Tag Archives: j/j hastain

“1930’s Butches Referred to Themselves as Stallions” – Lyric Essay by j/j hastain

Lesbian Bar in Paris - George Brassaï, 1930's
Lesbian Bar in Paris – George Brassaï, 1930’s

“1930’s Butches Referred to Themselves as Stallions” is one of four mini lyric essays by the inimitable j/j hastain in our Spring 2015 issue.

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HAVING SPENT QUALITY TIME WITH HER IN MY IMAGINATION long before ever being found by and finding her in human form, there were times when imagining her while she was right here with me made me more wholly able to comprehend her in her wholeness: her as a wholeness.

One version: swagger in the slightly tilted fedora (so much like the hat my father wore during that Church play in which he sang that solo as the masculine figurehead in the story: “Thirty days to make a brick, make it hard enough to stick”), suspenders up over the cream colored and slightly-wrinkled-but-still-tucked-in (like any gentleman would do) shirt, the gorgeous polished shoes tied with equal loops on each side, the shape of her hand around the shot glass from which she was going to gulp bourbon.

Another version: a painting (with brush strokes that stand out from (rather than blend in with) the shapes of the painting) of a single horse made out of two horses (fused at an imprecise but precious slant, not evenly or equally down a middle): the front half, a male and the back half a mare. Though the painting is a still life, due to the protruding strokes of its composition it is anything but still.

Another version: a slightly masculine-presenting women’s woman (“that’s womyn with a “y” thank you very much”) driving a Chevy Nova through Denver. Having just returned from writing a love poem to an invisible woman on her Macintosh 128K, REO Speedwagon is pouring loudly out the one operable window in the front of the car. With a Big Gulp in the cup holder (a cup holder that latches manually to the window and is not built into the frame of the car), her arms are outstretched, moving up and down (accentuating the low-key shoulder pads in her coat) ever so slightly to the rhythm of the song. What no one can see (as they stare at her through the window (her mullet is not much different than peering heterosexual folks’ mullets)) is that below the steering wheel (which she is not currently using to drive, since both of her hands are in the air) her fly is open. I have a feeling that I, more than anyone else, know what’s writhing and wriggling within that open fly, trying to get out, trying to get into me.

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Bio Next2j/j hastain is a collaborator, writer and maker of things. j/j performs ceremonial gore. Chasing and courting the animate and potentially enlivening decay that exists between seer and singer, j/j simply hopes to make the god/dess of stone moan and nod deeply through the waxing and waning seasons of the moon.

j/j hastain is the inventor of The Mystical Sentence Projects and is author of several cross-genre books including the trans-genre book libertine monk (Scrambler Press), The Non-Novels (forthcoming, Spuyten Duyvil) and The Xyr Trilogy: a Metaphysical Romance of Experimental Realisms. j/j’s writing has most recently appeared in CaketrainTrickhouse, The Collagist, Housefire, Bombay GinAufgabe, and Tarpaulin Sky.

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Starring Wm. Samuel Bradford, Vajra Chandrasekera, Juliet Cook, Sagnik Datta, Ariel Dawn, Robin Wyatt Dunn, j/j hastain, Rebecca Havens, Anna Lea Jancewicz, Sally J. Johnson, Ian Kappos, Damien Krsteski, Rachna Kulshrestha, Jasper Lo, Danielle Perry, Arman Safa, Bud Smith, Kailey Tedesco, and Jasmyne Womack

“Memoir Recalls” – Lyric Essay by j/j hastain

Trees Laden with Parasites and Epiphytes in a Brazilian Garden - Marianne North, 1873
Trees Laden with Parasites and Epiphytes in a Brazilian Garden – Marianne North, 1873

An author’s memoir grows like plant life in “Memoir Recalls,” one of four short lyric essays by j/j hastain in our Winter 2015 issue.

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WANTING HER LIFE TO COME OFF AS HAVING SOMEHOW CURVED ITSELF, she began writing her memoir at age 13. She wanted to give her experiences the chance to grow along with her, wrap around her. She wanted to work the necessary asphyxiations and the necessary surrogacies in order that they enable unexpected refinement in her. She planned to write her memoir as a synesthesiac plot: something that goes on in many different directions of her for the duration of her.

She needed for the form in which she wrote to evolve along with a continuity of her coming of age by trance. Trance means travelling, but so, without your mind as it usually functions. She believed that by way of her work, her memories could eventually have a mind of their own. Flirting with cliché she took personally what happened when it softened and became vulnerable to her voice: touch-butter for a way for her to tell her stories.

Perform the complexities you create. Track the molecules of an ongoing beast fable. Douse in sentences; dowse for sentences as rotund extremes.

The Banyan tree’s roots are upward and its branches downward: aspects reaching inversely. She wonders on the form of her memoir as an inverse-universal, a startling epiphyte: mutual turning and traction in which miracles can be expressed. It flourishes by what first seems like embellishment. In the flourish, it then slowly strangles what was, eventually leaving its beginning hollow, able to move on.

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Bio Next2j/j hastain is a collaborator, writer and maker of things. j/j performs ceremonial gore. Chasing and courting the animate and potentially enlivening decay that exists between seer and singer, j/j simply hopes to make the god/dess of stone moan and nod deeply through the waxing and waning seasons of the moon.

j/j hastain is the inventor of The Mystical Sentence Projects and is author of several cross-genre books including the trans-genre book libertine monk(Scrambler Press), The Non-Novels (forthcoming, Spuyten Duyvil) and The Xyr Trilogy: a Metaphysical Romance of Experimental Realisms. j/j’s writing has most recently appeared in Caketrain,Trickhouse, The Collagist, Housefire, Bombay Gin,Aufgabe, and Tarpaulin Sky.

