Queering the archive: 49 definitions of the word queer

by Hannah Kaya, participant in The Rose Festival 2018

1.
‘Queer’ references a diversity of non-het and non-cis people, and is associated with the
LGBTQIA+ community because of its ability to touch on many different experiences. It is
important to note the history of violence this word can carry. Some people feel uncomfortable
with its use, and that is okay too.

2.
Queer is running head first into vague beginnings.
clear the mess of what was
(the then the there the those of the past)
Upset the brittle horizon, opened
Making room for the inbetween

3.
Queer is respect for a collective history of violence
The acknowledgement that revolution is sometimes camp and cabaret
Is sometimes hiding in the bathroom blacked blue and broken
Is sometimes not using the washroom at all

4.
Queer is survival and survival is resistance and resistance is poetry
it is not a rehearsing for the revolution it is revolution

5.
Queer is coming home into ourselves when what should be our home can’t be or isn’t or at least
isn’t right now.

6.
Queer is crafting our own alternative family.

7.
Queer is Being born naked

8.
Queer is Everything else is drag

9.
Queer is thinking that ru fucked up and feeling really confused

10.
Queer is feeling really confused

11.
Queer is “confusing” as an active verb

12.
Queer is an active verb

13.
Queer Is exploring
Queer Is giving
Queer is groping
Queer is hurting
Queer is crying
Queer is cuming
Queer is fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking
Queer is fighting
Queer is generating

14.
Queer is going never landing

15.
Queer is fuck diplomacy

16.
Queer is the lobby that won legalized marriage

17.
Queer is barebone beauty

18.
Queer is fingers fucking me to finish

19.
Queer is fringe

20.
Queer is not so fringe

21.
Queer is secret shorthand stolen by the “straights”

22.
Queer is Cool. Queer is so cool. Queer is so Aesthetic so Now so Real™
grab a coffee grab leg grab a grant it’s cool

23.
Queer is murder and queer is mourning
Queer is synthesized taboos, embodied and felt
Memories that are not mine

24.
Queer is structural potentiality

25.
Queer is a relation of fluidity

26.
Queer is telling your girlfriend to GET A CLIPBOARD because we are NOT
FUCKING AROUND

27.
Queer is to enjoy many elaborate “collaborations”

28.
Queer is that one ambiguous night in london, where i cut the space between us and wonder if
you felt it too

29.
Queer is knowing you didn’t

30.
Queer is loving you in whatever way we can

31.
Queer is learning to accommodate

32.
Queer is waiting outside of NDQ, being too awkward to actually enter the one lesbian party night
in montreal and having to wait another full month, but it’s probably for the best because i can’t
afford to drink anyway and im too much of a baby queer to approach a badass dyke without it

33.
Queer is that voice saying cancel cancel cancel cancel cancel

34.
Queer is SAPPHO TAKE THE WHEEL

35.
Queer is cant

36.
Queer is don’t

37.
Queer is pushing back against capture

38.
Queer is Are you out
When did you come out
Why havent you come out yet
What did your friends say when you came out

39.
Queer is... Cut into the skin of the horizon
Am i not queer enough for you?
Or some other february thought
Seduced by a pain that is simple, slinking into the same

40.
Queer is a way of holding the body

41.
Queer is way of holding bodies

42.
Queer is Baroque babies in prayer to Saint Baccus of the Polyamorous Queers, the masochist, i
feel his presence like fifty fluid figures everywhere and nowhere exactly

43.
Queer is making a new syllabus
Queer is an intelligence of the body
Queer is a hunger of the mind

44.
Queer is bumping butts and casually talking about your toots to a stranger

45.
Queer is yeeeeeeas queen and becoming a meme

46.
Queer is a u-turn, a pothole in the narrative presented as natural

47.
Queer is exterior revamp reimagine and re-member

48.
Queer is having your back on the floor and still moving

49.
Queer is both a strategy of emancipation and a language-tool of those who push us down,
queer is not a contradiction, queer is a flexibility, an anti-container (you might even say a
non-binary)