here for now



saw-whet owls are very cute

(Source: sniperj0e)

I once told a joke about a straight person.

They came after me in droves.

Each one singing the same:

Don’t fight fire with fire.


What they mean is: Don’t fight fire with anything.

Do not fight fire with water.

Do not fight fire with foam.

Do not evacuate the people.

Do not sound the alarms.

Do not crawl coughing and choking and spluttering to safety.

Do not barricade the door with damp towels.

Do not wave a white flag out of the window.

Do not take the plunge from several storeys up.

Do not shed a tear for your lover trapped behind a wall of flame.

Do not curse the combination of fuel, heat, and oxygen.

Do not ask why the fire fighters are not coming.


When they say: Don’t fight fire with fire.

What they mean is: Stand and burn.

- Stand and Burn by Claudia Boleyn.

Donde no encuentres amor, pasa de largo. Eleonora Duse

Donde no encuentres amor, pasa de largo. Eleonora Duse

On a very common request, some thoughts


If you have any sort of public presence as an Indigenous person, it is very likely that you will be approached for your opinion and help on all manner of issues and projects. At first it might be a little heartening, that people are making an effort to look beyond stereotypes, but from my experience it can start to wear thin, when the time and effort you put into these requests is never reciprocated in any way.

I have had many students contact me to help them with projects, to point them in the right direction in terms of research on specific topics, or even to be interviewed as part of their work. At first I thought that it was obvious and did not need to be stated that I would want to see the final product, but after enough times of never hearing from the person again I made a point of stating this. If I help you with your work, I want to see what you do with what I gave you. Still, in the vast majority of cases, I am not contacted again.

So I address this to the students and professionals who have an interest in Indigenous issues.

Before you contact someone to help you with your work, please consider a few things.

You are asking someone to help you with your project, which is of great benefit to you, but requires the time, energy and expertise of someone who will not necessarily benefit and who undoubtedly has a full-schedule as it is. Consider what it is that you are bringing to the table in such a situation, aside from the desire to not perpetuate stereotypes, or to ‘get better information out there’.

Also please consider why it is you wish to incorporate information so far outside your own base of knowledge, and whether you have the time and resources to do this accurately and respectfully, without requiring an outside expert to do the bulk of the work for you. To do your project justice, you may need to do more than search for a few quotes or pieces of information, and you need to evaluate whether you have the time and interest to do what is required. PARTICULARLY if you are straying into areas of traditional knowledge and culture, even if your interests is purely ‘artistic’. Indigenous cultures are very much based on the concept of reciprocal obligation. Generosity is highly valued, and is expected in return.

Many post-secondary institutions have implemented fairly rigorous ethical standards when conducting research involving Indigenous peoples. You should approach your institution to see what threshold your project/interest meets, and what standard you should adhere to.Do not assume that your work does not trigger these obligations just because no one has made it clear to you that it does.

At the very minimum, in my opinion, is this standard, from the CIHR Guidelines for Health Research Involving Aboriginal People: Research should be of benefit to the community as well as to the researcher.

If you do not know how your work will have a benefit beyond what you are personally getting out of it, then please consider choosing another topic.

We are not textbooks that can be checked out, skimmed for information and hastily acknowledged in a bibliography, if at all. Not even when you ‘just have a few questions’.

ekosi pitama.

To my interpretation, what transpired was a mix of the absurd and the real. It reminded me of the first Boondocks episode where Huey dreams of being the Black kid telling a white and wealthy crowd “Jesus Christ was Black, Ronald Reagan was the Devil, and the government is lying about 9/11.” The party-goers rush into a panic, unable to bare the shattering of their deeply held world-views. He wakes up to his grandfather saying, in essence, “Are you dreaming again about telling white folks the truth?” Later on in the show, Huey actually goes to such a party and, with amazement, his words are met with paternalistic applause and comments like “you’re so articulate!” The message? People of color talking about systems of oppression is a joke. A joke.

- Junot Díaz and the White Gaze | La Respuesta

Vamos a tomar prestada una idea de Nietzsche y definiremos a las personas vitalistas como aquellas que aman la vida no porque están acostumbradas a vivir, sino porque están acostumbradas a amar. Estar acostumbrada a vivir significa que la vida es algo conocido, que sus presencias, sus gestos, sus sucesiones se repiten y ya no sorprenden. Amar la vida porque estamos acostumbradas a vivir es amar lo que ya hemos vivido. En cambio, amar la vida porque estamos acostumbradas a amar no nos remite a una vida repetitiva. Lo que se repite es el impulso por el cual nos unimos a las ideas, a las cosas y a las personas; no podemos vivir sin amar, sin desear, sin dejarnos llevar por el movimiento mismo de la vida. Amar la vida es aquí amar el cambio, la corriente, el movimiento perpetuo. La persona vitalista no ha domesticado la vida con sus costumbres, porque sabe que la vida es mucho más fuerte que una misma.

