Poetry

Back Again – Camryn Garrett

Back Again

Florida

I am not the only one uncomfortable here

but I am one of few.

Jose says that there’s more here,

more than enough rainwater to go around.

If you work hard, you live well.

The way things used to be at home.

Clara and Carlos agree,

Mama just offers a rubbery smile.

Papa’s eyebrows furrow

every

night

because

he’s rebuilding.

I wear a smile that mirrors Mama’s at school,

where American children speak English

and smile

and joke.

I tell them about Castro and the beach and being almost wealthy.

They smile.

Is it the same as a joke?

I have not eaten plantains since the trip.

Sometimes tears roll down my cheeks at the thought.

We are so close, and so far, all into one,

but my friends are still a world away.

Mami used to grow plantains,

and I feel like I won’t remember the taste of sunshine.

The surf here is saltier,

the beach has less sun.

But I still spend all of my time mingling with the waves.

If I stare long enough, I can see my island.

The waves have the power to carry us to another shore,

the way they carried us here.

I want to love it here, the way the others do.

I do.

Papi says it’s harder to find things in plain sight.

America is a land paved with opportunity.

I will find it.

I will.

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Essay, Flash Fiction, Prose

Survival (Lesson One) – Caitlyn Beauchamp

I’m going to teach you a lesson. I’ll lay out each step, provide an outline, but you have to do the rest. You have to act. This is how to live life. This is how to survive.

First, I want you to wake up. Open your eyes and take a waking breath. Welcome this day. The past may flood back into your mind, but keep your focus on today.

Next, get out of bed. This is a bit harder. Moving takes motivation and determination, even though, it seems so simple on the outside. Sometimes it may feel like there is a weight on your chest, pinning you down, holding you back. You have to find the energy to fight back somehow.

If you made it to this step, feel proud. You kicked off your day when many others couldn’t even find the will to get out of bed. Now, go to your nearest mirror or somewhere you can see yourself. Once you’re there, look at your reflection and smile. Smile because you’re alive and that’s your most important job, your purest purpose, and you’ve done a great job so far.

So far, you’re moving and smiling. You’re doing great. You should eat something now or at least provide yourself with a beverage. Part of life involves taking care of yourself. It isn’t too hard, but I find some people fight themselves on the topic of it. They refuse to. They group it with bad acts. Remember, food keeps you alive. You’ve come so far already; why stop now?

Now, you have two options: rest or work. You get to choose, but keep that smile on your face. Whichever you do, make sure you do it right. With a smile. If you’re not going to put that effort into it then don’t do it at all.

Once the day comes to a close, I want you to sleep. Put everything aside and just lay down. Block everything else out. I know it can be tough shutting away your worries and thoughts, but you have to muffle them somehow. Your body and mind both need sleep, so try not to deprive them of it for petty things. I hope you’re still smiling. Now, repeat this tomorrow.

So, maybe this sounds like “faking it,” but I think this layout is efficient. You’re valuable, and you’re just constantly reminding yourself of that. Always keep moving. Always keep fighting. Never feel like today should be your last day. So, remember, do it right with a smile or don’t do it at all.

This concludes Lesson 1.

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Poetry, Prosetry

Random Musings – Brooke Safferman

Why is there a cotton ball in the Advil jar?

Did you tell him a secret that he couldn’t keep?

Did you tell him that you would always love him, before you threw him away?

And why, oh why, would you think that it would be any different this time?

I hope there’s peanut butter still left in the jar in the pantry

I can’t remember what happened last night but I do know that peanut butter was involved

So involved, why do we do this to ourselves?

Humans, trembling and vulnerable, yet we bring this cruelty into our own lives by our very own doings

Telling each other lies because the truth is awfully boring to bear and

Why do my fingers keep typing when all my mind wants to do is SCREAM!

This is not right, this is not right!

And let these words ring out, free and unadulterated (much unlike you and I)

And let them echo out into the vortex that is the nighttime

When you are alone and isolated

And a teenager.

