by Sam Moe
1. Two places I can’t trust you with my heart: here, between wet cove rocks, you’re working through the idea of strelitzia reginae in the afternoon, I’m distracted by flower, leaf, low reef, the spindlebeak is blue and between the two of us I think we could outlast the storm. Will you come over later to help me board up my windows? 2. I keep forgetting things. For example, the next place I can’t trust you—is it near the edges of water, or the top of an old bridge? Either way, if you pushed me in, I would hit my head on the rocks. I wonder what would happen first: anger, or my heart stopping. Either way, these days I can’t believe myself and the love I still feel for you? Who told me this was a good idea? 3. Without you I won’t survive the winter. What else is new? between salt-licked streets are dark green buildings, every windowpane is coated in moss, the storm lingers overhead, the rain has barely begun and already I can’t see. You’re the kind of person who would bite my hand if I offered it to help, you would sooner start a fire than talk through things with me, I’m sure you’re going to let the flood in. Already I see you are wearing too-tall rain boots, extra cigarettes sealed in a plastic case in the back of your car. 4. It would taste good, you know, the coconut ice cream you refuse to let me try because you think you’ve failed the recipe, I see your faded shape hunched over the sink chipping away at the sweetness, some shards fall and your cat licks at the coconut crystals, she’s one of your many weapons, can I ask why you’ve stuck around this long, I wouldn’t mind if you told me I'm good at holding knives during dinner, you just can’t see I’m shaking beneath the table, I’m haunted by your promises and threats. 5. The moon doesn’t care if the house goes out to sea. We’re reading in the window, which you hate, proximity and coziness, you’d rather be outside gathering samples from the ocean, it has washed up hundreds of sand dollars onto the porch, the walkway is becoming so overcrowded I can see the specific pin holes of the astriclypeus, the center of eccentric sand, the fellaster is so bronze I wonder if you’ll take it inside. Instead, you shut the curtains. Screw the storm, you say. 6. This isn’t about forests and hills, the fact that you said I know nothing, or the time you pulled me over by my blazer lapels, once you touched someone else’s hand in front of me and I almost passed out. I see what you’re saying, maybe this is my problem, maybe I should beg the witch down the street for a potion that might turn me into a tiny leach. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to say a hungry, bloody thing. I meant maybe I’d be better off as a jaw. That’s not right, a paw, a claw, a sea urchin, or perhaps a tiny vial of violet-hued poison. 7. I tell you nothing of my dreams of magic, the way others come with soft shawls, their hands wrinkled, I don’t know who they’re related to but they seem to love me, they’re trying to coax me into the bog but when I make to leave I’m awake, instantly, next to you. I thought you told me you wanted to sleep on the floor, thought you wanted to linger like a shadow or a knotted rug, thought you wanted distance. Is this because I can’t get your name out of my pen? 8. So you’re angry autumn is over. Overnight, the house turns haunted. Bits of reef have billowed between floor- boards, there is a sea turtle asleep on the couch. You’re more concerned about the poltergeists banging pots and pans together in the bathroom, there is a mother-shaped phantom who won’t stop crying at the edge of the bed, I can’t tell who’s more upset, myself lurking in the hall and trying to seduce your older sister or you, who is both a god and an ordinance, dancing with your face all screwed up with the ghost of your father’s father’s father.
Baía do Guajará
by Guilherme Bergamini
Sam Moe is the first-place winner of Invisible City’s Blurred Genres contest in 2022, and the 2021 recipient of an Author Fellowship from Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing. Her first chapbook, “Heart Weeds,” is out from Alien Buddha Press and her second chapbook, “Grief Birds,” is forthcoming from Bullshit Lit in April 2023. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram as @SamAnneMoe.
Reporter photographic and visual artist, Guilherme Bergamini is Brazilian and graduated in Journalism. For more than two decades, he has developed projects with photography and the various narrative possibilities that art offers. The works of the artist dialogue between memory and social political criticism. He believes in photography as the aesthetic potential and transforming agent of society. Awarded in national and international competitions, Guilherme Bergamini participated in collective exhibitions in 49 countries.