Page 1

Inkwell literary magazine spring and summer 2018

southern regional technical college


Masthead Editors Kim Fromkin Laura Weeks Richard B. Atkinson Daniel Thrash Titus L. Butler Rhetta Weeks

2


chasm of calligraphy note from the editor

3


The Tower of Babble  Kim Fromkin

9

Carmen Rodriguez

The Scroll of Towers  Kim Fromkin

11

Ballad of the Journey Kaleb Sweet

Timeless   12 Toyrianna Bennett Running Red  Holland Lee

14

Figure Revealing   15 Carmen Rodriguez The Older Sibling  16 Tiffany Watson Fight Onwards  Kaleb Sweet Hell Road  Laura Weeks

18

24

The Tower of Knowledge  25 Kim Fromkin 28

62

Bad Day at the Beach   63 Richard B. Atkinson

Old Road   38 Alexia Feely The Two Strong Sides   Marlise Cason

41

What is it to Be American   64 Daniel Thrash The Observation Tower  65 Kim Fromkin Losing My Religion   Kim Fromkin

Metaphors of Love   Anna Moore 48

The Gospel Tower  49 Kim Fromkin

Supermarket Hassles 51 The Course of Memory   29 Richard B. Atkinson Georgia McCoy Red Figure   52 Kaitlynn Tonkin The Frame  30

4

Dated   Taylor Smith

Immortal Protector   36 Dawn Nahlen

Magic Words  Kaleb Sweet

56

I am a Myth   61 Brooke Beasley

Dragonfly  34 Laney Pollock

Victorious   44 Georgia McCoy

The roads   22 Alexia Feely

The Bay Shines  Laura Weeks

Inside my Mind   Wyatt Visnon

Centaur  32 Heather Allen

Fall Apart  42 Chastity Toliver

20

Broekn Pieces   Taylor Smith

31

Blowing A Bubble  54 Reading A Book  54 Richard B. Atkinson

46

Ambition   70 Titus L. Butler II Pig Sauls Road  Benjamin Gardner

71

66


5


defininity A text has definition.

A human has infinition.

The language is definite. We humans are infinite. The text is a definite infinition because the language was created from the infinite human. When the human expresses its infinite self through words the defininity of language is cultivated. However the language is allowed to transform and take on different meanings through the human’s observational experience in that moment. Because the human is perpetually evolving, the definition of words evolve as well.

6


7


fluidrus

8


The Tower of Babble Kim Fromkin

The Tower of Babble is a stumbling block in our passageway back to our preposition. Words formed the light. Words formed the earth. Words formed the day. Words formed the night. Words formed the heavens. Words formed the sky. Words formed the lights in the sky (the sun, stars, moon, planets, celestial orbs) Words formed the dry land. Words formed the seas. Words formed the grass, the trees, plants, herbs, and fruits. Words formed signs, seasons, days, years, and time. Words formed living creatures. Words formed breath. Words formed man and woman. Words formed blessings. Words formed the seeds that dwell within all living things in order to continue to reproduce its own kind. Words formed the garden. Words formed the tree of life and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Words formed life. Words formed good and evil. Words formed the snake living in the garden within the two trees. Words formed commands, rules, laws, and limitations. Words formed names. Words formed questioning. Words formed words. Words formed curses. Words formed death. Words formed the destruction of man; the flood. Words formed the earth to self destruct. Words formed the Ark to save the lives of Noah, his family and living creatures. Words formed the covenant (pledge, union between God and man). Words formed wind. Words formed divisions and separations. Words formed the different languages. Words formed the diversities of creation itself. Words formed borders to separate lands, nations, and people. Words formed kings, judges, rulers, powers, and principalities. Words formed unity. Words formed rebellion. Words formed the first tower; Tower of Babel. Words formed confusion. Words formed writings, books, and doctrines.

