded . . . I cannot tell you how many really dumb remarks have passed my way about Catholic Theology from Protestant White People, Protestant Black People, Jewish People, particularly American Ashkenazi of the reformed bent, almost invariably neo-liberal, perhaps another closet conservative––yes, how many dumb, narrow minded remarks even from Muslims when all of the above persons think they have a bone to pick, or a point to make, as if they have actually studied their own theology enough, but never mind this, they just say so many inordinately dumb things about Catholics and Catholicism as if they have a right to being so ignorant, so bigoted, as if what they are saying is some kind of revealed truth that they have an obligation to tell me, maybe even harangue me mildly for, about, on . . . but Dear White Protestant People, Dear Black Protestant People, Dear American Ashkenazim, Dear Muslim People . . . stop trying to drag this Catholic into your Zealous rivers . . . leave me the fuck alone . . . :
“What bothers me most about most Muslims,” he said, “I imagine,” he added, “is that it seems that far too many of them are where we were a thousand years ago,” he said, “and that’s not hyperbole; but it most likely is when others offer their rebuttals or outrage––the rebuttals will likely be intelligent; the outrage will usually come from educated persons who are not as educated as they think, nowhere as literate as they might imagine if they ever know what literacy was. “Yes, at best, I imagine that they are somewhere where we were five hundred years ago, or where we were sometime in the 17th century––somewhere a progressive might have been then, at least in my more bigoted reflexes—but then I have to think about this and I can’t imagine most Muslims are anywhere as progressive as our 17th century predecessors were––and then I know that there are many who are what they are more greatly than anyone anywhere else could imagine, better––much better, more progressive?
“And somewhere in the pit of my gut, somewhere around the labyrinth of my bowels, I cannot help but look at the horribly infantilized women in my neighborhood and conclude anything other than Islam––why Islam? They are from mountain villages in Pakistan, right? Maybe from the cities. There are impossibly dumb and narrow-minded ignorant bigots here in New York, born and raised in the city.
“Submission in a way no other religion requires submission, endemically misogynist . . . and it hearkens back to my Roman forefathers who were committed in a matter/anti-matter struggle with Semitic civilizations . . . ; but then, my head sometimes tells me other things, what I think and say and maybe believe with reason and rationality—I should say Reason, with a capital ‘R,’ but we in America are so in love with, obsessed by, taken with our guiding epistemology: doubt, doubt and more doubt—no matter how medieval I find Islam today remaining—and it is medievalism in face of what we understand to be progressive (if possible) liberal democracy—what was I saying, where was I going with this? I cannot imagine Muslims, all one billion of them, make up a monolith like Black Activists in America today want to make out of Whiteness in America and Whiteness universally in the world; but contemporary stereotypes, bigotries and narrow-mindedness and simplistic responses about Islam mirror or touch point for point virtually everything said today on our contemporaneity about Whiteness, as if all caucasian people are identical and part of a great monolith, and if they are not part of the hegemony, then they are guilt by association,ironicslly asa association only put on all the disparate ethnicities and racial groups that Black People today are calling White and that the media and the Academy defers to out of fear of raising ire, or just plain Protestant White and American-Reformed-Ashkenaziim cowardice . . . but I could have told you that that was coming . . .
“I heard a guy in a bar say that if Allah were God, then he was an atheist . . . and so is the current situation between Muslim and the West; is Yaweh, God the Father? Not in my understanding. Anyone who sees the same representation of God in the Jewish, the Christian or Muslims texts is mistaken or stupid.
“I cannot imagine what it must be like to live in Saudi Arabia or Iran, but as far as I think, so long as the mass of Muslims do not condemn, do not seem outraged by, terrorism against the west; so long as Pakistani parents teach their children that it okay to call women sluts and whores for how they dress in the west here in Brooklyn not in accordance with fucked up Sharia Law; so long as most Muslims do not condemn the actions of their Omars—and if they did, would we not hear more of it, see more of it? So long as the mass of Muslims I imagine are here to make money they could not back home and not for freedom; so long as most average every day working living Muslims would prefer or do prefer Sharia Law to the Constitution.
“So long as Muslims get militant in their neighborhoods against Americans they do not agree with because Americans do not follow Sharia; so long as this is what is, we have a serious conflict in civilization, a serious conflict in metaphysics, a serious conflict that amounts to matter/anti-matter. Do not think that most Muslims did not say “Good” after Omar shot up the gay club; and do not imagine that suicidal Jihad does not equate in the minds of the perpetrators with martyrdom, which always cleanses the sinner of his sins . . . do not imagine that Omar did not imagine he would be cleansed of his sins by doing what he did, or that the nut in Nice did not imagine the same thing. It is more likely that some fanatic who has not lived as a devout Muslim will perpetrate something heinous in order to meet with his own logic of martyrdom than an actual rationally practicing Muslim will. What am I saying? What have I said? What will I say again, say in the future, maybe not again?”
He says what he says in earnest. He asks what he asks in earnest. He believes what he believes about a clash in civilization being a clash in metaphysics, thus being a metaphysical matter/anti-matter annihilation. This he is able to imagine and articulate. This he disseminates through his blog.
What then is it that you imagine I must do, must say? Please give me a clue as to what it is you are convinced I should say. I do suggest you re-read it, carefully, more so than the initial superficial skimming allowed. All good reading is re-reading, I used to tell my freshman composition classes.