Your Daughter

For S.

You tell me that she was a breech-birth. I’d
always thought that was worse
        but
            you say
it was easier that way;
didn’t hurt
as much as the first time,
            when your Son was born.

She is two & a half years old.

She’s the most adorable thing I’ve ever seen,
& I used to fucking detest
        the word “adorable”,
            especially
                if it was ever used
to describe me.

When I tell you this, it makes you laugh:

“You’re not adorable!
Sweet,
        maybe,
but only sometimes, & sweet like
liquorice: a weird,
        acquired taste”.

We’ve stayed awake far too late tonight,
drinking red wine
        & talking
            about our lives.

I once believed we were defined entirely by
the roles we play in a stupid fucking game,
        & that neither the rules
            nor the roles could
ever change but

when you leave me,
        briefly,
to check on the children,
            I realise
that I was wrong:

You’ve changed me completely:
        
I don’t believe
that this is a game any more;
        now,
            I see it as a dream
                waiting

to be realised.

Language Games

I assert my existence with this sentence.

With this one, language turns the intangible essence
of myself into a substance,
an external object created
from the interior composed of spaces,
& the connections
between them;

interactions; the relation
of a relationship to that
which surrounds it;
a project
motivated by tensions & the tension
between them;

repetition & other patterns
composing
their own performance.
Now
        a pause in the form
of the following:

escape,
confrontation,
affirmation & transcendence,
a permanence made possible
only through disappearance.
So with these words the author now tries

to achieve this by using
the third person to persuade the second
that you can see
what he wants when she
presents these series
of symbols
& with this penultimate sentence I present you with a question:

where did the words come from?

Beyond Idempotence

Nothing else comes from yourself
when applied under
                a binary operator

            or when
interpolated between
History & the
hysterical performativity
demanded of us
            by those who would
subject us to

                isolation

                so intense
that subjectivity blends
with the screen;

your/our/my
fingertips intimate with
        plastic
                & glass;
touching that
which can never touch back…

when enough of us
            are stuck
to damaging habits,

like a bird with clipped wings,
            escape mutates
from ease into extreme difficulty…

We need to break from this endless
            imposition
of regulation upon our bodies,
the remorseless, repetitive demands
always controlling &
            quantifying
the value of our lives
            to satisfy
the demands of profit.

Time is alive & so am I,
& we both deserve our freedom.

I need you & you need me:
        we need each other.

Solidarity is the only solution.

Fuck the impotence of idempotence
imposed upon us from above:

Multiply together & we’ll become
            
            infinite.

The Möbius strip

…to distinguish between
            where the ending begins
& the beginning ends;
                searching, again,
for the origin of circles
            without knowing
why we need something more
        than this
furiously reproducing,
            restless
placidly self-devouring,
                Ouroboros;
seducing us with a
            forked-tongue;
a sensuous oscillation,
                licking at our skin
while we're watching
            paradox fuck ambiguity,
rapt with
            lustful disgust:
Touch & be touched
                by sensation:
Two hearts beating
            within one mother;
the instant
        between thought & action;
words forge connections
            that transcend contingent flesh,
& the warmth of your breath
         against my neck
allows me to accept
            our inevitable death.
& to no longer worry about what
        it means, because
what would that achieve?
            So let's instead ask what
we want from the answer,
        because hidden there,
deep within the question,
    meaning is waiting
patiently
        for us…

Rejoice & Complain

Awkward instant
            when action
precedes knowledge of the response
& energy flows
between two spectators
            bewildered
by the power of reflex.

Ridiculous instance
            when we notice
the patterns that exist,
            but these
strange sounds that we make
can’t quite equal what
we want to say,

& so they send us back where this began:

trying to make you understand
            what I think I am,
what it is
         that I think
I want to say;

yet every attempt I make
        to understand you,
            & who
                you think you are
seems leads me astray…
 
but still the desire remains
to recover
some small hopeful glimmer
            of sense:

closer first & then farther apart as
blood fills then empties from
            the chambers of our hearts,

eyes open wide,
            & try to hide the gaze
that contains every hideous mistake,
every time we rejoiced & complained*

That specific vibration we call speech
isn't enough to reach you,
so again I remain where I began:

the words serving only
to obscure the meaning.

All that I want to say has already
been said in a different way:

“I am with you, and know how it is”**

The task is to try & believe in it…

*Rejoice – Julien Baker
** Crossing Broklyn Ferry – Walt Whitman