Small Things 56
School of the Holy Child 2008-2009
Footnotes presents Small Things
"Great things are done by a series of small things brought together." â€”-Vincent Van Gogh
School of the Holy Child Literary Magazine 2008-2009 54
Uncle Phillip’s Porch25 Hilary Price The door creaks The sunshine smiles in my room I wake to loud laughs I crawl downstairs, to see my father and uncle’s silhouette The sweet summer air entices me I open the porch door and sneak outside
Editors Nabila Betances Nikki Black Erica Cuscina Katrina Kohn Olivia Pecini Hilary Price
Faculty Advisor Ms. Povec
I am comfortable The grass tickles my feet Only here for a month However, It feels as though I never left When everything is wrong. August is always right.
Embraced by Apollo’s warmth, I smile. I begin to swing. It is the porch that I love. To encapsulate, the porch is a story A porch of generations A porch of history A porch of survival
Above all, a porch of limitless laughter The porch is his memory. Mr. Phillip Reed’s inescapable memory His remarkable resilience A porch that never breaks This will be his remembrance. The Porch Of love, laughter and family 25. Porch: a covered platform usually having a separate roof at an entrance to a building
A Life Lesson in Hair24
A letter from the Editors
Hilary Price I like the top of your “thought machine” It’s fun to play with I wish it would make you beam But the heritage revealer leaves no myth She sings “curly, curly, curly” You are Red To defend, I interject with something surly I wish their words dead They follow each other’s cue Her, his, and their racist remarks ensue I have “white girl hair” but a “black booty,” they suppose They speak more of your “Jew Fro” and nose And that I am not “Black but fair” We are quite the pair I love when your 6 feet and two inche figure is bashful You brush the cute coils back with your handsome hand. Embrace your culture; Convention is dull Withstand
Dear Curious Reader, This small book you hold in your hands contains the greatest art of the young community of Holy Child. We, the creators of Footnotes,1 have walked a great distance, filled with small steps, to complete this journal. We advise you to use this edition of Footnotes, Small Things, as your guide to the creative journey of the students of School of the Holy Child. As you take small steps through each page, each poem, each piece of artwork, each footnote,2 let what you encounter take you down different paths: some lonely, some exciting, some tragic, some funny. Good luck, inquisitive traveler.
24. Lesson: a thing learned by experience
1. Footnote: an explanatory or documenting note or comment at the bottom of a page, referring to a specific part of the text on the page. 2. All definitions are from dictionary.com
Table of Contents
Creative Writing Lonely, by Nikki Erlick …………………………………………………………………… 8 The Truth About Me, by Ali Skamangas ………………………………………… 9 Tag, by Kathleen Samuelson …………………………….………………………… 10 An Election Story, by Katie George ……………………………..……….……..… 11 Another Mile Down the Road, by Lauren Manzino ………………….…… 13
Make It Last 23
At First Glance, Anonymous …………………..……………………………………… 14
Love, by Elizabeth Schanne ……………….………………………………………... 15 Bite Marks, by Erica Cuscina ………………………………………………………… 17 Esmera and the Fairies, by Mackenzie Pendergast ……………………… 19 Shoes, by Ali Skamangas ………………..………………………………………..…… 20 The Tourist, by Christine Jahnke ………………….…………………………….. 22 Disney Princess, Anonymous ………………………….……………………………… 24 alternative journeys, by Olivia Pecini …………………………………….……… 25 13, by Erica Cuscina…………………..…………………………………………………… 26 My Year, by Alecia McCarthy ………………………..…………………………… 28 The Sky, River, and Ground, by Nikki Erlick ………………………………… 29
The days go by slowly but the years go by fast. And everyone says to enjoy it while it lasts. They say that adulthood isn’t too far away. And there are more and more choices that you’ve got to make. Life may deal me a few tough cards. And I may not play them well from the start. But it’s never too late to fix what went wrong. Sometimes I want to quit but I keep moving on. The world can be a rough place when you’re out on your own. But if I look closely enough I know I’m never alone. The days go by slowly but the years go by fast. Sometimes life may be hard but I’m going to make it last.
LOL, by Ali Skamangas ……………………….………………………………………… 31 Facebook: Making Friendship User-Accessible, by Meredith Piro … 34 Spilling Secrets, by Nikki Erlick ……….…………………………………………… 37 An Unexpected Destination, by Kathleen Samuelson ……..…………….38 Eight, by Elizabeth Schanne ………….……………...…………………..………...42 Palabras, by Nabila Betances …………..…………………………………..……….44 Flight, by Kathleen Samuelson ……………………..…………………………..….47 Make It Last, by Nikki Erlick …………………………………..……………………..51 A Life Lesson in Hair, by Hilary Price ………………………………...………….52 Uncle Phillip’s Porch, by Hilary Price ………….………………….………….....53 6
23. Last: continue to function well or to be in good condition for a considerable or specified length of time
Table of Contents
Visual Art Photograph, by Katelyn Racanelli ………………………………………………..8 Photograph, by Nabila Betances …………..……………………….…………...10 Photographs, by Elizabeth Infanger ………………………….……………….12 The Eyes, by Nabila Betances ……………………………….………………………..14 Rose, by Danielle Riverso ……………………….……………………………………...15 Painting, by Lina Matykas ………………………………..………………………….16 Fear, by Nabila Betances ………………………………………………………………..17 Drawing, by Olivia Pecini ……………….…………………………………………...18 Digital Art, by Olivia Pecini ………………….…………………..………………...21 Photograph, by Rachel Vallarelli …………………………………..…………...23 Photograph, Anonymous ………………………………..…………………………...24 Photograph, by Nabila Betances ………………………………………………...25 Painting, by Sophia Golec …………………………………………………………...27 Photograph, by Elizabeth Infanger …………………………………………...29 Painting, by Lina Matykas …………………………………………………………..30 Photograph, by Katelyn Racanelli ……………………..……………………...33 Photograph, by Katelyn Racanelli ……………………..……………………...36 Photograph, by Katelyn Racanelli ……………………………………………...41 Painting, by Lina Matykas ………………….……………………………………….45 Charcoal Drawing, by Olivia Pecini ……………………….………………...46 Photograph, by Nabila Betances ……………………….……………………….49 Photograph, by Katelyn Racanelli ……………………….…………………….49 Photograph, by Rachel Vallarelli …………………….………………………...50 Digital Art, by Olivia Pecini …………….…………………………..……………..52 Photograph, Anonymous ………………………………………….………………….54
Cover photography by Olivia Pecini Back cover photography by Katrina Kohn 50
Lonely3 Nikki Erlick If you’ve sat alone by the window, Watching the rain drip down the glass, Then you know what lonely looks like. If you’ve stuck out your tongue, And caught the last snowflake of the year, Then you know what lonely tastes like. If you’ve walked into a meadow, And sniffed the dying flowers, Then you know what lonely smells like. If you’ve heard someone crying late at night, And you sense that they’re filled with sadness and fear, Then you know what lonely sounds like. If you’ve had a friend turn their back, And leave you alone to sit down and sob, Then you know what lonely feels like. And if you’re reading this poem by yourself, With no one to share your thoughts with, Then you know what lonely is.
