New Voices: Untitled

By Kori Bennett

we could call psychoanalysis 

a collection of talks and simulated debates 

played and replayed without update,  

resistant to the addition of context,

likely to call one’s background a distraction,

one’s identities interferences in the search 

for the pure shit 


we could call psychoanalysis 

an elitist dying dream, its authorized practice

unreachable for most, its formal training a fortune,

its canon riddled with unacknowledged racism, 

its “I have a question, well, really a comment,”

its particular reverence for preservation,

a couch in plastic


we could call psychoanalysis 

a collection of gestures from many traditions, 

a way of sitting with someone and their parts,

(hands empty yet holding speaking pieces), 

a gathering of people vibrant with ideas and pain and histories  

co-creating and killing joy and re-forming, re-formulating

again and again    



Author’s note: “killing joy” is a reference to the work of Sara Ahmed.

Ahmed, S. (2010). The promise of happiness. Duke University Press, Durham: NC.

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