Beauty to Ash
By MACKENZIE SMITH
The sky was painted blue a long time ago
And the night sky glows with small a glimmer
In the day the sun gives off a warm glow
The oceans and lakes sometimes will shimmer
A bird perches on the branch of a tree
it looks at the big wonders of the world,
thinks how lucky he is to see such beauty
The butterflies laughed as they looped and swirled
As they so did they wind carried them along
A young, small fox went pouncing through a field
while the wind and the river sing a song
And the broken tree is finally healed
this world was created to be turned to ash.
By LYDIA FERNANDES
Do you remember?
Tiny hands, lineless
Big eyes, blind.
Hope hatchling incubated with
Tremulous heart beating
Caging bones flinch
Smears of red under love
Windows turned inward
Kaleidoscopes of blue
Down weighted thick membrane
a leech. a whale.
Cyclical, lingering, clinging
A layer of skin
that won’t say goodbye
Branding that never
By IMANI CHILCOTE-JOOF
Wintertime, cold and dreary
Everything is still and quiet
Everyone around is weary
For someone found in the morning,
That someone being washed ashore
All this sadness, with no warning,
Many hearts, bleak and sore
For many people cried and dread
The chilling fact has come so soon
That that someone they saw was dead
That awful sight that afternoon
Seeing that someone there
Is something none of them could bear.
Friday, January 20, 2017, 11:41 a.m.
By HEATHER BROWN
I woke up today
to a realization.
I am patriotic.
Not the patriotism of
monster trucks and colossal
flags snapping behind smoke-
belching stacks and the chants of
USA! USA! Might
Why would patriotism belong to
the daughter of a single
mother, striving to wrench
a future out of
AFDC and food stamps
by bootstraps of my own making, but I
woke up and realized
I have a difficult patriotism.
An Emma Lazarus patriotism, requiring
a lamp, a little light of mine.
Let it shine.
Let it shine. My patriotism asks not
why others cannot make it,
and asks instead
why did I?
My patriotism is the promise
that an imperfect union can be
shaped by an imperfect woman
who wants others to have
the same chance she did, or even more.
A tempest-tossed patriotism, resisting
the siren song of alternative facts,
working into reality the promise
of our national mythology.
I woke up today
to a difficult patriotism and
a realization. I am not the first.
I am not alone.
Ode to Spring
By ELIZABETH SCHICHE
Oh how we have waited for thee’s beauty
We have waited for thee to come again
From the cold of nights that made me moody
We have waited for thee to come regain
The earth from the glistening of the snow
Oh how we have missed the colorful world
We waited for the long days to grow
The way you have made the days spin and twirl
Thee have brought the trees back to life once more
To see the blossom of flowers grow forth
To seeing the birds come back with a roar
Oh how they have missed the sun and the warmth
We have waited for thee to come around
Oh how we have missed the soggy ground.
By GABRIELLA LOUISE DOYON
My heart dropped my stomach and my hands went shaky.
My parents were fighting again, I was frozen.
I knew what I had to do, I had to go to the woods.
I grabbed my woods backpack, it had everything I would need,
If I was going to be out there for a while.
And I hopped out of the window from my bedroom.
I started sprinting to my wood shelter house I had built out of old plywood.
I opened it up and looked to see how much food I had left from the last time I was here.
I had a can of soup, some crackers and some hot dogs, that was enough for three days.
The sun was going down and I pulled my sleeping bag out and went to bed.
Stomp stomp I figured it was a bear or deer that was just walking by that morning.
I peeked out the window, it turned out to be a game warden.
I was scared I hid down by my sleeping bag
He didn’t see me, he just walked by me.
I had a rational fear of game wardens.
My dad has gotten in trouble with them before.
Just then my can of soup fell on a rock with a loud bang.
He turned around and started walking toward me.
He knocked at the door and said “hello?”.
I turned around and peeped “hi.”
He asked where my parents were.
I said that they were yelling at each other.
He said to hop in his truck so I did.
He made a strange call. I only heard the words kid and station.
Then he took me to the game warden station.
Then some guy named Chris took me to an orphanage.
He told me that I wasn’t in a safe home and I will be put in foster care.
He also told me what he was and about his job and I knew that this is what I wanted to be.
I was so miserable in my foster home.
