Brother, Wafered Paper, Almond Man

I’ve tried to cling onto
the bland vanilla of
a shelled heart:

almond-molded, unprocessed
materialism, my brother’s
own i(s)land.

There, he’s so hot, paper bills
disintegrate in the back of his
irises, inside his flimsy dream

Impatience bites at him,
when it matters to his taste.
When he’s hungry, he latches
onto desperation, demands

green, abundant.

Young, immature fruit:
the growth of an unripe
almond husk, similar in
thinness to a wafered texture
of a dollar bill, rolling paper.

We spent time searching
once, in the streets of
Marbella, for the budding
temptation—my brother’s

encapsulated in joint-
ed pleasures, mine in
the charcoaled burn
of the castañas
I imagined were the drupes
roasting, tinfoiled on the pans.

We both rely on helpless
habits, his in his blunt
pride, fuming, mine
in the constant tendency
to pull at the almond’s hull,

until the skin

like how we both fall
in our deliberate



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