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  • Writer's pictureLammergeier Staff

The Second Person | Byron Xu

Hermeneutic: immediacy and intimacy,

you are hurt or you wait. But you

(moreso I) cannot delineate patience

from a fox caught in a steel-jaw trap

(II) from a fig tree, or the wasp


her first choice.

Instead: the backup plan. A safety net.

Safe, as in uncomplicated. As in directions

on not losing yourself,

in the turnpike’s photopsias of arbor-green

exit signs above the sunroof.

An exit, as in to abscond. To fly

for something better. To bite into this world

like an animal. Or a pine,

or hemlock, her teeth needles

and need fresh, the whole world

a white, balmy.

Byron Xu is a Government and Classics undergraduate and Larry E. Temple Scholar at the University of Texas at Austin. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Hunger, Scud, and The Liberator Magazine, and explores themes of doubt, neurodivergence, and theodicy.

Twitter: @shoebyron



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