A Journal

"I'm going to come back to West Virginia when this is over. There's something ancient and deeply-rooted in my soul. I like to think that I have left my ghost up one of those hollows, and I'll never really be able to leave for good until I find it. And I don't want to look for it, because I might find it and have to leave".----Breece D'J Pancake, in a letter to his mother. 

Annabel Brazaitis



Anxiety Dream


My daughter is born a teacup pig. All over town there are parties for my daughter the teacup pig.
Birthdays, weddings, graduations, anniversaries, all kinds of parties. There are so many that the
streets are lined with confetti and the people in the funeral homes are all wearing pastel dresses
and glitter top hats. The parties are beautiful and involve completely normal human people. I
suddenly do not remember why I came. My daughter is hungry and I am repulsed by the soprano
squeak of her voice. I am then repulsed by my repulsion when my daughter demands a slice of
cake. I resist the urge to close my fist around her tiny, precious neck. I tell her there is no cake
available because the partygoers have begun to pack themselves into silver boxes and the only
thing remaining is a single purple balloon. My daughter cries tears that are too big for her
teacup pig face and I begin to worry that she will drown in herself. I begin to worry that she will
drown in the cracked china cup I carry her in. I give her the purple balloon with the intent
of stopping her tears, which is really the intent of saving her life. When my back is turned she
crawls out of the cup and floats away.



Her horizontal stomach / is filled with liquid / again & this / is all that comes / with the
vomit / an ocean spreading / across the kitchen floor / & my sister’s jaw / is locked open /
with disuse / her mouth / slack / no longer / functional / & I eat it / I eat her mouth / & it
becomes / my mouth / like how a bear / will eat its young / to take / away the sickness / I
ingest / because my sister / cannot / I fill myself / with her pain / & pray this will be /




I recently purchased a miniature copy of Macbeth from an antique shop in London. I find it comforting to know that I may slip a book into my pocket whenever I feel the urge to do so.

Annabel Brazaitis is a high school student living in West Virginia. Her work has been recognized by the Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award and the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.