punctum // issue 1

a queer zine which looks at the intersections of desire and abjection, of fashion and flora, of queerness and cycles, of poetry and image

“rose is a rose is a rose is a rose”

– Gertrude Stein

she of course referred to things being always as they are, but what if a rose was not just a rose? just like a flower we wear ideology as our clothing — desire starts from the centre unwinding — and forms the armour we wear in front of others

a curious petal falls from the fabric — and another! there are ravenous petals, petals in the wind, gendered petals, petals as a doormat, thirsty petals, rose petal jam on your morning toast, poisonous petals, petals alone in the woods, scheming petals, generous petals, sweet-smelling petals, euphoric petals, petals where a bee rests, dysphoric petals, petals in your pocket, petals on your lips, petals only in memory

petals at your funeral, metaphorical petals, frozen petals, longing petals, petals on the bed, noisy petals, technicolor petals, petals as shelter, wounded petals, preserved petals, petals lost in your hair

petal rainfall, sharp petals, petals on your wedding day, utopian petals, hopeful petals, scorched petals, porcelain petals, haunted petals, coveted petals, decayed petals, petals put back into the soil

“[the abject] lies there, quite close, but it cannot be assimilated. It beseeches, worries, and fascinates desire, which, nevertheless, does not let itself be seduced. apprehensive, desire turns aside; sickened, it rejects.”

– Julia Kristeva

too often, people dress themselves in a hegemonic style of empowerment where only the pretty feel desirable

opposite desire is the abject —

there is power in existing as an outsider, in enrobing your identity with sticks and stones used to hurt you

the abject echoes in memory, twists and turns through touch and feel, granting a glimpse into pieces of you thought to be lost

queerness resides in the physical distance between desire and abjection, of feeling rooted to the past but yearning for an impossible future

fashion itself is a temporal conduit, giving hegemonic desire a chance to twist and decay and to give the abject a sense of stability

“as the sweetapple reddens on a high branch

high on the highest branch and the applepickers forgot —

no, not forgot: were unable to reach”

– Sappho

desire reaches across a triangle — there is always the lover, the beloved, and that which comes between them. this distance cannot be negated

can only be unclothed and analyzed

what can be found in the distance between two bodies about to touch? kept distant by flesh, by cloth, and thus necessarily by ideology

will you find your body is a soft night robe dripping romantically to the floor? perhaps it’s a decaying tree, gazing across the horizon for a brighter tomorrow

our bodies not only reach towards others, but through our choices and actions across time. ponder what your future/past can hold across the reach