beach honda

I hope the buildings swallow me
and spit me out on the boardwalk
I hope I crawl towards what we call
and old
I think I am an octopus with 8 legs
and 8 souls
and they all wanna be a lady who crotchets

the radio is laughing at me
I was yelling in the crowd
not that long ago

the uber driver
can smell tobacco
from my broken nail
and swim suit

i left so much sand in the back seat
he called his honda
the beach

– sheila c.



what time is it there? 

are you awake? 

you are becoming a caricature under my breath

I dream about you, still 
still, I know 

I have a freshly pressed image
of you screaming on the train
in czech

waving your soft hands indiscriminately 

how measured they can be 
how infallible they can be 

– sheila c 

blue lit dream 

I have a blue lit dream of you.

you are cackling bent over the tatters 

of a tire 

calling me "puddin pop".

I detest it 

and you laugh so hard 

your knees buckle.

I shut my mouth tight 

and grit my teeth through a smile.

your hands are open 

on my thighs 

and I rest my head 

right on the crane of your neck.

we are stranded on the 1-10. 

I bore this place in the back 

of a diner.

I imagined it the way you imagine 

your lungs oxygenating blood 

as you're running,

platelets swelling up 

and such. 

you have taught me

i can paint a picture with ache,


and yearning. 

– sheila c. 

grand romances 

I don’t know about grand romances 

you know like sunset scenes in movies from 1995 

big haired shadows and slow bearing kisses 

like you knew they’d end up together, right? 

I don’t know about dudes who bring you flowers on bended knees 

because they may or may not have fucked your friends friend

you asked “how could you?”

he said  “right now, that’s not important”

face bursting through a red bouquet 

I don’t know about eternal love 

but at night when the heat 

fills my densest bone

he turns on every fan in the house

he brings water and gently pours it down my throat

he ices down my neck 

he says “honey, it’s alright.. it’s alright. 

he clutches my hands 

“is that okay? is that better?” 

and I lie. 

I don’t know about grand romances 

but every night 

he says he’d trade his healthy body for mine

-sheila c. 


when I was a girl in the way 

you are a girl with ponytails 

 and ghost scratches 

I was privileged to pretend 

I was Darwin

cataloguing wings 

and beaks 

and smooth feathers 

cracking open daylight

 with the roosters 

the king of my moor 
now I am a girl in the way 

you are a girl 

when you’re impractical 

and unlikely to settle 

I  look outside my window 

to see the cardinal breast pulsing 

and I feel my gut start to turn 

i hear my grandfather whispering 

he is dead but his voice is not 


when you were a girl 

you broke two limbs 

from the avocado tree 

I planted 

your elbow healed

but the avocados 

never bloomed again. 

– sheila cordova


I contain a certain silence that bends with time 

I tell myself 

this is the best option 

the only option 
the world disintegrating like a crumble cake 

and my coffee on the table 

ready to soak it in 

have I given up? 

that can’t be 

there is more than gin pools

and drowning in fountains 

made of right now…

because not now 

not this second 

not this thing


I  feign a laugh 

and a whim 

of something 

something distant 


and within. 

– sheila c.

what is it about tectonics? 

I’m aware of the shift 

in continental plates 

below me 

the hard ground 

is somehow evaporating 

while growing 

it doesn’t cease 

to bore me. 

I am rock 

slowly eroding 

 cliff side 


core and crumble 


I am contained by valley 

as a split 

a dual terrain

beginning in mist 

so moist the air 

is drip 



a deft step 

or two 


rounded peaks


all the voice 

inside the valley 


and pours into the 


a bloom 

is being bore 

before me 

– s.c.