3. Lonely: lone; solitary; without company; companionless.
Katelyn Racanelli 49
The vast expanse of land beneath us Unfolds like a meticulously woven quilt As we pass over it. Fields the color of emerald, Rivers winding their way throughout the land like a ribbon, And the houses like little buds Within a grand bouquet of verdant. Other parachutes Of every color imaginable Linger on the horizon And float leisurely, Over the snow covered mountain tops. A breathtaking piece of art.
Still. Undisturbed. Serene. Exquisite. Peaceful. Amazing.
I am living in the moment. Cherishing every second. Wishing it would never end.
I close my eyes And enter this place inside of myself That I didn’t even know existed. I inhale the fresh air through my nose While letting my imagination soar And my worries slip away.
The Truth About Me4 Ali Skamangas Some may call me Allison, some may call me Alex But the truth is, my name is Ali, and it’s spelled A-L-I. Right now, I am frustrated In five minutes, I am likely to be merry And about 30 seconds after that, I will probably be glum. The simple truth about me is that I am inconsistent. I am a hardworking procrastinator that swears by the motto, “cave laborem” I am dramatic but have trouble expressing my own emotions I am tenacious and irresolute I love chocolate I am quiet with a love for volume I love vanilla I am easily satisfied but request only the best I am heavy I am realistic, I am idealistic I am light I am independent and need the assistance of everyone around me I am a non-believer with an immense amount of faith I was easily invited yet very intimidated by this once blank Word Document. The number of times I have backspaced, crossed out Do they represent the little I know about myself? Am I really inconsistent, or is 16 years not enough to know? There are truths about me that are perpetual: I will always love the Yankees I will always love the color red And my name will eternally be A-L-I.
Up here, The possibilities are endless. There are no limits. 4. Truth: The quality of being true; as: (a) Conformity to fact or reality; exact accordance with that which is, or has been, or shall be. (b) Conformity to rule; exactness; close correspondence with an example, mood, object of imitation, or the like.
I have never felt so… FREE. 48
Tag! You’re it! You’re mine forever! My love. My life. My everything. I’m there for you. You’re there for me. We’ll always have each other.
1,2,3 Go! I run as fast and as hard as I can down the hill Fighting the resistance of the parachute I am Dragging behind me. Soon, I begin to feel my feet lift off the ground And the tug of the parachute As it opens up above me. Take off.
You are my soul mate My best friend. There is no doubt, We are meant for one another. Nothing in the world can come between us. Nothing can tear us apart. Tag! You’re it! You’re mine forever! If only love was as simple As a childish game of Tag.
The wind gives us a friendly push forward Over the tips of the evergreen trees And the small canyon. Gradually we ascend Higher and higher So we are hovering Thousands of miles above the ground. My feet are dancing in the breeze and Loose pieces of my hair dart in circles And tickle the back of my neck. We are flying.
The sky, A magnificent shade of blue And ahead of us, There are thin wisps of clouds The most pure shade of white I have ever seen.
An Election Story Katie George
22. Charcoal: the carbonaceous material obtained by heating wood or other organic substances in the absence of air
My father was born and raised in the South, the only child of two Southern Baptists in a predominantly white section of northern Mississippi. In his twenties he moved to New York City where he changed his accent, his religion, and his political views. While normally I would never think of using politics to portray my family, I feel this story gives insight into the world that my father came from, a culture that is still a part of who I am and my family’s history. On Election Day 2008, after mailing in his absentee ballot a week prior, my father was in Mississippi on one of his routine visits with my grandmother, still living there. On that morning my father was driving back to my grandmother’s house with Lily Mae in the passenger seat. Now, Lily Mae is a wonderful older black lady who has been working as a housekeeper for my grandmother for decades. During the car ride, Lily Mae, fresh off the polls, could not help but express her enthusiasm to my father about the election. What is remarkable about Lily Mae is that her last name is Hobson, which is also my Grandmother’s maiden name. Lily Mae, whose ancestors had taken the name of their former slave owner—my grandmother’s ancestors—on a farm not but 20 miles south of her current residency, was now sitting in the passenger seat of a car with my father discussing the possibility of a black man being elected president. Their conversation spilled into my grandmother’s living room, and, seeing my grandmother reading there, they decided to subdue their enthusiasm and lay aside the conversation. Politics was a subject scarcely mentioned around my grandmother for it almost always led to disagreement and awkward silences. That afternoon, after her beauty parlor appointment, my father drove my grandmother to the town courthouse to vote. After parking the car they made their way toward the courthouse, passing the enormous Confederate memorial placed directly in front of the building. Inside, my father glanced around the great hall, pausing at the sight of two water fountains stationed on either side of the hall. Those very same white porcelain water fountains had been there the first time my father had ever gone to vote. It had been in 1968 11
and the signs over the water fountains reading “colored” and “whites only” had only been removed a few years earlier. Yet here he was, in 2008, on a day that held the potential of making history—history that had seemed almost unimaginable in that same hall forty years earlier. Back in the car my grandmother turns toward my father and asks, “Don’t you want to know who I voted for?” “Well only if you want to tell me Mother,” my father replies, “but I have a pretty good guess.” “I voted for Obama.” She said, eyes facing forward, “I did it for Lily Mae.”
