i decide
to take
a walk in the rain
on this scorching hot
august day.
with headphones on
and smart phone
in hand, i set off
from worker’s hill
in newark’s central ward,
the anti-puritan, anti-colonial,
anti-slavery, and anti-capitalist
liberatory space
of my all too imprisoned imagination.

i listen
to beethoven’s “emperor”,
my recent musical obsession,
while walking toward the old
lenape pathway to the river called passaic.
this road, after expropriation, got named market street
by the capitalistic dispossessors of land,
and i still (un)consciously wonder
if there’s an anti-emperor,
an anti-empire
which beethoven wove
into their song’s fabric somewhere.

has to be
in there. how
couldn’t there
be an anti-imperial
logic to the song?
all cultural workers
across color, shape, and ability
know their oppressors
take the fruits
of their labor, the surplus labor creates,
alienating them
from the goods and profits they make,
all for Their Owners and Bosses own privileged delights.
beethoven couldn’t be disabled
from seeing the ruthlessness
of the emperor
over them, could they?
and, anyway, a song as joyous
as the “emperor”, if that’s joy in the notes
of the first part i hear, such a tune must know inside
itself the joy of guillotining the emperor’s
head from their body when and where
the fruitful means of production become ripe for the picking.]

i listen more closely,
to catch beethoven’s time,
and i begin walking wildly
at the intersection
of involuntary, unconscious
sensations, in my living existence,
and of voluntary, conscious
responses to the coercive reality in
and around me, all aligning in the anti-
oppressive class struggle between me
and my auditory hallucinations, the voices
not mine and only in me for the last six years.
this intensifies while i am standing at the intersection
of martin luther king jr. boulevard and west market street,
all seeming to become symmetrical to the instrumental beats
within beethoven’s (anti-)emperor track.
the light’s red,
readying to turn
green. i imagine how i am marching
in a liberatory marxist brigade
who’s fighting the fascist and capitalist classes,
all their institutions and tools of managerial
oppression, with all the organizations and tools
of socialism’s caring sciences and left revolutionary
liberation politics.

i head east
down market
street, still vexed
at a recent experience
of direct neuro-political authoritarianism
i experienced at university hospital
and a relative act of structural uncaringess
by the new jersey department of labor’s
disability division’s disapproval of my social
security applications. simple jobs
is substantial work, i yell aloud. simple
jobs is substantial
work, They say back. what in the world
do They need to understand about auditory
hallucinations to know such are a permanent
mental disorder!? six years, for goodness sakes,
i yell again, louder than before. six years!

a male-bodied black
worker looks over while towing a car
parked next to essex county college.
they look at me
like the weirdo i am,
perhaps in context
of the weirdness we all are.

i respond loudly,
headphones pumping
beethoven through the broken streets
within me.
just getting
some physical and mental exercise
in! i speak with the loud voice
of a headphoned mad walker. enjoy the day!
and the light turns green. my walk continues
with a jump-skip maneuver directing me
toward newark penn station.

an anti-master, solidarity
voice speaks up inside my head.
[They aren’t taking care
to understand
your voice-hearing problem,
the auditory hallucinations
making permanently ill
your neuro-cognitive functions.
They only want to know
what muscles are still connected
to functioning nerves
so a capitalist employer
can oppress you
for what They believe
they need in this world: cheap labor
for profits or meeting revenue requirements.
really. it’s not you. it’s Them.]

i keep walking
and i pass the lincoln
statue near the old courthouse,
the voices
still talking to me
and even to their own selves

reflect more, another voice says,
this one being harder to identify at first.
on those substantial work
and what They
are leaving

of course, voice,
i say, knowing
damn well
the voice does
lots if not all
of the reflective work
i need to do
in secure inner bodily space,
none of which i even possess
anymore, possessed as i am
by Their ruling class bio-tech device
and Its mechanisms of domination
which spinoza identified
in the seventeenth century

[where’s the loss
of care
located here?]

that was a liberatory solidarity voice
asking there, who signals their self here
by raising a question within my working class
anti-harm marxist framework, against, that is,
the master’s voices and their constant anti-caring,
harm practices empowering larger oppressions
in cultural practice and social system forms.

