Two Pieces

Issue 1

by Luís Costa



Chlorine covered skin, peach suncream.
He is mowing the lawn.
I’m the last solid moment
of ice cubes,
sprayed scent of peeled tangerines.

My face is in the water, no one can see me
cry. Blossoming
marigolds, constellations yet to chart, watch
as he wipes sweat from his brow.

I think we’ll have to live inside rainclouds.
Maybe hide in the wings of butterflies,
become cerulean tiles, August skies.
He takes off his Placebo t-shirt.

Stones blister, woodpeckers drum, brave
soldiers get ready for a fight.
Under the midday sun,
I crave soft strawberry

sorbet, trapped in glass. Pinecones fall
one by one. Counting feline steps
until we kiss behind the pool shed.
Lost in the outskirts of September,

we bleed like grapes into the oak,
holding summer hostage
until he’s mine.
And he never wants me to be gone.


You are asleep.
I am a cat watching birds
behind the glass. The mahogany
ceiling fan still drying saliva
from your shoulders. I repeat it all,
you become the pervasive colours
of first light. My stubble, your thighs.
I inhale your scent: fabric conditioner,
lilies, sweat. Your briefs
a marble island on cobalt carpet seas.
I want to show you the places
where my shame
was hidden. The damp sheets, the calid
walls. Together, we can
shatter porcelain figurines, interrupt
this dance atop the eighties
television set. Turn crochet doily into
surrendering flags. What arrests hearts
is enough to be
real. I wish they all could see it: us lying
here, tensed triceps, tulip lips,
how much more we could be living.

Luís Costa (he/they) is an anxious queer poet featured in Visual Verse, Stone of Madness, Queerlings, Inksounds, Farside Review and FEED. Longlisted for the Out-Spoken Prize for Poetry in 2022, his debut pamphlet will be published by Fourteen Poems in November 2023. He holds a PhD from Goldsmiths and lives in London with his cat Pierożek. You can find him on Twitter @captainiberia.