Saturday, December 25, 2010

to need self-destruction is human (a collection of 11 poems)

i. just a lil bit of respect

because you and i are living the same way
i become incensed when you walk out
the door banging open/closed as i struggle to put my clothes
on.
you don't have much time to spend
but you're a miser who keeps everything locked up
just in case you'll need it in the future
like the thousands of cake mix boxes your grandmother had stocked
in her cupboard so if the russians came
she could stuff herself until they got her
and then she'd survive on her fat

but the russians never did come
and those cake mix boxes rotted off the shelves
just like all that time you don't spend will stagnate
(but it doesn't work that way)

but why am i complaining so much
you and i both know damn well that if we switched positions
i'd be the one running the marathon
timing my pace to see how fast i could get out the door
without having to talk about it and say
goodbye.

*title

ii. there's no use in wondering

shut me up.

this would be where you come in with consoling
words that flow out like snakes ribbons or streams or rivers
or something flowy
this would be where you tell me how blue my eyes are
blue like the azure sky and the deep beautiful sea
(my eyes are brown)
this would be where you tell me that i'm your
sweetie honeypookums cream pie
(it's funny how you only tell me that after the searing pale sun
burns through the mottled flesh
and i'm exposed)
this would be where you fall down on your knees 
and apologize not with words but with actions
and moments of revelation
this would be where you

overpower me.

*title

iii. a hard rains a-gonna fall

it's still cold in alaska
i remark leaning against your
1992 honda civic
as the wind whips around your brittle fingers
and your wiry blond hair as you try to
get the car started again

shut up
we'll get there if it kills me
i can't not go to my grandfather's funeral
i owe it to him 
just like i owe the fact that i'm here
to the fact that i told you about three years ago
i'd do anything for you
(but the fine print specified going to alaska in the dead
of winter in a stone age car on a wild goose chase
to a rotting corpse was definitely an exception)

you finally get the engine running
sputtering shooting out rasps of warning
and you curse at the hood and say
get in we have to get there before she dies
12 miles away from the cemetery &
50 miles away from the nearest gas station &
70 miles away from any living person
bessie collapsed on the ice not with a whisper
but with a bellow

so i guess it's a good thing we remembered our mittens

*title

iv. the times they are a-changin'

boom.
said god

but the world still went on

what the hell
i said BOOM.


but everyone still kept doing their own thing

and that's when he realized

that life didn't depend on him anymore
and that the generations of those who had believed in him
had left seeds
of those who were too selfish to give up their piece of the sun &
their little piece of grass & their own sense of beauty
of those who did not have faith in him

but in themselves.

* title

v. delilah

it's all talk.

you're his girl and he has you
because he's your man and you love him
and as the affection scrapes against the wall 
(so sweetly o sweetly would you touch me?)
your legs bear the imprint of his hard kisses 
when you sit down on the dirty linoleum floor
you are so full of joy

laughing away the spirals that burst in your mind
that find you sprawled at the bottom of the stairs
that come tumbling down like a rainbow-
the forest greens and deep lilac purples
the crimsons, the midnight blues
all the vibrant colours 
that sprinkle down when you twirl around in your pale white dress
you are so full of life 

grazing your mottled skin 
holding you like shadows, his fingers 
leave purple marks (but gently so gently)
without the stroke of his hand against your cheek
you can't function one day

so full of love

*  title

vi. pauline

i guess that's the point of it all
my mama said when she found out i was pregnant
body against body, fluid intertwining with fluid
what else would you expect
than a tomato-red, dripping baby with the voice of a banshee

it's god's will, you know
my papa told me when i came home with bruises on my collarbones
and he came in with a bottle of jack and a pair of dirty diapers
what else would you expect
from a trash, goodfornothing girl like me

i always knew this would happen
my brother said under his voice when he was driving us home
on I-10 after he had just gotten out of state penitentiary
what else would you expect
than a few busted heads with pools of blood collecting near the gutters

why did you let him do this to me
my daughter asked me, her eyes bigger than our fake chinese plates
her teddy bear almost dismembered from how tightly he was being held
what else would you expect
from a man whose twisted, broken eyes could not focus on nothing else except innocence

now here we are, and here we are
on a rickety old bed
that hasn't seen the warmth of flesh for more than a year
what else would you expect
what else could you accept

title

vii. procrastination

the time is not right yet
i can feel it in my hollowed-out bones
i think i'll wait another year

the sun crawls through the mist that spreads like ink
while the clouds descend upon the city
the time is not right yet

the wind cuts skin, leaving dead cells floating
like plant seeds searching for warm, moist soil to grow
i think i'll wait another year

like a sculptor, the winter strips us down to our veins
and builds us up again into fresh, new humans
the time is not right yet

i sit on the frayed rug in my cheap apartment
staring at the different methods of felo de se
i think i'll wait another year

what if my cat ate my body?
she'd die from food poisoning

the time is not right yet
i think i'll wait another year

viii: pity, he looked just like my ex too


officer, forgive me please
i truly didn't know i was speeding

no, i'm not under the influence
you can see that my pupils aren't dilated
i can walk more or less in a straight line
i can't say the alphabet backwards
but i can count from 1 to 100

oh, sure you can check the car
but i don't think you're allowed to do that
as you can see, i don't have any alcohol
or illegal drugs in my glove compartment

that smell in the backseat is my carrion flower
carrion flower, yes, you know the flower
that smells like rotten meat
no, it's big and it's quite rare

it's in a body bag because it needs oxygen conservation
and that was the biggest thing i could find to fit it in
no, i swear, officer, i'm not pulling your leg
i don't think it would be wise to check

i really don't think it'd be wise for you to check
officer, because now i need to find another body bag.

ix: to need self-destruction is human


you can read the paper
when the war is over
when the industrial smog completely
blocks out the sun
when we will all be corralled in tall buildings
built of steel and concrete
and taller than the clouds
buildings built with barred windows
so no one can fall out and break a neck

everyone knows that the war is for
the public good
its purpose to erase racial cultural religious
differences gender discrimination and intolerance
to create world peace and a world only john lennon
could have imagined

the enemy is on the other face of the mirror
on the dark side of the moon
He has infiltrated the populace through the backdoors
of the mind, creeped and crawled, spread like ink
into our brains, so much that we do not know
our own thoughts from His

and we shall win out against Him
because we are brave and strong enough
with centuries of war in our books of history
that show how well we have fought against ourselves

and when we have won
we will build a new world
full of Beauty and Truth
devoid of all racial cultural religious
differences gender discrimination and intolerance
we will build a new world where the shrapnel of battle
will be buried deep under the brittle fragile earth
we will forget the horrors of the last war we fought
the war to end all wars

but just in case He comes back
we must protect ourselves from His might
we must build tall buildings, taller than the clouds
so He will be unable to climb up them
we must build tall buildings, built of steel and concrete
so He will be unable to drill through them
we must build tall buildings, with barred windows
so He will be unable to get through them

and we shall read the paper so it can tell us
just how well we won the war

x: curdled


it's pretty dirty business
working from 9 to 5
mopping up brain and blood
off the kitchen floors of the formerly rich

you'd think those wives would notice
the sums of money their husbands spent
on diamonds that they never saw a sparkle of
but it's hard to see anything through several bottles of 'scripts

and then five years later into their thirty year old broken marriage
they'll remember a moment that didn't seem quite right
milk it for all of its worth, then dramatically drink the night away
wake up, find that handgun, and send him to heaven's pearly gates

the deed would be messy, what with all the brain bits, hair, and crying
hysterically screaming at the police 'he cheated, do you understand, he cheated'
but they don't care, murder is murder, no matter what the cause
and they'd seal the house off with yellow tape and take the woman away

