‘2 Poems’ by Ottavia Paluch

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Speaking in Volumes

we were at a concert
there was a band called Your Dreams opening for the Nightmares
it felt all too real
we shoved earbuds into our eyes so we wouldn’t see any minor scales

the crowd buzzed
cheering for something we couldn’t understand
was it the fact that they were there
existing desperate alive

the seating was general admission
like prom but with more people more commotion
we looked around to see if we could spot anyone we knew
yet barely knew ourselves

we got shirts that said the band’s name on it
they were too black too grey too big for us
while the Nightmares sang “broken dreams”
people tripped & fell on lyrics they couldn’t remember

we listened to them swear & sing about things we didn’t do
heard nostalgia in waves of take me back take me
back TAKE ME yeah we took ourselves here for a reason
to be more than just ourselves

it got louder and louder
until there was nothing left to hear

our father, who art in somewhere

Be careful when you call for divine intervention:
it will wreak havoc when it comes.
This I knew, and thus, I devised ways
of containing it for ages, holding back the wind,
the symphonic swell, the buildup of earwax, of problems.
Yet despite all the finesse and
fitness I carried, I remained a chaotic,
overwhelming soul. Last night I asked myself
how many more of these unwanted revelations
from this small thing bursting out of me can I take?
God said that it will and can and shall help me
but through forms so elusive that I’ll still remain a stranger
on secret paths. Let me catch my breath, I’ll say, so I can
pray a little longer.

Ottavia Paluch is a disabled high school student who lives in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. She can often be found complaining about math homework and listening to U2 and My Chemical Romance. Her work is published in The Rising Phoenix Review, Gigantic Sequins, The Cerurove, Alexandria Quarterly, and Body Without Organs, among other places.

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