Monthly Archives: November 2011

huddled in the stormfront

the day begins with planes flying from west to east
rather than east to west
the day begins with the two of feathers
telling me to open the closed off doors of communication
the day begins
half an hour
before my alarm goes off
my eyes clear
my body strong
the day begins
with cool washcloth offerings
and a digital version of a sunset
that melted down golder, smoother
in real life
the day began before that
sometime after midnight
shaken into waking by our doorbell
and my refusal to lift myself out of healingsleep
in tank top and underwear
knowing
if someone really needs to get in
there is always the secret key in the secret place
moments later the sound of rachels footsteps
ascending
let us begin

_______

overheard on the shuttlebus
while jamaal and i laugh
about how over it we are
which, so far, has turned out to be the most effective approach yet:
this bus is starting to develop and aroma of its own

_______

small crowd of five tents
semi-circled near the library entrance
huddled in the stormfront under gray sky
plus a table of food and fliers
what a sight such as this can do to helium the heart

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allie’s accurate breakdon of some sandra dollerisms
(weird is good
strange is better
broken is best)
and then sandra herself
iluminating
just as the end-of-the-quarter hope
begins to show

_______

dear LAPD,
biohazard suits,
really!?
detaining 200 arrestees in a secret location,
really.
limiting access to the press
i’ve heard that one before
cherry pickers to pluck protestors from trees
LA, we are with you
charlottesville, we are with you

_______

the smell of your room/you/vetiver
on handboud layered paper
who needs dinner
when i can feast
on this

_______

from a speaker on an un/occupy oakland channel:
if one of us are taken away by the police
two of us will step forward
if one of us are hurt
five will step forward
if one of us killed
thousands will step forward
a kind of improv dance image
of the healing process
humans as blood cells
rushing to the scene

_______

phrase overheard on the radio, 10:56 pm:
beleauguered leader

_______

i don’t know how i ended up here
but i am amazed

_______

the intro calls the collection of letters (over 40 years
about one, sometimes more, sent per week)
between lorine neidecker and louis zukofsky
even after all those poems
even after that abortion
even after that flooded cabin on black hawk island
is the largest collection of work
of either of them
to date
and that
is what i have been talking about
all along

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surfing the waves of the afterlife

awake and crawling out the other side of the fevertunnel
i spend the day climbing up towards surface
and looking into the faces of everyone i walk past
how fever can cast a new light
how softness surrounds

_______

dear san diego conservative/military presence,
even though i rarely see you face-to-face
i hold you responsible anyway
for sucking the magic (if there ever was any) out of this city
i hold you responsible for endless white stucco strip malls and the parking lots that flank them
for the meager five profiles on ok cupid that appear when searching with the keyword ‘queer’
i hold you responsible for the layers of a sense of failure i am fielding
for how i have been killed off in layers and ache
for the self i was
(this city clouding the fact that i am still that self)
oh, there is wonder too,
like the lights on university after dipping down the canyon hill and rising back up again
like how the clouds muffling sun today sealed the gap between my body and the air around it – seamless
like spanish on the sidewalk, weaving through farmers market stalls, layering over itself at morely field birthday gatherings
like that suspension bridge we walked across town to once

_______

thank you, maggie nelson
for writing bluets
because if a book can be a home on the blue-lit shuttle ride south
than today this is mine
and i wrap its shawl/blanket words around me
and sometimes i think i wrote them myself
and sometimes home is not geography
but a paragraph
a page
a sentence that says everything i have ever been trying to say

_______

onions
carrots
snap peas
purple cabbage
bok choy
crimini mushrooms
garlic
sauteing in olive oil in silver soup pot when i hear
a loud pop
what is worse
than the smooth baby rat body snapped
in the snare of the trap is the fact
that i cannot bring myself to carry it out
for a proper burial

_______

liz texts: you surviving?
i respond: no! the lethal combination of san diego and grad school have killed me dead. i’m sure you’ll be too overcome with finals to attend the memorial gathering, but you are warmly and cordially invited anyway.
liz: oh no, i am sorry! maybe i will drag your corpse into the sea and hope for a revival.
me: i’ll see you surfing the waves of the afterlife.

