Ralph Dumain rdumain at
Mon Sep 4 22:49:55 MDT 1995

I was quite touched by the reaction of Louis and Steve to my Labor
Day post, and I must say I value such moral support all the more
given the melancholy mood that I have been in.  I am somewhat
embarrassed also, because this was hardly a serious literary
effort on my part.  You should see what I can write when I
actually make an effort.  Perhaps I have a responsibility to
unveil all sides of my personality besides the nasty and sarcastic
ones that come so easily given the constant frustration in which I
live.  Ten years of living in Washington has raised my viciousness
to a fine art.  If only I could remember all the provocations.
First it was the smartass yuppies and right-wing shits in the news
media, then it was my ruthless landlord, then it was the 1988 peak
in the murder rate during which someone was gunned down outside my
window and a helpless old man on crutches in my building was
stabbed to death, not to mention the election of George Bush; then
there was the struggle with the Uncle Tomism which pervades all
races, sexes, and sexual orientations and is bound up in a strange
symbiosis with the ruthless rich who exploit their no-self-esteem
lackeys; then there was the hypocritical, exploitative black petty
bourgeoisie with their religious hokum, then the corrupt Marion
Barry city bureaucracy, rude and nasty black youth on the streets
..... let's see, where am I -- up to about 1991?  OK, I'll stop
here, before I get into the Gulf War and the shameful victory
celebration that followed.  That means I have to leave out
self-serving politicians, the DC public schools, sleazy lawyers
and their crooked practices, slipshod court procedures and the
suborning of perjury, stupid homophobic judges, and other
delights.  Don't get me started.

Anyway, this reminds me of a poem by William Blake from his 1793
notebooks, in which he describes a religious revelation he has
while taking a shit in the woods.  He embarrasses all the gods of
heaven and earth while turning his butt around three times making
fun of them all.  He concludes: "If Blake could do this when he
rose up from shite, what might he not do if he sat down to

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