If there is in fact, a heaven and a hell, all we know for sure is that hell will be a viciously overcrowded version of Phoenix — a clean well lighted place full of sunshine and bromides and fast cars where almost everybody seems vaguely happy, except those who know in their hearts what is missing… And being driven slowly and quietly into the kind of terminal craziness that comes with finally understanding that the one thing you want is not there.
Hunter S. Thompson
What shall we ever do here in the secular barrenness of this waste land, all the hordes uneasy with boredom, distressed with a strange sensation of absence. A ‘dis-ness’. A lacking. An open wound. We are post-ease.
Negations are now our only tools of self-definition: what we have lost and what we have shifted beyond. What we are no longer and what no longer is. Everything is displaced and dislocated. Everywhere, in every area of knowledge and belief, we recognise complete ambiguity and uncertainty. We are disconcerted and discomposed. The ease our bodies remember from past generations, the sense of general wholeness, is undone. All we have is our recognition of the undoing.
Dis-ease is a return of the gothic, and the city is a gothic space. The urban environment is unstable and riddled with dark currents of the preternatural, the peculiar, and the inexplicable. Stick figures are paralysed in strange corners of the landscape. Unnatural forms, malignant tumours, stalk the body of the city, infusing and infecting. Eerie humours and animal sprites. The system is shot, our nerves are shattered and splintering. Threatened by the uncanny, we play dead.
In essence absurd the disembodied monitors, the bodiless benches, the wire fences imposing arbitrary structures on our environment. Connecting nothing with nothing. Absurdity defies connection, explanation and identification. An unidentified fever burns in the metal scaffolding of the city and in its occupants. Here we are in the outskirts of Dis, the furiously burning pit, the festering epicentre of this hot dis-ease. The heat is intense, a charged white heat that does not glow or sweat but is the whole sky weighing down on us, closing in on our anxiety. Here is hell as we know it, one we understand only by desire and absence.
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