number one

by Catherine Orlando


image by Simay Yildiz




Stop right there

and don’t run your eyes

heavy and languid and physical

like a touch along my clavicle

like my hunger like

the fact that I couldn’t stomach

lunch or dinner today or

dinner yesterday or the day before

that. So don’t. Don’t run your

eyes along that like its something

good like its something you like

like its there for You.


Stop. Don’t pinch or poke

or prod my thin pale pasty

white skin

yellowing and yellowing

with each cigarette and each

minute second hour

day I spend

lengthening my face and

taking in my





don’t question the little hills the rumpled

goose-flesh the signs i’m

frozen because no one

knows no one’s

noticed no one

sees the full grown girl


still can’t keep her breaths




don’t pause for a

moment at the way my

blouse flutters and jumps over

my sped up lub-dub

because my heart is

racing to the

finish line

and doesn’t want

to be caught.


About the author

Catherine Orlando is a rising junior at the Johns Hopkins University. She’s spent the first half of her time in college not really knowing what to do with herself, and thinks that’s okay. After exploring options other than creativity, art, writing, etc., she’s returned to what she truly knows and truly loves. In response she’s recoiled back into her past, creative self. Her poetry is some of the outcome.



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