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Tiger PAWS

St. Philip’s College Volume 6, Issue 1 Spring 2017


Tiger P.A.W.S. Personal Academic Writing Space St. Philip’s College Volume 6, Issue 1 Spring 2017

Cover Art: Noboborso Kid's Costume by Ali Al Razy Siddiqui Photograph

Tiger P.A.W.S. is a student publication composed of students’ original works consisting of prose, poetry, art, and photography. The student editorial staff reviews dozens of submissions each fall and spring semester and organizes the journal. The selected works may not reflect the attitudes or opinions of St. Philip’s College or the Department of Communications and Learning. 3

Acknowledgments The Tiger PAWS staff wishes to thank the following: Randall Dawson— Dean of Arts and Sciences Dr. Erick Akins—Title III Director, Title III Grant Management Ty Williams—Chair, Communications & Learning San Juan San Miguel—Academic Program Coordinator, Rose R. Thomas Writing Center, Prose Judge Marisa Ramirez—Faculty, Communications & Learning, Poetry Judge Mitchell Miranda—Art & Photography Judge Dr. Audrey Mosley—Faculty, Communications & Learning Velia De La Rosa—Administrative Services Specialist, Communications & Learning The UPS Store St. Philip’s College Public Relations Department Department of Communications & Learning for funding the publication

©2017 St. Philip’s College

Selections for Tiger PAWS are printed with the permission of the authors and artists cited. Copyright reverts to authors and artists immediately after publication. 4

Editorial Staff Student Staff:

Faculty Staff:

Ali Al Razy Siddiqui

Nicki Apostolow

Josie Dawn Carrillo

Stephanie Gibson

Angelia Jacobs

Jamie Miranda

Kara Lazzaretti

Aurelia Rocha

Lourdes Nakamoto

San Juan San Miguel

Amanda Olveda Saren Perales Reshonna Rifenbury

Submissions for the next edition of Tiger PAWS in Fall 2018 will be accepted through October 6, 2017. Enrolled SPC students are encouraged to submit essays, short stories, poetry, artwork, and/or photography. 5

Table of Contents Noboborso Kid's Costume —Ali Al Razy Siddiqui..………...……..


Little Red—Lauren Estrada………………………………………………………


“Bookshelf” —Sarah Paulding……………...…..……………………….…..


Self Portrait: Express Yourself—Reshonna Rifenbury.……………


“A Hero of Gaming: Satoru Iwata”—Jessica Nelle……..……...


Day Thoughts down the Drain—Ronisha Saunders…….…………...


“Firefighters”—David Beedle …………………...………..………………….


Embrace the Challenge of the Soul—Josie Dawn Carrillo.…........


“The Third Eye”—Helen Hanna..……….…………………………….…...


“Touch”—Kara Lazzaretti………………………...….………..….….……….


Muskox—Ashley Wonsang……………..………...……..………………..…..


Jade—Angelia Jacobs……………………………......……………….…...……….


Pearl—Angelia Jacobs…………………...………..……...………..……………..


Heartbeat of My Home—Michael Fernandez.………………………….


“Good Morning”—Sharon Bigler…………………..………………...……


Tropical Girl—Lauren Estrada ……..……………..………………….………


“When I Was a Girl”—Amanda Olveda………….……………..…...


Exquisite Flower Child—Lakia Hunt….……..…………………..…..…….


“A Heroic Politician”—David Nelle……………..…………………..…..


Serenity in the Arms of Nature—Josie Dawn Carrillo ...….......…


Girl in Bangla Noboborso Festival—Ali Al Razy Siddiqui.........


Bangla Nonoborso Festival with Chorkey—Ali Al Razy Siddiqui


Peace of Mind—Reshonna Rifenbury.……………………...……………..


“The Dark, Cold Basement”—Bryan Lam….……….……….……….…….


“My Son’s Last Breath”—Daniel Becerra…....…………….………...


Accidental Beauty—Saren Perales.…………...…………………….………..


“Mirrors”—Bryan Lam……………………………………………………………..



Table of Contents The Walk—Marley Correia..……….…………………………………………....


“My Hero”—Saleh AlGhamdi…………...…………...……………………..


Wondering What the World Is Like—Samantha Camacho….……


Bangla New Year’s Eve Festival—Ali Al Razy Siddiqui ………….


“Oh, Sweet Hummingbird”—Bryan lam…..………………….……...


What’s Left Behind—Reshonna Rifenbury……….....……………….…


“Trauma 1”—Ashley Wonsang……………………...……….………….....


Shell—Zihan Zhao……………………………….………………………………......


“Alma Mater”—Jesse Reyna……………………….……………..……..…...


Beautifully Played —Ronisha Saunders...…………..……………….…..


“An ‘Ordinary’ Dream”—LaTyjua Haslip………...….……………….


Watercolors—Erik M. Tavarez……………………....………….…...……….


“Hunter”—Sarah Fox……………………….....………...………..……………..


Mother—Lauren Estrada…………………….…………………………………...


The Fine Line between Freedom and Captivity—Giselle M. Vasquez 54 “In Dog Years”—Sonia Carmona………….………….…………….………


“G”—Giselle Marie Vasquez………………………….….……………..…...


