In an interview about the opening to YOU DA ONE, Jennifer Tamayo said, “I wasn’t thinking anything. When I wrote this—what would later become the ‘Table of Contents’ for YOU DA ONE—I was trying to not think anything.” She goes on, however, to explain how difficult it was for her to not think anything. How instead that lead to her thinking everything, and creating this poetry as a spine for both thinking and unthinking, imagining the excess between desire and immigration. This process of attempting to not think anything and instead thinking everything at once very much resonated with me, as someone who struggles to clear the mind or shut out thoughts in any capacity. When I write I sometimes fear that there is no point to what I am writing, because it seems jumbled and tangled up in too many thoughts and emotions. And so feeling at home in the prompt, think everything but pretend you are thinking no things, I wrote these potential body paragraphs for the table of contents provided by Tamayo.
IV. IF YOU, THE FATHER, IS THE DEATH OF ALL THINGS, YOU LACK AT ME & FEEL NARCISSUS
You will be the death of all things, as a father. Bringing bodies into the world and molding their spines into sludge spines be all end all. Your foot beds numb to the ground, you touch with your eyes on my back. If your body on mine, a month no six ago, maybe more. Abandon me please. You lack not gingerly but with blunt force at me and roll me between your greased palms. Do not resuscitate! I do not want to my bones cannot be resuscitated because this route of plastic sacks filled with broken glass, green and blue and too much, and rocks, braids, dust from under my bed. I used to think I wanted to know what your frown tastes like but I do not anymore. Instead I want to know what is the amount of water you can hold in your palms. I want to look into that pools and plays with the bees nests honeystuck to my scalp wildcare and it is hot enough still to lap up the pavement.
LIII. CAN I HOLD YOUR GENITALS LIKE A MIRROR—AGAIN, NARCISSUS
Can I hold your genitals like a mirror? I broke mine yesterday. Not my genitals but the mirror. And I will need a replacement because I want to look into the place from which I was pinched and fall in love with myself because that should happen at some point. My body is ears and ears dripping from my skin ears but I cannot hear anything over everything leaking from. Like this continent clicking beneath my fingers that prove reality but also liquify. Again, DO NOT RESUSCITATE! Do not be apologies and brown sugar eyes because you are negligent just and I carry a knife just. In case you try to suck me through a straw I told you no, honey. That is a road that you cannot go down on, subvert my excess & your disgust. This is neither science nor pornography but rather a place at which you should soak in my clawfoot tub amidst the hummingbirds and flat beer. I broke my mirror and need a replacement perversion that seizes my name from out your mouth out your genitals I broke my mirror.
A. I AM AS PRETTY AS I COULD HAVE BEEN SO THANK YOU FOR YOUR FACE
Thank you for your face and something else but I lost that thought like I lost my car keys this morning and you do not give me hope of ever remembering. You used to dress me like a woman flowercunted & crosslegged, my face & my face. Just to get me out of the door hand-me-downs and it used to drive me to carve my name over into the wall and then run my tongue in the uneven, splintered grooves. Are you a butterfly but one that can remember being a caterpillar maybe? I see your face in mine and everywhere but not in the fireplace, question mark because there are eyes in the fireplace and they like my freckles and this table top because it looks like sound. Just lean on my pretty elbows, the ones strung up on the clothesline, because again, narcissus, I am as pretty as I could have ever been and so fuck you and your face.