Sebastian Moya is a poet and a writer of fiction. He was raised between El Paso, TX and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua and graduated with a degree in Narrative Structure from the University of Southern California. Most of the time, he is bustling between Los Angeles and the Borderland.
I Miss Paris
Literal to a touch
describing intermittent bites
is certainly a thing for December
how can I carve, how can I know –
I miss Paris
Not like the French cafe on Grand I’d go to after therapy.
it was owned by an Algerian couple
and when I tried to pronounce caffe latte they’d laugh at me
but give me extra Biscottis for trying
Not like The Rolling Stones
Not like counting palms on La Brea
for the fifth time in a week
Not like Friday mass
held around concert tickets
confessions at the kitchen counter
conferring about who we wanted to fuck or kill.
marriage was a sacrilegious word then
Not like waking up in jeans
an empty water cup on your friends coffee table
and the whiskey rising from you
like someone you just tried to forget
No, I don’t miss Paris like that
I miss Paris like
corrupting someone with a cigarette
even though she “never does this”
and secretly you hope it’s because you convinced her
and at least she’d taste rotten too
Like I miss David Bowie
Like being afraid of a Thai menu
Like coming across a Tolstoy short story at fifteen
pretending to understand every word
when you could only hope to have a vague translation of deep grey
but knowing under the surface of impossibly long names
was the kicking condition
Like living in the Canyon
and smoking a joint on Mulholland
for a second a happy cog
in the perpetual dreamscape mechanism
doting on a sunset
the simplest, the free pleasure
Like before I knew Hollywood Cemetery
was a bunch of dead Russians
and a statue of Toto
and remembering Chris Cornell killed himself
I miss Paris like I miss wonder
I miss wonder, then
what can children do with castles?
more than I can with an afternoon.
a girl says she’s Elsa today;
she’s even wearing blue.
a boy does a Fortnite dance,
and wants to build higher.
I’ve stumbled upon a Motocross track,
I see them ripping through
a dirt path in my eyes.
they could be anywhere;
the beach is twenty minutes away.
these sands gave them other plans,
not knowing they’re in LA.
parents, a familiar sight.
with them everyday,
T-Rex arms at keyboards,
eyes stretched two feet.
now they wish their arms
were long enough to cover
the dirt trails, the height of castles
the edges of their peripheries.
how do they build a precious life?
their eyes are omnipresent
minds are steadfast.
do they reconstruct the past?
I am between tightening ropes,
wanting to pull
at either end of architecture.
siting in a sand-pit or play-pen.
across the sea of palms
I understand our age,
feeding on glass stories,
but the castles
are still in our minds.
I see us as pilgrims,
believing proximity is holiness.
when only few names can stand,
the rest become melted sand.
Letters are children too,
muscling each other out
on the tips of tragic ladders.
Netflix and KPMG,
what we want to be.
how did castles get us here?
of all the lives we constructed,
the dusty trail we sped down
brought us to the Holly Land.
I want my Wolverine backpack.
I could have a precious trail to protect.
I can rebuke the obelisks
but not on the terms
of my blueprints.
that’s what I tell my therapist
not that I can’t remember
it’s saved, somewhere
but where are the edits
the finished product
isn’t so ready for submission
it’s all so exhausting
insert garden metaphor
yes, I tend to it
but I much prefer wine
on the back porch.
the days have been dandelions
grown from abused soil,
some ash too.
what is blown away
will come again another day
it’s all so exhausting
the same exact skin?
no way, this is ridiculous
where can I upload a worldview
that makes me a happy asshole
or tell me about when it hurt,
false cherry trees felled.
deforestation in Brazil,
fires that caught the world.
truth and consequences
tell me about Warsaw
tell me about conquest
here, they cling to the Alamo
they managed to make something of it
I have no reason to complain,
we won the Alamo.
South America was tormented beneath
my ancestors need
for cheap groceries.
Whole Foods and hallow victories.
Keto is expensive, really
Lamicatal and GoodRX
will make something of me yet
before the wage gap eats my reader base
of pain I’ve known to love.
delightful to lament
all the days I’ve spent
processing what I need.
From the Editor:
We hope that readers receive In Parentheses as a medium through which the evolution of human thought can be appreciated, nurtured and precipitated. It will present a dynamo of artistic expression, journalism, informal analysis of our daily world, entertainment of ideas considered lofty and criticism of today’s popular culture. The featured content does not follow any specific ideology except for that of intellectual expansion of the masses.
Founded in late 2011, In Parentheses prides itself upon analysis of the current condition of intelligence in the minds of these young people, and building a hypothesis for one looming question: what comes after Post-Modernism?
The idea for this magazine stems from a simple conversation regarding the aforementioned question, which drew out the need to identify our generation’s place in literary history.
To view the types of work we typically publish, preview or purchase our past issues.