Miss You—Lauren Estrada .……………….……..…………………..…..…….


Bangla Noboborso Face-Toon—Ali Al Razy Siddiqui………...…..


“Butterfly Love”—Trinidad Covarrubias .………………………..…


“Fly”—Margarita Guajardo .……………………………………...………....


Laugh with the Eyes—Marley Correia……………………………………….


“Hunger”—Kara Lazzaretti…………………………………………………….


Panda Action—Ronisha Saunders……………………………………………


Tambourin Falls—Saren Perales………………………………………………..


“The Glades”—Kara Lazzaretti………………………………………………


Our Judges……………………………………………………………...……………....…



Little Red By Lauren Estrada

Copic Markers 8

“Bookshelf” By Sarah Paulding

Case of golden memories Smiles at me as I stare. Brings to me such calm and ease— Ever be contented there. James and Helen Herriot— Cows and horses, lack of sleep; Saves her in his chariot— David will his Ruth now keep; Rochester and Miss Jane Eyre— Orphan, preacher, timely death; Marriage for one not quite fair— Darcy and Elizabeth. Taste the salts of joy and pain; From the dusty shelves they pour. Like a love one can’t contain, Bookshelves are an open door.


Self Portrait: Express Yourself By Reshonna Rifenbury

Copic Markers 10

“A Hero of Gaming: Satoru Iwata” By Jessica Nelle What is a hero? For several people, a hero is someone who saves someone else from a dangerous situation. For others, the word “hero” means someone who inspires them to be their best. My personal hero is the game developer and corporate president of Nintendo, Satoru Iwata. I remember when I first saw him on a Nintendo Direct. Nintendo had already brought several games into my life, but he sold me on the company. I could tell that he had dedicated his whole adult life to games, many of which kept me in the video game culture. Now I will tell you about why he inspires me. One of the many reasons that he is my hero is because he made many games that brought the world joy. He started his professional career at HAL laboratory, despite his family’s disapproval. Over his time there, he worked on many well-designed games, such as Balloon Fight, NES Open Golf, and the cult classic, Earthbound. When Nintendo hired him, he had a hand in making Pokémon: Gold and Silver, Animal Crossing, and Super Smash Bros. When he died, due to complications with a tumor, thousands attended his funeral service, despite the weather from Typhoon Nangka. This shows just how many lives he touched through his games. The second reason that he is my hero is because he dedicated his life to his passion. He started developing games in his high school years on his calculator. He was admitted to college at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, where he became one of the best programmers of his class. After college, HAL laboratory hired him, where he started making games for the Nintendo Entertainment System. When he joined Nintendo, he quickly rose through the ranks. He was appointed president after only two years of working for the company! This was a symbol of how much of himself that he put into the gaming industry. My final reason for calling him my hero is that he made me feel a connection with Nintendo. While the first system that I played was a Play Station 2, I never felt any loyalty to Sony. The next year, 11

I started playing my family’s new Wii. I liked the games, but I still didn’t feel connected to Nintendo. Then, I watched my first Nintendo Direct. When I saw Iwata appear on screen talking about the new games, I felt a need to play them. This cemented me in the gaming culture. Later, I started branching out into other game developers, such as Sega and Capcom, but Nintendo always held me firmly in gaming. Even when I grew older and saw the games that most people deemed “normal,” I knew that Iwata’s Nintendo would always have a place for me in the store. I credit Iwata for cementing me in gaming and inspiring me to become a game developer. As I move into college, I look to Iwata’s example for how to be a game developer. The games that I grew up with, several of which he started, are great for me to fall back upon if I have a bad day. Because of him, I want to go into the field that he gave me an interest in. Even if I don’t work for Nintendo, I want to focus on making quality games for people to enjoy, just like the games that Iwata introduced to me on the Nintendo Direct. However, even when I become a game developer, I will keep my favorite quote from him in mind. “On my business card, I am a corporate president. In my mind, I am a game developer. But in my heart, I am a gamer” (Satoru Iwata, Game Developer’s Conference, 2005).


Day Thoughts down the Drain By Ronisha Saunders

Photograph 13

“Firefighters” By David Beedle Like a hive of busy bees they work both night and day. Protecting houses, cars, and trees, keeping danger at bay. They must do all their work with pride, bold, with tact and accuracy. They move with purpose in their stride, knowing they are under scrutiny. There is no rhyme or reason to what their job entails. The flames could leap in any season as Murphy's law prevails. “Who are these people?” one might ask, Are they local or outsiders? We are the elite, with special tasks. They call us firefighters.


