"The white fathers told us, "I think, therefore, I am" and the black mother within each of us – the poet – whispers in our dreams, I feel, therefore I can be free."- Audre Lorde

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


i find it funny that i see him everywhere i go at queens.
he's about 6 feet tall now, with a halo of curly curly strawberry blond hair.
he wasnt always that tall, but his hair was always that untamed. that's how i recognized him six years later. and 13 hours away from where we first met.
its funny that of all the people i would see from the Soo, its him. and its extra amusing that he doesn't even know or likely remember i exist.
It was grade nine. my first high school dance and my bestfriend christina had a huge crush on this "hot" foodball player, whose name i forget. she decided that she would only work up the courage to dance with him, if i volunteered to dance with his slightly less "hotter", red-afroed friend, who at the time was less than five feet tall. I decided i would, although it was very awkward.
i did what i thought was dirty dancing at the time.however years later i realized that shaking your arm ontop of your other arm, is slightly less provocative than i thought it was.
he was nonetheless my first dirty-dance partner. even if we didn't really do it right.
and six years later, i see him walking down union street.
i secretly giggle inside every time i see him.
i like imagining that in the midst of all of the students, all of the strangers, hundreds and hundreds of them, there's that one out there, that attempted to awkwardly grind with my 14-year old self.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

the holy virgin mary

Painting of the week:

by chris ofili

Monday, September 21, 2009

my friend white man.

in sunday school the classic answer was always "jesus". answer "jesus" to any question and your bound to get it right. or at the very least, you'd be granted approval from the sundayschool teacher.
answer, "white, middle-class, heterosexual, men" with disdain, to any question in women's studies, and the whole room will nod. yes. that is the correct answer. and if your feeling extra saucy, throw "evangelical" beside "heterosexual man", and the equation gets even uglier. and you become even smarter. we all know it. this is our enemy. it's come up in every single class. who has the power? who writes/decides history? whose experiences count as legitimate in society? who gets to be the subject? who gets agency? whose knowledge is seen as "Truth"? Who ruined the world? who is the oppressor? whose to blame... for capitalism, patriarchy, racism, sexism, heterosexism, transphobia, and all of the social ills of this world? who is the bane of our liberation and freedom? answer----- white, middle-class, heterosexual evangelical men. this is the answer, you can't get it wrong. the more you say it, the more profound it sounds.
each... and every.....time.
i use to really dig this. to a lot of people on the surface, this is feminism's mantra. this isn't my kind of feminism. blame the dude with a penis, and white skin. who digs females. makes reasonable money. and claims to know a God.
this way, it gave less onus on me. on women. on the marginalized, who i clung to like an over-protective mother, seeing no wrong in her children. but, i've discovered we all suck sometimes. we're all broken. we all oppress, as much as we are oppressed. white men have f.c.k.ed. up. im not disagreeing that this demographic has caused and continues to cause alot of poop. it is a problem that these privileged strands of identities, (straight, white, able-bodied) are for the most part assumed and unquestioned in our western society. it is a problem that this cultural production of westernized stampt hegemonic masculinity is as powerful as it is, at the sake of marginalizing others. these issues haunt me. but the answer shouldn't end with a pointed finger, "they did it". rather it should be a beginning point--- an opportunity for further dialogue. or deeper exploration. for critical thought.
if, the "white, middle-class, able-bodied, heterosexual, evangelical, man" is the irrevocable enemy, how will change ever really happen. by proclaiming academic war on the "oppressor", and by making all men who fit this category into enemies, we're jibbing ourselves. we're missing the point.
it's beginning to really tick me off that alot of women's studies students have this sentiment of dismissal, when-ever the white man is mentioned. Immediately their not taken seriously. their trouble. if an amazing article happens to be written by a rich straight Caucasian guy, their experiences, their knowledge is suddenly less worthy or deligitimate, because of their histories of power. if that same article is written by a first-nations, lesbian transwoman, suddenly it becomes more truthful. more valuable and legit. more sacred.
i feel its like reverse racism in a way. we're trying so hard to incorporate and celebrate and reclaim the voices of the oppressed, that in the process we're doing the same thing to our oppressor as He did to us. what is so revolutionary about an eye-for-an-eye? there won't be change, there wont be liberation until we're all in it together. men. women. and all of us who are floating beyond or in between. all of these voices matter. all of these voices can speak resistance. if we name someone the enemy, if we blame instead of discuss, if we discount what anyone says based on their gender, sexuality, race, class etc., even if that means they are male, then we're being exclusionary. my feminism isnt about exclusion.
we need to all take responsibility. we need to all recognize that there is, even from the cracks of the margins, pockets of power. agency. resistance. there is power in solidarity. there is power in difference. it's not okay with me when students disregard, or roll their fresh feminist eyes at white-straight-men. its not okay with me to silence even those who have silenced us.
perhaps if the answer is "white-middle-class-heterosexual-able-bodied- (and heaven forbid) evengelical men", than the question should be, "who do we need to carve space for in feminism and feminsit discourse? who do we need to actively love and forgive? who do we need to connect with, to unite with? whose liberation is bound in ours?".
perhaps we all need to learn to love.
a love that can transcend social categories.
a love that sees value in all. and rejects none.

