Ali Znaidi

Five Cyberpoems

Typing Something Luminous

Between light and darkness
a door of fathomless possibilities opens onto the ether.

Between light and darkness
a cosmos of limitations is exploded,
while limitless aspirations are being downloaded.

Between darkness and light
the butterflies’ wings are (still) static.
No movements;
only my errant fingers wandering in the keyboard’s  wilderness
trying to type something luminous in the dark.

Digital Dilemmas

I am Googleable.
I am Twitterable.
But why am I still unFacebookable?

I am Twitterable.
I am Facebookable.
But why am I still unGoogleable?

I am Facebookable.
I am Googleable.
But why am I still unTwitterable?

I am real. So why have I to be virtual?
I am virtual. So why have I to be real?

Am I online or off-line?
Am infected or protected?

Am a human being or a machine?

—The only thing
I am certain about is that at the end
we are (all) blog posts
and our ultimate goal is to be reblogged.

imagistic tweets that don’t require any Photoshop

{dregs}: follow the final lights of the twilight!
{rites of passage}: intrude in the hidden passageways!
{invisible comets}: don’t care about particles of dust!

***

We live by cacophonies (by the ether).
There are stars that resemble snowflakes.
Birds & fantasies.—Philosophy
& the silver (virtual) spaces.

Virtual Diaspora

The sky is not stagnant at all
because every bit of it is a map.
My poetical mind can’t measure the distance
between my shadow and the sun.
I used to envy the birds because they can assume many identities.
They always discover new moons and new stars.
They can (even) measure the distance between their shadows
and invisible entities.
Today there are screens everywhere.—
Complex maps. Provocative poetics.
I no longer envy the birds
as I can sink {tectonically} in the abyss of the web.

A Cybernetic Sonnet    

Twitter for breakfast. Facebook for lunch.
YouTube & Facebook for dinner.
This is not the whole story. This is just the gist.
Dawn begins to emit the first lights:
(BlurRED) eyes are still wide open.
Nerves are still bound to a vicious circle:
—A labyrinth of (free) fettered movements.
—A fake flood of encrypted happiness is inun[dating] the soul.
Everything becomes a code;
a sphere where liberty becomes a jail,
the human voice  becomes a replica of a hollow echo,
& humanity becomes a faint tincture. {Don’t forget Dada is a code!},

& persons become mere Dadaist entities encoded in a techno-sutra,
waiting for that technocratic saviour to have a happy-ending coda.

Steve Slavin

The Broadway Actors Matrimonial Service

My name is Sergei and I managed to get out of Romania almost thirty years ago by paying an American woman $10,000 to marry me. We got married at City Hall, just a few hundred feet from the Brooklyn Bridge, and I never saw her again.

I got a job working for my boyhood friend, Serene, who also came here by marrying an American. But they actually loved each other, and remain married to this day.

Serene had always liked the theater, and he hired me to assist him. He was what is called a house paperer. Every day he bought up several hundred theater tickets for off-Broadway plays – usually for just two or three dollars apiece – and resold them for eight or ten dollars.

Everybody came out ahead. The ticket buyers got deeply discounted seats without having to wait on long lines, and picked up their tickets within blocks of the theater. The actors play to full houses. And Serene made money. So what was not to like?

Serene had three other Romanians working for him, none of whom had a “Green Card,” which would have entitled them to work here legally. Virtually all of the ticket buyers were regulars, and everything was on the up-and-up.

But after a couple of years, I began to grow restless. So I decided to move on. I did a little of this and a little of that, while I always had my house papering gig to fall back on.

It wasn’t until about twenty-five years later that my luck suddenly changed. My friend Caroline asked me for “a great big favor.”

How big?”

“Well, Sergei, I’ll let you be the judge of that.”

Caroline, who is a fairly prominent author, had not been to her office in over two weeks. Why? Someone had been murdered in the building.

Like me, Caroline is nocturnal, never getting up before two or three in the afternoon. Luckily, her office is in a building that stays open 24/7. But on the downside, it is largely unoccupied after 8 or 9 pm.

“So would you be able to stay with me for five or six hours, while I go through all my mail, and try to get a little work done?”

“Sure. But why don’t you just take all the mail home?”

“Three reasons. First, it’s too much to bring home. I’d rather have a messy office than a messy apartment. Second, I’d then have to lug some of it back to the office. And third, the main reason I rent the office is to go through the mail and store my files.”

