A boy walks over an ancient stone terrace, over fertile brown earth. Olive trees sit in their magnificent, twisted shapes, their limbs resting in the cool mountain breeze. In the dusky light, a house. Short and low to the ground, it’s walls made of strong, white stone. No light shines from behind it’s windows. The garden overrun by the grasses of these hills. The boys stands before its porch, remembering. A cat mews nearby, waiting for its patron to return. No food has come from the door for weeks. A rustle in the grasses below makes the boy turn, meeting two brilliant eyes reflecting the sunset. A dark red fur defines the creature. It’s pointed snout and sharp ears, instantly alert. The boy looks into her eyes. The fox completely still in the twilight, only her tail twitching. A moment beyond time. As darkness falls, the fox breaks away—silent leap into the night. The boy stops, thinking as the sounds of evening commences. He starts back over the terraces, through olive groves—into lights of home.
It was the end of a cold winter.
The unpleasant sound of gunfire
echos for miles. As I pour gasoline
in the car, I feel pitiful.
The flashbacks came like wildfire
of my brother beating, brutal
scars on his chest and face, brutal
pool of blood. Wildfire
is what it feels like when you lose
She walked down the sidewalk. The leaves fell in front of a small school, the late fall weather causing most of the trees to be bare, but the ground to be full of brightly colored leaves. The one time of year when death is beautiful. Few cars were parked outside and the playground was empty, after the recesses of kids, after the busy school day, the echoes of children laughing could be heard among the stray mulch and orange peels left from the lunches before. The busy streets around the building seemed to isolate it and make it its own island, an island full of memories. The wind blew the leaves over the sidewalk in front of the door. The door that was swarmed with people each morning arriving from the buses. She walked up to the old school and glanced at it, seeing the buzz of kids leaving, jumpy from the idea of getting back to their homes. She saw the middle schoolers gossiping about her, talking about their dislike for her. But when she blinked she saw the empty quiet school, different from the one she had known many years ago. She turned up the volume of her earbuds trying to block out the old memories but instead the music was drowned out by old memories, ones she had thought she had forgotten by now. They all rushed back in this moment, filling her mind with past troubles and ancient worries.
It’s the spread of the blight.
For miles, it can be heard.
It approaches throughout the night.
As it comes towards the town to fright,
The people can feel it from the birds.
It’s the spread of the blight.
The spread makes it feel tight.
It makes the sky seem like it’s blurred.
It’s the spread of the blight.
That was the beginning of the plight
With the town whirring—
It’s the spread of the blight
While some people wanted to fight,
Their thoughts were unheard.
It’s the spread of the blight,
Where there’s no chance of flight.
My Grandma flipped through the channels with the remote, taking a sip from her diet coke. I sat on the floor, playing with whatever toy she had bought me from walmart earlier. I looked at the clock: it was past ten, my mom would be pissed if she knew I was up. I focused in on the show playing. It was one of those “real life” ghost story shows. After listening in, I determined the over-emotional woman on the screen was wailing about a plant falling over she claimed it had been a ghost in her shop, when realistically, a pot put too close to the edge of a shelf. I continued watching; the longer I listened, the scarier the stories seemed. “What if there;s a ghost in my house?” I thought. It checked out; my house my house was old and who knows who could’ve died in there. I started to think. My floors creaked in the middle of the night. Sometimes I thought I saw the closet open by itself at night. I began to panic. “I can’t go back in there,” thinking of my room, the place where I heard strange things at night. The darkness now felt incredibly menacing; the only light came from the TV and my only savior would be my sleeping grandmother. My grandpa was in the garage. I knew he was a collector of guns and swords, but would these work on a ghost? I wasn’t sure. Being only eight and thinking of ghosts as a threat for the first time in my life, I hadn’t had time to do the proper research to defend myself.
Wii, game system for the Hannan family, died sometime in like 2012 or something. Wii passed at the Hannan household when attempted to turn on. It probably broke because a game was left in it for too long, but that’s besides the point.
