‘Lit Talk’ by Angela Gabrielle Fabunan

If you find a girl, don’t make her yours—

she won’t get your obscure literary allusions,

so why not give up on poets who cut

lines in search of heads, top quite gone?


You can turn any word

into a reprimand. You com-

-mand, -plicate, -e, sitting down.

You speak in a world of no error,

one hand near your slip of tongue,

the other seizing the steak knife.

Words, you eat until gone.


That world, I now remember

feeling my way through a conversation

teetering on critique.

At every stop and turn,

you’d excise the obvious.

The important part—you told slant.

And of course, you would ignore

me, a figure of puns.


But then you came face-to-face

with the abyss, in the hourglass

of me leaving your existence,

and you slid alongside the sand.

It behoves me to be honest.

Call it outpour. Call it passion.

Call it sentiment. Call it

whatever you want, but I wish

I had more than loved you.


I would not like to be married

to a poem, I would like to be

the morning dawn upon your face.

At the very least, your working week

and your Sunday rest. All I want

is your boundless love. And now

this has become elegy

for what it signifies.


My greek hero, my one romantic,

my evermore paramour, my respect

for the past has no burial, so here


I am, not yet dead, gathering remains

of what was lost, my only weapon

against what is before us—a void.


Poet’s Bio: Angela Gabrielle Fabunan graduated from Bowdoin College and attended the University of the Philippines MA Creative Writing for a time. In 2016, she was awarded the Third Prize for Poetry from the Carlos Palanca Memorial Foundation. She is an alumnus of UP Writers Club.


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