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Providence High School volume XXII | 2017


PROLOGUE BEFORE THE STORM Thick thunderheads gust over fields and stroke the wheat and corn stalks toward grain silos, farm houses. The structures groan with the anticipation of genesis and revelation. And thunder echoes in response, purple light dividing the sky in two: muted orange and the murky green of coming rain. Droplets reach for the dust of the plains, douse the thirsting roots of their drought and prepare them for the creation of a new type of art. The wind wails. Clouds twist over the bent grasses and worn barns as the storm waits for a moment to sculpt the land into its own masterpiece. The fields watch and brace themselves for the gentle caress of a cyclone. - Allie Debe


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LETTER FROM THE

EDITORS Dear reader,

Welcome to the twenty-second edition of Roars and Whispers literary-arts magazine. Our theme this year is the desire to seek powerful change in one’s life. We selected this theme to reflect the common thread of our pieces. For example, “SATs and Sugar Daddies” is a comedic piece about finding a solution to the stress of high school, and “Glitch Within the Clone” reflects a boy’s wish to reshape his relationship with his sister. On a more serious note, “Pink-Haired Girl” is a heartfelt piece about the transformative power of grief, and “Satinah Ahmad” reflects the desire for political change. This year’s magazine keeps in mind both the past and the future within the desire for change. The prologue “Before the Storm” invites you into the magazine. Storms represent both destruction and new beginnings, bringing change both physically and figuratively. The different perspectives in the magazine will change the way you think, similar to a storm’s effect on the landscapes. The epilogue “Firefly Capital of the World” closes the magazine by reiterating the changes that take place in relationships. The speaker experiences the constant nature of a relationship while unlocking new facets of her personality. The magazine follows this experience of change, and the epilogue expresses finality in that transition. Simply we want to show you change. Thank you for sharing this journey with us. Sincerely, Katherine Welch, Managing Editor Hannah Magraw, Copy and Nonfiction Editor Remy Lucien, Design Editor

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POLICY

Roars and Whispers is published by the literary-arts magazine students at Providence High School. Poetry, prose and artwork are submitted by members of the student body. Each written submission is judged anonymously by every member of the staff. The magazine publishes the prose and poetry selections that receive the highest scores and

the artwork that best enhances the written content. It is an open forum for all students; the ideas presented in this magazine do not reflect those of the Providence High School faculty. However, as a school publication, Roars and Whispers reserves the right to deny publication to those submissions that are deemed in inappropriate for a high

COLOPHON Roars and Whispers 2017 was printed by Herff Jones of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on 100# matte paper with a circulation of 800. Body text is Bergamo 10. Credit fonts are Sans 8, Sans Bold Oblique 8 and Sans Oblique 8. The standard sans serif font for titles is Function in the weights of Light, Medium, Book, LH Light, Light Condensed, Medium

STAFF

Kate Welch, Managing Editor Hannah Magraw, Copy and Nonfiction Editor Remy Lucien, Design Editor Em Carter, Art Editor Allie Debe, Publicity Editor

school audience. All members of the staff share the responsibility for spreads, so we do not specifically attribute any spread to any individual staff member. Roars and Whispers is the poetic voice of Providence High School. Whether through the strength of our roars or the softness of our whispers, we will be heard

Condensed and Demi. The standard serif font for titles is Bergamo in the weights of Small Caps and Italic. Hurme Geometric Sans 3 in the weights of Bold, Thin and Hairline are used for the magazine title. All graphic editing was done using Adobe Design and Web Premium CS6. The magazine was created with Herff Jones eDesign on Hewlett-Packard

computers. The outside and inside cover pages were done in Adobe InDesign CS6. In compliance with federal law, CharlotteMecklenburg Schools administers all educational programs, employment activities and admissions without discrimination against any person on the basis of gender, race, color, religion, national origin, age or disability

Paige Thomas, Business Editor Gayatri Chopra, staff Mayuri Dongre, staff Zoe Knepp, staff Arjun Nag, staff Blair Roberts, staff

Maura Barilla, staff Cayleigh Brown, staff Natalie Thulien, staff Emma Harrington, staff Sophia Laney, staff Marva Hutchinson, adviser

Letter from the Editors

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

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WRITING

06 09 10 12 15 16 19 20 23 25 4

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Salt

Cayleigh Brown Poetry

Seasons of Life Kaylee Bledsoe Fiction

Piazza Santo Spirito Hannah Magraw Poetry

SATs and Sugar Daddies Paige Thomas Personal Narrative

Birth of a War Katherine Welch Journalism

Traitor

Abigail Welch Fiction

Phoenix

Sophia Laney Poetry On the Significance of Sweet-Pea Scented Purell Katherine Welch Personal Narrative

Blackout Teeth Allie Debe Poetry

Symbolic Recipe Julia Cirone Poetry

27 28 30 32 35 41 42 45 46 49

Pink-Haired Girl Sophia Goudes Fiction

Ain’t Nothing Wrong Andy Hill Poetry

The Repairman Arjun Nag Journalism

Instructions on Loving a Poet Em Carter Poetry

Rocked to the Core Abigail Welch Fiction

Pointilism Remy Lucien Poetry

More Than a Church Emma Harrington Journalism

Sometimes Colette Page Poetry

Over Heels Em Carter Poetry

Americanish

Zoé Knepp Personal Narrative

50 53 57 59 60 63 65 67 68 71

43 Satinah Ahmad Annalise McCoy Poetry

Christ, Church and Caucasians Joey Chong Personal Narrative

Blueberries Allie Debe Poetry

Crystallized Fearless Caroline Macurda Fiction

Mud on his Hands Katherine Welch Fiction

Barbed Wire and Delicate Cranes Hannah Magraw Poetry

Glitch within the Clone Alan Islas Malanco Personal Narrative

A Hushed Ache in July’s Backyard Andy Hill Poetry

Kneaded Together Hannah Magraw Journalism

Stellar Death Omotayo Fasan Poetry

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ART WORK

07 08 11 12 14 17 18 21 22 24

Deep Blue Kaden Ray collage

Positive Feedback Loop Andy Hill watercolor

Gated New Orleans Allyn Vance photography

Untitled Alex Berenfeld photography

An Indiana Creek Allyn Vance photography

Two Faced Rachel Haigh colored pencil

Reverie

Andy Hill pen and watercolor

The Flower Patricia Faucher acrylic

Barn Owl Charlie Stefanac etching

Pacific Rose Diana Mitina tempera

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26 29 30 33 34 38 40 43 44 46

Astrolabe

Remy Lucien pen and digital collage

Chameleon Zoé Knepp acrylic

Wasteland

Kaden Ray colored pencil and marker

Drip

Teddy Perelli graphite

The Strange Lights

Andy Hill collage

Gallery

Various Artists various mediums

Anxiety

Drew Tiedeman ink drawing

Joe Son Jamie Ku oil

Daisy Olivia Guillebeau collage

Galaxy Teddy Perelli acrylic

48 50 56 58 61 62 64 66 69 70

70 Pretty in Gold Brooke Drury collage

Lilies

Jeffrey Shao watercolor

Last Four Years Kaylee Market mixed media sculpture

Running on the Moon Jamie Ku colored pencil

Mors Sanctorum Arjun Nag photography

Lydia Seo Jamie Ku chalk pastel

Back Then Andy Hill acrylic

Blue Boy Rei Pennington marker and acrylic

Helianthus Teagan Wilk acrylic

Skyline

Seth Fernandez photography

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S LT I am stagnant, yet you keep going. I float on salt water and tuck flowers in between my eyelashes, glossy and wet. You dig deep into my bones somehow without using your hands. My pulse is a metronome that magnetizes your subsisting. Two mouths, one voice. Your skin knew battle before it knew war----tan and fleshy graveyards between each rib. Flowers blossom in my stomach, a lush orchard fully grown. You heal your wounds with words, and I let mine bleed. I find religion in betrayal and the way the smoke curls, reaching for the sky. After the ash crumbles in my palm, I will write a constellation, painting the hunger onto my skin. I will be left starving. And you, still holy. You asked me which I would be, the feathers or the wax, like the sort of secret you can only whisper to a storm, and in the taste of it, only a hurricane would find sympathy. My organs tie in knots, and flowers grow from my chest. I am both, and I am neither, and it does not matter. For you, I drown. For me, you survive. - Cayleigh Brown

Deep Blue, Kaden Ray collage

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seasons of

life Kaylee Bledsoe

I

hear the crunch of leaves beneath my feet as I walk down the sidewalk, a gray, cracked strip of cement now covered in splashes of color. Deep blood red like my trademark chipped nail polish. Bright red like the old ballpoint pen that somehow helps me study better. Dark orange like the thousands of sunsets I have photographed. Bright yellow like the endless rows of sunflowers I pass on my way to the beach every summer. Soft yellow with hints of brown like the bananas my dad eats with peanut butter every morning. Vibrant green like the pack of spearmint gum I always keep in my back pocket. All these colors and memories are packed into the small leaves beneath my dull black shoes. I remember seeing the trees in full bloom and flowers everywhere not too long ago. I also remember walking this same road together, laughing and sharing stories. People can change as fast as the seasons, but those permanent memories stay deep inside my head, and I’m not yet ready to share with another temporary visitor in my life. In a few weeks, the colorful ground I walk on will become a cold and bare strip of gray cement once again. Except this time, the ground will be covered in white. No color. No sound. Only white. Once full of life and feeling, it is now hardened into a colorless, emotionless silence

Positive Feedback Loop, Andy Hill watercolor

Fiction

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piazza santo spirito The last remnants of the Italian sun glint off the Basilica di Santo Spirito, illuminating the rough plaster facade. As chattering people cross the worn cobblestone walkways, the glow washes away the day’s grime. The eight-hundred-year-old church warms to a beautiful caramel color, and the weary people transform into shining jewels that glitter in the setting sun. Golden street lamps, nestled among bistros, begin to flicker on, and as the outdoor dining tables fill, laughter permeates the summer air. People find comfort in warm accents and the smell of fresh basil. In the middle of the piazza, the stone fountain merrily dances with the evening’s effervescence.

