THE MIXER | COLUMNS
Alarmed by the want of my own body, I touch my form, knowing it as one might the unmistakable presence of an ache, the trembling of the earth, the unfolding of one’s tongue. Yes, if want has a home in the body, it is in the pink of the mouth. I, in my being of desire, have little use for René Descartes, little need for rationalism, for reason. This body, this subjectivity, this speaking “I,” is nothing more than the ocean of my own desires—this body as much me as it is moon, as it is god, as it is pomegranate, as it is you. In this sense, the subject is long dead, the object as much beloved as it is poet. I do not speak of love as an object separate from myself. If the subject, in the stability of his oneness, in the singularity of his want, in his maleness, does indeed speak, then I reject speaking altogether.
Overwhelmed by the weight of my own desires, a want for new language has utterly consumed me. If my desire indeed appears as language, then it is a language unrecognizable. Let its multiplicity manifest as many meanings, as contradiction, as nonsense. Let my mouth be home to hysteria in a world in which the coherence of meaning, of identity, demands desire’s limiting, its lessening. I will speak of my desires as one does a many-faced thing. As the two-headed Janus, as the three-womaned moon of Hecate, Artemis, and Selene, as the Holy Trinity. I will learn from metaphor, become many things at once. Might I know the muchness of your mouth too. Might we speak hysterics to each other, longing as we do through many bodies, through many words of pleasure. You will know I am a being of desire when I go to open my mouth.
With no need for the coherent self, bittersweet Eros nests into open mouths but appears as Hermaphroditus, many gendered and many sexed, knowing the many forms of longing. Might the cosmos be born from bittersweet eros. Might we center the multiplicity of desire in our language. Might I, in touching myself, touch the many faces of desire and let it share with me its many meanings. Speak them, with this tongue.□
This column is by nature bisexual. A literary meeting place between critical theory and poetics, Hysteria, Longing, and the Eros of Open Mouths embraces a multi-genre sensibility as an embodiment of linguistic in-betweens, as a vocalizing of inarticulation. In other words, this column approaches language as it does erotics: fluidly and multiplicatively. Fundamentally an exploration of gender and sexuality, Hysteria orients itself towards the many instances of desire within culture specifically for their deconstruction, for imagining anew the relationship between language, gender, and sex. This column is suspicious of popular gay discourse, LGBTQ+ identity politics, and homonormativity in all its forms. Instead, Hysteria articulates a radical queer politic which advocates for contradiction, abundance, deviancy, complexity, and holisticness, born from the marginality of bisexuality and transgenderism. Ultimately, this column attempts to redefine our relationship to language where cisgenderism, heterosexuality, and masculinism have limited its potential and to find language where there is none.