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Serena Martinez

Queering the Intangible

cup your fingers together in a makeshift sieve, 

that babies in baths lose time trying to sort out. 


scoop the granules of my form 

only to re deposit themin a random careless toss

that leaves my fate up to the wind. 


choke the shapeof air from my barely wet spinning formand watch me end upcracked and unsymmetrical in the practice pile. 


serve my confirmatory confusionon a metaphorical platter

then use it to duck for cover

when damp drops attack

alongside the smell of freshly darkened stone, 


wipe your slippery friendly foes

across my breast

because nothing is true unless it is seen transforming reality. 


rip my nude nerves againstbark’s unnatural nature

until it smells like overly ambitious children on a playground, 


except mistakes don’t get soothed with ice cream anymore 

because I’m now supposed to knowwhat danger looks like. 


dip your entire arm in paint meant to signify

an integral part of a wholebut end up discarding excessive remnants down the drain 

alongside water with the tap off. 


suck me and my absence deep into your deoxygenated puppet 

wiggle your toes knowing you can do so becauseI lie in your blood,

not as a disease 

but as an antidote. 

understand that sensation signifies the remnants of presence 


I need not be permanent 

to be found. 


Amen, Sir/Ma'am

"This was a self portrait photo series I did titled Amen, Sir/Ma’am. Amen, Sir/Ma'am emboldens the concept of idyllic worship, whether tangible or theoretical, especially in relation to identity performance and perception. I tapped into worship through three different avenues: the kinky worship of a dominant from their submissive, the religious worship of a deity, and the worship or desire of “post” transition transgender euphoria. In this self portrait, I kneel submissively at the altar of gender confusion while physically in a literal closet. I am wearing a mismatched collection of gender confused clothing items and assuming positions that embody both gender euphoria and dysphoria. In an effort to diverge from any binary understanding of identity, there are generally several ghosts of contradicting emotions relaying the gendered confusion of transition — transition as a never ending performance of the theatre of gender rather than a journey with an endpoint. Any eye contact made with the camera places the dominant/omnipresent/gender affirming power in the hands of the viewer. This is especially relevant for gender considering the conflicting narrative of how one internally identifies versus external visual perception of their gendered performance — both might not align completely."

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