I love Caroline, and one of her charms is that she can be a little compulsive. In fact, she’s written three books on organizing your life, and she had won some kind of award from a group that advocates for people with psychological disorders similar to her own.

So there was no way I could argue against her logic. “Of course Caroline. I would be most happy to help you.”

Great! Maybe bring along a book to read. I promise it won’t be more than six hours.”

At 8pm the next evening, we met in front of an old seven-storey building on Third Ave. just below 14th Street. A uniformed guard asked for our IDs and had us sign in. Then he went back to whatever he was watching on a small TV and we took the elevator to the top floor. We walked down a long corridor lined with doors with frosted windows.

As we walked, I asked, “Are these all offices?”

“I think so. If they came in dress sizes, mine would be a 1. In fact, my office is actually divided into two cubicles.”

“Who has the other one?”

“Sergei, did you ever hear of Elaine Champagne?”

“I’m afraid not. I just got off the boat.”

“You got off the boat twenty-five years ago, Anyway, Elaine was a very highly regarded theatrical agent.”

“What happened to her? No wait! Let me guess: she drank too much of the bubbly stuff and lost all of her clients.”

Worse! Much worse! Her son, who was in his mid-twenties, and a newly-wed, committed suicide.”

I just stared at Caroline.

“She hasn’t been back to her office since then. Not even to pick up her mail. And for all I know, maybe all of her clients did leave her.”

“That is such an awful story. You’re not in touch with her?”

“I’ve tried calling her and leaving messages. But it’s been two years. The only thing I know is that she still pays the rent on her office.”

We stopped at a door near the end of the hall, and she let us in. It was a windowless room divided into two cubicles, each about ten by twelve feet.

Caroline immediately got down to work, and I squeezed into Elaine Champagne’s cubicle. It was almost entirely filled with stacks of mail. Imagine if you went to the main post office when they were on strike.

I cleared off her chair and a little space on her desk. But I had to be careful not to cause an avalanche. There had to be tens of thousands of pieces of mail. I began going through a small stack. On top was a postcard with a glossy headshot of a smiling guy who reminded me of Ashton Kutcher. On the back was a note about a showcase he was staring in. Next was a card from a beautiful woman who proudly noted her appearance in a Volvo commercial.

I went through another dozen cards before it struck me that nobody had a clue that Elaine Champagne was no longer in the industry. They were doing mass mailings to every New York theatrical agent in the hopes that one would take them on. How sad is that?

I kept reading. A lot of the notes struck a personal tone, as if Ms. Champagne closely followed the actors’ careers: “In case you missed me on the HBO special, it will be rebroadcast next Sunday at 4pm.” Or, “Please keep me in mind for a role, however small, in any upcoming musicals.”

Finally, we were ready for a break. Caroline explained that hundreds of these cards still arrived every week. Everybody needed a theatrical agent – even one who might be terminally depressed. When I went back to the mail, I decided to put all the headshot cards into two neat piles – boys in one pile and girls in the other. I’m not that much of a neatnik, but an idea was beginning to form, and I knew that I would find a use for them.

When we were getting ready to leave, I asked Caroline if I could take some of the cards home.

“Sure! Take all of them! God only knows if Elaine will ever be back!”

So I filled a couple of shopping bags, and we made our way down to the street. I walked her home and then spent the rest of the night figuring out what I would do with the cards. Early the next afternoon when I woke up, I grabbed a piece of paper and wrote down these words: The Broadway Actors Matrimonial Service. It turned out to be the best idea I had ever had.

Remember the $10,000 I paid an American woman to marry me? What we had had has long been known as a “Green Card marriage,” because an immigrant who marries an American can get an expedited Green Card, or work permit. There are hundreds of thousands of Eastern European men and women who would agree to pay someone a lot more than $10,000 to go through with this charade.

So far, so good. Foreigners are willing to pay their way into the United States, and there are Americans willing to be paid to marry them. So why not arrange marriages between Eastern Europeans and American actors and actresses?

Tens of thousands of actors live in New York, but only a very small percentage of them can support themselves by acting – or doing commercials. Most of them get by with relatively low-paying jobs like waiting tables, tending bar, doing office temp work, and providing childcare. Many of them were saddled with huge student debts. I was sure that some would jump at the chance to pick up a sizeable amount of money by agreeing to a Green Card marriage.

