Three poems


What does he mean when he says, don’t come back here no more?

(Every time we get to the same place
Through a separate descent.
We row back and forth.
Our arms strong.
Our oars faithful.)

What does he mean when he throws you,
What does it mean when he disappears
An act of pure witchcraft
Even though you cast no spells

And every horse is a slaughterhouse

And home is a den of thieves


Tell me how the end of Donnie Darko goes. You’ve seen it —
not me, I’ve only seen the beginning where the car

speeds away and the kids are screaming. Tell me if the boy
dies. Tell me if the rabbit not a rabbit is really a demon

and tell me if he convinced the boy to give up his soul. You
see the Faustian metaphor here; you see what

I’m trying to get at. You in your armored car, rattling towards
the exit. You’re in your death throes, now. Every

teenage boy is you throwing in the towel thinking a wound
is a rabbit’s foot — some holy charm to carry.

I get hit by the car; I’m losing a lot of blood. You drive away.
You drive away. You drive away.


Is this morning, is every
morning like this? Or else

every unturned tortoiseshell,
looking for tortoises? Is

every valediction a rose
water cake? Find me a

body who will do it for
free. Find me a body

who will say no. Time
has an uncanny way

of handing you yes’s —
the spookie ookie, the

shit that makes you scream
like you’re living. Did you

ever shake down such
a thing? I can tell you,

I did. I figured it out.
To walk comfortably between

two people without
disturbing the force of

the universe


artemis lin is a queer writer and filmmaker currently residing in Los Angeles, CA. She is the editor-in-chief of the critical film journal RABBLEROUSE, and will be or has been published in Cha: An Asian Literary Journal and loves me | loves me not.

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