They don’t care
about how
so-called substantial work
to medically
symptom severity,
or so it seems,
meaning how
and why
the ways
of workplace life
symptom experiences,
especially in restrictive,
dominating, boss over you
settings, and how such intensifications
affect—meaning emotionally and motivationally—
and effect—meaning socially and culturally—
co-workers, consumers, managers,
and general publics
where workplaces are.
They don’t appear to care
about how
make simple
labor tasks
much harder
and longer to do,
{yes! sing my mad child!}
even in the lifemaking
work tasks
at home,
in the kitchen
doing dishes
and making food,
in laundry
and bedroom spaces
cleaning and folding clothes,
in the living room
organizing texts and writing materials,
and those
all over the place, always so all over
the place. i am always all over the place
struggling to organize
the mass of paperwork
unemployed workers with disabilities
across identity lines
acquire from various institutions
who more or less
try helping us
get our basic living needs met
to continue socially recreating life
on earth.

{reflect more!}
a master’s voice
says loudly.
{and recall
who allows you
to live under the system
don’t appear
to appreciate
for all It has
advantaged you with
from your dominant birth

don’t They have
to account
{no! not in that direction!}
for the structure/base-symptom/illness
dialectic, the ways the Society and Economy
are (in)separable
from mad embodied experiences
and our different ways of being? {because the state
is madder than you, right!? They never practice any types of accountability
within the higher decision-making ranks of the State,
at least none you want or care to recognize, right, weirdlove?}

must be so.
must be so.
must be so.
i repeat
to myself
hoping to throw
off the voices
not mine,
once and for all
after six years
of this dreadful,
terrorizing experience
of traumatized matters
directly killing hopes
and dreams inside me
because the voices
never seem to quiet
Themselves, if only
they do in short bursts.

what to do?
how to cope?
how to prevent
premature death
resulting from where
and when i am at
in this world?
conscience! yes!
conscience formation! yes!
conscientization, like paulo
freire teaches! yes!
that’s always it!

{walk it off, wildly,}
a mad voice
faintly says, audibly so,
possibly unhappy with my first
thoughts here. {but We are the producers
of the thought you hear. never forget
that!} {walk it off,
rhythmically,} another mad
voice suggests, whispering.
{do the dialectical dancing
and musical conducting
thing you seem to like to do
in the streets of newark.
the people
will love it!}

then, another voice
speaks up,
[make It all explicit. yes!
the whole system. yes!
and Its mad cultures. yes!
those cultures operate like glue,
sticking us
to Their institutions
and adhering Their institutions
whether you like It
or not.] {rebel!} a master’s voice
says in Their grizzly sounding baritone.
{do so so Our armed agents can kill you!
suicide by cop is what you yearn for!}

no! i yell
back. never will They get me again!
i’m not the example They need.
that can only come
from within their police ranks,
really from the highest ranking cops
there is. but systematic corruption
within capitalist society is so thorough
the example we need can be almost anyone,
but especially those with direct power over
other living beings called human across lines of difference.

walk It off, walk It off,
vexly, madly, ever so madly,
knowing, of course,
i am not karl marx’s
younger self. i know
this. everybody knows


east on market street
toward the train station,
the involuntary
of my living body
by symptoms
trying to make my being
into who e.e. cummings called everybody else,
i resort to another right-
expressive practice
against repressing what harms
me: conducting with a two-two time
signature to takeback my body movement
from the voices not mine.

i conduct with
my musical hands,
left hand always
being the main hand.
and i rhythm step
with my musical feet
to beethoven’s (anti-)masterpiece.

these are
discrete coping
for surviving
the relative
of my severe psychiatric
symptoms. {not the severest
in the world, tho.} i know this.
but severe enough
to destroy my everyday life
with terrible-to-horrific
consistency. [yet so few
seem to understand or even
want to empathize to know.]

near mulberry
and market streets,
a master’s voice
speaks, then an anti-
master’s voice.

{you are
playing into It
and the wreckage
of the neuro-matter
we have
destroyed. you are nothing
but hidden rubble under a light,
brown hairy skin color. listen closely
to how
the liberal
commands you
so: self-control
and adjust
to other
relevant work
else die
of starvation
or those ideations
telling you
kill yourself,
kill your partner,
and all those
who’ve wronged you.}

is formed,] my anti-master’s
voice reminds me. [you are
anti-harm in your conscientizing self
who can identify oppression
and privilege to act responsibly
toward abolishing both.
They, the ruling master class, did make you
a dominating monster,
the involuntarily coerced
son of Empire
and their game
of organized violence
called north american
but you
overcame the game,
found yourself
anew, made a new radical life,
and you’re knowing, really understanding,
how your recovery journeying
one step at a time
no matter how silly
or out of rhythm
those steps
may look.
just don’t scare
the people
with all your social
coping practices, no matter
how funny
may say
you look.]

