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Featured in Flare Magazine

April 10th, 2015 § 1 comment § permalink

I’m in the April issue of Flare Magazine showcasing the places I love in Montreal. ;o) I was contacted through Instagram. I didn’t understand why they wanted to feature me—PhD student, feminist, outspoken politics, images of menstruation, and so on— until I saw the issue themed “all about women by women.”  I also got to shout out my mom as my style icon (which is true!) She said she cried when she read it. It’s on newsstands for a few more days. I also got to wear my own clothes, and the whole Montreal team was really cool & supportive. Being inside working 24/7 makes experiences like these a welcome treat. Big up to Flare for wanting to feature nerdy awkward women like me. *Please note that I would never call my hood Mile-Ex, that was an editorial decision I didn’t see until it was published.

2015-04-10 11.51.43

You’re hurting me,

October 2nd, 2014 § 3 comments § permalink

I tell myself.

 

kr-1-5 kr-1-4 kr-1-3 kr-1-2 kr-1 gr-1

(photos from an exhibition in Krakow & from a ferry in Greece, 2014).

 

“We’re undone by each other”

March 25th, 2014 § 0 comments § permalink

“Let’s face it. We’re undone by each other. And if we’re not, we’re missing something. If this seems so clearly the case with grief, it is only because it was already the case with desire. One does not always stay intact.” -Judith Butler

I have notebooks of desire sealed up in cardboard boxes instead of under my pillows like children’s stories. I have pieces of paper torn between magazines and books and beds across countries. I take screen shots of your messages in case I lose them. Who are you anyway? I make up a man from many men, because there’s no man for me. Acupuncture has inadvertently made me stop smoking. The thought images compound when I try to ‘clear’ my mind, laying on my back unable to move as the needles will tug at my wrist muscles with a sensation that my hands could rip off my arms at any moment. So I avoid that. That used to be smoking. Sitting smoking scribing. But the notebooks are sealed up now, the Mexican cigarette boxes fallen behind my clothes, and there’s nothing to write about.

coffee-1-17 coffee-1-16 coffee-1-13coffee-1-19coffee-1-21 coffee-1-20coffee-1-22

 

Birthday, oh scorpio woman, you wounded brightness…

November 13th, 2013 § 1 comment § permalink

It’s my birthday on November 16.

This birthday—nothing makes sense, smashed to bits, devastated, whatever — but there will be a party! There’s always a #dancecats party with me around.

Maybe I don’t deserve an uncomplicated life listening to J Dilla with a husband collaborator academic artist, children, cats & matching bicycles. Or maybe it’s because those who want me I’ve outlived? That’s probably why I haven’t written anything interesting in this blog other than academic updates in so long. But am I doing a clever job covering up the pain? does it seem like I’m getting shit done? Because I don’t feel it at all. But maybe you read my memory project and read things like this:

Longing for our fumbling fingers the first time our hands met each other.

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Mexico, te extraño mucho de menos. Muestra señales de vida, querida.

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Fatal error: Allowed memory size of 103809024 bytes exhausted (tried to allocate 261900 bytes) in /nfs/c02/h08/mnt/20797/domains/raisecain.net/html/ndxzstudio/common.php on line 304

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I watch him sleep between the layers of white bed sheets and trace the world on his exposed shoulders down to his left arm up to mine. It is all I can do as goodbye.

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He walks in with a careful step. His hug envelopes me completely. First it’s the ribs, then the arms, then the face. “My M—, oh, you need some energy.”
His girlfriend nods in agreement.
I can feel his fingers over my emaciated flesh as they push between my ribs.
“You look sickly, I am worried.”
I think I should be but I’m not. I stand proud with bags holding up my eyes.

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I stood still in the rain waiting for him. A wounded brightness among his doubt.

Affections turned into experiences.

But, for real, are you out there G-d? Can I just have some peace? A little bit? Like even for a year or two? Just slow & steady happiness? I was putting in so much effort. Why did no one warn me that it was in all the wrong ways? I’m learning, I’m learning, I scream, but I’m reminded I’ve outlived the efforts.

I’m the most productive when in love and having sex all the time. Everything comes easy. I don’t need much sleep. I wake up happy & ready. My mind is sharp & my eyes are clear.

Since I can’t have what I really want, bring me poems. I just want poetry, poems, poems, never ending poetry for my birthday. I want Erica Jong, Anne Sexton, Warsan Shire, Wislawa Szymborska, George Eliot Clark, Mary Oliver, Czesław Miłosz, Rumi, Hafiz, Adrienne Rich, Anne Boyer, Margaret Atwood, Sara Teasdale, Keats, Saul Williams, Allen Ginsberg, Sylvia Plath, Sanyu Kisaka, Sharon Olds, bell hooks, new poets, new poems, your poems, your words … give me the words of all the pain and desire in the world and let me live.

