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Jet Jan 31
And it waited a moment longer than a moment’s pause

It was rain resisting its temper, attempting tenderness

Each drop the poignant pain in a patient bladder
when you hold to hear the end
of a song in a play or a whisper behind you
despite your body insisting you must leave

Then, it drowned the saplings in the gutter

a violent politeness
an apology for impeding
a housewarming gift
Jet Jan 31
i am lying on my stomach
after having spent hours propped up on my elbows
spent hours reading, sunbathing
spent hours getting drunk and tired in the sun
i am outside our new chicago home
in a courtyard belonging to only us

i am sprawled on the transparent blue plastic of my past
the cerulean beach chair that never made it to a single beach.
its plastic wound and woven around the metal
like nothing i’ve ever seen before

and i fall asleep

and i’m awakened by the raindrops on the low of my bare back

but it is not raining

and i wake up naked, inside, in your arms as you tap out a tune on me

and the blue chair that we put in the shower
when my brother was too weak to stand
because my brother was too weak to stand
is nowhere to be found
even when he went to live in the hospital
that chair
gathered rust
in a closed, dripping shower

we threw it out
it reminded us of a hard time
he was our only surviving souvenir  

i miss the chair
and i miss the person he was before it all
before he gathered all this rust
2021's thoughts of 2008
Jet Dec 2020
and in the 12th my teacher grade tenderly grabbed my wrist
and said
what is this
and
I said
me
But
that was the wrong answer
he wanted me to say
my —-wrist
he wanted me to say my
MINE

He wanted me to take ownership
of my body
he wanted to acknowledge
Or
He wanted me to acknowledge
that I was
An inside
of a body
And
Not a body
He wanted
Me to think what I just
“mistakenly”
called “me” was just a vessel
To hold “me”
That is it was lent to me and would return
from whence it came
that I was barely or merely or some other kind of “erely” visiting
and
that me and mine were different when it came to body

Such a kindness and autono-motive restoration to remind a person that they are
More
That they are not their looks
or their actions
Or even potential ambulation
I know what he offered me was a kindness

I declined
I said no in my own way
If you’re wondering
What I said was “you are what you eat”

I still don’t know what I meant
If I meant

and I’ll ozymandius myself
If I claim to be more than this

I am crumbling, but I will stand tall on these broken feet

As soon as I can fix my posture
Originally performed at iFell Gallery on November 30, 2019
Jet Dec 2020
Mobile/Stabile - I don’t speak French

Main two types of mainly 3D artist
Alexander “sandy” Calder

Mobile - is a French pun meaning both "motion" and "motive"

If you had one of these above your crib to muse over as you drifted to dreamland, you have Sandy to thank.

Stabile-  following the style of the name mobile, is a sculpture that is unmovable

Both are French words I have trouble saying


I am becoming or was becoming paralyzed from my feet up
(they still haven’t decided which,
feel free to laugh at that)

Feel free to laugh at all of it, I do

I have complications from unbeknownst year long scarlet fever that turned into rheumatic fever that turned into julian Barre to thank for that.

There is no cure, so I’m using condescension.
I call it Julian Barre because “Gee YAWN BERET” is just so **** hard to eek out.
And
It requires more pomp than it deserves

Okay it’s part condescension and part more French words I can’t quite say.

It’s sort of like the opposite of when I try to say  “petit” pwessON” to be cute, I mean to say Little Fish to address my partner:

But instead say “petit pwazOne” which means
little Poison
Originally performed at iFell Gallery on November 30, 2019
Jet Dec 2020
And at my new job I am the manager-in-training.

In French it is

“Responsable en formation”

Or as I would say,
Responsible information.

However, I was not responsible in gathering my information.

During my interview, I said masseuse.

Turns out that is heavily connotated and maybe even denotated as a *** word.

I asked if it was the French ending

He said, “No, it’s the happy ending”

Maybe French is only **** because of how much is escapes me.

The opposite reason is why death was never **** to me
because of how much I escaped it

Maybe death finds
Me
****

And Anyway I got the job
And a month later my boss gave to me a T-shirt that said
your table is ready

At first,
Instead of a massage table,
I thought it was a stretcher
And I laughed

I wonder what that means

“You could have died” “you almost died” “it’s a miracle you’re still here”

“we’re /glad/ you’re still here”

Are words I often hear from my doctors
who almost always meet with me pro bono because I am poor, but also interesting

Medically

But they are not words I hear from my mother

Those are the words she saves to give to her 90-something mother-in-law

I say 90-something not because I am careless or inattentive, but because my grandmother Adeline lied about her age so often in her youth, that both she and the government forgot her actual age

The words my mother gives to grandma J upset her.

She is tired of living

Asked all of us to pray for her death

Asked my brother in law to be “to help her get to heaven tonight”
Said “I know you can help me get to heaven tonight” presumably because he works for the cook county coroner's office.

He is a man so jaded that he sometimes can only laugh on the job when he sees particularly trite Chicago suicide notes:

To be fair, he’s not cruel
It is usually when it is something
Like
“you either die the hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain”

Anyway, it made him cry when old Addie asked that

and also if you are a prayer person,
please pray for her death,
I can’t bring myself to do it.
Originally performed at the iFell Gallery on November 30, 2019. Adeline D Johnson passed peacefully on May 13, 2020. She was buried with her dog’s ashes. She was buried next to her husband she hadn’t seen since 1976
Jet Dec 2020
And I know so many things to be universal

I read somewhere once that we are all related to one another

to the tune of 50th cousins

That you just can’t go back that many generations

That there aren’t enough people left to give anyone their own grandparents

Or something

So intangible

I want to feel the connection between each two men

I believe we are all a woven blanket of fibrous soul

Aptly covered in fibrous meat

I want to believe that we all share more than ancestors, but I will settle for this
Jet Dec 2020
I

At night, I search for the wrench
I lift it off my nightstand
I lie down on the workbench
the cool weight held in my hand

what I must loosen first is my knee
lull myself to a state of repose
leg is a swollen trunk of a tree
placidity the pain soon outgrows

ache that is green
ache that is ivy,
ache that is wrapping
around me
entirely.

being disarming,
the way that a friend will--
in no way harming,
I pry up one tendril,

My ache and I have just locked eyes
I turn my bolt counter-clockwise

just one half turn.
making way t’ward release,
pain is adjourned
to finally find peace


II

And in the factory,
It seems I was wound too tightly
Deemed satisfactory
Now, I relieve pressure nightly

The bolt pushes in such a way
it leaves the metal bent
Relief is not given away
but instead it is lent

pain that is sharp
pain that goes squish,
pain that is swimming
around me
like fish.

The pain in my head
a pain bright white
Will surely spread
If not done right

My head and I sob, throb, and cry together
And then I finally sever the tether

spin one full revolution,
Though I know it's unwise,
Lets in nightmare pollution
Maybe last night’s reprise



III

At night, I will always search for the reasons
Why is it that bad things happen to good people
I lie down and lament each of the seasons
If it’s about church, I’m skewered on the steeple

Now plaguing me is my dear heart
O! Please don't think me frigid
It’s how to be, if you are smart
Walls that throbbed become rigid

want that is lace
want that is divine,
want that dissipates
completely
in time

Wincing at every twinge
Heart so hollow it awards me pain
Lace is fraying at the fringe
Meteor in my orbital plane

said it flutters and feels flighty
prescribed one spin righty tighty

Then, compact are the loves I hold,
Locked in my heart airtight
No space empty or left cold
I wish you all goodnight
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