Poetry Issue 20:2


Jose Perez Beduya

Department of Never

Only administrators leave the numbered
waters. In a circle on the shore, extracting splinters

of madness from each other’s foreheads, they bend
too close with their lenses, they get

an elbow in the face and wake up
epileptic mid-November. Their wounds give proof

when they dance too long, too fast, they turn
to mud. But the more they pause and plot

in advance of market forecasts, the more
concave they become. They pray

and release. Their spines
drip down. For the group, in extremis, a sneeze

is one besieged townhouse too much.
When three members’ faces

implode weeks of each other and lavender foals
crowd stables month after month, vaults

are drained, new laws are passed, the feed from a gelatinous
sky gets cut. All symptoms point to an invisible

grid that always is. Wires in bulging wind.
A sickness by hypnosis

unto death that broadcasts beach. Shimmering
debris in albatross.