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Poetry

Omnipresent – Karlee Sanders

with each sunrise,

with each sunset,
the mercies of God are made new.

all is forgiven,
anger is calmed,
grudges cease to exist.
there are no such things as worry,
doubt,
or fear.
everything for the glory of the Father.
everything is in His plan.
life on Earth is to life on Heaven as a flicker is to a flame.
we are to make disciples of all nations,
and show them the only way to secure their soul.
salvation needs to be brought,
through the grace of the Father,
the blood of the Savior,
and the presence of the Holy Spirit.
temptations will come,
sin will rise,
mistakes will be made.
but God will never leave.
He is here in His children.
forever and ever.
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Essay, Flash Fiction, Prose

Dear Diary – Camryn Garrett

4/13/15

I think that my life revolves way too much around things that aren’t happening, and things that aren’t real. People who I made up, and who only exist in my head. Scenarios and stories. Which is all fine and dandy, but eventually I feel like I’m sucked in. Stuck in my head.
And I don’t like the feeling very much.

The only issue is that I don’t really know what else to do when I’m outside of my head. A club? An activity? Like, what?

But I also feel like this all the time, even when I’m relatively sane. I don’t know what it is. Maybe there’s something wrong with me. I just sit around. Observing. Watching other people live their lives while I sort of just..drift through it, you know? And I’m tired, so I don’t really want to force myself to do anything.

I don’t know. I wish that I could be normal.

4/24/15
I feel like I haven’t been normal in a long time.

4/26/15

I want to die.

At this point, I think that I might always want to die. Maybe people learn how to live with it? But I don’t know. All I know is that I want to die, but I’m never going to do it myself because I can’t let go of what I hope might be.

I just wish that it weren’t so fucking difficult.

And no one ever knows what I’m talking about???

No one really seems to know what to do. So maybe there’s something wrong with me that can’t be fixed. Like, my fate was predetermined? So maybe I’m a cautionary tale. Maybe I could’ve done great things and people will point at me when trying to convince kids not to get sad.

5/3/2015

Sometimes I wish that I could be part of something. That I could feel important. I really don’t know how to describe it.

Ugh. I’m such an angsty teen. But the whole angsty teen idea is really stupid, because I feel like it takes away someone’s right to actually have feelings. Like, when a female has feelings, she’s sort of denied that right. As are teens.

5/7/2015

I don’t know why I feel so anxious. I just know that I do. I just feel like nothing I ever write will be good enough, even if I write it and love it with all of my heart.

I just wonder if it’s even worth it. But I

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Flash Fiction, Poetry, Prose, Prosetry

Isn’t It Funny? – Poppy Lam

Isn’t it funny how fire destroys everything that allows it’s soaring embers thrive?
The things that keep it alive?
kinda like us.
You suck the life out of me so you can glow even brighter,
 leaving me to cough up the ashes,
 Your crippling flames leave my fingertips blistered and burnt from the mere thought of you,
 but soon I will no longer be a source of fuel,
I was just a Serendipity as you were racing through the silhouettes of land.
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Poetry

Way Better Than Kettle Corn – Brooke Safferman

I fall in love with the idea of you

Of people and places and things but oh, mostly you

Of some sort of better life out there

Of greener grass and sweeter smiles.

Maybe if we close our eyes

And wish and hope and dream that things will be all right (ha! A-okay!)

Then hey, maybe they will be.

And maybe the sky won’t seem so dark, and my heart won’t feel so damn h e a v y,

Because when the sun rises, our sighs fall,

and tears of joy trickle down my chin, making their own way down to you and

your caresses, so strong yet so gentle all at once.

Oh, and you fail to see the things about myself that I personally like the least, and

oh, you make me feel like the girl I wish I could see when I look at my damn self in the mirror.

You make me feel like I could never fail, at anything, ever, at all.

Because when our foreheads are pressed together, and I taste the salt on your tongue, I fall in love with the way leftover pizza lingers on your tastebuds, the feeling of chills on spines, and electric shocks on fingertips.

You make me feel like I’m already the person I could only dream about becoming one day.

The way you look at me, oh, you belong somewhere else, like in my bed or on my table, and I take a swig from the bottle when I finally come to the conclusion that any one of these days, you could just walk right on out of here, with that intoxicating swagger like you always have and that little smirk that always taunts me, and you could find something new that you like better.

Like hacky-sacks, or homemade Kettle Corn.

But oh – you make me feel so damn raw, and I mean that in the best way possible,

Like I’m still a little child with skinned knees – with you I might be bruised from before, from the past, but I’m still secure and safe with you now, and

When your fingers slip their way into my own, the way your little smirk slips onto your face, I smile, too, because

I know you like me way better than Kettle Corn.

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