The First Manifesto or the Survey of the Eye

Our thought is an Eye ~ Mary Ann Caws

The Surreal is afflicted with dialogue

To open any survey of an art movement with the possibility of arrival at a point of convergence requires an association between dialogue and voice

If we consider the Surreal as dialogue with other encounters by way of dreams, coincidences, the uncanny reciprocal exchange connecting conscious and unconscious thought

Our concern will then be what endures

Such as poetics of the uncanny;

this focuses on freeing exchange of the mad & the mute from any obligation of politeness

Poetics is a choice made on instinctive personal grounds, it is the opposite of the expected, it is the spontaneous gaze, a criterion on the notion of the marvelous

Poetics strips the heart of the rose, it alters the way we read a sonata or how we perceive the sheer poetry of a naked buxom woman bathing in the sand

dialogue is lyric behaviour

Openness to whatever might happen is the first component of lyric behaviour

others include : contradictory states of dream, devastating boredom, the cursed bread at the margin of mystery

To arrive at dialogue our survey must be free of devastating boredom its (p)oetry must catapult us towards the seductiveness of flames

We must a play a game based on folded papers

Nothing is radical: everything is dictated by the language of the cursed bread at the margin of mystery

Let it be well understood, especially in a game of chess with the unconscious;

Poetics is monologue, a game played with drawings: a head, a neck, a torso, legs- the feet, submerged, in the insane haze of mind

The survey diverges in our eye

dialogue is continuity of thought (in our eye)


Umar Abubakar Sidi is the author of the poetry collection, The Poet of Dust (Konya Shamsrumi). His work has appeared in Brittle Paper, Jalada and elsewhere. He lives in Lagos, Nigeria.

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