“Ultimately, [Achille Mbembe] seeks to destabilize the opposition between stability and chaos […] to allow for what might issue forth from it, what it might produce, rather than seek the antidote that would suppress it.” -Jasbir Puar in the preface to Terrorist Assemblages
Reading Puar, I’m curious about what grows where, which roots in what soil lifting what leaves and blossoms and fruit. Even more, I’m interested in the soil where I tend to think nothing grows, or at least nothing “worthwhile.”
“Nothing good happens after 2 am,” a friend told me back in college.
“I don’t have good ideas while watching Netflix,” another friend told me.
“I need to stop being lazy,” I tell myself a lot.
Of course, lots of things do happen after two am (I remember some lovely long conversations beneath the stars). A lot happens when I watch Netflix: sometimes it’s thinking and sometimes it’s an attempt at not-thinking, an attempt to “turn off my brain,” and all of that is fascinating. A few weeks ago my partner and I stretched out in the grass, feeling the warmth of almost-spring, and there’s plenty of lovely things that grow in exactly the space I call my “lazy.”
When I stop trying to end it or ameliorate it, and start listening to it, attending to it, what comes from “chaos”? Or to put it another way, where are my weeds, my shoots and stems that somehow keep sprouting up, and what happens if I care for them?