that's where we come in, with our buckets of lukewarm water
our detergents, our brittle brushes, and mops
checking the house for left-over money and food
while wiping off cops' prints and making the floors look presentable

the job doesn't pay much because after all, we are just maids
but the kicks we get are completely worth the lack of money
the gore, the furniture, and all the ballroom dresses you can put on
and sometimes, we find the killer in the closet, waiting for a chance to run

and then, some of us get offed too
while the rest of us rush back to our trucks
as we watch the murderer jump over hedges
and curse our luck, because we have to work an extra hour

xi: merry christmas

won't you hold me through the night
your hand fitting puzzle piece into mine
your other hand laying on my thigh
and our legs intertwined

won't you hold me 'til the morning
as i wake up to your steaming breath
making droplets of water on my neck
and our sweat overpouring

won't you hold me 'til you must go
and as i smile and kiss your hair
i open my eyes and find my teddy bear
enclosed in my arms instead of you

won't you hold me anyway
though you are probably in your own bed
making love to your new girlfriend
i'll just pretend you're mine yet another day

xi: merry christmas

won't you hold me through the night
your hand fitting puzzle piece into mine
your other hand laying on my thigh
and our legs intertwined

won't you hold me 'til the morning
as i wake up to your steaming breath
making droplets of water on my neck
and our sweat overpouring

won't you hold me 'til you must go
and as i smile and kiss your hair
i open my eyes and find my teddy bear
enclosed in my arms instead of you

won't you hold me anyway
though you are probably in your own bed
making love to your new girlfriend
i'll just pretend you're mine yet another day

Thursday, December 23, 2010

ix: to need self-destruction is human

you can read the paper
when the war is over
when the industrial smog completely
blocks out the sun
when we will all be corralled in tall buildings
built of steel and concrete
and taller than the clouds
buildings built with barred windows
so no one can fall out and break a neck

everyone knows that the war is for
the public good
its purpose to erase racial cultural religious
differences gender discrimination and intolerance
to create world peace and a world only john lennon
could have imagined

the enemy is on the other face of the mirror
on the dark side of the moon
He has infiltrated the populace through the backdoors
of the mind, creeped and crawled, spread like ink
into our brains, so much that we do not know
our own thoughts from His

and we shall win out against Him
because we are brave and strong enough
with centuries of war in our books of history
that show how well we have fought against ourselves

and when we have won
we will build a new world
full of Beauty and Truth
devoid of all racial cultural religious
differences gender discrimination and intolerance
we will build a new world where the shrapnel of battle
will be buried deep under the brittle fragile earth
we will forget the horrors of the last war we fought
the war to end all wars

but just in case He comes back
we must protect ourselves from His might
we must build tall buildings, taller than the clouds
so He will be unable to climb up them
we must build tall buildings, built of steel and concrete
so He will be unable to drill through them
we must build tall buildings, with barred windows
so He will be unable to get through them

and we shall read the paper so it can tell us
just how well we won the war

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

x: curdled

it's pretty dirty business
working from 9 to 5
mopping up brain and blood
off the kitchen floors of the formerly rich

you'd think those wives would notice
the sums of money their husbands spent
on diamonds that they never saw a sparkle of
but it's hard to see anything through several bottles of 'scripts

and then five years later into their thirty year old broken marriage
they'll remember a moment that didn't seem quite right
milk it for all of its worth, then dramatically drink the night away
wake up, find that handgun, and send him to heaven's pearly gates

the deed would be messy, what with all the brain bits, hair, and crying
hysterically screaming at the police 'he cheated, do you understand, he cheated'
but they don't care, murder is murder, no matter what the cause
and they'd seal the house off with yellow tape and take the woman away

that's where we come in, with our buckets of lukewarm water
our detergents, our brittle brushes, and mops
checking the house for left-over money and food
while wiping off cops' prints and making the floors look presentable

the job doesn't pay much because after all, we are just maids
but the kicks we get are completely worth the lack of money
the gore, the furniture, and all the ballroom dresses you can put on
and sometimes, we find the killer in the closet, waiting for a chance to run

and then, some of us get offed too
while the rest of us rush back to our trucks
as we watch the murderer jump over hedges
and curse our luck, because we have to work an extra hour

viii: pity, he looked just like my ex too

officer, forgive me please
i truly didn't know i was speeding

no, i'm not under the influence
you can see that my pupils aren't dilated
i can walk more or less in a straight line
i can't say the alphabet backwards
but i can count from 1 to 100

oh, sure you can check the car
but i don't think you're allowed to do that
as you can see, i don't have any alcohol
or illegal drugs in my glove compartment

that smell in the backseat is my carrion flower
carrion flower, yes, you know the flower
that smells like rotten meat
no, it's big and it's quite rare

it's in a body bag because it needs oxygen conservation
and that was the biggest thing i could find to fit it in
no, i swear, officer, i'm not pulling your leg
i don't think it would be wise to check

i really don't think it'd be wise for you to check
officer, because now i need to find another body bag.

Monday, December 20, 2010

vii: procrastination

the time is not right yet
i can feel it in my hollowed-out bones
i think i'll wait another year

the sun crawls through the mist that spreads like ink
while the clouds descend upon the city
the time is not right yet

the wind cuts skin, leaving dead cells floating
like plant seeds searching for warm, moist soil to grow
i think i'll wait another year

like a sculptor, the winter strips us down to our veins
and builds us up again into fresh, new humans
the time is not right yet

i sit on the frayed rug in my cheap apartment
staring at the different methods of felo de se
i think i'll wait another year

what if my cat ate my body?
she'd die from food poisoning

the time is not right yet
i think i'll wait another year

Sunday, December 19, 2010

salvation by death (XVI)

we're still screaming
traumatized by our sudden change of environment
dripping in placenta and blood
we expand our lungs to take our first breath
of that sky earth life
that we will take for granted until we die
still screaming
dripping in cum and blood
the thoughts running like mice on a wheel
why didn't we take another look
why the fuck didn't we take another look
at the grass
at her eyes
at ourselves
we take our shrunken wrinkled souls in our hands
the souls that look just like we used to when we were born
the souls that we ignored for years because we thought
we could always use them later
now, we take them into our hands
we hold them carefully like something precious about to die
and we wait for the explosion to come and take us
we wait for the fire to restore us

Friday, December 17, 2010

i am the lizard king (V)

i am the sun burning holes in the eyes of those
who have forgotten that my light will destroy them

i am the leaf on the ground, engulfed in sun
my veins and skeleton transparent through my pale green skin

i am the soul outside of the body
looking down at myself acting&reacting to life while on autopilot

i am the smoke curling out from my mouth
the sparks shooting through my body start the fire

i am lost in reality where real is not what you think real is
and everything i hold dear fades into the background as unimportant

i am god

i am life

death

the root of all things good and evil

i am it all.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Art College Essay

Art has always been a permanent companion of human civilization throughout history. But we live in an age where art loses its centerpiece place in peoples’ lives. In an age when technology and what is fashionable seem to define the standards for beauty and creativity, one must ask the age-old question: What is art?  The dictionary says that art is “the process or product of deliberately arranging elements in a way to affect the senses or the emotions”. These “elements” are visual art, literature, theatre, music, dance, and recently, cinematography. However, what really is art? We cannot call everything that is created for the purpose of affecting the senses art. Our senses change, as does the definition, which changes from generation to generation. Is art a question of quality that, as a society, we know in an intrinsic way? Are we born with this ability to differentiate or do we “learn” it from the people around us? Is art what the public consensus is or is it what the critics profess it is? Is it our personal likes and dislikes or is it above us? What is the place of art in a modern society and is it still relevant in the 21st century?