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branch as in stick

last night’s desert moon hung low over the horizon
plus all those joshua trees
and my first mesa
still resonating

_______

throat coat and ‘gypsy’ cold care
steeped and sipped
three times

_______

water-walking
in the high 70’s sunny
i hello the mail carrier
sidestep the revving engine
drop silver coins in the slot

_______

report from portland:
(reportland
re: portland)
hand-made dedication plaques plus
new seasons selling “mossy branches” for six bucks a branch
branch as in stick

_______

texas street
in north park san diego versus
24th and bryant
in the mission
graffiti wins
corner stores win
10 minute walk to the bart wins
san diego
stupefied smile on your suburban face
down on the whitewashed cement
for the count

_______

garden-plucked chard (bright lights variety)
sauted with slivers of sweet pepper
leek
garden garlic
and onion
lia’s kraut on the side
eggs scrambled on top

_______

dear universe
let this sickness move through
with ease

_______

tamarillo transported from tbirds bay back yard
sliced open i spoonscoop
tomato meets passionfruit
gratitude that there are fruits/plants
i have not yet eaten

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my first mesa

this is the day i eat the three most flavorless french fries i’ve ever tasted
on the fertilized grass hillside
flanking the drive through
of the busiest in n out burger
i’ve ever seen
the day when the i-5 floods
in either direction
strings of cars caravaning
from one version of home to another

this is the day
i see the desert for the first time
and how perfect it is that we went out of the way
to avoid the i-5 traffic
only to pass through the wind turbine forests and land here
on this strip of 395 at sunset
gnarled joshua trees
raising limbs towards
a blue which seems a negative of the pink and as deepthick as the ocean
not quite a shadow but somehow appearing in the same sky
it’s beyond me
the rules for sundown out here
where i roll past my first mesa
something like a pink floyd remix
or mc hammer
or metallica’s master of puppets
on the soundtrack
the moon a paper punch scrap
pasted to glassblue

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i don’t trust this vitamin

tonight i yoga’d
instead of detailing
and tomorrow
the road as poem

but something must at least be said for the pre-sunset light
in this city
pulling green from the insides of leaves to their surface
laying itself over stark white stucco
a pink-gold of sheer fabric

something must be said for sparky
how i am sending my brightest wishes

something must be said for dumping the compost
and turning it
in the grass-wet backyard
9am
while the air low to the ground is still cool
how everything shines under its coat of water
how mornings in the backyard feel the most like farming
how high the green garlic shoots reach

something  must also be said for
the bulk jar of gummy vitamins
and how i shake my head every time i eat one
saying i don’t trust this vitamin
but i chew it down to its last shred of non-vitamin-tasting fruit-sweetness anyway

and again, something else must also be said for
talking about nightwood
and the potential metaphor of night in that novel
to refer to gender
not as a binary
but a spectrum
from straight to queer

something must also be said for tahrir square
again and again
something must be said
of tahrir square

(please note:
anticipated absence from the details
while i head north and back for the extended weekend holiday
with my fellow star-scribbled friend
who just crossed the bridge
over to 36)

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cairo, we are with you

janina
keeping my feet warm
from the other side of the bridge of worlds
her hand-knit slippers
snug on my feet

_______

taking a whole lane while riding my bike down university = badass
all of the above while wearing a purple jeanskirt = super badass

_______

slice of blue along the horizon
one reason
to walk from one end of campus to the other
more often

_______

i’m writing this because i told myself i have to
can you tell?

_______

to tahrir square re-occupied
where we have skull fractures, nerve damage from too tight cuffs, vomitting/dry heaves/asthma attacks requiring hospital visits from pepper spray at close range, bruised torsos and limbs
this round, cairo has 24 deaths
cairo, we are with you
pittsburgh, we are with you
toronto, we are with you
anchorage, we are with you
davis, we are with you
edmonton, we are with you
south africa ( johannesburg, cape town, durban, grahamstown), we are with you
denver, we are with you
atlanta, we are with you
maui, we are with you
hong kong, we are with you
(this list is long
but my time is short
this is a beginning)

 

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a break in time

dear honduras,
five out of this year’s (accounted for) 23
were killed in your country
why?

