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The Times...An Excerpt From A "Work In Progress"

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  • The Times...An Excerpt From A "Work In Progress"
    Posted by  
    August 04, 2011

     

    The Times…

     

    Stepping out into the square the first thing noticed is the emptiness. Odd because the square is crawling with people. It is at maximum capacity. It is full. The emptiness is not the lack of objects but the lack of substance. The lack of purpose. Odd again because the square is full of things to do. It is bustling with all forms of entertainment and engagement. It is full of purpose. The dual nature of the square leads one to cancel out attempts at identifying the true nature of the square because at once it is undefinable and also defines itself thoroughly. The purpose of the square is nothing that feels like something. The square is ornate but lacks artistic appeal. The ornate gilding and filigree is mere reproduction of some original romantic or oriental design. It mimics authenticity but by its very unnatural production it is stripped of any authentic merit. Its placement among the modern structures and fixtures screams out that it doesn't belong even though it's just as modern as they are age-wise. It betrays itself. It cancels itself out. 

    Nothing can be added to the square. Things are only taken by the square. Everything in the square costs some portion of oneself. Time is taken in the square and paid to the relentless marketing stalls, signage and campaigns. Money is taken in the square by the ceaseless vending machines of unnecessary items. Life is not taken in the square though. Life is exchanged. Your non-square life in exchange for the glamour and speed of the square's life. There is a glut of communication in the square but no talking. No conversation. Merely questions about the state of your present affairs and the opportunity to modify them for a time. The chance to become beautiful, fashionable, important, happy, desirable, entertained, perfect. In short all the things you were not before you entered the square.

    The food of the square is delicious and plentiful, if you can afford it. The price of this sustenance is high at the start of the day but the value depreciates over its course as the food rushes to its inevitable rottenness. Its own self-destructive unsuitability. However If you don't mind the taste of waste you can maintain a rather balanced diet in the square. As you see even as the food becomes waste it is forbidden to be given as well. It must be re-purposed. From valuable to valueless in the course of 24 hours. But its value never drops to point of free. Freedom must be paid for. The calculations of the square's mathematicians can be utterly cruel. The true acidic nature of the square bubbles ominously beneath its cool surface. The power to strip value at an ever increasing pace is the squares most constant attribute. 

    The square is overflowing with life. Bursting at the seams with life. It is an overload of life. So much so that once one leaves the life of the square it is hard to find a comparable intensity of life elsewhere. The life of the square kills off the life of everything outside of it but at the same time feeds off this outside life as well. The square secretes a life-giving poison. An unnatural paradox made all the more conflicting because of the squares peaceful pronouncements. But all the time the square is at war. The square is constantly at war with the world outside of it and the worlds that continually traverse within its borders. A war waged with peaceful weapons in the hands of friendly homicidal maniacs. A war of sensory imperialism. A war for resources to keep the square at war. Lo and Behold the death's head of the square!

    The square is constantly surveilled. The square although constantly courageous in its raw self-expressiveness lives under constant fear. The fear of any unauthorized self-expression by others. Watching others for anything asymmetrical, learning from them, assimilating them if they are of value or removing them if they are not. The square does not fear its destruction. It lives in fear of being forgotten. So it is ever inventive of ways to remind others of its existence. Redundantly in competition with itself to out do its previous incarnation of itself. Forever mutating and evolving. Sacrificing its own limbs and memories in hopes of staying on the minds of its transient inhabitants. "To forget to remember" is its mission statement for this process.

    The current genesis of the square is its most profound and applauded by its designers as its finest moment. The mobilization of the square. The ability of the square to exist outside of itself, implanted in the minds and hearts of all those who have ever entered its domain. A parasitic relationship between itself and us. It moves as we move and ultimately we move as it influences us to move. Our perspective is its perspective. It has become one with us. So now we are also at constant war with ourselves. We are constantly chasing a newer, better self-identity abandoning any former substantial definitions to the scrap heap of obsolescence no matter how pertinent they are to our continued survival. We apply and remove value irregardless of impact to the world at rates that Geiger counters would fail to measure with any surety. We are truly radioactive. Decaying in decadence. The square is us, full of emptiness. 

    I was at the airport in Chicago. I went to use the restroom. When I was done I went to wash my hands. When I looked up from the sink into the mirror I saw an advertisement instead of my reflection. It was one of the most honest and terrifying points of my life. We've come full circle in the square.

    Wasalu "Lupe Fiasco" Jaco

    Excerpt from a "work in progress"...

