polyasemic thinking: a brief future / jim leftwich. 2022

One thing I particularly reinsinuate about the idea of asemic writing is its persistence. Once the idea gets inside a brain, it refuses to go away. It mutates and proliferates.

Once the asemic cat got out of the bag, it set off on a mission to conquer the world.

There is a kind of pareidolia prevalent among practitioners and theorists of asemic writing; we may not see the face of Jesus in a greasy frying pan, but we do see quasi-alphabetical shapes just about everywhere. It is hard not to be joyfully reinsinuated in the presence of such a life-affirming mutagenesis of ubiquitous formlessness.

No matter whether we experience it as pre-word or post-word (I could make a case for either, or both), once the virus of asemic writing invades and occupies the brain, it imposes the shape of its cultural desire on everything in its path.

I should take this opportunity to confess: for the past 25 years, I have found myself (my selves) surrounded in all environments by the insistent reinsinuations of asemic writing.

Neither the world nor my brain seems interested in the least in my refusal to believe in the existence of eco-asemics.

Those cumulus clouds drifting over the Snake Range in Eastern Nevada resemble, in places, a kind of quasi-calligraphic drawing.

By quasi-calligraphic drawing I mean asemic writing — standard, normal, universally recognized and accepted asemic writing.

And by asemic I mean polysemic, but I suppose that goes without saying.

The twisted limbs of the pinyon pine at the edge of my campsite suggest a kind of quasi-calligraphic drawing, or polyasemic writing.

I honestly don’t believe in anything called the “asemic war,” but I fought in quite a few of its memorably forgettable battles, lost all of them (if memory serves me well) — lost perhaps most decisively those in which I refused or neglected to participate. 

I should have taken my stand, early on, alongside the term “gestural abstraction”. 

At this late stage of the gamelan, in the summer of 2022, when it has been suggested that asemic theory is becoming coherent, and t/hat the familiar vitriol (volatility, versatility, viscosity, variability, vacuum cleanerity, and snakite venomosity) is no longer provisionally rarefied, I would like to propose, once again, that the only Reasonable approach going forward (at the b/end of the day) is the embrace of Our Magickal Absurdities in a practice of the variable tradition of 3-Chord Linguistics.


–If it is easy, you aren’t trying hard enough.


If you think you understand it, you aren’t playing enough attention.


There is no such thing as asemic writing.

Or asemic oil painting.

Or asemic trumpet playing.

Or asemic pole dancing.

Or asemic fly fishing.

Or asemic role playing.

Or asemic tongue lashing.

Or asemic nose diving.

Or asemic car pooling.

Or asemic cold calling.

Or asemic batshitting.

Or asemic bullshitting.

Or asemic mud wrestling.

Or asemic mud slinging.

Or asemic mind melding.

Or asemic mind reading.

Or asemic long hauling.

Or asemic log rolling.

Or asemic flat lining.

Or asemic red lining.

Or asemic retrofitting.

Or asemic pinch-hitting.

Or asemic bell ringing.

Or asemic whistle stopping.

Or asemic lip syncing.

Or asemic lip reading.

No asemic ping-pong.

No asemic IHOP.

No asemic zen slapping.

No asemic sitting.

No asemic spitting.

No asemic shifting.

No asemic passing.

No asemic hairdos.

No asemic playdough.

No asemic doodling.

No asemic scribbling.

No asemic drooling.

No asemic scattering.

No asemic sleeping.

No such thing as asemic scat singing.





What a flippial crock of reinsinuated floppulence. 

Maybe when I have more time I’ll dismiss it all myself.