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Community Responses to Othello: Jessica Young

Community Responses to Othello

STC’s vision is to create theatre that ignites a dialogue and that connects classic works to our modern world—this vision is especially true for Ron Daniels’ production of OthelloIn the context of world events, this tragedy is one of the classics that seems most timely, relevant and urgent.

For that reason, we have invited some members of our community to craft responses to Othello and to all of the questions this production poses in whatever form calls to them—whether that means poems, songs, pictures, essays, stories or anything in between. We hope these responses, which will be published online throughout the run of the show, will help further the dialogue between STC and the community and help provide our audiences with another lens to view this current production.

(We’re remounting Othello for our 2017 Free For All! Learn how to get tickets.)

Now, without further introduction, please enjoy the response to Othello from poet Jessica Young:

48 Hours of Desdemona

To wake and find your voice is gone.
To speak—to try to speak—but only

wisps come out. At night, in bed, able
only to lift your hand into the space

above your bodies—desperate for it
to contrast against the dark expanse,

the far-away ceiling. To speak words.
Then sentences. Pleas. Promises. But not

be heard. To be heard but not listened to.
Listened to, but not believed. Now, hush.


Jessica Young’s award-winning poetry can be found in her book, Alice’s Sister (Turning Point, 2013), her chapbook, and her individual poems in The Massachusetts Review and Rattle, among others. She attended the University of Michigan (MFA) and MIT (BS). She lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and their cats.


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