on earth lately, i’ve been looking at everyone like i love them.

…I walked in the country of letters,

its fields of eyes belonging to my lost sister—
dark eyes that early closed, or forgot

to open. I have not been back in some time,
though often I walk to my office, daydreaming

of that country’s fashions, the clothes of its citizens
like the clothes of my dearest dead or unborn.

In the heaven of letters, I will not walk.
I will not strip the golden clothes from my lover,

…I will stand, stay with the trees before me,
their ancient charisma that cares for me.

Like all scholars in any sort of heaven, I will study
the metaphysics of madness. I will find

that the littler the light, the better it tastes.
On Earth lately, I’ve been looking at everyone

like I love them, & maybe I do. Or maybe I only love
one person, & I’m beaming from it.

Chen Chen

somewhere in between the slices of your was and am

you’ve found all you need and I’m scared to interrupt your content state of being with my delusional demands of
occasional hi and let’s
as I already see you barely
manage to spread me
somewhere in between
the slices of your was and am

the thinner I am in your thoughts
the more my everything hurts so once more
I become a paper plane and throw myself
against another wall of laters and sorry-nos…

of becoming a shade/Josie Firze

gassy research that will giantly aid humanity.

In a dream, you wouldn’t,
shouldn’t be working, so I wouldn’t, couldn’t get to miss you,
      not in this sweetly

      boring way. Or
you would, in the dream, be working, but on Jupiter,
      performing very important
extremely scientific research on the gas giant. Gassy research
      that will giantly aid humanity, no,

every last earthling,
amazing! But darling, my dearheartling. My
myling, it would
gore me to miss you
that much.

Quintessence: the Quotidian/Chen Chen (continued).

the whole time i don’t think you even saw me.

I saw you across the room you were wearing
salmon shorts and a blue polo I remember
your order it was something unsweetened
and iced with extra soy milk I thought Oh
me too you walked over to me and I prayed
everyone stopped moving and one lightbulb
flickered the planet stopped mid-spin it hung
in empty space it began to fall toward Pluto
but before passing Jupiter you turned around
everyone kept moving nothing had changed
except now the sun was smaller in the sky
and Jupiter floated on the horizon like a big
orange I remember because I was sitting near
the window so I could see down the street
there were clouds but not enough to cover
the peach-yellow sky all of the ice in my drink
melted and so did my plastic cup the whole
time I don’t think you even saw me or maybe
you were the girl with the neon shirt the thick
black tattoos on your back the bleach-blonde
hair and we didn’t stop at Jupiter we fell all
the way to Pluto and we kept falling until we all
fell off this planet and onto Pluto don’t you know
there’s a Starbucks on Pluto and you turned
around and stepped outside into the rocky
beige I sighed and looked back down Oh a text

Talin Tahajian