Even at rest, the fight existed. Those moments I fell asleep with worries lingering this complex brain that owned me could not be counted, Simply putting it in numbers would be—just too simple. And that was the problem, I am Nabila Betances, Simply complex, A lover of love, A warrior of peace, A word contortionist, An art guru, A sensitive individual, Who cries when necessary. Nothing lasts forever and all wars end, The enemy ended up winning leaving Nabila with no pain, Much gain. Fearless and united with the parts of her that never seemed to connect. Why? You ask. Because she could. I did.
20. Palabras: Spanish for words21 21. Words: a single distinct meaningful element of speech or writing, used with others (or sometimes alone) to form a sentence and typically shown with a space on either side when written or printed
Elizabeth Infanger 12
Another Mile Down the Road
Undefined random pointless circles of scrambles of palabras (words) roamed through my head fighting for words of my own identity, Palabras, yes words, I’m a Latina fighting constantly finding the words that stick, the words I spit, combining all wit To finally click, so HIT IT: Yes, a breath-collaboration. And that was the unity I felt that day, the hot one, laying on green listening to the blue skies above speak unity Union square that was the location that clearly made sense.
She retraced her steps every so often just so she could reminisce on the journey that brought her to the ground on which she now securely stood. To the place where she defends her spirit, Her soul against the harms of the storm, the corruptor. The corruption struck her hard like lightening in the sky.
I sat just watching lovers, loners, dealers, musicians of all races come together to smile with their eyes squinted just slightly to block the sun The same sun we take advantage of, on those hot days. The fresh henna ink on my shoulder put everything into perspective that simple Tuesday, That birds are the symbol of freedom, Able to fly aimlessly for release, On shoulders, the canvases of my body, those photographs and yes, in the the sky too.
The rolling of her tears down her skin fulfilled her soothed her rescued her. And they lingered like dew on the morning grass, like Indian summer.
I am Nabila Betances, daughter of a strong single mother who refuses to let people undermine the abilities of her ability to raise those two crazy children Yes, with attitudes, Nabila and Marcel. There is no weakness anymore, the tears of no father are over, We are not alone—only a triangle, The three of us we will be. My self identity was distorted, Constantly struggling from the inside out—the internal battle, Where pain was used as ammunition and love was used to combat it The warriors living in every heartbeat fought long hard hours non-stop to cease this love, The enemy. 44
She retraced her steps, every so often. To console her undying spirit, to relight her flame, to remind herself to give that which she seeks to dare others to dream like she did, cry like she did. Then maybe, just maybe she’d become less and less absorbed with the world that was and break free of the shadow cast by the storm, corruption pick herself up and run. Mindfully, intuitively, unwaveringly. She needed some kind of wonderful, a whirlwind of wonder and pigments of truth to emancipate herself from the past. With each and every heartbeat she became further and further… Soon enough you’re going to think of me and how I used to be. 13
At First Glance5 Anonymous At first glance I'm sixteen, but shyer than most I tend to stay quiet, take it all in and just coast Afraid of being judged, I avoid making waves But there's another side of me that tries to be brave When I'm dancing, the audience stare doesn't bother me I forget that I am shy once the music sets me free My family and friends, despite time or age, Always see the girl on stage To them I'm just me, crazy but still kind And now you know the true me in less than ten lines
The Eyes6 Nabila Betances
5. Glance: a brief or hurried look 6. Eyes: used to refer to someoneâ€™s power of vision and in descriptions of the manner or direction of someoneâ€™s gaze
I was so happy. These girls actually liked me! The day went on as perfectly as I'd hoped. Then came lunch and recess. One of the girls wasn't very good at the game we were playing at recess, and this girl Julie, who was on the girl's team, started yelling at her because she dropped the ball. I wasn't very good at keeping my mouth shut when others were being bullied. Without thinking I stood up for her and yelled at Julie for saying such things to her friend. The girl was crying and Julie was in shock that anyone, especially the new girl, would stand up to her. In that moment she decided that the new girl wasn't going to cut it as her friend. I wasn't going to cut it as her friend. Now you need to understand no one stands up to Julie and anyone who does is cut down immediately. Julie proceeded to turn all the other girls in the group against me, including Brygida and Kellsie. Everyone started making fun of me and my pink backpack, even the girl I stood up for made fun of me. I started to cry. This was worse than my old school; at least there I had one friend to talk to. Now, I had no one, and everyone thought I was a crybaby. All I wanted was to go home and cry until my body shook with pain. I ran to the bathroom to avoid anymore humiliation. Five minutes later two girls walked into the bathroom. I recognized that they were from my class, but they hadn't been with the other girls. One was tall with scruffy reddish brown hair and a pink face, while the other was short and Indian looking. The tall one came over to me and comforted me. She informed me that Julie was always like this and it was nothing personal. She just wanted to be popular, and that was the only way she knew how. I didn't believe her, but it was nice to have someone comforting me. "Come and play with us. We don't talk to the other girls unless we have to, and if you leave them alone they will leave you alone too. Just stay out of their business, and you might even find that you like it here. Oh, by the way, I'm Megan and this is Christine!" I wasn't very good at staying out of Julie's way, but Megan and Christine put up with me anyway, and the three of us became inseparable at school. I guess my first day of school was not so horrible. I made two BEST FRIENDS. What more could one ask for? 19. Eight: equivalent to the product of two and four; one more than seven, or two less than ten
Eight is an odd age. I know they tell you it is even, but they are wrong, it should be odd. When you are eight your life changes. You are no longer that cute little first or second grader. You are just the obnoxious immature little third grader who is expected to grow up faster. I turned eight the day before school started. I was entering a new school for the second year in a row. I was so nervous. My mom drove me to school because she wanted to make sure I knew where to go. She parked in the parking lot and dragged me out of the car. I did not want to go. Would these kids be mean to me just like the other ones were? I had a pink backpack with some famous singer on it. Would they make fun of me for that? My mom pulled me towards the entrance of the school with me begging her to take me home. I did not want any new friends, I had one at my old school and that was enough. It did not matter to me that she changed schools too. I would live. I knew the people there. I knew what to expect from them. They weren't all mean to me, just a couple were. Maggie was nice. She could be my friend if I tried really hard. But no, my parents had made this decision without even telling me. I never got to say goodbye. The school yard was filled with nameless faces. I scanned the crowd in hope that maybe one face would seem familiar. Then there they were. I was lucky. There were two familiar faces in the crowd! Brygida and Kellsie from soccer were there. They were really nice. They would be my friends. They were my friends, so of course they would be nice to me and make everyone else like me too. I was set. This school would be perfect. I would have lots of friends and there would be no more Brenna to bully me. Now that everything was perfect there was no more need for my mom to be there. She was just a reminder of my previous insecurity. I told her I would be fine and that she could leave now. She went to give me a kiss, but I was too embarrassed to kiss her so I simply gave her a hug. Then I ran to Brygida and Kellsie, who were so happy to see me. I was very shy, but the girls in my class were so excited to have a new girl that they included me in the game they were playing.
