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Go toScrolling online to view more artwork: Artists’ View Ceramics Coffee House Drawing & Painting Photography PUNCH Writing

Kellie Colgain, digital photograph

Scroll Members Tori Buchanan Ellie Currie Kerry de Leon Drue Foster Hadley Gouldman Yasmeen Haider Elizabeth Harris Justine Hayward

Aleja HertzlerMcCain Caroline McDonald Claire Moore Rupa Nallamothu Ashley Nobi Adia Robinson Alaina Scallan Keara Scallan

Beverly Sihsobhon Shea Sion Maddie Slack Alice Sprinkle Victoria Thede Maha Tiimob Zainab Wurie Pam Zhang

Philosophy Scroll features writings by students of the Holton-Arms School. Many pieces come from classroom assignments across grades 8-12; others come from writing assignments at Scroll Club meetings. In making final selections for the magazine, the editorial staff looks for original, powerful, insightful work as well as a range of genres. They choose artwork that exemplifies the best work of the artists and that also speaks to the ideas or images of the written pieces.

Sydney Poretsky, earthenware

Mission Statement The mission of the Holton-Arms School is to cultivate the unique potential of young women through the “education not only of the mind, but of the soul and spirit.”

Front & back covers: Marissa Michaels, digital photographs


Volume LX Editors-in-Chief Adia Robinson • Keara Scallan

Club Presidents Kerry de Leon • Elizabeth Harris

Assistant Editors Hadley Gouldman • Claire Moore Rupa Nallamothu • Aleja Hertzler-McCain


Lindsay Covington, earthenware

Ms. Melinda Salata

The Holton-Arms School 7303 River Road • Bethesda, Maryland 20817

Authors Poetry

Twitter Verse


Adia Robinson . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

Maha Tiimob. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Claire Moore . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Elisabeth Bragale. . . . . . . . . . . 13

Hadley Gouldman. . . . . . . . . . 22

Emma Raynor . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Justine Hayward . . . . . . . . . . . 18

Alice Sprinkle. . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Clare Specht. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

Zoe Chen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

Kerry de Leon. . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Maya Sorini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

Keara Scallan . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

Adia Robinson . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Alice Sprinkle. . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

Melissa Wood. . . . . . . . . . . . . 41

Aleja Hertzler-McCain. . . . . . 23

Drue Foster . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25

Drue Foster. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Yasmeen Haider . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Mary Sheers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

Maddie Slack . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Zainab Wurie . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Noel Abdala-Arata. . . . . . . . . 35

Alice Sprinkle. . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

Beverly Sihsobhon . . . . . . . . . 23

Adia Robinson . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

Ellie Currie. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50

Rupa Nallamothu. . . . . . . . . . 23

Eryn Terry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40

Claire Moore. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52

Justine Hayward . . . . . . . . . . . 48

Sophie Gharai. . . . . . . . . . . . . 55

Tomorrow Poems

Beverly Sihsobhon . . . . . . . . . 54

Yasmin Alamdeen. . . . . . . . . . 56

Alice Sprinkle. . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

Lauren Ahn. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61

Erin Davis. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57

Maddie Slack . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Shea Sion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59

Beverly Sihsobhon . . . . . . . . . 28

Christina Stevens. . . . . . . . . . 60

Pam Zhang . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Elizabeth Harris. . . . . . . . . . . . 66

Elizabeth Harris. . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Keara Scallan . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29

Fiction Victoria Thede . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Victoria Thede . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Christina Hogg. . . . . . . . . . . . 46


Rupa Nallamothu. . . . . . . . . . 29

Artists Ceramics

Drawing & Painting


Sydney Poretsky . . . Inside front

Olivia Thomas . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

Marissa Michaels. . . . Front cover

Lindsay Covington. . . Title page

Lauryn Hildreth . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Kellie Colgain. . . . . Inside front

Sydney Poretsky . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

Alex Steelman . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

Keara Scallan . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Sally Huizinga. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Maddie Krips. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

Marissa Michaels. . . . . . . . . . . 13

Alizeh Afzal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

Maddie Krips. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

Tyler Cloyd . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

Megan Meyer . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

Lia Downing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Sky Howard. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

Sally Huizinga. . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

Marissa Michaels. . . . . . . . . . . 28

Imani Elam. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

Haley Butler . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

Tess Iannarone . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

Amy DeFranco. . . . . . . . . . . . 21

Anya Lilaoonwala. . . . . . . . . . 29

Carolina Wetzler. . . . . . . . . . . 39

Imani Elam . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Emma Raynor. . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

Maddie Krips. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41

Tyler Cloyd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

Anya Lilaoonwala. . . . . . . . . . 37

Tess Iannarone . . . . . . . . . . . . 43

Marissa Michaels. . . . . . . . . . . 31

Julia Reinsenfeld. . . . . . . . . . . 40

Lia Downing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

Amy DeFranco. . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Sydney Poretsky . . . . . . . . . . . 42

Margaux Villeneuve. . . . . . . . 46

Lauren Ahn . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Milan Booker . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

Lia Downing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51

Ashley Morefield. . . . . . . . . . . 47

Tola Oseni. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

Gillian Hutter. . . . . . . . . . . . . 52

Sarina Dey. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48

Maya Sorini. . . . . . . . . . . . . 58

Carolina Wetzler . . . . . . . . . . 53

Tyler Cloyd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57

Tori Buchanan. . . . . . . . . . . 55

Lauren Ahn. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61

Jamie Katz. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56

Lauren Ahn. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62

Tess Iannarone. . . . . . . . . . . 60

Lauren Ahn. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63 Lauren Ahn. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 Ashley Holder. . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Emma Kindig . . . . . . Inside back Marissa Michaels. . . . Back cover

Sydney Poretsky, earthenware


title of poem first para other text xxx

~ author


These Hands They say I’ve got old hands. And I guess they are ugly wrinkly things, with ashy knuckles and dirt-caked nails. My hands probably need some lotion, and have as many lines as notebook paper, But that’s all right with me.

Olivia Thomas, chalk pastel on paper

You see, these hands are the reason I live. They’re page turners, tea-mug holders. They’re nappy hair tamers, defense mechanisms, masters of applause. These hands are music makers, my fingers little piano hammers. And when one of these hands holds a pen, my whole soul flows through it, gets scribbled out onto waiting pages. Everything that I am and everything I will be runs through these hands.

~ Adia Robinson Hear the author read her work...


title of story author

f Sally Huizinga, earthenware

irst para other text

Butterflies Claire Moore


wish I could go back. Back to those days when I had no cares, no need for worry. Back when everything was as simple as “Daddy, where are we going next?” I’m four years old, small and energetic, my little legs pumping as I run across the stretch of grass that seems to go on forever. Daddy’s close behind me, walking hand-in-hand with my baby sister. Butterflies swarm around us as we stand on the hill, white and yellow blurring our vision. But I love it here. This is the Big Field. My daddy takes us here almost every Saturday. We go to the library and then end up here. At the library, Daddy takes us to the bookstore, where we get to choose books to keep! I always get a lot of books because I like to read. Along


with our picture books, Daddy gets books and sometimes movies for himself. His books are much bigger than ours. The Big Field is in fact very big. I ignore the sounds of the city: the hum of car engines, the shouting of kids, the smell of gasoline. I don’t even see the apartment buildings on three sides of the field and the road on the other. I am perfectly content here. The wind rushes past my face while the startling blue sky winks down at me. I allow the crisp smell of grass to overcome the gasoline as I gaze over my kingdom. The rolling hills of green as far as the eye can see are one of our favorite places to play. I begin my descent. I run a little ways, then look back at my sister. I run back and take her hand. We

run down the big hill hand in hand, laughing. We Mommy has our cheese sandwiches waiting at our stop when we get to some soft, flat ground. little wooden table at home. “Daddy, I wanna do a cartwheel!” I yell excitedly. It’s time to leave. I’ll soon see the butterflies He smiles and gives me permission. I do several again. My fluttering friends will wait for me and greet cartwheels, then call my sister over and try to teach me when I return. Besides, there’s a butterfly bush her how. outside our apartment building; I’ll see them even “Kristen, you go like this.” I demonstrate the as I walk in. But before we leave, we turn around to movement. chase the butterflies once more. “Like what, Cware?” she asks me, a pudgy finger I want to go back. Back to those days. But in her mouth. reality rears its ugly head. It takes her a while, Someone got shot near my but she gets it eventuapartment building and we ally. Before long, all of us, leave. We don’t go back including my stoic father, to the Big Field anymore. are cartwheeling all over As children, we found new the Big Field. When we places to play, but so far stop, we can’t halt the away from the butterflies wide smiles splitting our that I loved. My father got faces. in a car accident and hurt A yellow butterfly his back; he can cartwheel catches my eye—one with us no more. My sweet of the hundreds flutterlittle sister, who once Lauryn Hildreth, oil pastel on paper tucked her hand in mine ing about the field. I get up and run after it, my as we barreled through a chubby feet padding on the grass as I give chase. sea of green and called me Cware, now shakes off Soon, my sister follows my lead and chases me chasfamilial shows of affection. Where there was once ing the butterflies. Laughing, Daddy chases us all, his only carefree play, worry and stress reign. Sometimes long legs bounding, nearly catching a butterfly in his as we drive past where we used to live, we pass the efforts to get to us. The birds chirp around me as the Big Field. As I look through the window, I see myself pretty things fill my vision. I love them. We run for at four years old, chasing butterflies with my family. who knows how long, and we’re tired now. We sit on I wish I could go back. But I can’t. I am no longer the emerald grass to catch our breaths. Maybe Daddy young with no responsibilities. I want to go back, but will buy us a Slurpee or some ice cream. Surely the butterflies are all gone.


