approach the end of the school year, the Student Publication class is publishing our final issue on the theme DAY/NIGHT. In this issue, we focus on students’ reflections of the past year. It has been a long school year packed with memories and fun times with friends, teachers, and families. Here you will find displayed, through story and art, the growth and maturity of the SMIC student body. We hope this issue closes the school year well and that next year, the Student Publication team will continue to entertain you with “Sharks Digest.” As the editor in chief, I would like to thank you all for supporting us throughout the year. We have learned so much from cooperating as a team. The experience could not have been any better, and we could not have been more blessed to work with all your wonderful submissions! Have an excellent summer and we’ll see you next year!
r’s ito e Ed t
- Sherri Lin
po Ma gaz si Ma Edit ine A Dir Publ naginor in dviso tio ns Edi ecto ic Re g Ed Chie r M tor r o lat ito f S rs. Ar t& s o f De ion r Y her An Ent f D sig s S un ri L na esi n us ru in All ert gn Sh an Ph en ain Fic a u L M r a tio me No i nfi nE nt Cli iki Y on Yu u cti dit M ffo am o o Se ega rd G ad n Co r s edi Ed ver An ren n T an a t ite Ph ors Li nie a D sou d o by tog K nd T on :
Sh rap ep a S an ar h: A nd in D un on K Yu riss er u ie so Ta n n O
page i open at the close ------------ Serena Dong Sunglasses --------------- Susan Liu
10 page Summer's breeze --------11 Sweet, icy feel -----------
Table of Contents
Sharon Yu Susan Liu
12 Looking back -------------page freedom --------------------perfect getaway --13 the that song --------------------
page i am free ------------- Kepin Du keep an eye on him -------------------- Miki Yamada
the window page cut loose-------------- Susan Liu
---------- Linda Sun
-----------2 nostalgia removed -------------
tick-tock --------- ---- Yunru Phua
The ducks ---------- Albert Xu Orange cat -------- Kevin Yu blossom --------- --- Krissie Tan track --------- ------- Krissie Tan floral --------- ------ Krissie Tan page The end ---------------- Sharon Yu
The woman who lived in spain ------------ Atsushi Yamada life in a shoe -------- Miki Yamada
page Do you
remember? ---------- Megan Tsou in the morning ----- Sharon Yu
Serena Dong Megan Tsou
summer flower ------- Kimberly Tan black flower ---------- Kimberly Tan frog ------------------------ Peggy Chang hands all over -------- Jenny Yeh space trip --------------- Jenny Yeh
17&18 school's out -----------
Elmo's song -------- Miki Yamada
I remember a beat ------- Serena Dong
the lost boy ----------------- Audrey Liu
memories ------------- Linda Sun
page girl of my memories ---- Clifford Gan farewell to childhood ---------------- Linda Sun
Forgotten ------------------ Annie Tan
stacks of sheets -------- Yunru Phua
of your 19 aowntastemedicine ------------------ --------
Yunru Phua Megan Tsou
vines, full of thorns --- Annie Tan memories, i remember -- Anderson Ou
Keep an eye on him By Miki Yamada
Bounce and pounce, up and down, It followed him, all around. It had little legs, or perhaps arms that supported It.
He didn’t notice that he was being watched. he thought It was only a bug. Hop, plop, It fell in his cup to watch him more closely but still he did not notice its existence, even when he was done with his drink. It had been assigned a duty, to stick onto him so It threw itself up into the air and rested on his head. The days that went by were pretty good. It formed a nest amongst his hair. One day though, he scratched his head, which was a little bit itchy and found a round blob. He lifted It to his eyes. and It awakened from Its nap, and blinked innocently at him. Paralyzed with horror, he fainted onto the ground and was sent to the hospital. His parents came. His father, angry, said, “I told you to keep your eye on him!” The mother responded, “But I did!” 1
Free By Kepin Du
What is freedom? Freedom is taking off the seatbelt when the crazy rollercoaster ride comes to an end. What is freedom? Freedom is the loud, echoing bell that rings at 3:25 and signals the end of school. What is freedom? Freedom is the smooth, sweet, creamy ice-cream that touches the tongue in the burning summer. What is freedom? Freedom is typing out ideas that have been swimming around for days, months. I am free.
