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we look
         at you,
         trying to find

            your identity,
         we, a vanguard
         nestled next to

                           beret or
                           fledgling den

                                                 something must
                                              have happened there
                                             to insight

                                                    its lacking,
                                                  this burrow, a

                                                    comfort, a

                                                   onto its peel

                  we have
         to concentrate
         on their

                  cardinal standards,
have acute


         in their
         bob in the


                                                     our ennui
                                                   resides in all
                                         its formalities,
                                               a formulaic
                                            tawny baldachin

                                                      of bitter

         how normal
         it all seems


to brush your dolls hair
         we can’t help

but to ask you
         to stop,
         can’t you see

the hurt

broken stalk
         we see your husk
         , thawed,
                  always worn
                           and warm
                                    by winter”

         we unzip
         your soft vinyl
         in hopes

                           you’ll find
         see it


                  no, not roots
         by smothering
         we, burgeoning leaf
         taught with



                  we, a body
of broken binary,
warped through
round glass

         want you
to know

         you are everyone
         is both

                                                I will not take my gender
                                                        with milk or sugar


   which means                        I will invite both,
   all,                                            into my mouth
   one piece                                          at a time
   today                 I will wear                    a skirt
   and you won’t know        what is underneath





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Alex J. Fox is a poet who sprouted from the great Northwest, whose hobbies/work cover many facets of art and emotional history, such as winemaking and the general riff raff. They write predominately on queer identity, body dysphoria, estrangement, nostalgia, as well as the cycles of abuse and trauma. They have been fortunate enough to feature at events in Utah, such as participating in the Utah Arts Festival, and the coveted Street Poets team for Treefort Music Festival. They are also a former mentor in the Mentor-Artists Playwrights Project (MAPP). When not being That One Nerd Writing Poetry in a Coffee Shop, they can be found snuggling their cats at home while drinking an amazing sour beer or whiskey drink.