The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: The End is Not Apocalypse by Tanya JADE VINE Singh


This selection, chosen by Guest Curator Solstice Black, is from The End is Not Apocalypse by Another Morning Where Everyone Tells me I'm Dead by Tanya JADE VINE Singh, released by Yavanika Press in 2021. 

Content warning for genocide, death, and violence.

The end of the body is where it begins

Frenzied mobs of young Hindu thugs, thirsting for revenge, burned Sikh-owned stores to the ground, dragged Sikhs out of their homes, cars and trains, then clubbed them to death or set them aflame before raging off in search of other victims.

– Simran Jeet Singh, It’s Time India Accept Responsibility for Its 1984Sikh Genocide

In 1984, the attackers had set Sikh homes, shops and gurdwaras on fire. One of the most brutal tactics was to “garland” Sikh men with tyres and set them alight.

– Sonia Sarkar, From 1984 to 2020: A tale of two “riots

XIII

I cannot cry so I sigh irregularly, my arms falling sickly. My mother tells me to rely on god but god, I know, is miserable. I visit him when I can. He moves mechanically and curses a lot, tells me I’m late when, in fact, I’m an hour early. I offered him a foliage of trees, the neighbor boy sitting on the bathroom stool, my hands covered in menstrual blood. God did not say a word. All he wants is to take and take. I’m standing in the rain and it is pouring sadness. Just a little green, just a little more, I ask the painter. I name this story so nobody else names it before me: Let god see the light through the window, everyone finally seated at the dinner table. We are all playing a game of pretend—I’m dead, I’m not dead, he’s dead, he’s not dead, they’re dead, they’re not. I can very well make up the rest of the story at this point, but I do not. I leave it all to the church bells, visions of spring, kisses under the mistletoe. I leave it where no one can find us dead or pale under the moonlight. I leave it to you, the reader.


Tanya JADE VINE Singh (it/its) is a queer, transgender/agender anarchist, poet, essayist, and teaching artist from Chandigarh, India. It is the author of Heaven is Only a Part of Our Body Where All the Sickness Resides (Ghost City Press, 2018) and The End Is Not Apocalypse But Another Morning Where Everyone Tells Me I’m Dead (Yavanika Press, 2021). Its work has appeared in Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Rust + Moth, Polyphony H.S, and elsewhere, and has been recognized by Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Student Contest, among other places. It is deeply inspired by the politics of indispensability. 

Solstice Black (she/they) is a queer poet and novelist living in the Pacific Northwest. They are currently undertaking a bachelor’s degree in creative writing. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in ChautauquaThe Fantastic Other, and A Forest of Words, among others. They hope to pursue an MFA in creative writing and a BFA in visual art in the next few years. Her cat is both her greatest joy and torment.

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