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contents side a

Page 1

∆ Darn Them (Traditional Ghazal)

Cover designed by Jordan Wylie

Page 5

Page 7

Page 11

∆ Ode To A Childhood Summer

∆ Illustrations by Vadim

∆ My Inner Light by Sophia

by Dr .Thom Chesney

by Gretchen Parra

Dozmorov

Stavron

∆ Illustration by Janeth Davalos

∆ Photo by Maddox Price

∆ Photo by Mauricio Luna

∆ Agnostic Acrostic

∆ My Love, One Click

Page 2-3

Page 8-9

by Dr. Thom Chesney

∆ Cancer: It’s Kind Of A Big

by Sophia Stavron

∆ Pine Tree Has Risen

∆ Photo by Vikki Ethington

Deal by Aubrey Williams

∆ Photo by Maddox Price

by Kathryn DeBruler ∆ Photo by Nicholas Bostick

∆ Photos by Claudia Valerio

Page 12

Page 6 ∆ Conflicted by Melody Guerra

∆ QEP Enhancement Q&A and

Page 4

Page 10

Landa

∆ Broken by Thaun Lam

photos by Mary Catherine

∆ Sonnet 1 to Matt Gibson: The

∆ Bottled Up by Brandy

∆ The Wall by Wonsup Shin

∆ Background photo by

Fever by Erin Marissa Russell

Walthall

∆ Seasons by Jihoon Kim

Vargha Manshadi

∆ Photo by Dr. John Neal

∆ Art by Janeth Davalos

∆ Change by Hye-Sug Jang

Welcome to the first issue of The Windmill – a literary magazine or “zine” showcasing the work of dozens of talented, creative individuals who all call Brookhaven College home. What you hold in your hands is the culmination of countless hours of hard work by students enrolled in journalism and photography courses at Brookhaven College. The Brookhaven Courier staff and advisers teamed with English professor Aaron Clarke in Spring 2013 to draw in not only written works but photography, art and illustrations from the students, staff, faculty and employees of Brookhaven College. Then, in May, The Windmill staff gathered together and read every submission and reviewed all the art before the project began in Summer I. Keeping space limitations in mind, Windmill staff voted on submissions and separated them by categories like nature, love and death and then paired the literary works with similar art or photography. Throughout the summer months, each page was thoughtfully laid out, read, re-read and edited for accuracy. This project will hopefully be a catalyst for The Windmill to become a bi-yearly publication.

∆ Photo by Vikki Ethington

DISCLAIMER: This publication may not be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission from the editor. The Windmill’s editorial and design positions are held by student enrolled in the journalism and photography courses offered by the Communications Division at Brookhaven College. The material published in The Windmill was culled from entries submitted by students, staff, faculty and administrators of Brookhaven College. Any thoughts, opinions or ideas, either expressed or implied in this publication are those of the individual writers or artist and do not necessarily represent or reflect those of the administration, faculty, the student body of Brookhaven College or the staff of The Brookhaven Courier. Correspondence to the editors should be sent to the attention of The Brookhaven Courier, Brookhaven College, 3939 Valley View Lane, Farmers Branch, TX 75244, or emailed to bhccourier@dcccd. edu. All rights revert to authors or artists upon publication. Editor-In-Chief Maddox Price Managing Editor Azure Wedan Art Director Jordan Wylie Copy Editor Chris Allison Photo Editor Eriana Ruiz

Windmill Advisers Daniel Rodrigue Aaron Clark Staff Adriana Salazar Nicholas Bostick Vadim Dozmorov Anacany Moreno Mary Catherine Editorial Consultants Rori Harrington Erin Marissa Russell

Illustration by Travis Self


Darn them (traditional ghazal) A simple plan — neatly wrought Instant win — or so I thought.

Two inches more ‘round each hole? That’s too much to sew, I thought.

Patch her jeans, the knees are worn — 10 minutes or so, I thought.

Ruined them, Dad! How could you? House fell empty; so, I thought. - Dr. Thom Chesney

Good enough for her to wear? Only look so-so, I thought.