Love. how does one describe it. It's perfect. It's brilliant. It's the person you feel whole with. The one you can't live without.
You think that will never be you. but it will. Love will hit you when you least expect it and then you'll know. True love will only hit you once and when it does you will know. And you will do everything in your power to keep it. You'll understand when it hits you and if it has then you already know. Sometimes you think you love someone, but they don't feel the same way about you. But in actuality if they don't love you then what you feel isn't true love and something better will come along and sweep you off your feet. Sometimes you realize you love someone who doesn't love you back, but who wants to be friends with you. This is good because it means you may have found your true love.
Rose Danielle Riverso 15
If they change their mind later in your friendship then that's it. You've found your love. But if they don't ever return the feelings someone else will come along and catch you by surprise. They will be your love and the other will just be your friend. Never Settle for ANYONE! If you are settling then you are not truly in love, but one day you will fall Head Over Heels for someone and if you have already settled you will regret it. SETTLING will only lead to pain and suffering. LOVE leads to passion, happiness, fulfillment and a high that no quantity or quality of drugs could EVER give you!
and run, as fast as we could, the opposite way. “Is everyone ready?” They all nodded anxiously. “Okay, here we go.” I clutched my sweaty hand around the door’s handle and gripped it as tightly as I could. “1, 2, 3, 4, 5—” “Everyone, wait! We’re pulling into a Shell station. I think he’s getting gas!” The whole time…a gas station… I couldn’t believe it.
You will just know and you'll never let it go Love. how does one describe it.
Katelyn Racanelli Lina Matykas
18. Destination: the ultimate purpose for which something is created or intended 7. Love: a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection
year younger than me—especially girls like Maggie and Kathryn. Eliza, the little sixth grader, seemed to be in a daze as she stared out the window with her back to us all. I noticed her shoulders starting to move up and down ever so slightly, then, more considerably. Eliza was crying, and I was just about on the verge of breaking down into tears myself. Instead, I decided that it would be better if I took control of the situation by calming everyone down and thinking rationally for all of us. “Everyone, listen. We can’t assume things unless we know for certain they are true because then we are only hurting and, in this case, scaring ourselves.” “Oh, c’mon Charlotte. There are no positive assumptions here because there is nothing left for us to assume other than things that are bad. We’re on a bus in the middle of nowhere, heading to what seems like somewhere far away from where we’re supposed to be, and the person who is in control is a complete stranger. He could be anyone. I mean, how do we know if he’s even a real bus driver? Or, that he’s even trying to get us back onto our regular route?” I stared back at Charles in shock. He was right. We continued down this unfamiliar road with the bus driver still leaving us no hint as to where he was taking us. The only thing I did notice was that the speed of the bus had picked up significantly. The situation was only worsening as far as I was concerned, and we needed to formulate a course of action. “Alright guys. I think it’s come to the point where we should start thinking of what we can do to escape. Does anyone have any ideas?” The five of them grew very silent, stopping their nervous clamoring, obviously realizing the severity of the situation. “How can we even think about escaping when there isn’t a way for us all to leave quickly except by using the doors in the front?” Maggie said hysterically. Kathryn buried her head in her hands, Eliza turned toward the window and started whimpering, and Daniel banged his head in frustration against the seat in front of him. It seemed hopeless. Then, Charles’s eyes beamed and he broke into a wide smile, whispering four words, “the Emergency Exit door.” We all just stared back at him unbelievingly. Our escape was literally right behind us, and we never even thought of it. There was no time to come up with a complex plan to divert the driver’s attention, to figure out a way to gather our stuff, worry about safety, or even think about our plan thoroughly before carrying it out. We decided to count to ten, open the door, and jump, one by one, out of the moving bus 40
Bite Marks Erica Cuscina Bite marks on my lip from the words i never said too tired too close too scared too far too much Bite marks on my lip reminding me of what we'll never be because i'm too tired to try because you're too close to breathe because i'm too scared to lose you because you're too far for it to matter because it's too much at once Staring in the mirror at the mark on my lip remembering those nights those nights when i wanted to say goodbye but you pulled me close and i melted away biting my lip to cage the words i will never say
Fear Nabila Betances
bus made an abrupt turn, causing me to slam face-first into the filthy window pane. “What is he doing?” I thought to myself. Mike turning like this was particularly unusual. I’d ridden on this bus for the past two years of middle school and this part of the ride was normally the calmest in terms of motion. Although there were other roads to turn on to, we normally followed the road straight for about 20 minutes. I edged towards the aisle in my seat and noticed that everyone else was looking around with the same questioning look on their faces as me. Then something else popped into my mind— Mike had not said, “Sorry kids!” with a slight chuckle like he normally did when he made a jerking or sudden movement with the bus. The queasy feeling in my stomach returned. I stood up in my seat to see if Mike was getting ready to tell us what was going on, and that was when I noticed it wasn’t Mike in the driver’s seat but someone else…a different driver. A substitute. I contemplated the situation in two ways: 1. The bus driver made a wrong turn, but he would eventually figure this out and take us back to the main road. 2. He was trying out a short cut. However, after continuing down this winding, and what seemed like unending road for about 10 minutes with no indication that we were going back to where we came from, I started to get a little panicky. I should have been home safely in my house, but instead I was