NaPoWriMo 2/30 Measuring White

Measuring White

White opinions always matter
women’s rarely do.
So she dons a suit of I Am Serious
to discover how white she’s willing to lie

White lives define the Civilized
Black, the dark and wild
White hangs Black art to the sound of Black music
oh Black is still something White loves to buy

White speaks White English grammatically
an accent a sign of the barbarous
White is proud to only know White to choke
on the tongues grandparents forced parents to swallow

White families, the realm of the norm, of bliss
the choice to live queer, abomination
Now measure the cost of the fight to be civil
Gasp at the price of domestication

the measure of White the measure of right the measure of kith
and kin                the measure of White the measure of light to see
who is out and who in               the measure of White the measure of
might the measure of power that does us all in

______________________________________

2 reasons I am, today, once again, furious about White:
The Apartheid of Children’s Literature

Last year, only 93 of the 3,200 children’s books published were about Black people. That works out to less than three-percent

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NaPoWriMo 2014! 1/30

Waaayy too long away from my own blog doing other business. Now its April and BACK TO WRITING I MUST GO.  One never knows where poem-a-day will take one, but this one has been thinking constantly about white privilege, whiteliness, and the sixth extinction, so one suspects a lot of poems exploring whiteliness will be coming out.

First up

Destruction Lies in White DNA

Deoxyribonucleic acid
Deoxyribonucleic acid
Deoxyribonucleic acid
we whites refuse to assess disaster

Deoxyribonucleic acid
Deoxyribonucleic acid
Deoxyribonucleic acid
acquired slaves so the world we’d master

Deoxyribonucleic acid
Deoxyribonucleic acid
‘til cost was then reappraised—oil
less coins than breeding black flesh, and faster.

Deoxyribonucleic acid
the ways that we disconnect from actions,
industrial revolution hiding
the dead and dying. Oh we profit masters!

Deoxyribonucleic acid
the ways that we disengage from actions
that we take every day. The world knows,
though—that we are their disengaged assassins

NaPoMo 30 – In class I learned about

In class I learned about

In class I learned about
class, how all my professors
had all of their fingers

No table-sawed tips
no thumbs numbed under two tons
of crates of Miracle Whip and now dangling
uselessly.

So many lower arms none
having been lost to the second of
having not remembered not to grab the nut
as it slipped into the combine feed

A hook for a hand—be teased
for decades, but no kids ran in fear
of so common place a horror

How easy in class to assume Latin
professors had no fingerprints for they gestured softly with
no soil embedded, permanent tattoos
their finger swirls never fresh-plowed fields

What kind of a life leaves a man’s hands whole?
Hands uncallused, filed clear fingernails,
skin not red and broken by a cold wet wind?

NaPoMo 25 – Weaponized

Weaponized

Castor beans morning glories almond tea weaponized
orange juice niacin daffodils weaponized
kitten breath, plough shares, emory boards weaponized
sliding boards, Bic pens, warm bed, kitchen knives weapon-
ized booby prize, bedroom eyes, pasturized weaponized
Tylenol, bandaids, birth control, self-control,
out of control, outer space, quiet space weaponized
childhood weaponized embroidery weaponized fur-
niture weaponized straw weapon Coke weapon eye-
glass drinking glass stained glass looking glass weapons
now, now weaponizing beauty bars hair styles style
guides guide books travel plans passports airports car ports 
team sports steam ports steam punk old junk deep funk wea-
ponized planet:      water      earth      fire      air      we-

NaPoMo 24 – Alternative Means

(a poem found in this article: Texas executes mentally impaired inmate)

Alternative Means

After the European Union banned 
the export               last year 
of the barbituric acids regularly 
used in a three-drug, three-drug, three-drug 
cocktail favored by American 
prisons, officials 
in the States were forced to 
find                       alternative means 
of executing 
their 
inmates. 
In september, authorities in Florida (land 
of sweetly juicely Disneyly illusion)
used pentobarbital to kill 
a death row inmate, despite pleas 
from the drug’s manufacturer that demanded 
otherwise.

By switching 
to a single dose of 
Nembutal – the product name of pentobarbital – Mr. 
Hearn’s execution cost 
the state $1,286 and 86, 86, 86 cents (who in the executioner’s
realm calculates the exact cents?)
instead of the $84
.55 
for a three-drug three-drug three-drug
cocktail.

