PC: María Astrea
my father's biggest fear
that night I confessed to him and the others
I saw the fear on his face
he feared I’d be like her
& I know I got these dark thoughts from her
her tempest were thoughts
that formed at her conception
they ranged from misery to mania
but my storm is just misery
& while it rages the same
I won’t let my storm consume me like hers did
she let in the water of her mind & drowned
it’s in this way she taught me to swim
About The Author - Hanna Reed Ketting
"Hanna Reed Ketting grew up all over the USA, but currently lives in NYC. Above all else, Hanna is a lover of the written word, but she's interested in many things. She loves her one-eyed cat, her many plants, and walking up and down Broadway. She can be found on Instagram at @hannareedketting."
PC: Juliette Badia
This language barrier is something new to me. I thought I only ever needed my eyes to see. The connection between my ears and mind are confused. This language part of my brain has never been used. I’m surrounded by those who speak in their native tongue. Over a grand feast, in this conversation I feel shunned. Everyone laughed and shared stories only they could understand. Not being involved, this conversation and food taste bland. I slaved to prepare a feast only meant for kings and queens. I’m tired and exhausted, I want to remove my makeup and dream. But he is persistent, “The show must go on” “Don’t be rude”. So, sit straight, pretend to eat and smile in this exotic filled room.
I began to question my presence and why the fuck I was there, when I would look at someone while they spoke even though I couldn’t hear. Apparently, everyone knew English, but communication is easiest when they don’t have to translate when their minds are the busiest. I understand and am respectful towards their preference but where is the respect back when I’m sitting in silence; irrelevance. In a room filled with a beautiful native language I once adored I excused myself to the bathroom when I just couldn’t take it anymore. There were too many conversations that I could not participate in and by the looks of it now, it’s too late into the party to even begin.
He comes back in to see what is wrong and why I haven’t returned. He said I’m not being polite, and people are becoming concerned. I explained how I felt, and he understood and said “That’s normal.” but instructed I needed to suck it up, drink some tea and be more formal. He said the guest kept asking for me and wanted to get to know me but where was that interest throughout the entire gathering?
Now that I’m at my wits end and have retreated to my room, everyone suddenly has an interest to see how this flower blooms? As the halls grow quiet, everyone leaves and excuses were made for my absence, sitting and looking pretty is not something I will do just for status. I am more than just a lovely picture, a trophy, a pretty face to look at, a bragging right, a status booster, shit I’m so much more than that. I have a mind filled with beautiful concepts; a heart filled with love. I have so many amazing qualities I don’t expect anyone else to be proud of.
About The Author - Destiny Star
Destiny Star Portillo is an explorer of the mind and a self-proclaimed healer. With a degree in psychology and her strong empathic abilities, her mission is to help others understand themselves as well as each other through photography, poetry, song writing and creative visual content. Her online presence focuses on the importance of introspection, empowerment and self-love. Her photography has been published in Venefica Magazine vol. 2.