S. Yarberry

New York

You leave me

at a bar table,

on a summer night,

to smoke outside

with some guys,

and I watch you

go across the street—

(there you are,

standing under the yellow light;

hot rain); you looked

so happy in your perfect

new dress; Distance?

Unhinged desire?

What a pity,

to love you,

and never have said it

quite right.

Television Pilot

What a funny time

to rupture! There’s no passion

left on earth today!

No stench of you! No parting kiss!

There’s a red pair

of underwear balled up

in the corner

of my top drawer. Some gorgeous proof

that you were here.

I make up a world for myself

to dance around

any subject I like. I don’t want

this life, is a cocky thing to say,

as I press my forehead

to the cool window, watching

taillights halt

before burning out

into the night. It’s

so odd, I think to myself,

how easy, how demeaning,

it is to be broken. I sweep

snow off the porch,

I sweep until it’s bare, I sweep for all eternity,

and watch life take a toll on me.

I sweep to the sound of deception,

then merriment. I sweep until

I dream—in one I’m offing

myself in some slow cinematic trope,

and in the other we’re running

through the woods towards

a small pink house, a small existence,

yes, a good pastoral life.

A Romantic Sonnet!

Dejection hurts by the lake! And by the train!

And in my apartment! Traversing across

some bogged down field! It hurts the mind,

the dream, the thought and idea. There

is no mind. There is no thought. I see the world

with a blank eye. The honk of the car, so sincere.

Depression, has come to make a life of observation. Light

bounces off a surface. I drink an iced espresso.

The air smells of laundry. The city drips.

The orange salt salmoning the packed snow.

No lake. No dream. No sky. No field. You are the lake,

the field, the dream, the sky. You are the fucking

divinity of Nature! But I cannot see what flowers are at my feet!

S. Yarberry is a trans poet and writer. Their poetry has appeared in AGNI, Tin House, Indiana Review, Redivider, jubilat, Notre Dame Review, The Boiler, among others. Their other writings can be found in Annulet: A Journal of Poetics, Bomb Magazine, The Adroit Journal, and Blake/An Illustrated Quarterly. They currently serve as the Poetry Editor of The Spectacle. S. has their MFA in Poetry from Washington University in St. Louis and is now a PhD candidate in Poetry & Poetics at Northwestern University. Their first book, A Boy in the City, is forthcoming from Deep Vellum.