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Of darkness: Of risk

by Charisse Pearlina Weston


Of darkness | Of risk
where darkness risks being the forever nocturnal

source of light itself.

risk     a potentiality fundamentally grounded. The possibility of an otherwise unwanted, an unwanted otherwise. A repetition, an other irruption of the present, an iteration with a difference.

risk     an omni-temporality. An activity of sensation without sensation, aisthēsis,

I smell risk. It smells like amnesia. It smells of deep sleep. Risk touches my skin—and feels    of nothing—and risk lifts up the down on the nape of my neck. And risk kisses me there before         threatening to slit my throat.

risk is an otherwise who burns by and of itself without actual fire.

sedimented. coagulated futures measured by stacks of intertwined past occurrences, risk is an accumulation of happenings whose trajectory— whose historicity—both grounds and pushes them into the present, into what we use to anticipate the now and the new now. In this sense, risk is a wide spread out kind of thing, risk is the everlasting fallacy of the horizon line as if it were an object that could be reached.

risk     a dark cloud hanging low over the wanted, over the desired, over the hopeful. Risk is the darkness itself that snuffs out the light. The thing, the act of the thing, and the object of thing itself.

One of many inceptions: “…and then there was..”

but before the was? The face of the deep. Deeper than the was, is the omnipresence of black.
a before anticipated by the capacity of darkness for poetry. for lyricism. for beat. grooves. for footstepsin the dark. and this is the antecedent. this, the of “the antecedent” is risk. It is the unspoken was not of the “and then there was,” it is the ever presence of an absence whose lack we can not help but speak on.

before the light, walking within it along side it now, the darkness was light



being is black
black is risk
black is risk
the only risk is black black is
black is

mediated, deferred, delay, lateness.

we don’t have the luxury. from the past that sits atop our knees. that kisses our neck. and threatens to slit our throat, as risk. as measure. as the gentle violence of moving back. the lace tied tightly around our neck. a noose. a possibility for members, only.

a testimony.
future laid out to bear by its predecessor.

I know she hears me calling. She looks back and waves her hand. I knew she heard me calling. She looked back and waved her hand.

On the 710, we form a procession.

Now I raise up my right hand. Then I raised up my right hand. Then I raise up my right hand.

red and white lights. Flashing. A vigil. We take the flowers from their pots, overturned. Begin a march up to the blessed dead, nestled deep, deep in the brush—off the shoulder. Overturned. Already. Like the flower pots we lay, to keep the sound, the hum in.

an otherwise who burns by and of itself without actual fire.

safely in. safely in. safely in.






Safely In

Charisse Pearlina Weston is a LA-based multidisciplinary artist and writer whose conceptual installations, photographs, and writing grapple with the complexities of language, race, genesis and historicity. She is currently a MFA candidate in Art at UC-Irvine.

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