an open space for youth writing & mental health discussion
an open space for youth writing & mental health discussion
I’m sorry that the feeling is mutual
That we may die alone together
Two halves of different wholes
The lost puzzle piece and eternally lonesome sock.
Maybe I can give you a hand the right size to hold
If nothing else.
Don’t wait for death to come to you or it will advance on you quicker than you could dream of; make your amends before its too late; rekindle friendships and fallen relationships; this is how to not waste time; don’t waste time; this is how to prepare your house; this is how to prepare your family; don’t forget to turn off the stove before you go; look presentable; this is how to straighten your hair - your mother will want your hair to look nice; this is how to iron a dress; don’t waste time; make sure you have planned out your will; believe in Heaven so that you won’t end up in Hell; forgive others for their wrongdoings before it’s too late; this is how you say goodbye;
Panic ambushes me like a rogue wave:
Its roar racing toward sparkling shore
And rising to tower over seashell beach.
Panic hits me on the shimmering sand;
It fells cherished sandcastles within,
Transforms dreams into twisted turmoil.
My black fallen angels stumbled towards the captivating golden liquid that you had poured.
The night turned into months as I followed your deceiving voice.
And you knew that too, which buttons to press for me to unravel for you.
Eden was tantalizingly in view, begging me to claw through my Asphodel fields.
Who said we both couldn't be racing to see how far your con of forever would escort our souls?
With shaky breaths and heavy heartbeats,
I find myself in an abyss and
Frantic, forage for something familiar
To ease my rising fretfulness.
I strain to move my anchored legs
Yet cannot escape this chasm.
Caught, I cry out with scorched throat
But hear only a pathetic echo.
north, we stare, heading for the top
suddenly, we plummet, into the depths of our sea
and it feels, nice actually
to be able to let go, and fly, however short the ride
so we fall
It is a stubbornness, this thing that sits on my chest and pulls open my eyes to see that there are
still things here for us.
There is a home to be built.
There is bread to be baked,
to be broken with friends,
to eat while still warm.
I rinse my cold hands
on the gentle shores
of Punta Fuego,
feeling a rush
of last summer
and ebbing away.
the clack of the tracks like fingers picking at guitar strings.
“i’ve been everywhere,”
is a promise and a vow,
for every star and trail.
There’s a framed drawing on my desk
which my sister drew in the fall
of 2017, in our old Samik apartment. In the drawing,
my brother and I look at the sky,
our muddy hands on the sand castle
we were building.
We were nineteen throwing pennies into pools thinking that youth could deliver wishes to reality
Dinner dates seemed like a classic, but two strangers can hardly pass it
Park benches and plastic cups filled with ice cream is where we landed in the floral air
And I knew the date was over, felt the static taking over
Till my waning eyes were captured by yours, and lassitude left my shoulders
Because the spark in your eye told me that this night would end in magic
I wear ripped jeans,
cuffed at the ankles,
that sway with each step
along these glossed
and at that moment,
the beasts of His making
clawed and stumbled out of the shadows
pools of darkness bleeding into every inch of their eyes
mouths upturned in a gruesome snarl, drops of saliva falling staggeredly from cracked lips
tails dragging limply behind them, leaving trenches in the dampened soil
sharpened talons bit into the earth,
like they had a personal vendetta against mother nature
or the earth upon which they stood
the leather shoes are sprawled outside
beside the poplars, cypresses,
shaded in the darkness
with trees looming over
like the grieving widows
Every nook glimpsed into
now brings unfiltered glee.
Every day, the walls inch
closer, the smell of nothing
carries all with it. Summer
storms fold like raw wool.
When her ears are roughened
like processed flax, she goes
away on her annual trip - the
one no one speaks of. Along
the cobblestone paths driving
from home are small cavities,
Along Lee Chapel Road
one still afternoon,
rests a cemetery.
St. Andrews Chapel
overlooks the plane
idling at the top of a grassy knoll.
This winter, snow drifts from the sky
Soon, all the cherry blossom trees that bloom
in the spring will winnow away. The bushes
filled with small fireflies will dim with the night
and the silly children who used to catch them
will turn into ghosts.
after Airea D. Matthews
in the garden
or the ice rink, we had praised art and
was it phase changes or pressure
Salmon rays splash onto a canvas of vapor:
altostratus streaks roll along the horizon.
They ride the foaming crests of the aether--
but under my camera lens, they still.
The clouds blush for the LED screen.
It’s all a game now.
If you wake early in the morning,
shut the door & measure the minutes before
the coffee maker beeps. Count the beats
between crashes, record the decibels of each
crack. Divide by five & forget
about miles; the eye is just inches away.
after Langston Hughes
I, too, am the future.
a young adult,
a blossoming person,
a teenager that’s taking in
the world day by day,
gaining experience and living,
learning the ways of life
Back here again.
Another day has gone by and
I didn’t even realize.
The water relaxes me,
The steam like a blanket of comfort.
Yet soon enough the panic sets in
And I’m on the shower floor,
Silently sobbing and gasping for air,
Until I can regain myself
And contain it once again.
After C.S. Lewis
Love anything and watch
the bifurcated sword cleave its maker.
Bury the child in algae. Ethanol shrinks from linoleum squares but the glass remains.
Give away a covering of cotton. Fine teeth comb the ivy as blinds for a blank slate
Ants chew on the spinal cord and no grass grows in a velvet cage. Hear
the reeds petrify.
I greet friends with a smile, laugh
To convince them I’m okay;
But then when alone, I plunge
Into my usual dark hole
Where images swarm, ridicule me
Powerless to fight back.
* = Editors' Choice work
Unless otherwise noted, all pictures used are open-source images in the public domain.