The last temple in the north

In graduate school my poetry teachers would say, Stay clear of theory! Run away from Baudrillard, Foucault, Derrida— All that postmodern complexity, its dense linguistic curtains, its smoke and mirrors; those parables about the emptiness at the heart of the onion, the scintillating space in that final temple more alabaster than an egg or the Taj Mahal where nothing can live, not even love, not even poetry… But who was it said that once we understand we have nothing, then and only then can we approach poetry? And I was merely a girl from the highlands, a girl from a town on an old ivory map so far away in the hills and too too difficult to climb through limestone canyons to get to. So the friars at first simply said Hija de puta, there is no one there to count in our census, ergo it does not exist— Where they did not persist, others did. Look at our archives of poems in the shape of our enemies’ severed heads. Look at our feathered amulets, our chest plates studded with silence after silence, deconstructed into fearful significance.


In response to Via Negativa: Things to do with texts after Derrida.

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