9


10


The Scroll of Towers Kim Fromkin “And to the angel of the church of Pergamos write, These things says He who has the sharp two-edged sword:” Revelation 2:12 NKJ The word Pergamos comes from a Greek root word pyrgos. It means “tower, a fortified structure rising to a considerable height. The sharp two-edged sword here is a supernatural representation of God. Some translations call this “sword of my mouth”. God himself speaks this truth. We must come to the place where we can identify the voice of God; to know what is true and what is not, because not everything we believe to be is true. What we believe to be true is what will become our reality. Our reality then disregards everything that goes beyond our belief. Step by step, layer upon layer, our mind builds a tower based off of what we have accepted as truth. Those towers are our real world. It is precious and held dear to the individual who erected it, so much that one will fortify its structure and defend its walls. Anything that comes against what we believe is considered an enemy. It does not matter if it is good or if it is bad; or true or false. If that is what we see as real, if that is what we believe to be truth we will defend it. We surround ourselves with others who believe the same or close to it, proclaiming what we believe publicly so as to convince another that our belief is “THE” truth. We seek confirmation through facts and ideas to strengthen our “truth” walls causing us to become firmer in our real world, our real city, harboring our beliefs. Great contributors and donors to these ideas come from someone else’s teachings, someone else’s opinions, sermons, books, laws and rules, beliefs, etc. When something or someone disagrees or questions what we believe, we receive it as a threat, an assault of injury to the towers which we have built. This creates a blockade surrounding our hearts and minds so that nothing else is allowed in or out. Our truth becomes shut in and we become stiff-necked. We then set up feelers (based out of emotion) that guard us. Any thought that tries to enter this fortified structure is denied access. Therefore, we remain trapped in our own self erected world of what we believe as real and true, even if it is a lie.

11


Timeless

Toyrianna Bennett Taking my head yet not my soul and body Expressing the moment in time from the pose you see You took my head but not my identity Fighting until the death and last breath of me Leaving a trace of timeless beauty and a breathtaking view Beautiful covers carved with such details behind me Serving no purpose there but in front maybe Being carved by many sculptors you get the idea Using my horse as a serving purpose of strength Leaving my mark as one of the most ancient sculptors

 

12


13


Running Red Holland Lee

The red distance listening. Rushed. Girl distance. Running distance. A listening girl. Listening, running. Rushed, running a the girl. Rushed girl. The running. Running. A running rushed girl listening. Distance love rushed. A, a the red listening girl. Red girl listening, running, listening. Listening, running girl distance. Red love. Distance a rushed love. Listening girl. The listening. The, the distance listening. Rushed running love. Girl. A red girl. The love girl rushed. A girl rushed love. A listening, listening. A girl rushed a love. Running the a rushed distance. Running the rushed red, red girl. Love girl, girl listening.

14


Figure Revealing Carmen Rodriguez What is it not to walk and still stand tall. Not knowing how to grab what is in reach but hold on tight with such grasp, One may lose their head and know how to hold it high, With a body built of stone, yet feeling all alone. As smooth as the waters out at sea, to end up like the rough sands on the beach. Yet there are no eyes but with miracles we shall see With this body my shoulders hold up my strength. You would figure we found defeat, but even in the darkness some can see. There is no place where this body has not gone, A change in life does not keep me from knowing how to move on.

15


The Older Sibling Tiffany Watson Being the older sibling has it’s here and there’s. When you’re the older child and you have a younger sibling that looks up to you for everything. You begin to question everything you do from there on out. Especially when they want to hang out with you and your friends. Even when my brother’s friends are mine to. So we things work out. But something that day made everything change before we even knew it. It was August 10, 2013 and it was the summer time so I and my brother were hanging out with his friend colt like we always did at his house. It was a hot muggy summer day for us three on the dirt road we all grew up on. We were either riding our camouflage four-wheelers, swimming in the pool at my house, or playing in the red Georgia clay mud like regular kids do. But today we decide we were going to shoot guns. Of course Colt and I were older than Bobby (my brother) that was only six years old so we would hold the guns not him. Colt began shooting the gun. It was an air soft pistol with orange plastic bullets. Just like he always does he shots a couple of can multiple of times just for the fun of it. After he gets done with the cans he goes for the old bird house his dad built and before he knew it Bobby was in front of the bird house. Colt had already shot without knowing he was standing there. Before Colt knew, it bobby begin crying because he had been shot behind his right ear. His cries are something I couldn’t forget they were the long screaking cries. Hearing his cries then hearing Colt yell my name I knew something was wrong. “Come here, Come here Tiffany, Hurry!” Colt said