Illustration by Janeth Davalos

Fall 2013 | The Windmill | 1


Pine Tree Has Risen By Kathryn DeBruler

“T

hank you for calling SloTix. My name is Michael, ho -” And the caller hangs up, or drives under a bridge, or drops their phone in the bathtub. I don’t know why, but they do. There I am with my headset on and tickets to sell and no one to buy them. This happens a few times every day. I find it emotionally depleting every time. I started working here at SloTix about four years ago. We’re - I say we because I identify with the company the same way that other guys identify with football teams - a ticketing agency based in Des Moines, Iowa. What started out as a father and son endeavor eventually grew into the Midwest’s most prolific ticket sales company, aimed at promoting family oriented events. SloTix is a Christian company. My boss, Mr. Slocum, is the cornerstone. He likes to joke that he grew closer to God when he started scalping tickets in the 1970s. As a kid he would go out on weekends with his dad, (also Mr. Slocum) would hock tickets to Iowa State games on street corners. Mr. Slocum (the younger) said that every time he was able to sell a $10 ticket for $50, he would exclaim, “Good God!” and that was how he got to be so religious. I like Mr. Slocum a lot, despite all his inherent hypocrisies. He gave me a chance. We sell tickets to events like The Ten Commandoments, which is a play that combines Bible stories with pyrotechnics and fake explosions. I don’t say it like that to customers, because then they won’t buy anything, so instead I say that The Ten Commandoments is a highly illustrative reimagining of the Bible, enhanced visually by pyrotechnics and simulated explosions, all starting at the low-low price of $39.95 per ticket, not including applicable fees and service charges. Sometimes when people call in for tickets to things like The Ten Commandoments, I start to question myself. What am I doing and why am I doing it? The long and short 2 | Fall 2013 | The Windmill

Photo by Nicholas Bostick of it is that I am doing a job that doesn’t matter, for money that does. I have a lot of debt. Funerals, in case you’ve never had to pay for one, are as expensive as they are sad. Like my parents always say, “Pleated satin linings don’t pay for themselves.” Which leads me to a confession. I am not alive. You’re way ahead of me, right? You’re thinking that here’s a guy who works a menial, minimum wage job. He’s unfulfilled. He’s dead inside. Well, you’re half right. I am dead on the inside. But I’m also dead on the outside. Like, Judy Garland dead. Suckling pig at a family reunion dead. Doorknob - eh, you get the idea. My untimely death occurred when I was 17, after going over to my grandmother’s house one day after school. She - my grandmother (affectionately known as Mi Maw) - had called me to

complain that my mother, who brought her groceries once a week, had put the paper towels too high for her to reach. I remember not wanting to go over to her house that day. I wanted to go home and watch TV in my room, but I also didn’t want to be a bad grandson. So I went to her house, all dutiful-like, and got out the stepstool. My mother really had put them quite high. I don’t know what she was thinking. Even with the stepstool, it was a reach. As I grabbed the package of Mounty (my family likes to buy Canadian off-brands) the stepstool collapsed. It was old and had rusty hinges. I was maybe two feet off the ground, but I’ve never been the most graceful person. As I fell, I hit my head on the pointed corner of my grandmother’s linoleum kitchen counter. Some men die in battle, at

the hand of others, their bodies riddled with bullets. A hero’s death. Me? I bonked my noggin on a decorating faux pas from the 1960s. The counter, not counting the blood splatter, was orange and had a yellow sunburst pattern, proving that for some, there is no mercy in death. So I died. And that was that. I watched the EMTs take my body out in a bag. Talk about a surreal experience. They almost dropped me as they were putting me on the stretcher. Do you have any idea how disconcerting it is to see people be so negligent with your corpse? I was still warm, for Christ’s sake. Then there was the funeral, with all of its pageantry and crying and those super creepy floral arrangements - the ones shaped like rings. Meanwhile, my parents were losing their minds from all the


