I am dressed too warmly for this place. Still deciding whether to strip or leave, I am told if I stay in one place I’ll increase the years of my life two-fold. Shall I pay a decade’s risks to multiply the years that weigh the end of the branch ’til it dips low with heavy blooms of slowness? Will you trade the fat of your youth for bones like air to smear the remainder in one ever-thinning but gorgeously long stroke? There’s a permanent option that won’t roost. It watches with the sun, aging us layer by layer of dermal rest until our bones are warm enough to imagine needs outside of center city hearths. My food, my medicine, my work, my transport. I smilingly forget my name and still ask to be fed.
Now my accomplishments do lope, from side to side, shifting weights for progress as a gambler’s pockets peel and drain. But still you won’t. That name, did you forget to pass it back? These credentials, I know, might act as the complex ridges of a key to lay a face you wouldn’t mind servicing. But it is only my shadow that wishes to touch you, and my teeth, deciding a shadow’s business is not their own, have clen- ched and will not slip a syllable from their ranks’ array. Silent and passing, mistake me for you neighbor if it feels better to you.
I will walk until my breasts grow so long I trip and throw them across my shoulder, bound to my back for ease of carry with all my other needs and distinguishing marks. That name, I’ve decided, you can keep it. Run it in to the ground. I’ll catch a new name like the fast swimmer who trails a snapped line from the hook in her mouth. The catch can catch. Which audacity will earn me my title? Call me by my scar, my cruelty, my predilection for fish. The water’s bad, but water me anyway.
– Emily Shinada
All images by Simon Vogel & Courtesy of DREI, Köln / Cologne
HAYLEY AVIVA SILVERMAN WILLA NASATIR
Jan 30, 2015 – Mar 12, 2016