Cease and Desist
Masturbatory fantasies are not the province of your mother,
Nor are tall, libidinal dynasties any subdistrict corrupted by
A member of kin who would wreck them with both hands.
Stop: this is the hour of night where you pull the sarung
To your head and sit tight, in the knowledge that you are alone
And a woman lies, eyes closed, hot beat from warm climates,
Thinking of how your mouth works. One million acres of skin
Is not a plantation. Stop: here, the crossroads between
What they want the whole of my cells to birth between
Your legs, and the void of calm that rests and will rest there.
Stop: this is your breakfast in fourteen hours. Noodles and
One fried egg; in its succulence, suppleness, your breasts
And hers. Now stop: this is not a televised broadcast
Interruptus, by powerful men in the same tailored shirts,
The same tight sorrows. Stop: this is where we shift
Ourselves on a ship, eyes tight to frayed hands, malicious
Cocks cast overboard, scheme-mongering women and men
Drowned first, and all it is is a boat ashore now, home where
Participation in love is no medal-strewn land, it’s a quiet
Place, with only his arms, your past, your future. Safe in any
Possible kind of another’s body. Any possible bodily peace.
open cavern-mouthed anaesthesia salivabeam,
wall of calm ocean.
and handled-thigh ready, searock fists.
you don't need to catch me or breath,
i'm open, come lessen
your need to breathe—
quicken the dense air, eat
all the sundays
after my relapses and yours
week into mine, it's tighter.
and sometimes, there's discounts for the underlings.
there goes dark matter aswirl now, compressed
gravitational waves outside of our windows—
(shh. you're fingering.).
no more distressed.
three orange poems written block-lettered for me,
blot-thick in haze,
then forgets all the words burns the pages.
stay stay large canyon of quiet;
eat plums stained with milk from my palm in ravines,
you do not want to deny this rest,
don't deny body this rest.
[Note: This piece was written to capture a landscape in which people who, like the character in the poem, experience multiple "relapses" or escalations of pain and fatigue within a single day (or whatever your own version is, perhaps emotional escalations, perhaps those of addiction, anxiety, and/or of grief) and navigate personal relationships that are as complex as any, and as unique as any.]
Khairani Barokka. ‘Two Poems’. Queer Southeast Asia: a literary journal of transgressive art Vol. 1. no. 1, October 2016.