But wait: there’s more! What if we could add a sweetener? Even more than money, what most actors crave is finding a theatrical agent. Let me add here that we’re not talking about just some schmuck who claims to be an agent, but can’t do anything for his clients that they can’t do on their own. No, I mean a real, honest-to-goodness, seasoned, respected, and legitimate theatrical agent.

I talked this over with Serene. He had an idea. There were three agents who shared an office on Broadway in the forties. They had a perfect location. There was only one problem. Their landlord wanted to double their rent. There was no way they could manage it. And there wasn’t any other suitable space they could afford in the theatrical district.

Serene made the connection. “If we set up a bunch of Green Card marriages of actors and Eastern Europeans – and take a cut of the dowry – we could keep these agents in business.”

“Wow!” I immediately saw the light. “And then we could offer their services to the new brides and grooms as a kind of wedding present.” Leave it to two Romanian immigrants to make the American dream come true.

In a few weeks a couple of our old friends in Romania had set up a website on which were headshots of dozens of very attractive actors and actresses. Are you wondering why we bothered setting up in Romania? Well, think about it! If you saw your picture on someone’s website – and they were using it to make money, wouldn’t you demand that they stop?

But if that website happened to be in a country like Romania or Moldavia or Russia – it would be much less likely that they would comply. And it might be almost impossible to sue.

Another potential problem would also be averted. While green card marriages are legal, the State Department would find ways to shut us down if we operated in the U.S.

On Valentine’s Day of 2011, a few dozen actors and actresses received the following e-mail:

Within hours after our e-mail went out, we began receiving replies. Some were a little nasty: “How DARE you invade my privacy!” “DIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” “Rot in Hell!”

Others were somewhat quizzical: “Is this a joke?” “Are you legit?” “How did you get my e-mail address?”

But a few actually asked how they could sign up.

In the meanwhile, we spread the word through the social media and some carefully placed ads throughout the former Soviet bloc nations for green card seekers. We were completely upfront that it would cost them $50,000.

The response was unbelievable! Serene and I joked that we should become ordained ministers and perform mass marriages at Yankee Stadium. Our Romanian counterparts addressed us as the Rev Serene and the Rev Sergei. That made us feel like real Americans.

On June 3rd Serene and I witnessed the first marriage, which was held at City Hall. And before the summer was over, there were twenty-three more. We were on our way.

Just before Christmas, a new bride, who had signed with one of our agents got a part in a Broadway play. To celebrate, Serene and I had dinner at Sardi’s.

“So what’s our next move?”

“I don’t know, Sergei. You’re the idea man.”

“Thanks, Serene. You wanna know what I was thinking?”

“Sure.”

“Well, with all our contacts and the money we’ve been making, why don’t we produce our own play?”

“OK, I’m listening.”

“I’ve already got the title. We’ll call it, ‘The Broadway Actors Matrimonial Service.’”

“So far, so good.”

“We already have the cast.”

“We do?”

“Sure Serene. Our newlyweds.”

“That’s going to be a pretty large cast.”

“If we were making a movie, most of them would be extras. Well actually, we can give them relative short speaking parts.”

Serene sat there letting this all sink in. Then I continued.

“Now hold on to your seat. Our play is going to be on Broadway.”

“What are you nuts, Sergei? Who would put our play on Broadway?”

We will!”

“Sergei, you are one crazy Romanian! We’re talking about filling the house with at least 500 tushies. How can we possibly do that night-after-night?”

I didn’t say anything. After maybe six or eight seconds Serene began to smile. Then we burst out laughing. We would paper our own house!

“One week, limited engagement. Eight performances, which comes to ‘selling’ 4,000 seats. If we give each performer a couple of free tickets for each performance, that would take care of almost half the seats. And who knows: Maybe we’ll even sell some tickets.”

Three months later, we were ready for opening night. There were no previews performances. We knew we would lose a lot of money on our scheme, but we were not at all prepared for what happened next. Predictably the critics were brutal. If you think of what Bialystock and Bloom had counted on happening when they put on Springtime for Hitler, it turns out “The Broadway Actors Matrimonial Service” exceeded even those low expectations. “Complete Shit!” headlined one of the kinder reviews we received. And unlike Bialystock and Bloom’s play, ours was not perceived by audiences as a comedy. It was, by far, the worst play they had ever seen.

A reviewer for The Times suggested that if Tonys were given for “the worst” in all major categories, our play would make a clean sweep – except for the acting. As he pointed out, “Even the world’s greatest acting ensemble could not have rescued this piece of drek!”