John Locke, one of the most influential philosophers of the 17th century, believed that when we are born, we are tabula rasa (blank slates) and that we acquire all knowledge during our lives through experience and perception, rather than having an amount of pre-conceptual knowledge. When we first see a painting or read a book, we form opinions about the work, but others (either authority figures or peers) usually tell us whether it is “good” or not in order for us to constitute its worth. However, the public can, at times, be misguided about whom it prefers. For example, during his lifetime, Vincent van Gogh was largely unknown (he sold one painting), yet today, his work is considered one of the greatest of all time. The tragedy is that the public recognized his pieces after years of them sitting in galleries and only started appreciating them after his death. That being said, critics are not always correct either. Throughout history, it was common for many critics and patrons to show their preference for certain artists simply because of political or personal reasons without there being an actual artistic basis for their decision to endorse one artist over another. For example, the academic art community considered William-Adolphe Bouguereau one of the greatest painters in the world in his time and millionaires bought his pieces. However, his work soon fell into anonymity due to the public’s changing tastes and the rise of Impressionism. One’s own likes and dislikes cannot only be the criteria for art either. A person can like one painting and another person can like another painting, yet both paintings can be seen as terrible to a third person.

I believe that art should stand the test of time, the test of generation after generation of societies all over the world sensing a personal and emotional reaction to the piece. Neither the public nor the critics must acclaim the work immediately, but someone else besides one’s mother must find the art valuable. In addition, the value of the work should not wilt over time, but on the contrary, should stay stable as time progresses.

            The issue of art may not be such an important one at first sight. Most people who live in today’s society aren’t artists or writers and some of us don’t go to museums or read. We don’t think we care, but in reality, we all do in an indirect way. Art is vital to a society’s growth and without it; we would cease to truly be human. The ancient Greeks believed that what makes us truly unique and complete as human beings is art. In every community across the world, no matter its economic status, art exists. In a world without art,we would still have the sciences and technology, but we would not have what makes us truly alive. Art allows us to express ourselves in numerous ways and provides additional meaning and happiness to our lives. Whether we make art or only view the end product, we are all influenced and shaped by it in an essential way. The age-old debate of whether art is necessary for humanity is ended by Karl Paulnack who explains: "In a place where people are only focused on survival, on the bare necessities, the obvious conclusion is that art must be, somehow, essential for life. Art is proof of survival; art is part of the human spirit, an unquenchable expression of who we are. Art is one of the ways in which we say 'I am alive, and my life has meaning’.”


The purpose of art haunts me every time I write. Since I was young, writing has been the core method through which I have been able to express myself as an individual. I started writing prose and lyrics at thirteen. A year later, I discovered the world of poetry. Recently, I have been writing formal pieces on social issues and literary critiques. Though I don’t expect to publish my work, I hope I will because I never fully write for myself. What I write, I encourage others to read, to critique, and to give feedback so I know the reactions my work has produced. My goal is to communicate with others, to show my readers what I believe, and to gain insight into what they believe also. In addition, I strive to produce the best material I can and am continuously trying to improve my style of writing and become the best writer I can be. I cannot say that I need to write for literal survival, as I’m sure that if I stopped right now, I would not die. However, if someone persuaded me to do so, I would feel as though an essential part of my life was missing.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

anti-war song

Cry, mama, cry
Cry until the blood red dawn

Cry, mama, cry
Cry until the blood red dawn

Because your boy ain't comin' back
No, your boy, he ain't comin' back home

Get that musty old veil out
Get it out and wear it proud

I said get that musty old veil out
Get it out and wear it proud

Because your love ain't comin' back
No, you ain't gonna see him no more

Go to the river
And spread the ashes 'round

Go to the river
And spread those ashes around

Because that's all you have left of them
That's all that's left of the war

I said that's all you have left of them
Things ain't like they were before

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Belated Thoughts On Wear Purple Day, Suicide, and Bullying

I realize that this is written several days after the actual day this happened. However, I'd like to explain what I felt on that day and it's taken me some time to analyze the thoughts and decisions I made.

This Wednesday, October 20, 2010 was Wear Purple Day, where people dressed in the colour purple to honour the students who killed themselves over the past few months because of their sexuality and to spread awareness about anti-gay bullying, and bullying in general. Several weeks before, I had thought about what the day meant and decided I wouldn't wear purple. These were my reasons:
  • Although I was angry and ashamed that there was an increase in anti-gay bullying and that people still believe that homosexuals are out to eat your babies and destroy the world, I didn't condone the suicides of those teenagers. I also thought that those suicides could have been prevented, if the proper measures would have been taken in time. Let's take a look at the victims-Asher Brown, 13 shot himself in the head. He started being bullied two years before because of his small size, that he didn't wear designer clothes, and that he was Buddhist. He was taunted with gay slurs and with mock sexual acts. Those were two years in which no one did absolutely anything. Two years in which his parents did notice that he was getting bullied but did nothing to prevent it (yes, they did send a note to the school and tried to talk to the school officials, but after they realized that nobody would prevent the bullying, couldn't they have enrolled him into another school?). Two years in which there could have been measures taken, both by the school and by Brown's parents to stop the bullying and the suicide. Seth Walsh, 13 hung himself. The bullying started in fourth grade because he was more comfortable with girls, not interested in sports, and not aggressive. He was more feminine than his male peers and...gay. When one of his classmates found out, he spread it around the school, and the abuse became more centralized and more intense. His family was aware of the bullying and they tried to prevent it by moving him to another school and homeschooling him. Unfortunately, that didn't help. However, if you look at this case and others, Walsh could have been much worse off. There was no physical harm done to him (although he was followed and verbally abused). Justin Aaberg, 15 came out as gay when he was 13. His parents were supportive but only knew of one instance where he had been bullied. He had told them that it was no big deal. In reality, he had been harassed since the eighth grade when a boy went up to him, grabbed him by his genitals, and asked him "You like this, don't you?" He was found crying in the hallway but didn't go to the school counselor. This suicide, I believe, is Aaberg's own fault. His parents were supportive of his sexual preference and if he had told them what was happening to him, they would have helped him. His friends could have helped him. This wasn't a hopeless case where everyone around him despised him. Billy Lucas, 15 started being harassed a year before he comitted suicide. He hanged himself after he called 911 and told the police that they should come because he was causing his mother trouble and that something would happen. His mother dismissed the emergency and told the police not to come. Tyler Clementi, 18 jumped off George Washington Bridge after his roomate secretly filmed him while he was having sex with his boyfriend and posted it on the Internet. This case reminds me of the event several years ago where a high school student killed herself because her ex-boyfriend sent nude photos of her to all of the colleges she was applying to. This could have been easily prevented also. Transferring to a different school until the tumult died down could have saved him. What did his boyfriend do? I didn't hear of him killing himself. Basically, my point is that all of those suicides could have been prevented, either by the victims themselves; their parents, family or friends; or the school. Bullying can't really be prevented, even by caution, awareness, and preventive measures. Kids will be kids will treat others like shit unless they don't. You can't stop that unless they themselves choose not to bully others.
  • Wearing the colour purple might spread awareness to others about (anti-gay) bullying and reach out to others who are being bullied at the time, but what truly does it do? It's not effective enough. It won't really do anything. Even though victims might see that there are others who support them and are willing to help them, they may still suicide. Action is what must be done. And in my school, a more-or-less liberal school, wearing a purple ribbon won't really change anything. It would be more effective in a conservative, homophobic school, but not here.
  • I'm seventeen years old. I can't vote, I'm in high school, and no one takes me seriously. I am really unable to do anything to help the gay rights movement.
These were the thoughts that were going on in my head before I got to school on Wednesday. The day before, however, these thoughts had been ruffled up greatly by quodmenutriut and what she had said in a response to one of my terribly pessimistic and cynical comments. She had said that even though it might not be action, wearing purple, even in a liberal school, will help spread awareness and show those who are being bullied (even in an open school, there are still homophobes) that you support them. Basically, that if you don't try, really nothing will get done. So, as I got to school, I saw my friends who are very open-minded and pro-gay, so they were all wearing purple pins. One of them asked me why I wasn't wearing one and I explained to her the three above points, but in less detail. She repeated what Khai had told me the day before and told me to wear a ribbon. In my confusion of what I truly thought of this situation and the meaning of this day, I took the ribbon and wore it all day. One person asked me about it and looked away once he realized what it was all about. The entire day I felt as though what I was doing wasn't helping at all until as I was walking to my last class, I saw someone who wasn't in the Gay-Straight Alliance wearing a ribbon. I literally stopped in my tracks, my face fell, and watched him walk past me and away. At that moment, I realized that:

