Poetry and Art by Chris Emory

Meanwhile

A quiet state of paranoia settles into the Pasifika

As if it was a part of our daily rhythm.

After the prayers,

After the protocol,

When the village notices that the sunset weeps for us,

Afraid that we won’t be here when it gets back.

 

That the waves stay a little longer before receding now-

Crashing against the shoreline like the hugs before a warzone

 

We address

Our relationship to the earth

Through the lens of a tragic motherhood

We call ourselves her children

Consider our humanity

A Mom’s worst nightmare.

Do we infantilize ourselves

To feel less guilty

For the crimes we commit against her?

 

And isn’t it funny

That we refer to the planet

With female pronouns

So as to say

That womanly bodies are a default recipient of our recklessness?

 

How do you live with clear conscience

Under an administration

That carves cemeteries out of national parks?

Call it the solution to the housing crisis

Give the deforestation a name

That looks good on paper

And doesn’t visit us in guilt.

 

An administration that

Would rather watch the ocean

Devour an island nation

Before it could know sovereignty,

An administration

That makes an ultimatum between the quality of life

And the health of the environment.

Why 

Is a ballot

Our best shot at safety?

That for some reason

By just living here,

We just know how to sink better than the rest of the world.

 

Watch

As our neighbors sink too

Watch,

 

As Micronesia sinks too,

Watch

 

For the oil rig sunsets that made a funeral home

Out of the Pacific

Watch

For the day our mountains are sea level

Watch for the day that the beach

Goes to us.

This poem is only as unfinished

As our initiative to make things right.

 

A quiet state of paranoia settles into the Pasifika

As if it was a part of our daily rhythm.

After the prayers,

After the protocol,

When the village notices

That the waves stay a little longer before receding now-

Crashing against the shoreline like the hugs before a warzone

When the village notices that eh sunset weeps for us,

Afraid that we won’t be here when it gets back.

Colorscapes

"These three pieces were made at the Honolulu Museum of Art. They have these ipads with "Colorscape" on them, to act as an interactive component of an exhibition focused on the Hawaiian Monarchy's outstanding international relationships (Ho'oulu Hawai'i by Healoha Johnston.) I'm a security guard there, and you know your girl has to make something/doodle/write whenever she can."

Tuiga Study

"In the middle of brainstorming different Tuiga (Samoan headdress) designs and concept for future project."

FU'A TAU, FU'A MALIU

(Feudal flag, funeral flag)

"Made of siapo, ofe, paper streamers, dead lei, dead kahoa, antlers, earth from Mililani. Featured in "Brown Queer & Also Here" exhibition in October of 2018."

Chris Emory is a multimedia artist, the oldest of 7 truly unique and beautiful siblings, and turns 20 on the launch of this zine <3.   She moved to the Hawaiian Kingdom from her homeland of Samoa, and there she is constantly discovering new things about herself, her loved ones, and the world around her.

@sisinresidence on instagram <3