In thirty years he will have forgotten you, but the memory of him remains methylated in your DNA, and blood does not betray in a court of law. In thirty years that feeling will thaw and become raw when you see the likes of Brett Kavanaugh take the stand, only then will they understand the gravity of what holds us down as women and them up as men. As all the world took a stand against the man in the robe, our sisters were willing to throw their lives under the bus for us, and for the first time in history, even men took to the streets and contested for the girls who were molested, while Dr. Ford invested her reputation to speak the truth. You watched as the girl in you died and though you couldn’t revive her, you went on to become a survivor. The laughter of their leader added salt to the wounds of everyone who had been abused. The message was clear, speak and lose your dignity, whilst another man’s life was held in supreme honour and civility. Mothers held their daughters, as the ones in cages were spared the rage of those so-called victimized men, yet for the ones deemed savages there was another plan, because you must understand, in a country where no privileged white man is truly legal, speaking the truth can be lethal. So while we go on living like warriors with the past coded deep in our cell methylation, we mustn’t forget what that tells of this Nation, we must fight injustice as long as Brett sits on that throne, for though they may have sworn him in, we never condoned, because somewhere in our bodies lies a seed, and no matter how deep they try to bury it with violence, it comes back like a weed which they will never be able to silence.
Category Archives: Identity
My body is an ancient burial ground
It gets desecrated by someone else’s
idea of progress.
When you enter me, you stir the dead,
the anger of a century in red
pours out in tainted rivers,
the Red River,
where the missing ones were buried,
floods over and curses any attempt
I might make to love you.
Your heart gets haunted
by something unnamed,
too deep to be translated.
Your hands are the only evidence
that I exist beyond this.
You frack me without a thought
for what you take,
but what hurts most
is what you leave behind,
was once so sacred.
The sobs of Narcissus are buried in my chest like an endless blackness, the dark shadow which he never can capture as he lays enraptured by his gaze. I feel his heart on my heart as his flawless body rests on top of me, spent from the endless pursuit of penetration. He enters me, yet nothing ever enters him, in that sense he remains virginal, searching the lonely sea within me for his own reflection. His perfection is like an unbreakable glass mirror, where I remain shattered. I don’t want him to see how much I need him, how deeply enamoured I am by his every movement, and equally by his stillness when his eyes gaze off in the distance, unable to focus on any one person for too long. He blinks and the butterflies flutter. He cannot tell a single truth, for he knows not his true self, a God-like being annihilated in infancy. I want him to know that I will not leave him, even after he abandons me. I want him to find his true vision like an infinite mark of hope tattooed on his soul. I want him to know he is more than this body which forsakes him in his time of need, oh Narcissus, hear my eternal echo, see how I keep myself afloat when you drown in the massive ocean of these other worldly expectations. Can’t you see my ability to die and resurrect myself in spite of your fatal envy? You will hate inexplicably of this I am certain, and yet your hate is only an illusion of your real identity, which got lost in it’s own reflection, and never given the chance at self- expression, never given wings to fly, the unhatched egg of potential, which burns with all the force and passion of an atomic bomb. I drown myself. I do this daily, every time your voice becomes more distant, and yet I resurface again alone in the silence where our world’s lie forever separated.
When the fireworks sound like bombs dropping on this land and the shouts are like the screaming of our red skinned brethren being torn away from home, when 13,000 years get swept under the red and white carpet, we are banging on drums and linking up arms to say don’t forget we were here and we still exist. You can’t bandage these ancestral wounds. What you are doing to the others that came here from afar, we still carry that scar. They all have a place to seek refuge in our home and Native land, but where can we go to mend?
Who will protect us from our government? It’s a true testament of the Aboriginal spirit that this heart knows it’s own truth no matter how deep you try to bury it.
Before the glass shattered, it was already broken they say, true to the Zen principle of impermanence. I think of the day I first emerged from the taxi, taking your glass hand in mine, feeling the fragility of every molecule of crystal flowing in the summer light between our glass bodies as we held eachother. I recall the glass city, yet to be explored, shimmering with the beauty of ancient temples, mineral by mineral. I pay glass money to the mosaic man, whose eyes reflect in green visions from a childhood, still seen, on the surface of sand, surrounding the Pacific Ocean, where I shattered into sunlight, collecting broken bottles, which the water shaped to resemble lost gems of treasure. Where has that child gone, her body a mere memory held in cracked neurons, sustained there between the darkness and the stars? I am that bottle, I am that eye, fixated in green brilliance, over the radiance of these shattered encounters, from zygote grin to wrinkled skin. That day on the street, when the glass savior with blot on spoon, dissolving into liquid, injecting through syringe into glass vein through semen, into ovum, the opium of my fluid existence. I hear chimes ring as the wind smashes them against the window, echoing across this wild , wintry country, the songs he sang before my time of fiery emergence. I am that bottle, always accompanying me, in the broken luminescence between light and shadow. I tread carefully amid two contradicting forces, the one with glass breasts and the one with glass phallus, anima and animus, one jagged splinter, ever forging toward the mercurial, toward the mesenchyme of osteoblast and hyaline, ever regenerating new bones, new placenta, new spearhead toward multicellular matrix fold of glass rose, glass wine, glass romance, capable of falling from the balcony where my glassy infatuation lies, already a hazard to the lovers who pass by barefoot and careless tongued. Your countenance glistens, not with the warmth of orbital, but that of ice, incapable of deliquescing. Shatter me a million times, I am already broken, broken like a blister on the lips, where we kiss away the cancerous rays of ultraviolence. Don’t tell me the circle of vibrational circumference is always gravitating further away, because if you say this, we might need to stay, held down by the force of the world, which is forever fated to break.