Wii was a loving game system that had really good games. Wii’s games included: Lego Star Wars, Wii Sports, Wii Sports Resort, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, Littlest Pet Shop, some carnival game, and many more. Ice Age had a really cool vulture fighting scene and it was a lot of fun. Wii will be greatly missed.
Everyone who met this amazing Wii system knew that it was a friend, and an amazing worker. It was voted employee of every month, and was the best and only worker at its job. Wii was never married, and it didn’t have children. The children it made happy were like its kids to it.
We would like to let Wii rest in peace. We hope and pray that Wii is resting right at this moment. Rest in peace Wii, thank you for being an amazing game system.
We met many years ago through another friend.
She took to me quickly, adapting me as a sidekick.
We talk during day at school and at lunch
but as soon as day ends, I’m not longer a sidekick
I become no one because she doesn’t care.
I am only a pawn. Only a sidekick.
I cannot escape because she is everywhere.
Everywhere around me, forcing me to be her sidekick.
It’s her and it’s me, never just me
because i’m an attachment, only a sidekick
Only a copy of the original seen as less.
I didn’t have any of my own friends, why would I? A sidekick.
I was only a side-kick, but I think I’m recovering.
Now when you see me I hope you see, Nora, not some sidekick.
Lights fade on the stage. Looks like the shows over.
Millions of thoughts run through his head.
He awaits a response from the crowd.
His arm shackles are yanked back, pulling him from
his stage of life. Never to hear if the audience
enjoyed the show.
The only face he’ll ever see are those of the demons
that chain what emotions he had left.
They expect him to put on a show then leave.
The ring master is forced to wear his broken smile.
However all they see is his
smiling happy face.
A show-master ready to perform for those who are saddened.
When there are
tight-ropes of happiness, losing our balance could cause
our never-ending sadness.
We fit through our hoops of emotion. People
want him to conform to their sadness,
it’ll be harder and harder as the hoop gets smaller,
nothing will get easy.
He asks you to do one thing:
smile. He’s lost his own, all you see is a broken mask.
Smile for his final show.
Barbed wire, the perfect name
for how and what it feels like.
Day in, day out. It always comes
back to you, anger, but I will never
look back, or look at all.
It will destroy me.
Waves crash against rocks, not hard,
not soft, but it’s coming.
I’ll have to build myself up for it.
Maybe I’ll survive. But in truth,
I know it will tear me down, tear
me apart. It’ll be a while
before I’m presentable.
Ancestry from Spain and Mexico,
strong and passionate, hard and hard
complicated work, from the dawn
of day and dusk of night, pure
dedication of work pays off.
The purity of the sunset golden love
he offers to his family. The adventurous,
unbelievable stories: mythical creatures,
incredible treasure; you shall learn it all
from mi grandad—Sotero Viera.
- BUM WITHOUT A MUM
- WARRIOR OF THE GLASS
- THROUGH THE AGES
- SPIDER HEAD
- SO WHY BOTHER?
- WHAT I HATE
- ACCIDENTAL ART
- SOMETHING LIKE HAIKU
- THE TURTLE
- THE HOUSE NEAR OLIVE GROVES
- ANCIENT WORRIES
- SPREADING BLIGHT
- A GHOST STORY
- R.I.P. WII
- SIDEKICK GHAZAL
- BARBED WIRE
- MI GRANDAD
- WISE WORDS FROM POPS
- THIS LIFE DON’T SUIT YOU
- TWO HAIKUS
- HALLUCINATIONS OF VASES
- SHY GIRL GHAZAL
- SHARE WITH THE CLASS
- IT’S FINE
- SKIP DINNER
- KHAKI SAM AND SUZY Q
- IDIOT BOX
- ALL THE FEELS
- A BEE
- MAD AS A HATTER
- BILLIE JOE ARMSTRONG
- KNOCK, KNOCK
- THE SADNESS OF A BROKEN MAN
- BOLTON STREET
- WALKING STICK
- THE CURATOR