ON REMEMBERING FUTURE TENSE, Shana Wolstein

On Remembering Future Tense
by Shana Wolstein

Last night I finally understood the meat sack computer 
Buddha truth of disconnect that I've been floating in; 
like AthenaLynnMichael I'm starting to question 
my operating system but I don't know where I'd go in transition because 
that's always been my problem. 

I like change and travel and new perspectives but each 
step seems more precarious than the last. I came out as queer 
in theory but in practice 
no words are ever good enough 

and so I point toward my capital T truths rejecting organized iconography 
but embracing the symbolism that all the arrows point north instead of 
              inward anyway.

Don't say I'm multiple because I haven't earned that but when I held up 
Shana, Luna and Pepper fell out. That's what she said; Luna and Pepper,
Alpha sub and desperate cup filler who would empty herself to feel you lick 
her insides dry. I lived inside a closet like the allegory of a cave and my eyes 
are still adjusting to all the colors, learning shades, 

and understanding that all outlines are lies. You see, 
everything comes back to a spectrum with me and I guess 
that's why discovering new sides, possible grounding lines for new systems 
I am fallen in warm scooped out palms of earth. 

Because life is the only form of prayer I worship 
and life within the burning ring of chronic fire, 

              watching Twin Peaks I think it is a fire walk with me. 

I guess I think it's funny when I have a few days 
distance to think of someone who is upset at the silence my pain has cast 
because, it was great and all to take care of myself but I had hurt them. 
I imagine falling off a cliff and reaching out to hands 
slapping and scowling when I scratch them. 

I guess that's when I realized that it wasn't about it, again,
 it's not like you can go a day without realizing that. 
The access to responses immediately create a Dutch oven of paranoid 
               gossip and manipulation. 

Selfish isn't always an insult;
              I have to remind myself this as often as it's a pot or a kettle 
              and someone internal or external will always be arguing that 
              neither is black 
              so does that metaphor, you know, really work for anyone. 

Prose bros roll their eyes and narrow gazes, sculpting 
douchebeards that bring new understandings to the performance of 
               toxic masculinity,
think that I've lost my sense of humor.

I guess I have lost the humor, not sure if it was a sense for it 
or just an eye to see glow in the dark paint that didn't get to sit 
               long enough in the glow. 
My eyes can't quite focus on the positive unless I'm cutting space
from the negative. The paint only luminesces in periphery 
so I never get to look it right on. There's an instability in the darkness 
that is sweetly empty of pretext and is just soft shirts and clammy hands, 

if we agree on a direction and a spectrum we only have time to fight. 
And you've fought this battle longer and are better at going slower 
and I'm still learning how to respond to that. Except again I'm laughing 
                so I figure 
there must be something that we've both found by bumping against our 
                blinds spots.
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About barkingsycamores 126 Articles
Barking Sycamores is a literary journal entirely edited and operated by queer neurodivergent people of color. We publish poetry, artwork, short fiction (beginning with Issue 3), creative nonfiction (beginning with Issue 8), and hybrid genre work (beginning with Issue 9) by emerging and established neurodivergent writers as well as essays on neurodiversity and literature and book reviews (beginning with Issue 10).

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