drawing of mug with anatomically correct heart inside, tied to a tea tag that reads 'EXCUSED FROM IMMORTALITY'

Excused from Immortality by Vi Khi Nao // cover by the author

Now you’ve no excuse, it’s time to love. Stuck in isolation, what have you been binge-watching, and was it each other? Perhaps the truest form of forgiveness is one’s final condemnation, the chance to assume the next reincarnation. You have been sentenced to death, my love—only now will you open your arms?


I am walking away from all of this

This unit of light

Words without any tongues

Mountains without climbers

Despair without consciousnesses

The rhythm of light

Chases each heartbeat out of its well

Of profusion

Where do tear ducts go if they don’t release

Nutrients of melancholy

Where do my purse sleep if I leave it

For the policeman of consumption

To keep it awake

Night and day

I am walking away from the sun

Teaching her that the tongue isn’t

An instrument of rebirth

But a way in without a way out

Yesterday the sun is forced to wear

A facemask made of cumulus clouds

A way for authors to hide her boobs amongst her books

A way for a brook to stop singing her way into an ocean

I am a heartache amongst ruins

Throw stones at me

Open this drain inside

When her mask is removed, like me and you,

The sun is capable of giving radiation

If only to terror & despair

Instead of my little brother whom I love

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