I wrote this piece just about four years ago when asked to do a reading for Literary Pop: Apocalypse I wrote it because fuck! and I needed to remind myself of what we as Queer, Trans, Gender non-binary, Disabled, Black & Brown & Femme have already survived. I needed to remind myself of the skills we acquired in this. I needed to remind myself again tonight so I’m sharing it here. In the rereading of this piece I see how I still had so much hope that together we would find away. I’m sure if I had written this today I would not have been so kind. I’m so angry at the cost of these survival tools. How our medicines we make to survive the lie of white supremacy gets taken from our hands, reprocessed and sold back to us at a higher price. I may have to revisit this and rewrite it someday.
TW:violence to marginalized community
Dear Cis-gender, Heteronormative, Able Bodied , White People, their enablers and those who voted for Trump,
Welcome to the Apocalypse!
We’ve been keeping it warm for you.
Underneath your seat you will find a survival kit prepackaged for you by queer, Black & Brown folk with various degrees of “physical capabilities “.
This survival kit is free to you of course but has been purchased at the high cost of spilt blood, broken bones, rape, genocide, colonialism, human experimentation, gentrification, chemical warfare and revisionist history.
Welcome to the apocalypse!
Despite 95% of the depictions of said apocalypse in the current and past media (written or in film) the apocalypse will be intersectional and diverse.
Brad Pitt will not be making an appearance.
Mark Walhberg will not descend from the heavens to save you.
There will be no dancing with wolves or blue aliens
Mel Gibson will not drive that tanker. He’s been uninvited for being Anti-Semitic.
Tom Cruise is not available for groundhog like shenanigans to fix this pearshaped situation that (let’s face it) you created yourselves.
Neither Buffy Sanders nor Hillary Clinton will save you.
The apocalypse will be,
will continue to be
intersectional and diverse as it has always been
From disabled community you observe:
-How to navigate space that were not made with you in mind
-How to fight for access to the second floor
-How to make medicines without money
-How to achieve what others told you was impossible while being blasted with condescending remarks and thoughtless language
Qualifications: Surviving an inadequate health care system that seeks to destroy you, being denied access because it’s an “inconvenience” and being applauded and romanticized by able bodied people when choosing assisted suicide.
From Black and Brown people you will observe:
-How To forget “fair” and what it means to be ten times as good and reap nothing in return
-How to take this nothingness in hand and weave it into a yawning expanse of stars
-How to maintain dignity when they judge on first sight, when they shoot you with bullets and firehoses
-How excellence equals death
Qualifications: Surviving old slavery and the new slavery of the prison industrial complex, mission style genocide, the papal bull of domination, manifest destiny, preserving culture despite appropriation, whitewashing and death by police.
From queer community you will observe:
-How to fight for equal rights
-How to watch your back even in the bathroom
-How to process demonization, mind altering therapy, shame, guilt that isn’t yours
-The importance or moving in established groups for safety
Qualifications:Russia, H8, gas chambers and economic disparity, continuing to be who you are despite death threats and murders gone unpunished yet celebrated, carrying on in pride while uplifting those silenced by suicide.
From women/femmes you will observe:
-How to deal in a world that does not see your body as your own
-How to walk with grace and compassion through a minefield littered with bombs of aggression, judgment, unfair wages, body policing, gas lighting and mental/emotional warfare
-How to establish movements for massive change while receiving little to no thanks or economic support
Qualifications: Every damn day.
These are our terms:
-Forget the lies your teacher told you
-Thoroughly purge yourself of the white savior rhetoric
-Divest immediately from the illusion of your individuality
-Leave your stagnant guilt at the door and love
Not the song singing love
Not the hand holding love
A love that makes you place your own body between the threat and the one you protect
A love that does the impossible
A love that bleeds
These are our terms:
Forgo all privileges stolen from our slaughtered forefathers
There will be no more silent waiting for them to show at the door of those you claim you care about
There will be no more aversion of eyes
There will be no more polite politic free dinners
You will not be peaceful
You will not submit
You will not run away
Even when I say I do not trust you, even when I say you are unworthy, even when I say you’ve hurt me
You will prove your allegiance
You will prove your dedication
You will pass through yourself and only the US will remain
You will be part of a collective community of one heart and mind or you will succumb to a fate of your own making
a poisoned, waterless, searing grave.
These are our terms
Sign your name
It’s going to be a bumpy ride