here lies a voice
with a Pentecostal tongue
that lives in all bodies and
embeds in our lungs

the voice acted as a schoolyard friend
who held my hand and danced across the hopscotch
every star in our sky was a dream for the future
as we twirled in innocence

my soulful city once resembled Atlantis
deep below the water and farther from heaven
many were crying and many were screaming
yet I heard only silence, for my reliable voice had abandoned me for the stars

I could not speak without the voice
yet created my own rivers into the bayous
I longed to move and continue on
yet lost my heart beneath the broken floorboards

my voice left me alone in a sinking world
I no longer looked to the stars

Above me

Above the stars

flew my voice
away from the darkness and into the sun
the voice of my life shone onto millions
while I looked to the floor
my voice took to the world

Lauren Cueto ’17

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