PS. This is my work lately…

(Why) do we care about sharpness and quality? (2013)

Self-portrait (2011/2013)

Save for Web “0” quality, 15 times.

JPG | 10.73K | 3 sec @56.6Kbps

September 2013 so far…

September 16th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

A 5521 kilometer-long open wound the salty ocean won’t let scar

“Wild tongues can’t be tamed, they can only be cut out” —Gloria Anzaldúa

My Top 3 #lastfm Artists: Julianna Barwick (35), Slow Dancing Society (28) & Lubomyr Melnyk (19)

Your art/work is what makes me hold on & admire you. I’m in awe of the chance of experiencing the vast unknown w/in your work —with you.

Olfactory memory, how your tentacles suffocate me so tender

Brazilian jazz you make my love my body —Flora Purim, Airto Moreira, Astrud Gilberto …

Staying home to read poetry. Staying home to learn new words to love you with.

Chile’s made some great poets—Pablo Neruda: “As if you were on fire from within. / The moon lives in the lining of your skin.”

London, chasing light with you has been a pleasure / The moments our speeds cross paths I burst with energy & love for you with me.

My Top 3 #lastfm Artists: Lubomyr Melnyk (24), Slow Dancing Society (21) & Austra (21)

i’m eating a squash/spinach salad & drinking a gluten free beer I snuck in at the club in Brixton while everyone dances to drum’n’bass in Brixton

The sun bouncing around the English countryside & through my train window, hello there

“We are each other’s orientation devices. We self-alienate in relating by recognizing the other as both that which grabs us and that which turns us away and into the world.”

Lancaster, your tender sunset & wind out my window are so lovely. Thank you.

Attempts at sleep with music on headphones when not having slept for a really long time always imparts amorous beguiling images.

Love as responsibility towards the Other.

Where is my Colonel Sanders & his magic of “Abbreviating Sensory Processing of Continuos Information” ?

bouge, bouge, bouge

May 23rd, 2013 § 1 comment § permalink

As a result of the draconian measures during the QUEBEC STUDENT STRIKE — One year ago today I was kettled, arrested and humiliated on a STM bus that served as a makeshift holding cell for the 400+ of us that were kettled on the corner of St-Denis and Sherbrooke, a Montreal corner I have not been able to move past since then. Surely, the kettle of that many people did not just happen because of some thrown rocks or whatever else kind of vandalism the SVPM (Service de Police de la Ville de Montréal) made up to justify innocent protestors to get arrested. To kettle that many people takes planning, organization and impeccable timing. It also requires a lot of moles. At this point I had been going to many day and night marches, wore my red square with pride and engaged in many intense debates and negotiations with my university and colleagues on the issue.

I wrote a reflection on the strike “Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams” and had a photo essay “#Casserolesencours St-Henri” in open wi: journal of mobile media, a special two-issue edition which I co-edited with Kim Sawchuk, Alison Loader, Owen Chapman and Ben Spencer. I also co-edited a special issue of Transmutations journal, in which I have a sound piece collab with Dave Madden called “The nocturnal sound moves of the Quebec Student Strike” that came out of a paper “The Nocturnal Sounds of 2012 Quebec Student Strike: Experiencing Protest as a Plurality of Resistances” I presented at the Sound & Dissent symposium at Concordia 1 February 2013. I’m presenting another version of this paper in Lancaster, UK at the Mobility Futures conference, and hope to publish it following that feedback. I also had a long-form interview on the CBC “As it Happens”, a spot on CTV, CKUT roundtable and Guardian UK interview discussing my arrest. Clearly, the student strike has inscribed my body and my artistic and scholarly practice in endless ways…

The story I wrote regarding my arrest was published in n+1: montreal diaries (all the photos are mine too) and open wi: journal of mobile media is below.

Detention on St-Denis
May 27, 2012

The night I am arrested is a warm spring night, the thirtieth night of continuous protests to be exact. It’s the day after the May 22 rally that inspired over 200,000 people to walk through the streets of Montreal. My friend Paul and I are riding our bikes in the demo. We talk about the people around us, their families, their children; about how happy we are, how incredible it is to be marching here, and how much we love the city. The crowd moves fast. Unlike the other nights we’ve marched, which felt tense and uncomfortable, tonight is jovial and vibrant.

We get off our bikes at Rue St-Denis. Boom! We hear a blast, and a cloud of smoke hovers over the intersection. I’m not sure where we are. People start running toward me.

“Get your fucking bike out of the way!”

