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SREČKO KOSOVEL (1904-1926)

Translated from Slovenian by LESLEY ZORE

To the mechanics! (A manifesto)

(Mechanics and drivers!)

I. Machinery cannot die, for it has no soul. A paradox is not of understanding to an operator, as it stretches beyond the boundaries of the machine-world. The transition of the mechanism into life is itself but a paradox. The paradox is alive as electricity is, but electricity is not mechanical. Thus, we must not be mechanical but electrical.

II. A connection of electrically charged wires produces a spark. So does the connection between two fresh sources. That is an electric flame. As a cause for shortcuts and burnings of whole machines, it presents a danger to the engineer. A shortcut can inflame any machine. We arrive to break the mechanisms. Human-machine will be demolished. Chanting: Human-machine is to end!

III. Lightning rods are no use. The bolt needs to shake the soul. Let it be struck, let it burn! We must demolish all circuits. We have thus declared a state of war in our struggle against the machines! This is the first declaration of war in the State of SHS (executors rest in Slovenia). War against all the machines!

IV. It's dawning! Do y'all feel this dazzle? No peoples remain and no nations and no humanity. One singlet stands in the center of the globe, one lone human, crowned with a wreath of white thorns. Above them stands the silver glory of humanity. (Was it storms and death alone?) One person is; and all who stand around him are only variations of his face. (Was this human a miner or an engineer or a bearer or a bauer or an administrator or a writer or an intellectual or a vagrant - I cannot say. Were they a Slovenian or a German or a Russian or were they French, I do not know; I only know one thing - I love them, I have warm love for them, whoever they are, whatever they are.) I do not know this person - they are themselves - I am satisfied with one: I love them!

V. A new humanity awakens. What if it comes from the lowlands? It has been dishonoured! What if it comes from the depths? Desecrated. What if it brings tempests and thunder? It has been degraded!

As long as… As long as it comes, let it come! So what, if it crosses fields of corpses? It carries the weight of life. The force countering our deaths.

Open the windows, unlock the doors: A new human arrives. (All machines must die! A new human arrives!)

Bow to its struggle, bow to its sorrow, hail its push. (To it, all the pain - happiness, decay - glory, needs - was but a renaissance.)

All gearings must collapse!  A   n e w   s e l f   a r r i v e s!

VI. Let me welcome it too!