Embrace the Challenge of the Soul By Josie Dawn Carrillo

Digital Art 15

“The Third Eye” By Helen Hanna Have you ever had a “third eye”? The mailbox gave me my best one ever! Let me explain. One day my family went over to my grandma’s house. She did not live that far from my house. She also did not drive, so my mom’s brothers, sister, and my cousins would all be at her house. We would eat dinner and hang out together. When we got to Grandma’s house on this particular day, there was a girl’s bicycle in the front yard. I was the only girl cousin and granddaughter, so I knew it had to be mine, especially since it was a pink bicycle with a banana seat and a pink basket hanging on the handle bars. There were pink tassels hanging off the hand grips. I did not hesitate and did not ask whose bike it was. I just got on it and tried to pedal. That is when I found out that it is not easy to ride a bike. For one thing, it was hard to balance on it. I would kick off the sidewalk with one foot and with the other foot on the pedal. My big brother, Jonathan, yelled at me and said, “The bike could belong to someone visiting and not be yours.” That is when my Grandma, Aunt Mary, Dad, Mom, Uncle John, Aunt Terry, and my cousins came out to the front yard. My grandma said, “The bike is Helen’s.” They all kept trying to tell me how to ride the bicycle. I tried and tried but just could not get the balance part down. I rarely got both feet on the pedals at the same time before I would lose my balance and fall. Getting hurt was another issue. I was trying to push off to where I had both my feet on the pedals without falling. The bike would wobble; I would get scared and put my feet down so that I would not fall. I asked, “Can one of you help me, and maybe hold the bike up so that I can pedal?” My Uncle John said, “I will help you. I will run behind you, holding onto the seat so you do not fall.” I was still trying to learn to ride without getting hurt. I rode on the sidewalk with my bike. Uncle John got behind the bike and held onto the seat. He told me to start pedaling. He said, “Do not worry; I am here. I will hold you up, but do not turn back to look at me. Keep your 16

eyes forward so you can steer the bike.” I said, “Okay, but do not let me fall.” I started out at a slow pace, and the bike wobbled a bit. Uncle John encouraged me to pedal faster and assured me he was there. As I pedaled faster, I could hear his footsteps behind me. I was confident he still had a hold of me. I rode a little faster and was steering well. Then, I turned back to see if he was still holding my bike. I turned back to the front and BANG! I hit my head on my grandma’s yellow metal mailbox. Who knew a mailbox could be so hard? Then, everyone asked me if I was okay. I said, “I think so.” It happened so fast, and I did not feel pain immediately. When I went into the house, I felt the pain in the middle of my forehead. My grandma said, “Let’s put some ice on that ‘third eye’ you have on your forehead.” After a few minutes of holding the ice on my head, I got the courage to get up and look at my forehead in the bathroom mirror. I had a huge red bump on the middle of my forehead. I knew what she meant about me having a “third eye” then. The street, as I mentioned, was very busy with cars up and down it. The Via bus drove by really fast right in front of Grandma’s house. I wanted to ride in the street, but they said it was much safer on the sidewalk. I do not think I agree with them anymore. Stupid, mailbox. Why did it have to be in the way? My “third eye” was there for quite a while. At first, it was red and had a large bump. Then, the bump went down, but the spot turned blue then yellow and brown and eventually went away. Learning to ride a bike was a challenging experience. I never gave up. I would fall over and over and get up and try again. It took me almost a year to get the hang of it. I was always afraid another mailbox would jump out at me again. I never gave up, and eventually, I got the pedals going fast enough to keep from wobbling. Then, you could not keep me off my bike. This helped me in other ways also. When something was difficult, like math or punctuation in English, I would think, I can do it; at least, I should not get a ‘third eye’ from this. I have learned to keep trying at whatever is difficult, and eventually, I will conquer it. I still carry this over into all aspects of my life. My joke was – learn to ride a bike, and come out with a third eye. 17

“Touch” By Kara Lazzaretti Please don’t Don’t touch me It’s his embrace I feel His fingertips across my skin Every touch brings the memories Of that bittersweet love of ours Then comes the regrets Don’t reach for me Please don’t Leave me Any touch It doesn’t matter who Touch brings the mistake back to me Of falling in love with danger That’s what he was Leave me He was Cold and callous His embrace was warm though So I stayed by his side bound by my love I ignored the blood on his hands Along with my morals He was I’m free Away from him Until you touch me A hug will never comfort me Just remind of his murderous embrace Please simply let me be Why can’t you see 18

Muskox By Ashley Wonsang

Photograph 19

Jade By Angelia Jacobs

Jade Wrapped with Copper 20

Pearl By Angelia Jacobs

Copper and Freshwater Pearls 21

Heartbeat of My Home By Michael Fernandez

Photograph 22

“Good Morning” By Sharon Bigler “BRLANG!” The alarm goes off, dragging me from my slumber. I was on a beautiful white sand beach; a tropical breeze was blowing my hair back. No time for snoozing today. I swing my legs over the side and roll out of bed. I look at the clock on the nightstand; it reads 4:30, FML! I tiptoe downstairs to not wake anyone else in the house. They will not be up for at least two hours. I start the coffee and turn on the computer, eyeing my bulging backpack with dismay. Why did I sign up to take four classes this semester? I pull out the first book, Sociology, and open to chapter 3. There are a quiz and a discussion due today by 5. Since I put this off for a week, it is the last day to turn them in. I quickly take the quiz and make a 75. Yes, I need to study those notecards I made the other night. I mentally put that on my running to-do list in my head. Algebra next, I slowly plod through the homework questions. I keep getting the variables switched. I need to go see the tutor to figure that out. Statistics is easier but by no means easy. The calculator that cost over $100 does most of the work. English, I read the next story in the lit book and then browse through the next three. They are short stories and easy to read. One I vaguely remember from high school. No time for leisure reading; I start typing my essay. Halfway through, a sleepy tow-haired little boy plops down beside me on the couch. “Momma, I’m hungry; make me some cereal, please.”


