“Set this silence free
To wash away the
Worst of me.”
In my Remains:… [off] Living Things. Linkin Park
To wash away silence is a theme of our times.
Some of you reading this may have come from my new site on Facebook
On this Facebook site for Nicholas Jakari you find examples promoted on Amazon of what I have decided to call: “Race free” writing.
As we get to know each other I may, on request, choose to explain all the motivations… they are set out over many years in many blogs; and observations on trends, in our fast changing world that nonetheless stays the same no matter what.
So here we shall deal with what, in the country where I live, is a serious threat to the long-term growth and prosperity of the region… Racial Antagonism… Ironic; given that the point of liberation was to defuse it… Albeit, understandably, slowly.
I am a poet first and foremost. Nicholas Jakari’s page is devoted to his work, and what it has to do with you. I have promoted many things in a long lifetime of working at staying alive. There are only a few poets who have ever become profitable I am told… I should like to be another. So I am presenting a different form of poetry to that in which, I was trained from the age of four.
In the interests of full disclosure: At age fifteen I started carrying a notebook and taking notes on thoughts things n whatever was an object/subject of curiosity in ‘the moment’.
You can understand that, living, as we did, in a vicious and deeply abusive police State, a poet making random observations about his surroundings and internal responses to them, in little notebooks tucked into a back pocket… soon lost whatever friends were around. And it saw me: ‘detained’, occasionally. I was “Notebook NiK” ; and when I appeared, people scattered: that dreadful evil man who “Kolekted” their words and occasional sayings was around… go now, scurry rush hide and hush.
This means that I have been routinely advised that my greatest weakness to be overcome, is difficulty networking with other humans… Strength on the other hand is networking with words.
So I am doing something I find difficult: inviting rejection by inviting you to be my friend on this journey I am taking… on an infinitely winding road… to a place where universal basic income has become the way most people earn their living via ‘rental’ levies on DATA following the acceptance that a byte of DATA should have a nominal value related to either a Firmian cent [aka the united states of Firmia… a place run by Firms] or an ounce of gold: whichever ruled at the time… And all currencies had become crypto, managed through inviolate blockchains.
Further disclosure … I did say full didn’t i?
Twenty four years ago this September the eleventh, [my September 11: before yours] I was presented abruptly with the need to widen my range as a writer.
I was going to be in a wheelchair within fifteen years, I was told. “A bullet in your spine will change your life.” They said. Via daily practice of Taiji Chuan, that has so far been avoided.
My personal style arose when I asked myself the question how do I, a person who is deeply traumatized and with life shattered; through a random act of irrational violence: that left three [ultimately] dead and me full of holes. How do I write a violent story, involving literally copious brutal murders; a story set in a place rooted in racial antagonism, without inflaming an inherent time bomb waiting for a lit fuse: because the story had the potential and I have the skill to do that.
That was though, not something I wanted, certainly few people I knew, wanted the reality of that horror.
So I decided as a poet that I would remove all reference to or even symbols associated with two specific words [the one that describes the colour of these words, and the one that describes the background colour] and write the story without ever identifying the race of any of the characters almost none of whom are in any real way: “Nice Guys”. In other words I chose as a poet to write in archetypes rather than stereotypes.
So I took, firstly, JM Coetzee’s “Barbarians….” as a model; linked it to Mandela’s [alleged] position [a la 1994]; when he spoke of a “place beyond race”.
Then I dekonstrukted… what I had; and then rekonstrukted and rekonstrukted again … the outcome.
I asked questions about my reader, in a technologically fast evolving world and had a surprising answer. An answer that in one case completely changed my understanding of everything I read.
Then i wrote and published the first post-liberation South Afrikan [then] Mzansian [now] ‘Skiet skop n verspoeg’ [my local phrase for what was once called “blood n guts”], race free, allegoric prose poetic novel: “The Buffalo Hunters”.
I rudely self-published the Buffalo Hunters two years after the Revolution in our country; in celebration of a brief [maybe] period of liberty. [I certainly would never have been allowed to publish the story before liberation]. And there are many who are enraged, I am led to believe, that I wrote it at all… without any form of standard, centuries old, racial bias… based on the silence that is now to be released.
My hypothesis is that there is good and bad in varying amounts in every human [pretty well]. What happens when a whole lot of different variations of ‘bads’, somehow, inadvertently, cross paths with each other at critical moments: that end in violence: bad goods and good bads coalesce?
At the start I had to ask the crucial question.
Could I use the methods of poetry to model a violent, sexually graphic story [we were at the time in an immediate post-revolution period] in which I make it as nearly impossible as I can make it, to identify the ethnicity of a player; and still have a definitive character that could engage you my reader… whom I do not know.
They would all simply be metaphors for people engaged in a series of violent things. Metaphors, or even archetypes’; with which you, my reader could bond freely; and engage as an extended ‘you’: should you wish to enter my imaginary world.
Could I in other words go to “a place beyond race”… and focus exclusively on the horror it has so brutally represented; rather that write something that facilitates the rage that we repress. Rather show that antipathy, like love: is not the exclusive domain of some among many?
And then if I could do that then would I have set up a new fashion… AND therein lies the silence.
So take a chance, get the eBook and tell me if I was wrong. Tell me whether a story that I described as the most violent sexually graphic tale ever published legally in my country is worth a few bob. [In reality this eBook is cheaper today than the the copies off the print run I did 22 years ago.] or: is even worth all the inconvenience of writing like that.
Read them and tell me if I’m right or wrong.
The Buffalo Hunters, is a violent sexually graphic crime story about what happens when a gang of Buffalo Hunters [a euphemism for vehicle hijackers … a fashionable activity almost invented in my neighborhood.] have to go on the run themselves, when they accidentally Jackroll the daughter of a local warlord.
Should you be a fan of violent, sexually graphic stories that, curiously, many readers have also found to be bizarrely funny… this will be the read of the year.
On the other hand should you be someone who desires simpler pleasures… like: Getting you own way in things, then: 7 Ways… is made for you… and is inherently non-violent… It has been found by many readers over the past eleven years to be most useful at achieving that purpose… getting your own way in things: as well as getting the money that is righteously yours: should that be your requiirement.
Enjoy until next time.
And don’t forget to let me know what you declare the verdict to be…
Let us jointly break the silence.