grief, because they saw me sitting on the couch every day. I didn’t know what else to do after I died, so I just watched lots of TV. I definitely couldn’t go to school, because people tend to be suspicious of a corpse doing chemistry. I guess my parents thought that I would go away after they were done with the first stages of grieving - that they’d be able to move on with their lives. But I just sat there and became more and more acquainted with the wonders of daytime television. If you ever need to know anything about game shows, soap operas or talk shows aimed at the stayat-home-mom set, I’m your man. It took about four months of me watching TV to convince my parents that I was dead, but not what I refer to as “dead dead.” If you’re dead, then your body may be in the ground, but that’s just a representational thing - you still have to walk your dog and pay bills and stuff like that. But if you’re dead dead, then you’re just worm food. To convince my parents that I was just dead and not dead dead, I had to implement every argumentative tactic from my adolescent artillery. As a teenager, I was used to having to repeatedly argue a case for myself. I had successfully convinced my parents to get me a dog, extend my curfew on three separate occasions and to let me get a tattoo for my eighteenth birthday. So we talked it over, and after much emphatic pleading and hand waving, I was able to win them over. I think what really sold them was when I got an old sheet, cut two holes for eyes and put it on. I followed my parents around the house saying, “Boo. I’m a ghost.” They agreed that it really was me and that they weren’t going crazy but that the situation itself was. My mom and dad’s main concern was that if our friends or neighbors found out about the whole being dead, but not dead dead thing that either my entire family would be committed, or we would have to be interviewed by Barbara Walters. My family hates Barbara Walters. It was decided that I would be a secret and that my new life would start now. While all my friends were preparing to go off to college, I began to look for work. Something that

“My mom asks me not to do this, saying that I am a dysfunctional slob. Then I remind her that I am a dysfunctional dead slob and she goes away”

would be fulfilling, earn well, and lead to better opportunities while not exposing my dead ass to the world. As it turns out, no such job exists. So I became a call center rep. The job is perfect for my dead lifestyle. I don’t have to leave the house (although I do at night, when all my suburban neighbors are inside yelling at each other) and I can work in my underwear. My mom asks me not to do this, saying that I am a dysfunctional slob. Then I remind her that I am a dysfunctional dead slob and she goes away. Even though I don’t really believe in what I do, I still do it well. I greet the customer clearly and state my name. I smile while I talk because I read a magazine article a few years ago that said a smile can be discerned in conversation without the other person ever seeing your mouth. I really do try to get people the best seats, and I’m honest with them when they ask if they’re in the nosebleeds. I ask how their day is going when my computer lags and there’s a lull in productive conversation. We talk about their dog, barking in the background, or about shows they’ve seen in the past. I am, for all intents and purposes, the perfect employee. It’s not just the way in which I approach customers that makes me a great employee but the fact that I don’t have a lot of needs. Think about it - I don’t need smoke breaks, let alone lunch breaks, I never eat up valuable company time taking a piss and I don’t have to sleep. Of course, I don’t let my boss know that, or I’d have no life.The hardest part about my job was just getting hired. When the only qualification is the applicant’s ability to fog a mirror, well, I’m instantly the lowest man on the hiring totem pole. Coupled with the fact that I had no work experience and smelled like

death, made for an interesting interview. Whenever I go out in public, I always wear a pine tree under my clothes - the ones that they make for cars. It’s demeaning but effective. I have to wear one, otherwise people would pick up on a definite stank – the fishy, worst side effect of being dead. My parents and I have tried every other remedy we can think of. I’ve sat in bathtubs full of tomato juice, doused myself in rubbing alcohol and invested heavily in deodorants, but nothing works except for that damn tree. SloTix is located four towns over from where I live. In general, Iowans only leave their hometowns for weddings, funerals and a once-a-year shopping excursion to the Des Moines International Shopping Mall. So when I do need to go into the office, I can do so knowing that the odds of running into anyone I might know are slim. Luckily, I don’t have to go often - mostly just for training days or company workshops. Workshops often involve having to fall, backwards, into the arms of a co-worker. I don’t like having to do this, as this level of close personal interaction, combined with movement, means that I have to wear two pine trees at a time. Most of the time I work from home. I take, on average, 90 calls during an eight-hour shift. I sell more tickets than anyone else in my department, but the majority of my calls don’t involve a sale at all. Most of the time, I’m just answering questions about sound quality or how Will Call works. Then there are the calls when all I have to do is lend an ear to people who need someone to talk to. As it turns out, there are a lot of lonely people in this world. I can empathize. It’s a lonely business being dead. But the people I’m talking to aren’t dead. I

