The desiccate syllable
solo and trashblown
against a chain link
fence. The sky occasioning
itself impossible and blue
above us. So it’s come
to this? Is it what it is?
It’s tough out west
and the sea and this dead
city have locked us in
as far left as we can
venture. Left-margined.
Left at this remove I
can’t hold you, but baby
you’re smooth as shoreline
when my wet evidentials
collapse, drip castles,
your sedimented brow
a trap
As verbs, are we heavier
or lighter than water?
No longer certain, we
no longer have need
to remember. Only that
we should swim, and fast,
so we finally have something
to do with our hands.

Adrian Dallas Frandle

Adrian Dallas Frandle (they/he) is a queer fish who writes poems to and for the world about its future. They are Poetry Acquisitions Editor for Variant Literature, a Best of the Net 2022 nominee, and a poetry first reader for Pidgeonholes and Okay Donkey Lit Mag. Find their work online at

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