Yes. Wearing a purple ribbon is useful. Not because it means you condone suicide, and not because the people who you are trying to help might kill themselves anyway, but because of those who you do reach out to, some of them will realize that there are people in the world who support them and will stand up for them and not let them kill themselves so easily. All of my points that I thought had supported my 'Don't Wear Purple' argument actually completely killed it. Even though I am seventeen, I can help prevent bullying. Because I am seventeen, I can. I personally have gone through it, and I am at the age where it is perfect to help my peers on a personal level. In my liberal school, I have personally been insulted by homophobes and even though I would have insulted him right back, and much more scathingly than he did me, there are others who can't do that. Although I do not honour the victims and don't condone their actions, I believe that that is the point of wearing the ribbon: to tell those who are being bullied "Look. Don't do that. It's not worth it and you can live through it. We're here to help. Truly."

Edit: As quodmenutriut commented, the way that my thoughts actually changed is proof of the power of group action. I'm living proof that thoughts and actions can change because of such an event.
And as a happy ending to this post: start wearing purple for me nowwwwwww

Saturday, October 16, 2010

don't blink. (XIV)

the sound is not asleep, it's moving under my feet
not a shout, but a whisper, hardly heard by the dreaming
it creeps on wispy heels, its fingers lacing 'round the earth
and appears in the shady corners of our trembling nerves

it inches slowly up our bodies, starting at our soles
shallowly breathing all the secrets of the world
speaking to us in the night, leading us through the maze
filled of dead ends and nightmares with sharp-toothed eyes

licking our bellies, it burrows into our soft moonlit skin
biting the ends of our flowing arteries and veins
feasting on our hearts, the blood giving concreteness to its form
stealing our sunken eyes and swollen eyes for its own

it seeps into our slumbering, unguarded minds
its fingertips bloodying the creatures it finds
its body swaying to the rhythm of dance of death
asphyxiating all that it steps underneath

it lays waste to what was before, quietly, unseen
and settles itself on the throne of our subconscious as king
gazing towards the rising sun and waits motionless, as stone,
and smiles as we wake to realize that we are weeping angels also.

www.youtube.com/watch

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Issues with Analysis of Menages a Trois


The magic of a ménage à trois

A menage is usually associated with tortured bohemians driven by wild passions — but for one man it was a surprisingly calm and positive experience