My Real-Life Super Hero Emma Raynor


ang on a second kids,” my mom whimpers as aisle with Bradley until he stops to go back to my my brother and I bounce in and out of our mom. I figure that if Brad is going back, I probably seats, eager to get off the airplane. We’d stayed in should too, but I just wait until they catch up to Namibia all the way until the Fourth of July this year. me. Eventually we exit the plane and make our way It was great. We got to stay for the embassy picnic into a wide, empty corridor. All I could see for miles and play softball! I even hit a is grey, but I recognize it as homerun. Well, sort of. The soon as I get there. This is the bat swung out of my hands, tunnel to the magical place. but it hit the ball in midair When I get to the end, I will so Daddy said it counted. No finally be there: Johannesburg one could catch me as I raced International Airport. I always around the bases. I was so fast. remember being very happy Now we have finally landed in that airport. Colors from in South Africa, so we are traditional African gowns are almost home to America for everywhere in sight, and I can the rest of the summer! hear people speaking words in Mom looks funny today. languages I didn’t even know She is really pale and she existed. Usually I see all of doesn’t want to move very this the minute we step off the fast. As soon as she stood up plane, but since we have been to get off the plane, she sat so slow in getting off, we’re right back down again. I don’t the only ones there now. understand why she wouldn’t Soon, though, I can’t want to leave as soon as poscontain my excitement any Keara Scallan, digital photograph sible. I love airplanes, but I longer. The end of the hallway want to get home. She claims it is because she “didn’t is in sight, and I have to get there. I prance ahead feel like fighting her way into the aisle.” I don’t know of my mother and brother. I feel like a ballerina, why she would have to fight, but I let it go. floating on air. I do a spin move here, then leap to Finally, the last of the stragglers make their way my left for another spin. I look behind me to see my off the plane, and it’s my turn. I prance down the mom and Brad laughing at me. I giggle. It’s nice to


see Mom smiling. Then suddenly, BOOM! I stumble backwards and look up into the eyes of the giant I have just run into. I panic at first. I’m always very shy around strangers, but the smile on his face assures me that I’m going to be ok. His skin is a smooth dark color that looks almost like it’s soft, and little grey curls fill his head. He’s with a woman, who I don’t recognize either, but she looks nice too. Soon, I hear footsteps running behind me, and my mom’s fingers interlock with mine as she begins apologizing to this stranger. “I’m so, so sorry! She usually prefers dancing to walking and never looks where she’s going,” my mom blurts out. She sounds frantic, but I can tell she’s trying to act calm. I don’t know why she’s freaking out so much–I run into people all the time! “That’s quite all right—she’s very cute,” the man responds as he pats me on my head. Normally I’d be upset that he’s flattening my curls, but something in his voice calms me. He’s very nice, so I let it go this time. “Thank you! Have a safe trip!” my mom finishes as she drags my brother and me away from the couple. “Kids, you just met a real-life super hero.” “But he wasn’t wearing a cape!” I interject. “Yeah, and he didn’t have any weapons!” my brother adds. “Trust me,” my mom assures us, “this man has done more to save the

world than Batman or Superman ever could.” Her sickness must be making her talk crazy, so I just stay quiet. Finally, we get to the end of the hallway, and the airport is in sight. My mom makes me hold her hand so I don’t run into anyone else, but I drag her forward. I burst through the doors and. . . nothing. It’s so late that no one’s there any more, and all the stores, except for a select few book stores, are closed. I’m devastated as my mom takes Brad and me to one of the bookstores to buy a magazine. She knows we think these stores are boring, so she lets us stay outside while she watches us from inside the store. When she comes out, we head to our terminal to wait for our next flight. We find three seats together, which isn’t hard considering the small number of people in the airport, and sit down. My mom opens her magazine, and her face lights up. “What is it, Mommy?” I ask. “See, I told you!” she replies as she shows us an article in the magazine. I see a picture of the man I’d just run into, but he’s not with the woman I saw him with; instead he’s with Oprah! My mom reads the article title out loud, “Nelson Mandela and Oprah Meet in South Africa.” “Wow!” I squeal, “if he knows Oprah, then he must be famous!”

Alizeh Afzal, stoneware


Road Kill Clare Specht


Next, I take a more positive approach. I tell he gun goes off, and my legs begin their automyself how good my butt will look after all of these matic turnover. I’m not thinking, just trying hills, and the faster I run, the faster I get to that nap not to trip on the feet of hundreds of other runners I’ve been waiting for since I woke up. Of course, I pulling me forward to the first turn. We round the am a Holton girl, so that nap will probably never corner, and the mob thins out into a line. I’m despercome. Unfortunately, during the time I spent cursing ately trying to keep up with the girls in front, but I out the hill, a girl managed to pass me. Road kill: can’t run this fast for long without hyperventilating. 0. When I get to the top, Once I’ve settled into a I am so done with this pace I think I can maincourse, but, as always, tain for 3.1 miles, I begin there’s more. I pick up the to feel the pain. Despite pace again and let gravonly suffering from huge ity pull me down the next blisters and bleeding hill. Because I’m one of toes, I can’t get through a the few girls who don’t run without my muscles mind falling on their faces, lighting on fire. I know I never hold back on a the only way through this downhill and manage to race is to distract myself, pass people. Road kill: 2. so I begin to look for I can finally see the potential road kill. finish line. I begin to One girl seems to be sprint because I know this dying off already, so I derace will finally be over. A cide to chase her down. Madeira coach yells at his Road kill: 1. Then, I spot runner to beat me, which my next obstacle – the pisses me off. Although I steepest hill I think I’ve sound asthmatic and some ever seen. As I start to of the football players are charge up it, I begin cursdefinitely judging me being it out in my mind. Alex Steelman, chalk pastel on paper cause I look and sound like This method doesn’t pay I’m about to croak, I run off, for it feels like I’m away from her and pick up a couple more girls along running in place. I feel like I might fall over and die the way. Suckers! Road kill: 5. right there.


Race Day I wake to a sudden ring, ring, ring. My muscles still aching from the day before. Silence leaves me with my thoughts of what the day will bring; Hopes that I will earn my wings and soar. Classes flash by at an Olympic pace. Clad in all black, I throw on my suit. Suddenly I’m prepping for a 200 meter race; Coach’s excitement seems about to uproot. Beep goes the timer as the cold water devours me. Three strokes, one breath; down the lane I go. I look up and Coach’s face is all I can see. Fast flip-turn, tight stream line, I mustn’t let my pain show. As I come into the flags, the water clears from my ears, And I can hear my team’s loud victorious cheers.

Marissa Michaels, digital photograph

~Elisabeth Bragale


Ambition Maya Sorini


walk over the plaster dust and into the family room. It’s dark as usual, but the waffle iron resting on the granite bar catches my eye. We don’t have anywhere to cook except the living room, so there’s been a lot of toast lately. “Mom?” I call out. “Shh! Come on, Maya! Your brother is trying to sleep. He got up to 105° at the hospital today.” Through the dusky room I see his shirtless frame curled up on the navy leather couch. I start walking over, but something stops me. “I’m going to go do homework,” I say, about to make my way through the construction zone that is our kitchen. Mom doesn’t acknowledge me as she brandishes the thermometer towards Bryson’s mouth.


As I’m going back through the dusty foyer, I hear vomit hit the bucket next to my brother. I close my eyes and stop for a moment. “Do you feel better now?” Mom murmurs. Bryson coughs some incoherent reply. He’s probably shivering again; he only throws up when it’s over 103.5°. I jog up the wooden stairs, through our halfbaked kitchen. The plastic covering the hole in the wall flaps wildly. My sisters, Skyler and Rylinn, have already hidden themselves away like baby starlings. As if I should be so lucky. Tyler Cloyd, film photograph I attempt to start my homework, but instead I weep silently. Geometry feels pointless as I google Kawasaki’s disease. Mom emailed me during Bryson’s echocardiogram that the condition might explain his fevers.

My chemistry homework is bland like saltine crackers and purple fever medicine. I turn the lights down in my room and curl up in front of Grey’s Anatomy. “Doctor Grey, what is going on with my baby?” Yeah, Doctor Grey. What’s going on? I watch the drama unravel until I’m gone from my world. My room is a cavern, and I feel like one of those little cave fish without eyes who don’t even know they’re blind. My door creaks open without a knock. Pale streaks of light illuminate Bryson’s puffy, sallow face. “Sweetie, what’s wrong?” He makes that infantile sound in the back of his throat that means he’s secretly crying. I open up my blanket and he comes under. My body forms a warm spoon around him while I feel him sob. His chest is burning under my arm. Mom would kill me if she knew I had blankets on him… “Bryson, is everything okay?” “Maya,” he creaks like old furniture. We’re doing that cry sweating thing where your whole body ends up vaguely wet, like your face. “Are you going to come to the

hospital for my surgery?” “Of course. If you want me to–,” I don’t let any surprise leak into my voice. Mom told me he was embarrassed and that he wouldn’t want me to know about it. I start holding everything in with my abs. He’s the one who’s allowed to cry. I need to keep it together. “No. I was just wondering if you would be there when I wake up.” “I can get out of school. It’s no problem. I’ll be with Mom when it’s over. You’ll feel like you had a really nice nap,” I choke. I picture him sleeping. Mom and I have been watching him while he sleeps a lot lately. “No. I just…” He’s starting to get up now. His tears puddle on my pillow but his face looks clear. “Maya?” I sit up to see him better. There’s an unfamiliar frailty in his eyes. “Maya, next time I have surgery…” His voice is quiet and bashful. “Will you promise to be my doctor?” “Always, Bryson. Always.”

