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The Brooklyn Rail

APR 2019

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APR 2019 Issue
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The "about to happen" / "poetry as forces" when Cecilia Vicuña says that the lies (the words, the language) of the Chilean dictatorship murdered & tortured thousands of people I remember the power of the word & i remember the power of poetry—"made of forces"—that holds something in the action of language—material consequences can occur—not always—literal action is necessary but the line between language & action no longer feels quite as precise as the street vs. the aftermath, an emergence of literature—unrestrained

i ask questions like

how to weaponize my own body

or what's left of it

how do we weaponize our selves

how to weaponize the poem words as weapons1

give the poem teeth

overflow its vacancies

with sharpnesses

momentary, transitory

criminal aesthetics

an unpublished sketch

of affinities

explicit revenge fantasy

& pride orgy

accumulation becomes

a book

a constellation of bruises

a blockade

a dance party

on the freeway

alongside, from

within, erupting

out of

we sharpen

our teeth

& make attempts

glass breaking



  1. Italics from Cecilia Vicuña's reading 2/12/2019 at Hauser & Wirth


Andrea Abi-Karam

ANDREA ABI-KARAM is an arab-american genderqueer punk poet-performer cyborg, writing on the art of killing bros, the intricacies of cyborg bodies, trauma & delayed healing. Their chapbook, THE AFTERMATH (Commune Editions, 2016), attempts to queer Fanon’s vision of how poetry fails to inspire revolution. Simone White selected Andrea’s second assemblage Villainy for forthcoming publication with Les Figues. They toured with Sister Spit March 2018 & are hype to live in New York. EXTRATRANSMISSION is their first book.


The Brooklyn Rail

APR 2019

All Issues