She told me to listen to the silence;
count its beats, she said. My eyes slipped
closed but all I could hear were her chandelier
earrings swishing and her sticky fingers turning
the page of ave maria.

Hear the music. Feel the notes
within you as you breathe in
and out.
I would have rather felt his hand in mine.


The last time it rained, I tried to count the drops.
They hit the porch swing with such a force, I thought
a bird had flown into the windowpane again.

I licked my lips and drummed a finger
against my thigh.

One two three four, two two three four
three two three four.
Before I counted a full measure, the rain stopped.


It was before sunrise, but after sunset
when I heard the thump thump.
So I curled a hand around your arm, and placed
the other on your heart.

I counted:
one and two and three and four,
and two and two and three and four and
you kissed my hair and whispered –
voice deep and raw:
go back to sleep.

But I waited until you snored, laid my head
to your chest, and listened for the metronome.



Jennifer Stasak is a 23-year old University of Central Florida graduate who loves her God, her family and friends, and anything and everything that involves writing. Her work has been previously published in “Living Waters Review,” “Words,” “Epiphany Magazine,” and “The Anemone Sidecar,” among others. Dan Harmon once said that you should “find your voice and shout it” as a writer. It’s what Jennifer intends to continue to do through her work.


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