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I feed my body less and want more the surplus
I was promised storehouses of grain plains of locust
don’t signify a thing without hunger
telos that defers its own ending
Which isn’t to say I’ve a vision
or can calculate a head of grain against a golden calf
in a crisis or pinch or hitch in which a child (there is always a child)
born tomorrow judges me for my lack
of discretion, brings legal action against my hunger, which wouldn’t have existed
were it not for the child’s face always looming
before me asking me to materialize what won’t
I stock my dreams like cans in a bunker I wait
for doom siphoning off a day here and there I store the future
in a sack with a hole through which a mouse lives and dies happy
I eat its shit knowingly and with envy of its tiny gut
Which isn’t to say I’ve promised anything
only that I’ve considered the balance I weighed the future
against my hunger and found it wanting found the surplus was only
my own body working twice as hard then harder hardening itself
against a future I had already consumed
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Both regulators and employers have embraced new technologies for on-the-job monitoring, turning a blind eye to unjust working conditions.
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.