drip drip ladies shoes, code, clues, cryptic lyf

CRYPTIC LYF (for sati)

the man with a bag of melons
meloned to bursting
yeah him

when blue plastic strains
against thick melon materiality
you’re on my mind

and when pink plastic
and when white plastic

all black plastic

the splitting bag is my way
of telling you
it’s you

from a closed window
from a distance of two floors
from someone else’s bed

what will i do when they
ban shopping bags: all
proliferations of my message?

the communicational
structure’s tensegrity 
will simply collapse

cigarettes are already on 
the wane nothing withstands
the happiness-health industry

google’s jolly fellow says
yeah him, i got the memo
no more smoke rings 

ok ok

i can’t use sodium lamps
too uniform ubiquitous
and they already signal 


looking at the entrails of birds
is unfashionable all that
occupational health & safety!

wifi is everywhere dial-up 
is no longer erratic you no 
longer find me in the trills brrreeeee

bbbrrrrrr ddddeeeee

formlessness trumps formation
industrial smog as symptom
of a collective brown study

one earth hour for buyer's remorse
city looks so pretty from z sky
and all very cockney moody

ok ok 

just the melons then
1999 put your lights on


Wind's writing about Morelli has attracted the attention of scholars to a long-neglected passage of Freud's famous essay The Moses of Michelangelo (1914). At the beginning of the second paragraph, Freud writes: "Long before I had any opportunity of hearing about psychoanalysis, I learnt that a Russian art-connoisseur, Ivan Lermolieff, had caused a revolution in the art galleries of Europe by questioning the authorship of many pictures, showing how to distinguish copies from originals with certainty, and constructing hypothetical artists for those works of art whose former supposed authorship had been dis- credited. He achieved this by insisting that attention should be diverted from the general impression and main features of a picture, and he laid stress on the significance of minor details, of things like the drawing of the fingernails, of the lobe of an ear, of aureoles and unconsidered trifles which the copyist neglects to imitate and yet which every artist executes in his own characteristic way. I was then greatly interested to learn that the Russian pseudonym concealed the identity of an Italian physician called Morelli, who died in 1891. It seems to me that his method of inquiry is closely related to the technique of psychoanalysis. It, too, is accustomed to divine secrets and concealed things from unconsidered or unnoticed details, from the rubbish-heap, as it were, of our observations (auch diese ist gewohnt, aus gering geschiitzten oder nicht beachteten Ziigen, aus dem Abhub - dem 'refuse' - der Beobachtung, Geheimes und Verborgene zu erraten). "


But what significance did Morelli's essays have for Freud? Freud himself indicates it: the proposal of an interpretative method based on debris, on marginal data, considered as detectors. This way, details usually considered unimportant or even trivial, "low," could provide the key for understanding the highest product of human spirit: "my opponents," Morelli wrote ironically - just the sort of irony Freud was bound to like - "are pleased to define me as one who is unable to see the spiritual meaning of a work of art and therefore attaches particular importance to outward signs such as the shape of hands, ears, or even, horribile dictu, of such a disagreeable object as the fingernails." Morelli too could have appropriated the Virgilian motto Freud was fond of and had chosen as an epigraph to his Interpretation of Dreams: "Flectere si nequeo Superos, Acheronta movebo. "("If Heaven I cannot bend, then Hell I will arouse!") Besides, these marginal data were revealing, in Morelli's opinion, because they represented a moment in which the artist's subordination to cultural tradition was loosened and replaced by a purely individual trait, which was repeated "as a consequence of habit and almost unconsciously. " Even more than the reference to the unconscious - not exceptional in that period - what is striking here is the identification of the intimate core of artistic personality with elements that are beyond the control of consciousness. 


At present only etymology reveals the extremely ancient relationship between medical semiotics and other sciences based on the deciphering of signs. The epistemological model that unites them, beyond all differences, probably traces back to divination. This does not imply - as some have asserted - that these particular practices were historically preceded by a general science of signs; far from it. The oracle, the priest, the interpreter of divine language, the medical man (social figures that were for a long time merged into a single individual) obviously are much more ancient than the semiologist or his direct ancestor. 

In this group of sciences one undeniably differs from all the others: philology, the science that deciphers and interprets languages and writings other than those of the gods. Its first development, made possible by the social system of the Greek polis, was a decisive event for the secularization and democratization (potential, at least) of culture. But philology too is a science of signs: and as such it can be included in this group of disciplines, that might be defined as based on signs. What unites them is, 1. their being based on the deciphering of signs; 2. their having as objects individual cases, situations, and documents, inasmuch as they are individual; 3. their attaining a knowledge that implies an inevitable margin of hazardousness, of conjecture. As regards this last point, which is decisive, one should consider the role of conjecture both in the various forms of mantics and in philology.

Carlo Ginzburg, Clues: the Roots of a Scientific Paradigm (1976), pp. 273-288


Any work of art can be viewed as a message to be decoded by an addressee. But unlike most messages, instead of aiming at transmitting a univocal meaning, the work of art succeeds precisely insofar as it appears ambiguous and open-ended. The notion of the open work can be satisfactorily reformulated according to Jakobson’s definition of the “poetic” function of language. Poetic language deliberately uses terms in a way that will radically alter their referential function (by establishing, among them, syntactic relationships that violate the usual laws of the code). It eliminates the possibility for a univocal decoding; it gives the addressee the feeling that the current code has been violated to such an extent that it can no longer help. The addressee thus finds himself in the situation of a cryptographer forced to decode a message whose code is unknown, and who therefore has to learn the code of the message from the message itself. At this point, the addressee will find himself so personally involved with the message that his attention will gradually move from the signifieds, to which the message was supposed to refer, to the structure itself of the signifiers, and by so doing will comply with the demands of the poetic message, whose very ambiguity rests on the fact that it proposes itself as the main object of attention: “This emphasis of the message on its own self is called the poetic function.” When we speak of art as an autonomous process, as form for form’s sake, we are stressing a particular aspect of the artistic message which communication theory and structural linguistics would define as follows: “The set (Einstellung) toward the MESSAGE as such, focus on the message for its own sake, is the POETIC function of language.”

Umberto Eco, The Structure of Bad Taste (1989), pp. 195-6

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