Tropical Girl By Lauren Estrada

Copic Markers 24

“When I Was a Girl� By Amanda Olveda When I was a girl, life was complicated. Love was complicated. Love was empty and confused. Love was penetrating and painful. Love was tormenting and mournful. Love was the loss of innocence. How could I truly LOVE after enduring love? I discovered that kind of love was not LOVE at all. LOVE is not complicated. LOVE is not empty. LOVE is not painful. LOVE is not mournful. I no longer endure love. I embrace LOVE.


Exquisite Flower Child By Lakia Hunt

Digital Art 26

“A Heroic Politician” By David Nelle Whom, in a world that is increasingly becoming cynical, can people look up to? Whom can people truly call a hero? Heroes must be beacons of light, shining down on people and inspiring them. I know I can call Supreme Chancellor Sheev Palpatine, a character from Star Wars, one such hero. One of the first things Palpatine comments on is how corrupt the Galactic Senate is, and his position holds throughout the movies. He was claimed to have encouraged quick action rather than long, bureaucratic process, telling a Jedi to kill the Separatist menace Count Dooku, saying, “Do it, Anakin. Do it now.” He eventually is forced to reluctantly remove the Senate from power, as both rebels and Jedi attempted to use it as a method of treason. As chancellor, he was shown to believe in greater education and exercise. He took a Jedi colleague to the opera and spoke with him about an ancient Sith legend so he could help increase his friend's knowledge of ancient religions. Palpatine was also known to value exercise a great deal, as he was known to leap in the air and spin a full nine-hundred and twenty degrees to greet some Jedi guests once. When faced with the treasonous Jedi, we are allowed a glance at the true, noble character of our emperor. After it was keenly ascertained that the Jedi were set on taking control of the Galactic Senate, Palpatine chose to resist. When the Jedi were speaking of circumventing governmental process for their own gain, Palpatine chose to boldly re-affirm his position in guiding the Senate, stating, “I am the Senate,” so that the Jedi would know that the chosen government would not stand for such treason. Even while the leader of the traitorous attack, Jedi Master Mace Windu, is slowly and painfully killing him, our noble chancellor's only thoughts are in saving a friend's loved one. In the final moments of the attack, the chancellor vows to bring free electricity to the populace, boldly stating “unlimited power!” This traumatic act simply strengthened his unbreakable resolve for galactic peace, vowing to 27

bring a “safe and secure society.” After being deeply scarred by the cowardly attack, the nowEmperor Palpatine chose not to us6e public funding to have plastic surgery, but rather decided to use the money for the betterment of the Empire's citizens and bring lawless systems into the stable empire. The ending of the religious Jedi cult as one of the first actions of the new empire was one of the most desperately needed reforms, as evidenced by high-ranking Jedi saying they would control the Galactic Senate to “ease the transition of power.” The Empire was highly dedicated to keeping order and increased their calming presence to keep backwater systems in line. This, unfortunately, became increasingly necessary as the rebel terrorists began a bloody campaign to try to throw the galaxy into chaotic disarray by destroying the Empire. Some of his direct agents were highly encouraged in family matters and advised to visit family on occasion. Palpatine was even believed to have a “bring your son to work day” on a highly secretive moon-sized defensive weapons platform, showing him to be a family man, even in extenuating circumstances. The formation of the First Galactic Empire, as it was officially known, allowed Emperor Palpatine to bring a great many things to a broken galaxy. The empire was able to normalize trade for a great many formerly ignored systems, bringing a larger and greater economy to the galaxy as a whole, in addition to preventing such a gross overstep, such as the Trade Federation blockade on Naboo and monopolies by institutes such as the Banking Clan. Advances in technology allowed for many industries to expand and innovate in ways they could not have done under the corrupt Republic. The establishment of Imperial Academies on planets such as Mandalore gave citizens a reason to be proud and to feel patriotic about their government, along with the populace becoming more ordered under the Emperor’s rule. Sheev Palpatine is somebody who, in such divisive times, all of the glorious Empire can look up to with nothing but a deep admiration. He is truly an inspiration and a hero to us all. 28

