Three Poems by Tommy Pico

From Nature Poem


When James hugs me hello

he stoops

(bc he is very tall) 

nuzzles his forehead into the hook

of my neck

takes a big, long sniff

growls soft and low. 

James is a stone


dummy. But when he does that?

If this was an 80's hair band music video

I wd totally groupie

toss my frillies onto the stage of James.


From Nature Poem


I want to be the one who eats the candy

at the Felix Gonzalez-Torres exhibit, not the one splashing his face with cold
water in the bathroom

but we r who we r

like jambalaya.

Let's say I was raised on television and sugar and exhausted parents working
every job that poked its head from the tall grasses of opportunity

who didn't go to college but still read poetry to each other and wrote songs
and made sculptures and read law documents at the beach while I threw like
seaweed on my cousins

but opportunity to what?

My current envy list includes ppl who make decisions, in general. Envy is a
shit tit. I meet a boy and I miss him. Time, a paragon of confidence, taps me
on the shoulder and asks

If I get legit anxiety when someone calls from a number I don't know, cos it's
like—who still calls?

I've always wanted to know, I say, why they call you father

You can't reflect and decide at the same time. If language is a structure borne
of the desire to communicate, can I really be blamed when Money says anxi-
ety is only real when the face breaks
 and I'm chipping like paint?


From Nature Poem


I have chosen—you have chosen—he or she had chosen—we have chosen—
they have chosen

whose origin word, ceosan, meant something more like to taste or to try,
"only remotely related to choice"

an illusion of capitalism, like control

Ppl often look unfazed by Kenyan university massacres and the onslaught of
James Franco. Behavior is mutable. Mirrors love attention.

Like everyone, 
I read a Choose Yr Own Adventure w/my fingers keepin tabs on various
forks in the text, to backtrack when reachin a dead end

How often to you choose hunger, or cheese burger? A space in btwn is hard
to see when you're all borderlands—

We're on the rooftop of the Wythe Hotel. It suggests exposure. It shoots up
like teeth, the cool breeze sobering like a newly sober ex
turning softly into peaches from the light behind the bottles

He cups my neck (you hate all his friends) The hairs on his face like an
English garden (his sister's a racist) Taller than I remembered (he played you
like a dolly then tossed you aside c'mon TEEBS)


the past in oneself, like a word