By Linda Sun
An ancient window, By Susan Liu a curtain half drawn. Stone cornice, “Free yourself from her, stone sill, and let go of her tight ropes.” framing the weathered wood “Can’t. I can’t cut loose.” of the mahogany shutters, somber and unyielding. Behind, all is hidden. None may know its secrets— the intrigues of a great house, insidious and sinister, darkness from the other side of law— all hidden behind two shutters, By Sherri Lin solemn, weathered, and stately, Every time I look back in life, hiding from the blinding glare I wish I could go back in time. of daylight. If I could make another choice, I would have done things differently. I would have picked up your last call that put an end to us in the fall. I would have studied harder By Susan Liu for a better grade and a brighter future. I would have stopped your friends I threw my memories away from calling you insane. when you threw me away. I would have encouraged myself to give you all the help you needed. Yes, I would have done things differently, but I’m not sure if I would still be me.
Tick-Tock By Yunru Phua
Tick—tock—tick and tock— Time ticks by, echoes from the past resonate as time ticks by, haunting me in the deep of the night. Tick—tick—tick—tock— An inch into the future is another step away. I still hear our conversations, still wish for midnight calls. Tick—tick—tick—tick— Afraid to forget, and the desire to find the feeling back. But tick—tick goes the time, trickling away and dying out. 2
I Remember a Beat By Serena Dong
Sound flows into my ears and my eardrums hum. For the first time in a long time it lightens my world.
I dance to it, shake my entire body to it, to the rhythm, to the beat, it changes my life completely.
I remember the fields of grain, a golden sea swaying gently in the wind, lulling me to sleep.
I remember when it started at three, remote in my hand, my mouth moving, I wanted to let the world hear my voice and let the world know my love.
By Linda Sun
I remember Fatherâ€™s hands, rough and callused, firmly steering the plow, guiding the oxen. I remember Motherâ€™s feet, small yet resilient, inching along the earthen road, carrying the weight of the family. I remember a sky filled with airplanes, stark against the blue sky, zooming down, sending everything up in puffs of smoke. I remember the difficult roads, strewn with bodies, charred, pitted, and broken, stench and smoke invading my nostrils. I remember a secret basement, damp, dark, and constricting our breaths tense and shallow. I remember a long tunnel, tall, narrow, and craggy with a shaft of light at the end.
It is music. It is how I will always remember and love you.
My Memories By Clifford Gan
I remember that time that time of the year when… Wait… When did it happen? I have forgotten. How could I forget? The girl her silky long hair blown by the wind her beautiful smile After that? I have forgotten.
Did I walk up to her? Did I talk to her? I have forgotten. Wait, why was she smiling? Or was she… I have forgotten. Who was she? What was she doing there? That girl in the wind her smooth long hair I thought that I would never forget her. But I have forgotten…. A girl walks in. She says, “Hey, wake up! I came to see you. You may have forgotten me, but I will never forget you. Never…” She starts crying. This girl of my memory, her beautiful long hair shiny and smooth. I have no regre... *Beeeeeeep…………*
Childhood By Linda Sun
My grandmother hanging laundry on a bamboo pole Me looking up at her It was sunny. My great-grandmother sorting vegetables by the door Our flat wasn’t well lit even though it was noon And it was hot And the cicadas were chirping. My grandfather listening to the stock analysis his dinner going cold on his lap. For the first six years of my life, he was there every single day. He never sat at the table with us. I finally told him, in my eighth year, that he might as well adopt the stock as his granddaughter, for all the interest he showed towards me. My mother staying up late, studying for another test. The weak light from the bathroom shining down on the bed, An ever present, comforting presence enveloping me bearing me into the land of dreams. The gentle lull of a sleepy childhood These sights which were once so much a part of my life all faded and yellow worn away by the rough grindstone that is time. Only now, looking back, do I see that I was truly happy then.
“Orange Cat” By Kevin Yu
HY ‘The Ducks” By Albert Xu
“Track” By Krissie Tan
“Blossom” By Krissie Tan
“Floral” By Krissie Tan
By Sharon Yu
Dust flying, bricks crashing, we’re falling into the core of the Earth. Roads cracking, buildings clashing, we’re falling into the end of our youth. Floods rising, volcanoes erupting, we’re falling into the cusp of the future. Sirens ringing, children crying, we’re falling into the nonexistent exit; we’re falling into the end of humanity.