riding through an unfamiliar area with a person whom I didn’t know and didn’t trust controlling where I was going. It seemed as though I wasn’t alone in my state of panic because I noticed that everyone else’s eyes were darting nervously from one another to the front of the bus. I signaled to the four others sitting near me to move to the back by Daniel so we could discuss what was going on without risking the bus driver overhearing us or suspecting anything. When we all sat down in the last two rows Maggie immediately gushed, “He’s kidnapping us!” Normally, I would roll my eyes when Maggie made a comment like this because it always sounded so ridiculous. The difference was that this time, it was possible she wasn’t that far off. Like always, Kathryn mindlessly agreed, “Maggie is so right you guys. He is going to take us somewhere really far from here and kill us so that no one will hear us when we scream!” I couldn’t believe that I was actually getting the chills from things that were coming from the mouths of girls in the 7th grade who were a whole
An Unexpected Destination18
Esmera and the Fairies8
It started out like any other ride home. Maggie and Kathryn across the aisle, exchanging snippets of the newest gossip. Daniel in the last row, staring in a daze at the seat in front of him with his headphones on so loud that I could hear the music playing from where I was sitting. Charles, two rows behind me, engrossed in the most recent game Nintendo came out with. Eliza, sitting in the seat behind me with her head buried in the latest Harry Potter. Then there was me, watching as a group of kids on the school’s lawn catapulted themselves into piles of golden and copper colored leaves that were delicately falling from the trees outside the window. Seeing them enjoying themselves gave me this sense of joy, but at the same time, there was a feeling of uneasiness and discomfort somewhere in the pit of my stomach. Maybe it was the turkey sandwich I ate for lunch. The engine gave a thunderous roar as our driver turned the keys in the ignition, and the doors gave an ear-splitting screech as they closed shut. I peered over the top of my seat expecting to see Mike, our bus driver, switching on the radio to his favorite station—96.7. Except today, he was staring straight ahead, not even glancing at the radio perched precariously by the window. A memory of something that had been evading my memory caused me to all of a sudden jolt upright from the slouching position I was in. Mike was not wearing the Yankee cap I was accustomed to see him wearing every day. Instead, he was wearing a black hat with a logo I couldn’t exactly distinguish from my seat. The enthusiastic greeting I normally received as I climbed the steps and entered the bus had been missing too. This seemed strange. I moved towards the edge of my seat so I was closest to the aisle and searched everyone else’s faces to see if they noticed the apparent difference in Mike’s behavior and appearance like I did. It seemed as though Maggie, Kathryn, Eliza, Daniel, and Charles were so consumed with what they were doing that they didn’t notice the peculiarity of the situation. I sat back in my seat, relaxing at the others’ unresponsiveness. Several minutes passed as I stared fixedly out the window, observing the scenery of the woods unfolding rapidly, as if on fast forward, alongside the bus. Then, unexpectedly, the
Esmera, look into your pool so shallow, Reach out your hand and touch mine! You with years so naïve and callow Look into the pool, look at it shine!
We will dance until we fall dizzily down We will sing till our throats become sore We will laugh till our giggles do drown And feast till we want no more! Never will our joyfulness falter Never shall anyone scowl Our mood not even the rain shall alter Our delight of human, fish, and fowl Esmera, you’ll glow with our brilliance Esmera, you’ll fly on our wings You’ll soar with our resilience And sit in seats of kings May no human dethrone you, No enemy destroy the strength we give May you always let light show through Find the reasons for which, with greatness, to live Esmera, look into your pool so shallow, Reach out your hand and touch mine! You with your years so naïve and callow, Look into the pool, look at it shine!
8. Fairy: a small imaginary being of human form that has magical powers
As I clenched nervously to the arms of the chair, I looked down at my feet. They were seemingly incomplete and lifeless. I glanced at all the satisfied people who had found their perfect fit. The wait was eating at me from head to socked foot, but I reassured myself that in the end, I would be as content as those around me. Though my mind tried to keep my eyes from looking, I peeked at the dreaded doorway only to find the man I had been waiting to see yet secretly avoiding. My heart dropped at the sight of his empty hands, and as his head shook in despair, I knew he understood the misery of my reaction. That day, I left the building without my two confidants—the incomparable laced brown leather fourinch heeled booties that I would never see again. There is a certain excitement that rushes through me at the sight of an unfamiliar shoebox; I am curious as to what could be offered inside. Every outfit I wear, with the exception of my school uniform, is centered on my choice of shoe. Sometimes I open the doors of my sanctuary and stare at my shoes, each pair with its own story. The soles of my espadrilles are scuffed from the cobblestone streets of Seville, and my Converse sneakers still hold sand from the previous summer’s camp adventures. Every shoe I have is a representation of my eclectic personality, and a portion of myself is within each sole. When I slip on a pair of hushed ballet shoes, my body becomes almost uncontrollably lithe, and I am a dancer with an urge to land a rond de jambe. When I slip on a pair of old sneakers, I am an athlete (or at least I attempt to be). When I put on a pair of pumps, I exert confidence and walk as though the world is my runway. In a way, my shoes are my conviction, assuring me that I will always stay supported and grounded. Sometimes, I sit in between the open doors of my closet and try on every shoe, recalling the last memory I shared with it. Occasionally I come across a shoe handed down from one of my older siblings, but when I put it on, it does not seem to fit or look right. A shoe handed down has already experienced a specific way of life, and to try and alter its previous background is almost absurd. I quickly take off the ill-fitting shoe and slip on my worn out black flats with a torn tip and missing heel.