The laughter dissipates into the August air, leaving only echoes, and all the people fade into the darkness, leaving only shadows. - Hannah Magraw

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Gated New Orleans, Allyn Vance

At last, families wind their way home. The square quiets, vacant except for shop owners sweeping the streets and straightening tablecloths as they hum the last of the evening’s melody.

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SATs and Sugar Daddies Paige Thomas

Untitled, Alex Berenfeld

am just a week into junior year, and it is already as if the Grim Reaper himself is trudging only inches behind me. I don’t know if it is mental exhaustion or my failed devotion to my less than effective philosophical motto that coffee does in fact heal all wounds, but I have already adopted the mentality of barely scraping my way through all of my assignments and responsibilities. And the traumatic pinnacle of this year is nearly upon me: My mother is forcing me to take the SAT in only twenty-two days. Listen, I totally understand that colleges appreciate the ability to differentiate between twelve and a dozen. However, I view the SAT as not only a nuisance but a microcosm for my upcoming psychological breakdown. I mean, add two letters to it and you’ll realize that SAT is truly just an abbreviation for SATAN. Junior year is hard enough. Then add in the SAT, and it’s as if the devil has finally decided

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to unleash his fury on me. So keeping all these factors in mind, I have decided to make the financially ingenious decision of dropping out of high school and marrying into money. Though my aspirations in life may not be as conventional as the rest, I genuinely believe that economic espousal outweighs the stress of earning a high school diploma or a college degree. But let me tell you, my parents were not shedding tears of joy when I informed them that I plan on spending my college savings on plastic surgeries. However, I figure that in this cutthroat career, I need to take every measure to impress a Sugar Daddy. If you are unfamiliar with this term, a Sugar Daddy is a man about two to nine times your age who takes the last scintilla of your pathetic dignity in exchange for money. To some, this whole idea is considered immoral, but I prefer not labeling it as infidelity. Rather, I’d call it an investment. And now, you have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to

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receive dating advice from me, a Kardashian wannabe, for free. Unfortunately, high school dropouts are at the bottom of the Sugar Baby totem pole, ranking just below the employees of Hooters, so I’d recommend starting your journey for monetary love at sugardaddie.com. For those of you who do not know this website, it’s basically a place where all the desperate girls sign up after being rejected countless times by online suitors. The most important part of dating online is building your profile. Hence, my profile picture is actually a gorgeous Victoria’s Secret model. It is also crucial to discuss how you have no goals in life other than starring in The Real Housewives of Orange County. This is actually a turn-on for a lot of Sugar Daddies, so they know that worthless things like your own dreams and aspirations will not get in the way of your business-like relationships. But I’m not completely barbarically desperate. I have my standards too. Like I clearly state in

my profile, I only allow myself to date men who earn at least seven digits annually because if they earn a penny less-----I’m out. Your profile will then be viewed and liked by an eclectic group of money holders, ranging from orange-tinted, pot-bellied businessmen to personality-deprived plastic surgeons. This is why it is so important to adapt to the lifestyle of not looking into their hearts but looking into their wallets. However, you are not the only one that reaps benefits from this cashcrazed courtship. I like to think of it as mutualism. Consider this: If an individual purchased a flaming red Lamborghini, he would most likely want to show it off and even brag a little. Not only does this luxurious car evoke a sense of pride and youth, it also ignites envy in those around him. You are the Lamborghini. The only difference is that you cost a lot more. In fact, I’d consider this to be charity. You are assisting the elderly, and your form of a tax deduction is complete reign over his

Visa. Some may argue that this relationship is dehumanizing, but think on the bright side, at least you still have slightly more self-worth than an aspiring soap actress moonlighting as an exotic dancer in Indiana. Be completely honest: Is it really that wrong to prioritize Sugar Daddies over the SAT? The SAT doesn’t provide amenities for my addiction to buying shoes. The SAT doesn’t satisfy my need to run others’ bank accounts completely dry. The SAT doesn’t even pay for the new Botox torture that Cosmopolitan Magazine has been raving about. In a sense, though, I’m putting forth the same planning and dedication as any other mediocre student would toward her career. I’m just skipping a few steps. Although my idea of love and success may not be as endearing as it is utterly horrifying, I do still consider marrying into money a favorable life choice since I would rather lose all dignity than struggle to live through the hell that’s commonly referred to as junior year

Personal Narrative

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THE BIRTH OF A

WAR KATHERINE WELCH

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F

ilms rarely trigger such diverse reactions as The Birth of a Nation. The movie struggles to stand on its own as a work of art separate from the controversy surrounding Nate Parker, the director, producer, writer and lead actor. Though strengthened by quality acting and the historical relevance, The Birth of a Nation falls short of its potential. Centered on the famous 1831 slave rebellion in Virginia, The Birth of a Nation sheds light on the legacy of Nat Turner (Nate Parker). The film establishes Nat’s righteousness when his mother, Nancy (Aunjanue Ellis), is told that her son has the holy marks of a prophet. As young Nat matures with the expectation that he can communicate with God, he develops a friendship with Sam Turner (Armie Hammer), the plantation owner’s son. Sam’s mother (Penelope Ann Miller) teaches Nat to read the Bible, and he lives in relative contentment, unaware of the tragic reality that most of his fellow slaves endure. But as a traveling preacher, he witnesses horrors that gradually gnaw away at his complacency, and Nat catapults into the role of a rebel leader, which ultimately ends in his death and tighter slave codes.

The narrative is important-----Parker dares to present an unapologetic black man fighting for his equality, an image that is rarely seen in mainstream Hollywood productions. However, Parker portrays Nat without nuance, static and one-dimensional. His anger, his passion and his violence are always justified. Parker eliminates the agonizing decisions and the complexity of moral justification for his actions and simply delivers a flawless hero, passive and uncomplicated. In failing to acknowledge the tortured, intricate character that was Nat Turner, Parker limits the impact of his story. Parker further muddles the message of The Birth of a Nation with his poor decisions as director. The script is riddled with cliché stereotypes, fitting though some are: All white racists spit tobacco. All tragic death scenes are punctuated with mournful, slow choral music. All murders are exceptionally gory in an attempt to evoke reactions from the audience. Furthermore, a critical moment in the movie is historically inaccurate. The film depicts the brutal beating and rape of Nat’s wife, Cherry (Aja King). Not only is there no historical evidence to support such an assault, but the scene focuses fully on Nat. In a moment that

is clearly not about him, the film follows Nat’s anguish and Nat’s anger as he is moved to ignite a rebellion after the abuse of white slave masters affects his own family. As Nat’s anger accelerates, Cherry’s response to the trauma she endures is irrelevant. These shortcomings are especially unfortunate because Nat Turner is an important historical figure; his bravery and leadership were instrumental in inspiring later slave rebellions. The foundation of the movie is thoughtprovoking and powerful. Furthermore, in whitewashed Hollywood, a film that stars primarily people of color and seeks to honor the sacrifices of their ancestors is a rare find. Parker cast an array of talented actors and actresses. In particular, Aja King does a noteworthy job with the role of Cherry. In spite of her passionate performance and the importance of Nat’s experience, the film remains riddled with melodrama and poor directing. The Birth of a Nation struggles to convey the story of an important and often ignored historical figure while tackling a critical question of morality and justice. Unfortunately the film’s good intentions are not enough to redeem the flaws in The Birth of a Nation’s delivery

An Indiana Creek, Allyn Vance

Journalism

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TRAITOR Abigail Welch

T

he girl approached the peak of the sand dune; her salt-stained hair whipped through the wind and stung her face. She listened to the waves as their gaping jaws crashed over the rocks and snapped shut against the cliff face. The early morning sun lifted tentatively into the sky. Rays seemed to crawl from the Earth one tendril at a time. The sunlight grazed the girl’s face, the blaring light and the shadows of night accurately reflecting who she was and what she had to hide. She tried to bury the pain deep. The fog lingered. The steam floating off the rocks mingled with the car exhaust from the stolen, beat-up Ford parked in the distance. The scratched paint and rusted doors sat alone, the growling of the engine the only sign of polluted cities and smog. The girl knelt. She buried her hands deep in the sand, feeling the gritty warmth. She wished that time would stop and she could run and jump and laugh and play. The girl relaxed back

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onto her heels; wisps of blissful memories crept back, and she tasted the briny salt water on her lips. She experienced the aching muscles, stinging cuts and the elation she felt after surfing in the massive rolls of the sea. However, the girl had long since changed her image. Gone were the red cheeks and the innocent smile that blossomed after the rolling tundra had pushed her toward the shore. Gone was the chattering of the seagulls. The tinkling fairy laugh that said anything was possible had vanished. The joy and laughter was replaced with a deep abyss of anxiety, fear and hate, crippling her with the stinging bruises and the lash of tongues. The images continued to latch onto her. The night the phone call came from the police station. The scattered remains of the wooden boat dashed to pieces against the cliffside. The loss of her father. The constant shuttle from home to home, orphanage to orphanage. The desperate search for any relative. But they were alone, the girl

and her father. Ready to face the world together-----until they weren’t. What she lost was not to be found, and the rising sun announced that the world continued even if she did not. The ocean tossed its proud head proclaiming its impatience; it would not be kept waiting. The car exhaust rose, and the engine sputtered, ready to escape into the day. If the pain and horror and sorrow dragged her down, few would notice. The sun would rise in the east and fall gently in the west. The itchy sand, the rough waves, the burning sun reminded her that in life there was strength, a strength she no longer cared about nor possessed. She would survive, and when she was done surviving, she would come here and bury herself in the depths of the sand and hand her soul over to death. Hand her life over to the place she had once called her home, a traitor that had stolen her life, snatched her love and left her with less than nothing

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Two Faced, Rachel Haigh colored pencil

Fiction

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PHOENIX You dig your fingers into the spaces between my ribs, split open, burning smooth velvet scars into my skin----words I never had the courage to say to you.

