Friday, March 20, 2015

On Kenneth Goldsmith’s Reading of Michael Brown’s Autopsy Report

On Kenneth Goldsmith’s Reading of Michael Brown’s Autopsy Report

The death of
black and brown people is Conceptual
to most white folks,
little more than a blank canvas
to splatter shades of red on.

The performance of autopsy
has the distinct rhythm of supremacy,
the heart of whiteness,
and bones of victims turned blue
from being submerged for far too long.

There is no I here, nor you, nor us, only IT
and even it is abstracted,
stripped of
all emotion, marrow and sinew
until all that remains
is a “text,”
a body
riddled with bullets
but lacking breath, and so there for the taking,
and profiting off of.

Kenneth! Wake up!
Michael Brown is not a “dry text,”
nor is Ferguson, Missouri
a place you can simply annex
and tuck away for use
in your ever expanding
literary wastelands.

I grieve. Kenneth, I grieve.
I reflect, resist, and re-envision,
but above all else,
I grieve.
My blood, like yours, is still tainted.
It struggles to remain red
In the face of an endless onslaught
Of Red White and Blue.
are nation full of white Houdini’s,
endlessly devising ways
for escaping responsibility,
all the while
remaining handcuffed
to our forgotten,
banished, selves.

I grieve, Kenneth.
I grieve. I grieve. I grieve.
I grieve in order to drown
this whole damned Project,
(the one that does things
like turn
the deaths of black and brown people
Conceptual Art)
in tears.
I grieve to drown IT in tears.
Once and for all.

Nathan Greenwood Thompson
March 20, 2015

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Creative Writing the Dharma by nathan thompson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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