We used to spill our secrets to each other late at night. We’d tell every thought inside our heads until we felt alright. Nowadays these secret moments come less and less often. And lately I’ve been wondering why these good times have been stopping. Is it because our lives are that uneventful? Or that instead of growing closer we are growing more resentful? I can feel the bonds between us break. Instead of giving we only take. Some people would blame it on “growing up.” It seems to me we should have known enough. The friendship we formed is too precious to lose. But we’re growing farther apart with every path we choose. Sometimes when I’m alone I call you up on your phone. I know you look at your Caller ID and ignore it when it’s me. But I wish you wouldn’t hurt me so. There’s so much more I wanted you to know. I still need you and you still need me. Are you too proud or stubborn to see? We used to spill our secrets with each other late at night. But unfortunately those nights are gone, and that’s just not right.
17. Secret: a mystery
Facebook has truly revolutionized the idea of friendship. In the 21st century, friending, unfriending, limited profileing, and requesting relationships are easy with this handy website, which also minimizes uncomfortable face-to-face contact. Conversations are a thing of the past, and good riddance to awkward situations. Just use Facebook!
Whether a shoe has Capezio taps, springs, blades, heels, pennies or spikes, there is one for every person. Every shoe has a history, and with every history a different person. As I walked out of the building feeling defeated by the shoe department, I realized that the shoes I fell in love with didn’t come in my size for a reason. It wasn’t meant to be—the soft leather and flawless structure of those shoes were just not meant to walk in my path. Never buy a shoe that doesn’t fit. And if it does fit, well, buy it in every color.
16. Facebook: a publication for an organization, such as a school or business, which helps members identify each other; also, an online version of this with profiles including a picture, name, birthdate, interests, etc.
9. Shoe: an external covering for the human foot, usually of leather and consisting of a more or less stiff or heavy sole and a lighter upper part ending a short distance above, at, or below the ankle
The Tourist 10 Christine Jahnke The streets in this place are hard to navigate for a tourist like me Street Signs with names only visible when I take the time to look up, interrupting the flow of human traffic While my eyes look up I realize I am enclosed by corporate offices many more than ten stories high The skyscrapers dwarf my six-foot tall stature making me feel like an ant As a tourist I am not used to these surroundings and long for wide-open space
My eyes act like a camera’s lens as I try capturing this new environment, which is almost like a jungle In this concrete jungle human beings are in a rush and care only for their well being which contains components of Darwin’s theory of Natural Selection I try to take it in, but my heart is reluctant to leave its home back in the Great Lake State believing that it will lose a piece of its self As a tourist I am captivated by the unfamiliar sights and sounds of this place while everyone around me continues in a rapid pace looking down at the ground and not up When I open my mouth to ask a question or for direction my accent appears to puzzle native ears They often ask for clarification with “Don’t you mean” As I nod my head in agreement I think to myself “That is what I just said” As a tourist I stand out from the natives and begin to feel uncomfortable because of how different this place is to the place that is my home
It is almost time to pack my suitcase and to become a tourist on a college campus My morals and beliefs are packed securely in my suitcase, however there is still more room My mind and heart have been opened by what I have seen, heard, and experienced during my visit in this place 22
is confirm this status, and they’re engaged. Perhaps they tire of each other eventually, and one of them wants to break it off. No worries—just cancel the relationship request. The other person doesn’t even have to accept! Facebook gives you such a wide range of options and such ease with which to choose them, it’s almost impossible to imagine that people actually used to interact with words and mannerisms. Facebook is also useful for dealing with unwanted relationships. Although having upwards of 350 friends is nice, sometimes things just get awkward, and there’s nothing else to do but break it off. It’s rare, but it happens. Thankfully, the geniuses at Facebook have come up with an easy, hassle-free way to do this. It’s simply called “Unfriend.” That’s right—just a few clicks! There’s no need for an awkwardly worded conversation or breakup phone call. If someone is breaking up with a boyfriend, girlfriend, fiancé, or spouse, they only have to cancel the relationship status and then click “Unfriend.” If someone is simply breaking off a friendship, it’s even easier! All they have to do is click the Unfriend button. Although I definitely trust every single person who is on my list of 363 friends, and I appreciate all their attempts to ‘enhance our friendship’ by commenting on my wall sixtyeight times in a day and noticing every little status change, once in a while people just want to limit interactions with their friends without actually unfriending them. Well, fortunately there is the Limited Profile tool! This allows people to control exactly what their friends can see about them. It’s easy, hassle-free, and works wonders. Another nifty feature Facebook boasts is Top Friends. Friends are hard to organize, and sometimes the hierarchy is difficult to define. However, Top Friends allows one to organize their friends in order of how much they like them. If someone doesn’t like a friend, he or she would completely take them off the Top Friends list. If someone only sort of likes a friend, he or she would only put them at the middle of the list. And finally, one would put one’s best friend at the top of the list. This makes it much easier to communicate to one’s friends exactly what one thinks of them, and it eliminates second-guessing or any doubts said friend may have. For example, if a friend isn’t sure that they are very good friends with a person, all the friend has to do is check that person’s Top Friends. It makes things simpler, without the hassle of unnecessary direct communication. 35
