Wanting to be MagritteCeci n’est pas une pipe.
–René Magritte

We had The Velvet Underground, The Jim Carroll Band,
The Jesus and Mary Chain. We drank cabernet, at night,
In the August heat. We spoke of love and excess,
Found that such an oak was in the acorn. You could hear
Lou Reed’s Romeo Had Juliet between the dry sips.

We met euphoria, ennui, ecstasy, melancholia.
We were love-drunk from the brazen arrows
Of a SKA-drunk Cupid.

We plunged our hands into the night,
Saw the black ripples cross the expanse
Of stars, stars like diamond-colored vents
Beneath water.

We watched the rippling dark, waited for
The consequent. Watched as desire coiled
Round the hope in which it was written.

I had a picture of you holding a picture of me
Holding a picture of you—how we wanted
To be Magritte!

And I remember you, at the charity dinner,
Drawing a picture of a jalapeño and writing
Underneath: “This is not a pepper.”

I turned to you and said:
This life of ours is not a poem.

Author: Kjell Nykvist

Bryan Damien Nichols was born in Houma, Louisiana, on August 30, 1978. He earned a B.A., summa cum laude, in Philosophy from Baylor University, and a J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law. He has practiced law in both Houston and in the Rio Grande Valley. Bryan currently lives in Los Fresnos, Texas, with his loving wife, Michelle. In his poetry, Bryan writes through two different heteronyms: (1) Kjell Nykvist; and (2) Alexander Shacklebury. Generally speaking, Kjell provides an optimistic worldview, while Alexander provides a pessimistic worldview. Kjell and Alexander are not mere “extensions” of Mr. Nichols; instead, each heteronym is a unique character with his own personality, poetic style, and biography. Biographies of the heteronyms are available upon request.


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