don’t know this for sure though - for all I know, the world could be full of dead people. I assume that if there were lots of people like me, we would have developed a code for communicating with each other by now. Like, we would say, “10-4, pine tree has risen,” or something like that. No, the people I talk to have different problems. I listen and say reassuring things, all while keeping a close eye on my talk time and looking for ways to segue the conversation back to The Ten Commandoments. “It’s just so hard doing things by yourself for the first time,” says the customer. “I completely understand. Moving to a new city after a divorce can be really difficult,” I reply. “Oh? You’ve been in my shoes before?” It’s better for my sales numbers if I lie, and I like to think that it’s better for the customer, too. They need someone to lie to them. “Unfortunately, yes,” I reassure them. “I think the one thing that really helped me was just forcing myself to get out and do things. Just because your life took an unexpected turn doesn’t mean you don’t deserve to enjoy it along the way.” There’s a pause. I can hear a cha-ching on my end. “You know what? You’re right. That’s what I’ve been telling myself, but it’s so nice to hear it come from someone else. Even if you are a stranger. What did you say your name was again?” “Michael.” “Well, Michael, you’re a wise man. You obviously know how to live life to the fullest.” “Thank you, ma’am. I try. Now let’s get you out of the house and into a seat. Would you prefer orchestra or mezzanine?” “Give me your best available. If I’m going to enjoy myself, I might as well do it right.” “Couldn’t have said it better myself, ma’am. Now will we be putting that on Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover?” I end the call by thanking the woman for her purchase, telling her to enjoy the show and asking if I can provide any further assistance. She says no, that I’ve done enough. This makes me feel good and like the pine trees are worth it – almost like I’m not dead inside. Or outside. R Fall 2013 | The Windmill | 3


Sonnet 1 to Matt Gibson: The Fever Like shuddering from a thick, fitful sleep Like the final, freeing cycle in a fractal dream I used to deem love a beautiful torment A stony weight that ached in your veins Burning fever that kept you up all night And raw, tender skin to pull the world through But like laughing before I open my eyes The call of the threading train that weaves through Every window in town, one song stitching This breath to the next, the next, the next ... Your love tells me I am not only That mockery I meet in the mirror But three dimensions unfolding in a fourth unity And angles indiscernible without your refracting light. - Erin Marissa Russell

4 | Fall 2013 | The Windmill

Photo by Dr. John Neal


Ode to a Childhood Summer Up early we’d be, my siblings and I, Playing all day under the bright desert sky. Barefoot we’d walk down alleys and roads, Sometimes we’d find fat lizards called horny toads. Bermuda grass, lawn games and a sticker or two, Mother-May-I, Red Rover and a game of Statue. Soon we’d go home for a break and a meal, Peanut butter sandwiches and Let’s Make a Deal. Swimming lessons at “the beach” and the smell of Coppertone. Ball parks, little league, and a pickle juice snow cone. Forts we would build, sting rays we would ride, We’d have to go soon, no more could we hide. Grandpa’s house and family and Chiclets gum, Toys in the toy box and more fun to come. Ghost stories with cousins outside in the night, Uncles in sheets did scare us outright. Good times in summer we had were quite vast. Family and sunshine made memories that last. - Gretchen Parra

Photo by Maddox Price

Agnostic Acrostic When I asked you How to repair A poem, you Told me no one Expected a Verse of mine to Effect change or Realize dreams. - Dr. Thom Chesney

Photo by Vikki Ethington

Fall 2013 | The Windmill | 5


conflicted Don’t push me. Please push me. I hope for a treacherous fall. I can’t stand the waiting. I can’t stand the anticipation. Love me; Hate me. Hate my eyes. Hate my dreams. Hate my desires. Please love me. Push me over the edge. I ask you. I beg you. Love me more. Hate me less. Don’t ever stop. Can’t stand this cage I’ve built for myself; A barrier between me and my dreams; A cascade of tears; A dam of fears; Fears that trap me; Want me; Release me; Force me. Hate my lies; Love my binding ties. Tear me down; Break the wall that consumes me. Love me; Hate me. I don’t care. Shove my past into the future. Take my future and burst it open. Tear my life apart; I give full permission. Help me shed my tears; Blow my mind; Wake me up. I’m blind. I can see everything so clearly. I see you; You see me; I see so little; I see so much.