Facebook: Making Friendship User-Accessible16 Meredith Piro The other day, I checked my Facebook account. This wasn’t exactly an alert-the-presses moment. Checking a Facebook account isn’t an unnatural occurrence in teen life. In fact, I check mine just about every six and a half minutes… on a slow day. This process involves checking my “Friend’s Statuses” to see what my “Friends” are up to, maybe updating my “Top Friends,” confirming or denying some “Friend Requests,” and the list goes on. The reason this particular Facebook-checking stands out in my memory is because I decided to click on something different for a change. I decided to take a look at my list of friends—all 363 of them. By looking at this ridiculously high number, I was suddenly reminded of something. I finally thought about how many of them care. Sometimes, I take for granted that I’m incredibly close with these 363 people. The girl who was in my brother’s summer program whom I never actually met—she cares. I am reassured that on a bad day, I can turn to any one of these people—my cousin’s best friend’s sister, for example— and know that he or she will be there for me, no matter what. Facebook is an incredibly useful tool for something that in the real world would be considered ‘stalking’, but in the virtual world is merely known as ‘enhancing friendships’. For example, one of my friends was ecstatic that this guy, whom she’s never really met but kinda sorta possibly might like, ‘cause her best friend’s brother’s girlfriend said he was really hot, commented on all 60 of her photos of herself in the mirror that she had put up. She also received 30 messages from him in a time frame of fifteen minutes, all some sort of variation of “hi, i think ur pretty.” She feels that this relationship is really going somewhere. And if she does muster up the courage to ask him out, she doesn’t even have to speak to him. All she has to do is click one button—“Relationship Request”! She can choose between “It’s Complicated,” “In An Open Relationship,” “In A Relationship,” “Engaged,” and “Married.” And if he accepts, they have a date! Or an open relationship, or anything, really. And maybe one day if he wants to propose, there’s no ring, there’s no pondering for days about how to go about one of the most important events of his life—just change the relationship status! All his girlfriend will have to do
My open suitcase is not even a quarter way full even after I pack the souvenirs and memories that I gathered during this trip It is a bittersweet moment zipping up my suitcase I am excited to move on and continue filling my suitcase to its brim, but the natives who befriended me, accepted me, pushed me to bloom in this place will never be forgotten As a tourist I see life as a journey and although I am not given a guidebook for these places, my heart is my compass and my mind is my tour guide as I journey through new places
10. Tourist: a person who is traveling to or visiting a place for pleasure
Disney Princess Anonymous I always wanted to be a Disney Princess Like Jasmine and find Aladdin Or maybe Cinderella trying to find her Prince I always wanted a fairy godmother A group of furry friends to help me Living the fairy tale every girl wanted
after this paper all have a better understanding and appreciation for what humor is and what it does for every individual. And for those who were not affected by this paper— oh please, don’t make me laugh.
I always wanted to have pretty blue eyes Or maybe strawberry blond hair Perhaps a cute laugh that lit up the room I always wanted a perfect smile Or maybe a perfect complexion or The perfect body, like a model I wasn’t born with a crown I wasn’t born with an evil step-mother I wasn’t given the perfect body Or the cute little laugh Or a tragically perfect life And I might not be perfection, but that’s okay with me. So, I might not find my Aladdin, or my Prince I might not have everything in the world. But that’s okay with me, because I don’t need that I don’t need furry friends to help And I don’t need to be a princess to have a fairy tale.
15. LOL: an abbreviation for laughing (or laugh) out loud (used in email); laughing out loud, little old lady, lots of love, lots of luck
on her 30th birthday. This scene from the popular sitcom “F.R.I.E.N.D.S” is an example of an innocent humorous action that turned into something unintended. After receiving the card and already dreading turning 30, Rachel cries at the sight of it. Though the card is lighthearted, it goes to show the effect humor has on someone like Rachel, someone very sensitive on the subject of her age. What about in not-so-funny situations, like politics? There are countless amounts of parodies of Sarah Palin, portraying her as a ditzy and unaware candidate. Are these videos really humor? We have now stepped into the world of satire. “The satirist shoots to kill while the humorist brings his prey back alive and eventually releases him again for another chance” (Peter de Vries). Though satire and humor may both result in a “ha ha,” they come about the laughter in different ways. Satire may be funny, but only due to mocking someone or something else. Sarcasm is similar because though it is usually witty, it is sometimes full of cynicism and mockery. These words have deceived us all along but have helped us understand the class humor is put in. Humor is in almost every hour of my everyday. The bus driver sings aloud in a deliberately loud voice to drown out the noise of the bus, and this is humorous. My teacher cracks a joke, also humorous. I come home and realize I don’t understand my math homework…well, not so humorous. Whether it is unintentionally or intentionally humorous, it occurs in everyone’s lives almost everyday. How is it also that ‘humor’ can be comforting and relieving? When someone jokes with a friend about how they both didn’t do well on an exam, how is it that by somehow making it humorous it becomes consoling and a seemingly lesser deal? In times of pain, it is as though even a split second of humor can bring life back into the air, almost as if it were a reminder that sorrow cannot be perpetual. The uniqueness of this word is because of its innocence. Think of humor as a small child, someone that usually sees only the good in situations. Sometimes though, children unknowingly upset others, just like humor can sometimes do. Though it may be ambiguous, humor’s characteristics set it aside from any other word. My assignment for everyone is to see how many times a day a smile is shown or laughter is cracked. Try and find where humor appears. After giving an extensive and rather dazzling definition, this task should be easy. Think of what humor is, and the confused words that think they represent humor. Hopefully 32
alternative journeys11 Olivia Pecini The road’s pavement has turned to rubble, Walk over it and you bleed. Attempt to read signs but you fumble, It’s futile, so simply leave. You know you can’t just turn, You made it this far already. What is another scrape or burn? March on proud and steady. However, no one else thinks as you, They only see the obstacles ahead. But you see beyond to what you pursue, Following a promise someone once said. Fall back—you betray yourself, Move on and you leave your home. Away from violence, you would have good health, But in those far off boundaries you’re left to roam. You go down that path, Knowing you have not made goodbyes. But you’ll be away from corrupted wrath, With a chance to stop loved ones’ cries. So here I go one step at a time. Gone mad? No, I’ll call it my fate. Through the mix of revulsion there, I climb. I’ll meet you at heaven’s gate.