Between my ribs, split open, I have learned to rise from my phoenix ashes and words I never had the courage to say to you. But I fell in love with a wildfire sun. I have learned to rise from my phoenix ashes, giving my aching wings a warrior’s name. But I fell in love with a wildfire sun, and I’m flying too close, Icarus reborn. Giving my aching wings a warrior’s name, you explore the untamed geography of my body, and I’m flying too close, Icarus reborn. You analyze my dipping valleys and rocky edges, then move on to uncharted territory. You explore the untamed geography of my body, burning smooth velvet scars into my skin. You analyze my dipping valleys and rocky edges, then move on to uncharted territory. You dig your fingers into the spaces. - Sophia Laney

Reverie, Andy Hill pen and watercolor

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on the

SIGNIFICANCE of

sweet-pea-scented purell Katherine Welch

W

hen I was five, I smelled of Purell. The acrid odor lingered in the fabric of my backpack. It clung to my hands long after the ethyl alcohol evaporated from my skin, prematurely wrinkled from constant sanitizing. Purell was required to enter our house, to eat, to go upstairs, to hold my sister. Every Monday morning, I clipped a new sweet-pea-scented bottle to my lunchbox. The unwavering scent of hand sanitizer reminded me of the antiseptic smell of the hospital where doctors gave me my own stethoscopes and plastic syringes. While my sister slept in her incubator, I decided that I would be a doctor too and taped oxygen tubes to my stuffed animals. I played with inflated exam gloves and proudly monitored my Webkinz patients. For my oxygenated pets and me, the hospital was an adventure, and the surgeons were miracle workers. The doctors seemed infallible as they saved my sister from a procession of illnesses that paraded through our lives with unfettered authority. As I grew older, the hospital didn’t seem so simple. My sister’s recovery was a scatter plot of breakthroughs and relapses that oscillated around normal but never quite arrived. I began to recognize the painstaking research, clinical trials and years of education that allowed her doctors to make slow progress. My understanding of the

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complexity of medicine, however, only encouraged my curiosity. In my junior year of high school, I began researching Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). As a child, I met countless young cancer patients. I sat beside their mothers. I colored cartoons with their brothers. And I watched their families pack up their favorite fuzzy slippers when they died. Ten years later, I hadn’t let go of those kids. I wanted to understand why they had died. I watched YouTube anatomy videos and read study guides for students in medical school, taking notes on yellow legal pads. As I investigated ALL, I found dozens of articles that discussed the brutality of refractory cases. For most patients, my childhood friends included, a recurrence of ALL was chemoresistant, leaving few treatment options. Armed with my arsenal of legal pads, I combed medical journals. My room was inundated with papers on refractory leukemia-----printouts of clinical trials, pages torn from medical journals, tattered science magazines. I was searching for research that offered real hope for the children I once knew. I found it in the form of T-cell therapy. In Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, cancer progresses rapidly and forms from either B-cell or T-cell lymphocytes. In B-lineage leukemia, the patient’s T-cells are left intact and

healthy. In T-cell therapy, doctors harvest T-cells and use them to fight malignant B-cells by genetically modifying the cells to target the antigen CD19. The patient’s own cells fight the leukemia. I was fascinated by the research I compiled. For patients with refractory, B-lineage ALL, T-cell therapy heralded a success rate substantially higher than that of traditional chemotherapy. The science behind the therapy carried implications far beyond leukemia: In using the patient’s own cells, researchers redirected the body’s natural immune response to fight malignancies. This reflected a critical approach to treatment that focused not on merely curbing cancer, but also on investigating how it progressed and how the body could naturally defend itself. My sister was discharged for the last time several years ago. She loves Thomas Jefferson and golfing. She is fortunate, but I haven’t forgotten the kids who are not. I keep my stack of yellow legal pads on my dresser, beside a bottle of sweet-pea-scented hand sanitizer. When I see T-cell therapy mentioned on the news or in one of my medical journal subscriptions, I print out the article and add it to my pile. As researchers continue to refine T-cell therapy, I hope to join them, fortified by legal pads and sweet-peascented Purell

Roars & Whispers

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14233-005 School Providence High School 2/20/17 2:26 PM

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The Flower, Patricia Faucher acrylic

Personal Narrative

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Barn Owl, Charlie Stefanac etching

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BL ACK OU T T E E T H She stares at irises and blackout teeth through shaded leaves and thick branches, and those irises call to her with a beckoning ferocity. She blinks, and they disappear into the underbrush. Legs reach toward the opium mist of darkened trees and crumbling insects which chirp like rocks plummeting into waves, thick and heavy and thundering. The beats pound rhythms in her chest as she dances in euphoria with trees, swaying branches. Poison ivy caresses her ankles and pulls her into woodland ecstasy, whispering oakland lullabies in wired eardrums. Hypnotic eyes watch her; smiles beg her to safety. Pine needles pierce porcelain skin, grip and pull her into a translucent daze. But she sees them watching her as she slips beneath bridged roots and chaotic underbrush. Teeth and blackout irises stare back at her. - Allie Debe Poetry

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recipe symbolic

• • • • • • • • • •

1/2 cup of cuteness 1/2 cup of caring 1/2 cup of helpful 1 teaspoon (a dash) of silly and funny 1/2 cup of cat-lover 1/2 cup of chocolate-lover 1 teaspoon (a dose) of shy and quiet 1/2 cup of a child of God 1/2 cup of a Christian girl at heart 1 whole cup of Down Syndrome-----because I need to be seen as a whole and not a half. • 1 whole cup of a miracle * 1 warning about myself-----Once I eventually get to know you, I will be talking a whole lot to you. - Julia Cirone

Pacific Rose, Diana Mitina tempera

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Astrolabe, Remy Lucien pen and digital collage

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14233-005 School Providence High School 2/22/17 1:38 PM

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Pink-haired Girl Sophia Goudes

Her hair was pink. Always pink. Always this bright, not-quite-neon-butalmost hot pink. And I loved it. It wasn’t her natural color, of course. She dyed it. For as long as I knew her, she dyed it, and she maintained it, always taking care to keep it bright and colorful and cheerful, just like her personality. She took pride in her hair. She considered it a symbol of everything in her that was proudly different from society. And it wasn’t just that. It was a representation of her bright, cheerful personality, her everything. That perfect shade of pink was just so her. I should have seen the signs. I really should have. The persona people show others isn’t necessarily their real self, as that psychology class we took together taught me. It also taught me the signs. And yet, I still didn’t see them. Why hadn’t I seen them? It happened slowly. Her smiles seemed more strained; she started staring off into the distance more; she was distracted easily. A somber look here, a sad look there, a lost, blank look everywhere. She started going out less and less, no longer interested in the things that she loved. I started missing her. I would wonder where she was, but then I would be distracted by our-----

which slowly became only my-----other friends, and I would soon forget. And her hair. Her beautiful pink hair. She cared for it, loved it so much. She was so careful and gentle with it. She always kept it dyed the exact same color, the exact same shade, the exact same brightness. And then, she let the pink color fade. I didn’t know what she had done until they called me to the office one day, the one day I will never forget, even as I am old and graying. Their faces were so somber. I wondered why, but I wasn’t as concerned as I should have been. They told me then, but I didn’t want to believe it. I refused to believe it. I didn’t want to believe that she was dead. She left me a note. They found it next to her body. Inside the envelope was a lock of her pink hair and two words typed on a clean folded piece of printer paper: Remember me. The hair was the clue that she had been planning for months because the lock was bright and pink and reminiscent of the times we laughed. The color was not yet faded. I could have noticed. I should have noticed. I could have helped her, stopped her. I would have, could have,

should have stopped her, helped her. But I didn’t. Just as she wanted me to, I will remember her. I will remember her by doing everything that we did together. I will remember her in everyone she and I knew. I will remember her with my hair which is now the same shade of pink, the same shade of the lock of hair tucked away in a locket nestled on my neck. I will remember her. But I won’t only remember her as the girl with the bright pink hair. A few words, a hug, even a shoulder to cry on, and I could’ve helped her, at least started to help her. I should have seen the signs, but I didn’t. Now she is gone, and her pink hair is gone, and I am left here alone, pink-haired for her and for me. The same shade of pink. I will take care of it. I will not let the color fade. Not like she did. I will not let the color fade. I will not let me fade. I should have seen the signs, but I didn’t. And I regret it. Her hair was pink. Always pink. Always this bright, not-quite-neon-butalmost hot pink. And I loved it. And I loved her