Ewan Morrison
The ménage à trois seems, at first glance, to be rather quaint. It conjures images of Jeanne Moreau, with her two lovers in the film Jules et Jim, or Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir with their shared student lovers in Paris in the 1950s. As a way of life, it appears to have all but vanished: its conflicting passions seem out of date in this era of sexual freedom and gender equality. I'm sure the menage a trois has not disappeared. What truly is one? It's basically three people, romantically and sexually attracted to each other, living in the same house. Sounds like a normal polyamory relationship, and we all know that "in this era of sexual freedom and gender equality", polyamory is becoming more acceptable (or, perhaps the proper term is tolerated).
Equality is the modern mantra for relationships, but there’s plenty of evidence to show that striving for equality can cause problems. How many of us have had some experience of being in a couple in which one partner tries to make the other more like him or herself? I've never actually heard of someone trying to make their partner be more like himself. It's always the "ideal" picture of what he thinks his partner should be, unless he's a narcissist. Usually this becomes a war of attrition, through which both parties ultimately reduce each other’s freedoms; one person surrenders and a regime of compromise, damage limitation and emotional management is established.This terminates any chance of there being a healthy relationship.
This scenario troubles me greatly as I’ve fallen foul of it many times. The hard-won “peace” can lead to boredom, the victor becomes tired of the person they’ve turned into a reflection of themselves and usually, at this point, one partner leaves to start the battle again with a new lover.Again, I've never actually seen the "reflection" challenge. It seems more likely that one becomes bored of the other because of other reasons, such as lack of emotional, sexual, and/or romantic feelings, length of time the relationship has endured, etc.
There is a radical alternative and it was one advocated by Simone de Beauvoir. She claimed that “there can be no equality between the sexes, only conflict” and believed that monogamy always led to adultery. There can be equality between the sexes, and I'm not sure why there can't be. I'm not sure how one wanting to change his partner into a reflection of himself has anything to do with the male and female sexes, for if this situation happens, it can also happen in homosexual relationships. Also, monogamy doesn't always lead to adultery. I don't know how Beauvoir could have come up with this. Perhaps, she or her partners always cheated in their monogamous relationships, but I'm pretty sure and am positively certain that monogamy does not always lead to adultery. Polyamory can too, by the way. It really depends on the people in the relationship, not the type of relationship. Her ironic solution was to accept conflict rather than trying to eradicate it — to accept and welcome adultery into the home. Her ideal was to live within a ménage à trois; to fight daily with irreconcilable differences in an emotionally charged war-game of constantly shifting allegiances. First of all, what is this conflict that this woman is talking about? I don't see it. Second, accepting and welcoming adultery is completely different than what a menage a trois or a poly relationship is even about. Adultery is cheating and cheating is unacceptable in any kind of relationship, the two above mentioned included. And why in heaven would you want to fight with these irreconcilable differences every single day except if you're fucking insane? Wait, I just got a lightbulb moment. This chick is crazy. Perhaps the rest of the poly communities should not really think too hard on her theories about love and relationships.
From personal experience I can honestly say that, crazy as it sounds, the ménage à trois might be a solution to the problems of contemporary relationships.
In 1993, I was 22 and a recent arts graduate, when I walked, quite by chance into a ménage. Carol, 30, and Jake, 44, were artists, bohemians and also my landlords — I lived in the flat above their home in Camden, North London. Jake had been a successful artist in the 1980s but had fallen out of fashion when the new Young British Artist scene took over.
Carol had been a muse for the older man — he’d made many paintings that attempted to capture her youth. It was clear to me, on moving in, that Jake’s star had long since faded as had their affections; they had been living on his savings, he drank excessively and had become boorish and resentful. He picked fights with Carol, claiming that she was becoming a “typical bourgeois housewife”.This is where a divorce would come in, you know, in a normal relationship.
She bitched at him and hated herself for doing so; she had never built a career of her own or had children, and was often resentful because of all that she had sacrificed for him. They were trapped in a stalemate, becoming equal in as much as they were denying each other joy and freedom. Their clothes had become grey with washing.The author is implying that being equal with your partner has to be in lack of joy and freedom. IF I'M NOT HAPPY, NEITHER WILL YOU DAMMIT!
Jake and Carol were hungry for my attention. I spent long nights hearing Jake’s encyclopaedic theories on politics and art, I became the student of the older man, and perhaps in doing so accelerated Carol’s disillusionment with him and her desire to rebel.
He talked of the Surrealists, Marcel Duchamp, Salvador Dalí, and Paris in the 1920s, of Anaïs Nin. All of whom, it is now well known, were engaged in long and historically significant ménages à trois. (The list of artists and thinkers who were involved in ménages in the last 200 years is revelatory and includes: Jack Kerouac, Paul Éluard, Émile Zola, George Eliot, Eugene O’Neil, Duchamp, Augustus John, Stanley Spencer, Marguerite Duras, Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway, D.H.Lawrence, and Nietzsche.)
Influenced as he was by so many, I do not think that Jake had consciously conceived the idea that his wife should seduce me. As with most ménages à trois, it started with adultery. If Jake taught me about art then Carol taught me the art of deception.The author is also implying that all menages a trois have to be within the context of marriage, adultery, deception, and secrecy. I repeat. THIS. IS. NOT. WHAT. A. HEALTHY. RELATIONSHIP. IS. LIKE. And it's really not helping poly relationships either.
As the months went by and our liaisons became more frequent, we became more careless in hiding ourselves. Strange changes occurred within him; he reported one day that he and “the bitch” had started having sex again after a period of many stale years. Their fights did not abate but now led to furious lovemaking. His smile secretly thanked me.
Our ménage did not extend to “three in a bed” (the modern day “threesome” usually utilises a “disposable” third party and is not an ongoing commitment between three). In many of the most famous ménages, the long-term liaison with the third person is a known fact, which is nonetheless never discussed. Sometimes, it is.
This was the case with Anaïs Nin whose husband Hugo was fully aware of her bed-hopping with Henry Miller but quietly condoned it because of the sexual and artistic awakening it had brought to his wife. Had the reality been forced into the open, it may have ended their marriage.And who's to say that would have been a bad thing? I don't understand. Why is decieving your partner(s) a good thing? For sexual and artistic awakening? Honesty is always the best policy even if it ends a relationship. You shouldn't have cheated in the first place. If Hugo would have been okay with Anais having a relationship with Miller and his wife (which he supposedly was, secretly), he would have been okay with the relationship if she had straight-up told him before she had sex with Miller.
This was also the case with the ménage between Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady and Neal’s wife Carolyn. With Cassady’s permission and encouragement, Kerouac lived with Carolyn when Neal was touring. Whether Jack and Neal were also lovers is up for debate but certainly Kerouac was in love with Neal Cassady’s mind (he was the inspiration for the hero, Dean Moriarty, in On the Road).
It is clear from memoirs that their creative relationship-à-trois was never discussed. This secrecy is hard to grasp in our era of emotional transparency, personal accountability, the confessional and the talking cure. It is impossible to imagine the sort of trio in which Kerouac was involved sitting down with a relationship counsellor on a “level playing field”, trying to “iron out differences” in the name of equality. What does this even mean?
No, for a mènage to flourish, everything must remain unsaid, there must be secrets and deceptions, all conflicts must be kept alive, inflamed, eroticised. Flying in the face of our modern values, it is not self-expression but the constant suppression of truth that is empowering. You're fucking kidding me. Oh my god. Oh. My. Fucking. Jesus. Christ. Mother. Of. God.
Those who have more formally organised agreements are the exception to the rule. There are no fucking exceptions to the goddamn rule! That's not even a rule! The rule is always be open with your partner(s) and communicate! What kind of society do you live in? How many of your relationships have been failures? Anais Nin and her husband didn't divorce because they couldn't afford to and because they were both emotionally retarded*! The example here is Henri-Pierre Roché, the author of the book upon which the film Jules et Jim was based.
In 1925, Roché lived with a married couple, the Hessels, and had an arrangement to have “weekends off” from his sexual obligations to Frau Hessel. Although musical beds took place on a rota, the tone of communications on the subject (revealed in Roché’s memoirs) was polite. “We shall stay at Fontenay and you shall also have a room to yourself,” wrote Herr Hessel to Roché.
Such an unspoken arrangement was similar to what I experienced. Even when Carol and I had slept together, it was agreed that she would creep back to Jake’s bed so that he could wake to see her face — this was part of our silent understanding, our “perverse equilibrium”. Any attempt I made at confession he waved away with a laugh. I knew that he knew and he knew that I knew he knew. And Carol smiled over us both.That's complete and utter bullshit. How can you expect a relationship to thrive that way?
Carol enjoyed the pretence at deceiving her partner and he was reinvigorated by having to fight for her attentions. Their musty old home had been transformed into a cauldron of competing energies, which then spilled over into their lives. I know some people who enjoy being deceived in return for a re-invigoration of their relationship. My question is how long will the relationship last after the spark?
Carol started looking for work, radically changed her appearance and began shaping a future independent of “the old tyrant”; Jake in turn began experimenting with new ways of making art. As for me, although they drained me, I felt absolutely indispensable to their survival and the constant flexing of the emotional muscles brought a sense of personal strength.
It can be no coincidence that the ménage is linked to the ambitious and powerful. Voltaire and Rousseau were involved in their own liaisons-à-trois as they drew up the concepts of liberty and freedom. Comrade Lenin, François Mitterrand and Franklin D. Roosevelt, all had two women at the same time. Marx and Engels, both had wife and lover — Engels living with two sisters. It’s possible that the same energies of ambition and belief in change that fuel creativity are common to those drawn to politics, and that the ménage à trois is the natural home for such living forces. It can be a coincidence that the menage is linked to the ambitious and powerful. Not all those who are in them are famous and heard-of. Being in a menage is not better than being in a monogamous relationship. There is no such thing as a better type of relationship, only the one that works for you.
Our ménage had to end, not because the pressures became too great but because the outside world had its own demands. I had been with Jake and Carol for almost nine months and was living on next to nothing, when an offer of work came up in Scotland. Jake refused point-blank to allow me to leave. He would reduce the rent to zero. He feared getting old, he said. Carol was scared of being left alone with Jake — things would regress, she would have to leave him. Even as I moved out, nothing was said of what had happened between us. The menage acted like a drug, a respite from reality. It would have been easier to just suck up and deal with the issues of the existing relationship.
The ménage is certainly not for everyone, its demands are taxing and there are victims. Many now claim that the affairs of Sartre and De Beauvoir were exploitative, that their “third parties” were abused. Their lovers were certainly not treated as equals (ironic, as they were both Gauchiste radicals). To the modern mind, which advocates equality, fairness, and the avoidance of all conflict, this must seem utterly undemocratic — a tyranny of the passions. Menages don't have to be taxing and there don't have to be victims if the relationship is honest. How hard is it for people to understand this?
Nonetheless, one must look at the many artists and radicals who were involved in ménages and acknowledge the power of the artworks and concepts that have been unleashed from living in such a way. Granted, but there are other ways to unleash the art of great people other than dishonesty and pain.
Sixteen years later I learned that both Carol and Jake have new careers, and a live-in lover. Their marriage has survived when nearly all those around me (apart from gay and lesbian couples) have failed. This, again, is a generality. Their marriage could have survived, but not necessarily well, and if it had, Carol and Jake must have changed something in their arrangements for that to have happened. Also, gay and lesbian couples, as any other type of couples have the same rate of failure in a relationship.  As for me, after many attempts at monogamous union, I find myself writing about the ménage à trois with a certain nostalgia. I don't understand why people have to pain themselves with doing something that obviously doesn't suit them to appease some certain power (society or their own guilt, for example). If the author wanted to be in a menage a trois and liked the concept and relationship, he should have searched for one, not a monogamous relationship.
A true ménage is a rare thing, and cannot be willed into existence. Who in their right mind would invite such conflict into their bedroom? Either someone very mad, very eccentric or very brave. Such people are rare in this time when everyone is striving towards that sameness that is called equality. This is ridiculous. A true menage is a very popular thing and can be done easily, provided the people have the right mindset. There is nothing wrong with equality. I still don't understand why he has an issue with it, he didn't even explain.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

if the neon bible is true (XIII)