I try to run north on St-Denis in the direction of the crowd, but they start to head toward me, pushing me back. I yell for Paul. “Please don’t leave,” I say, as we both try to maneuver our bikes northwest, but there’s no getting them above the high curb and through the throng of bodies. North of us are two rows of Montreal police (Service de Police de la Ville de Montréal, or SVPM). We’re turning around to go back down when the tear gas grips the back of my throat. I wrap my shawl around my nose and mouth, scrambling and anxious, wondering what the fuck is going on. I feel like I’m going in a circle. Suddenly the police are charging us, and I try to run the other way, but the bike is unwieldy and I’m nervous I will lose Paul. The cops start shoving from the other side, and every time I turn my head there are more cops with masks and shields lunging toward us, smoke hanging overhead, until there’s no way out. Then it starts again: “MOVE, MOVE, MOVE, MARCHE, MARCHE.” So we move, but more cops on the other side are shouting the same thing from the other direction. I hold onto Paul’s arm, unable to think, dizzy from tear gas and anxiety, my heart pounding through my rib cage. Every time I move one way, I am pushed back the other way. I tighten my shawl for fear of more tear gas and can hardly stand. We ask the cops if we can lock our bikes to a stand. We beg enough that they concede, and then promptly shove us back into the streets. I imagine this may be the last time I see my bicycle.

“What’s happening?” I ask.

“I think we were just kettled,” Paul says.

“What? No, after the G20, they’re not allowed to do that.”

“Oh, I think they just did.”

I don’t believe him.

We stand around for a while. I tweet uncertainties. Everyone is milling about in a circle. People start shouting chants about freedom and civil liberties. Eventually most of us sit down.

I sit in silence, staring at everyone around me. Their faces are at ease, comfortable.

“What do you think is going to happen?”

“I don’t know—they’ll probably arrest us.”

“They can’t arrest us all . . . there’s so many of us.”

“Sure they can,” Paul says, and walks off.

I let him go and stay on the curb, hugging my knees to my chest, waiting. When Paul comes back, I tell him to sit beside me. We watch a makeshift football game with a ball made out of a plastic bottle.

Paul notes that several public buses have arrived.

“Why?” I ask.

“To transport us.”

People start getting up, and I hear a police officer announcing something.

“ . . . anything you say may be used against you in a court of law. . .”

“The cats!” I suddenly remember.

“Yes?”

“I left them without food because I’m trying to put them on a diet!”

“Can you call any friends to feed them?”

“I will call my superintendent, but it’s so late, and what will I say? I got arrested, will you please feed my cats?”

“We should line up,” Paul says to me. “Imagine how long it’s going to take to process everyone. If we line up now, we’ll get out earlier.”

I grab his shoulder as he leads me up to the front, where some elderly people are already in line. I am nervous. There’s so much misinformation about where we’re going, where we will be held, what we are getting arrested for, and whether Bill 78 will be enacted. No one seems to know and the cops say something different every time.

I walk up.

“Do you have ID?”

“Yes,” I reply as one of the cops searches my bag.

“What a mess in there,” he mutters in French to his colleague.

They find my ID, search me, grab my shoulders to turn me around, and handcuff my wrists together.

Two policemen walk me to the line by the bus, holding my purse, and wait until it’s my turn to get on. They write down my identification information and give me a wristband with a number to claim my purse later. I sit down and wait. The bus fills up with people younger than me. Then we wait. Eventually, the bus starts moving and we drive, and drive, and drive. Once in northeast Montreal, we wait some more. The buses become holding cells. I feel sick—tear gas, nausea, and my bladder kicking in. Lightheaded, I ask a cop if I can go to the bathroom. She rolls her eyes and tells me to sit down. I ask again. I wait. I ask the other cops. Each insists that everyone on the bus has to urinate and that, like them, I have to wait.

“What if I pee my pants?”

“Then you have to live with it.”

“So then if I pee on the bus I won’t get in trouble?”

“Go away, you won’t do that.”

I return to my seat but the pain is unbearable.

I crouch down in the middle of the bus and a few women stand around me creating a human shield, while I pull down my leggings with my handcuffed hands –— I piss, and I piss, and I keep pissing until the stream of urine rolls around the bus under everyone’s feet.

“You are brave. Be glad you did that. Fuck ’em.”

I smile sheepishly and appreciate the camaraderie, as the rest of the bus erupts in anger at the police.

“How can you let a woman pee on the bus? How can you treat us like animals?”

“Because you are. Shut up and stay put,” the police shout back, which only causes more yelling.

“A woman peed on the bus! A woman peed on the bus! You should be ashamed!” some of them chant in unison, but the police don’t even turn around to look at us. I watch my piss run back and forth. By now, another man is doing the same thing: flooding the bus with urine. Somehow this makes time pass more quickly. An hour later our bus pulls up to the processing table and a smiling policeman hands me a ticket as the morning sun hits my face.