“Amiss and Amok” – Lyric Essay by j/j hastain

By User:MatthiasKabel (Own work) [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC BY 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons
Venus of Willendorf – Photo by Matthias Kabel (Own work) [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC BY 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons

The Venus of Willendorf’s body is not something to be used to make a point in “Amiss and Amok,” one of four lyric essays by j/j hastain in our Winter 2015 issue.

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THE VENUS OF WILLENDORF IS PLAGUED with a peculiar but befitting dysphoria. Afraid of her aesthetic shifts ever being misread by others, ever being used as cultural stigma in support of any form of reductiveness, she is impassioned to emphasize: “Nothing in these shifts, nothing in this weight change, this weight loss, is indicative of anything lost.”

She is not trying to lose weight. She has just been more into root vegetables lately. Her weight loss is not meant to be a message or a future measure regarding the female form for generations to come. Her body is not something to be used to make a point. Her hands grab her own belly fat with a ferociousness that is familiar with itself. She is a living state; she is the summation of her skills at work to elaborate bulk.

She pulls her belly fat toward you and states: “I am still here for you in the ways I have always been. The path clots, congeals in certain areas before shrinking and settling back into itself again.” Fluctuations of the body are its valor. The drama in which to attend and attune is the enlivening and making-more-subtle of the body before it becomes entirely stone.

Continue reading “Amiss and Amok” – Lyric Essay by j/j hastain

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“Copulatory Lock” – Lyric Essay by j/j hastain

Hyenas - Martiros Saryan, 1909
Hyenas – Martiros Saryan, 1909

Until very recently, we at FLAPPERHOUSE had no idea that the mating practices of hyenas were so subversive and transcendent. If you’d like to learn more, allow j/j hastain to explain it all to you in “Copulatory Lock”, one of the four lyric mini-essays by j/j that you can read in our Winter 2015 issue.

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SEXUAL INTIMIDATION DOESN’T HAPPEN IN HYENA CULTURE. If it’s not consensual then it simply is not– end of discussion.

Based on the location of her masculinized genitalia (shaped like a penis, but hanging flaccid between her legs) he literally has to squat and dance behind her, moving into her squat, in order to even penetrate her penis with his. Her sexual center is pointing ahead; his follows from behind, into her and through her to the degree that she wants it. She is the stipulation here. She is his direction.

Aware that some gymnastics are required in order for mating to occur, if the female is keen on him, she will lead him up the hill or out to the brink where there is the most likelihood for safe copulation. He follows her to their spot. At the moment of intromission the hyenas’ bodies literally lock in order for exchange to occur. This locking makes fruition and impregnation possible at the same moment that it dramatically increases the risk of the two being seen as a lager body of flesh and then eaten with excitement: a predator’s conglomerate meat.

As the lion nears he does not have a choice. His hormones are raging in response to their hormones raging. With doubled flesh before him, he rushes the magic to engorge on something more integrated than yin and yang. Yin and yang have that curved line between them, indicating their difference. The hyenas’ copulatory lock means, in her choosing to let him, they have found their way beyond the line.

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Bio Next2j/j hastain is a collaborator, writer and maker of things. j/j performs ceremonial gore. Chasing and courting the animate and potentially enlivening decay that exists between seer and singer, j/j simply hopes to make the god/dess of stone moan and nod deeply through the waxing and waning seasons of the moon.

j/j hastain is the inventor of The Mystical Sentence Projects and is author of several cross-genre books including the trans-genre book libertine monk (Scrambler Press), The Non-Novels (forthcoming, Spuyten Duyvil) and The Xyr Trilogy: a Metaphysical Romance of Experimental Realisms. j/j’s writing has most recently appeared in Caketrain, Trickhouse, The Collagist, Housefire, Bombay Gin, Aufgabe, and Tarpaulin Sky.

Outside the Flapperhouse – 12.30.2014

As 2014 has been careening through its homestretch, our Flappers have been even more prolific than usual, getting their work published across the internet like there won’t be a 2015.

Jeff Laughlin shared some things he’s learned this year in “The Year I Didn’t Belong” over at Triad City Beat.

Mari Ness’ “Offgrid” popped up at Three-Lobed Burning Eye.

Dusty Wallace’s “Flight of the Lonely” went up at Acidic Fiction.

Samantha Eliot Stier’s “Plugs” was inserted into The Writing Disorder.

Juliet Cook & j/j hastain collaborated on “Clots Push Over the Edge” for the latest issue of Stirring.

Alison McBain’s playfully absurd “Nothing For Sale” was featured at Saturday Night Reader.

Ed Ahern left his “Aftertaste” at New Pop Lit.

Anna Lea Jancewicz’s poem “Black Robin” nested at Spry Lit.

Cassandra de Alba’s poem “Tyra Banks in the Arctic Circle” strutted the runway at Glitter Mob.

Mila Jaroniec joined drDOCTOR for their year-end podcast.

Emily O’Neill’s poem “Proof” was included in the latest edition of Sundog Lit.

Natalia Theodoridou’s “The Ravens’ Sister” perched itself at The Kenyon Review Online.

J.E. Reich wrote about embracing the changing Jewish family for The Jewish Daily Forward.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam’s “Sleepers” went up at Fantastic Stories of the Imagination.

Julie C. Day’s “Faerie Medicine,” which initially appeared in FLAPPERHOUSE #2, was reprinted by Luna Station Quarterly.