Saturday, September 19, 2009


the other day, while riding the train, i noticed that the cute elderly lady next to me, in the turquoise pant suit, and the cherry red lipstick, gave me a lot of shifty, suspicious and perplexed looks.
i realized later that the cover of the queer poetry book i was reading had a giant picture of a strap-on penis on it.
i really ought to be more careful about my choice of public reading materials.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

the sixties gives me joyous heart palpitations.

yesterday i squirmed blissfully in my chair, attempting to politely suppress any inappropriate bouts of happy laughter. i sat cross legged, to insure that pee of excitement wouldn't escape from any unmentionable places. i sat even though i wanted to stand. stand in the middle of the classroom, up on the table, and dance, whip my shirt off and dance, while frantically squealing "I love school!".

i wanted to kiss every page of the text book.
i wanted to capture every word my prof said, in a tiny inconspicuous bottle, and then bring it home and put it into my bath water. i wanted to soak myself in it. marinate in it even.
yesterday i sat in my DREAM class- a 4th year seminar on the Global Sixties.
the sixties gives me heart palpitations.

womens liberation. stonewall riot. gay lib. civil rights. martin luther king. active non violence. black panthers. beat poets. counter-cultures. communes. drugs. free love. protests. anti-colonial discourse. Woodstock. cuban revolution. che. castro. lesbian separatists. Vietnam. anti-war movements. Malcolm x. student movements. sex. lots of sex. sit ins. cold war. Fanon. civil disobedience. the questioning and subversion of the 'American Dream', liberation. arty. beauty. justice. legacy. and most importantly passion. the sixties had passion. a passion i ache to see in the world today.

i am so excited. i secretly was praying "please be a 30 page essay, please be a 30 page esssay, pleleease", before he handed out the syllabus.
mmm the syllabus. i have a serious love interest in syllabuses. i could read and re read them over and over again, every half and hour for an entire year and never get bored. i secretly want to snuggle with them in bed. and eat cereal with them come morning.
oo i am so happy. plus the professor is lovely. i like when grad students teach classes for the first time. ive got a major weakness for nervous first timers. i love how adorable
his insecurity can be. when he stumbles on his words. or laughs awkwardly at his own jokes and then realizes the class is just staring at him blankly. i find it comforting and wonderful. he passes my prof scrutiny with flying colors. plus, he wear brown cords.

Once upon a time... last year, i was a women studies major. i noticed a history class on american social history and thought, hmm, there is a possibility the sixties will be mentioned in this class. i must take it.
the School said no.
i had to be a history major to take it.
so i became a history major too.

so i could take one class, that mentioned the sixties only once, for 3 hours the entire year.

as you can probably see, to discover i was able to take an entire years worth of sixties history this year, i was flabbergasted and literally got tears in my eyes when i saw it added officially to my course list on Q card.

i left class yesterday with a little drool on my chin.