You are born in ethereal light, funereal flow through vessel of heart, where room holds caskets, bassinets, tourniquets, places to sleep, to dream, to waken. On the day of your departure from veins, warmth of crimson, rush of celebration, permeates receptor cells, life the mournful fall, death the joyful rise, pulling coins from your eyes, toll for the boatman, an atheist bent on sinking, cargo of karmic, a vessicle of rebirth, bursting forth, dissolving the old self and its former memories, dreams, hopes, and procreation. Reversal of ego, the fluidity of self. They give you a name, a place, a face, a position between two poles, a selective offering of chromosomes, and then they take it all away, leave you as a blank slate, you the great author, illiterate, inarticulate, mouthing desires, forming fears. Before you get here you are complete, experience erases data-
control, alt delete.
The missing and murdered indigenous women all gathered together at the lost city of Atlantis.
“No one believes we are real,” said one to the other, “they will never try to find us here.”
“If they never believe then we are free. If they start to remember is when we have to worry.” Said another.
“Yes the great spirit has made an ocean of oblivion and in all their crossings they forget..
They think their cities are real and ours is a myth.”
“Yes.” spoke the chief.
“We are safe here.”
They are distracted by the stars. The stars that died centuries ago.
The apocalypse has happened already. They just don’t know it yet.
They are all dancing together in a Matrix of dreams.
They wake up with new scars and wonder how those wounds ever healed.
“Sometimes they forget to hurt when we touch them,” spoke the child of agile deer, “and they mistake this pain for pleasure.”
The turtle will rise once more. When the time is right.
“The time is close,” spoke the hungry hawk girl. I see rust over the towers of progress, it stains their rivers and kills their fish. The white men in their polished houses laugh louder now. They laugh with terrorist eyes. And all the world is quiet in disbelief.
We are safe for now, but it won’t last. This time when they come dressed as brothers we will know the truth in that horse’s eyes.
We won’t drink the fire.
We won’t accept their dirty blankets.
We know how to keep warm. We are the keepers of the fire. We must never forget who we are, even if they have. They have all fallen asleep. When the sun rises it will be too late.
“It has already come to be,” spoke the ominous owl. It has already been written. They will burn the treaties. There is no honour in sickly pacts. They are a lost tribe.
“We have already been found what is there to search for now?” The sad squaw pleaded.
We must find ourselves here. We must honour our mother and father and give our respects to our grandfathers. One day all our relations will come together and they will lose their blindness.
Only when they have regained this vision can we be one again.
“One tribe under one sky” spoke the eager eagle.
So it is has been spoken.
They passed the peace pipe from hand to hand as they gathered around the roaring fire and danced.
You could hear the echo of their drums in the lost world where the rhythm of life was mute, their voices carried in the cries of the wild.
The forgotten ones were there and they remembered. Some of them had wolf eyes that lit a path through the dark.
You could never go hungry if you followed them.
But the eyes of the others were a deep abyss surrounding an ancient island, where they held a sacred vigil in honour of our fallen sisters
A voice is an echo on the shores of a river, cry of the loon. It is a new moon, a full moon, followed by the long snows moon. Ice encapsulates our memories as we tread the surface of a deep forgetting. To remember is to drown. My heart lives in this perpetual spring, melting into currents that violate the very rhythm of this cold season.
I awake to my breath in a ghostly cloud above my head.
This white clarity blinds the city.
Unable to rest, unable to dream.
He said our people, the Anishinaabe were possibly the lost citizens of Atlantis, true Atlanteans crossing the Atlantic. Thousands of years ago the Mediterranean was more like a lake and less like an ocean. The land mass of Atlantis formed a bridge from North America to Athens Greece. My kin, the Algonquins migrated to the ancient city and throughout parts of Europe, including Britain and the East. Is it possible the whites were decendants of us? Is it possible an old seed buried deep split open and released a very ancient desire to reclaim itself? He speaks of Sakimay as a place where our people originated. This was the land of my ancestors. He speaks of the seven fires prophecy and the crystal energy our people harnessed, which led to their own downfall, the sinking of our island, the melting of the glaciers, the light that flooded in like razors on our skin and stained us with the red ink of Indians. The turtle island that sank and swam down again, lost in the reaches of time. Oh Turtle, teach us of the truth sewn in hand with the ilk of our ancient medicine, until then we are lost like a city under the sea.