NaPoMo 23 – Words in My World: Temporary

Temporary

From Until to Further Notice
Sky be gray and horse be nervous

Wine be acid, sweet be sour
here be far and near be furthest

Ink be dry and bones be gone
night be dawn and god be nervous

Spell be broken, fly be huge
Starve be supper and food be locust

Healer be lost and plague be many
Time be stuck and glue be nervous

Bow be split and limb be shattered
Fearsome be dead, and dead resurface

Sign on pole at 440

Sign on pole at 440

NaPoMo 22 – Earth Day

Earth Day

I wake up, drag
my ass out of bed when
the dogs’ whining is several
decibels past unavoidable and then
they cascade down stairs as I
galumph behind,
then out the back door they go
so they can pee, then
the same for me,
but in the bathroom,
where I finish and flush
and then grab a plastic bag and scoop
the cat shit and piss clumps from
the litter box, tie the bag, take it
out the front door, throw
it in the garbage, then back
to the bathroom where a cat will be
using the clean field, and I listen
to the scratching while I wash
my hands, fill the cat food bowl then
back into kitchen to turn on
the water for coffee and fill
the dog food bowls then let
the dogs in to eat as I dump
yesterday’s grounds into the compost bucket and eat
my morning protein bar with vitamin water to wash
down drugs and herbs and supplements, then
let the dogs out to poop, which I will later
put into plastic bags and throw
into the garbage, but right now I press
the French press, pour, add
splenda and half and half, let
the dogs back in and then head
upstairs again, sucking in coffee with each
step, to check my morning email, and by
the time I address the first several electronic
urgencies and nytimes.com the coffee has
worked its daily magic and I go
back to the bathroom for my morning poop, which
I also flush away, and I understand
perfectly well the process
of digestion, so I know
where all this shit comes from. The question
today is where is
all this shit going cause
there’s no such place
as away and I don’t know what
I think I’m saving with that
one little compost bucket trick but
I am quite certain it is
not the Earth.

NaPoMo 20 – Stockholm

Stockholm

I know this sounds weird, she
said, but it’s like the pain is
well this isn’t the best word but
the pain is my
friend.

Has become my friend, I’m
with it every day I know
its moods and I know
how its heart pounds right
before it pounces.

I sound crazy, don’t I.  It’s
taken everything
from me and yet it’s
also always with me.

Never alone now. Not anymore.

I sound crazy, don’t I. I think
the pain wants to make me
crazy. Like maybe that
is its goal. Not
making me hurt. Making
me crazy.

I sound crazy, don’t I. I think
I might be crazy.

NaPoMo 19 – Forgetting

Forgetting how much life we have lived dead
we cry Oh Loss! Oh Loss! as if we’ve only now
noticed the bobbing of amputated desires decorating
the waves of the wakes we’ve left on our way

into the earth. Into the sky. Along the edge
that goes on being edge forever
unless you turn back.

Which would be a loss of future but
no greater than how going on regardlessly
is to be mired and lost in the swamp of the past.

If measured in atoms our lives stretch
nye on to infinite. In eons, a lifepan’s no more
than a moth’s: hatch, molt, mate, die.

But linearity is time’s best ruse. If we remember
how much live we’ve lived dead then death is
both after and before time then life
is what we’ve been losing all along
and death only how we return to
what we’ve always known.

NaPoMo 18 – Body / Self

Body / Self

A stretch of skin
inside billions of lives bacteria amoeba virus
parasite protozoa worm fungi bug

fields of subtle power

ways of communicating mysterious
tiny worlds in galaxies of tiny worlds
epic battles against invaders
scars and strategies
passed down through generations
loves and hates and matings wild
births and deaths at millions a moment
unknowable to the entity
I

The illusion of my and self
whether white blood cells marshal their troops in time
whether a fine flowing strand of DNA mutates
or doesn’t whether the big bang of the heartbeat
goes on banging or goes
silent

How it feels to a universe

How it feels to be a god
living, creating, fragile
lifespan determined by beings only guessed at
who may believe they are part of some bigger plan
or may not

If their fate determines their god’s?

Obsession with myself

what a laugh

what a self, to depend on worlds

that do not depend upon self

What a universe! What a god!