Then my foster parents took me to the orphanage.
I was told I was going to be adopted, I asked who it was.
Then Chris walked in and I started to cry. I was so happy.
He introduced me to his family and the other game wardens he worked with.
Now today two years later I'm happy and free and I go to the woods for joy not pain.
Pregnancy After Loss isn't Easy
By ELIZABETH BEAUDETTE
It’s seeing the two pink lines and getting
Scared, not excited.
It’s the telling people and then getting Scared to
have to tell them you lost it.
It’s calling the doctors to set up appointment and
then getting Scared you won’t make it.
It’s getting to the appointment and getting Scared they’re
Going to tell you baby isn’t there.
It’s waiting for the HCG results to come back.
It’s the having to go back to get them retested and to
be Scared that they decreased
It’s waiting for the ultrasound to be Scared to
not make it.
It’s the having to go to the bathroom and checking to
make sure there’s no Blood.
It’s every little Cramp or Pain thinking it’s not Good.
By SKYLAR A. THURLOW
The mirror with the black cloth Covering every inch
They say it holds the monster in all of us
The ground is shaking
The black cloth has fallen
My heart is Quaking
I close my eyes thinking I will be free
I hear the cry of someone
I slowly open my eyes
And then I see
The legend that is told
The sharp teeth
Those eyes that haunt many
Was in me all along.
The Changes of Life, A Sonnet
By BLAINE STUART
When the humans were shooting and chopping
They were making their prize. Farming, building
they were having a fun time planting seeds.
Trapping and clapping while forming a line.
Burning and learning about fire’s ash.
Making a crime,, Selling and buying death.
Swimming and flying, swimming and flying,
crying and trying to build a new life.
Fishing and cooking to keep all alive,
but at the end the sun bursts into flame.
Humans are trying, crying, and dying.
By ELEANOR HODGKIN
Hung on that cross,
where his blood was shed
Crown of thorns,
pressed upon his head
As he took his last breath,
nails driven in his hands.
What he gave upon his death,
When he was just a perfect man
Ask him in your heart,
In which he will cleanse,
Free from sin, right from the start.
A friend you can depend
A lifelong friend you inherit,
As nothing can set you are apart
A friend worth more than a karat
What more could you want?
Eternity means, there is no end
Cleansed and free from all our sins.
We are forgiven, and our hearts will mend
As it was written, the gift was given
The days he suffered in pain.
Eternal life is what he gave.
Died buried and rose again,
there was even an empty tomb
The price he had to pay
is beyond our notion.
That gift he gave that day,
was the gift of
By LEIA ANTOINETTE PASQUARELLI
and bruised heels.
The truckers are safely in their seats
high above me.
Their trucks speed by
nothing separates us.
No sidewalks to seek safety on.
eclipse the light.
Sending me near-death experiences -
- but only in my mind.
I am safe?
The fear is almost primal.
Every time a car flies by,
a little close for my liking,
“This is it.
Is this it?”
Dewdrops seeping through my sneakers
soaking my feet.
My dollar store ankle socks
Now they are light brown.
A cold wind whips against my face.
The winter will be rough.
I hate this walk.
I hate it.
I hate it.
I hate it.
but by the Gods and Goddesses
And all things divine and natural
I am reminded of why I moved here in the first place.
I see the world in the hours before all others wake,
as it was made to be.
The sky begins to burn with the embers of the sun
As my body burns too
from my travels.
following me through my day.
It’s all so glorious,
Nature is my saving grace.
And, before I know it,
The beauty escapes again
as I sprint
Not a crosswalk within sight.
I cross and I enter
I’ll do it again tomorrow.
Who I Share Things With
By DOROTHY RICHARD
I am a good friend. I am an animal lover.
I love going for a boat ride on Wilson Lake in the summer at my girlfriend’s camp.
I love writing my jokes for my friend, Mike.
He puts my jokes in a book and shows them to everybody at school. Dogs love me so very much.
I love to read all books at the library. When I can go to the library, that is.
The virus caused a lot of trouble. A lot of people died.
I share things with all my friends; friends that I love.
I love reading books with Becky.
I like to share things with Barbara
and with my helper, Sarah,
that comes to help me and plays Flinch and checkers with me.
With all my good friends.