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David McLean DAVID MCLEAN is Welsh but has lived in Sweden since 1987. He lives there on an island in a large lake called Mälaren, very near to Stockholm, with a woman, cats, and a couple of large black and tan dogs. He has a BA in History from Balliol, Oxford, and an MA in philosophy, taken much later and much more seriously studied for, from Stockholm. Up to date details of well over a thousand poems in various zines over the last three years or so and several available books and chapbooks, including three print full lengths, a few print chapbooks, and a free electronic chapbook, are at his blog.

Recent Work By David McLean

things start

By David McLean

Poem

things start and stop too soon,
or maybe never; they are eyes
between stars, gross ghosts
and vast absences,

all the missing crystal that god said
was his best medicine, courtly
love refuting nothing. things start.
they grow up to be dead children,

such subtle lesions on innocent skin
and so very little innocence within,
just meat in so many lonely colors,
where things start and go missing

dead things living

What is the point of poems?

Poems and poets irritate me, mostly. What is important in this world is other things: animals, sex, philosophy, food, not poems. The cognitive status of poems is highly questionable, too. What sort of statements are poems making? Many poets like to think of themselves as in some way challenging the philosophical status quo, but they seem to imagine that one can do so simply by not thinking and reverting to a medieval love of Jesus, his dad, his old mum, and angels. What are these people getting at with their distaste for logic, coupled with a dubious religiosity? Are they afraid of dying? Well, boo-hoo, people die. Music is almost always better than poetry, and films are often better too. Especially zombie films.


Do you seriously prefer your dog to people?

Yes, if given a choice between saving the life of one dog or the lives of ten people I would save the dog, unless it was a small dog. Small dogs are not proper dogs.


What, if anything, do you read?

I do actually read some poetry, I like Trakl, Plath, Larkin, but I read mostly philosophy, Heidegger just now, the Nietzsche books. If I read modern poetry then it’s mostly things I’m reviewing, or on Facebook. I am going to read Husserl in Swedish later, I like to read philosophy in Swedish too.


Why do you not whine about your childhood?

I whine about other people’s childhoods instead. I don’t think mine was very important, it was OK, but no biggie.


Why do people call you a nihilist?

As Heidegger explains it, Nietzsche, by “nihilism,” is basically referring to the rejection of the idea of a true suprasensuous world as opposed to the lower world of illusion and becoming, a rejection in the style of Platonism or Xianity (which is Platonism for the retarded). I am a nihilist in that sense, in the sense of positivism. This world exists, obviously. The Buddhist form of nihilism is too stupid for words. I like this world, I like animals, beasts, nature, I like to see predators predating and puppies pissing. This world is good. I am an axiological nihilist too, in the sense that I don’t believe in the real external existence of values.


How do you write?

With a computer. I don’t believe in writer’s block, I don’t believe in inspiration either, I just write, I feel a perverse need to write a few poems a day, it takes about half an hour to write five or six. I like computers, I use Gentoo Linux on both my laptop and my desktop. Most writers seem to prefer M$ Windoze. That’s their problem, not mine. They seem to think, for some reason, that knowing fuck all about computers is the correct aesthetic stance. I don’t write with pens, I can’t read my own handwriting any more.


What is the meaning of life?

Things like sentences have meanings. Lives are not the sorts of things to which we can attribute meanings.