the time
i made it
under penn station’s overpass
and into the ironbound,
a reflection
finds its way
to my brain’s mad neural
matter, one sent to me
by the voices
a mad opera
of (dis)connected
words becoming ideas
from past and present
bio-physical witness
looking out from my body
and transforming into the existential
and the material dancing
in dialectic
with the queer materiality
that is the entire
living (animal) human world,
while all this happens,
a reflection begins singing
provocation, as always:
slowly rising into the air,
the systematic
anti-bitch slap
is, as meaning,
the practice
of culturally respecting
the separation
of the fingers
and the coordinated
group-based self-defensive
anti-violent actions upward
aiming to transform
the whole dominating Thing
immiseratingly haunting
the workers
the most
by Their top-down
exploitations, repression,
and other types of violence.

a new artist
plays from
my head-
it’s andrew wk
and i catch them
singing, you better
get ready
to die,
and my left eye
while a mad voice
affirms andrew’s rightness.

{[well, you are a being
toward death
like us all. better to ready
than never.
you remember
how your traumatized
(whitened) italian-americanized
peasant grandmother couldn’t accept
the death
of their husband
when they died
several years back.
never let that
be you.]}

your death,]}
an anti-master voice says
within the space
ruled by the master’s voices,
{[we must
the masks!
we must
smash the masks!
i mean,
not those masks,
the good masks
fighting the covid
mass death pandemic.
obviously, i mean
the bad masks
making us
Them, multiply so,
and their Thing,
their dominating power
system, over us all
and influencing
like paranoid
robots, Their radio
built right into us
now. only They take
from us all
without us even knowing it.]}

yeah. next!}]
says the master’s voice
fighting from above
within the anti-master’s voice
space below.
[{and that paranoid
delusional conspiracy
is, let me guess,
It’s name is judith
and they
told you
it is all
a perfect
right? pop culture
texts cannot help you
solve psychocultural
and socioeconomic problems.
you must know this!
neither can your
dialectics, the ones
the marxists
of differences
talk about.}]

not really
but really, yeah,
these are ways auditory
hallucinations operate
inside me, skin-in, against
my consent. nothing a will
to achieve a goal can simply
overcome all by my lonesome.
or so my mad
logic goes, and then
so goes
the humorous voice, too:
b, they read,
actually saying
the existential fonz
materially wants
the whole world
becoming happy
in days and nights
(un)finally our own—

got It

{nobody’s got It
yet, except us.
this is where
Our curriculums
in plain and hidden sight
are always too much
to overcome. give up
and let bougie class gravedigging
supervisors order the proley diggers
to bury you alive!}


this relentlessly
noisy human interior,
with the east ward
partly walked
in a mostly southern direction,
i make my way slightly west,
toward the downtown
so i can yell
and other
thoughts and feels
at The Rock—

dwayne johnson
ever do
to you?

you idiot!
the prudential
center. and tell them
how yelling
at the capitalist
makes the body
feel better
and how it distracts
from the organizing
to change the world.
go get’um, weirdlove!}

more than
a few liberationist yells
at the arena,
i find myself
turning left
off edison place
street. i walk
in march step
for a few blocks,
stopping to take
a photo when
and where
the uneven landscape
speaks to me, telling me
listen close, cause this
shit is deeper
than the abyss
we are all in.

i make it
onto the block
bordering city
hall, where a shirtless
fellow, sweaty
from the hot
rainy august day,
approaches me
during this wild,
mad walk
seemingly of
and not of my making.

is my intelligence,
the living being
with dark skin color
in a body
still called male
by the dominated.
they point
to their head
while saying
passionately aloud.
then they add
with equal passion,
don’t steal

i won’t,
i respond
after not
what to say.
and if i
your thought
and repeat
i will
cite you
by name.

we both
fast, tho,
so i didn’t get
a chance
to ask
what name
i ought
(w)rite here.

