“what i thought i heard you say...” : the synthesis of an interview with nikos and juao

popularly conceived of as a wound,
we pick the scab of this portrayed flesh
what will it bleed, this supposed alien child of abandon and exploit?
do we dare loosen the crusted surface;
cast off the portrait of ruin that protects it,
revealing its subcutaneous truths,
making it vulnerable?
the crust builds under our nails as we pick,
begins to crumble and fall away
and the revelations beneath emerge to gather in our sights,
half-formed clouds of suggested thought
and we stand in awe of what we think we see
we float above our bodies, as in a dream
watching ourselves, watching the wound shift shape
(we should photograph this moment
frame by frame, we think,
but our fingers are frozen in air
trapped in the viscous of the ethics we confess)
with our toes, we work to switch on a spotlight
and rely on our mouths to memorize
the living nature of other people’s dreams revealing themselves to us
what we once saw as a wound has changed to become a portal
and we are pulled inside by the tug of our own hopes,
though we try desperately to deny
the expectations and dreams
that we have for the future of this child,
inside of which we now float
we promised ourselves we would not romanticize what we found,
that we would not mediate the spectacle of the pain of others,
so as not to impose the typical gaze
so as not to subjugate the hopes of others to our own ethos
but those promises seem mute
because what we see through this temporary opening is humanity
and where there is humanity, naturally, there is pain
and where pain, death
and where death, a beginning
as well as an ending
and we realize this ending is for our old selves
as the portal closes, we know we can never go back
we can only move through to exit at a point yet unknown
while we each shift our shapes in discomfort
so that we might proceed
to the other side
to the over there
we go forward, not having colonized
but having been colonized
by the seeds of hope
that we now know,
can only germinate in darkness

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