Sunday, December 2, 2007

I wonder, for how long she can eat nothing
why there's nothing she will eat except herself
or, except pills, one by one
two by two
one by one

I know only how to go
two by two
one by one

Saturday, July 28, 2007


Another old piece of prose from camp. This one's kinda gross, really. 

*triggers for gross mentions of feet, and other stuff*

I am a piece of toenail. If I swallowed myself, I would feel myself scratch against my esophagus, and my tongue would scream the taste of toe. I am a piece of sharp shell that once was alive and a part of me. When the sun comes out, toenails dance and separate themselves, leaving behind deserted homes: the empty, bloody sockets. But toenails are dead, perpetually death. They are a piece of life that failed and grew into a protective death-shell. Nothing tastes good on fifteen-year-old toenails; not mayonnaise, not guacamole, not whipped cream.
I am broken and ragged and sharp, a fragment of my shattered toe. I will visit reality, piece by piece. Life will mean more than broken nails. The world must accept this and refuse to put up with toe stubbing. Nails can hold the world together. Caked blood seals the crack between the fifteen-year-old toenail and the world.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Sticky situations.

I've been working through this story-telling sort of thing. This is about as far as I've gotten thus far. I wrote it about 3 years ago, probably some point in the summer of 2004, although I unfortunately didn't put the date on it.

TW for sexual assault

Feedback? (ok, so on an invisible blog I won't get any. But perchance?)

They always teach you at school how to be street-smart. What to do in a “sticky situation”. Everybody gets back their test papers at the end of the safety unit in health class; everybody’s passed, and even done really well. They’ve all filled in the blanks correctly: they know how to act, what to do, what to say. The teacher heaves  a sigh of relief. Another group of students headed off into the big scary world, and none of them would get into trouble, right? No, of course they won’t, the teacher assures herself; they all got an A on their test papers.
If only real life was about filling in the blanks.
Funny. I got an A in health class, and look where it’s landed me. No less lost than if I hadn’t taken the class at all. Maybe more lost. As I lie here and write this, I wonder how I’ll make it through the week; the weekend gave me just enough time alone to realize how scared I am. And everything I’m feeling right now goes against everything I’ve learned.

Let’s jump back to last September. I was your typical grade nine student; a little overwhelmed at the reality of being in high school, knowing that it was time to get a boyfriend, get into trouble, and that sort of thing. That was what everybody else did, right?
I met him at lunch, my third week at that school. All of my friend were off at a club that I hadn’t joined, and I was all alone. He came up to my table; he thought I was my twin sister, who he had met a couple of days earlier, and we started talking. He was a really sweet, great, funny guy, and pretty good-looking too. In fact, he was a model. He showed me some of his pictures. Without that spattering of acne he wore that day, this guy was gorgeous. Just for laughs, he showed me his driver’s license photo, which was very different from his modeling headshots. I knew, after seeing these photos, that I’d found a goldmine of a guy. Not only was he a model, but he was eighteen, and could drive!
From then on, he always joined me and my friends at our lunch table. One of my friends seemed just as infatuated with him as I was; she was always flirting with him. She had a better sense of humour than I did, and my sister was prettier. Still, even though he always joked around and flirted with them more, I was the one he always liked to talk to. Oddly, one of my other friends never spoke around him. Back then, I was really confused by this, but now I know that she knew something we never noticed; he wanted more than your average guy.
As the semester went on, we began to talk less and less about real stuff, and he started telling me more and more dirty jokes. We had used to talk about philosophy, and that sort of stuff, a lot; having just had a mental breakdown, I was really interested in the meaning of life. But philosophy was all over with him; that just wasn’t what he was interested in anymore.
By November, all he ever wanted to talk about was his sex fantasies, particularly one where he’d use strawberries and whipped cream as a sex toy with a helpless virgin. He seemed to like the whole ‘damsel in distress’ sort of idea. I found these fantasies to be rather disturbing, so I stopped hanging out with him. I started to spend my lunch hours in a corner of the library doing homework with my friends. I ate my lunch as quickly as I could in the bathroom, just before class started. I gave him the cold shoulder in the halls between classes. I didn’t want to tell him that I didn’t like the way he talked; he’d think I was being a baby.
In February, I turned fifteen. I guess he thought that this made a real difference to how I would feel and act, because he started following me around again. I found this to be a little weird, but I really couldn’t care less. He was just another boy who liked me; creepier than some, sure, but after all, he did go to my school. I wouldn’t tell him where I lived or anything; I wasn’t that stupid. But he couldn’t do anything to me while we were at school, so I considered myself to be safe.
Safe from what, I don’t know. It never even bothered me that much that he persistently followed me, not even when, every so often, he would sneak up and grab me from behind. He’d just sort of pounce on me, then laugh. I never really expected it, and I’d generally shriek or squeal a little. He thought that this meant that I liked it, although I really really didn’t.
It was only when he started to try to grab my chest or reach down my pants that I realized that things were really wrong.

