• By Ryan Oliveira

These Times (a triptych)


These months,


These meds,

not right.

These thoughts,


These insomnias,


These mornings,

unable to,


you will get up,

you have to get up,

you can’t.


Your therapist begs you:

Remember the time?

When you gave no fucks

About ghosts, gay men

Rejecting you in texted

Silences, sils vou plais

With you?

You, unpleased

With their tight-lipped kisses,

Their tight-fist caresses,

Their tight disappointments

With you?

You had no fucks

To give or receive then,

Despite their fellowships,

Their advisory positions,

Did you?

Remember then?

Young professionals of color. Couldn’t love me then.

Wouldn’t love me now.


I promise myself today:

I will make it to work One Whole Week.

This I have promised,

Often in the mirror

Six Weeks and More.

Today, I am ready.

Dress shirt and jeans,

Repeating, repeating:

You can do this.

You can do this.

You can do this.

I take three steps

Out the door, into

Suddenly: a weight.

I breathe. Retreat.

Into the room, into

A cocoon of sheets.

Seven Weeks Now. We’ll make it Next Week,

I promise myself.

We have to.

We have to.

We have to.

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Ryan Oliveira

Ideas.  I'm full of them.

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