Three Poems by Sy Brand


Behind Paintings

You put too many holes

in the wall, fool, raincrasher,

sodden in plaster and future ire we

hold our breath as eyes peer through

from hidden space, crawl beneath

the floor, watcher in the attic,

let us go! You think I can bear

the smell? Or the feel of the vents

pushing out and drawing in

this heavy room, leave us be!

I can destroy enough on my own.

Glass Only

glass only do not

put your cigarette 

ends in me

or sodden cardboard still

warm and faintly smelling

of lip gloss which 

colours the corners of

your lips fill me 

with shards 


If we watched the city crumble

and held hands 

as we crushed its past

underfoot, what would we leave


My voice – a tad too low,

exposing – tossed into the dying

flames of the corner shop,

your night terrors

left in the old church,

whose bolted doors could not hold

to your new fist, 

which sea must we split

to take our truth

somewhere we can touch it

to another's?

How many times must we create

Atlantis before that touch

builds a people who will not sink? 

For now we will walk,

upon the water,

hands touched together,

and feel the horizon so solid

among all that falls around us.


Sy Brand is a queer non-binary Scottish poet. They write through the haze of cat-/child-induced sleep deprivation to make sense of gender, relationships, and ADHD. Their work has been published in Popshot Quarterly, Perhappened, and Capsule Stories, among others. Find them at and on Twitter @TartanLlama.


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