The Category of Outcast by CJ Evans


The poems of CJ Evans are as mysterious as they are precise. He has an amazing gift for combining opposing feelings in the same breath.

—Terrance Hayes

Hands Full of Sun

Many violences came to them
all at once, and now they can't stop

their vision. It hums and grows.
Ultraviolet is a terrible thing

to see. A pear's light is the same
as her hand's, and he doesn't trust

himself to know what to bite.
They shut the lights, stay in bed.

A book spine inks her breast
like a sickness. He takes walks

when he can't avoid his anger
at how so little can bruise her

so badly. Outside, the people
are hooded and gray, but he knows,

no matter what, she is always
the soft yellow of petals.

He comes home and they shut
the blinds against the light, and curl—

first one the hand and one the pear,
and then the other way around.

All rights reserved. Reprinted with the permission of the author.

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