Secret and Invisible Folds into the Visible

Elisa Gonzalez


Time for another round of Broadside Thirty, our showcase for poems in thirty lines or less by poets thirty or younger. This time around, we present a new poem by Elisa Gonzalez.



after Augustine


Lately I have been lullabying myself to sleep with erotic fantasies. Familiar vision: my psychiatrist, pinning me against his door, gold lotus print I recognize from the Met trembling next to us. Wall calendar shaking over his shoulder. As I pass into dreaming, the woman pushes me into a bathroom stall to show me the black bootlace dangling from my vagina. This is how they control you, she whispers, and presses the aglet’s silver tip with her manicured thumb. The Editor would delete all of this, protecting me from my propensity to humiliate myself. But I have a young man’s mind, deranged with desire.


Elisa Gonzalez is Puerto Rican, the oldest of eight children, and was raised in Ohio. She graduated with a B.A. in English literature from Yale University and is currently enrolled in New York University’s M.F.A. program in creative writing. She, predictably, now lives in Brooklyn.

Submissions to Broadside Thirty (poets under thirty years old may submit up to three poems, each under thirty lines) or any other categories on The Open Bar may be sent to with the category name in the subject line.