dear fire,
ever since news of shelly hilliard’s torso
charred and left on the side of the interstate
i cannot help but consider your specific kind of cruelty

dear jessica rollon,
sometime during the day/night i turned thirty six
you stopped breathing
not that you didn’t want to
but that someone/others
didn’t want you to
was it while i pedaled up that san diego canyon hill
lined with eucalyptus
so steep i felt knives in my post-sick lungs/throat?
was it while i listened to the bagpipes in balboa park
(how breath is held inside the bag itself)
was it during the last of the pipe organ concert
where i refused to stand for the national anthem
just the same way i refuse to support any press that refers to you
as the wrong gender
(how one can be killed twice
first in the physical
and then by word)
was it as i rode the zoo train around in a mini circle
thinking how beautiful it was
that several 60+ year olds were riding with me
not even because they had grandkids in tow
was it as i held my breath while we choo-chooed through the dark tunnel
towards light on the other side
was it as my chest rose/fell
under balboa park’s moreton bay fig tree
its 145 foot canopy sprawling over
my grass-lounged body
was it as i blew the single candle in the pumpkin cake
out
i don’t remember what i wished for
but if i could re-make that moment
the wish
would be breath
re-entering your lungs
a snap of whatever was wrapped around your neck
a break in time for you to run unharmed through

in observance of international transgender day of remembrance

(the information below is intended as a memorial
but may be triggering
please do what you need
to take care of yourself)

——–
Idania Roberta Sevilla Raudales
Location: Comayaguela City, Honduras
Cause of Death: slit throat
Date of Death: November 29, 2010
Idania was 58 years old.
Source: http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/02/01/six-trans-women-killed-in-honduras-in-two-months/

_______________________________________________________

Luisa Alvarado Hernández
Location: Comayagüela City, Honduras
Cause of Death: Stoned, beaten and burned
Date of Death: December 22, 2010
Luisa was 23 years old.
Source: http://hondurashumanrights.wordpress.com/2011/01/11/three-murders-in-two-weeks-protest-the-killings-of-lgbti-people-in-honduras/

_______________________________________________________

Lady Óscar Martínez Salgado
Location: Tegucigalpa, Honduras
Cause of Death: Burned and stabbed
Date of Death: December 22, 2010
Oscar was 43 years old.
Source: http://hondurashumanrights.wordpress.com/2011/01/11/three-murders-in-two-weeks-protest-the-killings-of-lgbti-people-in-honduras/

_______________________________________________________

Reana ‘Cheo’ Bustamente
Location: Tegucigalpa, Honduras
Cause of Death: Multiple stab wounds to the chest
Date of Death: January 2, 2011
No age reported
Source: http://hondurashumanrights.wordpress.com/2011/01/11/three-murders-in-two-weeks-protest-the-killings-of-lgbti-people-in-honduras/

_______________________________________________________

Génesis Briget Makaligton
Location: Comayagüela City, Honduras
Cause of Death: Strangulation
Date of Death: January 7, 2011
Génesis was approximately 23-27 years old.
Source: http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/02/01/six-trans-women-killed-in-honduras-in-two-months/

_______________________________________________________

Krissy Bates
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Cause of Death: Stabbed
Date of Death: January 10, 2011
Krissy was 45 years old.
Source: http://blogs.citypages.com/blotter/2011/01/chrissie_bates_complex_homicidal_violence.php

_______________________________________________________

Fergie Alice Ferg
Location: San Pedro Sula, Honduras
Cause of Death: Shot multiple times in the head and chest
Date of Death: January 18, 2011
No age reported.
Source: http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/02/01/six-trans-women-killed-in-honduras-in-two-months/

_______________________________________________________

Tyra Trent
Location: Baltimore, Maryland
Cause of Death: Strangled
Date of Death: February 19, 2011
Tyra was 25 years old.
Source: http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2011/02/23/transgender-woman-found-dead-in-vacant-home/

_______________________________________________________

Priscila Brandão
Location: Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Cause of Death: shot in the head
Date of Death: March 2, 2011
Priscila was 22 years old.
Source: http://www.allout.org/actions/priscila/taf

_______________________________________________________

Marcal Camero Tye
Location: Forrest City, Arkansas
Cause of Death: Shot and dragged
Date of Death: March 8, 2011
Marcal was 25 years old.
Source: http://www.wreg.com/news/wreg-marcal-murder,0,7869905.story

