Playing 11
Lia, @snapshotsteve

we were fucked off of wine and brew.
your eyes were puppy off the ecstasy.

i told you i loved you
in the hotel room;
i didn’t mean it,
but i wanted to scream it.

i missed how it felt on my tongue
and my teeth.

it’s probably not fair,
you’re young
and the word has so much weight to it,
but i feel so weightless in saying it
and maybe that’s a problem.

i love you the way i love thai food
and the color blue on sunny days,
but i’ve never written about thai food
or sky blues, until now,
and i’m not always in the mood for them
like i am for you.

you make me hungry again.
i’m hungry right now,
so we should do the thai thing, vegan.
we’ll figure it out.

©Steven Cuenca



rose brown

you’re a rose

browned for lack of


or because the sun

smacked you around

for too long

or maybe you were


thirsty for something

you couldn’t reach

or maybe the opposite,

maybe you found the one thing

that gives you life and you

drowned, drowned

browned, brown like me,

but you’re still a rose

removed from the beauty

of living colors;

the softness of your flesh

has been replaced

with the beauty of the


the Crunch. i hear

when i have you in my palm

and bring you to my ear

and squeeze for that final sound:


“rose brown”

©Steven Cuenca

good manic morning


i’m not crazy

i’m manic today

and the hazy greys

look like lazy blues

i’m hungry again

and these straight-out-the-dryer

chicken fried socks

feel good on my feets

morning morning

i just wanna clean

my room to sunlight

i don’t want to fuck anything

i just want to stare at the mirror

and figure him out

i am love bubbling

floating to the center of everything

defying sciences and spirits of man

i know i’m not happy

my brain is playing a cheap trick

feeding me fast food, but

who cares who cares who cares

all that matters is the first three bites

where the vinegar and pickles shock your cheeks

and the buns coat the top of your mouth with sweetness,

the mush on your tongue tastes exactly how it’s advertised

and you know it’s not real but you don’t think about it,

you just enjoy it for the moment,

while your breath grows heavy

and your face starts feeling greasy

and you smell like onions

and your body is preparing itself

to crash violently back into depression.

“good manic morning”

©Steven Cuenca





ig: @snapshotsteve

there’s a monster in the closet
it’s shaped like a mother and two little boys
it has this dance, where it trembles
up and down, side by side

and there’s another monster
it’s outside of the closet
it’s bigger and stronger
and it’s drunk

there’re two musics in the room
one sings:
hide-and-seek, peek-a-boo
we play this game
when he drinks a few

and the second sounded like:
your father is the smartest man i ever met
your father is so beautiful
you’re going to be just like him
you’re going to be just like him
you’re going to be just like him


©Steven Cuenca


none of it was important

doin’ it. @snapshotsteve

a father was murdered.

i was 4

and i was told he died in a car accident.

my mother told me the truth

years later, as an adult,

and i avoided eye contact

because i couldn’t mirror her pain.

a car, a man, he died he died he died

and none of it was important.


an old man gathered the kids,

he attempted to explain a Pink Floyd song.

i was 12

and all of the kids avoided eye contact

as he fixed his own

to carve the minds of the youth

word by word, beat by beat

and none of it was important.


a drug dealer was robbed.

i was 16

and he sent us to get his money back.

i avoided eye contact,

as they destroyed his body.

all i did was punch his dick three times,

and none of it was important.


a boy violated another.

i was 20.

i was inebriated, i was conscious,

but i did not go against the grain.

i avoided eye contact and found that

my physical body is not important.


a first week back in the city,

i was 21

and the subway smelled like shit.

there was a lady standing a few feet away

with feces dropping out of her jeans.

the passengers avoided eye contact

as she politely picked up the pieces

and none of it was important.


a marriage dissolved.

i was 22

as i ran the mathematics of divorce

and future holidays in my head.

i avoided eye contact

while patiently listening to

both parties, both stories

and none of it was important.


a girlfriend cheated.

i was 23.

i knew when it started, and i knew when we ended.

i avoided eye contact

as i shook his hand after their sleepover.

we lasted 5 years

and none of it was important.


i always figured our lives were circles,

that everything we’re living has happened already

and are happening simultaneously.

that we are here, then and everywhen.

my circle is a chase for love.

i’m going to die for it,

and be born through it a moment after.

And maybe my circle is a wheel,

and maybe it’s rolling towards something.

i just know that i can breathe better,

think better,

and love better,

when i remind myself

that i am not important.

“none of it was important”

©Steven Cuenca


the energy about me

the energy about me

is purple

it’s anemic, it’s vampyre

it can only tether to one person at a time


it turtles in public

it’s a shy seeker


it smelled like her

it doesn’t anymore

it knows three words and it never lies

“the energy about me”

© Steven Cuenca



This is my Brother, Ket (sisterBrother)

my brother, Ket

sisterBrother, He

never looked comfortable in a dress, she

only wore black black black, He

came out, came out, but not to me, we

never had the conversation

never had the conversation

never had the conversation

never had the conversation


“just a phase,” just a face

just embrace the different

the weird, the old, the new

it’s not you, “it’s not you,” it’s not you


katie katie, He was my

pretty lady, pretty Boy

my sister, Brother, 3rd Brother

i was broken, i was pacing, i was scared

He held me in His powerful arms

my Brother held me


This is my little brother, Ket.

“This is my Brother, Ket (sisterBrother)”

©Steven Cuenca