That night over 400 people were arrested at Sherbrooke Avenue and Rue St-Denis. Most of us were given $634 tickets for breaking the newly revised municipal bylaw P-6, which, among other things, does not allow face coverings, such as the shawl I used, and requires that protest organizers submit exact march routes to the police. Free speech is now only free when the police grant us permission.

woes.

November 8th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

I sheared off my left eyebrow with a nail clipper because I couldn’t find the scissors & now I have a really awkward Dylan McKay.

Soon my Saturn will fully return.

On my last river walk I came across a Jewish Cemetery & took a piece of a broken gravestone dumped on the side of the fence home with me.

Paris (encore, encore)

February 14th, 2011 § 1 comment § permalink

Hey, you! I’m going to Paris to save my life. If you tell me, “oh how romantic… Paris” I will punch you in the mouth, OK?

It’s so boring and obfuscating to talk about Paris as a romantic city. The romantic Paris you think of, is not Paris, it is a fabricated created-by-someone-else fantasy that you believe and play into. Paris doesn’t really belong to itself anymore either, that stopped in the 70s. Most, if not all, Parisians will tell you that.

The day before my flight I am presenting at the Film Studies Association Graduate Colloquium. I am nervous as shit. My paper is scattered and more of a survey than any sort of deep insight I am used to presenting to the world. I will be judged so badly too, because I know all my peers will be there. I don’t know why I let Claudia convince me to submit an abstract (for a paper I hadn’t written no less). Probably because I didn’t think they would choose it, so I dreamed up the fantasy paper I would like to write. I guess I am really excited about my topic, “locative-media” and I possess a fair bit of knowledge about it; it just doesn’t seem to be coming out right now. I have to live with that.

my plane back to nowhere.

August 30th, 2010 § 2 comments § permalink

I am stuffing your mouth
with your promises
and watching you vomit them
out upon my face.”

Anne Sexton wrote that. I’ve blogggged it before. It’s one of the most perfect pieces of words brought together I have ever read so here it is again & again. Amsterdam and its constant downpours are almost over, a few more days until I have to go back to Toronto, and then I fly home (??), fly back to my city where I have no place to live, no potential roommates and the second year of my MA to start/finish. I have no home in Toronto, just memories. Where am I going? Maybe having no place to go opens me up to go anywhere, to have the potential for everything.

The shot of the tree was in France and the plane is from when I visited Shiphol. Now I am here in Jordaan in the centre of Amsterdam. Everything can change in the split of a second, just like that. Words can shatter whole worlds, whole conceptions of knowledge, of what is and what isn’t. Words can do it all but they canot solely repair the damage they are able to do. No, much more than that needs to happen.

Maybe the sun will come out again before I go? Do you know I don’t want to go back, I don’t miss anything in Toronto anymore. I want to stay here, everything makes sense here, my life makes sense here. I am alone a lot and sometimes with some people that maybe will be my friends, they are sweet to me. I have a suitcase, ok I brought two of them, my camera, my Wacom and my laptop. People move across oceans for so many reasons, I have already moved, why do I have to return?  Amsterdam has been so good to me, has nourished me, frustrated me, nearly killed me, but has taught me to give to it too. I love you Amsterdam, I love all you have done for me this summer.

the G20 + I have arrived + Loops Haunt

June 29th, 2010 § 2 comments § permalink

This weekend Toronto unwillingly hosted the G20. Although I have been physically in Amsterdam since Saturday, I have not left Toronto, glued to Twitter and the Internet reading obsessively about everything that is happening from all sides. Reasearching what the G20 actually does(n’t) do, and the history of it all, trying to figure out how easily meaningful discourse about the Summit gets obscured by hysteria from both sides. My write up on being a spectator from abroad is slowly coming to fruition. I need to take a few days to digest my interaction with the Summit almost exclusively online.

I am living with Rico, who runs IChione, and his family for the summer in their attic in Amstelveen. It is strange to have a peer that also has a 14 year old daughter. It is an interesting negotiation for me as a student but also an adult. At 23, Rico was on his way to be an ordained monk but then his daughter was conceived and he realized his way into it could not occur because he’d have to leave them both behind.

Here are some of what I saw yesterday in my new neighbourhood playing around with my UV lens. Flickr.

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MUSIC: Also, a few days ago one of my favorite music people in the world, Loops Haunt, posted a mix called Strange Fruit Vol 1. It has many wonderful old love songs on it. You should download it and have him be in your life too. OK? OH! And I just found out that he’s playing StekkerFest in Utrecht on August 14! I am there! Maybe this special person I know can come too? For his biiiiiirthday?

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