Joon Oluchi Lee Bookshirt
Writer Joon Oluchi Lee's bookshirt is a bootleg of a bootleg Madonna shirt that Lee got at the Anarchist Bookstore in San Francisco in the 90s. Underneath the Madonna, drawn by Lee, is an upside down paragraph from Lee's book Neotenica, where the character Young Ae makes her husband wear the bootleg shirt, and Young Ae's husband is looking down at his shirt. In order to read the paragraph the bookshirt wear-er must also look down at their bootleg Madonna shirt.
The paragraph reads: "He looked down at his upside down stomach and saw the t-shirt he had ironically put on for the party. He bought it years ago at the Anarchist Bookstore: a white hand-silk screened bootleg number bearing an image of Madonna peeling herself out of a black leather jacket, atop of a big fat acid-pink triangle. Underneath, a quote set soberly in Times New Roman: 'Every straight guy should have a man’s tongue in his mouth at least once.' Young Ae’s future husband laughed, and ingots of blood landed on Madonna’s bustier and the word 'at.' He suddenly remembered that one member of the army actually had a slash of pink across his beige t-shirt that made him look like a rare vegetable, split open as for a snack. Until the train came, right on time this time, he quietly and gently fucked that pink memory."
What is a bookshirt? A book that’s a shirt. Much like a fish growing legs and walking on land, so too the page must grow legs and learn to walk around. The bookshirt is an experiment in imagining a book as a shirt. How does a poem change when it follows you through your day, when you read it waking up, backwards through a mirror?