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ain’t

Nothing WRONG

The motel sign flickers, but between blackouts the golden light makes my promises look real, the way the grass bends real and the sun burns real, and I can finally breathe for real in this wild country of his. I tell him that I don’t miss home, not one bit, that I have no doubt of his innocence and that I’ll get him a glass of water, be right back. I turn away from him for a split second, and thoughts of him professing his love from the bed warp into him, a week ago, plus gun plus gas station clerk with his hands above his head. But he was a gun-slingin’, gum-chewin’ wrangler come to take his one-and-only away to the promised land. The police sirens were just an excuse to flee and stretch our half-grown legs; ain’t nothing wrong with that. I kept my hesitations to myself, so all he knew was our stargazing talks and the shiner my father punched into me when he heard of how the two of us got along. When I close my eyes, I see the cops coming for us. Blue, red lights. Bet that clerk doesn’t think there ain’t nothing wrong with us holding up his shop. With my father on the ground and blood in his mouth. Two checked curtains blow out from the open window,

and I pretend they are whispering to me a getaway plan. Blue, red. Mama is looking for me. I stick a finger in the sink, but the water won’t run cold. Blue, red. Sheriff Harper and his boys are looking too. Whatever, he won’t mind if it’s warm. I fill up the glass. Blue, red. I can tell them that he made me do it. The curtains flap in my face; they tangle around my throat; they take my air. My vision threatens to black. Mama would’ve said not to move ‘cause I always have been the sickly son, and she knows the look of someone between conscious and out cold, but I left Mama behind, and I go to walk straight and tall, and I stumble. His water goes dutifully to the ground. The glass goes with it. I see his lips move, but my hearing’s shot. He runs up to me, and my sight’s gone out too. I feel him, though. Over the sopping mess and the shards at my feet, I feel him, golden light boy who exists outside the toxic rewind in my memory, who carried me through years in that town. He escorts me safely to the bed and checks my feet for cuts. One wound spills onto him, and I let him touch me with red hands. His bony fingers, just as tired as mine, slide along my skin, and they are not tricks of the wind; they are flesh and blood. - Andy Hill

Chameleon, Zoé Knepp acrylic

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Wasteland, Kaden Ray colored pencil and marker

A

dense fog of gunpowder and wailing envelopes the battlefield of Okinawa, Japan. The sun hangs high as explosions throw young men onto their fallen brothers, and frightened soldiers scream as their enemies close in. Death reigns in this hellscape. A soft and calm voice cuts through the chaos of humanity, “Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, creator of the ends of the Earth.” This is the opening scene of Hacksaw Ridge, a powerful homage to the torture that is war. Hacksaw Ridge is based on the true story of Desmond Doss (Andrew Garfield), a God-fearing Christian boy who enlists in the United States Army during World War II. Doss stands out not because of his Appalachian accent nor the Bible he carries, but because he refuses to touch a gun. He is a conscientious objector who willfully enlisted into one of the most brutal wars in history. Doss wants to be a medic so he can save lives, rather than take them, and still serve his country. He fights to stay in the army, saying, “With the

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REPAIRMAN

the

Arjun Nag

world so set on tearing itself apart, it doesn’t seem like such a bad thing to me to want to put a lil’ bit of it back together.” The judge (Philip Quast) relents, saying, “Private Doss, you are free to run into the hellfire of battle without a single weapon to protect yourself.” Whether strolling through the forest or sprinting across the battlefield, Garfield never ceases to capture the passionate nature of Doss. While the camera focuses on Garfield’s face in the army court, his lips quiver with emotion; his eyebrows raise for emphasis on certain words, and at the most compelling moments of the monologue, he falls silent, letting his face convey what his words cannot. Mel Gibson, the director of Hacksaw Ridge, juxtaposes close frames of the suffering individual with wide, sweeping shots of artillery bombardments. In one scene, Doss and his platoon quietly enter a battlefield masked in thick, acrid smoke. The crippling silence is soon broken by the Japanese firing, and so starts a thirteen-minute, unfiltered scene of pure carnage: Limbs are blown off,

and battle-hardened men strangle the life out of boys. Gibson also highlights the individuality of humanity. This contrast is especially effective when Doss stops in the middle of an enemy camp to help a dying enemy soldier, giving the injured man a shot of morphine so that he can die painlessly. This moment of unification between two people on either side of a massive war contrasts all of the hate, murder and death. While cinematography is strong, the decision to include so many slow motion scenes was damaging. Slow motion is a common trope used to make moments more dramatic and grand, but the overuse dilutes their effect. One such unnecessary use is when Doss first meets his girlfriend: She moves at a snail’s pace, smiling and talking to people she passes. Time is meant to stop as her beauty captures Doss. However, the use of this technique in this scene is so cliché that it aggravates the audience. The music enhances even the most contrived scenes. Booming drums and varied string instruments magnify the

emotion, rather than becoming background noises. When anxious violins move quickly, they mimic Doss’s trepidation as he enters the battlefield. A solo despondent cello plays at a low pitch when Doss mourns his fallen comrades. Music also fades away in some scenes, constructing impact through utter silence. This absence of score happens during the thirteenminute Hacksaw Ridge battle. An elated flute and violin slowly rise in volume as Doss and his girlfriend kiss atop the scenic Virginia mountains, and the audience hears only his haggard breathing as he faces a lone sniper across the battlefield. The music develops the emotion of the movie, and even its absence leaves a lasting effect on an enraptured audience. In Hacksaw Ridge, Doss leaves home an innocent boy determined to help the world and returns a veteran who understands war’s ramifications. The acting, directing, cinematography and score together tell the story of a man in a broken world who wanted to put some of it back together Journalism

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instructions on l o v i ng a

poet

I.

It will start cautiously because he is a menagerie contained by only his words. Gentle, gentle, a tiptoe tumbling, be careful what you touch; every constellation you trace will breathe beneath your fingertips.

II.

His lips will burn your writer’s block: weekly ballads will become daily, and he’ll dance gold across syllables to you. You will start to pay more attention to the rivets in your spine, to the hollows of your pelvis; you will trace his sloping jaw with the tip of your pen, and he will smile for you.

III.

Until your poems look more like him, he will slip his fingers into the hem of your jeans, tug on your belt loops, bring you closer and closer and closer until your jigsaw hips explode golden.

IV.

As he kisses you under a dripping sky, you will wonder if you even existed before. He will remind you that before you are anyone else’s, you are yours.

V.

When he leaves you, his poems will stay in your closet folded up in a shoebox. Let them gather stardust. - Em Carter Drip, Teddy Perelli graphite

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Abigail Welch

rocked core to the

“ ayday, Mayday! Get everyone to the Hub. This is not a drill. I repeat this is not a drill.” Head geologist Jack Parker sprinted down the tubular shaped halls toward the Hub. He continued to scream into his earpiece, hearing his echo radiate through the main speakers and across the east bulb toward the other tubes. From the geology bulb, Parker had watched the tracking devices flatline like a heart monitor. Over the past 500 years, the beeps had slowed considerably from constant beeps, counting off seconds, until they stuttered to a stop not two and a half minutes ago. Parker had been tracking the Earth’s rotations and revolutions for the past decade, and now what they had all dreaded had finally come to pass: The Earth was at a standstill. Parker checked his watch, noting the holographic screen that rose into view, and realized that the devices still had full connection to the infrared signals. They had maybe ten minutes before the machines would start to go haywire. Parker flipped through his screens until he found the human tracker. The device was set up to connect the geology, meteorology, astronomy, botany, paleontology, physics and geography scientists in order to communicate quickly. Almost all of the head scientists were in their tubes on the way to the Hub, including head astronomer Richard Jones. The astronomy bulb was suspended in the sky and required scientists to cross through other bulbs before reaching the Hub. Parker spun to intercept Jones, “We’ve got a problem.” “I’ve noticed,” Jones said. “How’s the asteroid looking?” Parker asked, heartbeat racing. “You mean how’s Earth looking? The asteroid looks fine. We’re the ones stalled in the path of the asteroid!”

The Strange Lights, Andy Hill collage

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continued

rocked core to the

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Parker cursed softly under his breath. Of all the times for the Earth to stop spinning, it had to stop right when a mega asteroid was headed straight toward it. “Have you talked to Smith yet?” Jones turned and walked at a brisk pace as he filled in Parker on what the meteorologist had told him about the atmosphere problem, “Yes, he said the pressure in between Earth and the atmosphere was building. Earth’s climate has jumped almost ten degrees within the last year!” “Yeah, everyone has felt the temperature change. I just can’t figure out how safe we are going to be in the Hub.” “It’s almost a guess. I mean the atmosphere has never exploded before.” Parker rolled his eyes. Jones somehow was always sarcastic, even when they were all potentially about to die. Did the man have no fear? “Alex from physics thinks we are all going to be okay, but even that is a gamble. Have you sent out the international signals yet?” “Yep. They are riding on the backs of visible light waves as we speak.” “I thought so. I saw the streaks go out from the astronomy bulb a few minutes ago. We need to hurry. By my calculations, we have less than ten minutes before explosion. Let’s move!” The two scientists sprinted down the hall, reaching the Hub where the majority of Easterners had gathered to enter the underground bunker. The traveling tubes had brought the population at sound speed from all over the east coast to the largest International Earth Research Association site across the globe. Now they were all gathered

