Joshua Clover

(Berkeley, California)

THE FIRE SERMON - Poem by Joshua Clover

The poem must be on the side of riots looting barricades occupations manifestos communes slogans fire and enemies.
1. Red Epic


Mediators! matadors!
how trivial and objective this world is!
semiologists! stevedores!
how objective and trivial!
equally fucked we are
well not equally I have an MCM
aesthetic and a radio-controlled
death drive there are two parties
to every romance
the waged and the wager
and it has been getting harder
to decipher the difference
a throw of the dice will
never reveal the real subject
oh mediators! stevedores! etc.


Madrid is sometimes in flames
though confusingly the Spanish
Stairs are in Rome
which is often in flames
Oakland is sometimes pleasingly in flames
Athens is almost
always aflame also Thessaloniki
Big Data murmurs to me
the likelihood that at a given
profit rate in a given sector
a given household debt
a given wage deflation a given
neighborhood would be
in flames given fire is the unfettered
substance of the situation


To begin again from the beginning
to write only for one's friends
two lovers make a zero
two speculations make a hedge
if Tender Buttons had been
written by capital instead of
OBJECTS FOOD ROOMS
it would have a single section
called LABOR POWER
though technical language is not conducive
to enlisting popular support
if Lunch Poems
were the poetry of the future
it would be all like
I communize this I communize that


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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, April 18, 2018



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