The Untyping
The Untyping

The Untyping

Au détour d’un atelier d’écriture mené par Pauline Harmange, l’un des exercices (vous avez été arrêté.e pour le crime le plus idiot qui soit, écrivez votre plaidoirie) a donné lieu à ce poème, qui m’amuse assez pour le partager.

How many do you need
to make a good one?
the good and fair and honest
people in this town
would say an accurate
ten, of course.

so, the old
straight dude
was in his right to film me
right to save the
unforgivable footage
right to be tapping
on my shoulder
right to point out
what a blunt spectacle
was happening in front of his eyes
or rather,
how it was happening
in case I didn’t

« Miss » he said
– would you even be
judging me
if I didn’t pass
as a « Miss »
to you all? –
« Miss », he said,
« It is so frightening
to see how you move
there is almost
a grace to it. »

And so, with my unability
to take a compliment
as the way out it is,
proof has been sent
to this tribunal
has been sworn upon
and here I am
before all the judges
of the county,
defending myself
in this serious matter.

You’re afraid to ask
aren’t you

I’ll do it for you
« why would she do it
what twisted mind
would choose
to one-finger-type
through a whole novel?
what evil could drive you
and that sole finger
one letter at a time? »

but the truth, Mister and Misters Jury,
could be even more
disturbing than that.
what if I didn’t have
any choice?
what if I couldn’t use
all my ten fingertips
like the rest of you?
what if my brain wouldn’t let me?
what if I’m too crippled
to not break the law?
how fast can one finger move
before it is called unnatural
how hard do you have
to want the writing
to make it happen
one fingertip
at a time?

the case is closed. I did break the law.
you are scared and you should be.
but before you lock me in,
ask yourself:
if you take the typing
machine away
what new outrageous way
to write will I find?