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in the Hub, the main research center, and were about to enter the bunker, the underground facility encased in iron that acted as a safety mechanism in emergencies. The two scientists quickly joined up with the remaining teams from different bulbs. “Alex, how’s the bunker?” Parker asked, out of breath. “Secure. They are getting ready to seal it as soon as we get word from the President.” “Great. Smith, any updates on the weather?” “The temperature has increased tenfold within the last hour. That expulsion is happening soon. Luckily, once this is over, we won’t have to worry about increasing global climates anymore-----if we survive that is. Temperatures will drop drastically. We’ll hit negatives for the first time in over 500 years! We also won’t have to deal with rainy skies anymore. Seasons will pretty much disappear, I think. We are really guessing at this point. Something like this has never happened before. We can also guess that precipitation will not occur after this. The troposphere will be gone. Or should be gone ... I think.” Parker took a deep breath. If they survived, weather and temperature would be the least of their worries. He turned to Jones, “What are we going to do about the freaking asteroid?” Jones replied calmly, but for the first time in his life, he looked nervous and wasn’t sarcastic. “We only have one hope at this point. The timing would have to be perfect. The force of the atmospheric explosion won’t be enough to push away the asteroid, and since the Earth is at a standstill, we are right in

the middle of the asteroid’s path. The Earth stopped spinning because the atmosphere is accumulating force to explode outward.” “Your point!?” Jones continued, “We are about to enter a lunar eclipse. If the moon lines up directly with the Earth and right in the path of the asteroid, it could absorb part of the asteroid’s impact. If the atmosphere remains intact, the moon and the asteroid will collapse the Earth. If the atmosphere explodes at the exact time that the moon and the asteroid start to fall toward Earth, the slowed asteroid and the falling moon could be propelled backward away from Earth.” “Wait, how is the asteroid slowed by the moon? Doesn’t that mean two objects are falling toward us?!” “The moon will receive part of the asteroid’s impact, slowing it, and the moon’s gravity will also continue to slow the fall of the moon and the asteroid.” Parker exhaled. They had a chance at living. “How likely is it that this will happen?” Jones didn’t respond. A small chance at living, but still a chance. “Oh, and precession will also happen early,” Jones broke the silence, “Because the atmosphere is exploding against an asteroid and the moon on one side, some of the atmosphere will revert back against the Earth and change its tilt.” The rest of the scientists glanced at each other in awkward silence. Alex, the head physicist, said, “Not entirely important in the day-to-day survival of the world’s population, but I appreciate the comment.”

“Okay, so assuming that we survive the explosion and the asteroid, is everything in place for the atmosphere?” Parker questioned, hurrying his words and checking his watch. “Yes,” Smith spoke up. “We have tubes that block all radiation, so for the time being, we will be using those. Unfortunately, we can’t go outside until the fake atmosphere can be set up. Eventually, the bubble will circle the globe and keep oxygen in and radiation out, but it won’t help temperature. Still working on that. Either way, if we live, we are stuck inside for a while.” “Thanks, Smith. All right guys, this is it. Life or death. Just so you know, I’ve enjoyed being your colleagues.” “Wow, Parker,” Jones commented. “Are we saving the world or winning a football game?” “I’m trying not to cry,” Parker snorted, a few tears trickling down. “The Earth’s relying on us!” “I know, and I’m ready. We’re all ready. Live or die.” The rest of the scientists circled around, nodding. They were all solemn, all ready to accept their fate, like martyrs going to the stake. “Countdown in 38, 37, 36, 35 ...” The scientists sprinted out of the room and toward the center of the Hub. They dove under the sliding doors as the doors boomed shut. 18, 17, 16... Parker ducked his head, shut his eyes and pulled his knees to his chest, surrounded by thousands of other scared, trembling individuals. The fate of the Earth and the survival of millions rested in their hands. There was no going back. 6, 5, 4 ... Life or death. 2, 1, 0

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THE ONLY CONSTANT IS CHANGE

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From left to right: Michelle, Jamie Ku For No Other Eyes, Andy Hill, photograph and acrylic Moody Self-Protrait, Ella Crookshanks, acrylic Yardwork, Spencer Page Day and Night, Reanna Brooks, collage Pedestrian, Maura Barilla

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Anxiety, Drew Tiedeman ink drawing

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He watches the ships float over the surface of the still lake, while the people repose on the grassy shore. Large trees grant shade from the heat of the sun, and he imagines himself lying beneath them. A child in a white dress stands, holding her mother’s hand. She watches as the dogs chase one another, weaving between the figures of the lazy public. Many of them sit gazing out over the water, and he thinks he’d like to do that too. He’d like to drop his cane, pick the white flowers that dot the shore and bask in the warmth of the afternoon sun.

POINTILLISM Now he is back in a white hall with tall walls and cold fluorescent light illuminating the object of his fixation, the painting. He stares into the empty blue eyes of the girl in the dress, believing they mirror his own. The closer he looks, the less he sees, and he worries he’s the same way. He stares at the dots of paint and whispers to the vacant hall, “This is all I am and all I’ll ever be.” - Remy Lucien

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more than a

CHURCH Emma Harrington

M

ulticolored flags flutter from the ceiling of the sanctuary of a brick church on Central Avenue. On a packed Wednesday evening, the world spins in the opposite direction for a while. This is no ordinary church, but rather the home of Galilee Ministries, an immigrant help center headed by Toni Hagerman. Guided by Christian principles, Galilee Ministries feeds, teaches and otherwise aids East Charlotte’s foreign newcomers. Galilee Ministries was founded by members of Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church who arranged English classes, a food pantry, and a community garden for the immigrants and the poor in the area. As the congregation aged, leaders at Saint Andrew’s faced a dwindling attendance, and “they literally couldn’t afford to stay open,” says Hagerman. The North Carolina Episcopal Diocese realized that Saint Andrew’s had actively supported the community as more than just a church. Diocesan leaders invited back Loaves and Fishes, which had managed the food pantry, and Central Piedmont Community College, which had sponsored English

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classes. The new center hired staff and re-established the community garden. Now “it’s still a church, it just doesn’t worship on Sunday morning,” but “it does all the stuff churches should be doing throughout the week.” Galilee Ministries has expanded its operations, and “now, the whole building is filled” with programs helping immigrants from Bhutan, Burma, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, Vietnam and other countries. The center still offers English classes, a food pantry and a community garden, but now it also provides counseling for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Catholic Charities runs an afterschool program, and the center also serves a free dinner every Wednesday. A group of Muslims meets regularly in a small prayer room, while a little congregation of Montagnard (mountain people from Vietnam) holds church services on Sundays. Visitors to the center can get help with anything from finding their way to a dentist’s office to filling out government paperwork. With the variety of people from different backgrounds, the old church exudes life and hope.

Operating for a few years now, the staff looks to the future. Hagerman estimates that the center serves between one to two hundred people each weekday. Leadership at Galilee Ministries plans to expand programs and maximize space to cater to the growing influx of immigrants. Interfaith conversations began in January 2017. Participants meet once a month and discuss themes such as hope, commitment and love. Hagerman explains that “the conversations will be a sharing of how different traditions encourage and ground these different values.” The staff is considering various uses for the nave, the largest but least efficiently used room in the building. “We don’t know exactly what to do with that yet, but we have some ideas.” Galilee Ministries embraces the sentiment of Matthews 6:26, which reads “Look at the birds ... Aren’t you far more valuable to him than they?” God promises to watch over his people, and he has kept his word, as Galilee Ministries feeds, teaches and otherwise aids the newcomers in East Charlotte, relieving these new Americans of worry

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Joe Son, Jamie Ku oil

Journalism

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sometimes

Sometimes I still forget how to breathe. I start to feel like I’m suffocating, and there's nothing I can do but let myself choke. That helpless feeling keeps me up at night, making me squeeze my own neck like I can reach into my chest and force air into my lungs. And sometimes my heart still beats too quickly, and I can only hold my chest, clawing, panting, scraping with too long fingernails and drawing too pink lines. Sometimes my hands still shake. I clench them into fists, pressing sharp nails into skin, leaving perfect crescents like the moon high in the sky on my palms. Sometimes I forget how to stay alive. When my panic decides it is time to attack with my hands on my throat and scrapes on my chest and crescents on my hands, sometimes I remember that under my window I have plants growing, and they don't need to remember how to survive. - Colette Page

Daisy, Olivia Guillebeau collage

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over

heels Outer Banks I will take her to live by the Atlantic. Every morning she will see the ocean’s great blue arms stretching across the horizon to welcome her home like my own. When the golden sun falls below the trees, it’ll reveal stars and a disco ball moon that we’ll dance under on the cool sand. Inner Banks Her freckles are like a map of miles of road, stretching into the swaying green grasses in her eyes and the soft dunes of her lips. Her hair hangs about her face like clouds tangled in sunshine, masking cerebral thunder. Piedmont Her laughter rolls like the hills, and her smile fits her cheeks like rivers fit the land. Her lips are state fair funnel cakes in October, leaving powdered sugar tracks across my collarbones. Appalachia She sits with her legs knotted in a breezy sky, keeping her gaze on the tide of clouds above us. I’ll only ever be looking at her. - Em Carter

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AMERICANish A girl explores elements of both American and French cultures-----fried chicken and Nutella, the back of a pickup truck and the Metro.

