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Confront yourself to the point at which
you cannot move, or move slowly enough
it goes unnoticed, and only during
crepuscular hours. Is there anything more
stranger than your own voice telling you when
you didn’t tell it to? You are now unfull
of yourself, bursting with the long meal
worms of otherness, of reflection deflected
away from the counterpart, yet the details of being
human cannot be ignored. Sleep is a river of
selfishness, of psyche getting the better of you.
How will the man who has never once
seen a mirror, never stooped to a stream,
pick himself out of a lineup? It is not enough
that you have provided milk and cookies
to sustain what isn’t there. You must also eat.
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But I do miss the hymns, / the small, hard apples with their dimpled skin. I do miss / things.
The vast hinterlands of the Global South’s cities are generating new solidarities and ideas of what counts as a life worth living.
Protests in China are shining a light not only on the country’s draconian population management but restrictions on workers everywhere.