Alongside its review, Variety placed a cartoon with this caption: “What Hirschfeld would have drawn had he still been alive.” Above the caption was a blank sheet of paper.

As word spread about the worst play in the history of Broadway, the completely unexpected happened. Legitimate ticket demand actually started climbing, and we were able to hold the play over for another week, and then still another. Audiences flocked to see for themselves just how bad a Broadway play could be. And they were not disappointed.

Our play finally closed after a very respectable six-month run. One week later an e-mail blast went to over 2,000 actors and actresses:

Sylvia Petter

Listening to the Engineers of the Imagination

In 2003, I submitted the following paper to a conference in Vienna on The Unifying Aspects of Culture and spoke about the need for writers to break down what I perceived as barriers of the mind against them sharing their work on the Internet. Thirteen years later, hardly a writer is not on the Net in some way, be it through online journals, blogs, Amazon or social media.

2003 was also a year full of hope for an information society heralded by a World Summit that to my mind has itself now become a tired apparatus for stakeholders to pay lip service to a not so brave and no longer so new world, although in the background a new world order is becoming visible despite efforts to uphold a mechanism once noble but sadly stuck in a past already relegated to history.

Back in 2003, concerns that may have kept writers and artists at bay were cyber security and freedom of expression. Today these concerns rule and have spawned industries of their own – either for or against.  Yet, writers write. The word has never been so strong. The information society, however, has become parcelled up into delineated areas ruled by political belligerency and greed. What has been lost in the thirteen years since the first preparatory meetings for an information society is not the technology – no, that has been striding forward apace – but ethics and empathy, human features no machine can replace.  Control is of the essence, by whom and for what, nobody seems to care, as long as the pie is negotiated, and après moi le deluge.

But writers write, so instead of the pundits and politicians with use-by-dates, why not listen to writers? More and more journalists are being killed, imprisoned and muzzled. Even poets are dangerous in the eyes of a growing number of would-be czars and rulers. Self-censorship, a subtle control spinoff of the powers that be, is stronger than ever. Listen to the writers of fiction: Orwell’s 1984 has become part of the vernacular, but a second look at the Stieg Larsson tales may throw light on a cabal, as does Timothy Findley´s Famous Last Words. Not just Kafka pointed to Amerika! Nobel Prize-winning US author Sinclair Lewis even foresaw the rise of Donald Trump in his 1935 novel It Can´t Happen Here. Margaret Atwood´s dystopian novel, The Handmaid´s Tale, is as topical as ever as a picture of how far we have come. It´s all been said, but do we listen? Just fiction?

Writers are writing. And they are writing on the Net. There are stories on Twitter, almost allegories, memes cry out for our attention, cartoons and artwork. But those who vote in international fora, those who veto and bomb, those who form alliances, which on a smaller scale could be considered as those of the abused and depraved, in short the bully powers in search of a copycat, are given full hearing and may act with impunity.

Rather than a focus on IoT, the Internet of Things, surely we should be focussing on ensuring that the information society nurtures its humanity rather than pursuing Faustian deals in favour of a New World Order lacking in empathy and soul. Writers and artists, the engineers of the imagination, needed to be heard in 2003 and still need to be heard today.

Walter Hoelbling

numbers game

our lives are fraught with numbers

so many fractions of a second faster in a race
most wins on record   best jury votes
highest flight   deepest dive   most goals
meters of rising sea levels
millions of refugees   and more displaced
tens of thousands  honor killings
thousands of deaths with Ebola
millions of Zika virus victims next year
billions of deficit or profit in import/export
or the stock exchange
votes in elections    or for beauty queens

polls    tweets   virtual friends  & followers
likes on the social media    on hellopoetry

we have been taught to measure our status
our importance   and the significance of our lives
in clicks of other peoples’ digital devices

even our time has been reduced to numbers
the digital has long replaced the comprehensive
instead of the round disk that shows 12 hours
suggesting the duration of a normal day
we have a punctual display  without the whole
the cyclical has lost against the linear

0101010101010101010101010101010101
we all look forward to our numbered future
no past  and very little present

our hands on smart phones    homes    TVs
pushing a button makes things move
swishing a screen displays the world

over all that we easily forget
that we ourselves have been reduced to numbers
of customers for businesses
of voters for the politicians
of workers for the corporations
of citizens for our nations
digital quantities is what we have become

and if we take a global view
we are a part  of seven billion plus
that currently inhabit our earth

all of which do expect their individuality
be honored  and their dignity respected

numbers don’t  honor individuality
they simply count the units
items  or people  are for them the same

it’s left to us to find a way
that leaves the numbers in their place
yet guarantees us dignity
as individual members of the human race

