What I Hate About the Stars

by Ottavia Paluch

after Steven Espada Dawson


is that they’re all dead.

Whenever I look up

the first thing I notice

is the pain shooting

from my trapezius

instead of from the sky.

It takes me a million years

to do the simplest things—

right now, I am burning

a bright, beautiful body within

my own flesh. This is complicated:

it’ll be done within the hour.

I keep forgetting that the end

of the world is so many light years

away. The body within me

is red, gigantic, looks nothing

like me. I am birthing

the apocalypse. Singing twinkle,


twinkle, little star to the apocalypse,

knowing exactly what it is, and yet

still wondering what I am,

what we both are becoming.

Ottavia Paluch lives in Ontario, Canada. Her work is published or forthcoming in Four Way Review, Gigantic Sequins, Kissing Dynamite, Ghost City Review, and Alexandria Quarterly, among other places.

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