Dreamed As Medicine: Meditations on Gender and Spirit

by Alexis Penney

I think that I am non­binary. I’m not sure exactly what this could mean. If gender is the way one is read and received, I don’t know who I could be if I only had to read and receive myself. I think that I might be non­binary, because I only feel fully at ease around the queer, trans and gender non-conforming. When I’m being read and received by the mostly cis, I feel ill at ease, to say the least.

My Favourite Utopia

After yet another week of revelations reaffirming the exhausting injustices of life under patriarchy, I sank into another bath. I was listening to My Favorite Murder, waiting for Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark’s comforting tones to transport me from the grotesque world of men using their positions of power to abuse countless women (and the ensuing chorus of victim-blaming) to the relative calm of American true crime stories.

The Sex Column #2: Consent

I feel compelled to focus on recent events; namely, the torrent of sexual assault allegations, and the resultant ‘Me Too’ campaign. I didn’t say ‘me too’, and I distanced myself from the digital furore for the sake of my own mental health. I couldn’t go on twitter or Facebook without being exposed to things that I found triggering. Women’s voices were being amplified—an indisputably good thing—so why was my internal dialogue conflicted?

First Refrain from Doing Harm

I once thought boredom to be beautiful. Not that I experienced anything beauteous when bored, I just assumed the sheer mass of non-experience was, in itself, an experience. It took place in such loaded, symbolic surroundings that I considered it beautiful. 

The Sex Column #1: Disgust

I won’t be replying to a series of individual questions in this column, rather writing about themes that I see recurring—the most common being straight men asking how to 'fuck good'. And I'm never going to deal with that. It has been dealt with. Please leave me alone.

Kozłowski and Louka

They met without ‘preconceived ideas’ about their world. They meant the world they would make for one another. When apart, they were often ‘in pain’. This was their truest ‘commonality’. They used such words. The source of pain mattered little.

The Desert Palace

On the streets of Koreatown, a woman was howling in Spanish for her missing dog, which had one ear yellow and one mauve: a locally famous dog, Casper recognised it from the billboard for the grooming shop next to the weed dispensary on Olympic-Vermont. Huge purple flowers drifted over the sidewalks.

London: It's Not You, It's Me

The most significant long-term affairs in my life have been with cities. Growing up, we are taught, through fairytales and romantic narratives, that life’s for sharing with someone else, but in 2017, society is in flux.

Grenfell Exposed London's Negligence Towards Its Immigrants

London is a struggle if you’re broke. London if you’re a broke immigrant, however, is unfathomably cruel. The Grenfell Tower fire is the most painful manifestation of this the capital has ever seen.

The Copper State

   ‘Is she dead?’ mouths Alice, between reluctant bites of a cherry-flavoured Pop-Tart. I shrug—so many empty spaces in this room are already occupied by the dead. Why shouldn’t Kara fill another?