Sky Howard, digital photograph


The Dare Alice Sprinkle


t was 11:30 – my favorite time of day. In my first and second grade class, it was the beginning of our playtime before recess. My friend Fiona and I raced to grab the only deck of cards so we could play Go Fish. Three eager girls claimed the “Pretty, Pretty Princess” game, only upsetting two more girls who whined that it was their turn that day. All the boys started working on the jumbo dinosaur jigsaw puzzle, except for a boy named Nate, who found more amusement in poking our class turtle, Shelley, on the head. Not long after we’d started playing, the second graders took over. I hated how we had mixed classes. The second graders were meanies. They took charge of the jigsaw puzzle, stole the pink clip-on earrings from “Pretty, Pretty Princess,” and poked at the turtle with Nate. Poor Shelley. Thank goodness they thought Go Fish was totally kindergarten. All of a sudden, I felt a tap on my shoulder. Please don’t be a second grader, I pleaded silently. I turned around. It was Michael, my best friend from kindergarten. Only no one knew he was still my best friend – boys were gross. He knelt


down on the dingy green carpet beside me. “Can I play?” he begged with his hazel puppy eyes. His blond bowl cut reached the tips of his eyelashes. “Why don’t you go play with the boys?” Fiona asked. She impatiently blinked her eyes – one green and one amber – as she waited for his answer. “The second graders told me I couldn’t play anymore. They said I can’t be in their puzzle club!” Michael pouted. “Why not?” I asked. “I don’t know. Can I play Go Fish?” “Sure, Mike, whatever,” I gave him some cards. “Thanks,” he beamed. “Got any twos?” “Go fish,” I sighed. “Any eights?” “Hey, Michael!” We dropped our cards and turned around. Imani Elam, digital photograph Gulp. It was Emma and her friend Melanie – the worst of the second grade girls. Emma’s icy blue eyes glared at Michael. “Why are you playing with her?” she demanded, pointing at me. She cocked her head to the side, her

brunette pigtails bouncing with it. Michael looked terrified. “Because she’s my friend,” he responded innocently. I turned bright red, redder than Emma’s nail polish. “If you like her so much, why don’t you kiss her?” Emma’s voice grew louder with every word. “Yeah, kiss her!” Melanie chimed in. Michael looked stunned. He turned to me. “No way,” I refused. “I don’t want to get pregnant.” “Wow, is that really how babies are made?” Fiona asked. “Duh, everyone knows that,” Melanie scoffed. “I am not kissing her,” Michael insisted. “Oh yeah?” Emma’s eyes flickered. “I double-Ddog-dare you to kiss her!” Fiona gasped. “Now you’ve gotta do it,” she said, wide-eyed. She was right. Every first grader knows that when a second grader double-D-dog-dares you to do something, you have to do it or else. But this was crazy. I was so not kissing a boy. But it was too late. Michael’s eyes were scrunched closed. He stuck his lips out as he leaned in towards me. I scooted back on the rough carpeting until my back hit a bookshelf and an old copy of Frog and Toad Are Friends fell out. I was doomed. Before I could stop him, Michael’s lips crashed into mine. It felt squishy and tasted like the barbecue-flavored potato chips he’d eaten for snack. A few seconds later, he yanked his lips away. I gasped for breath and wiped my mouth with the back of my hand. I couldn’t believe what I had done.

“Michael and Alice kissed!” Nate shouted from behind Shelley’s tank. The classroom erupted. “Ew! She has cooties!” “Michael has a girlfriend!” “Alice and Michael, sittin’ in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-” “ENOUGH!” The room fell silent. Our teacher, Ms. Libby, stood with her hands on her hips, her beady eyes scanning the room. Her long brown hair swished as she walked up to Michael and me. She towered over us like a giant. She pointed to me and then to Michael. “You two!” she barked. “To the corner!” Without another word, Michael and I got up and trudged to the dreaded “time-out” table in the back of the classroom. I couldn’t comprehend whether I was angry at Emma or upset for getting in trouble or sick from the cooties. I watched as our classmates excitedly drew “no kissing allowed” signs and stuck them all over the walls. Ms. Libby just sat at her big, clunky computer, oblivious to what was going on. “I’m sorry I did that,” Michael said quietly. “I forgive you,” I sighed. “You really had no choice.” We watched as the signs on the wall multiplied. I kicked my feet against the floor, making my new sneakers light up nonstop. I fidgeted with my pink shirt sleeves. I wanted to go rip all the signs off the wall and throw them away. I was beyond mortified. Michael sensed my aggravation. “What do we do now?” he asked. “We wait until we’re second graders,” I grinned. “Then we get revenge.”


Maddie Krips, watercolor on paper



I’ve sat in this same chair every time it goes this way wanting hoping needing you to be OK cycling through emotions tears welling up natural disaster

like tsunamis in oceans I know none of my attempts will work helping you is like putting wet sand through a sieve and I feel the same way as you try to live pensive

~Justine Hayward

The Way Things Are Kings die, kingdoms topple, Mothers die, children cry, Grooms die, brides weep, Hearts break, tears fall.

Maddie Krips, black and white chalk on paper

Kingdoms without kings, Ashes to ashes, Fall apart and burn, Burn in the moonlight, Burn under the sun, Burn, burn, until you are left with nothing but human bone.

Hearts break. He cries, She weeps, They both grieve, They grieve for what was, They grieve for what could have been, They grieve until they find a better one. They smile, they laugh, but inside, they still cry, Their feelings never truly did collide.

~Zoe Chen

Children without mothers, Wailing in their tears, Cry and cry, The pain is clear. Cry until you can no longer cry, Then sleep, engulfed by grief. Brides without grooms, Not even wedded,  They cry and weep, Not even a widow, Nothing to remember him by, Weep, weep, weep because he died.


How to Forgive, Forget Victoria Thede


n impossibly heavy stone wall stands bethe word “Amicus” etched upon its handle. Be sure fore you, last moved by the likes of to catch it and wield it with care. Then the knights and kings. Your royal blood walls will separate from the path you battles outside, clawing and scraping walk on so that you are running bloody nails against the ancient along a bridge. Tread with care, rock. Eyes reflecting the flamfor below are icy dragons aiming projectiles the queen’s ing freezing arrows at your launching at her bishop, feet. If your toes begin to you have just one option. ice over, do not worry, You grasp the brass for other warriors have handle and pull. The suffered far worse. You wall glides shut, as if can, however, avoid on wheels. You gasp the glowing, blue and collapse upon the vines that seep from ground, arms and legs the walls by slicing limp, heart weak. Then them with your sword. victory pours through Be wary, for slow reflexes your veins, and you feel will let them wrap around strong again. But now, your heart and give you an stunning chills will shock your eternal chill. bones. Cheeks flush and retinas pale. If you survive, you will now Megan Meyer, earthenware What have you done? You stand reach the end of the cavern. The perplexed, paralyzed, abandoned. night sky will fill your mind, but do Here is how to reach Forgive. Go down the pasnot allow the darkness to make you ignorant. Always sage on the right. The screaming echoes off the dark retain your clarity; before you stands an enormous walls, and blazing torches barely light the way. The Banyan tree, trunks intertwining to form a gargantuscent of moss should fill your nose, at which point an, everlasting blaze. Embers drip to the ground, but request for a fairy godmother. Say a prayer and if if you reach into the flames, you should feel a glass you are chosen, a dagger will fall from the ceiling, surface. Pull it from the center of the fire without


getting burned, and you will see a bottle filled with lava. Unscrew the cork and swallow; if the moon is full so that the Eastern tides are high, you will feel energy surge through your body. Tear the locket from your neck and tie the bottle to the chain instead, then throw the old pendant into the tree’s flames. Now use your momentum to run down the path through the woods at your left. The tears will stream down your face as the old horizon shrinks in the distance, but don’t spend too much time wiping them aside. Witches with potions and small, smoking sticks call out from behind the dark trees, but do not stray. A bright cabin will be around the next corner. Above the entry hangs a sign reading, “Forgive.” Run up the steps and open the door, then shut it quickly behind you. Observe the sight and bask in the glory; before you spans an enormous ballroom. The floor

beneath your feet is comfortable Italian cobblestone, but a few paces forward will let your toes feel a soothing moss. The walls are a master collage of a million ancient and future maps, and the ceiling is a glorious night sky. Tall trees tower around the perimeter, lights twinkling from the branches and animals swinging in their prestige. A small beach splashes from a far corner, penguins waddling out of the surf and seagulls riding upon their shoulders. Yet glimmers of familiarity are too close for comfort, such as that young man in the corner or the scent of mother’s perfume wafting from the flowers. Scattered throughout the enormous hall, princesses and princes alike dance and sing to the tune of a new, beautiful melody. Introduce yourself and join them, and they will welcome you. Now, if only I could tell you how to get to Forget.

Amy DeFranco, digital photograph


Twitter Verse: Poems in 140 characters or less “You only know you love her when you let her go.” He pondered in his seat Thinking of nothing but deceit As he wept The loss.

@Maha Tiimob I don’t know what to write Kerry is counting characters We noticed Caroline’s hairs are white I still don’t know what to write

@Hadley Gouldman

Why must I Pour my heart Into one small space? I wish you’d listen To more than just this. You remind me of the Grinch. Your heart is 140 characters Too small.

@Alice Sprinkle

Flappy bird makes me mad I’m so bad at it, it’s sad All I wanna do is get my High score past 3 But I can’t so instead I’ll throw my phone at a Tree.

@Kerry de Leon Rush, rush, rush Work, work, work Deadline, deadline Time’s almost out There’s still work to be done Why?

@Adia Robinson


Imani Elam, digital photograph

Frozen now Thawing soon…maybe? Days, weeks, who can predict When we can break this ice and reveal your True beauty.

@Aleja Hertzler-McCain Lia Downing, black and white chalk on toned paper Yet another day begins With burdened backs and harsh winds. Yet another night ensues, With haunted minds and indigo blues.

@Yasmeen Haider

Why do they make unsweetened tea? I mean iced tea. It’s just water with a hint of tea leaves. So pointless. I might as well drink water. Nope.

