paradise

Narrator:

Darker and more complex than you can imagine is the world.

Darker than that of the opened pupil, blank, blank

it is as dark as where the night sky meets the deep ocean.

To put words to this darkness. Everything trembles.

Ink against it illegible, yet

I speak representation, through this articulation

I invoke the faintest idea of the waves.

As to not remember the absence as it was. As it is.

I would love to save you from your visions

but all I can offer are dreams slept at night,

through darkness rather than against. Let me conjure

the hidden image calling for coherency.

Let it start here: a rupture, and through the rupture,

Waves roil out of nothingness. Creation.

 

 

Here is some Mount Moriah,

an Isaac to be sacrificed.

(These things are replaceable)

 

This is paradise. Something you have never seen before. A clean slate. For you.

It emerges from chaos, an ahistorical vacuum that only exists in your head.

Isaac is an airhead and mistakes the ordinary for the extraordinary.

 

Little white briefs cinched up over his hip-bones.

White tennis shoes pummel a warm quagmire, splash pummel

red pumice, brown pumice, black sands sparkle with quartz and sulfur.

Around him green sticky plants’ grains blossom like sandpaper. Tendrils of ferns tingle roots together.

Isaac builds a shrine, a circle of volcanic stone. Exalted: a plastic water bottle. Exalted.

That which is its own essence. The bloody turquoise of the mineral fact of things.

Isaac worships the bottle and then Isaac digs.

 

Winds mist the clouds through gnarled bark.

The cedar quakes and the lilies bend at the knee, Isaac digs while

Black white and brown pheasants circle him, quick eyes clucking

His hands in the ground.

He will dig until the bone is revealed on the fingers, until lava is reached,

Until it all caves in again.

 

God remains tucked away silently in his heaven.

Isaac reads/hears his fate.

He replies.

 

Isaac:

“ chef boyardee

let me tell you what

ill open my legs for you

and if that is not enough

you can slit me open and

put your hands inside my guts

drink my hemoglobin

become my phagic hemorrhage

you can wash me with salt and iodine diet pepsi ”

(p.s.)

“ but my raviolis will still be cooked inside

and they look like chicken carbonara ”

 

 

Narrator:

[The narrator] is miffed.

 

 

 

In his last moments, Isaac breathes out an explication on Queerness. It is all he can do.

 

Isaac:   Queerness… Queerness… Queerness…

A similarity of difference across cultures, spaces and times; and recognition of sameness as a

way of celebrating difference. Vets, artists and dominatrixes are Queer; green tank-tops, not so

much … not this season. A wave that drags you under after a little glimpse and a touch. Ahoy,

matey.

 

Narrator:

He dies [finally] and we move on.

But – first we shoot him with a camera. That’s right, we snap a little picture. Just before he dies, we trap his soul forever inside a little square. Like caging a bird to hear its last living song. We carefully crop the edges of the photograph so we can remember the moment how it ought to be remembered, that is, not how it was. We will relive his death, re-use his death over and over. When we see the picture we hear his sweet spectacular voice singing to be returned to his paradise. We reminisce, and it brings a little smile to our lips – we love our aesthetic, we love a brand.

 

Narrator:

A notification pops up on Isaac’s cell phone.

God has texted him, but Isaac can’t read the message because he’s dead.

 

 

God:

“Hey, its me(: so this is a sign and one type of sign is an omen: martyrdom relies entirely on representation for the martyr, for the martyr is nothing but a memory after it dies. Martyrs only exist in the imagination of the people, and people think of you what they will. Even in death you are a problem.”