Cyberspace – die Verbundenheit der Differenz

Kommunikation ohne Grenzen
Eine Einführung

Anfang der 90er Jahre tauchten die ersten Klammeraffen in den Adreßzeilen der Geschäftskarten auf, und ich erinnere mich, dass Setzer immer nachfragten, ob bei der sonderbaren Adresse nicht ein Leerzeichen dazwischen gehöre. Damals war ein Faksimile noch der Standard in Sachen Kommunikation, und elektronische Post – ausgenommen die Bereiche Forschung, Wissenschaft, Militär und vereinzelte Sparten der Industrie – dem Bürger weitgehend unbekannt.

Dann kamen CompuServe und eWorld und ich war 1994 stolzer Inhaber meiner ersten Internet-Adresse: gangan@eworld.com, wie sich das für einen Mac-User gehörte. Die Begeisterung hielt sich aber noch in Grenzen, denn es gab kaum jemanden außerhalb der USA und Australiens, mit dem man kommunizieren konnte – und der Chat mit irgendwelchen anderen Usern, die zufällig auch gerade eingeloggt waren, erwies sich bald als Zeitverschwendung. Online zu sein war damals auch noch sehr teuer und Modems noch sehr langsam.

Dennoch: die kleine geschützte eWorld-Community hatte bereits einen Ausgang ins wilde weit offene Web – natürlich ohne Sicherheitsgarantie – man startete damals Netscape 1.0 und war im Netz. Auch wenn man noch nicht viel damit anzufangen wußte. Aber eWorld wurde Anfang 1996 geschlossen und ich war daher gezwungen, mir rasch IT-Kenntnisse anzueignen, um selbst einzuwählen. Wenige Wochen später, am 6. April 1996, war meine erste eigene Webseite(1) live, und jeder konnte sie überall auf der Welt sehen! Na ja, jeder, der gewillt war, die damals noch viel zu großen Grafiken über ein 14.4 Modem abzuladen – und das waren im 2. Quartal 1996 erst bescheidene 1.635, im 2. Quartal 1997 dann schon 24.745, und im 2. Quartal 2000 mit inzwischen brauchbarer Bandweite und längst optimierten Seiten bereits 230.975 Zugriffe.(2)

„Meinen Bedarf an einem globalen, multilingualen Medium im Verlagsbereich verdanke ich in erster Linie dem Umstand, dass ich 1989 von Wien nach Sydney umgezogen bin, und zusätzlich zur österreichischen auch australische zeitgenössische Literatur – The Ozlit Collection – verlegt habe. Das Internet und speziell das World Wide Web war für eine Weiterentwicklung über diese große Entfernung hinweg geradezu ideal“, schrieb ich damals im Editorial von Gangway.(3)

Das Literaturmagazin ist acht Jahre (Anm. d. Hrsg.: 2016 zwanzig Jahre) alt, verbucht Millionen Zugriffe und hat nach dem Surf-Boom vor zwei, drei Jahren, wo noch überall neugierig drauf geklickt wurde zwar wieder weniger Zugriffe, dafür aber zahlreiche regelmäßige Leser: in den letzten 12 Monaten haben 48.980 Besucher 102.150 Seiten mit 313.186 Files in 345.586 Zugriffen gelesen.(4)

Aber was ist Cyberspace eigentlich, wobei wir in unserer Betrachtung auf verwandte Begriffe wie AI, VR und Robotics nicht eingehen wollen, und warum ist der Titel – die Verbundenheit der Differenz – so unscharf? Vielleicht, weil der Begriff selbst wie ein Kunstwerk empfunden werden kann: jeder, der einen virtuellen Raum betritt, sieht ihn durch eigene Augen. Für die einen bedeutet dieser Raum reine Information, ein bodenloses Archiv, durchnetzt von Datenbanken und Suchmaschinen. Für andere wieder dient er der Transaktion, dem Handel mit Aktien, der Erledigung von Rechnungen und anderen Bankgeschäften. Die meisten allerdings verstehen ihn wohl als einen Raum der Kommunikation, also Email, IRC (Internet Relay Chat), Foren, Blogs und ähnliches, wo also Interaktion im Gegensatz zu den beiden ersten Nutzungsformen nicht mit Maschinen, sondern mit anderen Menschen stattfindet, selbst wenn deren Identität oft nicht bekannt, ja oftmals absichtlich anonym gehalten ist. Wer mit einem Alias oder Nickname in einen Chatraum einsteigt verhält sich eben anders, als wenn er einen realen Raum physisch betritt.

