Friday, September 8, 2017

The Cherry Tree

By Jade Rickman

There is a cherry tree by the creek,
Where my friend and I played hide and seek.
We splashed around and played all day,
Until our parents came to carry us away.

In winter we skated on frozen water,
And fall was when we looked for otters.
In spring we watched the cherry tree bloom,
And we wished that summer would come soon.

As time went on and we grew older,
Our relationship grew into something much bolder.
We sat under the tree our feelings undiscovered,
Yet somehow we became lovers.

There is a cherry tree by the creek,
Where my daughter and I play hide and seek.
We splash around and play all day,

Until her father comes to carry us away.

Thursday, September 7, 2017


Illustration by Emnet Abraham

By Mikayla Kennett
It makes its way through a broken town
The wind it carries makes a soft, haunting sound
No hope remaining, for they have drowned 
Cracked roads to buildings yet to fall down

The sea glistens with its many lights  
The birds on ships ready to take flight 
As they'll soon arrive to this broken town
no other life to be seen around 

Poles and wires lay out and about
The waters before it surely brought doubt
As the ocean restrains from its next bout 
The town lays broken, inside and out

Before the storm, the town was alive 
And in its streets many people thrived  
The warning too late and the town on its bay
The waves that had cast their town away 

Panic arose from this catastrophe 
No one ready to be carried at sea
The town now empty and on its own
The souls that linger seem all alone 

Few survived but the town is now gone 
They watch their home at the break of dawn 
On a boat in the distance, they sing soft songs 
Away they go for a journey so long

Friday, February 17, 2017

Step by step

Step by step.
Hand by hand.
Brothers and sisters we stand.
Together we will band
for a new world.
We will rejoice with our fellow man.
Change life for the better.
Equality, no matter the face.
Living in a better time and place.
Knowing the people who fought for
these rights had their hearts in the right place.
Now their work is encased
in our society.
Different everything,
the variety.

-Samalia Nivens

Friday, February 3, 2017

I Believe in Yellow

I believe in the color yellow. Growing up, I lived in a constant power struggle with anxiety. I would start my day overjoyed at the prospect of going to school and spending time with my classmates. But when I was there, I felt awkward and out of place. I was petrified when the teacher called on me, unable to vocalize a single word, much less an answer to a question. I thought that every time another kid laughed, it was directed towards me. Sometimes I became so nervous, that I would run out of the classroom without any warning and hide in a bathroom stall. The aspects of everyday life seemed impossible for me to take part in.
In my mind, I was this bubbly, curious, and funny person that yearned to interact with the world, yet on the outside I was just the sad little girl with the blue personality. My emotions became a tidal wave, knocking me down and trying to wash me away. For a while, I let them. I thought that as long as I kept everything bottled up inside me, someday all the pain would just magically disappear. As the years progressed, I opened up more and made a few friends, foolishly believing that my anxiousness was gone. In reality, after spending five years in school with the same people, I finally felt a little more comfortable. By the time I started middle school, I had closed back up, reading and hiding instead of getting to know new people.
It wasn’t until seventh grade that I realized that something about the way I was living needed to change. I had already figured out I had anxiety, but I hadn’t done much about it. It was the middle of December, and I had just run out of class, only to be reduced to tears on the cracked tile floor of the girls’ restroom. In my state of obvious distress, I thought of my mother. I remembered her singing ‘You Are My Sunshine’ while she scrubbed away at grimy dishes in the kitchen. How whenever we indulged in a bag of M&M’s, even though I considered them all alike, she would boastfully claim that the yellow ones were certainly the best. And if you asked her what her favorite color was, she would always say yellow because it was the happiest. Thinking of her, of the woman I adore and struggle to be more like, I made a decision. I chose yellow.

Yellow to me isn’t just a color. It is making friends and pushing myself out of my comfort  zone. It is smiling and laughing and being open about my flaws. Most of all, yellow is the security in knowing that even if I feel inconsolably miserable, I still have a family that loves me, friends who care about me, and a whole world for me to explore. I understand now that my anxiety will never disappear like the white rabbit in the magician’s hat. I also know that I will have days where I am reduced to a weeping mess because I am convinced that I made one conversation slightly awkward. I’m never going to be perfect, but for every panic attack or horrible day, there is a  tiny bit of yellow...waiting to be discovered.
-Grace Brumbaugh

Friday, January 27, 2017

Entrapment of a Flame

Entrapment of a Flame

Night Three
Of my captivity.
From the chambers of the glass
My light bleeds out,
Pleading with the earth:
The dank, damp sponge
On which she treads
With hesitant repose.
She parts the reeds.
Twitching and dry
They extend the expanses of
Their brittle limbs,
Seeking to free me.
But the reeds
Tease the aloof surface
Of the glass. As I dance within
She inhales
The quiet frenzy of a forest.
I feel---weak.
She exhales
And I glance about,
This flirt with freedom
replenishing my will.
In a glade,
She falls upon
The earth. Grasses
Prick her chocolate skin
Scarred and smooth.
Staring blatantly
At night’s velvet mask
Eyes glazed with inky tears
Reluctant to drop,
Battling gravity
Then wet acceptance,
Tears turning iridescent
As they meld with Earth.
A lost child giving back to her mother
All that was given
To her.
As for me,
I yearn to break free!
To ignite!
I can nearly feel
This cage melting away,
The girl, this wood on fire:
A symphony of flames and sparks
Smoke overwhelming the senses!
I swear I’d mock the heavens.
Yet here she rests.
Distilled passions lurk
In the frigid pipes of her veins.
What entrapment has she known?

-Mariana Kornreich

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Fighting stereotypes

I've broken numerous stereotypes of people with a disability.
I've overcome many hurdles in my life.
I've proved others wrong about people confined to a wheelchair.
I am far from another statistic or stereotype of disabled people.
I've accomplished many goals.
I've been on a long journey.
I've come a great distance,
But I still have lengthy journey ahead of me.
I've opened a multitude of doors;
although I know there are multiple paths I can take,
and multiple doors I can open,
stereotypes will always follow.
One day, I will prove more stereotypes wrong,
And I will open the door that leads me to the perfect road.
I will leave those stereotypes in dust.

-Tori Rittelmeyer

Thursday, December 1, 2016

No words

Eyes that gleam with the azure depth of sapphire;

Adorned with the burning fervor of a thousand constellations.

A visage absolutely beaming with radiance.

You bring on complete transcendence of ecstasy.

Denoted a goddess by some.

But I just haven't got the words for you.

-Harrigan O'Connor