haolun xu

Untitled Document

I came back from my days-long trip to Rhode Island, and I went directly to her.

I came back when she’s sleeping. I wake her up and it scared us both,


She’s horrified at what the sea has done to my body.

My belly engorged and bald too, fat with oysters and wines and steaks

even though I only ate vegetables and fruits raw the whole trip, eating out of grocery bags,


I stink of sand, and in my hands you can see seaweed growing into my fingernails.

When she points it out, my back hurts so much that it’s proof that my body is inside-out again,


We fight,


do you ever want to stop this, do you ever want to leave


Aren’t you sick of me, I feel sick of me,

and I’m so tired, I drowned for days out there,


She watches from the corner as I perform CPR for an hour on myself.

She leaves in the middle, because she can’t watch.

When she comes back, we drift off quietly,

and her hair floats in the bed with the lilies, and later she asks me what’s wrong,


We sleep-talk,


I say I have so little,

I have almost nothing now,

I have only myself to blame and to love-


Haolun Xu is 24 years old and was born in Nanning, China. He immigrated to the United States in 1999. He was raised in central New Jersey and is currently studying Political Science and English at Rutgers University. Transitioning from a background in journalism and activism, he spends his time between writing poetry and the local seashore.