Sunday, July 15, 2007


One of the key equity notions this year was giving agency, countering hegemonic oppression, thingification, and the erasure of history. When, then, do we keep referring to people with the term “bodies?” Yes, we are discussing oppression as it relates to how one’s body is treated and perceived, and this term recognizes the power of oppression that is perpetrated based on simple physical characteristics.
I feel, however, that this term works against a lot of what we strive for. It is a form of synecdoche, reducing people to their bodies. Without recognizing the individual who lives in a body, what is the point of doing this work? If people talked about my body, rather than about me as a whole person, I would feel medicalized and stripped of my identity.
Talking about people in relation to their bodies removes their histories, which are only complete when the human details – perceptions, thoughts, emotions – are included. If violence is committed against a body, regardless of its characteristics, it is a benign event. “Body” is just an object. As a word, it does not imply humanity. Bodies do not resist, because they are objects, not subjects. We talk about bodies passively, as though they do not belong to people who feel fear, pain, and anger. The body may be a physical manifestation of humanity, but it is not humanity itself.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

An old monologue

I wrote this at camp a couple years ago. Didn't post it online because it seemed...threatening, or something. It's totally fiction, don't worry. It was part of our stage combat scene. I was a character called Melissa, who was being bullied by her friends. Even though real-life-me sometimes wished I could be this bold...don't worry. I'm too sensible for that :)

I can’t stand them anymore. Get a boyfriend. Do my homework. Your clothes are ugly. Get a life. Yeah right. I like my clothes, I don’t want a boyfriend, why in God’s name would I do their homework? And I have a life. It’s just not like their lives. I’m myself. Sometimes I dream of just charging them with a big, huge stick. That would do it, right?

But the thing is, I’m not like that. When have I ever stood up for myself before? I never stand up for myself. I’ve lived here all my life in this house, and I don’t remember even begging to repaint my room. Yeah, I’m that boring. My room’s white and smooth – like a bathroom. I’m more green. They say I should be more pink, or baby blue. They say, they say, they say. I don’t care what they say anymore. People always said that I’d never learn to read and write, just because when I was little I was more interested in drawing pictures. But I learned. And now I do homework for my classmates. Go figure.

Yeah, I did it. I’m not going to say that I didn’t. I killed them, and honestly, I don’t fucking care. But you can call the police, they’ll come and arrest me, and I won’t tell them a thing.

Oh, you’re afraid of seeing your daughter’s face all smashed when you go upstairs? Well, at least you care. If you were a grown-up clone of her, you wouldn’t care about her face, you’d care about her fingernails. They were pink before. Silvery pink. For prom. Now they’re red with the blood that came from her eyes when I strangled her.

I hope you don’t care about your daughter. No, screw that, I hope you DO care. Then you can feel bad about raising such a psychotic monster. Fuck, now she’s not even a girl anymore. Just a mass of skin and hair and blood, with the devil’s eyes bugging out from between bits of blue skin. Go look. I dare you.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Bandaid solutions...

I wrote this in 2005, and just found it now. Kinda sad, now. And less real now.

I can feel it here. On my arms and shoulders, not in my head where the memories hurt, or the rest of my body, or anywhere else. Just here.
It’s easier like this – bandaids, blood, long sleeves. You can’t put a bandaid on your memories to make them go away; they haven’t invented that kind of brain surgery yet. You can’t bandage up my mouth to make the bad taste leave it. But you can clean up your arms, take care of yourself. Weird, just attacking myself more, but it’s the only real way to live my life; let it leak out with my blood, then smother it in a bandaid until it isn’t even real anymore; it’s not emotion, it’s matter. It’s blood. And it’s leaking out of me this way. I can talk like this for hours, because it isn’t really me. It’s a haunted voice in a bleeding broken body without a future. The real me went down the toilet with the bloody towel that I didn’t want anybody to see. The real me isn’t here anymore, this voice isn’t mine. The real me went somewhere, one day, into another world where it can enjoy things, and it left this flat and fractured soul in this bleeding, broken body on the earth to suffer but refuse to feel. Maybe the real me will come back to that body once the scars have faded away and the stars come out to replace them.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