     

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Lupe Fiasco's picture
on August 04, 2011

 

The Times…

 

Stepping out into the square the first thing noticed is the emptiness. Odd because the square is crawling with people. It is at maximum capacity. It is full. The emptiness is not the lack of objects but the lack of substance. The lack of purpose. Odd again because the square is full of things to do. It is bustling with all forms of entertainment and engagement. It is full of purpose. The dual nature of the square leads one to cancel out attempts at identifying the true nature of the square because at once it is undefinable and also defines itself thoroughly. The purpose of the square is nothing that feels like something. The square is ornate but lacks artistic appeal. The ornate gilding and filigree is mere reproduction of some original romantic or oriental design. It mimics authenticity but by its very unnatural production it is stripped of any authentic merit. Its placement among the modern structures and fixtures screams out that it doesn't belong even though it's just as modern as they are age-wise. It betrays itself. It cancels itself out. 

Nothing can be added to the square. Things are only taken by the square. Everything in the square costs some portion of oneself. Time is taken in the square and paid to the relentless marketing stalls, signage and campaigns. Money is taken in the square by the ceaseless vending machines of unnecessary items. Life is not taken in the square though. Life is exchanged. Your non-square life in exchange for the glamour and speed of the square's life. There is a glut of communication in the square but no talking. No conversation. Merely questions about the state of your present affairs and the opportunity to modify them for a time. The chance to become beautiful, fashionable, important, happy, desirable, entertained, perfect. In short all the things you were not before you entered the square.

The food of the square is delicious and plentiful, if you can afford it. The price of this sustenance is high at the start of the day but the value depreciates over its course as the food rushes to its inevitable rottenness. Its own self-destructive unsuitability. However If you don't mind the taste of waste you can maintain a rather balanced diet in the square. As you see even as the food becomes waste it is forbidden to be given as well. It must be re-purposed. From valuable to valueless in the course of 24 hours. But its value never drops to point of free. Freedom must be paid for. The calculations of the square's mathematicians can be utterly cruel. The true acidic nature of the square bubbles ominously beneath its cool surface. The power to strip value at an ever increasing pace is the squares most constant attribute. 

The square is overflowing with life. Bursting at the seams with life. It is an overload of life. So much so that once one leaves the life of the square it is hard to find a comparable intensity of life elsewhere. The life of the square kills off the life of everything outside of it but at the same time feeds off this outside life as well. The square secretes a life-giving poison. An unnatural paradox made all the more conflicting because of the squares peaceful pronouncements. But all the time the square is at war. The square is constantly at war with the world outside of it and the worlds that continually traverse within its borders. A war waged with peaceful weapons in the hands of friendly homicidal maniacs. A war of sensory imperialism. A war for resources to keep the square at war. Lo and Behold the death's head of the square!

The square is constantly surveilled. The square although constantly courageous in its raw self-expressiveness lives under constant fear. The fear of any unauthorized self-expression by others. Watching others for anything asymmetrical, learning from them, assimilating them if they are of value or removing them if they are not. The square does not fear its destruction. It lives in fear of being forgotten. So it is ever inventive of ways to remind others of its existence. Redundantly in competition with itself to out do its previous incarnation of itself. Forever mutating and evolving. Sacrificing its own limbs and memories in hopes of staying on the minds of its transient inhabitants. "To forget to remember" is its mission statement for this process.

The current genesis of the square is its most profound and applauded by its designers as its finest moment. The mobilization of the square. The ability of the square to exist outside of itself, implanted in the minds and hearts of all those who have ever entered its domain. A parasitic relationship between itself and us. It moves as we move and ultimately we move as it influences us to move. Our perspective is its perspective. It has become one with us. So now we are also at constant war with ourselves. We are constantly chasing a newer, better self-identity abandoning any former substantial definitions to the scrap heap of obsolescence no matter how pertinent they are to our continued survival. We apply and remove value irregardless of impact to the world at rates that Geiger counters would fail to measure with any surety. We are truly radioactive. Decaying in decadence. The square is us, full of emptiness. 

I was at the airport in Chicago. I went to use the restroom. When I was done I went to wash my hands. When I looked up from the sink into the mirror I saw an advertisement instead of my reflection. It was one of the most honest and terrifying points of my life. We've come full circle in the square.

Wasalu "Lupe Fiasco" Jaco

Excerpt from a "work in progress"...

