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August 15, 2023

2 X-Files Poems

Samia Saliba

yeah that’s a bleeping dead alien body if i ever bleeping saw one

probe your fingers along the dead or living unhuman

musculature. have you ever touched an alien body?


of course, our human sets of hands have traced each

other, each of us alien in our own way. have you


ever loved an alien body? once the spit my human

body makes dripped off my tongue in the shape


of a moon, filled the craters of your chest with water.

a rover identified this as a sign of life or at least


capacity to sustain. a government probe identified your

moon-well body as an asset. they seized control &


initiated a cover up. as an act of resistance i wanted

to strip you clean i wanted to uncover. i am not


afraid to know what’s out there. everything that wants

to kill you is carbon & alive. already here. the probe


never asks if this alien has ever loved an alien body.

only concerned with the possibility of life & not


its practice. you tell me love can touch us across

eons, illuminated by the curvature of celestial bodies


too hot to hold. when you touch my face, despite the

heat, i believe this is true. i mean i want to believe, i


want to believe, i want to believe, i want

to believe,



title from The X-Files season 3 episode 20, “Jose Chung’s From Outer Space”





on my birthday i cry over too much astrology. i

used to believe in intricate celestial calculations but

now i think i only believe in tuesdays. is that

anything? i was born on a tuesday, thrashing around

like a snake. it rained for 100 days that summer, and

me in the middle of it. if i were religious this might

make me biblical. umbilical. even dana scully knows

the planets can make you mean. murderous. flirtatious

with your coworker. oh, i’m getting ahead of things.

do let me know when the moment’s right. when we’re

ripe with electricity. to be born is to be imbued. like

a heart with a pulse. like a femur with a pulse.

is this helping? on the internet girls in beautiful rooms

tell me that if i believe in something i can make it

real. they tell me to repeat it out loud until it appears

before me. after hours of trying all i can conjure is

an apology. i’m not even sure if it’s mine. i’m sorry

i never opened that email. sorry i did. i’m sorry

we never tried psychedelics together. i’m sorry we

told you to break up with your girlfriend, sorry we

convinced you she was a vampire. sorry we were

right :/ sorry i never closed that bank account at the

bank down the street from your old house. from where

i used to get 7 am coffees and try to talk to the baristas

who wanted nothing to do with me. to them i was young

like wine before it is wine. i’m sorry they were right, sorry

i cried in the back corner in that ugly velvet chair. sorry they

brought me tea without saying a word and i couldn’t even

gasp out a thank you. sorry i cared so much when no one

would look at me. sorry if i was a ghost and held it against

you. sorry there’s $11.93 in that bank account. sorry i could

have bought us both a coffee with that money. sorry i didn’t.

sorry i still could.



titled and written after The X-Files season 3 episode 13, “Syzygy”