*for all those who have been discriminated against because of their sexual preferences or gender identity

if the neon bible is true
then let me breathe my last breath
and let me join the others below

let me stare down into the murky waters
feel my body plummeting into liquid concrete
if the neon bible is true

let me be left bloody and torn on the grimy sidewalk
in front of the flickering multi-coloured sign
and let me join the others below

mould me into clay and do with me as you will
for i am yours to take and destroy i am not human
if the neon bible is true

don't let my body be eaten by nature, for i am not worthy
proclaim to the heavens that i have damned a nation
and let me join the others below

tear off my clothes and consume me fully with your body
for in between my screams i will be grateful to you
if the neon bible is true
then let me join the others below

Thursday, September 30, 2010

life after death (VI)

spread the ashes of the colours over this heart of mine
bury me in white satin under the peach trees, the same place
where my mother entered into this world, screaming and free
damned into this life by generations of women selfish enough
not to ask their developing fetuses if they wanted to be pushed
and cursed out into blinding cold light and air

carry me to the dried-up river and lay me down in its folds
stroke my hard, pale cheek and brush my dry hair from my face
reform my lips from their grimace to an expression of peace
breathe into me your life, your soul
so that i can cross the styx safely and arrive at the gates of hades
without the sightless stares of the bloodless rending me blind

dress me in white, the colour of innocence and purity
two things i never was, not even in my earliest days out of the womb
humans can never be innocent or pure once they taste
the unforgivable breath of terre or once they swallow the dirt
of life, their lungs heaving
their bones aching with the knowledge of the world

do not forget me yet, grave-digger
keep me in your memory, in one of the unused rooms in your mind
and once in a while, cross the dried-up river and the long horsetail grass
kneel under the peach trees and place a flower on my tombstone
send me hope in the form of a sparrow, to help me cross
the darkness to elysium.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

depression (II)

in this cage
the seventeen birds guarding my heart
desperately beat their wings trying to escape
the stench of rotting flesh permeating their nostrils
the copper blood turned black bubbling in their throats
all the lifewill oozing out their pores
dreams dripping off inky claws
that scrape the walls of this sinking ship
whose captain has locked the door and destroyed the key
left the lights off and turned the stove on
lain down while humming
if you want to sing out, sing out
and if you want to be free, be free
the notebook paper on the nightstand with the scrawled words
SING, LITTLE BIRDS, SING
            FLY AWAY

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Rebuttal Against The National Review's "The Case for Marriage"


www.nationalreview.com/articles/245649/case-marriage-editors

If it is true, as we are constantly told, that American law will soon redefine marriage to accommodate same-sex partnerships, the proximate cause for this development will not be that public opinion favors it, although it appears to be moving in that direction. It will be that the most influential Americans, particularly those in law and the media, have been coming increasingly to regard opposition to same-sex marriage as irrational at best and bigoted at worst. They therefore dismiss expressions of that opposition, even when voiced by a majority in a progressive state, as illegitimate. Judges who believe that same-sex marriage is obviously just and right can easily find ways to read their views into constitutions, to the applause of the like-minded.
The emerging elite consensus in favor of same-sex marriage has an element of self-delusion about it. It denies that same-sex marriage would work a radical change in American law or society, insisting to the contrary that within a few years of its triumph everyone will wonder what all the fuss was about. But its simultaneous insistence that opponents are the moral equivalent of the white supremacists of yesteryear belies these bland assurances. How? After all, the white supremacists of yesteryear are just that...of yesteryear. Our tolerance for racism is quite limited: The government, while it generally respects the relevant constitutional limits, is active in the cause of marginalizing racists and eradicating racist beliefs and behaviors. Moreover, social sanctions against racism, both overt and implied, are robust. They might be now but at the time when African American rights were being fought for, the government could care less for about a century if whites were discriminating against blacks or if the KKK was lynching a 12 (14?) year old boy who whistled at a white woman.If our society is truly to regard opposition to same-sex marriage as equivalent to racism, it will have to undergo change both dramatic and extensive. What exact changes are these that are so "dramatic" and "extensive"? Churches that object, for example, will have to be put in the same cultural position as Bob Jones University was in the days when it banned interracial dating, until they too join the consensus. Absolutely not. The issue is not about the churches, the issue is about the government. The government cannot force a church to accept anyone that it doesn't want to. A church is not a public institution, while a university is. It is unconstitutional (under the First Amendment) for the government to meddle in religious affairs. 

If proponents of same-sex marriage thought through these implications, their confidence might evaporate, for it seems highly unlikely that this project will succeed at all, and impossible that it will do so without decades of arduous and divisive social “reform.” This is outright condescending and rude. Personally, I want to punch the author's face into the floorboards so hard, by the time I'm done with him, his face will be a bloody pulp. But I digress. (Yes, I know this is intolerant and unnecessary, but such condescension is intolerant and unnecessary.) That is no reason to shrink from the task, if it is truly a just one. But we should first consider whether the historic and cross-cultural understanding of marriage as the union of a man and a woman really has so little to be said for it. Is this union sexual, romantic, emotional, spiritual? All of the above? Because if it is, I see no reason why a man and a man or a woman and a woman can't be unified in the same way. But we shall see. 

We think that there is quite a bit to be said for it: that it is true, vitally true. But it is a truth so long accepted that it is no longer well understood. Both the fact that we are debating same-sex marriage and the way that debate has progressed suggest that many of us have lost sight of why marriage exists in the first place as a social institution and a matter of public policy. One prominent supporter of same-sex marriage says that the purpose of marriage is to express and safeguard an emotional union of adults; another says that its purpose is to make it more likely that people will have others to give them care in sickness and old age.

