the war seemed to be ending—so were my salad days.
today i spilled my secrets out like its’ dressing,
still paranoid about how I should carry the weight of my
future everything. i lack integrity. i am stuck in the waste

& in a phase. i notice there is glue to my chapped lips
as they mouth for impunity without a reply. i wish
i could turn to water, share a double entendre with the
mirror on the wall. turn to water & walk on it. turn

to water & my boat would float on without having
to worry about buoyancy and whatever’s in between
the waves that’s all too chaotic + turbulent, that vilifies my failure.
perhaps this dream of seasickness is just telling me to wake up. as

i reach the pier, time is splashed with water no one believes is
sacred. my race is run. every ship has sailed through
all sorts of salted / unsalted unconscious oceans. my neck
turns in directions my heart cannot fathom. we all skip beats.


Ottavia Paluch is a high school freshman who lives in Ontario, Canada. She enjoys watching hockey and trying to look intellectual by listening to Radiohead, U2 and other lovely alternative rock bands. Her work is published in Body Without Organs and forthcoming in Navigating the Maze's 2018 anthology.