The Discipline of D.E. (Do Easy)

William Burroughs / Gus van Sant


a tower
of columns
stone iron steel
life-sized windows
people to wash them
washer men and women
and their oversized children
their city is home to chameleons
their city is both asylum and asylum
the city is always a zoo and a theme park
the city imagines nature as a sister virtuality
the city administers its treatment indiscriminately 
the city is both therapy and pathology for the lonely
the city cries itself to sleep with other people’s tear ducts
by checking and releasing flow, the city pumps its own heart
a city is always a whole whole, even as it expands and contracts
the whole city is like an orange, with rind and segment, ring and suburb
a city collapses like a burned-out star in cases of bad or useless circulation
a city never returns to the state of a village, but may die ignobly in a village-like way
a city is a supermarket unpacking out of similar boxes no choice between the same thing
a city is the ugly veil of second nature, which her inhabitants want to raise and lower forever
difference makes no real difference to the city, but she will lean back and watch the show
a city needs at least four large structures, and one of those is the city art museum
a city directs culture by applying pressure here and allowing parasites there
this is not the wish of those who control the city and the city knows it
the city suckles its addicts with carbon monoxide and benzene
the city swaps sublimity at dawn for self-loathing at dusk
the city vaunts itself as the true nation of the nation
a city’s madness weaves itself on park benches
the city is the unchanging pace of fast food
the city’s coffers are the glory of its few
the city gives scrounging its dignity
the city makes darkness visible
the city is its own full moon
the city only masturbates
the city is a bad child
the city is disdainful
the city eats itself
the city cackles
the city vomits
the city faints
the city lives
the city has