“Bubba Let me see, Come on let me see where it hit you,” I replied. Being the older sibling all I could think what am I supposed to do. I’m the one is charge with my mom being at work and us being out of school for the summer so. I didn’t know what to say or do. What did I do wrong ? What could I have done to not let this happen? Saying to myself. We ran home to clean up the blood from behind his ear. Blood was everywhere, but we could still see the bullet lodge behind my brother’s ear. He was still in

16

tears and I didn’t know how to calm him down. So I was there like a big sister should be I heled him, took care of him, and did everything I could possibly think of doing until my mom got home. It came time for our mom to come home. We heard her doors shut in her car. I began to feel scared and nervous. She came inside and we acted as normal as we could. But we didn’t tell her what happen. We were both still in shock for the incident that happened that day. We could tell she knew something was up, because of the way were acting. We were never that nice to each other after spending the whole day together. The night went on. Bobby pain kept getting worse. “Tiffany, we have to tell mom I’m scared!” Bobby said. “Bubba we can’t tell her we will both


be in trouble and won’t be able to hang out with colt anymore,” I replied. “I’m in pain it hurts so bad I can hardly keep my eyes open,” Bobby said. But all I could think is that I’m the older sister. I am supposed to watch over my brother and take care of him. So I did like the older sister I am and told my mom the truth. “Mama, Bubba got shot behind the ear today at Colt’s house today,” I said. “You waited until now to tell me almost four or five hours later Tiffany,” Mom said. We got in the car and went straight to the emergency room. When we arrived there my mother called my dad to tell him what was going on and he wasn’t happy. I remember what my mother said to my father that day on the phone. “Dewayne, Bubba has been shot behind the ear at Colt’s house. We are at the hospital right now getting it looked at,” My mother said. All I was thinking what my father was saying on the other line or how he could be feeling about what he just heard. He probably never thought he would receive a call like that about either of his kids but today he did. We were all so thankful where he got shot at didn’t kill my brother. We waited for the doctor to call my brother’s name so we could go back there to see what was going to happen. Before we got called back a nurse came back and said that the doctor ordered x-rays to see if the bullet hit anything that can cause any damaged when it gets removed. We sat in the room waiting for the doctor to come tell us the news. While we waited of course me and brother were getting in trouble for not calling when the incident happened. And we apologized over and over but it was never good enough.

The doctor finally came in to tell us the news what he found on the scans. Saying that my brother is very lucky, because it was a couple of inches away from hitting a temple behind his ear. But they could remove the bullet right then and wrap up the area. So we had to leave the room so they could put my brother under to remove the bullet without him feeling any pain. After thirty minutes of waiting on the doctor nurse to come in. The nurse finally came in and told us everything went as planned. After my brother woke up that we could go see him and see if he was able to go home after they checked him out. My parents looked at me and said Tiffany, you and your brother are both lucky it didn’t cause damage any damage that couldn’t been fixed or even worse your brother not be with us anymore. But we were all very happy that everything was going to be okay. Knowing that day I could have lost my brother, because of me or my friend not paying attention to where my brother was standing before he shoot the gun that day. To this day my brother still looks up to me and watches everything I do with him being seventeen years old. Being the older sister to him is the best thing I could be. The incident that happened that day brought us closer than we were before. It made me think of things differently and how something little can change your whole life in a matter of seconds.