Bottled Up Send me your love in a bottle of Chianti. Tainted red with the sweet smell of you. The taste of your girth lingers on my lips like my favorite hymn. You, my addiction, staining my soul with the remnant(s) of life. Bringing forth a passion in me that erupts like the sun to the Eastern sky. Filling my cup with enough love for a lifetime. Turning a simple touch into a blissful night. I flinch as your fingertips navigate my spine. Your thumb imprinted on my body identifying with my warm flesh. Soft whispers in my ear of sweet somethings to come. Gazing in my eyes watching the story in my soul. And I’m occupied in your eyes. Drowning in your dimples, tracing your outline from head to toe; Simply bewildered by God’s magnificent creation. Loved up to the moon, viewing my reflection in the pool of your heart. Enamored with your aroma stirring idly in the air. Returning me to a modest state in life, a point with few cares. If this is a dream, don’t wake me. If reality becomes harsh, help me bear. If time is split at its seam of existence, let us prevail where time is unknown. This is love. This is the purest image of beauty. This is a long sigh goodnight. This is an extended stretch good morning. This is April’s first shower. This is Southern tea in the summer’s shade. This is November’s final leaf. This is winter’s first chill. This is the Richter’s largest quake. This is love.

- Brandy Walthall

Love me; Hate me. Never give up on me. - Melody Guerra Landa 6 | Fall 2013 | The Windmill

Illustration by Janeth Davalos


Illustrations by Vadim Dozmorov

Fall 2013 | The Windmill | 7


Cancer: It’s kind of a big deal By Aubrey Williams

C

ancer has always been a dominant and overpowering force in my life. My first real feeling of loss was when my grandmother passed away from lung cancer in 1994. I was sitting in the gym during one of what seemed like 50 “end-of-the-year assemblies,” watching the dust particles dance in the sunlight filtering through the Hersheybar-shaped windows, when an assistant principal walked over to the 7th grade section with a determined look on his face. Everyone glanced around nervously, wondering which prank had been discovered and who would be expelled or punished. Did he discover that Mr. Hagen’s door had been glued shut? Had he walked into the Saran Wrap covering the open doorway? Ignoring the teachers entirely, he asked a girl named Amy where Aubrey was. Amy, a snobby, backstabbing liar, vaguely waved away from me, saying she was not even sure who Aubrey was. Tentatively, I raised my hand. As I did, I wondered what I could possibly be in trouble for; I was not behind any of the pranks, just amused by them. He told me to come with him; I needed to get my things and clean out my locker quickly. My nervous footsteps echoed throughout the deserted hallways, the doors slamming behind us, amplified to the point that I wanted to cover my ears. He did not speak and began to walk at a faster pace, forcing me to run to keep up. Finally, unable to take the agonizing silence any more, I 8 | Fall 2013 | The Windmill

Photo by Claudia Valerio said, “Mr. Watkins? What did I do? Am I in trouble?” He offered no information, and told me it would be explained when I reached the office. I hurriedly cleared my locker, my hands trembling as I crammed notebooks, pencils and candy-colored scraps of paper into every available pocket of my backpack. With a resounding clang, my locker slammed shut for what would be the final time that year. “Who gets kicked out of school with only three days left in the school year?” I wondered aloud as he walked (and I ran to keep up) to the office. If he heard me, he didn’t show it, and I know he had to have heard me. When I rounded the corner, I stopped with a lurch, the assistant principal slamming into me, propelling me forward into a heap in front of my mother. She stared at me, eyes red, sniffling. I stayed on the floor, knowing my legs would not hold me up. “Is it Dad?” I asked, my words barely audible due to an uncontrollable shaking as my eyes began to sting with pent-up

