I’m going to say some things that happened.
(We pretend that constative and performative
are coeval. They aren’t. Let’s stop overthinking.)
At some point, I loved a beautiful stately man,
who kept a small penis in his pants. With that,
he nudged me from time to time.
I showed a famous poet a poem I had written
about Hez Bollah, and kind of about the pope,
and he said “that’s not a poem. Manifesto.”
I sucked ur dick for as long as u gave it to me.
(We use the word “dick” to mean too much.
Downsize, please.) Now I have two voices.
One high-register, but total-throat. The other,
deep falsetto, kinda? Rufus Sewell fucked a guy
I liked. No poet is “famous,” if we’re honest.
When I sat up, found me saying, “I was raped,”
and just a little more of the detail. Not much.
Enough to show this wasn’t my first time
on the bottom. A student asked me, what
is difference between catalectic and caesura.
Do you know, I had to think about it.
If homosexuality were possible, we’d have found
it by now: like faster-than-light travel. Once ur
free of “them” u feel less fucking stupid.
I’ve a friend I see rarely. Tonight, I texted her
“I’m a bottom now,” and realized I’ve sent her
this message several times over the years.
What words would she have for a person
of such meager self-awareness? “Bottom”
is too kind a word. A girl I used to fuck agrees,
and adds that she now wishes to put curlers
in my hair. I said fine, I guess. Now we are
“in community” and never leaving, sorry.
I mean—sorry. I mean “in Brooklyn,” or else
“in time” or even like “in Lesbos” or something.
I never came out to my mother, and I hope
she never reads this. She knows (or thinks) I
was raped in a service station, like a “gas
station,” as they call them here in community.
When I changed sex, an angry woman told me
that she felt entitled to rape me, once,
one time only, in the interest of justice.
My friend—his cock has grown over the years—
I avoid “cock,” ugly, like a drip—“dick,” flexible,
but it’s played and we need a new word—
him, the friend: raped by a ghost in a helicopter,
and guess what, he was underage, and it was
his boss, and he loved it, and landed the copter.
I never sucked a dick of any kind in the town
where I was born. I gave an old timer a handjob
in Larry Gagosian’s house, for money, or drugs.
Okay. I am a lesbian. I am from somewhere.
I stopped caring and I stopped writing.
Years passed and something else happened.
I said to my other friend: it’s very important
to note exactly what her penis tasted like
when I stuffed it into my cheek-pouch.
And obviously like, there aren’t words—it tasted
the myth of homosexuality, and it’s not a word,
just a taste. I could squint and make it taste,
from my own body. A guy I knew was like, “well,
look, we have traditions of gay verse and how
i want to know, do they survive you?” I lolled.
Anyway, I said the thing I didn’t know—let’s
say “violet,” maybe—and then felt the shape
around it, and then I realized I can’t write.
Because I had been doing it for too long.
Not poem. Manifesto. Twenty years since I was
first raped, and nothing. Nothing, nothing.
I just wanted to give the love I have in contour,
I didn’t BUT I did feel the edge of the words,
not make a thing about a thing, inside a thing.
There is no such thing as homosexuality.
There is no such thing as transsexuality.
I just want to eat the best food, at the best table.