17


Fight Onwards Kaleb Sweet

Imagine an enemy that takes your dreams and crushes them Leaving despair and broken people in it’s wake. Everyone believes that they are powerless to stop it The one exception is you. It’s taken from people you cherish, they are broken You must guide them with your light! You take the fight to the darkness Summoning all the courage and willpower you can muster. You venture close and you see, hear and feel The cries of those who’ve been deprived of their spirit. The darkness begins to enwreathe you in itself The silence is only broken by the cries of the lost. The darkness feels like a furious gale It tries to topple you, but your will is unfaltering. The cries only empower you to persevere They believe in you! Your invigorated spirit burns You shine with the utmost incandescence. The darkness begins to wane, it feels fear It fires arrows of anguish your way, quiver unending. Your light, a shield of purity parrying wicked blows without effort. You fight back with the strength of a thousand The darkness is in full retreat! The time has come to end it The light takes the form of a bow.

18


It hums with it’s brimming power You drawn an arrow and take aim. The arrow is poised to strike You loose the arrow and it flies straight and true As if it were an extension of you. The arrow hits it’s mark, piercing the darkness It erupts in a fantastic spectacle. You did it! You conquered that which others could not You guarded those who couldn’t themselves You restored their hopes again! However darkness lurks around every corner Are you brave enough to challenge it? Don’t let it plant the seeds of doubt within you You’ve always been able to! Remember that when you’re lost in the darkness You only need to look for the l light! It resides within yourself! Don’t run, stand and fight!

19


Hell Road Laura Weeks You don’t know

Precipice stalking,

They don’t know

Young girl, walking

Hell road

Beat up feet

Where gravel ends

With several mountains of steep

And the red clay of the devil begins

Packed up to sleep The secrets she keeps

Precipice, stalking Young girl, walking

Broader than shoulders

Beat up feet

And fiercer than a flail

With several mountains of steep

He comes knockin’

Packed up to sleep

O Holy Grail!

The secrets she keeps Hell road Love to laugh

Well hell if I know

Their cruel staff

Buried under red clay

They wave at

Yes Lord!

You Save us False messiahs who lie through their teeth

Keep us

Hell road leads them

As best as you know how

To bend their will

For the betterment of all of us I will

And kneel to say

stand still

“Look back and you’ll turn to dust!

Hell roads gonna stalk you

The clay will fill your lungs,

O Holy Grail!

The snakes will come out, The battle will already be won” Hallelujah! Yes Lord! Stop this right now Put a stop to this hoard

20

Yes Lord yes!


Scroll of Towers cont. from pg. 11

The parable of Pergamos is the illustration of God’s words through Jesus dethroning and tearing down the fabricated city of towers that we created. The fabric that created these towers consist of doctrinal fibers. His words are sharp and cutting, acidic. The Greek word for sharp is oxys. The prefix oxy is something pungent. Therefore, what is coming from His mouth stimulates and penetrates the target, the heart and mind. The words are sharp, they are bitter, yet highly flavored. When the message goes forth it is harsh, burning the rubbish, bleaching the stained, oxidizing impurities, and neutralizing the imbalanced. Yet, these words are so full of flavor and so rich that one can only take them in small doses. This is how the REAL TRUTH is given, in small doses. We are so full of deception, so sick from what we have believed to be true, that we can only handle the real truth a little bit at a time. We see this demonstrated in Revelation 10. The angel speaking to John has one foot on the land and one foot on the sea. This illustration is the true reality of the angel existing in two different realms, eternal and earthen, supernatural and natural, everlasting and temporal, real and artificial. He informs John that he is to eat the little scroll and that it will be sweet to his mouth but will become bitter when it hits his stomach. This

is another parable. The angel is feeding John revelation in the midst of two realms. These revelations of deep truth made his flesh sick, SEE sick! We do not realize just how sick our earth man is until we see the raw truth. ALL truth is completely open and exposed in the supernatural realm, nothing is hidden. However, in this realm it is concealed due to the wickedness that engulfs the natural. This is why the angel informs John that he was not to write what he was showing him. This was not something that could be publicized. F e w can receive t h e r e a l r a w truth.