WhoSpain Lived in By Atsushi Yamada
Once there was a woman who lived in Spain, and all her food was grain. She ate and ate until she was in painwent to call the doctor Mrs. Brain. They chittered and chattered while it rained. The droplets bittered and battered at the window’s frame. Suddenly, click clack BOOM the woman spat out henbane. And that was the end of the woman who lived in Spain.
Life of a Shoe By Miki Yamada
Goodness, there he goes again, stuffing his foot in me. The smell— oh has he ever, ever, thought of washing those dirty feet of his, to keep them from suffocating me? I started out as beautiful white cloth Converses. When he bought me— it was a chilly Autumn day— the first thing he did, me protecting his feet, was jump into muddy puddles
that were formed by the rain. The thick mud flowed into me, penetrating my skin.
He walks forever And, quite often, people recognize my beauty and, jealous of it, step right on me. The record was broken the other day when a total of fifty three people on the subway stepped on me. I used to be such a handsome shoe, making lady shoes faint the minute they saw me.
Now, I do not have the face to meet those pretty shoes and ask for their names. I hear rumors lately that he’s going to get a pair of new shoes. It is time for me to be free and watch some other shoe being tortured.
Song By Miki Yamada
The buzzing bees take over the sidewalk flowers on a foggy summer day. Hardly anyone can see more than five steps ahead. The air is humid due to impending rain. Even so, the street is full of people on this Sunday afternoon. The little boy skips down the street, jumping over muddy puddles and humming “Elmo’s Song,” the only tune that he remembers. He walks on with his torn shirt flapping. His hair is a mess; his arms and legs are full of scars from the rose bushes that he has walked through over the past year. Nobody notices his existence. He has not eaten for the past few days. His skinny body drifts from side to side as he walks down the row of stores. Only a year before his eyes were full of color, as if a fire burned in them. Now, the fire has long extinguished, and the only thing that remains is Elmo’s song playing over and over again in his head. As he moves on, little children with elegant shoes look at his toes squirming out of the tips of his shoes. They ask, “Why doesn’t he have proper shoes?” Parents always look away and say, “That’s just the way it is, my dear.” He, too, had a family and a lovely house. He lived at the center of his parents’ attention. At times, though, he was scolded. When he was, he watched Sesame Street. It was his way of forgetting the bad things that happened in his life. He watched it so often that he memorized “Elmo’s Song.” He trots on and sees a woman standing across the street. She is twice his height, and her long brown hair rests upon her right shoulder. She’s waving at me, the boy thinks. She looks familiar to him, and he knows why. A word slips out of his mouth, a word he has not said for a whole year. “Mom?” He hesitates before running towards the woman. “Mom! Mom!” He cries out with the last bit of his voice as the wind blows against him. The traffic lights turn red. Beeeeep! “Watch it, kid!” He turns around and sees a truck coming toward him. He looks at the truck blankly. “Not yet!” he cries. He doesn’t want to die just yet. Just one more look at his mother would satisfy him. He turns his head to his mother’s direction. But she’s not there. He feels himself falling back – flying, really – onto the hard ground. Voices surround him, and it starts to rain. As he lies on the ground, he hears “Elmo’s Song” playing louder and louder in his head. He closes his eyes.
Remember ? By Megan Tsou
Do you remember? The day we first met, the snow swirling in the air, like little dancing fairies. Do you remember? The day we were together, the sun shined brightly, like a naive baby. Do you remember? The day we watched Titanic together, the rain drizzling in the air, even God was touched by our encounter. Do you remember? The day we argued, the rain poured heavily, like your silence that flooded me. Do you remember, all of these memories? I am waiting for you, unwilling to let go of you.
Morning By Sharon Yu
The moment he walked into the room, she was mesmerized. After that day she dreamt about the things they might have in common, she thought about what she would wear when she was to see him again, in the morning. The moment she walked in to the room, he pretended not to notice the girl that would make things harder for him, for this job—for his life, so he prayed that he would not see her again, the woman that was his boss, in the morning.