@Beverly Sihsobhon

I don’t know what to write about Sometimes I like to doodle I’m not very good at it but I try I just scribble with my eyes close And hope to find a picture inside

@Zainab Wurie

#Power. Those were the first words I heard last night as I watched the Olympics next to my dog. Two twenty-something figure skaters were living it up in the Village, like everyone wishes they could. Like I wish I could.

@Rupa Nallamothu



Caught in the Act Drue Foster


Tyler Cloyd, digital photograph

s a child, I always followed my sister around. Looking back on it, I can no longer understand what was so fascinating about her that made me want to mimic her every action. When Aly got a new Barbie doll, I would ask my mom to buy the same exact one. When my mom would style Aly’s hair a certain way, I begged my mom to use the same color barrettes in my hair as well. As the older sibling, Aly was always annoyed at my presence and hated how I always wanted to wear the same clothes and hairstyles, play with the same dolls, and do everything she did. I never understood her frustration, but I obeyed her wishes to leave her alone and played by myself. Then it dawned on me – Aly was just the next room over. She couldn’t ignore me forever. I devised a foolproof plan to ultimately make her want to play with me again. Aly always left her door open just a little bit. Using the minuscule crack, I could spy on what she was doing. “But what if she catches you spying on her?” you might ask. Well, thanks to the countless games of tag, I could easily sprint back to my room without her catching me in a matter of seconds. I would already have my dolls ready or one

of my computer games up as if I had been playing it the entire time. Then, she would return to her room and forget about the bogus accusation of me spying on her. My plan worked so well; I never got caught. But I noticed that Aly would watch more and more TV downstairs in the living room, leaving her room vacant more often. One day, I began my daily routine of cracking the door wide enough for me to spy, but her room was silent. I slowly inched into her room, carefully taking each step so no one would hear me. She wasn’t there. Her pink room full of the cutest stuffed animals, flawless dolls, and beautiful jewelry I wished were mine intrigued me. I examined a particularly cute pair of earrings I couldn’t take my eyes off of; the glimmer of the sun made the jewels even more irresistible. I always wanted to wear earrings, but I was too scared to ever put them in my ear because of their sharp ends. My mother always had to hold me down to put on the only pair of earrings I owned – tiny gold hoops. But those pretty silver gems were calling my name. What was the big deal? She never wore these earrings anyways. I suddenly heard a creak of the steps and my eyes widened. Slipping the earrings in my


pocket, I proceeded to my room as I pretended that I was in the bedroom, next to Aly’s room. Aly gave me a quizzical look when she reached the top step. “You weren’t in my room, were you?” she questioned. “No,” I shook my head innocently. She focused her hazel eyes on my chocolate ones; her glare ceased, and she shrugged her shoulders as she walked into her room. I sighed in relief and closed my bedroom door. I hid the earrings in the secret compartment of my jewelry box, then continued to improve my plan of getting into my sister’s room. For the next few weeks, I proceeded to peruse Aly’s belongings when she went on play dates or watched television. The more she was out of her room, the more tiny objects I began to take without her noticing, but I was running out of hiding places. I ended up stashing the items underneath my bed. Perfect. No one ever checked under my bed. Eventually, it got to the point where I was running out of things to take from Aly and use them exactly as she did. Her videogames, clothing, doll accessories, and


jewelry were beginning to lose their value to me. I ultimately decided to return everything back on my own. Gathering the treasures into a giant pile in the center of my room, I sighed. I decided to split everything up by category – dolls, jewelry, clothes, and miscellaneous. That way, I could only enter her room four times and put everything back in their respective places. I completed the task thoroughly and began to gather the first pile that overflowed from my skinny arms. Suddenly, the door burst open with Aly standing dead center in the doorway. I dropped the contents in my hands as her eyes widened. She walked over to the pile I had dropped and sighed. “I knew I was missing this videogame! And I was wondering where my favorite outfit for Barbie was! I thought I was going crazy!” Aly examined her lost toys. I stared at her, waiting for her to shove or push me. “So… you’re not mad?” I sheepishly asked. “I felt bad about taking everything so I wanted to return them, even though you barely use anything I took. I’m sorry Aly, please don’t hit me,” I winced at the potential pain that would soon be inflicted on my body. She chuckled. “I’m not mad, loser. Just don’t take my stuff anymore. We can play together… sometimes. And from now on, I’m going to take whatever I want, whenever I want from you.” “But you do that anyway!” I whined and stomped my feet as hard as I could.

Sally Huizinga, earthenware

Tomorrow. 6:15 A.M. My mother hollering. Blurry eyes put devil horns on her head. I don’t want to wake up.

Tomorrow. 6:15 P.M. Practicing. Scales, etudes, concertos. Playing until my callused fingertips sting. Tomorrow. 11:00 P.M. My mom comes upstairs She tells me to go to bed. Ha. She wishes. Tomorrow. Midnight. My cat slinks into my bedroom. Leaps onto my bed, rolls over, Curls up next to me Cat hair everywhere.

Tomorrow. 4:00 P.M. Sleepy feet drag my heavy backpack Down too many flights of stairs. Time to go home.

Tomorrow. 2 A.M. Technically not tomorrow. Anyway, still tomorrow for me. Hot shower, sleepy eyes.

Tomorrow. 5:15 P.M. We bounce into the driveway, finally. I jolt awake, rub my eyes, Get out of the car.

Tomorrow. 2:30 A.M. Going to bed. Soon to be yesterday.

~Alice Sprinkle


Haley Butler, earthenware

• songs in the key of time

Tomorrow. 8:15 A.M. Calculus. Numbers, functions, derivatives. I promise I’ll never need it.

tomorrow poems

Tomorrow. 5:20 A.M. Don Juan blasts in my ear. Ugh. Turn it off. Slip back into warm sleep.


tomorrow Dear Tomorrow, I never seem to find you. I know where you are, though. 24 hours, 1,400 minutes, way too many seconds, you always seem so far away. A day is always too long.

~Maddie Slack

Today is the day when I plan my tomorrow. I plan to shove all responsibilities for some other time. Let tomorrow be the day of work and sorrow. But today, let me be forced to make a rhyme. Today I can lie around, having meaningless qualms with myself. Tomorrow I will battle ignorance and strengthen my brain. In this hour I may sit and ignore my bookshelf. In 24 hours, I might go for a run in the rain. Today I can decide on my actions and fate, While tomorrow is a variable waiting to be solved.

~Pam Zhang The clock ticks. 11:59 P.M. The seconds slip by. It is today. Tomorrow approaches. 12:00 A.M. It is tomorrow. It is today. That minute was Yesterday. Darkened room. Thick sheets. Anticipation For the new day hovers in dreams. But the clock is ticking down. 12:01 A.M., 12:02 A.M., 12:03 A.M. Will it be too late? Time’s Running out. Because tomorrow Has already passed onto the next.

~Beverly Sihsobhon

Marissa Michaels, oil on canvas




But of course, I have time for sitting and waiting and wondering, But of course,

How is it that I find myself counting down endless tomorrows? Waiting for the seconds, the minutes, the hours to pass, But I’m always complaining of a lack of time? How is it that I cherish nothing more than a clean slate, a new day. A tomorrow.

Tomorrow is Annie singing on a windowsill, The first morning without a 5 am alarm, And the dream of people who forget Their dreams of today. Tomorrow is yesterday and today. The future that voices chase in their dreams. The dream writers chase with their pens. It is an illusion of time and order, A veil we need to rip from our eyes In order to see.

~Keara Scallan

But I can only talk about the past. How is it that our fixation on the future and science And discovery and climate change, Has only increased our obsession with right now’s and yolo’s And treating each day like it’s your last? I believe in 6 seconds of insane courage, I do, But the threat of tomorrow always hovers. ~Elizabeth Harris

Tomorrow is snowflakes dancing on the window, Comforting me while I struggle Through blizzards, school, and life. Tomorrow is the sunshine peeking through The clouds Floating in the sky after a blizzard, Showing me hope As I read a chemistry textbook, Attempting to fulfill my dreams. The cloud I’m in will break apart Because tomorrow is spring.



Too deep Too intellectual for me right now Too much pounding in my head of things That needed to be done yesterday It seems to me that I no longer even have time To contemplate tomorrow

Today is tomorrow, yesterday. The only rhyme I can think of is bastardy Which leads me back to “yesterday”. Seuss wrote loops in groups of words That fell into soups Until my head spun from the swoops of Color and sound.

~Rupa Nallamothu

Anya Lilaoonwala, stoneware


Bueller? I snap my gum Shirley Wakowski’s hair curls despite projectile words And shifting, restless Heat. Bueller? Heads tilt, Eyes glaze His cheek stuck To the desk. A shiny ribbon of drool Clinging to the corner Of his open mouth. Bueller. A fly buzzing into the light Washing over faces Drawn with cartoon eyes And grotesques Slumped in chairs Mouths wide, eyes shut The droning roll and call Counting down Seconds, Days, Years. Bueller!

~Keara Scallan


Marissa Michaels, digital photograph

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off


Ninja v. Older Sister Mary Sheers


o, give it back!” “It’s mine! I’m older!” “That’s not fair! You have your own!” “This is my own!” I stand up and pout. How dare she? Elly sits on the floor, surrounded by toys, right to the left of the silly putty stain on the floor. I tighten my fists. I quickly reach down to grab the yellow, plastic t-ball bat lying next to us on the playroom floor. My parents originally bought this bat for us to practice baseball, but two dents later we realized the bat was too flimsy to withstand hitting a ball. My parents, being hoarders, decided to keep the bat, knowing it could barely be used to hurt others. So, the yellow bat hung around the floor of the playroom. “Stop it, idiot!” Elly yells as I pick up the bat. “Don’t call me that! That’s mean! I have a bat,” I reply, ready to fight or run. Unfazed, Elly grabs a solid wooden block larger than her hand. Armed with sharp corners, she stares me down. In unison we scream for our parents. “Mom! Elly’s threatening me with the wooden block that’s sharp. Tell her to stop. It’s not fair! HELP!” “Mary’s holding a bat. She stole my toy. She’s trying to hit me in the head!” Tension rises and we hold our stances. She can’t stand my screams for help. Up goes the wooden block flying toward my head, probably with less speed than I remember it having.


