Monthly Archives: February 2012

Get rid of old words – this is beauty


How To Make Love to a Trans Person

by Gabe Moses

Forget the images you’ve learned to attach
To words like cock and clit,
Chest and breasts.
Break those words open
Like a paramedic cracking ribs
To pump blood through a failing heart.
Push your hands inside.
Get them messy.
Scratch new definitions on the bones.

Get rid of the old words altogether.
Make up new words.
Call it a click or a ditto.
Call it the sound he makes
When you brush your hand against it through his jeans,
When you can hear his heart knocking on the back of his teeth
And every cell in his body is breathing.
Make the arch of her back a language
Name the hollows of each of her vertebrae
When they catch pools of sweat
Like rainwater in a row of paper cups
Align your teeth with this alphabet of her spine
So every word is weighted with the salt of her.

When you peel layers of clothing from his skin
Do not act as though you are changing dressings on a trauma patient
Even though it’s highly likely that you are.
Do not ask if she’s “had the surgery.”
Do not tell him that the needlepoint bruises on his thighs look like they hurt
If you are being offered a body
That has already been laid upon an altar of surgical steel
A sacrifice to whatever gods govern bodies
That come with some assembly required
Whatever you do,
Do not say that the carefully sculpted landscape
Bordered by rocky ridges of scar tissue
Looks almost natural.

If she offers you breastbone
Aching to carve soft fruit from its branches
Though there may be more tissue in the lining of her bra
Than the flesh that rises to meet itLet her ripen in your hands.
Imagine if she’d lost those swells to cancer,
A car accident instead of an accident of genetics
Would you think of her as less a woman then?
Then think of her as no less one now.

If he offers you a thumb-sized sprout of muscle
Reaching toward you when you kiss him
Like it wants to go deep enough inside you
To scratch his name on the bottom of your heart
Hold it as if it can-
In your hand, in your mouth
Inside the nest of your pelvic bones.
Though his skin may hardly do more than brush yours,
You will feel him deeper than you think.

Realize that bodies are only a fraction of who we are
They’re just oddly-shaped vessels for hearts
And honestly, they can barely contain us
We strain at their seams with every breath we take
We are all pulse and sweat,
Tissue and nerve ending
We are programmed to grope and fumble until we get it right.
Bodies have been learning each other forever.
It’s what bodies do.
They are grab bags of parts
And half the fun is figuring out
All the different ways we can fit them together;
All the different uses for hipbones and hands,
Tongues and teeth;
All the ways to car-crash our bodies beautiful.
But we could never forget how to use our hearts
Even if we tried.
That’s the important part.
They’ve got this.
Don’t worry about the bodies.
Continue reading

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today is YOUR day

Admittedly, the people in the video are pretty lame, but my love for this poem allows me to go beyond that. Dr Seuss’ books were the first things I ever read, and I’d like to think it set me up pretty well. This poem is the best thing to make you feel like anything is possible, and even if things don’t work out, you will get through them

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As I am not currently at home, I do not have access to the books I intend to write about. I will, however, set out a list of five of my favourite books to give the reader an idea of what I will be writing about;

  1. Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
  2. The Perks of being a Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky (the film is coming out soon!)
  3. Gravity’s Rainbow – Thomas Pynchon
  4. Anything by Ian McEwan
  5. EE Cummings’ Poetry

May have to amend this when my bookshelf is back in front of me….


I could spend hours trawling through literary tattoos. They combine two of my favourite things; books and art. Although I don’t have a tattoo at the moment, I think that if I did it would definitely be words, probably a quote from a book. This one is probably my favourite, partly due to it’s simplicity, and partly because as I have already mentioned, Kerouac is one of my favourite writers.

By way of an introduction…

I thought an explanation of the title would be an okay place to start. Not great, but okay. It’s a combination of Alice in Wonderland, where the cat helpfully points out that “we’re all mad in here” and Jack Kerouac’s On the Road, his commonly quoted passage which is perhaps one of the most inspiring writing I have ever read so I’m going to put in full;

“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!”

Many accuse books of being boring, but the energy present within this passage proves to me anything but. A love to read is an endless search for new stories, characters, ideas and words. Imagining my pile of unread books, or the extensive number of poems and plays I have yet to read fills me with hope and anticipation. I also think that part of the beauty of literature is the desire to talk about it with people, and that is part of why I have started this tumblr. I wanted a place to talk about the books I am interested in, as well a place to post the gems I find on the internet so be prepared for the occasional picture of tasty food, a Wes Anderson reference or anything else that takes my fancy. But mainly books.

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