I fear my words might be asking the same thing:
how to resist closure, how to display my sensibility
the sensuousness on starched pages and have it speak
to the concerns of my sisters and future children.
to desire to either fix or destabilize my own name.
I fear my poems argue for identity, to burn their own
brandings when spoken aloud but are too young
to know what they are. that they will come to me
one day from the shore drained of self no longer able to
speak the right tongue but what else should I expect
from this black body/white body/mixed-up confused body
who was never in the mind of Ginsberg’s generation
destroyed by madness as he said in 1956. I fear the empty
fix I’m looking for will tie me down forever to that old bag
of tricks called choosing against context. I know that same
context drenched in history will come lash me with fire,
the types of fire that do not speak of love but would sober up
even Bukowski and the jazz poets is an unforgiving rattling
of bones. I fear those bones will be mine, anonymous,
underground and silenced, that I will be made into
an anonymous poem, that the myth of every document
signed anonymous being a woman is true and so I must wait
in the old style for the other to understand each line. these lines
frontlines in my hands in another language another sea pouring out
into a river as praisesong. it is not that I fear walking across water
but that the water may erase others’
marks on the sand.
Questions and Answers
What inspired “anon”?
The double entendre of “anon” — to signify both anonymity and a continued sense of displacement, as a result of being just “another writer” in history. I think it also speaks to the more subdued discourse of women writers in general, and especially of those who identify as women of colour. There is a sense of triumph, however, in that every writer in a sense gets to rewrite that same history.
What poetic techniques did you use in “anon”?
Free-flowing language, lack of punctuation; stream-of-consciousness, if you will.