_______________________________________________________

Shakira Harahap
Location: Taman Lawang, Jakarta, Indonesia
Cause of Death: shot
Date of Death: March 10, 2011
Shakira was 28 years old.
Source:http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/home/activists-urge-police-to-pursue-transvestite-killing/428416

_______________________________________________________

Miss Nate Nate (or Née) Eugene Davis
Location: Houston, Texas
Cause of Death: shot
Date of Death: June 13, 2011
Née was 44 years old.
Source: http://www.dallasvoice.com/trans-person-murdered-houston-1079771.html

_______________________________________________________

Lashai Mclean
Location: Washington, D.C.
Cause of Death: Shot
Date of Death: July 20, 2011
Lashai was 23 years old.
Source: http://www.metroweekly.com/news/?ak=6435

_______________________________________________________

Didem
Location: Findikzade, Istanbul
Cause of Death: Slit throat
Date of Death: July 31, 2011
Didem was 26 years old.
Source: http://www.tgeu.org/Didem_murdered_in_Istanbul

_______________________________________________________

Camila Guzman
Location: New York, New York
Cause of Death: Stabbed several times in the back and neck.
Date of Death: August 1, 2011
Camila was 38 years old.
Source: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/manhattan/new_device_helps_id_murdered_transgender_5dgiYYMtsmcZTgBmbREpmL#ixzz1U9843Dpy

_______________________________________________________

Gaby
Location: Jalisco, Mexico
Cause of Death: Beaten and burned.
Date of Death: August 6, 2011
No age has been reported.
Source:
http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=es&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.corresponsalesclave.org%2F2011%2F08%2F%25C2%25BFcontra-quien-hay-que-luchar-%25C2%25BFquien-es-el-asesino.html

_______________________________________________________

unidentified male dressed in women’s clothes
Location: Paris, France
Cause of Death: Stabbed
Date of Death: August 24, 2011
She is estimated to be about 30 years old.
Source: http://www.leparisien.fr/paris-75/paris-un-travesti-tue-a-coups-de-couteau-24-08-2011-1577470.php

_______________________________________________________

Gaurav Gopalan
Location: Washington, D.C.
Cause of Death: subarachnoid hemorrhage due to blunt-impact head trauma
Date of Death: September 10, 2011
Gaurav was 35 years old.
Source: http://metroweekly.com/news/?ak=6584

_______________________________________________________

Ramazan Çetin
Location: Gaziantep, Turkey
Cause of Death: Shot to death by her brother.
Date of Death: October 6, 2011
She was 24 years old.
Note: The transwoman had an accident and was seeking treatment at the local hospital.
Her brother found out about the accident and went to the hospital and shot her to death
in front of witnesses. Upon leaving the hospital he calmly said to the police,
“I killed my brother as he was a transvestite. I cleaned my honour!”
Source: http://www.advocate.com/Crime/Trans_Woman_Murdered_By_Brother

_______________________________________________________

Shelley Hilliard
Location: Detroit, Michigan
Cause of Death: murdered, her body was decapitated and dismembered then burned.
Date of Death: October 23, 2011
Shelley was 19 years old.
Note: Her mother had to identify her torso at the medical examiner’s office on November 10, 2011.
Source: http://tinyurl.com/7dlqula
and http://tinyurl.com/6nodxyt and http://tinyurl.com/7s726rj

_______________________________________________________

Jessica Rollon
Location: Bergamo, Italy
Cause of Death: Strangled
Date of Death: October 30, 2011
Jessica was 32 years old.
Note: Her body had been dumped on the side of the road and was not discovered for 3 days.
As with most cases,the local news continues to disrespect her by using male pronouns and a male name.
Source: http://tinyurl.com/7r6ez8g

_______________________________________________________

Astrid Carolina López Cruz
Location: Madrid, Spain
Cause of Death: Beaten and stabbed
Date of Death: November 4, 2011
Astrid was 30 years old.
Source: http://www.abc.es/20111104/madrid/abcp-tumba-viva-jardin-casa-20111104.html

_______________________________________________________

Chassity Nathan Vickers
Location: Hollywood, California
Cause of Death: Gunshot wound to the chest
Date of Death: November 17, 2011
Chassity was 32 years old.
Source:http://blogs.laweekly.com/informer/2011/11/cassidy_nathan_vickers_transgender_murder_hollywood_weho.php

_______

information above from http://www.transgenderdor.org/

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