Vi Khi Nao reviews ARGOT OF INSCRIPTION
by v manuscript
Vi Khi Nao (of Per Second Press) wrote an incredibly accurate and flattering review of ARGOT OF INSCRIPTION [posted below]
You can see Vi’s own writing at Per Second Press
Review of V Manuscript’s Argot of Inscription: The Madness of the Canary II. Second House
(limited edition of 200) This book arrives to me in the semi-bleeding heat of desert Nevada on a Wednesday evening. It has flown through the invisible, atmospheric spine of the Sky. It’s a Providence product, bloodily published by VILE_TYPE + NEGATIVE PRESS. My edition is #85.
What I find most remarkable about this book is its statuary language. You expect language to be linear, to make sense on a predictable, rational level. However, this thing of beauty, the fifth dimension beauty, a linguistic sculpture, is filled with bright maxims and wisdom, scaling and descaling our subconscious with human-machine hybrid substances, some invented in the moment to exercise the breadth of our linguistic, automated potential. We should be confused throughout the reading as to whether V Manuscript’s manuscript has been written by a machine or a human or a combo of the two. We expect language to make sense as a rational, traditional structure, on a level we can pinpoint and feel safe. A haven where we won’t be molested or pornographed by the possibility of linguistic re-sequencing and sequencing. Reading this informal novella, one feels that V Manuscript flirts with all the possible dimensions of our hidden, semantic vortexes. And, of course, when the cosmic voice speaks, with an asterisk by it, “*I want your freedom all to myself,” (p.7), you think this sentence makes sense because of its ontological simplicity, concealing the irony within itself for itself while still providing persecuted, oppressed pleasure to an ubiquitous audience who reads. But perhaps it’s the lips of a machine-made substance that produces vocal cords from a place where language should and could exist. Once in a while, the omnipresent narrator reminds the ubiquitous world it has created to do the following task – “Breathe pussy.” As if it hasn’t been breathing on page 21. Or when, without a doubt, when a particular, demi-protagonist titled ‘menstruation’s groveling meows’ exclaims, ‘mother suffered,’ we sense that a protagonist could be a vowel or a sound or a series of sounds. Once in a while, in the midst of all of this, the narrator assaults our human sublimity with wise sayings from the void, “Never copy a mirror,” (p. 33) or “You can always learn more, yet time is expensive,” (p. 20) or “What is poetry but a dance of planned insults to nature?” (p. 15). And we believe this kind of wisdom because it tailors to our practical tasks and lives. After all, we breathe and we should eat and fuck. Whether we are a machine or not (this is beside the point), prudence is still important! I mean, if Shakespeare, the creator of massive literary prudence, had lived in the postmodern, information age, he would write like V Manuscript, who writes through the eyes of three sisters, “Daughter, drink this broth of most virtuous prudence” (p. 48), and enjoys inventing delectable strings of sentences or word combos that make our libidos meow here and there for feline-like pain inside of pleasure. For instance, page 46: “lugubrious lucubration”; page 48: “malformed conical tongues”; page 30: “albescent library”; page 48: “And she tarried these harmonic, hedonic with lilac and poppycock, and the harlots were anointed with hyssop on the hillock”; and page 28: “The presses masturbate downstairs with admirable stroking–off determinism.” And all of these playful, euphoric, sonic, ontologically-based tongue-twisting sentences with bouncy, obviously, self-aware semenic and menstruating mechanical sentences have guided the readers back to the opening where Ms. Lovelace, Esq (I did not secure the pronouns) addresses the letter XXVII to Helen, “—As you can see, I have undertaken the scanning of your journals and have attempted/chanced/ to produce a readable manuscript. Everyone is worthy of love, but not necessarily yours.” Of course, “everyone overlubricated” – meaning love: the lover of text, the writer of text, the machine that is capable of all of his un-human qualities. And that letter is an attempt at narrator annihilation by heightening its metafictional stature which is sprawled out and scattered throughout the text. Obviously, metafiction and the arrow of the written self point back to itself, while the “poet is mute, nocturnal” (p. 41), and remains that way inside and outside of the manuscript. But memory inside of the manuscript sustains us. Even through Joe Brainard’s series of “I remember.” What V Manuscript has created here is a holistic shifting plate of semantic structures, reconstructing the jawline of the readers and reinventing the reading eyescan of the sight in hopes to elevate the audience’s reading experience to a sublime place where meaning transcends our desire to understand language or words in a sentence-by-sentence based frame of mind, but to a place of high noetic atmosphere, low grounds of libidinal inutility, and as a result, we do expect literature with sophisticated contraptions like V Manuscript’s Argot of Inscription: The Madness of the Canary II. Second House to behave more like a ‘wandering womb’ and also a place where the readers can masturbate with literary machines and find their transcendence. Off-handedly