 

Comments

CCProfound's picture

I admire how you're able to put into words all the elements of your awareness; I have often felt the cold unease from the square... both physically and psychologically.... I'm unnerved at how something so seemingly immaterial can be so unwittingly materialized in my mind, sometimes even my heart -- It's hard being a laser.... especially since 1% make us all a part of the lie.... but they do it so well, so thorough; it's difficult to see it as untrue – but I must shine on --- LASERS
mspeelicious's picture

Beautifully written and expressed . We have become empty shells....sadly we are controlled by our environment, TV and advertising. As we constantly seek to be acceptable we have lost our identities have become empty shells....sadly we are controlled by our environment, TV and advertising. As we constantly seek to be acceptable we have lost our identities
AmoniYah's picture

I respect and admire that you could have allowed yourself to be used as a disciple of "the square" (as many in your position do) but instead you use your popularity to give light to truth. I am a big fan of your music but your writing takes it to another level. I found it to be and exercise in futility to pick which line I thought was the best description of the times at hand because one line would supersede the next. Taking it back to the beginning you wrote"Stepping out into the square" which says that no matter how vast and invasive "the square" is, there is a space void " the square". When we align ourselves with the ways of Creator we find truth,peace, and freedom. Outside the truth of the Creator there is" the square" waiting for us. Once we collectively align ourselves with G-d we will bring about the times written in the dispatch. :) Continue to stay strong and keep it righteous. Peace
Dre Kole's picture

Siiiick
Queen Mimi's picture

What i love about this dude is that he holds himself accountable too...
Blakghost's picture

At first i listened to your music like i listened to everyone else's music The more i listened to you the more i became aware i felt a change i stopped listening to you and began to hear you! I can never repay you for what you have taught me and continue to teach me in your life time but i can thank you and i do thank you!! your an inspiration to human kind beyond your wildest dreams!! Cheers Brother!!!
milwaukee rick's picture

WOW
thetruth28's picture

There is a way out of the "square" but you like most people, choose not to listen. Very poetic by the way....nice read.
YoungEndymion's picture

This was poetic in a way deeper than anything I've seen you do before Lu, I've been listening for a loooong time and this is the pinnacle thus far, your descriptions and reflections are evocative of a Shakespeare play in motion with words.Beautiful simply beautiful.
ID's picture

Thank you for the thought devoted to this parable of the square Lu. It's obvious that the organization of these concepts comes from endless mental toil and laborious effort. I think that the importance of the facts that you have highlighted here is invaluable to us all. The true nature of the culture laboratory that we live in in our small section of the world must be understood in order to aid all of America's and the world's inhabitants that struggle for survival while a small selected image of america lives in gross excess. These are the facts i designate the most importance to, and appreciate the most 1 lack of purpose- every life grows toward a sun with a burning passion and purpose, and when smany gather, it is only exponentially helpful that a common need be defined, as the history of the square, Rome's forum for example, implies. but in America, there is no conversation, only individual quest for excess and the impossible perfection that you mention in the second paragraph. The attention that is devoted to the most ridiculous things that we allow ourselves to be mesmerized by is our societies greatest downfall. a national statement of purpose is the remedy to our greatest issues, and i think decades of regression are evidence it is not going to come from our congress. congress is the square for public policy, but it has become a mascarade of commerce. 2. Freedom must be paid for- If we cannot take the time to stop and look around us, literally a week off of work (as the majority of the population beleives they cannot afford to) to deliberate on a common problem with members of our communities, how can we claim to be free? many people now hold beliefs like "we are free to work for what we want to work for"....what? shelter? more excessive clothing? the latest release of the technology monopolies? how about solidarity? if we must work to be free, we are not free at all. Thanks again Lu. I look forward to more material like this Shaun "ID" Hoekman
IHADSOMELAGEARS's picture

One of the most self observant, reflective things I've read in a minute. What I derive the most is that some are blindly allowing themselves to be sucked into this ever revolving fad of false reality. That "square" that's in constant reference also implies to me, the persistent hustle & bustle and reaching out for this fake portrayal that will chew you up and spit you out relentlessly. I feel in some small way or another the influence of the "square" has a grip on us all. For me, it's weather or not you give the YES or NO for it to clinch tighter and tighter, eventually leading to suffocation. It makes me think of the later part of the manifesto: "We want substance in the place of popularity"
artigiano's picture

Excellent interpretation and prospective of what the constant search for glamour does to the world. It enslaves. One thing though: "Irregardless" is not a word.
AfroEd's picture

lupe this is ed ur brother man. ur an inspiration. ill be back soon
Ginoske's picture

That was a great read man. I'm looking forward to see more.
Sumu's picture

The Squares in cities of the world where Revolutions used to take place have become commercialized. It is our job to take back the Square, stop the oppression and fight for our Freedom, our Rights, and our Standard of living. We all need to stop being puppets of this commercialized propaganda that gives us false hopes.

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