Zoé Knepp

Pretty in Gold, Brooke Drury collage

hen I was three, I learned to count and recite the alphabet just like everyone else. But there was one little twist: I did so in French. It was a great program-----a full-on immersion program in the heart of Los Angeles. I grew up eating Nutella-filled crepes at snack time and singing French nursery rhymes before bed. To top it all off, in 2007, my mother impulsively decided to take my sister and me and move to France. Again, nothing seemed out of the ordinary. By the time I was in second grade, I had memorized all the regions in France and their largest cities, but I believed there were fifty-one states in the United States and couldn’t place a single one. I rode my bike around town; the local boulangerie knew me by name and always had a fresh loaf of bread waiting. At school, I wasn’t known as the American, rather just another French kid who used to live in Los Angeles. The catch is that I am in no way French. Both my parents were born and raised in the United States and have no connection to France. The trouble started in middle school. A couple of years after I returned to my immersion school in the United States, I realized that I was the only full American in my class. I was teased for my PB&Js and for being slightly larger than the rest of my skinny European friends. Ironically I had a higher grade in French than any of my French classmates. The divide became more and more apparent. By high school, I had developed a Southern accent

courtesy of my mother. Certain words were followed by giggles from the back of the room and claims that I was a redneck, although I had never been farther south than Maryland. Out of fortythree families, mine was the only one that celebrated Thanksgiving. And by the end of freshman year, I had a new nickname, la Américaine. And then something unforeseen happened. I moved. Sophomore year I was dropped into Providence, an all-American, public high school in Charlotte, North Carolina. Picture entering a whole new country without a map, a country that I had always lived in but never experienced. I was introduced to wonders like fried chicken and Friday night football games. Other things remain foreign, like sweet tea and Chacos. In the beginning, I felt like a tourist in my own country, but soon I became a true local. Now you can find me cheering in the stands at football games or riding in the back of a friend’s pickup. I work at a diner and have adopted the word y’all into my everyday vocabulary. But if you look close enough, there are still signs of my French upraising. I blast French rap through my earbuds, and you’ll find the pages of Le Petit Prince sticking out from my book bag. I still practice too. If anything, French has made it easy to speak secretly to my mother without anyone eavesdropping. The beauty of my situation is that I’ve accepted that I will never truly have a set identity. For now, I’m content being Americanish

Personal Narrative

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AHMAD (sharp) CLEAN Lysol and Windex ... cracked hands and morals, humanity scrubbed off the floor. What makes us human is wiped away with a dishcloth. Phthalates and ammonia eating away empathy, but don’t fret, it’s lemon scented! “I came all this way ...” scuffed-up knees rapport lost clean ... - Annalise McCoy

Lillies, Jeffrey Shao watercolor

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JOEY CHONG

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The priest answered them, “Go in peace. Your journey has the LORD’s approval.” Judges 18:6 Everyone on the bus woke to the shrill feedback of the microphone. The student ministry director announced that we were less than an hour away from the hotel, so everyone stayed awake. Most people were watching the movie Mulan, but my friend and I were talking about everything we wanted to do during the weekend. Suddenly one of the two girls sitting in front of us turned around. “Um, would you mind talking quieter?” asked the girl. “Oh yeah, of course.” I whispered. She paused for a second, “Are you from the same country as Mulan?” “Are you asking me if I’m Chinese?” By this age, I was pretty used to being asked whether or not I’m Chinese. It was really just another day in the life of eleven-year-old me. “Yeah, I guess,” she responded. “No, I’m not Chinese.” “Oh...then where are you from?” “Well, I was born in New Jersey and basically spent my-----” “No, like where are you from?” I literally just said I was born in New Jersey, so I’m obviously from America: born in America, raised in America and like America. Yet to her, I was no American. “I’m Korean, if that’s what you’re asking.” “Cool, do you speak Asian?” she asked with a straight face. I was dumbfounded by the seriousness of her question. Do you speak American? “Well, I speak a little bit of

Korean,” I said. “Ooh, say something in Korean for me!” “I’m not really good at it.” “Please,” she begged. “I’ll stop asking you questions.” “Ok, fine. Naeun baboibnida.” “Wow! What does that mean?” “Oh you know, it just means that it’s nice to meet you.” Throughout the entire bus ride, she kept repeating it. She even told everyone her newly learned phrase at the hotel. What she didn’t know was that she was actually telling everyone, “I’m an idiot.” Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing because this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. 1 Peter 3:9 When we arrived at the resort, everything went downhill, and fast. My friend and I were devastated to hear that we weren’t in the same room. Five guys, the chaperone and I shared two rooms. Three of the guys, who were white, took one room, and the other included me, a black student, the pastor’s son and the chaperone. From that instant, I knew the trip wasn’t going to be as great as I expected, but I still had hope that I could make the best of it. After settling down and unpacking, I thought it’d be a good idea to check out what was going on in the other room since everyone in my room was reading. As soon as I walked in, I saw all of the boys lying around half-naked in

their boxers and playing on their phones, which technically we weren’t allowed to have. What did I get myself into? They just looked up to ensure that I wasn’t a parent, then continued telling dirty jokes that they were finding on their phones. I sat down against the wall away from the other boys and listened to their exchange. The conversation then shifted to racist jokes, but none of them dared to make any jokes about Asians with me around. So I thought they might like me if I started. “Why do you put your phone in rice overnight when you get it wet?” I asked. They all stared blankly at me. “Because an Asian will come overnight and fix it!” I laughed. After a brief silence, they burst out in laughter. I felt relieved now that they were finally including me in their exclusive group. But then they made Asian jokes too, and I unexpectedly became the target in the room. “Why can’t Asians get Bs? Because B is for banished!” “God tried to make everyone different, but he got bored by the time he got to China.” Finally I thought there was an end to this misery when one of the boys exclaimed, “Guys, we shouldn’t be making Asian jokes with him in the room!” The room fell silent, and I could breathe again. But then he said, “It’s totally Wong.” All of them howled with laughter. I tried to leave the room, but they blocked the door, and all I could hear was their mockery: “Ching.” “Chang.” Personal Narrative

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“Chong.” “Wong.” “Bong.” I finally backed away and sat down. After another twenty minutes, they exhausted their Asian jokes. Thankfully the pastor walked in to check on us, providing me with an opportunity to leave, so I darted out the door with him. I hoped that it would get better. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. Ephesians 5:11

CONTINUED

The following day, the entire youth group went to the first Christian concert series. I was excited to experience the worship and put the debacle of the previous day behind me. The lights dimmed, and the music started. The music seemed to capture everyone in the room with its raw emotion and powerful dynamics. As I looked around, I could see the three white boys from my group sitting two rows in front of me. I watched them with their hands raised, singing, “We are the church the world is waiting for. We’ve got love the world is desperate for.” If you guys are the church, I don’t know if I want to be part of it. Just the sight of their hypocrisy made me want to vomit. Then I knew it wouldn’t be the weekend full of excitement that I was expecting. Instead, it would be a weekend full of trial, trouble and tribulation. Hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil. 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22

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That evening, we all went to the water park where we were required to stay together as a group. Finally time to have some fun. But due to the long lines and crowded pools, our group decided to relax and stay by the café. The same three boys got up and left our table while our chaperone went to the bathroom. I asked, “Where are you guys going?” “We’re going back to the room to do some...stuff. Plus, the waterpark is totally lame.” The pastor’s son immediately interjected, “But our chaperone told us to wait here.” “Well then, I guess he’ll be surprised when half of our group isn’t here,” one replied. As they got up and started to walk away, one of them turned around and looked at me. “Hey, aren’t you coming?” I didn’t want to go with them, “I think I’ll stay and wait with these guys.” “Wow, what a chicken. Bawk-bawkbawk-bawk.” Another boy joined in, “That’s not the noise chickens make in China. They go ching-chang-chong.” They exploded in laughter. To end the torture, I left my seat and caught up with them. As we were walking, the boys leading the group missed a turn. I immediately asked, “Weren’t we supposed to make a left into that hallway?” One of them responded, “We’re going to take a little detour.” He led us to the lobby, and we sat in the lounge chairs. After a few minutes, a group of girls walked toward us, and the boys got up. Our two groups merg-

ed, and we started walking to the room. I didn’t like where it was headed, but I had nowhere else to go. I prayed under my breath that something, anything, would save me from this situation. As we got nearer and nearer to our room, I got more and more nervous. All I could think about was how much trouble we were about to get into. We finally reached our room, and one of the boys slipped the key into the slot and unlocked the door. But before he could open it, a voice startled us from the other end of the hallway. “HEY?” God, is that you? But from the end of the hallway, our chaperone was rushing toward us with the rest of the group. “I have been looking all over for you guys! You know we were supposed to stay together as a group, and you know you’re not allowed to go anywhere without my permission, so one of you better start explaining what happened.” Silence. None of them knew what to say or how to make the situation any better. Instinctively I tried to improvise an explanation. “Well...you see,” I explained, “we thought that you’d meet us at the room, so we decided to head back when we all got lost.” They all nodded their heads in agreement. “Luckily the girls ran into us and helped us find our room.” Our chaperone stared at my face and the others’ unconvincing smiles. His eyebrows furrowed, and we knew it was over. But he suddenly smiled and said, “Well, that sounds reasonable. Just next time, be sure to find an adult first.” The chaperone went back to his room, and

the girls left too. The boy unlocked the door again, and the others headed into their room. When they suddenly shut the door behind them, right in my face, I stood there for a second, trying to process what had just happened. Then I started to head back to my room. As I was leaving, I could hear them chuckle through the door. “Wow, I thought Asians were supposed to be smart.” “I can’t believe he thought that he could hang out with us.” “Guys, cut him some slack. He probably couldn’t understand English anyway.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:21 The bus ride home was fairly quiet since everyone was tired. My friend and I were glad to be back together for the remaining hours of our trip. Better yet, just the night before, the three boys got sent home for entertaining ladies in their room. We had watched all the movies, so the pastor decided to play some music, and the classic “Jesus Loves the Little Children” came on. “Whether yellow, black or white, they are precious in his sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world.” Does Jesus really love me? Suddenly I started to cry. Tears ran down my face because of Christ’s abandonment of me. They ran down my face because of the hypocrisy of the church. They ran down my face because I was Asian, not American. They kept running and running and running, and they never stopped Personal Narrative

