Kate Greene


And I am not thinking of it

At a distance

I am three women watching three women

Tear open a satyr



Who among us hasn’t

Impressed upon the stipulated nipple

Wondering how

One must suck

One’s way out


Hands held it

Round like clay

Head thumbs for

Eyes nails moon

Scooping she looked

Augmented with spark-

ly powder

Shining with water

From a formerly

Crème fraîche

You look

Good he said

And I said


Anti-aging supple-

ments and cold cream

Important in

This horrors era

A cool

Nightly ritual

For the face the

Capital of

Lovely money

I said you too


Fort Tryon Park is like a kid’s dream with its stone stairs, paths carved into rock, big rocks, steep drop-offs, and trees. Adults like it too for the Hudson views, the well-maintained gardens, and the Cloisters. Gays also like it for the Cloisters, featuring heirloom plants historically used in potions, vestments of Rome, and medieval convent walls upon which you imagine pushing your lover so as to drop to your knees in prayer and bury your face in her shadow. Or sucking dick. Sucking her dick (in prayer). Also well-hidden paths. Found one recently, and near its inconspicuous entry point was a bundle of sticks one imagines could be easily dragged to conceal so innocents wouldn’t notice the pressed dirt and grass. It made all the men who calmly leaned against the low mossy walls of the stairs leading up to it make sense. The clockmaker had shown itself, so I began to nod as I walked past. Then hold eye contact. Then trace my visual touch from his face down the centerline. The heart. Pause at the crotch. They touched me back. The exact creases pointing toward the exact curve in dark gray jeans touched me indelibly, my heart, and my mouth now slightly open as I think of what came after that first touch on the stairs.

In Pasolini’s Teorema (1968), a guest who may be an angel or a demon is staying with a bourgeois Milanese family. One by one the guest sleeps with the members of the family, including the maid. By the middle of the film, the guest is gone. The first half of the film is seduction, the second half psychosis. The first half is fucking, the second half is real. How one divine fuck will change your life. In the second half the father gives his factory to the workers, strips off his clothes and roams the desert, the mother cruises for sex with young men, the daughter is carried away catatonic, the son paints fevered abstractions, and the maid becomes endowed with an extraordinary spirituality. She returns to her home village where she refuses all food except nettles and levitates above a building. In one of the final scenes, the maid and a companion arrive at a construction site. The maid walks into a pit. Her companion, using a shovel, buries her up to her face. I was reminded of David Wojnarowicz’s Untitled (Face in Dirt). Dusty, dry. Mouth slightly open. A suffocation by place and time, alive, but only for a little while longer. And also eternal. There are two questions. When to unbury what is known and potent. When to bury it again.

Untitled, 3.5x4.25”, Polaroid film Type 600, 2017

Untitled, 3.5x4.25”, Polaroid film Type 600, 2020

Untitled, 3.5x4.25”, Polaroid film Type 600, 2020

Kate Greene is the author of the essay collection ONCE UPON A TIME I LIVED ON MARS (St. Martin’s 2020). She lives in New York.