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Suburban Hill














Table Rock; Pickens, SC

For Rayanne


We shared a tent once near the Blue Ridge Mountains

and, in the middle of the night, I woke to pee.

You refused to leave the tent to guard me from bears

in the empty forest with only three other campers nearby.


The next night, I woke without feeling in my feet.

I nudged you awake to tell you I had frost bite.

You told me to shut up, that I worried

too much.

You told me I’d be fine in the morning—

how we’d packed


my car heading north through

the banks of snow. We sang along to music

knowing what the other would want to hear.




Begin Again


We would count

back from three,

plunging our heads under


all at once, and I would count

seconds faster

than they were,

convincing myself

that I lasted longer.


You taught me how to hold

my breath longer, so we

could scare our parents

by playing dead in the

pool in our backyard.

I learned to count the

seconds not as I wanted them to,

but as they happened.


And still I’m holding my breath,

waiting for you to gasp for air.





About The Author

Cassie Osvatics is a recent graduate of the University of Maryland with a B.A. in English and a graduate of the Jiménez-Porter Writers’ House for poetry. During her time at the university, she was a photographer and reporter for UMD Writer’s Bloc. Cassie is a concert photographer for Bandsintown, and a creative writing intern at Writopia Lab D.C.”