Dergestalt entfalten sich nun die Themen dieser Sektion. Dieser Raum schafft Verbundenheit trotz Differenz oder gerade auch durch Differenz. Dieser Raum, der erst seit gut zehn Jahren jedermann zugänglich ist, schafft sich aber auch seine eigenen Regeln, eine Netiquette (Internet Etikette), die über alle Kulturen und Sprachen hinweg globale Gültigkeit haben muss.

In meinem Fall schafft das die Verknüpfung der alten Welt mit dem fünften Kontinent durch Literaturprojekte und eine zweisprachige Autoren-Community am Netz, oder bei Andreas Metzner-Szigeth das „Network of Excellence“ zum Thema „Kulturelle Diversität und neue Medien – ihre Wechselwirkungen als Moment europäischer Integration“ oder Interkulturalität und Interdisziplinarität im Cyberspace am Beispiel des Projekts „Lateinamerika-Studien Online“. Franz Krahberger hat sicherlich aktuelle Einsichten zu Electronic Publishing im Feld einer globalen medialen Kultur gewonnen, und Antonio Ferrero vermutet gar eine sprachliche Revolution der jüngeren Generation in McLuhans Globalem Dorf. Sylvia Petter sieht im Cyberspace auch viel mehr als nur Computer, und Siegfried Holzbauer stellt die Frage, ob dieser virtuelle Raum gar ein Irrgarten oder Labyrinth sei.

Zurück zu mir. Zurück zur Literatur. Wäre ich nicht 16.000 Kilometer weit weggezogen, würde ich vielleicht weiterhin das Papier dem digitalisierten Buch(5) vorziehen. So aber sitze ich am anderen Ende der Welt, und alle paar Minuten ertönt auf meinem Schreibtisch das vertraute „You’ve got Mail“ Glöckchen und ich verbringe wohl ein Drittel meines Lebens mit Kommunikation in virtuellen Communities mit Menschen, die mir wahrscheinlich so gut wie nie begegnen werden. Austausch von Informationen, weil der Weg oft zu weit ist, OK. Aber woher entsteht dann diese Vertrautheit, wenn ein Name in der Senderliste wiederholt auftaucht. Dem Kollegen Krahberger begegne ich heute zum ersten Mal im wirklichen Leben, virtuell kennen wir einander aber schon seit den Urzeiten der elektronischen Medien, sind per du und scheinen einigermaßen vertraut miteinander. Für Menschen, die nicht so lange im Cyberspace Erfahrungen gesammelt haben, mag das seltsam erscheinen, für Franz und mich ist das aber ein selbstverständlicher Teil dieser neuen Wirklichkeit. Und ähnlich steht es auch mit den anderen ReferentInnen dieser Sektion. Acht Menschen, die miteinander nicht verbunden wären, gäbe es nicht diese Konferenz um das Verbindende der Kulturen im virtuellen Raum.

Ich betreibe verschiedene Homepages – ich nenne sie meine Drei Türen zu Kunst und Literatur. Aber all das ist ohnehin online dokumentiert.(6) Darin integriert sind allerdings Emailgruppen. Und in diesen online Communities entwickelten sich zahlreiche virtuelle Freundschaften. Das ist das tatsächlich Verbindende der Kulturen, da wird in einem Sprach- und Kulturgemisch die Welt gespiegelt, wie das früher nur am Biertisch Wirklichkeit war. Aber wie im wirklichen Leben gibt es auch immer wieder Streit, weil es nicht immer eindeutig ist, welche Emotionen mit einem rasch getippten Satz einhergehen, selbst wenn Emotikons wie z.B. 🙂 beigefügt werden. Oder weil Informationen aus verschiedenen Gruppierungen nicht synchronisiert sind, oder verschiedene Sprecher auf verschiedenen Bühnen auftreten oder nur teilweise oder nicht im Kontext zitiert werden … und so ein Flaming kann schnell entstehen und sehr tief gehen, bis hin zur öffentlichen Beschimpfung.