 

 

Dead Isaac:

What if what I experienced as a living tourist in paradise was some curated, artificial but naturalized-though-discourse version of paradise which is actively displacing people through things like wilderness fortress conservation and gentrification? Why do we want our nature and cities to look nice? Who is a stranger in our eco-village? Why is nature something to look at now? Not be with, be part of? Why am I writing this down? Why am I talking about nature, talking over nature, not writing with nature, listening to the birds and responding with my own song? What if when writing about my memories of this constructed paradise I am invoking a colonial mythos, this artificiality that never was to begin with. And I fail to denaturalize the ideologies within it because I cannot properly situate it in cultural, historical and socio-political context. So, I am perpetuating this hyperstition, this problematic idea of what paradise is to other people who might hear about it and go there, and then the same thing happens to them and reality continues to be colonized by this mythos of what paradise has been constructed to be. That is, what it is not. And I am  complicit in it, the creation of this fabrication that is actively killing people, displacing bodies from their homes, taking them away from their paradise, the trees in their natural place. Was Eden a garden or a forest? What’s the difference?

 

Will I ever be able to experience the authentic Paradise?

Does the act of gazing upon Paradise bring the Real Paradise further away from me?

Does me being here suck the home away from these people, these people away from their homes?

Does the authentic Paradise exist outside of myself?

How will I access it without leaving my body?

Where is my body?

Can I deny it, pretty please?

Can I escape my Western white colonial gaze? Just this once. ☹

 

God:

Pluck out your eyes and then we’ll talk.

 

Isaac:

OK

 

God:

Just kidding(: don’t !! there might be a lawsuit if you go through with it and there isn’t really a transcendent trans-realm earth-heaven court that has the jurisdiction to hold a case like that. youll probably end up being compensated $20

 

 

Isaac:

When I remember these moments will I be re-enacting violence? On myself? Others? Who am I? Can you hear me?

When I remember these moments will I subconsciously change them to cope with reality?

Who cares? What if this is all meaningless? Does this matter? Does any of this matter?

 

Narrator:

If you say no, it sounds to me like you’re just saying that to make yourself feel better. To absolve you of a sense of guilt, to make you think you don’t have to contribute your share. Sublimating accountability into the scalar sublime, abstracting your problems so they’re so big that they aren’t your problem anymore. A little gaslighty, just saying. This must matter, even if it does not matter to you it matters to everyone you’re affecting. You deny yourself reality so you can deny that you have hurt people. That existence is inherently violent.

 

 

God:

You only see reality in your dreams and in your fiction,

because you know reality is far, far too traumatic to deal with.

 

Narrator:

You are afraid and this fear makes you worse, a worse version of yourself, but if a single taste of reality touched your tongue you would go mad. Your mind would be poisoned, your illusion shattered. You would never be the same. You could never make yourself feel better. You could never recover and you would die.

 

God:

So you are sacrificed.

 

 

God:

Death is but a dream.

 

 

 

Isaac:

This is the dream. I was standing on a tropical island. Heat was crawling on my skin.

The sky was itching blue and the palms were thirsty green,

the ocean throwing itself against the shore.

One side of the horizon was obscured by a massive steel plate. It was approaching slowly but

unstoppably,

replacing the sight of the horizon with itself. It was impending.

It was grating against the land and sea,

obliterating everything in its path and releasing massive energy like a dark sun.

I did not quite know what would happen when it grazed the land,

when the metal plate pressed against soil. Against home. Against skin. Against soul.

I wondered what was on the other side of the plate, if anything, and I wondered who this was all for.

I wondered if there is another world out there beyond the metal horizon

I wondered if there was a way to bridge these worlds,

if you had to leap from one to the other, or if you just let time take its toll.

I wondered if that meant the only way to get there was to die.

All I could be sure of was absolute, irreconcilable annihilation.

 

Part of me wondered if I could escape.

I said this is not my home,

I do not want to die here.

Surely, I could get away and get to somewhere safe.

After all this is but a dream. But, I wonder if all this will be destroyed… you know, by the time I

wake up.

 

 

Narrator:

If you didn’t pick up on this,

The metal doom plate was

the final stage of late capitalism masquerading as a mechanical rapture.

A metasystem that operates through a double-bind, a machine that carries out a reciprocal process of stratification and destratification on either side of itself – but this time it is absolute deterritorialization. The primary process will be revealed and then it will be the end, or the beginning. There will be no more technology. There will be no doing; only being. Finally, to be, to be again – but is to be to die, or to die to be again, what if again is just this time again, what if you walking into the light is you being born back into this life, the same way the heat death of the universe causes a new big bang, this is a recycled timeline, this is in the newsprints if you read it right, this is written in the sky in lines by the government, the chemtrails, this is in the white trucks, this is in the police sirens’ song, this is in the surveillance security state and the new world order.

