On Ruins
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When it comes down to it, we can all use a little ruin in our lives.

a poem

On Ruins

We like to queue upfor cake to stand on thesteady of father lover's famereduced to we're an institutionwe used to boo while Morrissey singsand there's never forlorn time to addressthe problems        climb on them, friends, swapthe conquerroar it requires assistance by donkeyram or llamas even better Palamino middle aged goldmake the sweetest our future honeymoon crisis bring memore E, a modicum of oblivion, our lives could always usea little ruin and a little more than last time, the same time, somesometime, harvest that rainfall for a tea we brew homestead completethe new civilizations come into being or sabotage the good ones not thebanished ones you come hither onto like Greece on the Mayflower the otheredcontinental lightened like your morning coffeecake        Lightening shadows we jabopen fisting knowing elbows blowhard punchlines come back blood clots come back,pubic hair more custom made against the very subway tile mosaic I cry sacrifice in yourwife's arms blame the film about the Hungarian dog rebellion where everyone dies whatdoes it feel like when the feelings come upchuck your riches or the goods you manufacture thecoiling threadbare acknowledgement of those that deep clean and those that pay for the cleaning

a polemic

There is something maximalistically fabulous and freeing in the layering upon layering in queer aesthetic productions, and in the luscious ways it embarrasses the forms that attempt to contain it. It is an undoing. To embarrass the bureaucratically embedded, the violently mundane becomes divine right through this undoing, even and especially when the canvas remains free of ink, oil, or the lymphatic traces of a body in transit, in precarity. For when the unfathomable transpires, the [End Page 269] most tragic productions of queerness that lose their material efficacy still reveal the neoliberal avarices that undergird them; we the animals can see who is waiting in the shadows of a gutted Fruitvale warehouse to strike down new conditions of possibility.

Take the reading of poetry—that which takes place in public, how it presents itself as performative gesture. When poets such as Angel Dominguez, Emji Spero, and Lucas de Lima enact the ancestral seizure by donning hut-like straw gowns, moonsurface jewels, and face paint, inhabiting the glitter bomb we send to enemies in the reading of hypotaxis-treated lines, sonic-privileged textual embers, and narratives abstracted and corroded in critical code. It is in these climacteric moments that queerness provides the elixir to temper the jokes we make in half-jest about which Gringpoet might opt to read the inaugural poem for the North American Nazi ascendancy.

Now even more so: as of this writing the dawn of a new fascist era happens upon us, brazenly inviting a third and final world war to do us all in. Foundations might as well hand over their role in philanthrocapitalism to artists now, since money won't matter anymore. What is the disciplinary impulse to be contained when history is playing us, setting thirst traps all over the place? [End Page 270]

Raquel Gutiérrez

RAQUEL GUTIÉRREZ is a poet and essayist pursuing her MFA degree in poetry at the University of Arizona. Born and raised in Los Angeles, she writes about space and institutionality and publishes chapbooks by queers of color with the tiny press Econo Textual Objects, established in 2014. Her work has found homes in Huizache, The Portland Review, Los Angeles Weekly, GLQ: Gay and Lesbian Quarterly and Entropy. She received an MA in Performance Studies from New York University and a BA in Journalism and Central American Studies from California State University at Northridge.

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