Serenity in the Arms of Nature By Josie Dawn Carrillo

Digital Art 29

Girl in Bangla Noboborso Festival By Ali Al Razy Siddiqui

Photograph 30

Bangla Noboborso Festival with Chorkey By Ali Al Razy Siddiqui

Photograph 31

Peace of Mind By Reshonna Rifenbury

Pen and Ink on Acrylic Paint 32

“The Dark, Cold Basement” By Bryan Lam It was 9 p.m., and I was six. I was on my knees begging my sister, crying to her and saying, “Please, please take my place. I’m so scared, please; how come he only does this to me?” My older sister saw the fear in her little brother’s eyes, felt the trembling in my hands, and agreed to take my spot. Suddenly, he, someone who does not deserve recognition, walked in full of rage and anger. My sister and I stared at him with fear in our eyes, as if the devil had just barged through the door. He grabbed me by my wrist and began to drag me out of the room. My sister begged him to take her this time and to let me go. He looked at her and told her to sit down and to stay in the room. He then walked out the door and closed it behind him, and all she could do was sit there, watching the door close as he took me away. He dragged me through the kitchen and to the back of the house where the basement door was located. Once I saw where we were headed, I began to tremble in fear. I knew what lay ahead of me down in that basement. I never liked the basement because of many reasons, but the biggest reason was because of the events that took place in that basement. He reached for the doorknob, twisted it, opened the door, and tried pushed me in, but I held onto the frame of the door, begging him to please not do what I thought he was going to do. He dragged me down the stairs by my wrist. I looked at the door closing slowly behind me as I was being dragged down the stairs. I looked forward and saw a table with a roll of tape on top, and I knew what was about to happen. He pinned me down onto the cold concrete basement floor and began to pull tape from the roll. The screeching sounds of plastic from the tape frightened me even more and caused me to wriggle, struggle, and scream. He sat me upright and tried to apply the tape to my mouth, but I kicked him in the face and tried to get away. This only made him angrier, and he pinned me down again, this time with all his might and with all his weight so that I would not be able to escape again, and taped my mouth shut. After taping my mouth shut, he then tied my ankles and tied my hands behind my back. He picked me up and carried me to the cold, dark basement closet. He left me on the cold concrete floor tied up and not able to speak or move. He then turned off the lights, walked out of the wooden closet door, closing it and locking it behind him. Filled with fear, I lay there on the cold concrete floor in the dark closet with tears spilling out of my eyes. I heard footsteps walking up the stairs, and then I saw the lights in the main basement room turn off and heard the door close. I lay there in the pitch black in silence, no light, nothing. I felt my 33

heartbeat drumming in my ears. Like any other six-year old, I had a big imagination. I believed in fairytales, such as the fairy godmother and angels. As I was lying there, I prayed and begged for a fairy godmother or an angel to come to my rescue. Sadly, after a while, I began to start losing hope and began to start losing my beliefs in fairy tales, and I probably even lost my ability to be a normal happy child again. He never went back upstairs; he stood atop the staircase waiting for me to make noises. I thought he had gone upstairs, so I started screaming in hopes someone would hear. I then saw the lights in the other room turn on again and heard footsteps walking down the staircase. He opened the door angrily, slapped me in the face, kicked me around, and told me to shut up. He told me that if I did not shut up, then worse things would happen to me. I was afraid at the thought of something worse happening to me. What else could be worse than this? He then dragged me over to the corner of the room away from the door and walked back upstairs again. Like the last time, he didn’t really go upstairs; he stood atop the staircase, and this time, he came up with another cruel, sadistic plan. He waited a few minutes with me sitting there quietly in the dark. At this moment, I had already gone numb, and I had no more fight in me. Out of nowhere, I started to hear knocking. I had no idea where it was coming from, and then after a while, the knocks started to get louder and louder; then, all of a sudden the knocks stopped. It was quiet, and I thought it was over and accepted the fact that I was going to be falling asleep down in the basement that night. So I closed my eyes and began to fall asleep. Ten minutes later, I started to hear monster noises, noises like the grudge would make from the movie The Grudge. The grudge was one of my biggest fears, and he knew this. At this moment, I had no more hopes in angels or anything of the sort anymore; all I believed in was evil because that was all I could see and that was all I had ever experienced down there. The noises shook me to the bone, and I was so afraid. But I had no choice but to sit there, staying silent because of the fear that I would be beat again if I screamed; I was frozen with fear. My imagination got the best of me, and I couldn’t sit there in silence anymore. My heart began to pound, and I felt so much fear. I began to feel as if there were actual beings and monsters in the dark room. I was so struck with fear that my mind began to play tricks on me, and I began to see hallucinations. I thought I saw shadows moving in the closet with me, and I even thought I felt something touch my shoulder. Finally, after three hours of mentally torturing me, he decided to finally untie me and let me go free. After I was set free, I ran straight to my bedroom and to my sister and cried to her. He opened the door and told me not to tell anybody, and if I ever did, people would not believe me anyway because I was just a little boy. Until this day, I still never spoke a word of it to anyone, not to my family, not to my friends, nobody—not even my own mother. 34

“My Son’s Last Breath” By Daniel Becerra

My son, It hurts me seeing my son like this, I’ve always prayed to God on this, And now I feel like I owe him a kiss. He keeps on reminding me about his pain, How he prefers drowning than being hit by rain. Before this needle puts you to sleep, I always gave you something to keep, I love you so much after I kiss you on your cheek.