tears. She shook her head, as the secretary assured her there would be no trouble if I missed the remainder of the year. I watched the two women, my mother and the secretary, exchange a look. Mrs. Campbell patted my mother’s hand tenderly. Terrified, I wondered if I would be able to get up. My mother helped me stand and, wrapping her arms around me, we walked out of the school. My little sister, Katie, was waiting in the car, her eyes rimmed with red, her cherry nose sniffling at regular intervals. “Will somebody PLEASE tell me what’s going on?” I yelled. As we drove toward our home, bumping over the dirt road, the clouds of dust enveloping us in a dark cloud even on this sunny May afternoon, I became aware of what was happening. My grandmother, my dad’s mother, had gone into a coma, and this time the doctors and nurses were sure she wouldn’t recover. My grandmother had been sick for as long as I could remember. Diagnosed with lung cancer long before I was born, she died mul-

tiple times, and multiple times she was resuscitated, not ready to leave her children or unborn grandchildren just yet. I never knew my grandmother without her “nose hose,” the nickname my cousins and I gave her oxygen tubing when we were children. Even though she was ill, she was still my favorite person. I loved spending the night at her house, watching her shows or a John Wayne movie with her while she drank cup after cup of coffee and I sipped a Big Red float. She told us stories about her life, growing up in the foothills of rural Tennessee, and had us laughing hysterically as she told us about how horrible my dad had been as a child. As I remembered all of those things, I realized why my mother did not want to say anything to me in the office of my school. My grandmother died six days later on Memorial Day. We rushed to be by her side, because my mom and dad finally thought we were old enough to tell her goodbye. In her cool, dimly lit room, I sat holding her hand,


sitting next to my uncle, as my dad sang to her in the way that only he can. His voice, strong and true even with tears streaming down his face, accompanied by the soft beeping of the monitors tracking her breaths and heartbeats, is something I will remember always. As he finished the last line of “Amazing Grace,” his voice wavered on the final note as it broke into a gut-wrenching sob. I heard a soft gasp, almost a dreamy sigh, from my grandmother. I thought she was showing her appreciation to my father, but I later learned that was, in fact, her last breath. She left this earth on the final notes of my dad’s song, holding my hand, and I will always be thankful that I was able to share that moment with my dad. My mother’s father passed away two short years later from a different type of cancer. He had been bitter about his diagnosis and refused treatment, claiming he no longer cared if he lived or died. My grandmother, the glue that held her family together, whose life was not complete unless she was doting on her husband or doing something for her children or grandchildren, became a different person as well. My grandfather constantly yelled about the unfairness of it all. Spit sprayed whoever was in close range, his angry words slashing through even the thickest skin like a knife dipped in poison. He alienated himself from everyone, and yet, everyone still cared and showed concern for him, causing him to become more furious. On a chilly Monday morning in October, I begged my mother

to let me stay home from school. I had spent all weekend with friends: attending a hockey game, having a bonfire, playing hide & seek in the dark and staying up until the wee hours of the night. She thought I was exhausted, but I pleaded, “Mom, please let me stay home. I have this feeling that something’s going to happen with Grandpa, and I want to be here with you if it does.” “Aubrey, if something happens I’ll come get you right away, I promise,” she said as I reluctantly boarded the bus for school and shuffled my way through class. At 9:26 a.m., I was sitting in my geology class when the intercom squawked to life, the feedback causing everybody in the small room to cringe as a voice fought through waves of static. “Mr. Becker, please send Aubrey to the office ready to check out.” I remember telling my best friend, “My grandfather died. Tell everyone I won’t be there this weekend.,” and walked silently out of the room. When I reached the office, I ignored the sympathetic looks from the office staff and asked my mom, “Is he dead?” She burst into tears, devastated over the loss of her father, the man she loved so dearly but never got to say goodbye to, and this time I was the one who consoled her. My heart had been hardened toward the grandfather I had adored as a child, the man whose bitterness over the “unfair hand he had been dealt” became more important than those who loved him. This loss was easier to handle in a way, but it still hurt knowing