Nabila Betances 11. Alternative: existing outside traditional or established institutions or systems
Everyone has that one memory of when they realized they had to grow up; that one age when they were thrust into adulthood, past the point of return. Like Wendy in Peter Pan, leaving Neverland, fated never to return, once you have passed that point it is hard to ever regain your childhood innocence. Thirteen was like that…And it just happens suddenly. One day you’re an innocent, carefree, simple thirteen. Then you become this heavy-hearted, awkward, hurting thirteen. You forget what it was like not to worry, to think that nothing bad could happen. How could you have ever lived like that? I remember thirteen. It was eighth grade, and movies, and dances, and basketball in the circle, and friends, and ‘everything is okay in the end’. And then…it was different. November 25th defined thirteen… Someone is shaking my shoulder. Who is shaking my shoulder?—Mom? Mommy, what time….what’s wrong?— She’s crying, and I don’t know why. It’s still dark outside; winter is starting to chase autumn away.—Honey…get up. We need to go, we need to go.—I feel my feet moving, sliding out of bed, pulling on a sweatshirt; but I don’t remember controlling myself. I’m just going through the motions. Why is she crying? It’s Saturday. I don’t wake up this early on Saturdays. Why is the car started?—Mom! What happened?!—Silence. Thirteen was silence too… She pulls me towards the car with her eyes; I get in the backseat.—Erica…baby…It’s Dominic…—And then she’s crying. Oh God…no. Why is she crying?—What happened?— Confusion. And it was confusion… And then she’s talking about an early morning call, and they need us, and he’s gone. And I don’t understand anything she’s saying. We’re walking up the steps, and just walking in; not even knocking. It’s dark, the lights are off, the blinds are closed. Crying…and what is going on? This is not happening. I’m hugging her, and she’s holding me tight and my mom is crying, and she’s crying, and…now I’m crying? —Erica…—A voice from behind me. Not even really a
So, a guy walks into a bar…what does he say? Hopefully most already know that this man will say “ouch,” but for those who don’t, that is quite pitiful. This lighthearted humor, though the punch line may be hackneyed, can make the ice crack just a bit on that awkward first date, or even make the strained teacher smirk, if only for a second. What would the world be without humor? Would it slowly implode with boredom? My ingenious hypothesis on this question guesses that yes, the world would persistently implode in a state of monotony. What really is the definition of this word? Is it a knockknock joke, or is it when a person is running and trips falling flat on his face? During this somewhat brilliant dissertation, I shall clarify for all the true definition of humor. We will explore the origin of “humor,” elucidate the class into which it is thrown, and later discuss the uniqueness of this fabulous and all around hilarious word. When thinking of humor, some images that come to a person’s mind are perhaps monkeys in pajamas, someone who has ripped his pants, inanimate objects given humanlike qualities and Will Ferrell. Well, what if I said that the first four things that come to my mind are phlegm, black bile, yellow bile and blood? One may think that I’m deranged, but agree with it or not, one’s humors are his four basic bodily substances. In ancient Greece, a theory was made that one’s human personality was based on his level of humors. So does this mean that Will Ferrell is exceptionally funny because he has a high level of black bile? Sorry for not having the ability to answer that question, but he and I do not have that intimate of a relationship for me to know about his level of fluids. To maintain a healthy emotional and physical state, one’s humors must be balanced. If a person grew ill or had an unstable emotional state, his humors were said to be unbalanced. Think about this statement; could this be true? Is there a thing as too much humor? There are thin lines between what is humor and what can result in the total opposite of laughter. Luckily, there is an approximately 100% chance I may be elaborating on this point in the next paragraph. “Happy Birthday Grandma! It’s better to be over the hill than buried under it!” read the card Chandler handed to Rachel
voice, but more of a whisper. Whispers from a boy not ready to be a man, terrified of what he could never live up to. I wipe my eyes, and I walk up to him. I wipe his tears and I hold him. I just hold him, and I don’t let go. And I’m strong…strong for the both of us. I’m strong for all of us. I don’t cry, I’m not supposed to cry. I have to make him smile. How do I make him smile? But it’s gone…that smile… and just like the sun on a cloudy almostwinter day, I don’t know where it’s gone. And tears, like rain, soaking into my shirt. He’s only a little bit taller than me now… nowhere near the towering young man he’ll become. So I am strong for him now…Strong. Thirteen was being strong…It was being strong for the ones I loved…and it was being strong so they didn’t have to be. And it was holding my best friend in my arms and realizing I didn’t know how to fix this…I didn’t know how to make him smile. Yesterday we were playing basketball and talking about some dance, and about going to the movies. And today… today I’m thirteen and we’re crying. And it’s not going to be okay. I remember thirteen.
Sophia Golec 14. Abstract: existing in thought or as an idea, but not having physical or concrete existence
12. Thirteen: equivalent to the sum of six and seven; one more than twelve, or seven less than twenty
The Sky, River, and Ground13
So you assign this poem And tell me to write about something that is true or about me Do you know how hard this is? I’m more complex than even I realize And to put a lifetime of experiences on a piece of paper is beyond these real eyes
The sky looks down on me, so vast and so blue. The birds fly so swiftly, and beautifully, too. Their wings flap with rhythm and keep to a beat. I want to join with them, the music’s so sweet. The river flows by me, so quiet yet loud. It bubbles up softly, as it comes around. Fish poke their heads up and blink in the sun. I want to swim with them, it looks like such fun. The ground lies beneath me, with support that’s so strong. Small creatures below crawl slowly along. They can roam where they want and must feel so free. Oh please, I beg them, give some freedom to me. I want to move mountains, as I travel afar. I want to go to the moon and bring home a star. This wall that surrounds me I want to break down. But I’m happy now with my sky, river, and ground.
What’s true to me? My identity, my friends, my family Anything but a lie is true to me, you see? Love – I’ve felt its warmth and that is undeniably true to me I’m a music head – yeah my choice in songs varies but if you don’t like it, I guess you aren’t true to me What’s unique to me? I can easily say you’re unique to me But I’d be lying. I can easily say my style is unique to me But I’d be lying. I can easily say the collector’s edition high top money pattern chuck taylor converse I have are unique to me But I’d be lying. Wait.. No…that’s actually the truth. So let’s get to it I can easily say I’m unique because… I don’t know. I can easily say im boldcrazyoutspokenfunnyweirdLOUD and I wouldn’t change it But I don’t know if I’m unique Cause in the back of my mind I’m always thinking There’s another one of me Somewhere But the thing is…I just don’t know where 28
Elizabeth Infanger 13. River: a natural stream of water of fairly large size flowing in a definite course or channel or series of diverging and converging channels