i sit
a block later
in the concrete
dining area
out front of the peter
rodino federal building
to catch my breath
and jot down some notes.
was the most
intense walk
of my life,
an audible
and inaudible
not mine
got me
and feeling
about. i catch
Their words
and write them down too—

and challenge
another says
from within me,
a reminder
to practice
my cognitive
behavioral technique
to know
what’s real
and what’s not,
itself bound, in motion,
with my dialectical
behavioral technique
called grounding.
all, taken together and synthesized,
these therapeutic practices
appear to become
literary-reportage practices—
the literary being
the whole world
around us and inside us, with
the reportage being
what we can express
inside us and aloud to others
in the various ways we communicate—
or how these witness and expression techniques
are exactly what composes
an entire genre of poetry, that is, found poetry,
to operate,
as it does
to this non-trained poet,
when and where
we catch words,
images, and sensations
in real space
and time
in the unevenly built world
for representing them
in spoken and written
at least, this is, in one form
of found poetry, the most materialist
of all types of poetry, i ought add.

totally, tho,
never really total,
hard as capturing totality
is, whether for an individual’s selfworld
or the total world shaping all lifeworlds.


i turn
right off court street
onto washington street
and I realize
i need
to check
what i have
caught more
toward making
the transformational
complete, the method
marx practiced
from the adult
to the elder
of the lifecycle.
but yeah,
that might
i say to myself,
voices on both sides
still looking in,
intervening as They
and they will to do
when and where
seeming total power
over and above
one fellow

well, well.
by this point
from the rain
are wildly walking
and it is
of your
don’t you
all that
with your
sensory system?
full sensory
to the unequal world
and It’s oppressive results
hasn’t got you
feeling nothing
or experiencing no emotion,
does it, like how It made Us?
and, anyway,
your body
not be walking
with the hallucinatory,
delusional, and other disabling
you have?

my body, too?


the social
body, like the whole

them bodies

no, no,
your living
out racism
from your pores,
especially the more
become poor.

when and where
the poor
get inculcated,
get duped,
get conditioned
into the ruling ideology
of the age, as marx notes
in eighteen forties europe.

let me
that robin—

—and batman?

—diangelo, nitwit!
that robin diangelo
really is
at picking
really bad
natural metaphors
for an unnatural,
invented capitalistic
of animal
human bodily control.

but the word
play works
so good:
pouring rain
falls upon the poor
whites who absorb
the racist ideas
within the racist rain
like they absorb
capitalist ideas
too. who doesn’t
love that?

its human invented
constructivity, is like a house
getting erected by the labor
of the workers
who, oppressed in and to produce, build the house
based on the architect class’ blueprints.
reading race and racism in modern class society
this way
makes the rain-pores,
pouring-poors absorption
weirdlectic of the racist hate
more a negative problem
of bad word-choices
than anything else,
and still, i think, such weirdness
comes from a good intentioned place.

worker-bee, clown fish,
and sheep, it is
it is
(un)justly ending.
and those unjust endings
make possible
new just beginnings
toward the world
we want, not the world
They made us make to dominate
for Their own bougie class’
profits, privilege, and power
over us-proleys-of-differences.]

the wild walk
turns onto wickliff street
and the voices
at the core
of my psy
begin bringing this
mad exercise
to an end
under the tree
nearest my central ward home
where black working class
before the med school idea
came along in the late nineteen sixties,
itself an immediate cause,
among other structural causes,
of the newark rebellion
in july nineteen sixty-seven.

the rain
seemed to break,
at least for the moment,
so i laid
in the wet green grass
looking up
at the leaves
and branches,
with the blue
of the sky,
now the background
of my poeting
this world
from inside-outward
to the cruel capitalist world
which shaped me from conception.
a breeze
down low,
cooling my drenched
body some more, and the hot
air rises up above
seemingly so
and it no longer
circulates invisibly
all round me.

[keep it
the anti-master’s
voice says.
[and keep trying
to know
the master’s
to never
the victim
who needs
to be(come)
a survivor
all over

never believe
this wild walk
of talking back
to the voices
not yours
in urban public space
ever happened. but they,
my comrades, always will,
at least, that is in the truest
real lines
of the poem here.
that is
what lefty comrades
across difference lines
does really well.

i return
to beethoven’s “emperor”,
this time to the track’s slow middle section,
where the emperor may die a slow death
only then to be celebrated in the song’s third part.
the rain starts pouring again, making newark’s
class struggles against white supremacy, cisheteropatriarchy,
ableism, and sanism seem to disappear for the moment.
laying in the grass, looking up, i think how They will never
disappear slowly on Their own, only by shared activities
across class and cultural lines. or so lenin has it. this goes,
not contradictorily, for the systematic inequalities the city suffers
under, like economic poverty and premature death, and the permanent
auditory hallucinations i immiseratingly experience,
six years now, and yet so little time left till the fall of It all.
we’ll pick of what’s left, else we take it before They’re through with us.