Two Poems by Mateo Lara

Picture Builder by David Salle


The First Thought

For Shawn


A wick set us both to fire       set us both to anxious plight

separate loving chimes           in our throats

Melody cracked          Crevices between        last dialogue.


In the kitchen  I threw a phone at you which ruptures on your chest

Like that respect for heterosexuals

Who use the word “faggot”    meaning dumb and weak

Or perhaps      that one faulty line on your lips

About someone you love        who cannot be with you

At all   this was a channeling of different strength

Broken between two brown boys but one indistinct groan

Like that I sink under assimilation & pressure

Third time’s the charm

I like to break everything I touch

Friends run      rampant out of my life

Chaos is that white hand at my brown neck

Dark liquor in blood-shot eyes

what is the truth we omit?

Draining our best perspectives           lingering in a red cup

Or if the single most well-known plan

was you here   & not elsewhere

How fast would you leave?

She’ll run into you      harder than a train into this brick wall sentiment

Come complain about             what triggers you.

we were the same distinct broken men

Now in flight with your first thought

After the mighty impact.





Straight Swelling


You’re making me swell up

agitating drizzle into drought

pulsing passed me & taking everything.


I am growing in the water of your indifference

melting wax figure in your heat & hand

hoping that this waiting is essential

a mask of maturity in every low point

pointing us downward into our old selves.


Beauty was irrelevant in your eyes

right? when I’m down on my knees

& your thighs are shaking

fantasizing meteor showers, burning my name up

plummeting old stars into abdomen.


My shoulders are heavy with “right now” & “too soon”

lick me up like I lick you up

hold me up like I lift you up

welling like those planets exploding among this lazy darkness.


Tell me something is changing

I feel it sway through a pipeline of you

straight across this dream

straight down my spine.




Mateo Lara is a latinx queer poet working towards his degree at California State University of Bakersfield. He has a chapbook out callled, ‘X, Marks the Spot,’ available on Amazon. His poems have been featured in Orpheus, Empty Mirror, and EOAGH. You can find him on twitter @killeremm.

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