I've kinda been going for gore in my poetry lately

*trigger warning for blood*

Welcome to Ramat Aviv
April 27th, 2007

Twelve stories below my new apartment
Jet lag blurring and smothering my eyelids
A woman with her head covered
Is bent in front of the grocery store.
Her head turned away from the unintelligible script.
She is a piece of difference
A curiosity for eight year old eyes
Out of place in this
Suburban confusion.
I avert my gaze
Ashamed to be staring
And find my eyes locked
On a cat, its guts spilled
Across the driveway.
I wonder if I have moved to
A land of secrets,
Hidden stares,
And spilled but unnoticed blood.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

The Masada Complex

And now, laaaadeeeeeeze and gentlemen...something completely different.

This one's a tad more academic. I've been studying for my exams and this is somewhat inspired by my anger over a reasonably famous book which I think is seriously wrong in a serious number of ways.


Thomas Friendman argues in his book, The World is Flat, that the world has been “flattened” – that is, placed on a level playing field – by various “flatteners” that are arguably causes and effects of the progressing “phenomenon” of globalization.
But in what way is this world flat? The playing field isn’t level; instead, I would liken it to Masada, an archaeological formation in Israel that was a fortress for Israelis who were pursued by the Romans thousands of years ago. As the Romans attempted to climb Masada by building a dirt ramp to scale its heights, the Jews decided that death would be preferable to rapture by the Romans, and committed suicide.

The world’s elite and privileged – predominantly educated citizens, mostly white and English-speaking from developed former colonial powers, or rapidly industrializing countries that are molding their economies to fit a neoliberal standard – are now on top of a hypothetical Masada. They claim that the playing field is level because they have little view of the reality below.

The Jews’ fears of Roman capture may have been unwarranted, and their mass suicide certainly was premature. Upon modern examination, it is clear that, at the time of the mass suicide, the feared Roman victory over Masada was years away. The modern privileged forces who drive and benefit from globalization are in a state of self deception, similar to that of the Jews on Masada. They fear the ascent of individuals in the developing world, feeling that those who are currently disadvantaged will rise economically and rob the elite of their privilege. The loss of jobs in manufacturing, most prominently in the auto manufacturing sector, has made workers’ unions a major source of criticism of globalization from the Global North.

Like the Jews, the privileged of the Global North are hardly threatened by the ascent of others onto their “Masada.” They have already prevented the Global South from infringing on their standard of living through colonial rule that robbed the Global South of indigenous knowledges and the means to survive independently. Unlike the Jews, however, the response of the privileged to the invasion of the less privileged onto “Masada” is not self destruction, but instead destruction of the Other. Rather than committing mass suicide, the privileged are condemning and disenfranchising the perceived threat through the use of neoliberal, neocolonial economic policies that essentially remove the dirt from the ramp that those in developing countries are using in their hard work to reach Masada, and place this direct on top of Masada to make the plateau higher.

The real Masada is now no more than a tourist attraction that is at risk of collapsing due to erosion, but the neoliberal Masada of economic globalization in a neocolonial world is getting taller each day through the use of structural adjustment programs, flawed and fraudulent aid programs, and the global rule of corporations that decrease living and working conditions in the south in exchange for profits for the north, control the pharmaceutical industry and undermine efforts that support global health, and degrade the environment at the expense of those who are already marginalized.

Will the global Masada become merely a piece of historic memory, and an example of mounting inequality in the 21st century? Maybe someday. Perhaps it will eventually crumble altogether, and exist only as a myth of the past, a story of a time in which humanity existed in a hierarchy with some lives more valued than others. Whatever happens, until that hierarchy is erased and our Masada is razed, the world will never be flat.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Sometimes the World Ends

I've had this blog for four years now. Which means four years since, well, other things.

But that's not important today, because there are more awful things happening today that invaded my head and ricocheted off the insides of my skull and swirled into a poem of sorts.

Sometimes the World Ends
April 16th, 2007

Sometimes the world ends.
Twenty-one, now twenty-two died today
Pain building up with each number they say
Young names we’ll read at next year’s Kol Nidre.
Yes, sometimes the world ends.

Sometimes the world ends.
A fleet of sirens rush by on TV
Too late to save thirty-two, thirty-three,
Nameless numbers who cry inside me.
Yes, sometimes the world ends.

Sometimes the world ends.
Pierced bodies bleeding beyond our control
Amputated souls in the toilet bowl
Builds into pain from a sharp bullet hole.
Yes, sometimes the world ends.