Photo by Claudia Valerio

I would never hear his voice yelling out the answers to the puzzles on “Wheel of Fortune,” desperately trying to beat me at solving it. As I grew up, I knew that I wanted to work with children, so when my dad told me of an opportunity to work with pediatric cancer patients I jumped at the chance. I remember my first day on the Hematology/Oncology floor vividly: the constant electronic beeping of monitors and IV pumps, the buzzing of pagers made audible as they buzzed against change or pens bouncing around in scrub pockets, the simplistic laughter of children who know they are sick but do not realize how serious it is, and the overly-clean smell of disinfectant. The fluorescent lights glared overhead as an LED star streaked across the ceiling panel painted to look like outer space, while the automatic doors opened and closed with a ‘WHOOSH’ as staff, patients and parents walked in and out of the outer hallway and playroom. Seated at the desk with a trainer, I learned there would be a new admit: a four-year-old boy who had just been diagnosed. His mom and dad, dressed in tattered clothing with matted hair and dark circles under their eyes, could barely walk through the door. “Why him?” his mother cried, while her husband consoled her. Their utter heartbreak struck a chord with me, and as a parent, I could not even begin to imagine what they were going through. As the new person on the floor, I was stuck working the overnight shift, and it seemed like the child’s parents never slept. We became close, talking almost every night for hours on end while he slept fitfully, muttering about superheroes in his dreams. His dream? To meet Spider-Man and to help catch a bad guy. A month later, he was still in the transplant unit (the rooms set aside for those who are the most at risk), when Spider-Man 2 came out in theaters. One afternoon, he heard a knock on his door and using all the energy he could muster, he whispered, “Come in.” In walked Tobey Maguire in full Spider-Man costume. His mouth dropped open and tears streamed down his swollen face as Spider-Man announced that he had brought

along a sneak peek of Spider-Man 2 in hopes that he would want to watch it with him. For two hours this little boy sat with his hero, watching him capture villains and save the city. Within a few days, the little boy stopped breathing and was sent to the Intensive Care Unit. I visited him every day before I left to go home and stopped in to see his parents each night when I returned. One morning I left after kissing his mottled cheek and was almost home when I got a call from his nurse. “We just lost him,” she said. “And his mom is asking for you. How quickly can you get back up here?” I turned around, racing back to the hospital. I flew up the stairs and into the outer ICU waiting room. His mom and dad were leaning against the window and I opened my arms. She fell into them and as I held her up, she sobbed, hiccupping, “Why?” over and over and over again. Her husband asked if I would go back into his room with them, because they did not want to go alone, and I agreed. I did not feel it was necessary to tell them it was my first time seeing a newly deceased body. He looked peaceful (although the blue and purple marbling all over his body was disturbing at first glance); he was free of tubes and machines, the end credits of Spider-Man played in the background and I thought it fitting that our little hero had passed away in the presence of his hero on the television screen. Meeting that boy, getting to know his family, gave me the push I needed to choose a career. Working with cancer patients is not for everybody. Working with pediatric cancer patients is even more difficult, but it is not a decision from which I have ever wavered. Making a difference in the lives of children and their families is something I feel I was made to do. Cancer is the victorious villain who makes no excuses and refuses to accept defeat, for it will not go quietly, nor will it go without inflicting as much pain as possible, and yet ... every single day there are those who triumph over cancer, successfully ensuring that cancer does not have a win in the win column or the final word. I intend to be there, fighting with them every step of the way. R Fall 2013 | The Windmill | 9


Broken

No talking, no laughing. All I want is family feeling. Since when things turned out this way. The food so cold. - Thuan Lam

The Wall Fly like a bird Beyond the wall Beyond the world Rush like a buffalo Tear down the wall Tear down the prejudice - Wonsup Shin

Seasons

There is a season for everything A season for sunshine, a season for rain It’s always changing and never staying the same Leaves drop from trees in the fall while flowers bloom in the spring Everything has its season; it’s always a continuous transforming Flowers bloom after harsh winter to shed some light on the world They show through hardship that there will come a day Where everything goes well, according to your way Life is like that too, never standing at rest For one thing happens and then the next, so we are on a never-ending quest