So at the risk of awkwardness, we must talk about the facts of life. It is true that marriage is, in part, an emotional union, and it is also true that spouses often take care of each other and thereby reduce the caregiving burden on other people. The second part is not necessarily true. When a woman's husband dies, if she is too old to live by herself, her family usually takes care of her. Also, if you're in a long-term relationship (but not married), the same problem arises. Marriage is not the solution to companionship in old age and sickness. But neither of these truths is the fundamental reason for marriage. The reason marriage exists is that the sexual intercourse of men and women regularly produces children. If it did not produce children, neither society nor the government would have much reason, let alone a valid reason, to regulate people’s emotional unions. If the government is only interested in the institution of marriage because of the procreation that results from it, then the government is interested in the legal or financial aspect of the marriage, not the emotional aspect. The emotional union between a married man and woman does not guarantee their child's success in life. The parents could be very well much in love (for I suppose that is what a healthy emotional union signifies) and the child could very well become a serial killer, which benefits the government not at all. The reason why many marry and then procreate is because of the financial benefits. In fact, the reason why many marry in the first place is to ensure that the emotional union is stable (a marriage is harder to break off than a non-marital relationship because the coffee table needs to be divided in two) and for the financial benefits, an issue that the government is supposed to take care of.  (The government does not regulate non-marital friendships, no matter how intense they are.) If the government doesn't regulate non-marital "friendships", then why should they regulate marital "friendships"? What exactly is the difference? The emotional union can be just as "intense" in a marriage as in a long-term relationship. A couple, whether married or not, can have sex and procreate. Perhaps the difference is the financial benefits one recieves...If mutual caregiving were the purpose of marriage, there would be no reason to exclude adult incestuous unions from marriage. This is where I got the lightbulb. I realized what the actual issue is. Adult incestuous unions are tolerated more or less in society (U.S.). However, adult incestuous marriages are illegal in several states. The author traps himself in terminology; he makes a distinction between a union and a marriage. What is a union? The dictionary equates it with a marriage. However, a union cannot really be the same thing as a marriage. It is simply a relationship. A civil union, on the other hand, is a relationship that is recognized by the federal government. However, for the sake of not getting the terms confused, a civil union is not the same as a marriage. A marriage does not necessarily involve a legal, binding contract, simply a religious ceremony. Therefore, a union (or a civil union) is completely in the hands of the government (with no involvement from religion), while a marriage involves a religous ceremony. Now, if homosexuals want to get married, they can find a church that accepts and tolerates homosexuals and the deed is done. As I said before, the government should not interfere with religious affairs and vice versa. So is it true that homosexuals want to redefine the term marriage? Perhaps. But personally, I don't believe that's truly the issue. In fact, I don't see what the issue is anymore now that both those who are against same-sex "marriage" and those for can be placated. EDIT: I researched and found that marriages are those that have the financial benefits rather than the civil unions. So, in my opinion, it should be the other way around or just have civil unions receive the same benefits as marriage. What the institution and policy of marriage aims to regulate is sex, not love or commitment. The institution marriage does not regulate sex, it regulates procreation. One does not always procreate when one has sex. He's going back on his own argument. These days, marriage regulates sex (to the extent it does regulate it) in a wholly non-coercive manner, sex outside of marriage no longer being a crime. He sounds disappointed by this.

Marriage exists, in other words, to solve a problem that arises from sex between men and women but not from sex between partners of the same gender: what to do about its generativity. The problem that arises from sex is children. Well, then. Isn't that an optimistic view of the world? It has always been the union of a man and a woman (even in polygamous marriages in which a spouse has a marriage with each of two or more persons of the opposite sex) for the same reason that there are two sexes: It takes one of each type in our species to perform the act that produces children. There is a new theory called parthenogenesis that allows for two women to make a (female) child. That does not mean that marriage is worthwhile only insofar as it yields children. (The law has never taken that view.) But the institution is oriented toward child-rearing. (The law has taken exactly that view.) What a healthy marriage culture does is encourage adults to arrange their lives so that as many children as possible are raised and nurtured by their biological parents in a common household.What if the couple is infertile and they both know that before they get married? What if they don't want to have children in the first place? Not everyone who gets married wants a child, and not everyone accidentally becomes pregnant. A healthy marriage culture encourages adults to stay at home and care for their many children as in the olden days and for the children to perhaps be raised and nurtured by violent alcoholics who rape them. 

That is also what a sound law of marriage does. Although it is still a radical position without much purchase in public opinion, one increasingly hears the opinion that government should get out of the marriage business: Let individuals make whatever contracts they want, and receive the blessing of whatever church agrees to give it, but confine the government’s role to enforcing contracts. This policy is not so much unwise as it is impossible. The government cannot simply declare itself uninterested in the welfare of children. Nor can it leave it to prearranged contract to determine who will have responsibility for raising children. (It’s not as though people can be expected to work out potential custody arrangements every time they have sex; and any such contracts would look disturbingly like provisions for ownership of a commodity.) A married couple usually has sex with one other person and whether one is gay or not, the divorce and custody issues are just as difficult. As much as the author is optimistic, he believes that the government truly doesn't take children to be commodities. However, they so seem to be. The argument for why governments cannot just enforce contracts and get the hell out of the couple's business has not even been justified. 

When a marriage involving children breaks down, or a marriage culture weakens, government has to get more involved, not less. Courts may well end up deciding on which days of the month each parent will see a child. We have already gone some distance in separating marriage and state, in a sense: The law no longer ties rights and responsibilities over children to marriage, does little to support a marriage culture, and in some ways subsidizes non-marriage. In consequence government must involve itself more directly in caring for children than it did under the old marriage regime — with worse results. I don't understand this paragraph at all. And as a sidenote, it's quite easy to not listen to a court decision and not be punished for it when it comes to how often a parent can see his/her child. (Just out of personal experience)

Thoughtful proponents of same-sex marriage raise three objections to this conception of marriage. The first is that law and society have always let infertile couples marry; why not treat same-sex couples the same way? The question can be tackled philosophically or practically. The philosophical answer boils down to the observation that it is mating that gives marriage its orientation toward children. An infertile couple can mate even if it cannot procreate. Two men or two women literally cannot mate. Excuse me? Putting a penis in an asshole or a finger in a vagina counts as much as putting an infertile penis in an infertile vagina. And we're not even getting into the other definitions of what is considered sex.To put it another way: A child fulfills the marital relationship by revealing what it is, a complete union, including a biological union. Therefore, a man and a woman who do not have a child are not a complete union. This all just seems like opinion to me. WHERE'S THE EVIDENCE? A man and a woman who unite biologically may or may not have children depending on factors beyond their control; a same-sex couple cannot thus unite. WHAT. THE. FUCK. seriously? I'm sorry, but...seriously?! The logic is not flawed, it's been tortured and then gangraped and then tortured again, put vinegar in the wounds, mutilated, murdered, and then gangraped again. 

The practical problems with using fertility as a criterion for marriage should be obvious. Some couples that believe themselves to be infertile (or even intend not to have children) end up having children. And then there are those who don't. Or those who adopt (who can have children but choose not to.)Government could not filter out those marriage applicants who are certain not to be able to have children without extreme intrusiveness. Note that we do not generally expect the eligibility criteria and purposes of marriage to exhibit a rigorous fitness in other respects. This is true about those aspects of marriage about which proponents and opponents of same-sex marriage alike agree. Nobody believes that people should have to persuade the government that they really are capable of a deep emotional union or that they are likely to stick around to take care of an ill partner before getting legally married, because that would be absurd. No, actually it wouldn't be. In fact, it would be quite sensible. Have you seen the divorce rates in this country lately? Nobody would try to devise a test to bar couples with no intention of practicing sexual exclusivity from getting married. It's been done before. Adultery is no longer a crime, but was once, wasn't it? It does not follow that marriage is therefore pointless or has nothing to do with monogamy, emotional union, or caregiving. (Those are indeed goods that marriage advances; but if sex did not make children, they would not be a reason to have the institution of marriage.) (Besides the monogamy, emotional union, caregiving, and...financial benefits?)
The second objection proponents of same-sex marriage raise is that the idea that marriage is importantly linked to procreation is outdated. In our law and culture, the ties between sex, marriage, and child-rearing have been getting weaker thanks to contraception, divorce and remarriage, artificial reproduction, and the rise of single motherhood. Yet those ties still exist. Pregnancy still prompts some couples to get married. People are more likely to ask nosy questions about whether and when children are coming to couples that have gotten married. Not true. And we have not at all outgrown the need to channel adult sexual behavior in ways conducive to the well-being of children: The rising percentage of children who are not being raised by their parents, and the negative outcomes associated with this trend, suggest that this need is as urgent as ever.Evidence? Our culture already lays too much stress on marriage as an emotional union of adults and too little on it as the right environment for children. If the emotional union between parents were better, perhaps that would increase the chance for the right environment for children. Of course correlation does not imply causation, but nevertheless, it wouldn't hurt. Same-sex marriage would not only sever the tie between marriage and procreation; it would, at least in our present cultural circumstances, place the law behind the proposition that believing that tie should exist is bigoted. The tie is not bigoted and those who don't necessarily agree with the tie don't necessarily believe it's bigoted. Don't just throw words like that out there. 