I at open the close By Serena Dong
My eyes are open. I use all of my energy to smile; I feel teardrops land on my arm; I feel the wet hospital bed sheets and a kiss on my cheek. I take one last look at my mother, my father, and my brother. I feel like I am betraying them, but I know it is time. I attempt to mouth a farewell, but they donâ€™t understand. I close my eyes, with the last memories of our trip to Disneyland in my head, and then Black. I open my eyes. I find myself facing a bright light.
Sunglasses By Susan Liu
A round frame with soft angles; a shiny surface with shaded lenses. You shield me from the world, protect me from judgment. Or are you merely the excuse I use to hide from reality?
s ’ r e m m A Su eze Bre
ut nuck o ur lawn, s e ’v e t ew oo Becaus back doors t neath our fee e e b , from th crispy grass e park at task— h t o t e n h r gre onto t ss the yard i anothe the wicked t o e r y c a d and lishe h of ccomp om the wrat a e ’v e w fr scaped we’ve e the house, rd, f witch o m the “m” wo s of society el ro away f m the tramm r youth. s, o ou r guide u liss of away f b s t e r l a p e sim ur h to the ’ll let o . e w , e t, m This ti may go our only limi y e h t er e, wherev clouds abov e h With t y. l fl l we wi ill gape breeze w s t n e r r’s Our pa l the summe ee as we f our feet. h beneat
Sweet, Icy Feel By
Susan Liu I open th e refriger ato and take out the tu r door, b of ice c The ice o ream. n the sur face melt as the he s, at drains from my hands. I grab a s poon and peel the The cream lid back. y I slide my texture revealed, spoon in. I lift the s po and feel ic on to my lips, y coldnes s. Finally I taste the sweetnes like a sug s, ary taste of heaven .
Forgotten By Annie Tan
I remember the joy when I first stretched my small and wrinkled body, barely breathing, desperately needing a loving parent. I remember finally having a place to call home, feeling the warmth of another, being able to see and move. I remember playing with him, a young boy in my family, making him stronger, faster, and better. I remember winning our first game, feeling triumphant and proud of the young boy. I remember being made to feel important, loved, and embraced by him separate, being his best friend, always by his side. I remember everything, but then my boy became a man, got a good job, married a pretty girl, and left me in the corner, forgotten. I became nothing more than a childhood memory, no longer the best buddy I used to be, but I had known all along that our relationship wouldn’t last. I knew that I would remain forever only his basketball.
Back By Sherri Lin
As a kid, I remember staring up at the taller students at school, wondering, hoping, dreaming of the day when I, too, would finally grow up. As a high school freshman, I remember admiring the seniors on the basketball team, looking forward to the day when I, too, would be captain, leading the team in a winning streak. As a sophomore, I remember wondering what my senior prom would be like. Looking at the pictures of the upperclassmen, I wondered which amazing dress would fit me best. As a junior, I remember feeling jealous of those who received extraordinary SAT scores and college acceptances. I looked forward to the day when colleges would take me. Now that I’m a senior, I no longer look forward. I’m the oldest in the school, I’m the team captain. Prom is approaching, colleges have accepted me. So no, I no longer look forward, but backwards at all the memories and people I will miss dearly.
Freedom By Anderson Ou
Trapped and accompanied by despair and loneliness, the man sat on the cold prison floor. He had nothing, no hope, no love, no life. He made friends with the rats in the corner and the cockroaches that crawled all over.
One day, his life changed. His long beard was shaved. His sharp fingernails trimmed. His hair cut. He was a whole new man. He said farewell to the cell, to the rats in the corner, and the cockroaches that crawled all over. He gained freedom.
That Song By Megan Tsou
Closed my eyes, yesterday, as I heard you singing this song. We both cannot believe, today, we already have to say goodbye. I wish, tomorrow, on a separate road, we will find our own colorful flower. Farewell. As the song continues, we’ll continue our steps, ‘till the day we meet again. 13
By Serena Dong
I close my eyes an image appears: Clouds in the sky, the shape of fresh scones, the texture of cotton candy, the color of rich vanilla. On the forest bed, majestic trees dance in the wind. Light wind lifts my hair up and sings Claire de Lune in my ear. dark red roses exhale sweet aroma. I open my eyes and see reality in front of me. Clouds in the sky, the shape of a bitten, rotten apple, the texture of jackfruits, the color of overcooked hamburger meat. On the cracked concrete ground, lonely bicycles abandoned by their owners. Dust balls gather and soar in the air. The wind screeches harshly in my ears. I let out a deep sigh. This is reality. I can only imagine what it’s like to live in the image that lies behind the lids of my eyes.