Change

This man was taking a walk one day. He stopped to look at the flowers in full bloom. He thought to himself, How ordinary and repetitive his life was … following the same pattern. So he wanted to change his direction in life like those flowers that were lively and in full bloom. - Hye-Sug Jang

- Jihoon Kim

Photo by Vikki Ethington 10 | Fall 2013 | The Windmill


MY INNER LIGHT

I am your guide through any storm. I am your heart, so use my compass. Life may throw you punches, but I do not bruise. I have no fear, and for faith and love, I have endless amounts of space. Spiritual warrior, from your past battles, you have built protection made of steel. If you allow me, shed your steel walls, and I will heal your wounds. In the depths of your soul, worry is not welcomed through my door.   I forgive you. Sweetness is your lips as you speak your truth to the ones you love. Self-doubt tributes to loneliness, so use my key of love to free yourself and join me in life. I rejoice in the selfless beauty that you shine into the hearts of others. Your mark is always made, and the stamp of love is never forgotten. Together we make dreams come true, so don’t dress the light of your star. Listen for the sirens in your bust. I whisper in your ear the direction of your life’s passion. Music, creativity, and service to others are a healthy lust. Unconditional love is all that I have for you and I’m glad you keep me full. I am your daily flame.   I exist here forever.   Your light never burns out.

- Sophia Stavron

  Photo by Mauricio Luna

MY LOVE, ONE CLICK

 

I feel the excitement tingling up and down my spine as your profile is matched to mine. It’s not the snow-tipped mountains in the background that have caught my eye. But more so, your manly stance and inviting smile that makes you attractive to me. Your energy jumps through my computer screen and captures my attention. Strength, courage, kindness, compassion are oozing through the pixels.

I am searching for you, looking for you with patience, using my heart as a compass. I have traveled to the ends of the world, and laid out many miles of “I love you.” Is your heart made of iron or gold?  I want to believe that not all jewels are fake. My intuition has taken up wings, and my gut is left to take a chance in your love. We’ve all tasted happiness and been disappointed. So have you healed your past wounds?

You are no ordinary man.  What I am looking for, I do not have within me, but here you are, the missing piece to my puzzle. I feel it has been written in the book of life that we take roots together. I can feel it now. Our thoughts are entangled.  A warm embrace and electricity is exchanged between our hearts. You are the “one,” just a click away. - Sophia Stavron   Photo by Maddox Price Fall 2013 | The Windmill | 11


Quality Enhancement Plan What is your favorite book? The Quality Enhancement Plan, developed by employees and students, has two main objectives: improving reading skills and improving engagement related to reading.

DJangoran E. Famie

Dr. Thom Chesney

Student/Finance Major

Brookhaven College President

Book: “In the Sea There Are Crocodiles” by Fabio Geda

Book: “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love” by Raymond Carver

“This is my fourth book I have read in English. I like it because it is based on a real story, and the main character is a very strong boy who left Afghanistan to make it to Italy. If I was a boy of his age, I would not be able to do that.”

“This book was very informative when I was becoming a writer. It has a style I like to emulate, which is very dialogue-driven. Contemporary styles are typically what I write and mostly what I read.”

Thelma Martinez

Jessica Beavers

Student/dance

Circulation Assistant

Book: “Breaking Dawn” by Stephanie Meyer

Book: “Love in the Time of Cholera” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

“I am into the whole sci-fi and fantasy world. I am a really big romantic, so I am into the love story. I like this book because it really wraps up the series.”

“It was one of those books I had to read in high school, and he [Garcia] just writes so beautifully, it captivates you. It is one of those books I like to read just for fun.”

Antonio Alcala

Khadija lateef

Brookhaven Police Officer

student/automotive technology

Book: The Bible King James Version “My wife was always a Christian, and I had a relationship with Him, but it was 1989 when I really accepted Jesus Christ into my life.”

12 | Fall 2013 | The Windmill

Book: “Top Gear 100 Maddest Cars” by BBC Books “I like it because it has amazing cars. I love cars. They are my passion. I read it when I am stressed out or bored.”

Content provided by Mary Catherine


Campus Windmill Vol. 1 Cover 1