Emma Raynor, earthenware

I watched too many Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles episodes growing up. My first instinct is to close my eyes, turn my head away, hold the bat in front of my body, and swing it in a circle as fast as I can. I create an imaginary force field by spinning this thin bat. As the block hurtles toward me, to both mine and Elly’s surprise, the block bounces off my bat. My sister and I drop the items and stare in awe. The scarcity of resources is no longer part of our focus. We are entranced by my new superpower. “Whoa!” I scream. “That was so cool!” Elly replies. “I’m a ninja!” “Can I? Can I?” “Yeah, just hold the bat like this and turn it really fast. I’ll throw the block.” I love being the teacher. We adjust to the new positions and take turns, tossing blocks at each other. As we struggle to recreate the moment, my parents walk in. They stare, confused, because our fight was so quickly replaced by laughing as we throw blocks at each other. “So close!” I squeal. “Your turn, do you want me to throw it higher?” Elly asks. To this day, I don’t know what toy we were fighting about. But whatever it was, our ninja training was more important. Despite all the toys we could fight about and the constant disagreements between us, my sister and I could always support each other once we found a common goal.



The Diary of an Ellis Island Immigrant Noel Abdala-Arata


y classmates and I are lined up outside my school’s All Purpose Room waiting for our teacher to let us in. I bounce up and down, feeling a little queasy but jittery at the same time. My sneakers squeak on the linoleum floor, and my pink headband slides back, messing up my hair. My teacher scolds some boys who are pushing each other and tugging at their stiff costumes. Today is Ellis Island Day, where the fourth graders from Cold Spring Elementary School recreate what immigrants from the 1900s experienced when they reached America. We’ve each been assigned a person with a set profile, and today we pretend to be them as we move from Passport Control to the Health Center to the Work Office, and finally to the Decision Desk, quite like people did years ago. I look at the sign around my friend’s neck. “Betsy, from Norway,” I read. “Yep!” says my friend with a grin, “I’m sure they’ll clear me during immigration. I can’t wait!” I stand on my tiptoes and try to peer in through the door to see what the cafeteria looks like, but my teacher calls for our attention. As she drones on about the rules, my mind wanders. I’ve been waiting for weeks for this day. In Social Studies we’ve spent a whole unit reading and looking at pictures of immigrants and their families. Even though it’s 2007, I can’t wait to be just like them, walking through the shining gates of Ellis Island into my new

Amy DeFranco, digital photograph


home, the United States. This was about to be the best day ever. My friend looks at my tag and giggles, “Olga, age 63, Eastern Europe, no family in America, whooping cough. Lucky you!” I frown. But I quickly shrug her off because today, nobody can dampen my spirits. Immigration will obviously accept me, and I will start a new, wonderful life in America. And anyways, my whooping cough was not all that bad, really. I could downplay it during my time on Ellis Island, and once I was through and in my new house in America, I could cough all I wanted. My teacher, Mrs. Cohen, stops talking and lets us through to begin our journey. Finally. I take a moment under the door frame. I gaze around the huge, bright cafeteria as it opens up and almost swallows my four-foot self whole. I skip forward although it’s rather hard in my costume. I’m wearing a rippedup shirt, an oversized brown sweater, a scarf draped around my neck, and I’m holding a tissue in one hand and my grandma’s cane in the other. The parents–immigration officers for the day–sit and chat behind long white tables around the cafeteria. I waddle over to Passport Control and hand the officer my papers. He reviews them and sternly says, “Everything’s all set. You can pass.” I squeal and zoom over to the next table a couple yards away, where two nurses sit. “Hello! I’m Olga!” I gush. The first nurse smiles at me while the other one, who’s reviewing my paper, frowns. “It says here that you have whooping cough,” she points out. “Oh right,” I reply. I cough into my arm, but only a soft cough, not like the racking cough that I prac-


ticed at home. I blow my nose softly. “I’m not that sick. I’m pretty sure I’ll get better really soon,” I explain. The nurses aren’t convinced, and to my dismay, put a “Failed” stamp under the health check-up part of my sheet. I fix my dull gray scarf and trudge over to the Work Office. The Health Center hadn’t gone all that well, so I am going to have to make a case for myself this time. Two officers review my papers. “What have we got here? An elderly, sick woman looking for a job?” says one. “Tell us, what’s your plan if you live here?” asks the other. “When I move here, I can cook for families and or teach,” I say, puffing my chest out. What a great idea, Noel, I think to myself, good job. “You have almost no education and speak little English. How do you plan to even get a job in the first place? You are far too old and too weak for hard work,” replies the officer. He looks pointedly at my outfit. I’m starting to think that the cane was not a good idea. He slams the “Failed” stamp onto my paper, and I cringe. But I’m determined to keep going. The last station was going to go much better; they’d see how nice and friendly I was, and they’d let me in. I ditch my cane, throwing it under a chair, and clutching my papers, I approach the last table. Here, the Admission Officer will decide if I got in or not. Turns out it’s Mrs. Anderson, one of my friend’s mom! It’s a small world after all! My fate rests completely in her hands. I give her my papers, and she says, “Hello, Noel!” “It’s Olga,” I correct.

please make an exception for me, that I deserve to live in America. I just can’t bear to go back to my country after I’ve made it so far here. As she opens her mouth to talk, she looks at something behind me. She seems to have changed her mind and starts to smile. “Well, I suppose we could use another old, sick woman. Welcome to America,” she says, and stamps my paper. My eyes widen and my jaw drops. I did it!!!! I immigrated!!! I, a frail, old lady, skipped over to the crowd of young men and women with robust bodies and able minds reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. I’m handed a little American flag, and I zoom over to my mom, who takes a picture of me. I knew today was going to be the best day ever. Fast forward to a month after that glorious day. My mom breaks the news to me: I got through because Mrs. Cohen, standing near my table, heard my frantic pleading and saw my distraught face. She hadn’t realized that kids would take the activity so seriously and frantically flapped her hands to Mrs. Anderson, who looked behind me and got the signal. That changed her mind in a jiffy. But really, I don’t mind much how Mrs. Cohen did it; I’m just glad that Olga was welcomed to America.

Anya Lilaoonwala, stoneware

“Right. Well, let’s see here. It seems like you failed two out of the three tests. I don’t think that you will contribute to American life much. I’m afraid I’m going to have to reject you, sweetie,” she says. REJECTED?! I couldn’t believe my ears. Is she actually going to send me back? No way. I am Olga. I traveled for weeks in a stuffy, creaky boat from Eastern Europe; I endured the long journey, and I had finally made it to Ellis Island, to the golden country. And I was about to get rejected? My hopes and dreams were crushed. I had worked so hard. What were my grandchildren going to say? I’m trying to escape a famine! I’ll die if I go back to my country! Worse yet, I might not even make it through the trip home!! Rejected?! My eyes water. I can’t get a single word out. The parent had moved on, completely unaware of my hopeless situation. She had just condemned me to imminent death, and there she was, holding her little “accepted” stamp and smiling at my classmate, a sturdy Russian man in his thirties. Suddenly, desperation takes over. I start pleading with Mrs. Anderson to let me in, that she


Squirrel! Adia Robinson


stood on my porch and gazed down at the mountainous stairs. The cascade of concrete leads to the outside world, friends, and grass. A six-inch jump separated each step. The black painted metal bar of a railing comes up to my head, so Mom insisted on holding my hand to guide me down the stairs. “You ready to go?” She said, towering above me. Thumb in mouth, I nodded in response. She clasped my other hand, and I jumped down the four little steps, then waddled across the flat concrete bordered by grass. Twenty-stairs to go. A gray-brown squirrel sat in the grass digging, its plume tail shooting into the air. I ripped my hand away from Mom, crouched down and stared at it. Two beady eyes snapped to mine. His little paws held an acorn. “SQUIRREL!” I cried and charged for the little guy. “Mommy! I’mmona catch the squirrel! Mommy, Mommy I’mmonna catch it! I’mmona catch it!” The squirrel took off scampering down the hill, and I raced down the stairs in pursuit. I leapt from


stair to stair, flying. I was going to catch that squirrel. Two steps to go. The squirrel sat blinking on the sidewalk, safe, he thought, from the deranged five-year-old. “Squirrelly!” I jumped but my feet never hit the next step. I was airborne, the Tess Iannarone, pen on paper squirrel in my sights, then BAM! Concrete scraped against my face, pulling my lip to my nose as my knees hit the sidewalk. “ADIA!” “WAHHAAHHH MO-WAHH.” Tears everywhere. I couldn’t see. Something was red. “ANTHONY!” “Should I get a Band-Aid?” Dad said from the doorway. “MOMMY!” Next thing I knew I was in the car, a wad of tissues pressed to my lip and the skin between my mouth and nose. At the doctor’s, a nurse in the bright yellow office jumped back when she saw me. “Oh my goodness, what happened to her?” “Well, you see what had happened was…”

She gently placed the mask over my nose and mouth and flipped on the machine. The mask filled with hazy medicine. Droplets of water clustered at the edges of the mask, making my skin clammy. I convinced Dad to read me a book while I waited for the medicine to do its job. Halfway through the story, a Band-Aid slid down my face and plopped at the bottom of the mask. “Daddy…” “‘Cows that type. Hens on strike! Whoever’—Yes ‘Dia? Oh!” He rushed off, promising Disney princess BandAids this time. Miserable, I glanced up. A brownishgray squirrel holding an acorn sat on the windowsill, almost smiling.