The Lost Boy
By Audrey Liu
prison camp gave its last gasp and collapsed into a pile of wires, bars, and rotting rations. The aroused dust diffused through tainted air until the last traces of the sediments blended into the same grayness of the sky. And then all was quiet. I lay in the debris, sprawled over the hard soil and bathed in the silence. My head was groggy and light from blood loss. I couldn’t think, but I knew that this must be how a war ends. A few scattered flies buzzed around the dried blood caked over my left eye. I had survived the war.
fields back on the battle field back on the ha ha…...” Its voice trailed off as it turned around and fixed its eyes upon me. The left eye was hidden behind blood, but the right eye bore into me. The stare was vacant. “Co-omrade…” The mouth opened and closed and choked on blood. It limped towards me, desperate to move closer, but couldn’t seem to stop itself from falling apart with each step. One of its knees buckled, the other one bent backwards, its neck hung limp, and finally, the whole body crumpled a few feet away from my body, into a heap of reeking meat with one limb reaching out for me.
Pathetic, soulless, and lifeless—it was a creature of war.
I let that thought hang in the air for a few minutes. Something told me that it should be important, but I couldn’t see why. Lying here, at the end of the world, I was curiously without pain. The constant sores and hunger of my body, never truly absent since the day I fought my first battle, had disappeared, all at once. Therefore, the emptiness. As if I were the only thing alive. High-pitched laughter erupted in the air and shattered the silence. I quickly covered my mouth before I realized that it had not come from me. I widened my eyes. A ghoulish figure rose from a pile of rubble on my left. It tottered on its feet, slowly straightening until it stood, laughing without ceasing. Its head came into my view, and I saw that its face was a tapestry of wounds, and blood and meat, a gaping hole that was the mouth being the most prominent feature. It shrieked and laughed and cried: “The war cannot be over! Out of this prison camp we go! Take up your guns, my comrades! We shall fight on! Back on the battle
I winced at the creature with horror. It was a monster that craved bloodshed and did not understand peace. Pathetic, soulless, and lifeless—it was a creature of war.
had transformed to the face of a boy. A boy with soft, full cheeks, and small stubs of a premature mustache on his chin, slept with a tranquil expression as if he dreamed of sunshine, horsebackriding, good food, and waiting parents. Yes, this was what he was supposed to be. And yes, this was what he no longer was. Memories overflowed from inside. Memories I had replayed time and time again in my head as I despaired, but had never truly relived until now. I stroked his hair as the scenes of my childhood sung to my senses. I realized that I was insane, but I did not care. He was I, and I was he again. That was the only thing that made the world right. I smiled and bent down to kiss the boy’s forehead.
A black noisy mass of flies swallowed his broken limbs, gaping mouth, blood caked left eye…… Hit by a sudden surge of familiarity, I stroked my own left eye and crawled towards the creature, planting one shaking limb in front of another. I knelt before it and gradually turned it over to face me. There it was, under a horde of flies, my own blood stained face.
My lips touched hard, cracked soil.
My breathing spiked, but I could not avert my eyes.
I stayed like this and soon, a newly found resolve filled the emptiness left by the end of the war.
He was merely
The boy disappeared, and I was by myself again. He was merely a delusion.
I brushed away the flies with a hesitant hand, tracing the broken nose, the gaping mouth, and the sunken eye sockets. Fear turned into pity, and I gazed, mesmerized, at its gruesome features. Then, the nose was no longer broken, the mouth was no longer gaping and the eyes were no longer sunken. Under my spellbound eyes, the bloody smear
I curled up with my forehead against the ground and stayed there for a time. Tears that dripped from my cheeks moistened a small patch of dry soil.
I rolled over and faced the gray sky. I searched the ground next to me with my hand, groping a jagged stone from the soil. I raised my arms, lifted the stone high against the thick clouds and, exhaling with a sigh of contentment, plunged it straight into my neck.
ART “Black Flower” by Kimberly Tan
“Hands all over” by Jenny Yeh
“Frog” by Peggy Chang
“Summer Flower” by Kimberly Tan
“Space Trip” by Jenny Yeh
School’s Out ! by Annie Tan
over at last! I’m going to the states tomorrow!”