Sometimes the world ends.
Everyone watches as fear sharp as knives
Rips out the shadow behind anger’s eyes
Sirens go silent, too late to save lives.
Voices are chanting, yes, still I rise
But sometimes the world ends.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Shouldn't have happened...

I’m not against rape because it happened to me. That’s not my point. I’m against rape because it happens, and it’s wrong. I don’t think I’m radical. I think I have the right to be safe and want this right to extend to all women. I shouldn’t matter whether she was already drunk, already naked, already dating him, even already fucking him.
It shouldn’t matter if she reports it; I have a right to safety, even if I’m far from brave enough to regurgitate traumatic details of my life to a uniformed stranger and submit to a medical exam to let them extract evidence from my already violated body. It shouldn’t matter if the evidence has been washed away, or if I am in too much pain to talk or let them see my body. I still have the right to safety.
It shouldn’t matter if I flirted, tried to become friends, pretended to be straight. It shouldn’t matter that I used crutches – that makes me no stronger or weaker than any other woman. It shouldn’t matter that the age of consent is fourteen – and I was fifteen. I didn’t consent, but was too hurt to show the bruises that would prove it, still hurting inside from the stitches they used to put me back together.
It shouldn’t hurt anymore; I shouldn’t remember it, be plagued with flashbacks four years later. I shouldn’t be afraid of whipped cream, change rooms, gym benches and tensor bandages. I shouldn’t have a deformed hymen, asymmetry and scarring that I was afraid my girlfriend would see. I shouldn’t be afraid of sex; shouldn’t be afraid of letting someone see my body’s differences where it has been ripped with pain or be afraid of touch which might accidentally sting of a buried memory.

I shouldn’t be afraid or hurt, violated and emptied. Who I am, what I did, and what he did shouldn’t matter.

These shouldn’ts are because it shouldn’t have happened.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007


Easter is in the air
I breathe in the musty smell of spring
And as a Jew
I don’t think of Jesus.

Easter is in the supermarkets
I survey the boxes of Easter eggs
Strangely placed in the Kosher food aisle
And puzzle at the depiction
Of rabbits who lay eggs.

Easter is in my body
A sinking feeling as it approaches
Teasing memories out of my mind.

Easter is in my footsteps
As I scurry from the bus stop
Head cocked over my shoulder
Waiting and afraid.

Easter is within me
Grabbing from behind
Forcing, thrusting, penetrating
Refusing to let go.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

International Women's Day!

I posted on this a couple of years ago. But hey, it never gets least, it won't until we have equal rights.  Happy IWD, friends and non-existent readers!

International women’s day is an important symbol of women’s rights. It is a validation of our existence and growing power – yet, at the same time, it is a recognition of the power we do not have but desperately need to have. It is also, increasingly, an expression of international solidarity, where women demonstrate the international connections in feminism and women’s issues, rather than just rallies and events held in enough countries to merit the label “international”
IWD is important for girls as well. Girls need to recognize their voices, and refuse to be subsumed into silence and the hypocritical realm of popular culture. As a student at a feminist school, IWD was recognized and celebrated, and the biggest event of the year. It took this celebration for granted. During my first year attending public high school, a male student repeatedly harassed me but I assumed that this was normal. The harassment had progressed into minor forms of sexual assault by International Women’s Day. My school didn’t recognize the day at all. I was one of few students who knew it existed. It felt like nobody cared, and that violence against girls at my school was assumed to be normal. I never told about the harassment and assault, because I thought that nobody would listen or care.
Thirty-six days later he brutally attacked me at school, and still it felt like nobody was listening. We need to recognize IWD so that we show girls that women matter. Feminism is normal. Violence is not.

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Queerness, gender, grammar

Grammatical structures really influence how language is perceived as derogatory, offensive, etc. For example, calling me “queer” as an adjective doesn’t bug me, but yet “a queer” seems offensive – it is as though it is using “queer” as a noun, turning me into a different species, or an “other.”
Using it as a noun makes it seem like this is the only thing about m – that this specific characteristic is the sole defining factor in my identity. Using it as an adjective makes it more open to inserting other identities, and recognizes that I am more than just queer.

I guess this is why I don’t like the word “lesbian.” Interesting, though, that nouns like “man” and “woman” don’t hold the same power, to me.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

I wish I could hug her and tell her that she's not the only one who isn't going to sleep tonight; it's events like this that bring back the past.

But still, the fact that the past is flooding back means that it's something that can disappear for a while, months, even. I wish I could tell her that; yes, it always follows you, and some nights it's crushing you, but eventually you can put it in a back pocket and live your life.

I don't know her, but can you all keep her in your thoughts tonight?