To Too Many After Rosa Luxemburg’s Birthday (first letter)

March 5th has come and gone again and your art and lives still repulse me. You have totally succumbed to the environment in which you move. Your mannered tones, passive-aggressive, boastful performances of information control and moaning over the incompetence of others — why not look into the mirror, where you might discover the whole misery of mankind accurately portrayed. And when you speak of ‘we’ you now mean your mafia of frogs croaking in their swamp; but during those first days of friendship in unknown worlds, you meant my company. Surely I must identify you with the people you now associate with.
You complain and praise in tones that are knowingly dishonest. You don’t move forward at all in changing anything for the better or common good; you side-step and accelerate the way things are. And the difference is one of a chosen kind, not degree. You and your colleagues belong altogether to a different zoological department than I, and never has your complicitous, peevish, two-faced gang been more hatefully indifferent to others (including me and my various efforts). You wouldn’t mind more honesty, you say, but one gets pinched for it permanently. You would be ready to offer a bit of truth but only in exchange for professional opportunities; the profit must be discreetly guaranteed and under the counter immediately. The simplest words of that honest and upright artist, Here I stand, I cannot do otherwise, so help me God—are never spoken by you with sincerity.
It is fortunate that the history of humanity was not made by people like you alone, or we would probably still be living under the Ancien Regime (perhaps it has already reestablished itself). But so far as I am concerned, while I have never been soft, I have, over the course of these many not sent letters, become as hard as polished steel and for quite some time now I have not made the slightest concession, either politically or in personal relations. I need only think of your gallery of heroes to be nauseated.
I swear to you that rather than suffer through your careerist vortex I will sit where I am until the end of my days. I warned you as soon as I was able that I would refuse any relations of power amongst your company of reptiles. I don’t know how to make a recipe for being human, I only know how one is; and when we used to walk together with the red evening sun falling softly on our hearts, you knew it too. Despite all its horror the world remains beautiful, and if there were no cowardly double agents willing to watch it burn it could be more beautiful still. But come: you get a kiss after all, for you might yet stop pretending you haven’t been wholly taken in and once again attempt to live with dignity and noble purpose. It is up to you to find the courage.
jeremy