Condemned to Accretions by Michael Caylo-Baradi

—after Jeremy Keith Villaluz's "Enclave"

from "Enclave" by Jeremy Keith Villaluz, 2016

from "Enclave" by Jeremy Keith Villaluz, 2016

The room becomes another state of ascension, a saturation of heartbeats oscillating up and down a desert of necklines, goading time to discover the newest face of Narcissus.  This heartless god only wants the buoyant episodes of beauty, floating on the slope of lips to rescue us from the predilections of our abyss. 

Later, the elevator’s descent is not a return to darkness, but another form of breathing becoming a city of lights, burning through depths of guilt we bury in the sweetest good-mornings to our families in the suburbs.

But then a broken light in the hotel's parking lot relegates us to shadows once again, where tongues restore the energies of contact sport, to summon beasts, condemned to scripts still unknown to the perennial innocence of animal logic.

Michael Caylo-Baradi lives in California. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Galway Review, Blue Fifth Review, Blue Print Review, The Common, Eclectica, elimae, Eunoia Review, FORTH, Galatea Resurrects, Ink Sweat & Tears, Local Nomad, MiPOesias, Otoliths, Our Own Voice, poeticdiversity, Philippines Free Press, Poetry Pacific, Prick of the Spindle, and elsewhere.  An alumnus of The Writers’ Institute at The Graduate Center (CUNY), he is among a dozen guests featured in Eileen Tabios' first book-length haybun poetry collection 147 Million Orphans (MMXI-MML) (2014).  He has also written essays for New Pages, PopMatters, and The Latin American Review of Books.


Jeremy Keith Villaluz is an artist currently working on themes of migration and landscape through contemporary art and photography. An experienced educator, currently teaching at San Francisco State University and Skyline College, his recent work deals with the paradox of immigrant imaginaries amidst suburban development and resegregation.

His current project, Enclave, deals with his hometown of Daly City—a suburban town neighboring San Francisco that is also home to one of the densest populations of Filipinos outside of the Philippines. With the rapid socioeconomic and infrastructural shift the San Francisco Bay Area is experiencing, Enclave places Villaluz’ experiences in this established immigrant community at center and investigates the slippage of the socio-political legacies, relentless gentrification, and intergenerational families experiencing multiple notions of time, delay, and success.