“Awesome! Where ya going? I’m going to Cali.” “New Jersey. Can’t wait! How ‘bout you, Jacob?” Jacob looked down, and mumbled, “Summer school…” His friends didn’t notice though. They were too excited about summer. Jacob sighed. Summer was supposed to be a time of fun, a time to relax, a time for partying, but that wasn’t what his summer was going to be. He had to stay and take summer school, because he hadn’t done well in school. A week ago, his English teacher had come up to him and said, “Jacob, you haven’t been doing well in my class. School’s almost over, and I’m afraid you’re not going to be able to pass. You’re going to have to go to summer school.” His Math teacher had said the same, and his report card certainly earned him a beating from his parents.
and wearing a pair of mismatched socks. But he didn’t notice. After a quick bowl of cereal, he grabbed his backpack, a few spare coins from the kitchen counter, and dragged himself to summer school. He slumped into his desk after entering the classroom and glanced around, noticing that he was the only loner. It was to be expected. Everyone else had friends with them, everyone but him. All his friends were gone. And they didn’t even sympathize with him. Forget sympathize; they probably didn’t even know he was stuck in summer school! Jacob scowled, bitter disappointment and anger seeping through him. First period was English. The teacher rambled on about participles and predicates for 40 minutes. During the ten minutes in between classes, he had nothing to do, so he pulled out his notebook and started doodling in it. He heard someone next to him laugh, but he didn’t bother looking up. It’s not like it would have anything to do with me. No one here even knows me. “Ha! That’s a really cute drawing. What an adorable alien!” Jacob looked up, realizing that someone was talking to him.
“Nah. I’m fine being alone.”
Jacob walked away, and none of his friends even noticed. He trudged home, occasionally looking back, thinking, hoping, wishing that his friends would notice he had slipped away and call. But they didn’t. The day dragged by slowly, and he didn’t receive a single text message or phone call. Normally, his friends would talk to him nonstop. It was 10 pm already. They’re all packing their bags, I bet. He felt lonely and abandoned and went to sleep, restless. The next morning, Jacob’s alarm sounded at 7 am. He groaned, turned off the alarm, and reached for the nearest clothes. Moments later, he was sitting at the kitchen table, half awake. He was a mess; his shirt unbuttoned, his belt not tightened, his hair sticking out in all directions,
He looked up into the face of a cute, beautiful, young girl. She smiled tentatively, and said, “Hi. I’m Eileen. That drawing is really cute.”
Jacob blushed and stuttered, “Th-thanks. I’m J-jacob.” “You seem to be lonely. Why not talk with some people? ” “Nah. I’m fine being alone.” “Hmm… okay then. Well, you can always come find me if you need someone to talk to or hang out with. I’ll see you around then.” She turned around and walked to her seat, which was right behind his. Within moments, she was surrounded by friends. She’s obviously someone popular. Look at how everyone surrounds her like that. It’s no surprise though. She’s beautiful, nice, and friendly. Who wouldn’t like her? Jacob slumped back down into his seat and ripped out the alien drawing, crumpled it up, and threw it onto the floor. Where are my friends when I need them?! He flipped to a blank page and began to doodle again, this time drawing his friends and making them look like devils.
Lunch finally came. Jacob was surprised he actually survived that long. He walked over to the lunch line and stood at the end. He noticed someone waving at him. It was Eileen. She smiled and called him over. He glanced around nervously, before walking to her. “Hey! You shouldn’t wait in line when you have a friend up here,” Eileen teased. “It’s okay... I’m not in a hurry to eat or anything.” “Well, do you want me to show you around? We can eat lunch together,” Eileen smiled sweetly. “Sure, I guess, if you have the time. What will you tell your friends?” “It’s alright. They won’t mind.”
Eileen fell on grass laughing at his goofy look. She grabbed a napkin from her tray and said, “Don’t move.” As her hand closed in on his face, he felt his face turn red. The laughter stopped, and it was completely silent. Only the distant sounds of laughter could be heard. She wiped off the sauce quickly, scooted to the side, and both of them looked away, embarrassed. The rest of the day went by rather quickly. Jacob had two classes with Eileen, and they spent both classes passing notes and laughing about random stuff. He loved her sense of humor and her handwriting; every time she passed him a note, he would stare at her writing as if it alone told him everything. The last bell rang, and Jacob was about to go home. He was just past the school gate when he heard someone call his name. He turned back and saw Eileen running toward him, waving a folded piece of paper. “Here’s my number. Call me, maybe? See you tomorrow!” Then she scurried back to her friends.
