from LOSING MIAMI by Gabriel Ojeda-Sague

start with sinking:

I was raised in a city
that could be swallowed
by the sea within
the next century


start there


I rest in the sake
of returning,
like drinking from the well


    my spirit talks

    to you


        to see a ficus
        as the memory of an ocean









there is no shape to the frenetic
odd nerves, the dogs on the other side
of the fence, the thin film on the water,
a single green bump in the middle,
waiting with one eye open:
    need for food


        I am hopeful about bakeries
        where periods hang like pearls
        one word aiming at another


solo lo plástico
    como siempre


así forma un merengue
de botellas sobre el agua









just as much as me and more


            Francisco, bring me a tissue
    I want to clean up the hairs on the floor
        of the bathroom


I want my friend to see me as someone
he could love, I mean really love


I want to get squeezed till I turn out
dented like a pipe


      if a lizard gets in the door
      get him with a napkin
      let him live
      get him with a napkin









between islands, pronounces potion
    let it be a weed in the drawers, stopped
    hammering particles into clothing
    had the water isolate itself in his throat
        that’s the river

        I said
        no that’s the river
        that one
        I thought it was…
        no it’s that
                I put a capsule
            back in his throat
          suck the water back up
         pop the bubble that is choking him
    it grew blue in my room
   it absolutely wished to be bigger








lovers “at the bottom” of the ocean
necklace “at the bottom” of the ocean
shipwrecks “at the bottom” of the ocean
corpses “at the bottom” of the ocean
all myths, ningún fondo de las cosas
malagredecidas, no bottom to a hell-bat
not a sink nor a belly crease


stolen static “in the middle of the”
dripping cotton “in the middle of the”
life at rest “in the middle of the”
birth of iron “in the middle of the”
city’s wedding “in the middle of the”









an heirloom day, started slowly
gets a track of anger through its center
in reaction to one’s own appetite
steadily impossible and sinking


I give this and other
particles to my son
who is laying on the beach


Gabriel Ojeda-Sague is a Miami -> Philly, Latino, queer Leo. His first collection, Oil and Candle (March 2016, Timeless, Infinite Light), is a set of writings on Santería, war, and the precarity of Latino-American lives. He is also the author of 4 chapbooks, most recently Where Everything is in Halves (Be About It, 2015), poems against death through The Legend of Zelda, and ‘Yo’ Quiere Decir Sunburn (2016), poems of anxious bilingualism. His second full-length book Jazzercise is a Language is forthcoming from the Operating System in 2018. His work can be found at