We Play a History of Hiding Aunties, Hiding Uncles

Jason Magabo Perez  
We believe the world to be temporary. We are always nervous about being and suicide. We believe in aftermath of disaster: from leaf light to heavy, a burnt place where we are less ourselves and somewhat in love. We have heard rumors about this city—the awe, the result, time and smoke waking the public, heavy with liquor, the alluded dead there searching the lynched. Today, the plastic: wakes by the river—where daughters and sons drowned, this script of rumors about this city. We hold secrets of cousins and know aunties, the impossible other: of tilapia and tamarind, hair under water, recently shot homie in transit, on a curb, in velvet, freezing, homie’s home now benches. Allegedly, we are the ones who have crucified this sun, this water, and the neighborhood now smells eaten because of locusts, and Lola finds poems and prophesy about residents, migrants brutalized. Call aunties, call uncles, for apartments! Call aunties, call uncles, for green cards! Call aunties, call uncles, for families! This morning, stabbed in robbery, a story to believe in purple, aunties and uncles here: communion of collected night smoke—always the mist, popular, an opening, a bite down. We play a history of hiding aunties, hiding uncles, sleepless, our refused cousins, the refuse under the deepness of this city.

Jason Magabo Perez is Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies at California State University San Marcos He is author of This is for the mostless (WordTech Editions 2017), the current Artist-in-Residence at Center for Art and Thought and inaugural Community Arts Fellow at Bulosan Center.