He loved her sense of humor and her handwriting; every time she passed him a note, he would stare at her writing as if it alone told him everything.
“Thanks then...” Jacob smiled bashfully, feeling his cheeks heat up.
Lunch was two slices of pizza, a carton of chocolate milk, and an orange. After they got their trays, Eileen brought him outdoors. She stopped at a big willow tree by the soccer field and motioned for him to sit. “So how was your first day of summer school?” she asked.
He looked down at the paper. There was her cell phone number in that beautiful, perfect, typewriter-like handwriting of hers. Then he noticed that taped in the corner was his crumpled up alien drawing and a note saying: you left this behind. I like it. Don’t throw it away. He grinned. This summer isn’t going to be that bad.
“It wasn’t bad. Boring, but not bad. What about you?” He asked, looking at his pizza. He wasn’t used to eating with a girl, especially a rather cute one. “It was alright. Math was easy, but English, not so much,” she responded. She asked him why he was in summer school, and before long, they were chatting and laughing like old friends. “Hey, you got tomato sauce on your face,” Eileen said. “Really? Where?” He asked, trying to see it and ending up cross-eyed. “On your left cheek,” Eileen laughed. He stuck out his tongue and tried to lick the sauce off, but he couldn’t reach it. He was really quite a sight;
Stacks of Sheets By Yunru Phua
Stacks of sheets, piles of paper— Every night till the morning light, a constant battle raging— Fighting through the battlefields of D-Day, diving deep into diction, density and decomposition reactions. Finally clawing our way out of the vines of assignments and due dates— The sun is rising, eyes heavy and lacking sleep. But dragging— Dragging our feet to school— when, when, when, When When will we BE FREE?
AYour taste of Own Medicine
By Yunru Phua
Reeking of bleach, overly hygienic. The woman in white uniform went up to the white bed. Shook the sleeping boy, helped him up. Took out the syringe, watched his eyes widen in horror— He screamed, woke the whole building. Refused to be treated, slapped the woman’s hand away— He snatched the syringe, the needle, and, in the fit of the moment, stabbed the woman with it—
So much for injecting her patient.
Machine By Megan Tsou
The washing machine wore a faded plastic acrylic and stood forlorn on the empty balcony. Its voice was loud and never idyllic, yet it never complained. While others lived cozily under the roof, The washing machine stood alone guarding the balcony. For how many years it had spun, no one knew. Time passed within a blink of an eye and it reached its demise. I had a sudden urge to help the washing machine, only to find it already impaired. Today I questioned why my clothes are so clean, only to find a woman squatting on the empty balcony. My mother is the washing machine. Her fatigue and grief I have not perceived.
I remember Memories,
By Anderson Ou
I remember when we were still young, running on grass fields, catching dandelions, sleeping under shady trees. I remember , the first day of school, we were six, laughing innocently.
Full of Thorns By Annie Tan
For most of the year Iâ€™m surrounded by homework and projects, quizzes and tests, stress and pressure, arguments and teachers.
Persistently, I fight those vines that are full of thorns, one after another, desperately trying to break free. I try so hard, finally reach an opening, see a ray of light. Iâ€™m free to see the sun shine brightly on my face; free to stay up late at night and sleep until the afternoon; free to relax and enjoy life; free to play and, for once, free not to worry about homework.
I remember when we graduated, received certificates, wiped tears of joy from our cheeks. I remember when it was the first day of work, we were colleagues in the same department. I remember when we fell in love, our first date, holding your hand. I remember when you went into labor. We became a family, looking at our first newborn. I remember when, at home for the night, we watched our son go out on his first date. Do you remember ours? I remember when at the hospital again, we lay together on separate beds, recalling all those happy memories.
But my freedom doesnâ€™t last, for time passes by. A month or two is gone and before I really get to have my fun, I get dragged back, once again, surrounded by vines full of thorns, only to fight my way out again. 20
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