Accidental Beauty By Saren Perales

Photograph 36

“Mirrors” By Bryan Lam Mirrors can speak such painful bleak words Words that should never be heard As I listen to the horrendous words they spout I cannot help but feel the need to shout It tells me I'm nothing and worthless It makes me believe that I have no purpose The mirror reminds me of how, how alone I am Reminding me that no one ever gave a damn I’m sick and tired of hearing the voices It makes me freeze, feeling like I have no choices Feeling like I’m stuck in a cage inside my mind Making me feel like a monster hiding from mankind These mirrors never fail to make me lose my sanity I am tired of feeling like my life is a tragedy I beg and cry for these terrible feelings to go away Please! I’m so tired of not feeling okay I punch the mirror and see my hands bleeding However, I still hear the voices of the mirror scheming Planning its next attack on my fragile thoughts Like a criminal planning to take someone’s life with gunshots How could I have let you corrupt my mind so? Everything in my life fell like dominoes I look at the floor and see the shards of broken glass Pondering and thinking to myself, “I’m such a dumbass” Suddenly, I have an epiphany and come to the realization That I cannot live a life like this full of frustration I must make a change and learn to be brave To not live my life like I have been enslaved No more will I let these voices win It is time for a new life and chapter to begin To live my life believing in myself and being free I will no longer let these mirrors have a hold of me 37

The Walk By Marley Correia

Photograph 38

“My Hero� By Saleh AlGhamdi

When I hear the word hero, I can only think of someone who is strong, brave, hardworking, trustworthy, and unselfish , somebody who can stand by your side when the road gets tough and makes life a whole lot easier and better. My father seems to have all of those qualities. My father has been raised by two wonderful parents that worked extremely hard to raise him in a decent life. He grew up in a big city called Jeddah. My father graduated from high school. After high school, he joined the air force, and then after a few years of serving, he then decided to sign out to continue to further his education in becoming the Ambassador of Saudi Arabia in Portugal. My father remained ambassador for a few years and later decided to retire due to old age and health conditions. He was hardworking and determined to do whatever it took to make his dreams possible. He has always reminded me about how extremely important it is to get an education and to go to school and do well. A hero is a person who is always there for someone no matter what the situation. My father has always been by my side no matter what. If I ever need him, I know he is one call away, either if I'm down or celebrating a new accomplishment in life. There is no one like my father, so selfless. He has always put me first besides God and has done everything he can to be the best father he can be to provide me with the best life possible. My father and I have the best relationship ever. We are 39

like best friends; I can tell him everything, and he is very understanding. One of the best traits about my father is that he is extremely strong willed. My father is not only my hero because of what he provides for me and gives to me and others; he is a great husband, father, and friend. All of the qualities he has as a person I soon hope one day to embody just like him. My father makes me feel like the most important person in the world; always traveling together, doing business together, taking care of the family and the home together, making decisions together—everything we do, we do together. The amount of love I have for my father isjust unexplainable; there are no words to compare to him and how blessed I am to have him as a father. My father has always told me to do what makes God happy, to do what makes me happy, and to do my best always. And that's what makes him my hero, his inspirational words. Every day I try to apply those words to my daily


Wondering What the World Is Like By Samantha Camacho

Photograph 41

Bangla New Year's Eve Festival By Ali Al Razy Siddiqui

Photograph 42

“Oh, Sweet Hummingbird” By Bryan Lam Oh, my sweet, sweet hummingbird Where possibly could you have roamed? From what I have overheard You have forgotten your way home You took the rose you gave to me The rose in which I kept in my soul My soul that was like the Dead Sea Some might say it’s as cold as the North Pole You yanked the rose away from my hand Like a black hole engulfing a star I stare at your cage that’s on my nightstand How could you have gone so far? Oh, my sweet, sweet hummingbird You have come back sitting in my doorway I opened the door to you speaking sweet words However, the rose has withered away I cannot accept a rose in such condition You chose to abandon me out of the blue Was hurting me part of your mission? I guess this is the time I say goodbye to you 43

What’s Left Behind By Reshonna Rifenbury

Mixed Media 44

“Trauma 1” By Ashley Wonsang It was over. Nothing else could be done. The grandparents came right behind the ambulance, so they were first to witness when the doctor gave the time. I had a thin layer of sweat covering my brow as I stepped down from the stepstool, my arms shaking after doing compressions on the child for so long. The room was silent when the child’s grandfather began to yell, soon followed by the grandmother. The Child Life Specialist stood close by, comforting the couple as they lamented. The half dozen nurses soon abandoned the trauma room to record what attempts were made to save the patient. After a few calls, the police and a detective arrived, speaking frankly with the head nurse about the situation. I stayed behind to clean up with the other technician. Our job was to make the room presentable when the father and mother would arrive. We mechanically picked up the equipment and wrapped the patient in a soft blanket, putting a pillow beneath the head. I stood at the bedside for a moment. Aside from the blue lips and lack of chest rise, the child looked as if just sleeping peacefully among the chaotic screaming. This was nothing new. While patients didn’t expire frequently, I’d seen it enough times to push down any feelings that may have previously bubbled to the surface. That was how we distanced ourselves. Patients didn’t die. Patients never died. They expired, like food. They expire like the raw meat that was forgotten in the back of the fridge that was now rancid and stunk, leaking chunky bits of blood and flesh onto the good food. And much like how one would clean the remains of that expired meat, this room would later be cleaned as well. All traces that the patient expired would be cleansed and scrubbed. We thrived on this food. If no one was ever injured or sick, there would be no need for people like us. Although this one expired, another would take his or her place in due time. For now, I waited with a nurse and Child Life Specialist for the parents to arrive. When they did, it took half an hour for the wailing to simmer down to quiet sobs. Both parents, still dressed in work uniforms, sat on opposite sides of the bed, not making eye contact. Did they blame themselves? Or each other? Nothing could foretell what tragedy would sweep the family. Soon, the phone began to ring, asking for organ donations. The mother cried harder. The father buried his face in his hands. As of right then and there, the universe stood still. The officers and 45