Carolina Wetzler, oil on canvas

“WAAAHHHH! MOMMY!” Nothing broke. The skin between my upper lip and nose had been scraped down to the bone. My voice shattered through three octaves when the previously smiling nurses dabbed at the spot with an alcohol swab. They covered it with a patchwork of Hello Kitty Band-Aids. My cold-handed, wrinkly-skinned doctor looked like a skeleton in a lab coat and did nothing to ease my pain. I already hated him because he had insisted on giving me allergy shots, no matter how loud I screamed. “You might want to take her to a specialist to see if she has a concussion or something,” he said. “Make sure you keep it clean and covered. Put Vitamin E on it to reduce the scarring.” “Sweetheart?” a nurse said as I fumed with tears streaming down my face. “You were so brave today! Would you like a lollipop?” I snatched it from her and mumbled a thank you. A lollipop, Ben and Jerry’s, and a McDonald’s hamburger later we were home. It hurt to suck my thumb, and my face stung so much I barely noticed the Band-Aids on my knees from where they scraped across the sidewalk. Mom prepared my Nebulizer, a large off-white rectangular box with a tube connected to a mask that gave me asthma medicine. “Do I have to, Mommy?” “Yes, Adia.”


Sitting on a Star Eryn Terry


y feet dangle in the nothingness below me, but somehow I am not afraid of falling. This seat is surprisingly comfortable. They teach us that stars are made of fire, but this one is more like a warmed seat in a brand new Cadillac. I caress the plush ground with my fingertips, and I feel the softness return kisses to my palms. My eyes bounce with amazement as I notice that my surroundings stretch for hundreds of miles into the vast darkness of the universe. I feel a raindrop on my cheek. At least, I think it is a raindrop. My eyes follow another as it lands on my palm. However, these are not like the raindrops on Earth, for they resemble feathers and melt into my skin as soon as they touch me. I look up at the sky to search for the source of these tiny blessings, but all I see are sheets of darkness, which gently fall onto my body as I lay down on my star. Despite the fact that I am isolated from Earth, I cannot help but to feel at peace. I guess I should be worried, but for now I lean my head back and stare up into my sky. How ironic to think that right now a science class or a young couple is gazing up at the star I lounge on. I picture their worrying faces

and furrowed brows looking up to it for guidance. They desperately wish for a blessing as we soar by in the sky. I wish I could help them, but I know that while they’re on Earth, they will continue to be engulfed by the struggles and disasters that are birthed each day. I want so badly to reach my hand down to grab theirs and say, “1, 2, 3 . . . Jump!” as I pull them onto my star, but I know none of them would take the risk. It is understandable because Earth used to make me feel the same way: scared of anything I could not understand. An excruciating beeping penetrates my ears, and my universe suddenly fades away and is replaced by my wooden desk, bedside lamp, and dresser. I roll over in bed and reflect on the fantasy that has been stolen from me. How I wish I could return to my star! I picture the beauty of simplicity and peacefulness. No competition, no jealousy, no success because I am already content with what I have. It’s amazing the things you can see when there is nothing to look at. How I yearned to return there and escape the fast-paced world.

Julia Reinsenfeld, terracotta


Oneself Who am I I am the orphaned baby girl, I am the lost daughter of China, I am the found daughter of America, I am the lucky one.   Self-image Looking in the mirror, I am shocked by my Asian appearance; expecting to see a different face, I marvel at my delusion.   Comfort Surrounded by multitudes of people who look like me, I feel alleviation as one of the mass as I undergo a recognition of self, emerging a tranquil being.

~Melissa Wood

Maddie Krips, chalk pastel and charcoal on paper


Sui Generis Hath Won the War Victoria Thede Hear the author read her work...


he can stretch her that could come crashing down but mouth so that it grins, that glimmer of family that disaplips glossed to perfection and pears around every corner. Like a cheeks blushed as though she pixie carrying sparkles that burn really is laughing. She can the human brain, she cannot paint her nails like she grasp the ultimate hidden was just in the mood, treasure. and she can widen and Her cage is beautiful stretch her eyes so that and soft. They admire she appears awake and the luxurious pillows that cheerful. She can walk in surround her prison. She high heels as if she feels is one of a kind, unique, tall and powerful, and she and always told she was can wear skirts that swish so special. But while her body that her hips seem swinging is pristine, she is tarnished to a beat. Her top can remain and adulterated all the same. unbuttoned without a care in the While her jail is gorgeous and world, and her hair can flow down romantic, it traps her and breaks her back as if she is free. down her morals so that her self She can snap her tongue although is lost. And when the lights go off at the words aren’t her own, so the night or the rain falls down, she finds Sydney Poretsky, earthenware thoughts trickle through her teeth like herself searching the corners of her burning lava. She can be beautiful cell for that diamond that she knows without feeling so, and one can’t ever see that twinshe is. She feels it calling, but it is so elusive around kle in her eye that looks like a smile but is actually a some. Yet it shines around others. tear. Her fingers tremble as she reaches for her glass, To be held and loved! To be sung of and to sing and they shake as she picks up her fork. When her to; how we relate to one another as people. The feet slip slightly on her pump, it isn’t just her body phrases catch at her fingertips, for that connection is


indefinable. It’s the fountain of cool water that bursts into flames, yet at what moment does liquid become a blaze? And at what moment does it dissolve into black muck, flowing down the toxic creek of oil and waste? That latter moment is the one that breaks our hearts, sobbing and crying behind the bedding. The giggles and tears are what define our feelings for the outsider. But time goes on, and the expressions of emotion change. Some brighten and glisten with fresh water and sunlight, robust green leaves to be flaunted. Others fade, and although the sepia photographs hang on the wall, they hide behind the shadows. They are no longer art, but history. They are examined and named, species identified and

characteristics listed until the last remaining spark becomes an ash. She picks up the ashes and tries to rekindle a fire, but to no avail. So she tries to move on and focuses on her and her connections. Not the ones she was born to, but the ones she has created herself and has yet to compose, a song that she can sing without judgment or fear. So she lives! The cage is no more, and her words ring golden. She can free herself, for her pen has defeated the sword in her side! Her tongue snaps with the ferocity that only passion can bring. Freedom never tasted this sweet on her fresh, born-again lips, and her spirit floods back like ambrosia each day.

Tess Iannarone, chalk pastel on paper


10 Word Poems Is what you’re looking for right in front of you? I’d never thought I’d see the day we parted ways.

What would happen to us If forever was a dream?

~Maddie Slack

Together, forever but always apart. Finding hearts, a perfect catastrophe. Serenity in darkness as crickets’ lullabies cause me to slumber. The soothing water that creeps at my toes calms me. Passion in the air, this feeling will never end here.

~Drue Foster

Lauren Ahn, digital photograph


Somehow, History still seems To be a mystery to me.

Favorite jeans. Dark blue, Broken in from love and wear. Camisole. Hot pink, gonna shrink Spots of color from underneath. Sweater. Blue, full of holes.. Not much help this winter. Scarf. Sparkly stars. Christmas accessory. I’ll wear it all year. Boots. Worn caramel suede. Soft, furry, bliss Warms my feet.

Lia Downing, pencil and marker on paper

~Alice Sprinkle


My Little Friend Christina Hogg


epression watched of making the trek down as the old man to the breakfast room of opened his eyes and his penitentiary. Acstruggled to rise out of quaintances sit at his northe creaking cot with mal table and stifle grins the rusty springs and as a gloopy, off-white stained mattress. He cake is set down in front perched on the fringe of of his deflated gut. They the man’s mind, awaitcroak a mocking tune ing a flicker of hope. The and ask that he blow out man pulled a faded and the wildfire gathering of musty cable-knit sweater candles. Remembering all over his head and slowly the anniversaries before tugged on trousers. The this one, the candle-wax warming aroma of wood lines surrounding his smoke and mothballs chops rearrange until the floats around in his skull area vaguely resembles a and rolls over his tongue, shadow of his previously mingling together in a brilliant smile. His old Margaux Villeneuve, charcoal on paper velvety song and washfriend begins to tug on his ing nostalgia over him pullover, at the neck and in sweet waves. He notices with surprise that his old upper arms. The man begins to feel first uncomfortfriend is not next to him this morning and, worrying able, then trapped. He tries to remove the shirt but that he may return, busies his mind with the thought without the proper strength, and no one around him


the man consents. No one notices the slower pace of the man, for Depression gives him an appearance of joy and peace even while inside his brain unhappy thoughts are darting in and out like minnows. Those who surround the man greet Depression daily, believing that it is instead their old friend. The cobwebbing memories and rancid thoughts Depression weaves into his partner gradually begin to take hold until Depression is the only one holding up the shell of the man. Exhausted but fulfilled, Depression takes one last look at his prey, curled up and drained of all but one drop of life and now looking more like a helpless child than a weathered man. He then flees under the door at night while the man is in bed, looking for a new playmate.

Ashley Morefield, film photograph

noticing his discomfort, he is forced to sit and endure the increasingly constricting feeling. But Depression calms the man, reminding him of good memories past and coos lullabies into his ear. He speaks of plans and ideas for the two of them and sits beside him while he reclines in the softer hours of the day. As the months tick by, the filmy, sticky frog fingers find footholds in more places of the man’s mind. Depression caresses the man, greeting the familiar friend and reminding him of his presence. Despite the weight that Depression burdens the man with, they are unable to leave each other. Together they entwine their fates, unable to imagine a life without the other. Depression kindly asks for more time and energy, and not wanting to displease his comrade,


The Baker, An Artist Justine Hayward


ob Marley, Frank Ocean, and The Weeknd flow through the speakers as the baker swirls pureed pumpkin and spices into cheesecake batter with the rhythm of the music. She pours the mixture into a graham-cracker-crumb-lined spring form pan and puts it into the oven. She quickly fills five more pans and pops them into the oven. She sits down and breathes, something she doesn’t do too often. For the past few years, around November, the calls start coming in. “Hi, Ashley is it? I heard about you from the Johnsons. We’re having a little autumnal soiree. Can you make three pumpkin cheesecakes and a few dozen rolls?” says one Bethesda housewife. “The football team won their division title. Can you make a chocolate cake for their team dinner?” says another. “We’re having both Bob’s and my family over for Thanksgiving dinner. We’re going to need four to six dozen rolls. Also, we’ll need three pumpkin cheesecakes. Oh, and two dozen cupcakes, it’s the in-laws’ anniversary,” says a local social mogul. No matter how much perceived work she has or how demanding the client is, Ashley almost always responds with a yes. Her normal holiday season schedule is as follows. She comes home from work, preheats the oven, possibly warms up some dinner, and starts baking. Her production is constant. I normally go to bed to the decadent aroma of chocolate cake and wake up to the scent of buttery rolls.


