Dictatorship of joy

El Lissitzky, Epic. Literaturnyi sbornik, nos. 1-4 - 1922-1923
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By CAMILA GÓES*

two poems

100 thousand

In the dictatorship of joy, smiles are frozen and everyone has a good time” thanks to God”
Here there is no possibility of suffering, nor of contesting
On this Earth, flat as paper, when there is a sinister figure of 100 dead
the cars honk the championship won
Suffering is absolutely forbidden!
The houses are set up to repel it, protected with the most modern technology.
Suffering “has color” and walks barefoot and lives far away
You can't talk about poverty either, it's a grammatical rule!
The language, on the other hand, is miserable
We lack so many words...
100 thousand lives “gone”, it is impossible to enunciate death
Expressing pain is like speaking a strange language,
And piled up like anguish, sometimes it overflows in the red of the eyes
A color that blooms in a “clean” setting
So, an indigent language is spoken
Here too, conflict is sin, and difference is shame.
The conversations, very well rehearsed, never deviate from the norms
Without tension, it is not necessary to think…. Ufa!
The other simply does not exist, except perhaps as a child
To whom we heed orders, with deep relief
And everything is always a matter of education, “a big misunderstanding”
If there is no other, there is no speech, there is no listening...
The tongue contorts itself in euphemisms to account for what it does not know, does not want and cannot tolerate saying.
There is no death, there is no pain, there is no strife
… the “noise”
One understatement among many on this Earth
where it is hot, but we shiver with cold

 

200 thousand

The part of me that wants to die is jealous
Yes, because there's always a part that wants death in all of us.
And at that moment, it is she who celebrates and seems to be satiated
Satisfied, since it is greedy for death, and death has a lot of
This is the part that is not embarrassed and does not see the news,
but who is well versed on the news…
Ideology reigns triumphant, reversing all terms
It feeds that desperate part of us in abundance,
who despises reality when it seems truly unbearable
And this is not even the most despicable part of us, human after all.
There's still that other one, more specific: green yellow white blue indigo
but mostly white
Who enjoys showing that he can and that he pays for it!
Freedom here has its particularities: it is inherited, but it is also bought
We won't get vaccinated, we are so used to the disease, but always fickle: don't deprive us of the right to pay for it!
What matters is to secure the place of speech, the one who speaks to you in the first and second degree, the plantation owner and his militia grandson
To reign supreme over the weak minds and hearts of our people
Paradisiacal scenarios alternate between pages and pages of obituary
That reach us through networks, mail, nightmares and terrible phone calls
In a truly grotesque spectacle where masks are suspended,
A silent war takes place between those who ban the word death and the death that insists on surrounding
But the smell of sulfur is no longer felt, infected seem to be all
By the virus that releases the seven angels and the seven trumpets, but obstructs our nostrils.

*Camila Goes holds a PhD in political science from Unicamp. Author of Is there a subaltern political thought? (Avenue).

 

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