detectives stepped out of the room and drew the curtain closed. Silence hung heavily beneath the artificial lighting. Nobody moved. Only the heavy breathing pierced the silence. I looked up to the wall above the equipment. A crucifix, heavily laden with dust, hung above the bed, observing the scene quietly. I excused myself quietly and made my way to the ambulance bay. At this time of night, the city was free of traffic; only the occasional car trudged down the street. The ambulance already gone, I sat by the door with my back against the wall. No stars hung in the sky. The moon was covered by the smog of the city, casting a hazy light on the buildings. Cigarette smoke hung in the air from the previous user of the area. My head felt heavy as my body began to shake, alleviating my system of leftover adrenaline. I frequented this place on several occasions when I needed to get away. The patient’s face swam in my mind. There was nothing else we could do. The patient was a goner from the start. There was no point. It was the same with the toddler and the newborn from months ago. They were gone from the start. They may well have been expired before they were wheeled into the facility. It wasn’t as if it were my fault or any of the staff’s fault. My vision became blurry as tears welled in my eyes. It weren’t as if I could warn the families ahead of time or change the past. What happened was done. I wasn’t heartless. I knew how to feel. I knew how emotions worked. I’d seen plenty of loss and heartache from being in the medical field, but it never got any easier. I wiped my eyes with the back of my hand, standing and leaning against the brick wall. While it was too late for the patient in Trauma 1, I needed to focus on the living patients I still had. They would live to see the sun rise and set again. These patients would grow up to be engineers, architects, teachers, chefs, and more. These patients needed just as much attention as we gave Trauma 1. The radio piece in my ear chirped, “Can I have an available tech do a straight stick in A3?” I took a large breath of air as I stepped back into the building.


Shell By Zihan Zhao

Charcoal, Pencil, & Ink 47

“Alma Mater” By Jesse Reyna As I near the end of my time here at St. Philip’s College, the words alma mater begin to materialize in my thoughts more and more often. People today associate alma mater with the school, college, or university that they once attended, and rightfully so. Upon a great deal of introspection, coupled with some minor research, I found that alma mater’s Latin origin literally means ‘bounteous mother.’ In a general sense, it is someone or something providing nourishment, a mother of the soul, if you will. If that is the case, then in the grand scheme of things, I see education itself as the supreme alma mater in and of itself. People may argue that religion is the mother of the soul, but is it not just another form of education? Does it not enrich one’s mind and compel him or her to do great things in life much like education? Does it not stimulate spontaneous thought and inspire epiphany? Does it not compel us to explore the unknown in both ourselves and the universe alike for the betterment of mankind? Does it not force us to push the limits of the impossible until it becomes possible and, dare I say, eventually mundane? If you ask me, the answer to every question posed is a resounding yes! The institutions we attend are merely surrogates serving the cause of the grand, bounteous mother, Education, and to those institutions, I am eternally grateful. Thank you for helping spread our mother’s love and nourishment. Thank you, St. Philip’s, for enriching the soul and giving both spiritual and intellectual sustenance to this otherwise poor, forsaken waif of a man.


Beautifully Played By Ronisha Saunders

Photograph 49

“An ‘Ordinary’ Dream” By LaTyjua Haslip Every night I dream of a beguiling perilous journey. Oh, how the journey takes risk of my mind. I am able to change water into wine And remission into vengeance. Peaceful dreams of wild white lilies afloat water Turn into a pessimistic entrapment, Like one feels atop a mucky situation. Beauty afloat of pain and misunderstanding. I have become oblivious to these dreams, As they’re oblivious to me. As ‘they’ do as they please. As I am them, as they are me. How ordinary the level of the extraordinary. How extraordinary the level of ordinary. One mustn't change without Reason. For beauty is nothing without bearing the pain.


Watercolors By Erik M. Tavarez

Photograph 51

“Hunter” By Sarah Fox The first time I saw you, I couldn’t believe you had blonde hair and blue eyes, a prayer answered. I awoke in a groggy state, still knowing the instant love I had for you. You were everything I had imagined. You stole my heart with your sweet, innocent face and the sound of your newborn cry. You were everything I had hoped for nine months before; your movements, jabs, and the endless hiccups that made my tummy rise and fall. Meanwhile, in the back of my mind, I let fear overtake me in an overwhelming way regarding your future and mine. Oh, how I loved you: your smirk, eyebrows, lips, and your tiny peach-fuzzed head. I loved absolutely everything about you; every milestone I imagined you accomplishing—the thought of you graduating, the honors, the speech you may make as you smiled, the satisfaction of your achievements. Suddenly, I let myself feel a burst of pride just thinking about your future and mine. I wanted to imagine that everything was going to be right, that you were perfect, a winner, an answer to my former life. Hearing your sweet cries, I knew everything was going to be okay; the lies he told me over time meant everything yet nothing because I knew in the end, we would end up alone, incapable of being able to share a life with us. Then, I was left with my own decisions for my life and my child and to look for a future of realistic significance. I would not scorn those who left me abandoned and betrayed. Looking at the realism, knowing I wanted more for the both of us, I persevered through my own heartache. I would catch my life and take many pictures. I was born, only after he, too, was born, forever my baby.


