Parallel Inventions


[the technology used to create both a gun

silencer and a car muffler are similar enough that

they were invented parallel to each other]


a consideration of other parallels:

two ex-partners, different religions, tell me

their origin stories: brain waifs itself. body

follows. depression wears my lovers’

faces as masks. both ex-partners talk

with their hands about their prophets.

both ex-partners believe in a god-

knowledge that strengthens with practice--


senior year of high school i both shoot

a gun and get into a car accident. the night   

my car revolv[er]ed around another’s i

consumed smoke until i was a muffled god--

god of the third story window-panes and

an ex-partner’s eyes / wide, spinning /

every mouth like looking down a gun-barrel,

begging me to be quieter / muffled / my

friends’ hands over my yell / the cops

will come / you’ll get us all caught--


summer before senior year of university

i am arrested / caught, perhaps / and my car

tires slashed. this is the summer i watch

two ex-partners, different regions, arrested

on live-stream. their wrists / cuffed, silenced /

the cops’ guns loud / a car barrels through

a protest and a woman / dies and in jail,

i imagine my partners also / in jail / later,

he tells me solitary confinement gives him

nothing to do but build flowers out of toilet

paper. the guards noticed / yelled, muffled /

his small gods’ loud metaphor--


after i am released i am still pulled over

on a cop’s lies. i snap loud / i know my

rights / and i am given a ticket for this

/ honesty / that night my lover and i

smoke weed in my bathroom / quiet,

jeweled / our mouths swelling / our gods

listening / we discuss trans gun clubs.

how many trans people do you know who

own a gun? trick question-- not enough.

how many trans people do you think

would have survived the cops if they too

owned guns? trick answer-- impossible

to calculate. an infinite amount. that number

goes on forever. okay another one--




how many poets do you know

who have been arrested? trick question--

not enough. how many artists do you know

who smoke pot? trick answer-- all of them.

how many car accidents have you survived?

all of them. how many do you have left?

not enough. to live through? to die inside of--


okay another one-- how many dead

poets do you know? all of them. how

many gods do you know? not enough.

maybe i just don’t know what god looks

like. maybe i thought she was a joint but

really she was a car crash. maybe

the dude who crashed into my car was

just high. i’ve also been broken before.

i know disaster in my own language--


[the gun silencer and car muffler were

created parallel to each other due to their

similar technologies. the concept of cops

and the concept of arrest were created

parallel to each other due to their indistinguishable

praxis. the concept of being jailed and the

concept of being in a relationship were created

parallel to each other because i have had both

things happen to me and i’m still paying for it.


the concept of being god and the concept of

being poetry were created parallel to each

other because of their similar technologies.

the car accident functions as god. the jail

functions as poetry. the relationship functions

as a gun. the gun functions as god. the poetry

functions as a relationship. the car accident

or arrest happens and a trans person writes

a poem in which both of them are compared to

previous partners. i am broken [up with]


and i write / again / about the first severance.

about the first god. about the first time i caught

something parallel to poetry before it escaped]