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Nov 2018

The Whole Infernal Sequence

photo © reed o’beirne 2018

photo © reed o’beirne 2018

Into the face of the world, we come to go on this day, appointed by our dead generations

whose enraptured memory summons our separate destinies from the ever-westward expansion

of kaleidoscopic clouds of folly and unconstrained will full of confidence in the ultimate decay of the single star

in the single sky view of so many immortal masterpieces resisting our unfettered control over the freedom

to mount the scaffold and exalt the days long vanished from the firmament

in order to extinguish, without delay, the whole of everything held to the heart

as the cause of gallantry and pageantry and dirges in the long march of the shadowy returning spirits

dedicated to the exaltation of liberty on behalf of the exiled messenger airbrushed

from the photograph of men surrendering each to the other their memories of parricidal smoke and mirror card tricks shuffled just so

to keep and hold the secret revolutionary rights of the exiled mothers, daughters, and sisters

to sing along with the tocsin of reason heard throughout the whole universe

in order to say nothing more about it or all the hatreds and bitterness arisen from war and ruin and offense and perdition

out of the empty pretentions of superiority - now out of date - but equally constrained

to do what they do not command in this finest hour of power plant failures

teetering to tear down the whole grid after a pint of vodka and a pinch of red herring

raised to topple tyranny and oppression and to bring ruin upon that august destiny

of usurpation and resource extraction under the auspices of being risen at long last

from the dark night thought vanished, but now upon us

to recognize and declare the universal, inalienable and sacred right to remain answerless.


Hypertext entries above denote phrases derived from these source documents:

Declaration of the Rights of Woman, 1791

The Proclamation of the Irish Republic, 1916

Chief Seattle’s Treaty Oration, 1854 (the provenance of this speech is in question)

The Magna Carta, 1215

Martin Luther, 1520

Also referenced is this photograph of Elizabeth O’Farrell


A version of this text was performed for the Disasters of Peace program by Tzvet Lazarov in November 2018 at the Whitechapel Gallery in London. Watch it here.

© reed o’beirne 2018