Mother By Lauren Estrada

Watercolor Pencils 53

The Fine Line between Freedom and Captivity By Giselle Marie Vasquez

Photograph 54

“In Dog Years” By Sonia Carmona Each day I age, seven times than you. My body aches. I cannot walk nor can I see. My heart is weak because I am old. One day soon, I will be gone. You have been my friend for many years. Soon our friendship will be gone. Our love will soon be tested. Be strong for both of us. For your walk is strong and not as frail. Your vision crisp to see afar. One day I’ll be gone, but not for long. Until we meet, I say hello. For dog years too will come and go.


“G” By Giselle Marie Vasquez I saw your breath upon the air, The sun shone off your auburn hair. All freshly sprung flowers doth sing your name: Gabriel. The moments spent through longest days Have wrapped me in a dreamlike haze. The cricket symphony chirps your name: Gabriel. And with your heart so tender sweet, Did surely sweep me off my feet. The autumn breeze blows as you speak, Dear Gabriel. Though nights are cold, love keeps me warm, You shelter me through every storm. The winter trembles at your feet, My Gabriel. The years come fast; they pave the ways, For me to love you through all my days. Your name’s like candy to my soul, Sweet Gabriel. -G


Miss You By Lauren Estrada

Copic Markers 57

Bangla Noboborso Face-Toon By Ali Al Razy Siddiqui

Photograph 58

"Butterfly Love" By Trinidad Covarrubias A silent thought never taken, could I be mistaken. “You sang to me.” Vibrations from within, as soft as butterfly kisses against my skin. “You sang to me.” I listened closer as your songs grew stronger. Tiny flutters from within like butterfly wings flapping in the wind. “You sang to me.” I sat in silence, and to my surprise, not one but two of thee! A tiny tug straight to my heart; it was you two right from the start! “You sang to me.” What a beautiful creation, I was not mistaken. “You came from me.”


“Fly� By Margarita Guajardo Walking, panting, pacing, Watch her as she goes. Her body, moving forward, The ground beneath her toes. No one sees the pain, No one hears the woes, The everlasting feeling, They will never know. She walks past endless bodies, Waiting for the day, When true love will find her, And she can fly away. Away from all the worries, Away from all the fears, Away from all the bounds, Away from all the tears. Her life she lives, Her mind it cries, Please, oh, please! Someone take her, Take her before she flies.


Laugh with the Eyes By Marley Correia

Photograph 61

“Hunger� By Kara Lazzaretti The hunger for what belongs to another Is as green as envy A ghastly green that will destroy you The hunger for controversy and war Is as red as blood A raging red that will consume you The hunger for lust masquerading as love Is as scarlet as her lips A scandalous scarlet that will leave you The hunger for death and destruction Is as black as your soul A bottomless black that will end you The hunger for things that never satisfy Is the color of humanity An indescribable shade that will always be


Panda Action By Ronisha Saunders

Digital Art 63

Tambourin Falls By Saren Perales

Photograph 64

“The Glades” By Kara Lazzaretti There’s a single glorious moment before dawn Instead of swarming noise the glade is quiet The buzz of cicadas slowly softens until it’s gone The chirping crickets are now completely silent

Only one singular noise remains daring to be defiant The costal wind rustles through the reeds anyway For the wind cares nothing about why the glade is silent The rest of us hold our breath waiting for the sun’s first ray

Then there it is, early dawn’s pale orange light Piercing through the darkest of nights The entire glade takes a breath at the sight Assuring us we’ve made it to another day


Our Judges Prose: San Juan San Miguel, MA, is the Coordinator of the Rose R. Thomas Writing Center at St. Philip’s College. He is also an Adjunct Instructor in the Communications and Learning Department. He has a Master’s Degree in English Literature from UTSA and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English from St. Mary’s University. He enjoys traveling, cooking (and eating,) cycling, reading and writing but most of all basketball! He is currently in pursuit of his lifelong ambition to be an NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Coach. Poetry: Marissa Ramirez, MA, has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Latin American Studies from Oberlin College and a Master of Arts Degree in English from the University of Texas, San Antonio. Before embarking on a career as an English instructor, Ramirez worked as an event organizer with a local cultural arts organization. She has a seven-year-old son, and together they love to travel the world, eat ice cream, and sleep under the stars. Art & Photography: Mitchell Miranda, MA, is an awardwinning artist and photographer and is a graduate of St. Philip’s College. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art and a Bachelor of Science in Cultural Anthropology from Baylor University; he received a Master’s Degree in Middle Eastern & Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology from University College London’s Institute of Archaeology and is currently a doctoral student at Reading University in England. His artwork has been exhibited around the state, and he has been named a Texas Emerging Artist. When abroad, he FaceTimes his pet gecko, Little Man.




Profile for Tiger PAWS

Tiger PAWS Spring 2017  

Literary art journal composed of St. Philip's College students' writing and artwork and edited by a student editorial staff

Tiger PAWS Spring 2017  

Literary art journal composed of St. Philip's College students' writing and artwork and edited by a student editorial staff

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