Elizabeth Olenzek

Eventually you must

stop pounding the piano’s deep chords,

stop your fistfights and whiskey bottles

lined up like loose teeth on the windowsill.

You’ve shaken hands with the raw-meat

feel of factory work, men and metal,

Thursday night bowling league of cursing and smoke.

Drop your hand, let go. Fill your palm

with seed, dried berries, the

delicate wings of moths.

Offer it to the sparrow caged between

your ribs, button-eyed and

swaying in heat, peeping gently

in response to thuds and booms that

shake its nest from outside.

Elizabeth Olenzek is an undergraduate at the University of Michigan. She studies English, creative writing, and education, and she enjoys fermenting foods and running. She currently lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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