21


The roads Alexia Feely

I used to revisit them in my mind. I used to sit up at night and pray that I would still remember the open fields which called for a perfect view of the captivating sunsets. I also prayed that I’d remember the smell of blue bonnets and the roads that would lead me to school and home. I faintly remember their voices and I’ve forgotten the warmth in their eyes, so I prayed that the roads, here, would lead me back. But now, memories which comforted and twisted my heart painfully so, are long lost and I’m not sure when I stopped remembering, but I remember when my tattered heart started mending with each new road that I became familiar with, with each voice that I had become accustomed to, and every soul that I had resonated with.

22


Scroll of Towers cont. from pg 21

Real truth cuts. Real truth divides. Real truth circumcises the heart and mind. Real truth strips away and destroys everything that has covered you, causing infections. Real truth hurts but it heals. Real truth cleanses. Real truth is bitter to the taste. Real truth does not agree with you. It opposes you! When you think you are ugly, the real truth reveals how beautiful you are. When you think you are right, the real truth puts your face in a mirror so you can see your wickedness and how wrong you are. Real truth does not need your compliance. It does not need your actions or words to understand you. You can run from the truth but you can never escape it. The real truth is sharp. Another meaning for the word sharp in Greek is a point; a present time point. The point is what pierces. The point is the present time revelation. In other words, a NOW word. It is the NOW revelation that pierces the natural with the supernatural from eternity into time at the NOW time to change ALL time. The two edges is symbolic of a double mouth, where two rivers meet. We have heard the expression “talking out of two sides of your mouth”. We have received this as always being something bad, as in a liar will talk out of two sides of their mouth. Yet, God himself speaks and flows from the two sides of His mouth of these two rivers. These two rivers represent good and evil but are both the real truth. The point or the mouth is what pierces and nourishes the natural. Out of your belly shall flow RIVERS (plural, more than one) of living water (John 7:38). Evil is just as much of living water as good is. This is a mystery. We see evil as death but God allows wickedness

to produce life. Religion is the Antichrist and therefore mocks God and mimics God. It is quite similar to the truth. It has a forked tongue and it too speaks out of two sides of its mouth. The difference is that it uses aspects of the truth to trap its prey but it hides its evil. God allows the truth of both sides, good and evil, to be revealed and exposed in order to release the one that has been trapped. The sharp two-edged sword of God’s mouth exposes good and it exposes evil. Our earthbound nature cannot understand nor comprehend the real truth. This is why our earth-man needs revelation. The revelatory river of truth is both good and evil, flowing within us to cut our dry land, our natural earth, and flood it with something far more superior. We embrace the revelation of good but we reject the revelation of what is evil within us. Yet the river of wickedness has just as much healing power as the river of good. It is not these rivers that heal you, rather it is the revelation of these mysterious waters. When you come to the place that you can see the evil in your life that is when you will come to the place of true healing. It cuts both ways. Our belief system has created a simulated city, one tower at a time. God is destroying these simulations simultaneously with His truth and building an underground city that cannot be destroyed: the inner city.

23


life.” I told her I’d never thought of it like that. We haven’t talked since then. I want to be a psychologist when I grow up, partly because I am a nosy person and I love listening to other people’s stories. Especially the sad ones. But it’s mainly because I want to help people. I want to be there for people the way I wish people were there for me. It makes sense in my head. I want to work with children but I am too vulgar to be a teacher. I would also like to be a writer but that won’t pay the bills. I’ll tuck that away and become a psychologist instead. I asked my sister to name one pro and one con about me. She said, “a pro is that you’re responsible, a con is that you are too responsible. Does that make sense?” I said, “No, but I’ll figure it out. She broke it down and said that it meant I was uptight sometimes. I also think she thinks I’m stupid sometimes. I knew what it meant. One of her biggest insults for is that I “don’t know how to have fun.” Sometimes I think this is true, but not in the way she thinks it’s true. I think sometimes I am far too sad to have fun. It’s really not that much fun waving fun when you don’t want to have fun. I hope this changes soon. One of my absolute worst characteristics is that I am empathetic. It has gotten to the point where I can sing myself into depression. That statement is not literal, but I hope you get what I mean. I wish that I wasn’t like this, but I also don’t know how to fix it. I often feel sad for people who don’t deserve my sadness.

