Digital Poetics: 3 Poems by Carlos Mauricio Rojas
Train wreck marks the transition between when I was in Milton Keynes in the first Lockdown in March 2020, caring for my parents, to moving back to London at the end of the summer. The poem notices the change in the physical environment and its effects on the body. Uninstall Application is an account of the 2015 climate march and recalls a gay man from Pakistan who showed me a picture of his friend who had died in a UK detention centre. A Closet Goodbye is about Roy Adrien Curtis, a queer, neuro diverse man of colour who was found dead in a cupboard in his flat. He had been there for 9 months before he was found. He was a former member of an LGBTQ+ youth club that I was working at when news of his death was announced.
The train passes through your flat
several times throughout the day
a pole spears through you gives you
time to do something with your life
a fruit fly bounces on the note-pad
the bay window kisses into itself
glass everywhere like stars
like a piano the house plays
into the ground a passenger
breaks-up with their partner
over text the floor beneath them
opens the tracks fanged the tunnel
swelling back into the throat
of the river the street lights
toiling with yield the teeth loosened
filled with earth the cups blaze into petals
out of skulls bones bloom
books see their past lives as trees
flying like geese the cutlery flocks
many mouths unveiling house plants
seeing what we’ve done the phone rings
and everything is as bright as an eye
swallowing a bonfire your mother called
estoy pensando en ti
bullet-hole sized entries
a dios te bendiga
ribs smoothly driving out like antlers
te recibes mi mensaje?
the debris and rose of it all
death nodding with an umbrella in hand.
The fox on the road waiting for my chest
to say something.
veins into concrete.
skeletons of fish.
A farm dogs curiosity
on how a mountain stretches its tongue.
I want to tell the fox I’m sorry my eyes
have turned against me but my tongue
has killed itself.
Kept the candle lit
in my throat.
Making playlists for when
the ghouls come to play.
keep my body assembled for this long.
I spent the last showers of rain with my spine.
Finding my centre on the easel.
The heron flies like a river-dragon
gives me snail shells worth of emptiness.
The blue moth has come to visit
and you’re making graves
like you’re just beginning.
We fashioned wings from chewed
ginger and bankers marrow.
banners from spirals in ice.
Coffins with the names of oil companies.
Smoke from our palms.
Coalescing wretches to un-whiten
the sabotaged bloc.
The deer looks
at us understanding our closed hands.
There was nothing I could do for the man
who showed me a picture of his dead friend.
A Closet Goodbye
For Roy Adrian Curtis
you close the door hoping
your eyes peel off the sun
against god’s eyes
you lay your final bed
put out your cigarette
sipped from a cracked
tea-cup to playlists
singing you to sleep
with yourself inside
goodbye notes typed
constant like shattered faith
upward to a tinged answer
the damselfly admiring
as if waiting for summer to leak
out of the corrugated
memory of august
you describe the body
dancing in a bedroom
the rain rains so gently
your hands downward
to a dyed corpus
you close the door
with yourself inside
to chase the gleam
where sand castles
float above the sea
a magician sits
with their books
under a bridge
analysing a tool
brushing the fire
naming the wreckage
is it you steps away
from the protest
passing a flower
Carlos Mauricio Rojas is a British Welsh Colombian poet based in London. They are a recipient of The Invisible Presence Programme for British and LatinX poets and writers 2018. Carlos is a co-founder of Maricumbia, a queer latinX dance night running from 2016-2019 raising funds to support the Latin American Peoples Disabled Project and The Save Latin Village campaign. They founded Paosar (poets action of solidarity and resistance) raising money to support LGBTQIA people in South America and in London. Their work has appeared on clavmag an online magazine for queer writers and they have performed their poetry at The Roundhouse and at Bare-Lit festival at The Albany Theatre. In October 2020 Carlos was selected for Poetry Lonon’s mentoring scheme where they are mentored by Vahni Capildeo. Carlos is currently working on their chapbook which will be their first printed body of work. Their poems talk about themes of migration, queer and trans existence, and multicultural heritage.
This publication is in Copyright. Carlos Mauricio Rojas, 2021.
The moral right of the author has been asserted. However, the Hythe is an open-access journal and we welcome the use of all materials on it for educational and creative workshop purposes.