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Use-value sonnet




Tho the use-value of an item is linked more to functionaries than those really
crunching numbers & figuring its “electron
quotient,” no human
being could grow to the
state-maximum level of cognizance by simply reading 
or writing, or
one would need venture along roads
exposed by old, banned maps and those
vague, outmoded instruments used
for calculations of
where Aries or the big dipper have ended up after all things
formed by merging have been
disentangled, roughly sorted
back into their
respective columns.

To me this question is more aptly put
by Lucretius, who answers it in the following passage:


The first-beginnings then are of solid singleness; for they are a close dense mass of least parts, never put together out of a union of those parts, but rather prevailing in everlasting singleness.

But who’s to say what that is anyways—what’s more important
is tracing the path of the Arc of the Covenant.
I read a novel
once, about lurid pole-
cats studying how
best to gut
me, I only read
half as too many sex
scenes had my name in
them, I flunked
out while gestating, even moved
towns to get away from
graffiti in the form of my name
sprayed in tunnels,
suddenly on my t-shirts,
basically ruining my
shorts & making me grand
enemies with the growing
hoards of corruptible officials
who arrive daily upon my doorstep,
arms extended & beckoning
me for a large jar of homemade
treacle. I have no
money; ideas are winnowing;
we have been taught that
any given human or biological
entity can be copied,
or at least replaced in a molecular
sense, by another organism, either
crafted or
simply selected from
massive, completely-illegal reference
volumes. At this point
sexuality had been repackaged
into a secret grouping of complex
arithmetic games. But lo
as the name of the star comes
into focus, it is called Quartile,
it is called Bereavement, it is called Portion, it is called Sequin, it is called after the name
of your daughter, and it extends, called backwards
across even the small gaps between joints
& other hidden distances, known to none,
though it
contains no use, for even
those who see it.



Elijah Jackson is a writer from Los Angeles, now based in Berlin, where he facilitates workshops and readings
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