|A quarterly GLBT literary e-zine|
Celebrating the Life of Ken Hunt (a.k.a. Sketch)
from "Weapons Prohibited on Premises: Prohibidas Las Armas en Esta Local"
Written During the Taxiing and Takeoff of NW611, 12/20/95.
Should these nerves be justified,
should I join aircraft in statistic,
this flight shall hew the closest to
the main of how I have come to live:
a calmed sex, a love answering love,
a pleasant lager buzz,
my old leather jacket,
my favorite plaid shirt
and a book of poems in my hands,
in whatever form
returned to land.
By the Time I Get to Wyoming
This is attention I never wanted.
This is publicity I never sought.
This is a poem that should have never been written.
Sitting in a coffeeshop,
holding hands with my lover,
our eyes gazing clearly into each others' as we chat,
I sense other eyes upon us.
The language of eyes speaks
strongly of what could come next
the caustic remark, being followed outside,
a fist, a club, a bat.
My training tells me: Fight, not flight.
Stand up for your human, not special, rights.
Nevertheless, my lover feels
my hand go damp.
These are the eyes of social physicians
whose sole diagnosis is
And I am sick
of yammering endlessly about an aspect of my life
which is frankly not all that interesting.
I am sick of pounding the same key
on my political piano sunup 'til sundown.
Most of all, I am sick of the fear that stems from
a conscious American who thinks he knows
what it's like to be on the receiving
end of the great gloved fist
and then speaks to a single other human being
and realizes he doesn't know squat.
This is not from lack of trying.
I have memorized the slogans, learned the dance steps,
mapped out the procession route,
held the vigils, acquired the tattoos,
been there, done that, got and still have
I have taken back the night and it still
swallowed me alive.
In 1992 I went to Oregon to stare down
the nazis of the Oregon Citizens Alliance
and was able to rejoice briefly in the fact that we won.
They came north. In 1993
I berated them at the Capitol building in Olympia
as they tried to incorporate in the state of Washington.
I was in the frothing mass of protesters
outside the lunatic church in north Seattle as they
held their meeting under a hailstorm of shame.
I fought them with my voice and guitar
at benefit concerts (which was where
one of my own bandmates told me to
shut my faggot mouth). I of course did not,
only deepened it after I moved to Texas and realized
how much work there is left to be done.
The past seven years have been
a perfect blur of meetings
internal dispute and the external use of rage as a verb,
the possibility of requiring self-defense
which is the acknowledgment of violence
and the fundamental paradox of violence
as a means of furthering our need to love
even though too many of us understand
the dance between love and violence in a radically
These are the beaten and unfortunate women.
These are the beaten and nontraditional men.
These are all of us whom this culture loathes
recognize that the body is
a field of resistance,
that the danger of desire is not a frilly academic
and that quite possibly makes them more afraid of us
than we are of them.
Perhaps that is why love and resistance is all we have,
when we have seen what fear can do.
I draw my lover close to me.
this fuck's for you.
Ken Hunt (a.k.a. Sketch) (www.nenpapress.net) was a journalist, musician, performer, pagan, ESL tutor, and poet. The very model of the artist engagé, Sketch was a staunch supporter of people and ideas that question social norms and conventions. A regular contributor to numerous performance series and publications in Chicago and around the country, he was the author of several collections of poetry, including This Carcass is a Road Map, Aerodrome, and Perpetually Bad Timing. Sketch performed with numerous bands including Unplanned Pregnancy and Mayor Daley. He is dearly missed by the many people whose lives he touched.