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  • Writer's pictureJason Jenn

“I Painted My Fingernails A Rainbow…” (a new poem)

photos by Robert Patrick and Ian MacKinnon

premiered on March 20, 2017 @ Planet Queer:Resist (poem is meant as a live performance, taking on personas and displaying each color on each finger as mentioned in the parentheses next to first line)

I painted my fingernails a rainbow So you would know what kind of person I am

(right pinky) Here on the pinky a dollop so dinky But powerful, potent and purposely pink Within its tiny confines my little girl dream twinkles To distract from all the growing wrinkles To nab something drab and transform the norm – pink! Once upon a time you might think it was weak But have you not seen its profound power united Not tickled but ticked off pink and taking no more shit From the stink of a government most foul Pink is strength imparted from its corresponding tender parts Oh pink! Always on the brink of something fun Oh pink! Queerest shade under the sun Pink! Pink! Pink! I don’t think I could squeal any more in delight Than I do for you, pink!

(left pinky) And on the other hand reflecting time so refined The regal and stately shade known as purple Properly placed for my dainty old lady to sip her tea In calm and comfort with a sense of high society Not wishing any harm just wisdom upon everyone Well respected as reflected through the ages like the sages Dressed in various sensible shades and bountiful brocades glorious purple The perspicacity of plum, the vibrancy of violet The exquisite ambiance imbued by amethyst Or the light lift that you get as a gift from lavender Exalted and vaulted in its holiness and royalty Purposefully elegant and tastefully poignant purple

(both thumbs) Now hang loose you’ll find on my hand’s caboose My apprehensible and indispensable opposable green thumbs To represent the lush Eden inside me Both the untamed jungles of sensuous mystery within Along side my meticulously groomed hothouse Should I still be found sucking my thumb It means I’ve come to enjoy the endless green pastures of delight All manner of savory succulents and forbidden fruits of this here fruit For that is how my garden grows But also where my envy shows I hope my bitter herbs aren’t tossed in the mix too often A little spice when I’m not feeling nice For should I bite my thumb at you- it is indeed intended as an insult What can I say, you wouldn’t like me when I’m angry And the green you be seeing is the grass in your face from the foot in your ass It’s only natural – green

(ring finger left hand) Watch out! Pay attention! Look here! You’ve been warned, but don’t be too alarmed dear fellow That beneath the warm and sunny mellow disposition To be faced with vibrant vivid livid not really so timid yellow Now, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t fear That you’ll dismiss me as a mere lilting daffodil or dandelion You can paint me a coward yellow But whatever might dribble down my pant leg metaphorically Is merely one moment of this bold and buttery blonde – so beware! Should I release my wits upon you’ll be showered and certainly not in praise Like the wasp or bee that stings you will feel my burn Caution is required for such awesomeness acquired Highlighted in the accent of yellow

(ring finger right hand) Which brings us now to blue Among the throngs a frequent favorite hue Not just for baby boys, but go on paint up your beards And release your tension lest I mention coloring your balls — ew, anything but blue Sunk into a funk of a somber mood indigo But there we go from time to time to understand our depths Where blue bruises forge tearful rivulets The weight of one regret heaped upon yet another overwhelming Moments cut off too soon – never quite captured completely Fleeting glimpses – come back I miss you midnight blueness – All knotted up and gnarled tight lingering in the throat Things that were never said or said with dread until all blue in the face Rejected neglected restricted conflicted I need to moan —— Why do I feel so damn alone?!?! Sorrow yesterday today and tomorrow Give me strength to embrace navy blue – shock me into awareness electric blue Let me let go this burden and soar once more into the vast and wild blue yonder! Soaring high into the sky blue Oh, yes, give me smooth soothing baby blue I love you How could I not stay true with blue!?

(middle finger left hand) Now, how to define a color that defies to rhyme The brash and bold, does not always do what is told, orange But do not get me started on he who shall not be named but is disgusting everywhere! That atrocity hypocrisy disgrace to the human race and an abuse of the color – ugh! But yes orange can be gaudy and audacious, bawdy and salacious Like daggers in the eyes of sensibility So feisty and zesty in testing the limits of taste Tart and tangy, sweet and sultry Appropriate color for a citrus fruit and much more to boot The chakra source of our creative and sexy self Sending vibrations to our imaginations from mild to wild Orange ubiquitously encapsulates an entire season of autumnal splendor From falling leaves to all hallowed eves So wicked when you need it to be So cute as a pumpkin as required Abounding and astounding so, go for it already! Orange you glad you did?

(middle finger right hand) Which brings us now to red. A moment of silence please to experience the dread Such a striking stunning cunning color Worn in all the right places and dressed to impress That brings a rise to the pitter patter of anticipation What could be more sexy Bite into the red apple and feel the rush Cheeks blush, lips drip and bosoms blossom with bright and rosy radiance What could be more thrilling – and simultaneously chilling Because we know what a serpent lies ready to strike at any given moment A venomous furious rush of emotion – red Cut us open and spill our blood – red Wrap us in ribbons, bandage our wounds, paint the town – red Are you seeing nothing but it – red Are we drowning as the world heats up – red And more than a scarlet fever has reached a ferocious fervor in our head The animosity of otherness overwhelming all our senses Political fires burning bridges, burning crosses Witness the witless demise of our society! No! Fuck you red! We are ready to serve it right back Red revolution Red resistance Red rage God damn you, mother fucking, what the hell is happening If we keep this up we’ll all end up dead red!!!!!!

(both index fingers) Only when the black and the white the yin and the yang Unite might everything be alright Adjusting the teeter totter balance of the universe Such sensational dancers through time and space Combining all the colors, removing all the colors The blending of sight and the absence of light Reset restore renew refresh reveal rebegin Everything and nothing Tranquility and clarity In the realm of possibility There is so much to be said about black and white But they speak volumes for themselves in voluptuous wavelengths of silence Shhhhhhhhh

As I gaze upon these fingertips I am reminded That we contain all of this and more A kaleidoscopic collage of colors and contradictions We contain Whitman’s multitudes And in the patterned patchwork of color A most dramatic chromatic diorama My fingertips are bright little signposts Tell tale transmissions Of this is who I am This is what I am here to be And I see the prism you imprison behind yours as well Free the full spectrum of who you are

I painted my fingernails a rainbow So you would know what kind of person I am

Footnote: (taking off shoes to reveal…) As you know at the end of every rainbow We’ve been told to find a pot of gold So here goes – enjoy my glittered toes!

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