The third objection is that it is unfair to same-sex couples to tie marriage to procreation, as the traditional conception of marriage does. Harm, if any, to the feelings of same-sex couples is unintentional: Marriage, and its tie to procreation, did not arise as a way of slighting them. (In the tradition we are defending, the conviction that marriage is the union of a man and a woman is logically prior to any judgment about the morality of homosexual relationships.)

And does marriage really need to be redefined? The legal “benefits” of marriage — such as the right to pay extra taxes, and to go through a legal process to sever the relationship? — are overstated. Almost all the benefits that the law still grants could easily be extended to unmarried couples, including same-sex couples, without redefining marriage. Ah yes, but are they? The campaign for same-sex marriage is primarily motivated by one specific benefit: the symbolic statement by the government that committed same-sex relationships are equivalent to marriages. But with respect to the purposes of marriages, they’re not equivalent; and so this psychic benefit cannot be granted without telling a lie about what marriage is and why a society and legal system should recognize and support it. And throughout this whole article, he has not mentioned religion once. This would be the article to do so, for marriage has mostly to do with religion. 

Same-sex marriage is often likened to interracial marriage, which the law once proscribed. But the reason governments refused to recognize (and even criminalized) interracial marriages was not that they did not believe that such marriages were possible; it is that they wanted to discourage them from happening, in the interests of white supremacy. Sexual complementarity is a legitimate condition of marriage because of the institution’s orientation toward children; racial homogeneity has nothing to do with that orientation.Actually, it does, depending on your argument of what harms what. Laws against interracial marriage thus violated the right to form an actual marriage in a way that laws defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman do not violate it. The argument about what the equal rights of all citizens entail for marriage laws turns, in other words, on what marriage is. If marriage just is by its nature oriented toward procreation, the refusal to redefine it to accommodate same-sex partners unjustly discriminates against them no more than the military does against the flat-footed.

Same-sex marriage would introduce a new, less justifiable distinction into the law. This new version of marriage would exclude pairs of people who qualify for it in every way except for their lack of a sexual relationship. Elderly brothers who take care of each other; two friends who share a house and bills and even help raise a child after one loses a spouse: Why shouldn’t their relationships, too, be recognized by the government? The second actually would be recognized by the government. The traditional conception of marriage holds that however valuable those relationships may be, the fact that they are not oriented toward procreation makes them non-marital. (Note that this is true even if those relationships involve caring for children: We do not treat a grandmother and widowed daughter raising a child together as married because their relationship is not part of an institution oriented toward procreation.) On what possible basis can the revisionists’ conception of marriage justify discriminating against couples simply because they do not have sex? There's this word that the author seems to forget when it comes to marriages. Many people who actually marry don't just do it for the stability, or for the financial benefits, or for the child-bearing. They do it forlove. None of those examples (except perhaps the second) have a romantic relationship in them. And if anything, that is what is the basis of a marriage. 
How, for that matter, can it justify discriminating against groups of more than two involved in overlapping sexual relationships? The argument that same-sex marriage cannot be justified without also, in principle, justifying polygamy and polyamory infuriates many advocates of the former. I cannot see why one cannot justify polygamy and polyamory. There is, however, no good answer to the charge; and the arguments and especially the rhetoric of same-sex marriage proponents clearly apply with equal force to polygamy and polyamory. How does it affect your marriage if two women decide to wed? goes the question from same-sex marriage advocates; you don’t have to enter a same-sex union yourself. They might just as accurately be told that they would still be free to have two-person marriages if other people wed in groups. And they would. Point in case?

We cannot say with any confidence that legal recognition of same-sex marriage would cause infidelity or illegitimacy to increase; we can say that it would make the countervailing norms, and the public policy of marriage itself, incoherent. The symbolic message of inclusion for same-sex couples — in an institution that makes no sense for them — would be coupled with another message: that marriage is about the desires of adults rather than the interests of children. Marriage is about the desires of adults rather than the interests of children!

It may be that the conventional wisdom is correct, and legal recognition of same-sex marriage really is our inevitable future. Perhaps it will even become an unquestioned policy and all who resisted it will be universally seen as bigots. We doubt it, but cannot exclude the possibility. If our understanding of marriage changes in this way, so much the worse for the future. Boo hoo. 

The logic fails and the evidence is nonexistent. I like my argument the best better.

Monday, September 20, 2010

purple in the morning, blue in the afternoon, orange in the evening (I)

it never ends
eye dilations eye bursting through the colour
looking like gutted rabbits on the plate of a giant
don't look don't look don't look
behind just run
with breath too stagnant in the bottom of lungs
fingers twitch twitch twitching peeling skin off bone
teeth rotted with wheel grinding and white crystals that
shoot through a piece of paper green like bullets from a gun
just don't look behind you think of the
chaching
and the blood trickling down your nose

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Sunday, September 19, 2010

between the click of the light and the start of the dream (III)

between the click of the light and the start of the dream
the electrocution we undergo is astounding
the spark of energy coursing through our veins
crackling in our bones
bending our spines and tongues so far
the marrow turns to ash
the blood boils over our seams
and the threads that puppet our eyelids
start to dance
as we close our pandora's box of waking consciousness
and descend into the layers of morpheus' realm...

Thursday, September 9, 2010

vi: pauline

i guess that's the point of it all
my mama said when she found out i was pregnant
body against body, fluid intertwining with fluid
what else would you expect
than a tomato-red, dripping baby with the voice of a banshee

it's god's will, you know
my papa told me when i came home with bruises on my collarbones
and he came in with a bottle of jack and a pair of dirty diapers
what else would you expect
from a trash, goodfornothing girl like me

i always knew this would happen
my brother said under his voice when he was driving us home
on I-10 after he had just gotten out of state penitentiary
what else would you expect
than a few busted heads with pools of blood collecting near the gutters

why did you let him do this to me
my daughter asked me, her eyes bigger than our fake chinese plates
her teddy bear almost dismembered from how tightly he was being held
what else would you expect
from a man whose twisted, broken eyes could not focus on nothing else except innocence

now here we are, and here we are
on a rickety old bed
that hasn't seen the warmth of flesh for more than a year
what else would you expect
what else could you accept

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argos

they want to make buttons out of my bones
buttons to place on the ashes of the clothes
this sunken city wears
buttons to keep the denial and hope in
guarded by a wall of concrete so thick and so high
even mama wouldn't be able to tear it down

they want to make dreams out of my skin
dreams to forget the reality that evelops
these worn men and women
dreams that will last for a lifetime
and when we wake up, we will already be
in Lucifer's golden kingdom

they want to make blood out of my lips
blood that will be a reminder of the pain
these babies felt in the wombs of their mothers
blood that will run down the crooked streets
flood everyone's body with tingling sensations of shock
to jolt us into a never-ending limbo

they want to make wreaths out of my hair
wreaths that will creep into the coffins of the living
those so-called living creatures with spiderwebs in their eyes
wreaths that will break open the darkness of this city
with their tendrils of weeds and thorns cracking this hard earth
to bury the fear deep, deep, deep

they want to make sunlight out of my eyes
sunlight that permeates the clouds of flies
those choking, hackneyed monsters
sunlight that will pulverize the sky and ground
and wake us from the horror that we have wrapped ourselves in
to protect ourselves from the truth of our sins.

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