when is a movement more than a movement

Perhaps it stems from my obsession with bodies. The various ways in which we decorate them, enhance or decrease them, locate the voices kept hidden within folds. There is no body I do not notice. Though I prefer the ones with weight, curvature that forces me to practice mathematics (diameter, circumference, right angle, obtuse, quadratically-equated hips), I will also notice the bony ones: ribcages like dish racks.

I attend a dance performance featuring a dear friend of mine. There are two long rows created by metal chairs. Each one gets filled in with a pleated body, attentive and ready. Music arrives and I recognize it as an instrumental version of a popular song. My eyes grow heavy, feeling more like mountains than tiny pebbles on my face. They fall or something falls from them. I am drowning. (I am crying).

The gestures created from each dancer’s movement are ominous, narrated by faces lit by rouge on cheekbones and reddened lips. There are no words, yet I find myself translating the narration of their bodies.

This one is about falling in love and the fumes spread throughout a village of others. They grow sickly giddy: pushing hips out, curving thighs upward, lifting legs toward cheeks, twirling, twirling.

This one is about longing. Stuck inside the invisible structure of solitude. Of emptiness. The language of: this is not enough. Dancer is alone. Pushing out of/ away from her body. She is stuck. She studies the way it feels. Tempts the air around her with the ways in which her skin can shake and tremble. There is no way of getting out; how to make do with this.

A song arrives. I know this one. I’ve performed to this. The tears fall down my face like tree sap, slowly. They tumble. These bodies of women are able to curve in ways I want my poems to. They feast on instrumentation, beats, rhythms and remixed choruses.

These dancers are circular. Their bodies are oceans. I am boxed and locked. My body is scribbled.

There is a moment when a movement becomes more than just a word or gesticulation of intention.

The song fades out. The dancer walks to the side where the others watch. The audience claps. I clap. The audience writes down notes on designated papers, offering critique for this show of previewed works-in-progress.

I want to annotate my triggered memories. I want to walk up to them and whisper moans of sadness into their eardrums. Instead, I rip out twelve eyelashes and give one to each of them. Not for wishes, but to offer up my cells as a gesture…a movement..an extraction of intimacy.

what has not arrived has arrived

What has arrived in me can only be defined as a loose poem. A sawed off slice of petrified wood announcing the arrival of stunted time. A promiscuous sleep. A bitten tongue due to acidic underbite of regret.

I have been carrying around a letter I wrote in my wallet for almost four months now. The sweat in July from my thighs moistened it. After a monsoon in August, it grew wet and stuck. Its pages grew delicate. Several days later, it dried, but now its corners crumble and some words dripped away. It’s for a woman who climbed into my pocket in the late Spring. A woman too tall to see the tops of trees; she converses with the missing pieces bitten out of the sky. She is mermaid-thin. She is mermaid-beautiful. She is a mermaid. Some things are easier admitted on paper, pressed into envelopes, interrupted by a stamp and mailed away. Some things are easier mailed away. In her letter to me, she studied the anatomy of her torso sucked dry by another the way one might devour a heavily marinated sparerib. Gobbled down in a good kind of way. In my letter to her, I tell her all my secrets or the one that matters most. The kind of secret that interrupts dinner parties and sexual encounters. I tell her what I’ve done and what has not arrived yet…….

[back-ordered] love.
a baby.
a heal.
a rest.

a let go. . . . .

My skin flakes off in fearful glances. Where did I come from? Why do I arrive like this?


I announce to a decoupaged dancer that I am contemplating a travel. I announce to a decoupaged dancer that I am worried that the sick stuffed beneath the fourth and twelfth layers of my skin–which has been lurking for years–is oozing out of me.

And then someone sends me a sunset. And then I drink a cup of coffee and burn away the bad thoughts corroding my throat. And then I write a poem. And then I kick a woman out of my bed. And then I isolate isolate isolate. And then I cry kernels of my childhood into steroid-enhanced boulders. And then I eat some more. And then I purge. And then I hum a song I made up while bike riding. And then I forgive myself. And then I change my mind.

an ode to the green-dressed woman…

…in red baseball hat which read: OBEY, who curves her body in a hip-hop way, curled lips into teeth, bent knees in the direction of the moon (which I had to imagine since we were underground).

I feel the need to admit that when you lifted your right leg in a dance move that can only be described as the concrete scrape, I saw your underwear. And I only committed to my stare for as long as I did because the color was nude or blanched peach like your skin and I suddenly felt closer to you than to myself.

Your fingernails match your dress and I wondered which area of your body gained the green first.

If I wasn’t so shy insecure withdrawn self-conscious, I’d whisper into your ear: jungle green, the shade of crayon you represent.

When the local 4 train arrived, I sat across from you. Tried to ignore the fullness of my bladder by studying the various shapes of moles and freckles on your calves.

Can I call your eyes slate? How about I compare their color to the time of night when black, grey and green compete with the stars.

Are you a dancer or do you just dance well?

Beneath your red cap, your brown hair is lopsided. Do you know how you turn beautiful into a language, rather than just a word?

What happened was I bent my neck down, wrote notes into my notebook for a length of time I lost track of, but when I looked up you were gone. Your red baseball cap was on your friend’s head. The other dancer. Lithe male with deeply padded lips. You got off at Grand Army Plaza or Eastern Parkway. You live somewhere near to me. More importantly, you live on this earth. I wanted to watch your exit. Would you twist and hop your way off this train like you did on the subway platform? Would you twirl, leap, pop your limbs through the double doors?

I missed your finale.

dance because it is all that is left to do

A woman risks paralysis as moan of body leans toward pavement/ Dancer catches her boarded-up bones before the crash arrives.

In an air-conditioned movie theatre, a huddle of purchased attention spans.
Black licorice unpeeled from non-recycled materials slithers into mouth.
Laps press together to make room for more ticket holders.
Woman complains of noisy rocking chair. Calls it a bed without the comfort.

A German enters wearing illumination and a cigarette. She is projected from three dimensional memory.

How to structuralize gender?

the strength of illusion and mobilized bodies/

What is the rhythm of water?

to dance with the vigor of a flood eating away an entire village/

On the other side of a movie screen, a man recruits women for sport. Chronicles their measurements and pairs them up in size/breast/genital order. The next day, he is found with his tongue removed due to improper fondling. How necessary are cages for men who behave like improper beasts. Must we dance them away with the grace of carved heels plunged into their chests. Why do some chromosomes have the rhythm of murder weapons.

Later on, a woman resembles a church bell, leaning back and forth with paper cup clutched between palms, empty as her belly. Coins have no nutritional value and (sometimes) acknowledgements are enough to last through one more day.


If she is sad (enough), carry her. Transform spine into tabletop and utilize strength of knees to travel her away from the sorrow.

Death does not need to be planned, traced with chalk and blood clots, in order to occur.

Sometimes, it is just as easy to slip one’s self into splintered chairs or window frames or dining room tables and….and….disappear.