Hic Sunt Rhodus

The long-lasting word is the dead word, the long-knowing text a text of dead words, ordered. To arrange the words in ways that do our bidding, we snuff out life so they lay just where we leave them. Wherefore: only ordered words may matter. Therefore: orders issued, to mean just what we bide them mean. All unwanted, crawling, shifting, walking words, lest meanings placed so carefully escape the thoughts in which we place them. And so: dead words, must kill words before placing them. Would texts, dead words in sum, beat other than the march, sound more than pipe and drum? We, pursuant to our bidding, collect words with wide lives in the mouths of others and in the narrow after bide them lie still. Out of the mouths of others, we take them, dead. To make sense of the living world, the living words of living mouths, we march dead words into dead order. The book a burial ground.

This worry: that living words may do our bidding, but seldom will remain. We bide them, and they may abide, but their abiding may not stay. Only dead words will abide, in time. So we know what it must be to say: to say, we muster words then murdered, lest they lay unstill. We learn too to read dead words and reach toward those words, alive. And having reached alive, to rewrite them dead. After all in all we hope our words will sing, in order. To set our world to order, we order dead words march, and hope the order sings. That the order of our dead words will enter mouths and live, long-known and lasting, still. That the world of our words, now dead to do our bidding, will abide in wide time among living mouths. A zombie song, dead words alive.

What is known is well-known only when it lays, abiding.  “The bird is only sleeping,” we may not say. The academic bird no bird at all, no owl. Neither flying nor speaking but lasting, known. The owl that wants to speak, but finds it is not yet dusk. We want to write, to make thoughts fly, birds sing. Yet we lay upon a wire, narrow. Is this knowing, saying, speaking? Must even thirteen birds, black, to be seen, also lie, so marched, so ordered? How can the living dead sing? What dance of birds, abiding? At what place of dusk? And when?

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