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The blueberry bursts in my mouth as sharp teeth pierce the soft skin; a bitter, sour taste stains my taste buds in the same way thoughts of you stain my memory. The acidic juices burn the back of my tongue and my throat as I swallow in an attempt to rid myself of the poignant aftertaste. I fail. Although the taste sends shivers of regret and anger down my spine, the berries have become my favorite, as if the constant run of absinthal juice serves as a pleasant reminder of our time and memories together. It doesn’t. Instead, the berries remind me of my anger, fueling flames of hatred and annoyance that flare deep in my chest, toward myself rather than you, ill-tempered grief at my loss of innocent love and self-respect which I so willingly left in your hands. You told me you loved me though we hardly knew each other, and I, being naive and innocent and too excited at the mention of the idea, went through with the actions that I supposed went along with the words that poured from your mouth. Before long, I noticed the demands that made me uneasy and the bitter, acidic taste left on my lips when you kissed me. Before long, the constant run of absinthal juice burned my throat too much, and the hormones that made me naive and innocent began to fade. And I became the water that washed away the taste. - Allie Debe Last Four Years, Kaylee Market mixed media sculpture

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crystallized

Fearless Caroline Macurda

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M

arshmallow clouds dozed in an ocean sky. The air was ice, so cold that you could count every goosebump from your shoulder to your fingers. A lone cabin lived in the center of a valley of glaciers, and a crystal lake kept it company. There you were, perched at the bow of the rickety raft we called a sailboat. Shocks of lemon hair, bleached white by the long summer sun, whipped across your face. Flames sparked in your blueberry eyes as you leaned down to nudge the crystal clear lake with your nose. “Geronimo!” At almost-but-not-quite nine, you had more guts than I could muster in my eleven-year-old body. I shivered, a leaf preparing to fall, while you nosedived into hypothermic melting ice without a second thought. Standing there, completely exposed to the chill in nothing but my thin swimsuit, I wished for your fearlessness. I wished for a dose of whatever elixir made you either crazy brave or crazy stupid. Of whatever kept your bare feet from crystallizing on the deck

Running on the Moon, Jamie Ku colored pencil

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Katherine Welch

“D

on’t get mud on your shoes,” he says. He leaves his keys in the ignition as he climbs from the cab of the truck. The headlights throw shadows through stalks of hay, and the field glows orange like the flashlight pressed against my palm. The waterlogged ground caves beneath my boots and sucks at the straps. Ashton closes the truck door slowly, letting the latch click into place. My flashlight illuminates his dip-stained teeth. His lips stretch a half-second late, and his eyes move Dilaudid-slow in their sockets. I follow him along the edge of the pasture. He holds his arms out, brushing through the hay with unabashed amusement. He pauses to spit and tear a piece of twine from a mildewed bale, chewing the end with lazy interest while he watches me. He speaks to me like a handler to a spooked horse, iron will wrapped in cotton words. “Hurry,” he mumbles, yet he moves no quicker. Grasshoppers flick on my thighs and fall into my boots, crunching beneath my heels. The underbrush has been cleared away at the edge of the pasture. In the darkness, I can only make out the beginning of a trail, hard-packed and weeded. Ashton’s smile appears again, loose and smeared with pride. He doesn’t speak to me this time. He

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lumbers down his path, and I move in tandem, keeping him at the edge of my vision. He has spent hours clearing this trail, I know. It empties abruptly into a creek bed, and I am standing on a sandbank. Ashton sits on a log and digs his toes into the ground. He gestures to the circular arrangement of lumber and rocks. “It’s the living room,” he tells me. I meet his shuttered eyes and nod. “Okay, Ashton. Where is the kitchen?” He stands and points upward. In the scraps of moonlight, I see the outline of a tree house perched cautiously in the neck of an oak tree. Stepping through knots of ivy and creepers, I can see that the lumber is dark and cut roughly. Under the flashlight’s beam, nails flash silver. Ashton takes great pride in his nails; there must be dozens of them embedded in the tree house. He used to build beautiful birdhouses and carve strong benches. Now, his voice floats behind me, incoherent and insistent. He shows me how he has hammered driftwood to the tree trunk to make a ladder. He climbs into the tree house, each movement deliberate and respectful. When he reaches the top of the ladder, he turns with great precision and sits on the platform, swinging his legs back and forth over the side. His calves

collect splinters with each kick, but he is giddy and unresponsive. He swings his arms around his torso in a wild gesture. “Look at my tree house,” he commands. Ashton’s voice drops to a whisper, and his eyebrows float together in a futile attempt at severity, “It is Micah’s birthday present. Do you think Micah will like it?” The log living room, the upstairs kitchen, the creek-----all for his little brother. He knows he has been away too often and that he has left far too many cigarettes in the trailer. Micah deserves a gift that erases the burns on the kitchen counter. He promised he would find a great present, and now he has made Micah his very own tree house. I grab Ashton’s legs to stop them from collecting more splinters, and I tell him that the tree house he built for Micah is beautiful. He nods with satisfaction, and it is time to go. I have to help him down his ladder again. The blood trickling from his calves stains my jeans. I lead him through the pasture and back to his truck, the keys still dangling from the ignition where he left them. “Don’t get mud in the car,” he mumbles as I climb into the passenger seat. “Don’t spoil the surprise”

Roars & Whispers

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Mors Sanctorum, Arjun Nag

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Lydia Seo, Jamie Ku colored pencil

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BARBED WIRE &

delicate cranes

Vast Korean prairies rest between craggy Sepo-deungpan mountains. Barbed wire fences trace the green hills’ outlines, clashing with the open teal skies, and sweet red-crowned cranes balance precariously on landmine signs. Here, the bird song is eerie, and few people ever glimpse the land’s delicacy. It’s a war zone, pristine in nature but active and explosive whenever, if ever, it must be. The countryside is haunted by the brutal axe murder incident, underground military tunnels built for armed invasion of Seoul and soul.

The Bridge of No Return spans the thin line between Southern freedom and Northern communism. The ribbon stretches taut----a single exposed belt separating two antagonistic nations. But there’s still the Freedom Bridge with thousands of colorful ribbons tied to the surrounding barbed wire, softening its sharp spikes: peace and unification scrawled in ink. A marked countryside: forced serenity, a few miles wide, where swaying trees thrive and the cranes’ voices echo; it’s a dangerous natural reserve embroidered by continual rivers, mountain chains and deadly landmines. - Hannah Magraw Poetry

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Back Then, Andy Hill acrylic

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within the clone Alan Islas Malanco

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yper-flexibility. When my sister was diagnosed, she was ten. I sat there confused, wondering what it meant. My mother said, “It just means that your sister is a bit more flexible and can do some things you may not be able to.” My sister and I are only one year, two months and sixteen days apart. We are close, often giving the illusion that we are twins. However, when it came to knowledge and experience, our age difference created an invisible fissure that separated us: She was always ahead in her accomplishments, always given more grown-up privileges. I was angry that she got all the attention based on birth order, and my accomplishments were always lackluster in comparison. My nine-year-old self wailed, throwing every single stuffed animal around his room in a frantic fit. The doctor’s warnings about the dangerous consequences of hyper-flexibility fell on deaf ears. He could not hear the doctor explain that his sister had scoliosis and that she would have constant pain in the muscles around her torso. Why did she have everything? Over time, I realized that there was no way of stopping her from taking things away from me; she had a one-

year-two-month-sixteen-day head start. I could not go back in time to raise my grades, start school before her or say my first words before she did. The only thing I could do was become at least as good as her in something, anything. I picked the hallmark programmed into her DNA: her flexibility. After school, we would go straight to ballet practice and then karate, but when I decided to be as flexible as her, I started doing extra credit. I locked myself in my room and repeated the stretches. I was so desperate to become more flexible that I hurt my ligaments a couple of times, impairing my ability to walk for a couple of days. But that did not matter. A few months later, my sister and I competed in a karate tournament. We began as usual with a cartwheel followed by a series of punches, then a one-handed cartwheel followed by more punches. Usually, this was the part of the routine where I would perform several punches with precision and then finish off in a mountain pose. Because of her flexibility, my sister would do a high kick and fall into a split. The crowd would go wild at the amazing things my sister could do, and like a cheap knockoff version, I would accompany her.