- Maite Larrauri, El deseo según Deleuze

"Hurricane" by Mary Oliver

It didn’t behave
like anything you had
ever imagined. The wind
tore at the trees, the rain
fell for days slant and hard.
The back of the hand
to everything. I watched 
the trees bow and their leaves fall
and crawl back into the earth.
As though, that was that.
This was one hurricane
I lived through, the other one
was of a different sort, and
lasted longer. Then 
I felt my own leaves giving up and 
falling. The back of the hand to 
everything. But listen now to what happened
to the actual trees;
toward the end of that summer they
pushed new leaves from their stubbed limbs.
It was the wrong season, yes,
but they couldn’t stop. They 
looked like telephone poles and didn’t
care. And after the leaves came
blossoms. For some things
there are no wrong seasons.
which is what I dream of for me.

The body is not an apology.
Let it not be forget-me-not fixed to mattress when night threatens
to leave the room empty as the belly of a crow.
The body is not an apology. Present it not as disassembled rifle
when he has yet to prove himself more than common intruder.
The body is not an apology. Let it not be common as oil, ash, or toilet.
Let it not be small as gravel, stain, or teeth.
Let it not be mountain when it is sand.
Let it not be ocean when it is grass.
Let it not be shaken, flattened, or razed
in contrition.
The body is not an apology. Do not give it as confession,
communion. Do not ask for it to be pardoned as criminal.

The body is not a crime; is not a gun.
The body is not a spill to be contained. It is not
a lost set of keys, a wrong number dialed. It is not
the orange burst of blood to shame white dresses.
The body is not an apology. It is not the unintended granules
of bone beneath wheel. The body is not kill.
It is not unkempt car.
It is not a forgotten appointment.
Do not speak it vulgar.
The body is not soiled. Is not filth to be forgiven.
The body is not an apology. It is not father’s back hand;
is not mother’s dinner late again wrecked jaw howl.
It is not the drunken sorcery of contorting steel round tree.
It is not calamity. The body is not a math test. The body is not a wrong answer.
The body is not a failed class.
You are not failing.

The body is not a cavity; is not hole to be filled, to be yanked out.
It is not a broken thing to be mended, be tossed.
The body is not prison; is not sentence to be served.
It is not pavement; is not prayer.
The body is not an apology.
Do not give the body as gift. Only receive it as such.
The body is not to be prayed for; is to be prayed to.

So, for the evermore tortile tenth grade nose,
For the shower song throat that crackles like a grandfather’s Victrola,
For the spine that never healed; for the lambent heart that didn’t either,
For the sloping pulp of back, hip, belly,
For the errant hairs that rove the face like a pack displaced of wolves.
for the parts we have endeavored to excise.
Blessed be
the cancer, the palsy, the womb that opens like a trap door.
Praise the body in its black jack magic, even in this.
For the razor wire mouth.
For the sweet god ribbon within it.
For the mistake that never was.
For the bend, twist, fall, and rise again,
fall and rise again. For the raising like an obstinate Christ.
For the salvation of a body that bends like a baptismal bowl.
For those who will worship at the lip of this sanctuary.
Praise the body for the body is not an apology.
The body is deity. The body is God. The body is God;
the only righteous love that will never need to say sorry.

- Sonya Renee

I am not the first person you loved.
You are not the first person I looked at
with a mouthful of forevers. We
have both known loss like the sharp edges
of a knife. We have both lived with lips
more scar tissue than skin. Our love came
unannounced in the middle of the night.
Our love came when we’d given up
on asking love to come. I think
that has to be part
of its miracle.
This is how we heal.
I will kiss you like forgiveness. You
will hold me like I’m hope. Our arms
will bandage and we will press promises
between us like flowers in a book.
I will write sonnets to the salt of sweat
on your skin. I will write novels to the scar
of your nose. I will write a dictionary
of all the words I have used trying
to describe the way it feels to have finally,
finally found you.

And I will not be afraid
of your scars.

I know sometimes
it’s still hard to let me see you
in all your cracked perfection,
but please know:
whether it’s the days you burn
more brilliant than the sun
or the nights you collapse into my lap
your body broken into a thousand questions,
you are the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.
I will love you when you are a still day.
I will love you when you are a hurricane.

- Clementine von Radics, “Mouthful of Forevers” (via oofpoetry)

Dec 7

‎”I am not ‘half Japanese’ and ‘half Lithuanian Jewish.” When I’m singing a Japanese folk song, I don’t sing with half my voice, but with my whole voice. When I’m taping together my grandparents’ Jewish marriage contract, worn by time but still resilient, it’s not half of my heart that is moved, but my whole heart. I am complete, and I embody layers of identities that belong together. I am made of layers, not fractions.

- Yumi Thoma

(Source: queergiftedblack)