Jul 102016

“I prefer the teeming crowd of souls to the teeming soul itself”, walkingtalkingwriting, please join the conversation:


I prefer the teeming crowd of souls to the teeming soul itself. This has
nothing to do with my material condition. Every kind of virtue is
found in a crowd: that humans in a crowd create their own paths as if
they are water that creates its own stream of water. How an individual,
alone, can do almost nothing. She cannot make children or be a poet
alone. If she grows carrots they are less delicious for she has no one
else to taste her carrots. She has a crowd of carrots but carrots alone.
How if she dies alone she is less than dead. How in a disaster, humans
in a crowd. How he might, alone, drinking a Michelob and watching
television, but in a crowd in a disaster carry an immobile man down
the stairs. The building falls around him but the man carrying the man
he does not know is not Hobbesian. He may die in this moment being
completely ordinary so not Hobbesian. Only the state and the man
who loves it are Hobbesian and even in a crowd, how at a party,
humans in a crowd. What causes the women to shout out in high
voices a woo-hoo in the parking lot, one two or three of them? What
causes the men, in the parking lot outside of the velvet room, to make
those deep dog woof cheers as they walk in the path the crowd has
made like how water makes a stream? This is the crowd, how it turns
the voice of one man or woman into a voice without words, and this
voice without words is the voice for the crowd. How this voice without
words is another poetry. How the remedy for the state is always the
crowd. How the state exists to blanket the crowd how poets exist to
advertise against the crowd how poetry is often the service of the state
how oh what a piece of work is the crowd that we work so hard
together to work against it. Every architect works against the crowd.
The architect is building only stadiums to corral it. How in a stadium
there is that fear of falling into it. How in a stadium there is so much
obedience not to the crowd but to what is not the crowd. How the
poets wish to sing the national anthem in the stadium. Where are the
grand halls, flat and open, in which the crowd can gather? Where is
the lack of elevation? In secret the architect builds for the crowd She
makes grand halls, flat and open, but these are only in her dreams, at
night, when she is sleeping as the crowd also sleeps. To dream with the
crowd is her cognitive surplus. At daylight the architect wakes alone
and sets off alone to plan against the crowd. At daylight the
philosopher wakes alone and goes back to his rational inquiry and does
not wonder, “what makes the crowd like water making a stream?” At
daylight the statesmen sends secret cables to the other statesmen who
send secret cables to the other statesmen who sends secret cables and
all of these statesmen and cables are against the crowd. How the crowd
is the first to go hungry. How the crowd is always leaking. How the
crowd is never neoliberal in its desires. How the crowd is its own
ideology. How the crowd will kill you and barely notice it. How it will
save you or rage if the state has made you dead. How the men and
boys who stand there with the guns shake and grit their teeth and
suffer, a little, as do the young male elephants who are exiled from the
family of elephants. How the crowd so often starts with women
together conspiring. How for this reason you are not allowed to see
women together in the movies conspiring unless it is about clothing or
a man. How the young male elephants who are the humans like the
young male elephants can hate the conspiring women and also the
crowd . I watch the girls I watch conspire as they play and this is the
seed of the crowd that could become later revolution or a party. I
prefer the crowd itself to what makes up the crowd. At night I dream
of a poetry for the crowd. I imagine the bodies pressed against each
other until there is not one set of feet left on the ground.

from My Common Ground (2011), Anne Boyer.