By Billy-Ray Belcourt

1. He told me he was into natives, but he couldn’t love the traumas hidden in my breathing.

2. How do you tell a ghost that it’s already dead, that its body is a fairy tale you stopped reading a long time ago?

3. What happens when wounds start to work like bandages?

4. One time I slept with a man who looked like he was dying. Each time his body found mine it felt like he was collecting fragments of it. It was as if I were an elixir, a potion that could extend his life if he just took me long enough.

5. Sometimes love feels like vanishing, like taking apart pieces of yourself and giving them to someone who can’t use them.

6. He was native, too, so I slept with him. I wanted to taste the same histories of violence that I couldn’t get rid of with mouthwash. I wanted to smell his ancestors in his armpits, the aroma of their decaying flesh, how they refuse to wilt into nothingness. I wanted to touch his brown skin, to make a kind of friction so complex other worlds would emerge in our colliding.

7. What happens when ‘decolonial love’ becomes a story you tell yourself after he falls asleep?

8. He was my own kind of drug: the more I used him, the better I felt; the worse I felt.

9. I tell him: you breathe us, we are in you, look at the blood on your hands.

10. Sometimes not loving is the most radical thing you can do.


  1. kari'd away · August 27, 2015

    Wow. This is powerful stuff. Nice.

    Liked by 25 people

  2. turcotteannemariercotte · August 28, 2015


    Liked by 17 people

  3. Ashley · August 28, 2015

    Billy, I needed these this morning.
    Thank you for sharing.
    (decolonial) love every part of you.

    Liked by 18 people

  4. Jourdan Bennett-Begaye · August 29, 2015

    Reblogged this on #postgradprobs.

    Liked by 15 people

  5. hellohoneytree · October 4, 2015

    This is so beautiful.I love everything about it.

    Liked by 18 people

  6. adayinthelifeofmexo · October 4, 2015


    Liked by 19 people

  7. ndoyraz · October 4, 2015

    Loved every word . Very touching 💓

    Liked by 19 people

  8. ndoyraz · October 4, 2015

    I just wrote my first blog people .. please read and let me know ur thoughts xx from blogger to blogger

    Liked by 17 people

  9. vjearle · October 4, 2015

    The violence in the images expressed here depict so much depth. Amazing!


  10. themagnifyingglass96 · October 4, 2015

    Beautiful. Powerful. Real.


  11. currentlylovingsimplicity · October 5, 2015

    This is amazing. “to make a kind of friction so complex other worlds would emerge in our colliding.” So beautiful.


  12. Stuart M. Perkins · October 5, 2015

    Yes, beautiful and touching. Great post!


  13. pamkirst2014 · October 5, 2015

    This will stay with me a long while. Strong and vivid!


  14. Lisa · October 5, 2015

    Wow, this is just beautiful. Heartfelt and heartbreaking all at once. Number three really hit me, “What happens when wounds start to work like bandages?”, indeed. Thank you for sharing.


  15. nurfatmaperveen · October 5, 2015

    Billy, this article is beautiful even though I’m still young to understand its meaning behind it.

    But the fact that you write it with so much emotion, tact and rawness is what makes it so rich in its literature.




  16. writeitdown · October 5, 2015

    Dayum. This is it..


  17. blackwolfwandering · October 5, 2015

    This touched me to my soul….Thank you


  18. Frankie Banks · October 6, 2015

    Wow! This is good work, for some reason 10 is the most daunting to me.


  19. FlightScarlet · October 6, 2015

    This is so amazingly beautiful. You write with such precision, it’s wonderful. I love how you wrote of violence in love… sad and beautiful, it’s everything.


  20. kwena619 · October 7, 2015

    ” What happens when wounds start to work like bandages?” wow…


  21. Jennifer Reyes Cabaluna · October 7, 2015

    Billy, I am amazed by you.


  22. singlenina0510 · October 7, 2015

    Number five really struck a chord with me Billy. These are amazing. x


  23. guerillalovely · October 7, 2015

    Wow. What incredible imagery. Thank you


  24. Husband · October 8, 2015

    I wish I would have had this a year ago


  25. leo07leo · October 10, 2015

    #10 though. So melancholic and profound.


  26. asphaltdreams · October 10, 2015

    Hauntingly beautiful


  27. Dom · October 10, 2015

    The word choice and metaphors were incredibly powerful. Great writing.


  28. goodnightmoonchild · October 10, 2015

    Your emotions have been put in to words oh so beautifully!


  29. Raihana Aryansis · October 11, 2015

    don’t know what to say because it’s too beautiful to comment on. x


  30. Jessica Joy · October 12, 2015

    Thank you for sharing.
    Powerful is an understatement.


  31. thoughtslikecages · October 12, 2015

    This is beautiful. Powerful. Intense. I love it. Thanks for sharing.


  32. Mathilde · October 13, 2015

    Very beautiful..


  33. aimlit · October 14, 2015

    i love how raw this is!!! sick piece ❤


  34. Deborah Gregory · October 16, 2015

    Superbly penned and titled. Love this highly original work!


  35. sunesiss · October 17, 2015

    Wow!!!!!!!!!!……… first time visiting and all I can say is wow. First thing I read and I am rendered speechless. Well done!!!!…..


  36. Melissa @ Ever Growing Farm · October 21, 2015

    This is so powerful, so raw, so beautiful. Thank you.


  37. Shivangi · October 22, 2015

    Beautiful and powerful… Vivid imagery😀


  38. Debiey Aimee · October 29, 2015

    This is very beautiful


  39. Scarlet Freedom · October 29, 2015

    Wow…I loved every word:-)


  40. itsmayurremember · October 31, 2015

    whoa amazing . heart breaking and raw


  41. Sal · November 4, 2015

    This was beautiful!


  42. Out of the comfort zone · November 5, 2015

    very touching. Every word


  43. Amol Khillare · November 10, 2015

    an amazing read…the fifth line was awesome..beautiful


  44. redrabbithunting · November 10, 2015



  45. lsamanthaleidig · November 11, 2015

    Beautiful. So strong.


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