She enjoys every bit of sleep deprivation. Some weeks her eyes are heavy, like a sack of flour and a sack of sugar. There are burns on her forearm from hot baking sheets and pie tins. She doesn’t complain. It’s hard work, but she has it down to the perfect timing of a professional orchestra: the steady whirling of the mixer, the sustained hold of the piping bag as she decorates a cake, and the rhythmic scrapes of her spatula as she folds chocolate into batter. Like most art, not many people appreciate it when they should. Most visual artists die before they are ever recognized. No one else sees the importance of the flaky pie crust or creamy texture of a cheesecake. The artist sees the details. My sister Ashley sees the details. Most pastry chefs are not recognized after their art leaves someone’s mouth.

Sarina Dey, photograph on vellum over gold foil

Milan Booker, earthenware


You Are Wrong I scoff at you. I see you, and I scoff. I hear you “praying – Whimpering, Whining, Mumbling, Pleading To [your] numerous sticks and stones.” You believe that you’ve found the meaning – the meaning of life. But I know the truth. And you’re wrong. Truth is, “I alone exist.” Shall I prove it to you? The Shaper “changed the world [tore] up the past by its thick, gnarled roots and… transmuted it.” He tricked me, I rushed in, crying, “Mercy! Peace! … Friend! Friend!” The world was not beautiful, they did not accept me! We were the same, but what was I to them? Nothing. His words were nothing more than lies The Dragon told me so! The Shaper “provides an illusion of reality – puts together all their facts with a gluey whine of connectedness… He knows” Nothing. Life is not beautiful like they say, It’s ugly. Lies. Lies. LIES!


Quotations from Grendel by John Gardner (Vintage Press, 1989).

Their Queen almost fooled me too… She was so beautiful, I wanted to “sob… to smash things, bring down my howl of rage” But she was nothing, the same as my old, fat, ugly mother Meaningless You cry, “The Gods made this world for our joy!” You’re wrong. “Violence is truth.” And that’s all there is. We are all “a meaningless swirl in the stream of time, a temporary gathering of bits, a few random specks, a cloud… complexities: …dust.” So I scoff at you, Because the world is meaningless

And you are wrong.

~Ellie Currie

Lia Downing, charcoal on paper


Gillian Hutter, chalk pastel on paper

Buying and Selling


Buying and selling, Buying and selling, It’s the law of supply and demand . The more is demanded, The greater the supply. Buying and selling, Buying and selling, Buying and selling.

We need this money To feed ourselves. So we stand like soldiers at our post Slangin’ until we’re spent, Stoic machines: Sliding and exchanging, Sliding and exchanging, Sliding and exchanging.

Buying. The disease ravages the mind. Forces you, zombified To buy and consume, Buy and consume, Buy and consume. Hoard and inhale Like a dragon Guarding its keep.

Buying and selling, Buying and selling, Buying and selling , It’s the law of supply and demand. The more is demanded, The greater the supply. Buying and selling, Buying and selling, Buying and selling.

Selling. Could be just a bit of fun, Money on the side. Or an unwilling turn on the ride: Momma’s no good, Daddy’s in jail.

Buying, Glazed over. Selling, Shot.

Come on is this the best you’ve got? You steal my people, Turn them into shells. Killing them with negligence, Leaving us in this hell. You’ve abandoned us to the concrete; This is the family we’ve got. You’ve thrown away your citizens. You’re the ones outraged, but we’re the real victims. These are MY brothers dying OUR mothers crying MY cousins walking around in a daze Brilliant minds snuffed out by the haze “Do you want to see it? Do you wanna? There’s a braid in the back of my head!” The once genius one once said. These are MY friends smoking their lives away Not remembering what happened last night; Coulda been raped coulda been in a fight. MY real fear as a car slows down in front of me; The reflex that causes me to duck Or to drop When I hear anything that remotely sounds like a shot. The streets bleed for you, Staining our arms permanently red. A red streaked slick by the thousands of tears That have been and are waiting to be shed. We sing: “Ease my spirit, Ease my soul, Please free my hands from this barren soil” The concrete calls out for you.

Do you listen? Do you even care? You cover your eyes, turn your face, And pretend we’re not there. All you leave is with is the economics: Buying and selling, Buying and selling, Buying and selling. The song of the ghetto gospel on our lips.

~Claire Moore Carolina Wetzler, oil on canvas


Where Did My Fish Go? Beverly Sihsobhon


tossed my bag down on the carpet of the study and then ran up the stairs. Chinese school was boring, and I wanted to do something exciting. Like looking at my fish. It was a pretty fish. Its scales were blue and green, and it was shiny. Baba told me that because it was a beta fish, it wasn’t allowed to be in a fish tank with other fishies. When I asked him why, he said it was because beta fish attack other fish. Still, I loved my fish, even if he was a bully. I went into my room and looked at the fish tank. It was barely bigger than my head and filled with purple rocks. A single strip of plastic seaweed was stuck into the pebbles in a corner of the tank. The water was still and clear as I peered into the tank. Something was missing. “Baba!!!! Where’s my fish?” I yelled to my father downstairs. “What?” he yelled back at me. “Where’s my fish?” “Wait. Stop yelling.” I heard his footsteps up the stairs. He walked into my room. “What did you say?” “My fish is gone!” He looked at the tank. “Hmmm. You’re right. Did someone take it out?” “Why would anyone take my fish out of its tank? Don’t fish die if they’re out of water?” “Yeah, I’m sorry. Your fish might be dead.”

“What? I need to find my fish!” I fell to my hands and knees. It wasn’t in front of the cabinet. I look at the side of the cabinet, but it wasn’t there either. I stood up and looked behind it. The gap between the cabinet and wall was dark. All I could see was dust. But then, I see something squishy-looking on the floor. “I think I see it! It’s over here! Get it! Help me get it!” I said. “Wait, wait, wait. Where is it?” Baba looked down into the gap. With his fingers, he picked up my fish. It swung limply. “Put it in the water!” “I think it’s dead.” “No, put it in the water!” He went into the bathroom and filled up the small plastic cup my fish came in. He dropped it into the water. For a second it just drifted in the cup; then it wiggled and started swimming in circles. “Look! Look! See, it’s alive.” Baba doesn’t say anything, so he must be so excited that he can’t speak. “It’s so dusty! How is it alive?” “Uh, I’m not sure. You’d better put it back in the tank. Don’t let it jump out again, Beverly.”

Tola Oseni, earthenware


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Spot of Blue In a world of grays, I wish for a spot of yellow, A dash of orange, A brush of pink. What I wouldn’t give, For a bit of green, A drip of red, A hint of purple. I want to rise with the golden sun, See the sky catch fire With yellows, reds, purples, As they bleed across the horizon. I want to run through the lush green of a meadow With pops of pink, yellow, orange. Smell the fresh crispness of a flowery breeze, And glimpse the emerald towers of a forest in the distance. I want to touch rosy red lips, See the brush of pink on someone’s cheeks, Feel the gold, auburn, chocolate of silk hair, Connect with the rainbow of emotions in someone’s eyes. Take away this dull gray world, Tear down these void white walls, Destroy those empty black buildings. Defy the inexpressiveness of a black and white existence. Set the sky ablaze, Paint the meadows and the forests, Throw the memory of colors into the world, And watch it remember.


Jamie Katz, oil on canvas I wish for an aquamarine ocean With indigoes, sapphires, turquoise, And creamy foam that bubbles to the surface. As I dream of a world With a spot of blue.

~Yasmin Alamdeen

The Snow is White The snow is white. Angels are white As well as the white picket fence. The shirt to the skirt is white. The walls are white. The keys on the piano are white. Fingernails are white. Light is white. White is ‘pure.’ Yet I am black, Dark as night. What does that make me? Am I not pure? Am I not worthy of godly grace? Does my color mark the end of my welcome in humanity? Or the rest of the world’s sanity? 

~Erin Davis

Tyler Cloyd, film photograph



Soul The human soul is constructed of glass, Glass so fragile that it can crack with weakest sound and faintest fall. The human soul is made of wood, not so easily shattered, But with a single word it can be burned to ash and scattered to the wind. The human soul is reformed to cold metal, Not broken or burnt, but instead melted with enough pressure. The human soul results in stone, devoid of life; Supposedly it can no longer be altered, but some find a way. Each soul is different from person to person, but before you accuse again, remember this: The human soul begins as glass but almost never stays that way.

~Shea Sion Hear the author read her work...

Maya Sorini, earthenware


Tess Iannarone, chalk pastel on paper

Sonnet One Tuesday morning I found a strange pear, lopsided, lumpy, and lone in the crowd. There in that basket for those to compare, amongst the symmetric, dainty, and proud. And although the others excluded it, the ugly pear always yearned for acceptance. It struggled and toiled with genuine grit, but those blessed with beauty kept distance. So why hunger for the impossible? No one will ever reach the ideal, for perfection is unattainable. Therefore, accept oneself and learn to deal. If every pear is inadequate, then inherent flaws are not accidents.