So gesehen stimmt der Begriff des virtuellen Raums als Plattform einer Kommunikation ohne Grenzen eben doch nur teilweise. Die fehlenden technischen, politischen oder kulturellen Grenzen werden bald durch zutiefst menschliche Grenzen ersetzt. Egal, ob nun direkt gesprochen, in einer Gruppe diskutiert, per Brief oder Email korrespondiert, SMS getextet, per Mobil- oder Videotelefon kommuniziert wird, früher oder später wird aus jeder neuen technischen Lösung immer wieder dasselbe alte menschliche Problem.

Gerald Ganglbauer TUAC, Wien 2004

Aus dem Buch: Das Verbindende der Kulturen | Book: The Unifying Aspects of Cultures | Livre: Les points communs des cultures, sowie TRANS Nr.15, Internet-Zeitschrift für Kulturwissenschaften, TUAC Konferenz.

(1) http://www.gangan.com/ (2) http://www.gangan.com/de/stats.shtml (3) http://www.gangan.com/lit-mag/magazine/editorial.shtml (4) http://www.gangway.net/mystats/ (5) http://www.gangan.com/ebooks/ (6) Three doors to art and literature (1996 bis 2016 HTML) gangan.com | gangart.com | gangway.net (seit 2018 WordPress) gangan.com, gangan.at und gangway.at
Summary by Month
Month Daily Avg Monthly Totals
Hits Files Pages Visits Sites KBytes Visits Pages Files Hits
Jan 2016 3840 3109 1437 487 4081 1094293 7311 21565 46637 57609
Dec 2015 2755 2265 987 425 7504 1748792 13181 30608 70239 85426
Nov 2015 2467 2067 890 390 7006 1897674 11710 26700 62013 74034
Oct 2015 2544 2194 1006 375 7502 1835693 11643 31207 68024 78883
Sep 2015 2588 2268 1014 306 6896 1752287 9189 30436 68041 77664
Aug 2015 2348 2107 1071 368 6465 1815403 11426 33224 65335 72790
Jul 2015 2103 1848 880 361 6070 1576243 11199 27283 57309 65221
Jun 2015 2104 1722 823 833 5821 1277402 11494 24710 51684 63141
May 2015 2056 1674 740 351 5469 1310391 10910 22961 51904 63746
Apr 2015 1384 1167 535 253 3310 803238 7601 16062 35022 41525
Mar 2015 1435 1247 625 298 4469 942886 9261 19393 38665 44512
Feb 2015 1555 1308 645 310 4320 921022 8680 18085 36633 43550
Totals 16975324 123605 302234 651506 768101

Daten vom Jänner 2016, gangan.com

Hazel Smith

Lit-Mag #46 – Madrigalesque

The wrong Tom Jenks

I looked him up on the Internet but it’s the wrong Tom Jenks
histories banged together,  homepages for high jinks
it repeats as it permutes, but it also rejigs the past
welcome to the mix and match of discombobulated planes
to cross is not only to traverse,  to cross means also to conjoin
organisms tear apart the niches they construct
earthworms are proto alchemists, they switch the soil to gold
a jumble, a mosaic, a mix-up, a montage
conversations build a cartography that maps an alien field of art
nations bounce back from combat into an adaptive ache
agendas pulse erratically, expectation swings its chronic beat
she amputates accusations, screws on prosthetic myths
he felt attracted by her one day and repulsed by her the next
variants are deviations that play bad tricks on genes
revamping your story is unwise but it doesn’t mean certain guilt
a treatise resolves as tealeaves, fragments disarm her fists

 

Also see: The Blue Bus

Tegan Jane Schetrumpf

Lit-Mag #46 – Madrigalesque

How can you?

With the pop, pop, of apoptosis in your ear

weave and dodge words

you’d rather not hear?

There’s a pulse.  Diastolic da-dum.

The beat of a drum.
Empty skin.

And the dong.
The dignified chime
of some grandfather clock
measuring time with his hickory switch.
You bare two timid cheeks
and receive the cuts.

Shaping lies
with your lips
carving soap with your tongue
in playing card housing
for that’s how it’s done.

Do you know?

Each day that you swallow
dab with your napkin
you waste
hasten

your final thought.
You’ll be angry then.
You’ll

wish for the Orphic voice to call another lifetime.
(The one underneath that you should have been living)

regret

(each mistake)

(those times you left the ache to burn inside instead of howling)

But you danced, didn’t you?  Danced – cha cha cha.

One, two, cha cha cha.