Monday, September 14, 2009

i use to share my secrets with the lake.
somehow i believed that way god wouldn't hear them.
if i whispered into the stillness of each wave, quietly enough god would't know. nor would the world.
the lake was safe. calm. still. gentle.
when no one was near.
but sometimes i get a little nervous that they'll tell on me. they'll give me away, expose me. so as much as i trusted the water, i feared it.
id fear it'd drown me. eat me. the words i couldnt share with anyone. the feelings. the thoughts. the fears.
just ask the lake, she knows it all.
yesterday at the union station i thought alot about secrets. the hold they have on our lives. the bondage, the freedom, the pain, the guilt, the glory, the joy, the comfort that they can bring. looking at the hundreds of people all around me i wondered what they were hiding. hurting.running from.
we wear secrets like money-belts for travelers. strapped firmly underneath our clothes. protecting what both what we treasure and hate the most. hiding our secrets away from the untrusted. the thief. who will leave us empty. we want them near so we can feel them when we breathe. but sometimes it hurts. and you wish someone would just take your damn money.
sometimes secrets are more like ghosts. that haunt you when you least expect it. when your brushing your teeth. crossing the street. looking at the stars. they creep up.
sometimes their like bees and tacks. that you've swallowed.
they sting and scrape their way down.
sometimes they leave you nauseous in a 10 hour car ride home.
and frightened when your alone.
unfortunately the lake told god my secrets. i suppose s/he knew them all along. still i cant bring myself to talk. so instead, i wait till midnight, and snuggle at the Creator's feet. God sits on a big comfy arm chair and drinks green tea late at night. s/he waits to share. s/he waits for me to sit and there i cry. my god doesn't need words. defenses. pretending. s/he just holds me till the morning.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

aubergine the eggplant painting.

Aubergine woke up from a dreamless sleep on that Tuesday. she couldn't tell time, even though a big red clock arrogantly hung to her left. she only experienced time, slowly.... and inevitably, with a tinge of regret. the clock reminded her daily that she was a one dimensional piece of art, imprisoned on a canvas, in the kitchen of her enemy. this afternoon seemed to be no different than any other. she simply hung, in the same place, on the same yellow wall, venturing only into her thoughts. on afternoons like these she'd think of love and family. she'd wonder if other eggplants were ever immortalized with pain. aubergine would, in these long hours of boredom imagine what life would have been like if she still lived in the garden, as a young tangible vegie. BUT THEN.... her musings were interrupted by the violent odor of something that smelled like burning.... flesh? aubergine started to panic. her painted contours began to tremble. she had no real flesh to burn.... where was this stench coming from?

the fire alarm started its usual summoning of dinner, and from the darkness of the next room emerged the Vegetarian. then aubergine saw her--- laying lifelessly on the frying pan.
what an unforeseen conflict aubergine thought sadly.

Part II.

aubergine couldn't toss in her sleep because she couldn't actually move. but if she could have tossed during those dreams she would have. tossed, and danced and even giggled. in those dreams she would be 3 D, and five feet tall; she would have little purple arms and lovely purple hands. she'd be mincing that Vegetarian. She would be smothering her with tomato sauce, and cloaking her with cheese. In a Pyrex coffin. the Vegetarian wouldn't cry or smile or talk or plea, she'd just lay there, marinating in basil and olive oil from the night before. Aubergine would feel empowered and alive, as she'd slide the vegetarian in the preheated oven to cook for the next 45 minutes. aubergine would then dust off her lovely little eggplant hands, on her lovely little purple apron and smile. but before eating, she'd take out her paints and create an immortalizing portrait of the vegetarian now broiled in damn sauce and cheese. There on the yellow wall she'd hang her painting in the empty space where aubergine herself once hung.
for this was aubergine's dream. her immortal hope.

snail coitus makes me smile