What is it I want to tell you? That this red throb is nothing, that this air can perpetuate without your breath, either inhale or exhale. That you exist in a swirl of random chaos like a flowing current of fierce rhythm that pulls you further down into the black miasma, or the blood stained sky. That there is no you and I. No nothing there where honey flows from crafty hands of chemosynthetic mind, longing for something, untouchable, unnameable, blind. Creating energy out of dark, when there is absence of sun light. That you are a rare night blossom, whose jasmine scent permeates all it touches with the potential of hope, of meaning, of a calm receding, where all life draws in it’s chaotic tides, and the swell of the sea inside releases me, frees me to love you in dreams. In dreams I am a stranger to myself, mirrors cast back reflections of lies. I close my eyes and draw in the darkness, emitting red beacons across the islands that separate us, blink and they dissolve, breathe and they depart. Her small hand heals my infinite ache. Her soft lips take me in, her searching tongue is without speech, in my mouth, where silence falls between two disarmed warriors, with their sharp thrusting. Your eyes are my shelter, they shine on this sorrow, penetrating where nothing else ever could. I leave you as quietly as I arrived, on a bitter winter night, bound for an arctic city, far from the magic and myth of your body with it’s warmth and it’s velvet reprieve. Returning again to the scrape of these lonely hours, the raw, the red, the crimson that throbs under this empty facade.
On a red Wednesday far away.
How far must one feel before it is real? The smell of vanilla reminds me of the creamy sky when the shape of a dinosaur floats by, reminding me then of old caves deeply unearthed, vapour clouds and the reach of Everest the cataclysm of continents drifting and shifting. I think of you who existed in the same world where eggs were fertilized. The time when our species made the great leap, structurally adapting our homologous bodies, from wings, to fins, to the epic void of these empty arms that never held you. We breathed the same air during the same era and yet it’s as if you are a character in a book that existed in a time I can only imagine. So it is that blue is synonymous with the mountain crest where the roaring Pacific faultline pulls like two magnetic forces, an entire separate continent into the arms of another, that time when cultures collide and adapt into common ancestors of different origins, and you smile that orbital smile as the ozone of your affections protects me from the radiation that threatens complete eradication of our species. I love you duplicitous flower, love you black tar highway whose deceit makes the sky appear deep.
In a world of shallow we know the cost of everything and the value of nothing-
no thing of worth from this accidental birth.
When I came here I laughed.
“It’s a box” I said,
a coffin, “I’ll take it.”
“A box of darkness, a gift.”
I was oblivious to the black scuttle bug living under my counter, it was oblivious to me also. The beetle had flown in from outside and thought he could occupy my place. I caught him trying to eat spilled sugar on the floor, then the black bastard was no more, swept up and flushed down into the waste waters.
For a moment I thought I might meet a similar fate..
voices, bumps in the night, a strange new world to inhabit, “take the belt” it said, “tie it around your door, be here evermore.”
Fuck you black bastard, no!
I won’t join you.
I burned sage through open windows, brushing away the decay,
and since that day, no more,
not often anyway,
only when the world of obligations gets tight around my neck do I think I might hang on a revolving door
between heaven and hell,
all the same.
A moth the size of my hand and white like a ghost flutters by my window,
I hear it’s wings flap up & down,
it’s fascination flickers
in the dark hollow where I drown.
kanakēs- For a brief moment
kaskēyimēw-she is lonesome for her
kaskina- break it off like a twig,
kācikēwin- something hidden.
kām¯wātan-It is quiet,
kāsēcihcē-wash your hands
kehcināho- make certain; be sure,
kinwēs- for a long time
kisin-it is cold.
The cold, brief certainty of silence.
rapidly flowing down stream, within.
The dim solitude of a broken boat.
Orphan child, at the edge of a forest, butterfly spirit, my hands fold inward to my heart, origami bird, snow star love, the great withholding of a dam, (state of vulnerablity,) before we make fire we must conquer the cold. Hidden in the dark, you grow lonesome for the light. Lonesome for her, you pine, lost in a forest of hurt. You wash your hands of her and the quiet kona falls heavy, river caller of the long snows moon, under ice in the woods of a perpetual winter…
love in a frozen state of longing,
crystal cure for obsidian heart.
We depart this way her and I, North and South in opposite directions, the wolf medicine stings at my heels, where the untouchable wound breaks open, all the world thunders in my heart.
