9.12.2014

Pierced Ears

So let me get this straight:

You paid them to put permanent holes in my ears
and comforted yourself with the knowledge
that I was too unconscious to remember the pain
too young to say no
and too small to fight back.

You paid them to put holes in my ears
before I even had hair on my head
because people thought I was your son,
and you read that as a threat.
Apparently looking like a boy meant being too powerful
and you had to put me back in my place.
It begs the question, of why a pink dress and a bow in my hair
wouldn't have sufficed.
No, you had to teach me young
that being a girl
meant there was damage to be done here.

Actually, in a weird convoluted way,
I think I understand where you're coming from. What you're saying is,
I’m not a girl until I’ve been penetrated against my will
-- am I getting this right?
I’m not a girl until there’s a hole in me to show for it
I’m not a girl until I’ve said no in vain
-- or stayed silent all together, I mean, who listens to girls anyway?
I’m not a girl until there is dead weight stretching and exhausting and burdening my head to distract me from using it for other things – like, I don’t know, thinking?
I'm not a girl until someone has made decisions about my body on my behalf.

We both know it is not about the earrings.

It is about the outright refusal to acknowledge children as individuals rather than property.
It is about a fear of autonomy so intense that you were willing to mutilate me for it.
It is about the imposition of an identity upon a non-consenting party.
It is about the reduction of women to a series of holes:
keep these open and this one closed, listen don't speak,
and this one had better stay closed until you're married, young lady.
It is about categories and restrictions and dismissal and all the other wonderful things that come with having a vagina.
And it is about time I reclaimed my body.

So I am letting my earring holes close.
I know, they say at this point, the damage is permanent --
they say some wounds never heal -- but it's worth a shot.
I am bridging the gaps in me, in order to be closer to myself.
I am filling them with new soil, in which to plant flowers of my choosing
(choosing. what a nice word.)
I am healing my ears so I can hear myself, even when no one else will.
Mending the hole so that I can be whole.

And I know you were only teaching me what your mother taught you
and what her mother taught her, and so on,
in an endless chain of women in chains.
But if there is anything in any child worth protecting,
beauty is not it.
It is this,
it is this,
it is this.



9.05.2014

die hard

social life?
more like fractal loop
of circle after perverse circle
face after face
year after year
friend turned foe
caress turned vice grip
fingertips to my scalp
looking for something more to take
sure, take it
no no, it's okay
I don't need it, it's fine
just take it
get it off my hands

I should be used to this by now
I should have known better
I should have seen this coming
but trusting people is one of those
habits that die hard

8.29.2014

MRA

HOW DARE YOU NOT-SEE ME?
HOW DARE YOU THINK ABOUT ANYTHING THAT IS NOT-ME?
HOW DARE YOU HAVE PROBLEMS
CAUSED BY ME?
WHAT, AM I SUPPOSED TO TAKE
RESPONSIBILITY OR SOMETHING?

I WILL INVADE
EVERY CONVERSATION
YOU EVER HAVE
JUST TO REMIND YOU I'M HERE
I EXIST, I AM A MAN
(NOT A WOMAN)
AND YOU SHOULD BE
TALKING ABOUT
ME ME ME ME
ME ME ME ME
ME ME ME ME ME.

8.22.2014

Dear Monster (monologue)

[The scene begins with a young girl of about 9 or 10 walking into her bedroom and turning off the lights. She marches up to her bed, sits cross-legged on the end of it, and confidently addresses the closet door before her.]

I know you’re there, behind the closet door. And I know you were under my bed yesterday night. The night before that, you were waiting outside my window – waiting for me to close my eyes and fall asleep.
But I’m not going to, Mr Monster. I’m going to stay up because I have a bone to pick with you. Well… I don’t want to pick any real bones, but my aunty said that once: “I have a bone to pick with you.” And she said it when she was mad about something I did. So I guess we should pick some bones, too.

Are you listening? Here’s the problem, Mr Monster: my mommy and daddy said you aren’t real. I told them about you, and how you live in my room and watch me sleep. I told them about the noises you make and the way you hide in the shadows. Mommy said if you were real they would be able to see you. But they try to tell me Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy are real – and they try to tell me God is real – but I’ve never seen them. I told mommy that, and she laughed and said, ‘Well those aren’t monsters.’

Then my daddy said, ‘Real monsters hurt people.’ He told me that the people you see on the news who murder other people are monsters, and the old men who kidnap little girls are monsters, and tax collectors – now those are monsters! And then mommy and daddy started laughing.

Then I tried – I tried and tried and tried – [little girl starts crying] - to tell them you’re real! They believe in fairies and tax collectors and God… but they don’t believe me! They think I’m lying about you, Mr Monster! They said I’m too old for monsters and if I keep talking about you they’re going to take me to a therapist. They think I’m crazy!

So that’s the problem. [Little girl wipes her eyes and takes in a big gulp of air to calm herself down. Then, acting tough, she continues.]
You have to help me, Mr Monster. You have to show them you’re real. If real monsters hurt people, be a real monster. Show them I’m not crazy. Please make them believe in you. Make them believe me…

Okay, Mr Monster?

[After a long silence, the closet door begins to creak open on its own. The little girl’s tears are slowly replaced with a dark smile.]

END



8.15.2014

carphology

[as per Chiu K Ng's request] 

carphology noun \kär-ˈfäl-ə-jē\
an aimless semiconscious plucking at the bedclothes observed in conditions of exhaustion or stupor or in high fevers



i.
compulsion
to manifest mountains
of stitch and fray
anchored to white
not white like pure
white like abandoned potential


ii.
monotony enough
to pluck strings and anticipate
subliminal reverb in
sternum: hollow
musical, brittle, keratin

iii.
flesh-tone spades
itch and remove, or separate,
or put a hole in,
or acknowledge a pre-existing hole

iv.
excuse me --
if you don't mind me asking --
are you planting
or uprooting?