Coffee Island

Exposed brick faces me as I wait for words. I run my hands through hair that feels like summer grass and I chew my fingers

Each nail is stripped of its paint, bright and bitter
For a minute my mind drifts into a memory of spring berries bursting sour in my mouth.
I never could wait for summer to ripen.

I sit in the wooden forest of chained benches on coffee island.
Sitting over rocky pavement and surrounded by roaring concrete I remember the baby bird we nudged towards death.

We chipped away, peeling at the shell with hungry prying fingers, even as the chick lay shuddering and cowered from the light. Relentless in our need to complete the harm, forcing it to hatch faster than I could keep it alive.

The colour are even correct.
Greys of every shade and wood being transformed into ghostly boards at the appallingly slow pace of destruction this intersection of the suburbs and city can handle.

It is here I hide. Watching desperately interested in finding out about each person that walks by.
My cup hides me.
My phone hides me.
My drink hides me.
My gender presentation hides me.
Hides my gaze.
Maybe even something twisted that can feel like power in the shadows.

The chains on the bench at coffee island make a kind of wretched sense that is far too stark to give words to.

As I lie waiting

Remember when the drinks stopped pouring and I came undone?
walking home completely sober limbs pulled apart
concrete under finger nails I dug in desparation
past any point of return
dug a grave shallow so all would see my rot

What prayers were said?
who stood vigil as I returned to earth?
did you sprinkle sand and seeds over my greening grave?

Did you kiss the memory of loving me in the dark?
the softness of my skin seared into your fingertips.
How many tears were shed?
did you count and collect them all?
A quantification of a life lost…
a callous number to round out so much incomplete dreaming…

footsteps never taken
passports never stamped
but so many stolen kisses
So many words bleeding heavy over poorly bound books
purchased in the absence of real direction

grants unfinished
unfollowed up on
without any hope of panning out
effort to what end?

now I am the bones ground away by time
the marrow that feeds worms
the earth
now I wait for the sun

Sweating and Waiting

I rub your face with my sweat slick hands
Hands I sat on and rocked waiting for you to arrive.
Hands that were as cold as they were filled with anticipation.

My ass was cold through thin trousers made of cheap cotton sewed by small children.
Children with big eyes and brown skin.
Children that for a difference of a few years, looked just like me
I smelled my sweat and the cold wind hitting it just so that anyone who came near me would know … “Yes, winter sweat, that is what I am smelling.”
This intermingled with the rusty bench, cold and metal.
These scents existed in a loop my mind traveled across paying attention to each part in a sequence, over and over.

All while waiting.


Fluids fell out of me as I anticipated you.
Your feet stepping on concrete.
The feeling my eyes sent my hands as always imagining caressing your coat when I saw you before burying my hands diving past each layer.
I always sought skin.
I wanted to find where I could feel your life…pulsing and tell you with my fingertips how much I loved you.

I couldn’t with my mouth because it would scare us both but my hands could whisper truths to your spine.
I know your heart would hear.

For now, sweating and waiting.

Tides and Teeth

Terror follows with tides and teeth
Relief is a crumbling in cracked hands
You cannot pray the ocean away
Alive or dead, the water will drown us
Down us
Deliver our bones
Bodies flayed
Bloated and betrayed
In water where there is none

Who is the perfect tension?

Hello my name is Jassie Justice,

I am an Intersex Femme person who is mixed.

I am South Asian and Caribbean. I am mixed.

I am settler living on colonized land known as Toronto, Turtle Island, land of the Haudenosaunee, Anishinaabe, Mississaugas of the New Credit, Huron-Wendat and other Indigenous peoples.

I am living with an invisible disability and I have Complex PTSD.
I am a survivor.

I do facilitation, community education and workshops.

I am a poet, writer, multimedia artist, performance artist, sex worker (on hiatus), a yoga practitioner and theoretician, as well as being deeply committed to understanding and continuing to heal mutually constituted oppressions and trauma.

I resist and fight back with love and passion.

If you would like to connect with me around my work, please contact me via:

iamtheperfecttension@gmail.com

 

Guest Post by Jasbina Misir – How To Be A Good Ally To Sexual Assault Survivors

This is a blog post I wrote on bellejar.ca about my experiences as a historical and recent sexual violence survivor.

Trigger Warnings for sexual violence, sexual assault, rape, childhood sexual violence, and victim blaming.

The Belle Jar

by Jasbina Misir

TW: sexual assault, childhood sexual abuse, victim-blaming

I wanted to share something truly disgusting and awful that happened to me this past Monday.

At 1 AM I was sexually assaulted during a concert. On the dance floor when the crowd rushed the stage. These are all the details I want to and am going to share. I have filed a report with the police and an investigation to catch the assailant is ongoing.

Why am I sharing this? I am sharing this because for me and for many survivors, talking about what happened is a key part of surviving, healing, responding to erasure and silencing. Talking about an assault can be a way for people to get some kind of accountability for what happened, even if that accountability only ever comes in the form of speaking their truth.

I’ve heard people say that talking about sexual violence experience is…

View original post 1,404 more words

Affirming the exquisite sensitivity

To my dreamy rain lovers, thunder chasers, lightning jumpers.
To my watery mer folx.
To the dreamers and air dancers twisting in the wind.
As we cry rivers and fill oceans, fly in the night on sighs, and dream dream dream in gossamer
Your love is real.
Your tears.
Your tender beating heart aching for so much felt.
Real.
Valid.
Your truth.
You are not irrational.
You are a celebration of feeling.
You are so so much.
Thank you.

The depth of my love, loneliness, and humanity

As i wander through this city thinking, thinking, thinking, I realize a few things in part.

I run to this ideal of beauty that I feel my body betrays because I am so lonely and starving for intimacy.
Like all of us I want to be held, affirmed, loved by someone I feel connection to.

I realize though as I disocciate and fall out of panic…I am me.
Everything I often want to burn out of my brain are some of my greatest gifts.

I am lonely and human. I am a writer even if I struggle daily to write…
I am a bleeding heart sewn roughly to a sleeve of a shirt I want to tear off.

This bleeding heart is my humanity and my ability to love.

On Being Water

I am an ocean.
I am rivers, estuaries, and seas.
I am moving living water.

I flow, dive, soar up towards the sky and exist with a kind of freedom beyond words that demands so much if you watch.

Rain I am rain.
I am relentless, pounding, and shimmering.

Water that cycles and lives.
Moves and loves.

That is me.