Watch this great video created from a poem by Daphné Cheyenne, previously published here at Electric Cereal.
And if you read French, check out her blog.
Clementine was on her back masturbating in her room. Her room was next to her dad’s. Yeah.
And yeah she was silent.
Somewhere it occurred to her that they were masturbating at the same time.
Clementine pictured nude men. She gave them the faces of the men on the poster on her door called The Rise And Fall Of Peoples And Nations For 4,000 Years. It was a timeline of world history with little portraits of the greats. Yes.
All the world’s leaders, all monsters, all heroes. Men.
On the other side of the wall Clementine could hear her dad.
She pictured her nipple as a little door her dad opened and stuck his finger in, doing a come-hither motion.
This was all over. Gone.
the chess pieces are made of glass
they are there to look pretty but not be touched
the tissue stands perky in its box
like it’s been pulled up to look perky
like it’s not meant to be touched
like it’s trying to look pretty
the chess board is centered on the coffee table
which means the tissue box is not
which puts it on the edge
i photograph the chess board
and the tissue box
upload the portrait
with the caption
in my psychiatrist’s office:
should i cry or play chess?
it gets favourited once
no one replies
so i neither cry nor play chess
my psychiatrist is losing his hair
i take a photo
that i delete afterwards
my psychiatrist farts in his office
when i am in it
i know from the smell and the way
he shifts in his chair
he also looks like a psychiatrist who would fart
when i picture him as a kid
i see him farting a lot
my psychiatrist’s office is gamey
he never has the window open
one time he had a cold
and was snuffling all over himself
the air was gamey and snuffly
with his cold
it smelled bad
i’m already ill
open a window
Since February, Gemstone Readings has become known for hosting events featuring writers such as Bunny Rogers, Mike Bushnell, Lucy K Shaw, and Cassandra Gillig. Last Friday, they had a media launch for their new website and poetry videos featuring the work of Kate Durbin, Natalie Chin, and Stacey Teague. Below are some questions I sent to Laura Marie Marciano and Monica McClure about the work they are doing at Gemstone and about the video reading of McClure’s poem “Petocha”.
When did you first conceive of the idea for Gemstone Readings? What was the inspiration for starting it?
Laura Marie Marciano: I guess that is a hard question to answer.
I think I was feeling a sense of frustration with the types of readings that were happening – they seemed to be lacking some kind of magic and inclusion. It was the same thing and the same people and the same venue. It was winter and it was real cold. I was thinking about the Olympics since they were about to start. I thought we needed some mystical sort of reading to happen so that people would feel alive again. So I organized this “Reading for Oksana”, (the Ukrainian figure skater from the 90s) to be held in the basement of Unnameable Books around the themes of cold hearts and sadness. And I had Bunny Rogers sing. And the heat wasn’t working so people had their coats on. And Ben Fama read. And it just made sense.
Then I wanted to keep going. And I wanted to make sure more people were included that hadn’t been before, specifically female identified. And I wanted to bring in my background of performance art and media art. I sort of wanted it to be like the Babysitters Club only for poetry– if that makes sense. So it was always there, I guess, and then it happened.
Monica McClure: I came to know of Gemstones when Laura created the “Last Petal On A Dying Rose” (as I think it was also called) reading for Bunny. I’d been thinking about Bunny’s Sister Unn installation for this essay I was writing about immortality online. Eternal love and longing encapsulated in digital icons played a part in my thinking about it. My partner, Ben Fama, read as well. I remember liking the 90’s kitsch of Oksana. For me, the Olympics will always be Oksana, Tanya Harding, Nancy Kerrigan, and the Magnificent Seven US Gymnastics team. Everyone on the reading was young. It’s important to stay in tune with what young people are doing. Laura’s poems felt very kindred to my poems in Mood Swing. They were investigating a vexed femininity, both fabulated and actually experienced.
I am nothing. Nothing. I am nothing and repetition can never make me something. I am nothing and I have some people fooled. I comb my hair. Sit by lakes. Eat handfuls of dry cereal. Watch people jump into lakes. Even on a cloudy day.
I felt a stirring that felt like something. It was only our stomachs squelching to remind us that our sex wasn’t beautiful. Our sex was nothing. I got up. Got dressed. Kissed you goodbye before you were fully awake.
6:30 am. Like usual. 6:30 am. Like always.
They jump into the lake for fun. Swimming. I hear them laughing. (We were laughing. We were drinking. We were fucking.) I see someone bobbing. Silver glimmers. Shimmering heads.
I feel confused. There are bigger lakes than this. There are bigger lakes to live by. To walk by in the morning when you remember you’re nothing. There are bigger lakes to laugh in. There are bigger lakes to drown in.
I feel confused.
Why don’t we all live by bigger lakes?
You want(ed) us to be something. Maybe I want(ed) us to be something.
It’s so simple to embrace the nothing. To take a sip that says hello, how are you? Easy to embrace and kiss in a way that means nothing. Easy to find a dark room, cover my eyes, scream and sweat in pleasure until I am nothing.
Today will be hot. I hope your stomach still squelches. The water already sways with boats.
Morning said to say hello.