But this time would be different; I wouldn’t be a copycat anymore. I was not born to be her twin. As we finished our last round of punches, instead of dropping into mountain pose, I stood up and kicked just as high as she did. I lowered my leg, going lower and lower until I could feel the back of my right thigh and my left calf touch the floor. My body reminded me that it wasn’t made with this much flexibility. I felt pain in my hips, and my ligaments tightened, trying to stop my body. Nevertheless, I dropped into the split just as low. I was not a copycat. We were competitors, and even with her biological advantage, we were equally matched. If I had stopped because of the pain, she would have won, proving that all my hard work didn’t matter and only the circumstances of my birth would determine my destiny as a lesser version of my sister. When I fell into the split, I started becoming my own person and stopped being her copycat, her clone, her twin. Even today, my sister and I are very close, and I still share some behaviors with her. But unlike a clone, I can reach beyond what she can do and surpass her if I desire Personal Narrative

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A HUSHED ACHE IN

BACKYARD

Dew has not yet formed when my toes touch the cobalt grass, and I feel instability careen through dazed limbs and a restless mind. My open mouth remembers the summers of cold coffee and cellophane but hungers for any morsel of understanding. There is one lamp on the street: buzzing, blinding, bewitching, unwilling to give light to the cement beneath it. I lift my arms up but cannot reach, like it is the moon, and I am banished to the ground of frigid Pluto with miles of work between us to be breached. On all sides of me, either phantoms or insects haunt my eyes, spirited when the night only allows me the use of naked touch and instinct. In the day, white houses line the streets like row upon row of graves. In the night, I can’t see them, so nothing is there. In the night, I can feel the slope of the road incline more and more, asphalt into gravel into the dirt of a looming mountain crowned by clouds and stars. My blood, accustomed to dripping slowly through me like oil, races on the oxygen of a thinning atmosphere. As I walk, I am brought ever closer to the sky. - Andy Hill

Blue Boy, Rei Pennington marker and acrylic

Poetry

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Hannah Magraw

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ases and large paintings of yellow sunflowers invite Charlotteans into the family-owned Sunflour Baking Company, the sunniest place in the Elizabeth neighborhood. In 2014, Jack and Umarin Parrish bought Sunflour from its founder, Debbie Bartok, expanding the business’s success with the 2016 opening of their Dilworth location. Umarin, a professional pastry chef, has experience in kitchens around the world, while Jack has the financial background needed to run the business. The two “share a love of baking, a passion for excellent service and a keen interest in contributing to the local community.” Sunflour is Charlotte’s original exhibition bakery, allowing people to step up to the glass wall of the kitchen and watch the preparation. The employees make everything from scratch each day, and as Front of House Manager Mary Bohlen says, since “everything is homemade, it tastes so much better.” Parrish’s favorite item is a Southern classic, a breakfast combination of bacon, egg and cheddar cheese on a cheddar biscuit. He says, “It’s the ultimate Saturday morning breakfast. Bohlen’s favorite comes from

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the opposite end of the spectrum. She loves the vegan chocolate chip cookie because “it’s chewier” than normal cookies. She even breaks down the myth that vegan items aren’t as good as traditional ones, saying that at Sunflour, one “cannot tell at all that they’re vegan.” The baking company also pours the highest quality organic coffee from Durham-based Counter Culture Coffee. All of the coffee beans are single-origin and roasted the same day that they’re delivered. The shop offers a large variety of delicious items: everything from organic teas to red velvet coffee cake, fresh soups and flakey croissants. Sunflour is involved in the community. Parrish is proud that “everything is made fresh where possible from local ingredients” because, as Bohlen states, “we definitely feel the need to support other local businesses.” The baking company boosts the North Carolina economy and keeps money local. Moreover, Parrish says that vendors in the area are simply “better” and allow him to provide “higher quality products.” At the end of each day, Sunflour does even more to support the community by donating all unsold food to

the Salvation Army. Bohlen explains that “it’s just very important to Jack” because “he’s a very nice soul,” and Parrish himself says that he does it because “charity is important.” He wants his business “to support the community in all three hundred and sixty degrees,” and it certainly does from stimulating the local economy to feeding Charlotte’s hungry. The baking company supports the area in yet another way, exhibiting the work of local artists. Parrish started selling Charlotteans’ art “on the rail,” a long shelf with the display rotating monthly, “to keep the place fresh and new.” Sunflour promotes the artwork on social media accounts and hosts receptions for the artists. Being promoted on the rail has become so popular that the wait list is over a year long. Parrish is confident in the artists and says, “You never know what you’re going to find, but you know you’re going to love it.” The scent of freshly baked items and the beautiful art create a warm environment at Sunflour. Parrish has made the store “a sanctuary” and “the kind of place where you feel comfortable.” The lime walls, chalk menus

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Helianthus, Teagan Wilk acrylic

and bouncy music invite customers to “relax, spend time and escape the world.” Open twelve hours a day, the business attracts all types of people: moms treating their young kids to lunch, students picking up snacks after school, college students and small business owners. Parrish says, “There’s a customer for every hour of the day,” making “it a really gratifying business dynamic.” Bohlen says that to her it’s a “good family atmosphere, neighborly and just very welcoming,” and the workers “try and keep it bright and happy for everyone.” The Espresso Your Love tip jar is stuffed with appreciation for the decor, friendly management style and close-knit relationship with the community. Parrish says, “We really just don’t think of ourselves so much as in the bakery business, or the coffee shop business or the restaurant business,” but rather, “it’s the make-people-happy business.” Sunflour Baking Company is more than a place to eat. Woven into the tapestry of the Charlotte community, it supports local artists and farmers, donates to charity, provides a quiet haven and, yes, offers great food

Journalism

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stellar

DEATH

Skyline, Seth Fernandez

The universe grew lonely and afraid since all it knew was infinite darkness, so it cut and ripped its flesh to make pockets of light. These clusters of bright and warm essence became beacons of hope in a once dreary world. The stars were happy and safe; protected by their mother’s shade, they grew brighter and brighter with each passing day, but finally, it was time to die. Soon bloodcurdling screams ripped apart the sky. “How could you?” howled the stars as they were brutalized from the inside out. The universe replied with a laughing bout, “My children, did you honestly think that I could bring you into being and not teach you life’s true meaning? Everything begins and ends in pain, so I wanted you to feel the same.” And so the stars died the most horrid of deaths as a reminder of their conception from their mother’s breath. But the universe forgot the most important part, for every ending creates a start. - Omotayo Fasan

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OUR SINCEREST THANKS PATRONS

Anytime Fitness - Promenade on Providence The Barilla Family Bojangles’ Star Enterprises Inc. Lane and Dick Carter Rob and Kim Carter Wes and Margaret Carter

BENEFACTORS Mary Margaret Dineen

CONTRIBUTORS Carol Benson Richard and Jennifer Carter Stephanie Hatley Vivian and Brian Hill Mary M. Johnson

FRIENDS

Ashwini Kathak Dance Academy Jack and Barbara Barry Jayne C. Bass Mrs. Arthur Bright The Brown Family Aaron and Robyn Buckley Chandler Family Zhou Q. Chen Usha Chopra Varsha and Anil Chopra Ben Clark Jen and Dan Debe Kelly and Brandon Dill

Dilworth Coffee at Plantation Market Fenwick's Restaurant Emma Grace Harrington JC Builders Inc. List or Look with Lisa Richard Magraw

The Magraw, Andes Family Mckee Dental Punit and Leslie Sarna The Scheper Family The Thomas Family Ann Watkins and Debbie Davis The Welch Family

Marcy and Jeff Knepp

Jack and Betty Laney

Bob and Jean Jones Kevin and Donna Jones John and Diana Kalis Jenny Kleven Knepp Family

Karen and Tom Racioppe Diane Spicer Leo W. Uicker, D.D.S Andrew Walters

The Dongre Family John Emerson Anne Hoffman Abbie Kenley Andreas Lotz Matthews Community Farmers’ Market Leah Mell Kevin Meier Patrick Neville Cherie Page Madeleine Page Marilyn Polis

Michele Reich Hugh and Mary Lou Roberts Anne Roberts Dile Nasfat Shehadeh Joohyun Shin Ken and Cindy Thomas Tatyana Thulien United Communities Association Jordan and Kerri Vardon The Vigor Family Beth Worthington Sangeeta Yadav Indicates former staff member

Roars and Whispers has served as the voice of Providence High School students for twenty-two years. Each year reveals new talents in our writers, artists and photographers. Each year also presents new challenges that we could not face without the support of our teachers, administrators and community. We thank the students whose verbal and artistic prowess defines the magazine. We also thank Dr. Harrill and our school administration; Ms. Glendenning and Ms. Simpson who

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inspire beautiful artwork; Mrs. Lazo who guides us through publication’s financial labyrinth; Ms. Stockett who generously allows use of her workspace; Whitney Schuner at Barnes & Noble; Dawn Sigmund at ArtFest of Matthews; Jessica Daniel for her invaluable counsel and Herff Jones for providing the medium for our expression. Most importantly, we would like to thank Ms. Marva Hutchinson who brings together the publication. Without her unwavering support,

counsel, guidance and dry wit, the magazine (and we as individuals) would not reach and surpass the level of award-winning excellence our community has come to expect. Though the journey to publish this issue of Roars and Whispers has ended, we know that the journey of our voices is far from over. We hope that these words and this art stay with you long after you close the magazine. Our publication is kept alive by your readership and support, and for that, our gratitude exceeds words

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EPILOGUE FIREFLY CAPITAL OF THE WORLD Fireflies freckle the cheeks of a sharp night sky. Bright highway lines fracture the moon’s glow, or maybe it’s just the clouds cracking closer and closer to the ground. She traces my knuckles and calloused fingertips. She puts her feet on the dashboard. We are flying between the mountain crests, under miles and miles of sky and an endless cloak of fireflies. Her blue-green eyes catch the flies’ kerosene glow, and the wind from the open window tangles her hair. She’s laughing, shifting, dynamic, never static. Every day, she is new. Yesterday, I learned that she feels safe driving through the countryside, but only when she isn’t alone. Today, I learn that she snuck in between my bones, gentle fingers between baby-bird-hollow ribs, lifting me out of rust. Tomorrow, I will learn that she is teaching me to trust my caged hips and my barbed-wire thighs. Her gentle touch is a vine between iron gates, and that is enough. - Em Carter


Profile for Roars and Whispers Literary Magazine

Roars and Whispers Volume XXII 2017  

The 2017 Edition of Roars and Whispers Literary Magazine

Roars and Whispers Volume XXII 2017  

The 2017 Edition of Roars and Whispers Literary Magazine

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