(not quite) a literary journal


Etiology Unknown, by Lauren Lansford

To bore into your mind
of rocketships and realities
where the despot is humorous (an enviable escape)
would consume my pedestrian knowing
like a shell in an acid ocean
But I wish to be dissolved.

I will never forget seeing you
reading Poplars
gnashing temples
eating paper—
The convivial thrush won’t stay;
the children can’t reach the sky,
you alone navigate slender branches, as their emptiness
supports weightless desolation.

Unjust scales don’t measure the power
of ceaseless pistons,
(excess movement that is not fitting to the setting)
but thwart you and suppress you but
cannot silence you even if you
tried it.

You are right to be aggressive (hasty acts that occur in the moment without thought)
You are right to be unruly
You are right to draw into your transept
(there, a candle always lit),
guttural orisons of mercy through stretched mouth, tense jaw,
though prayers are useless.
(Behavior therapy could help))

Small body resisting the weight of his world
like a backpack burdened
locked in
from expressing a genius others could understand.

Little one, I love you.
Were you a dream or a careless mistake?

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art by Emily Ferrara

art by Emily Ferrara