~Christina Stevens


Another World Lauren Ahn


Lauren Ahn, digital photograph

n Santo Domingo, a great grandfather lived in one home I visited. He sat in his old, rugged, wood chair, cushioned only with a torn, red-striped pillow and missing one of its wooden arms. The chair sunk in a way that told me he did not get up from it very often. He sat with his long, withered legs bent up in front of his chest and stared emptily at the concrete floor in front of him. He wore a faded, blue t-shirt too big for his scrawny frame, and a pair of ripped shorts that bunched around his emaciated thighs. His bones looked so brittle that I could practically hear them creaking and crackling with every move he made. The skin around his mouth drooped, and his wisps of white hair stuck out in all directions. I could see every swollen joint, knuckle, and bone through his thin, wrinkled, leathered skin. Dozens of flies buzzed around his body, perching on his shoulders and landing on his hands. His sunken eyes were foggy and glazed over, he was missing all of his teeth except for a single chipped one on the bottom, he had a severe under-bite, and he could barely lift his arms on his own. But when I walked in through the front door, his green eyes brightened, and he shakily raised a gaunt arm to shake my hand. In Spanish that I could barely understand and could hardly hear through his croaking voice, he told me he still had hope for the future, still had hope in God. “Gloria a Dios.� eee


Lauren Ahn, digital photograph On one half of the country, there are luxury beach resorts where the Kardashian family vacations. Expensive hotels line the beautiful blue oceans and white sands. The water is crystal clear and the brightest cerulean blue. On the opposite side of the country, the Dominican people live in complete poverty with no food, water, electricity, or money. They have never seen one of those fancy resorts before. The Dominican Republic is hit often by intense tropical storms. One rainstorm can flood an entire village because there is no drainage or sewage system. Even with all of the rainfall, however, these villages have no access to drinking water. As I trekked through the sludge of one of the villages, I ducked into a cluttered, mud-bottomed home with my group. Dented, stained pots and torn blankets littered the ground. Rusted, discolored tin sheets leaned against each oth-


er to make the walls and roof, as was usual for village homes. Random pieces of raggedy clothing hung from the walls and the backs of mismatched, cracked chairs. A few skeletal chickens clucked around the yard. Water dripped through the gaping cracks and openings in the roof. Seven-year-old Juan Jesús dragged in a blue bucket of murky, brown water that splashed over the sides. He poured some of it into another container, placed the bucket gently on the ground, and dutifully started scrubbing away at his family’s broken, plastic dishes. As he finished washing the dirty dishes in the dirty water, I watched his hunched mother pick up a bottle of bleach. She took the container of water, poured in the chemicals, and stirred it with a cracked wooden spoon. I soon realized what she was doing. They have to collect water from dirty streams or leftover rain in the streets, and then pour bleach in it so that they have clean water to drink. Juan Jesús’ older brother, Franklin, brought in a bucket of dry mud. He dumped it onto the floor of their home and spread it around the puddles of water that had accumulated. In an attempt to dry up the mud in their home, they must bring in more dirt to soak up the water. Drinking, bathing, and washing dishes from the same bleached, dirty water. Drying up mud with more mud.

Lauren Ahn, digital photograph eee As I weaved my way through the crowded village of tin-sheet houses, smiling and waving to the kids greeting us from their windows, and holding hands with the ones who joined us, a father came out of his doorway holding a little girl and wanted to speak to us. He held out the sleeping girl in his arms to show us the open wounds that covered her entire side. She had fallen onto a kerosene lamp weeks before, severely burning her side. She had no access to any kind of medical attention, so the wounds were gaping, oozing, and infected. I cringed at the sight of the mangled girl. As our interpreters spoke to the father about taking her to our doctors, the girl woke up and looked right at me. She gazed up at me with a look of

pain and confusion, listening to the mix of Spanish and English whirling around her. She had the biggest, brightest brown eyes with a set of thick, long lashes, the kind our society pays millions for with mascara, fake eyelashes, and colored contacts. eee The village was referred to as “The Dump.� It was located around a huge dumpsite and continuously had trash trucks driving through its dusty, grimy streets. Adults sat outside and socialized with other adults as they bounced their little babies on their laps and tried to control their rowdy toddlers. With the help of an interpreter, I started to talk to a mother who held a seven-month-old, cherubic baby boy with curly tufts of dark brown hair. He slobbered all over


his fingers and nestled quietly in her floral-skirted lap. Her hair was braided and pulled up into a messy bun on the top of her head. She looked worn out, damaged, and old. She told me about her family and her three children, who were all under the age of six. She told me that the kids of this village, along with her own, have learned the schedules of the dump trucks that come through. They know when the trucks from the fancy resorts and hotels come because those have the best trash to dig through and the most potential for scraps of food or old blankets. eee A herd of children followed quickly behind me as I jogged across the open field holding a giggling little toddler in my arms. The skies were gray and cloudy. The grassy field was littered with deep, muddy puddles and dotted with mounds of horse poop. We had three balls, and I wanted to start a game of kicking to one another since I was not capable of much else. One of the older boys dragged behind him an old, mud-covered tire by a thick rope, with three jubilant little girls sitting on the edges as he pulled. They squealed and clapped as the boy ran in wide circles faster and faster. Two young boys tapped me on the shoulder and pointed at themselves, motioning for me to watch what they were going to do. They stood several feet apart, leapt into the air, made full flips forward, then landed on their feet. The three little girls had now switched places with the boy and dragged him around on the tire. I looked around the field at the other children and the rest of my team. There were endless piggy-back races, children chasing after one another, and others blow-


ing big bubbles. One of my team members played the guitar and sang with a crowd of joyful children. The atmosphere was full of laughter, cheer, and vivacity. The Dominican kids are scrawny, bony, and malnourished, yet they have so much energy, constantly playing outside, radiating strength and vibrance. Their souls are full of life and their smiles brighten my day. eee Our cramped, hot bus waited to drive back to the hotel after our morning in Santo Domingo. The seat stuck to my sweating legs. The lack of air conditioning made the air even more sticky and humid. I looked out the window to smile at the city children who had crowded around to wave at us and enthusiastically show us their handstands. The city of Santo Domingo was lined with narrow buildings that are all connected together. Trash piled up along the messy, uneven, cracked streets. Loud music blasted from old boomboxes. Shops heaped old-fashioned sinks and toilets for sale in front of their buildings. Stray, scraggly dogs wandered through looking for any scraps of food or any puddles of drinkable water. People were constantly mingling, walking around, but with no clear purpose. There is an aura of laxness and indifference. Right in front of my window, a young man and three little boys sat on the steps of a narrow building. The man gripped a paper bag holding a green glass bottle of liquor and gave a welcoming, friendly smile. The boys waved their arms at me to get my attention through the bus window. They saw the camera in my hands and wanted to strike a few poses for me. I waved back to them, raising my camera to capture their eager faces. The three boys

violence. Evidently getting bored of posing for the photos I had ceased taking, he sauntered over to the man and motioned at the bagged bottle. Making eye contact with me through the window and sensing my immediate disapproval, the man looked back at the boy and laughed. He shook his head and raised the bottle away from the little, reaching arms. As the bus started to pull away, I looked down at my camera for a moment, but out of the corner of my eye, I saw the man hand the bottle to the boy. I looked up and saw the four-year-old chugging the liquor, grasping with both hands the bottle that was bigger than his head. Satisfied, he set the bottle down on the step, with a frothy mustache covering his upper lip.

Lauren Ahn, digital photograph

joyfully hopped off the steps to throw up a few peace signs with their fingers, flashing big, toothy smiles. As I snapped away, I realized that one of the boys clutched a big, black handgun and was sticking it in his mouth the way little children play with toys. This little guy, who couldn’t be more than four years old, was playing with a real gun in the watching eyes of the man I assumed to be his father. Shocked, I stopped taking photos for a moment and tried to understand how any child could be allowed to play with a weapon like that, especially at such a young age. I imagined the future consequences this exposure would have on this adorable, innocent boy as he grew up under the constant influence of gangs and


We Should We should put The knuckles of our hands together To make mountains meet. We should tether The husks of our knees, So they look like seas. When spines interweave Like waves, Or the plains between our shoulders Form concaves; And we make maps And we press leaves From the contours on our backs, There is a compass in our bones Saying I should put my eyes into yours, And breathe. We should make roads out of your hair And each time a sparrow dies, Mourn the beating air.

~ Elizabeth Harris


Ashley Holder, digital photograph

Emma Kindig, digital photograph Scroll, the annual magazine of the Scroll Club, publishes writings and artwork submitted by students of the Holton-Arms School. The club, founded in 1905 by Miss Arms, is the oldest club at the school and dedicated to “the reading, writing, and speaking of good English.” This year’s issue, printed on recyclable paper by Spectrum Printing and Graphics, in Rockville, Maryland, uses Goudy for text and Papyrus for titles and headings. Scroll is designed in Adobe InDesign CS6 and produced in the Student Publication Room of Holton-Arms School. If wishes were rainbows, we would not have much to wish for, thanks to the generous gift of new iMacs from John and Sou-Ching Wu, parents of last year’s editor-in-chief Delancey Wu.

Special Thanks Ms. Nandini Giridharadas • Ms. Ambria Archibald • Mr. Ben Ferry • Ms. Donna Maclean • Ms. Barbara Mandel Ms. Melinda Salata • Mr. David Scherbel • Mrs. Suzi Maybee

The Holton-Arms School does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national or ethnic origin, disability, or sexual orientation in the administration of its hiring, educational policy, admissions, financial aid practices, or of its athletic and other School-administered programs. Scroll is produced in the Student Publications Room of the Holton-Arms School.

© 2014

The Holton-Arms School

7303 River Road • Bethesda, Maryland 20817

Scroll 2014  

Scroll, the Holton-Arms School's literary club, founded in 1906 by Carolyn Hough Arms, seeks to develop the literary talents of Holton stude...