 

Isaac:

Wow… and to think I was the harbinger.

 

 

Narrator:

You do not belong in warm places where the sun shines.

You belong where it is cold and it is grey with wind and dust and cold and rain. You belong nowhere.

 

God:

What no one notices is that everywhere is nowhere, the master narrative that upholds one’s coherent sense of subjectivity a stable being is a delusion. Do you know about jaguars? Try being mauled by one. Everything is already here, it merely changes forms, shapes, and textures. Listen to the ambiance. Maybe try yoga?

Go back to sleep and dream again.

 

Narrator:

You are driving in your car through the rain, you are driving your lover home. You are distracted, too stoned to see, you see kaleidoscopically through the windshield what appear to be tenements and cemeteries. Distracted by love, you navigate chaos: narrow roads, slow cars, buses and bikes weaving together in exhaust. A temporal tapestry, a pastiche of sheet metals, tin and aluminum, green and orange, red paint and rust. Curly hair and a lithe jaw. Is this the city of your lover? There is an inefficiency to its violence, an infantile infrastructure for destruction. What about the taxes? Swept under an Ikea rug. No… an artisan rug. This whole place has been sacrificed to a sweet saint. You are coming back from McDonalds. The sauce was sticky. He was your lover. From the vents, a sickening smell of ylang-ylang and french fries. You are coming back from McDonalds and there is a song on the radio.

You remember it:

 

Quítame la piel de ayer

Quítame la piel de ayer

No sé caer

Los árboles mueren de pie

Quítame la piel de ayer

No sé caerme

Quítame la piel de destellos

Saca mi boca de miel

Quítame la piel de ayer

Una sombra de destellos en tu piel

Sin ti no sé nada

“Take off the skin of yesterday

Take off the skin of yesterday

I do not know how to fall

Trees die standing up

Take off the skin of yesterday

I do not know how to fall

Take off my skin with flashes

Take my mouth out of the honey

Take off the skin of yesterday

A shadow of flashes on your skin

Without you I know nothing”

 

Narrator:

Are you dreaming again?

 

He was crying in my arms. I was kissing him on the head and the neck, on his shoulders and his collar

saying it’s okay, I love you, it’s okay, I love you, it’s going to be okay.

 

But all he could think of was death.

 

 

He wore jewelry around his neck, soft grey made of sparkling coral and geodes. I felt such love for him.

He was messing with the dead. He was contacting her from beyond the grave and trying to speak for her

somehow.

He spoke of an assault and how she was never the same after she got back from Israel.

She is in paradise now.

 

 

 

Would he feel better?

If I went back to paradise.

If I took her skin and gave it to someone else,

So someone could walk around in her skin again.

It would be like she came back to life,

Like she came back from paradise for him.

So it was. A violent catharsis:

Something was strutting around in her skin. And,

walking down the street, he saw her. Or, for a second, he thought he saw her. Again.

But he saw it wasn’t her. He could see her skin but could see right through it.

He did not see her in there so he screamed and screamed and

said no no no no no no come back you are not gone from me. Again.

 

He was denying himself reality.

I said I was sorry and I sang him a song.

 


Wow I wanna make you

Wanna cry

Poison

Keeps us alive

I love you so

I let you go

Do you remember?

Do you remember?

 

I vow

You pray

Still love : never fixed

Love hurts

It swallows home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It-girl

Life time

Small bombs

Lion songs

 

 

 

 

 

Insect hums

Yellow bugs

Little ants that crawl

Buttercup

Syrup cup

Put your ass against the wall

 

 

 

Where has all my money gone

How have I mis-tread

All I know

Is you’re the one

That’s trapped inside my head


 

 

 

Applause, applause. They loved it. Jolly good show. I love a pop banger~ this empowers me to imagine new futures thanks 😊 #hope #optimism

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