My Body, My Protest: After Mon Laferte

In silence, I stand

Nipples bared and bowed

To the bravery of the stolen

Of the forgotten voices

Of the raped

Of the tortured

Of those killed in the name of freedom

 

I bare my body

I surrender this suit

I plaster truth

I carve it into the bones of me

Until the world hears

 

En Chile torturan violan y matan.

 

“In Chile they torture, rape and kill.”

Commentary: My Body, My Protest (After Mon Laferte)

The story behind the poem My Body, My Protest, begins with me stumbling into bed at 4:30am, slightly (or not so slightly) intoxicated after a night out dancing. I was doing the habitual scroll through my Instagram timeline when I came across an E! News post detailing the events occurring at the Latin Grammy’s. This is where I first saw Mon Laferte’s political red carpet protest moment, where she completely bares her chest to strategically raise awareness of the grotesque acts of police brutality taking place in Chile right now.

Chile is currently experiencing a season of political unrest as thousands exercise their political right to protest. Protesters are taking to the streets to express their fury at the establishment and are demanding social reforms to address the high levels of inequality the country is experiencing.

Here is a useful link for more details on what is happening/has happened in Chile during the protests:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-50512093?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/topics/c452lzylemmt/chile-protests&link_location=live-reporting-story 

In summary, 22 people have been killed as a result of excessive police force, while thousands have been seriously injured, tortured and/or sexually assaulted. These are absolutely abhorrent acts of injustice and I was profoundly moved by this whole situation, compelling me to write something about it then and there. I deeply admire Mon Laferte for using her platform to raise awareness of the human rights abuses that are happening all over the world. Mon Laferte reminded us all that our bodies are not merely sexual tools, they are powerful vessels – holding, giving and supporting life.

Here Mon Laferte chose to use her body to express a significant message. She utilised the power of the naked female form to highlight our human right to protest, to challenge norms, to shake systems, to change the world.

Gethsemane

There will be times you are at your lowest points

When anguish engulfs you and there is nowhere left to run

And the words of our loved ones fall flat, hallow

 

No one can meet you in this darkness

And the support will seem lack lustre

Will seem disingenuous

Will be flawed

And you retreat within, in solitude

Praying away this poison chalice

This cup of suffering

In a manic display

Until your legs give way and succumb

To the gravity of surrender

 

And then

Beyond the unrest

Beyond the disquiet of your anxiety

The starring of the still small voice

Overtakes you to reveal

 

“Beyond this pain

Beyond this bitter suffering

And far beyond what your mind can perceive

Lays a promise, a hope,

A purpose for all that be

Rooted in my immeasurable love

 

And, oh, how I love you,

Cherished one

One day you will see

The glory and the splendour

Of an eternity with me.”

 

And as these words leave me

Some things do stay

Like the peace that passeth understanding

To guide me on my way.

Look Within

It’s not here

The Fear that plagues you

The Love that binds you

The Desire that drives you

 

It’s not here

The mechanisms of love

The barriers you place around it

The romantic illusions that pollute it

The myths that mask you from the truth

 

It’s not here

The saving grace

The divine light

Blazing away sorrows history

From your veins, from your veins

 

It’s not here

In that powdery embrace

A nose full, a mouth full,

a forbidden pharmacy

 

It’s not here

In that liquid luck

And all the ways you try to orchestrate your own destruction

It’s not here

It’s not here

It’s not here

 

 

Look within.

The New Year

Here’s to us

Making it this far

Another year closing

And as we dust down those resolutions

Reviewing the messes we’ve made

The triumphs we’ve tasted

Taking a shot for every disappointment

And dancing in the ember of the past

Reveling in the victory of all we’ve overcome

 

Nothing can compare to this strength

This evolving

And surviving the torture of our cocoons

For now we emerge

Glittering and ready

For all this year has in store,

And more.

 

For all life has in store.

~ In Transition ~

Called by the knowing

The inner whisper from

The timeless

To a timezone

Where seconds melt away

And potential burns through

The transition

The disquiet

That follows one passing phase

Into another

 

With all of life

Brimming and bubbling in the bones of you

Here births the realised dream

The magnetised pull

To the future you

That is already fulfilled

Already the dazzling wonder

You feel so vividly in the distance

 

One you are with this dream

And all future yous

Living fully

In the present

Amplified

 

No substance truly annihilates forsaken pain

No chemical can cure the crash

Crash

Crash

Of a shattering heart

Breaking

On the floor of your chest

The bleeding,

The agony,

It cannot be avoided

Numbed, perhaps

But that is like

Walking bare foot

Over the shards of your own heart

Pretending the wounds aren’t there

Pretending

That the pieces

Of your once whole heart

Aren’t now festering inside of you

Like a malignant lump

No longer beating

But bleeding

Seeping through every crevice of your soul

Until you are utterly consumed

 

Neglected pain

Cannot be numbed by illegal substances

That promise of temporal joy

Temporal escape

Temporal release

Because as the substance leaves you

And your plane lands

And you feel yourself descending

Down a very deep hole

The pain will greet you there

That misery you left on stand by

On hold

Because life got in the way

 

But I know, love

This world is still cruel to the kindest of souls

And life doesn’t stop

Life doesn’t give way

Life doesn’t allow you to process this pain away – naturally

 

So we drink it away,

We smoke it away,

We love it away

But when your plane lands

And you feel yourself descending

Down a very deep hole

The pain will greet you there

Larger than before

So do not expect it to whisper

Do not expect it to meet you conveniently

Expect the room where your pain resides to be empty

Cleared of any redeeming quality

So when the chorus of your pain takes to the mic

Expect its volume, its power to be

Amplified