Loudspeaker:: Call me by my name by Ada Ardére


WUSSY is proud to present new work by Kansas City poet, Ada Ardére. If you would like to send in a writing submission, please contact Nicholas Goodly.

Call me by my name

You use it for dogs, you use it for cars,
you use it for ships, and boats, cannons
and the space shuttles that pierce heaven.
You use it for churches, you use it for temples,
you use it for jewels, and crowns, tomes
and the endlessly manufactured machines of war.
And yet you refuse.

Would it really be a lie, and if it were,
would it be such a crime, to denote
incorrectly, to point out wrongly?
Words were never like that anyway,
never pointed down to the helix
fixated on the chromosomes and their
enticing shapeliness.

It was never like that and never will be,
did the Romans sans the neuter compile
their glass lenses to declare XY
in their mountains of documents on the hill
or did Wittgenstein declare the pronoun game
assertoric eo ipso in his aphorisms
and investigations?

Was it Kaplan or Kripke who hammered
rules in Church doors, contingently necessary
that demonstrating is an act of deception
if and only if the grunt is improper
the ejaculation of spittle and sound
what really matters deep inside
mythic syntax eluding functionality?

You’ve changed it so very many times,
when your wife or daughter ceased
her maidenhood with an official licence
and in every instance of a nickname,
pet-name, surname used in casual
reference, changing your call with 
the times. But not with me.

Would that you ignored your squinting
searches scanning over certificates
appealing to the authority of my parents
who themselves have long since ceased
the use of that word that lays in
a grave deeply buried and as dead as
the me that first owned it.

If only you could see the being that names 
are baptised in the name of in
the fires of their first utterance,
that horrendous chimera of good and evil,
habits and failings of character,
loves, and stories of anxious history,
as I am now and never have been.

I am made of all my parts and past
who form the greater thing that
in defining self-defines and in denying
is denied. I have never sought your harm,
nor could I merely in that I am, so
would it cause you so much pain
to simply call me by name?

Ada Ardére is a Puerto Rican poet from New Orleans, but lives in Kansas City. She studied philosophy of art and Plato, and loves beat poetry.