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  • Writer's pictureMarías at Sampaguitas

Poetry by Alexander P. Garza

Pocket Talisman

The blade of the flame

flickers reflection on the edge

of the lighter, eternal

incendiary tool. Its red button

on top releases lighter fluid flames.

The wheel with a protective sheath,

the strip of metal against the spur,

and a hole where spark meets liquid:

the forever element levels

cities, forests, and oceans,

black surface ink puddles

like wandering boats floating

and on fire. My hands capture sun’s skin

peelings in the small plastic encasing,

visions of sharks and marlins

across my pocket talisman.

Alexander P. Garza (he/him) is a Mexican-American poet from Houston, TX. His work has appeared in Toyon, Indianapolis Review, Dissections, Star*Line and others. He is a graduate student in the Program for Writers at University of Illinois - Chicago. Visit him on Instagram/Twitter, @alexanderpgarza and

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