Eons back in time,
when the long snows moon
before the ice age,
when firebird was risen,
in her orange deception,
I loved her volcano hot
raining white ash
We are ice people,
people of the falling snow,
white clay people
people of the clouds,
river people who hear and see,
fierce people with cold hands
and burned out hearts.
My blood origin is water but thicker than any oil. We were the people of the rapids, always following the tides in and out, as far as they could carry us in our birch bark boats. My grandfather the great Eagle spirit, who could be called on the wind at will, would carry the message of love across the rivers. My father the feathered dancer, always ran with the shadows, ran with the quick horses, wild across the prairie sky, far on towards the high hills, westward to the mountains. He caught the rapids in his veins, the eagle song rushed through him too fast, and I lost his tracks on the wind, it beat quick through his heart like that rabbit on the rails who cried from the weight of the train cutting across his leg. Love is mercurial this is what I chased. I danced with strangers who I hoped could show me deeper into what I felt behind my eyes, spirits passing by like clouds, dark over my head, deer child in storms, under cover of night, crying to the pleiades, snared beneath a thousand shooting stars, willing forward. This is who we are, these are my kin, wild on the hunt, with a scent in us that says love is of this, caught between these river rocks, these feathers, this sky. We follow that scent towards eachother like wild animals marking their journey home again, we will meet at the shore one day. My father visits me in dreams, speaks through the others, offers symbols to guide me closer to the turtle of truth who rises up towards the light. He told me of the 7 teachings, the sacred ways we follow, a path of shells. The beaver works hard to build up these twig towers of hydro electric power that allow us to connect. But the buffalo speaks of respect, tells me “we all have a gift, don’t waste yours, for if beaver did, he would grow long in the tooth and die,” and then we would have a great loss of life, a loss of light to lead us through these dark times.
Thank you for not loving me.
This is only my hand, hold on to it and it becomes no hand, no star, no worldly offering or other thing of meaning, such as a limb that is suspended near my body and lays meaningless without the desire to heal or mend this heart that gushes quietly and violently within…
I can get by on lesser organs than the sun, so vital to one’s existence.
One never knows what she misses, my mouth you press into wishes that blow off like pinwheels from branches and hit the earth spinning
Your leg twisted on air, as a dancer’s thigh gets by on physics alone, no chemistry can be found between the earth and sky.
There is no her.
An eye peers deep and dissecting into my soul.
What is there remains
He arrives at dawn when the others are gone, soaked in their debauchery, seen as a stain on the city, red speckled sea on the horizon , something we avoid on the morning walk to where we have to be, not where we want to be.
If I had my way I’d marry music, swan songs and oblong stories of our less than genteel history. Here in the North we are sorry, that’s our story, forced manners , like blisters on the fingers of the erhu player, but his country has communism, a cracked schism in the pavement, where I step to behold his wordless poems.
You cry out in the morning, no memory of the night before, no purpose, when your legs are sore from running against the current, can’t keep your head above the water long enough to see the shore.
Each morning you stumble down Portage on your way to nowhere, because that’s all we’ve got sister, that and the man with the blister, whose music makes us forget the pain, makes the suffering more tolerable, but what have we to compete with that?
A man holding a swan, caressing it’s long neck of eternity, you and I are lucky if we last ’til tomorrow but that beautiful sorrow can be heard like an ancient cry to the soul, and his case is full of potential coins for the demon that eats loons and moons from our past dreams. They float up merrily and coo at his fingers, see how he wraps them there, wings soft as straw, another corner conquered by something other than a drunken squaw.
What started as awe quickly turns to indifference and downright bitterness for birds. You start cawing and spitting venomous vitriol at anything that jingles. Where did they put my moon eh? Where’s that crescent thing they promised my people, no one remembers the buffalo, they killed him with the red skins, somewhere near wounded knee, but we got this Eastern melody flooding our streets with beauty.
I’m too ugly and my spirit is a deaf traveler. I’ll strangle that white-necked whore! Be nice to the hand that feeds you, it’s the hand that holds you down. They talk like indigenous means religious, it’s not a political stance, it’s birds in the hands of a dying democracy.
I’m the white and you’re the black on the chess board. They are counting on you poor pawn, they are singing for you sweet swan, together we can make a symphony that rises up towards the parliament in full plumed brilliance and lands on Harper’s lawn. Tell him to quit selling what doesn’t belong to him. Take off that Isis mask borrowed from the president and fuck terrorism when we’ve got heroism in our own hands..
dawn over oil spilled feathers, washing these sorrows pure again.
Birth is that crystallized moment when form emerging from dark is grown mistakenly into slavery, the brutality where we are hopelessly adopted into a pulsing world without love, delivered into the possessive hands of a stranger, encompassing us in liquid mercury, dissolving as we strive to gather cohesively, the quicksilver self that eludes us our entire lives into the fluid freedom of death’s sterling soul.