manuel arturo abreu art photograph

Four Poems by Manuel Arturo Abreu

not every ocean is born tender

the sentences serve to hide themselves
then, when you see through them
they serve to see themselves
at which point you climb inside them
this is why one lets the color of the word increase.


crying should be waged

two scotch-tape birds sit on a cigarette butt
two reptilians walk past the birds
two windows open and say ‘huzzah’
two clairvoyants will never admit to wanting to die young
two drops of sleep in between my fingers
two days who are also sisters
two people buying pizza and dousing it in ranch
two centipedes too shy to hold hands
two former lovers who got lost on the phone
two atoms who can’t help but always feel nauseous


in john malkovich’s daughter’s apartment

sitting twenty feet away
from a clear plastic trash bag
full of empty coke cans
which the person living here
turns into ashtrays
which often spill
the red bulge
looks like a ladybug infestation
like when they pile on each other
then writhe and hibernate
i want to be a ladybug now
calmly wrapping myself
and 103,000 other ladybugs
tightly in clear plastic


things scream when you paint over them (if they want to)

they painted that building the same color as the sky
the painted clouds say ‘maybe we never wanted to be stonecutters’
they say ‘all waiting stones express the nameless’
the town crier is given a nightstick but it is a glowstick
the clouds say ‘somewhere between a rock garden
and a garden garden, repeat ‘brown’ until it loses meaning.’



Manuel tweets via @deezius and her work can be found at

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