Your moves,
but learned steps.

When you cut out your tongue
thicken ear drums
blind eyes

You make it dark.
Silent.
Mute.

One more to sing rhymes
of ‘The Way Things Are.’

One less to imagine
the best of our times,

to outlast the whisk
the tsk tsk of fear.

Can you hear? It approaches.

Pop, pop. It approaches.

Nova Longhurst

Lit-Mag #46 – Madrigalesque

Three Poems

Her

Lips burning of subdued embers,
Her words brand you, inescapable.

Eyes as old as amber,
Her gaze tells your story, unwritten.

Masked by the mud of her mother,
Her power precedes her, enthralling.

Rokkr Náttar, shadow of the oncoming night,
She destroys me, inescapable love.

 

Purified Asphyxiation

Cast me down in the cleansing blue.
Breathing frozen soliloquies of you.

Fractals ossifying mangled fetters,
Seeking freedom in profligate letters.

Clutching at greener pastures,
Fertilized by the efferent heartless.

Cast me down in to the cleansing blue,
To extirpate afflictions of you.

 

Taste Buds

Bulbous buds of brilliant senses
Taste your breath, your life, your soul’s existence

Wine glasses shattered on your lips
The life blood of which bitters your kiss, your caress

The perfume of carbonated city streets
Nestled against cement bridges, your nervous-systems.

Leaving dust upon Zemí’s ancient tongue.
Your breath, your life, your soul’s existence, you are mine.

Roger Dean / Greg White / Hazel Smith

Lit-Mag #46 – Madrigalesque

The Blue Bus

(written for The Blue Bus experimental poetry reading series in London)

there are days when no one knows where the blue bus is
but there are always times when you know it will arrive out of the blue
then you are riding amongst colours only, gone with the winding
saluting the destinations as they pass you by, making passing your destiny
the blue bus doesn’t give you the blues, but the blues was banished by segregated bussing
the blue bus is neither bone nor skin, neither fever nor shivers
you remember other buses, the bus to school, the fears of being late
daydreams scribbled like automatic writing on muggy windows
the moment they lock the doors I want to jump off
it seems (though no statistical data can nail it) that more people claim blue as their favourite colour than any other
while The Big Blue Bus is a municipal bus operator in the Westside region of Los Angeles
today I decide to pretend that everything is what it is and is no other
it’s odd the way we relish titles even though like people they are divorced from what they hope they are conveying
you remember all the buses that came and went, the ones you nearly missed, or deliberately let slip, but most of all the buses that though appointed never appeared
it says on the blue website that blue symbolism runs the gamut of emotionally-packed meanings
some of us have to write at speed to turn our recalcitrant wheels
the blue bus is what you imagine it to be, what you paint it to be, what you desire it to be
or so they say and as we know the saying is not the said, especially where performance is in the playground
sometimes the blue bus is just itself, pure blue, open to the seductions of sound, ploughing through the traffic jam of reason
sometimes it falters and becomes bus-like, reigned in by timetables and bus-stops, borders and controls
Rosa Parks stood up for sitting down anywhere on a bus and for the rights of all African Americans
but there are those who say she appealed easily to whites and could be smoothly assimilated by them without any shifting of position
to write is to move, to think is to mutate
it’s even a film, Blue, Kieslowsi,  about a musician
the blue bus is sometimes made of clay, sometimes made of silk, sometime made of feathers, but it always erects itself like a genie from a transmutable yet sustainable bottle
run by an invisible collective who have hidden histories of bizarre steering techniques, unorthodox gear changes, and tyre-kicking
usually when I ask where I can catch it I am greeted by incomprehension bordering on suspicion
but it is the blue bus which takes me everywhere, even to locations I will never reach
and even into this excuse for an improvisation which is not improvised but draws on an improvisatory aesthetic
the blue bus, the horse and carriage of sparring avant-gardes, whipping with abandon through the galloping streets of black Britain
it’s a funny thing, you know, but I can’t remember what the colour of the buses in Australia is

Hazel Smith (text, text performance)
Roger Dean (piano)
Greg White (electronics)

The Blue Bus was written for the Blue Bus experimental poetry reading series in London: I often like to write poems for specific occasions.  Originally it was conceived in a words-only form. This version employs an acoustic piano improvisation by Roger Dean and electronics by Greg White, including trumpet sounds by Phil Slater.
This recording was mixed and mastered by Greg White.

Note by Hazel Smith