Broekn Pieces

Taylor Smith

When I was young I fell out to the shower onto a glass mug. I shattered it. I do not remember much, but I recall my mother putting a green towel between my legs. I later found out that this saved my life. This is one of the ways I am indebted to her. I also remember the EMT standing over my bleeding body, I don’t know =what he said but I must have fainted because I can’t remember anything else. This is my first memory of pain.

24

That glass could have really messed me up. It’s scary that I could have died and not, ten years later, I hardly remember a thing. Life is funny like that. This story doesn’t serve a purpose. I just wanted to tell you. My birthday is December 28th, which is close to Christmas. The older I get the more I don’t mind. I was once talking to a friend about how life was and she said “bad day, not bad life.” I told her that for me, its bad days and a bad life. Then she asked me how my day was and I told her it was pretty good, so she said “Okay, good day, bad


The Tower of Knowledge Kim Fromkin

The Tower of knowledge is what we create from our lack of understanding. We praise, worship, and make multiple sacrifices before this tower more than any other. When man ate of the tree of knowledge his eyes were opened to the darkness. He physically saw the darkness but had no understanding or comprehension to conceive the real, but now hidden, truth. This made him afraid. This is where fear entered us. The knowledge of good and evil became apparent to our soul. Eating of this tree produced the opposite effect. It is not a matter of having eaten of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in order to “know” it. It is that we would no longer “know” it. We would no longer comprehend it or understand its depths, its roots. Darkness is whatever we do not have revelation of, the unknown. Whatever we do not have revelation of, we fear. Fear is torment, death. What you know, you eat. What you eat comes back out as words. Whatever you are full of will come out of

your mouth in the form of words. Those words create. It is not what you know that destroys and kills. It is what we do not know. What we do not know is what we need to know (have revelation of; comprehension and understanding). When we speak out of ignorance instead of revelation death is created. “And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you? So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.” Genesis 3:8-10 NKJ

No longer did they see God. Their eyes being opened made them blind to God. Therefore, they only heard Him. This is because they were no longer blind to lack of understanding in regards to good and evil. Their eyes were now opened to the lack of understanding of those things. This natural realm cannot see God. He is supernatural. Only supernatural SEEing reveals Him. Man opens his mouth and releases the words that he just ate of. Man released the words of ignorance. Man released the words of the knowledge of good and evil; darkness, fear. “I was afraid”, Adam declares. Fear was just created and released into the earthly realm...from man. “And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?” Genesis 3:11

25


TOWER OF KNOWLEDGE CONT. from pg 25

26

Adam’s response was to blame shift as was Eve’s. The real truth is nobody told them they were naked. Nobody filled them with fear. Nobody told them to hide. Nobody told them to cover themselves. It was what they ate of that filled them. They ate of a lack of understanding and comprehension of the real truth of the knowledge of good and evil. It was what was created from what they ate of that cast a stumbling block between God and man; the words...the SWORD divided them; it cut them apart. This feast from the tree was what separated good from evil and evil from good. This was the origin of the fall from immortality to mortality. This was the shift that took place in all eternity; the day that immortality fell from

God and became mortal; became ignorant; became a distinction between two realms (good and evil); became entrapped into an era that would draw them into obscurity; anachronistic. Those words that Adam spoke “I was afraid” created a time warp in eternity and trapped them in it. We say Satan (Lucifer) wanted to be like God or be God. No, it was us. But the real truth is we already were until we ate the fruit of that tree - that is when we BE came Off-Spring and the rivers split. We parted from the river through language. The seed of that fruit was conceived in our immortality and transformed us into a mortal BEing. The seed of mortality within the immortal Being continued to produce mortals triggering a world of pain and suffering that we created. The real truth behind the trees in the Garden of


Eden has been twisted for centuries. The creation story is a parable. It was never about a real wooden tree in the midst of a garden or a mortal man. However, it was written that way so that the reader would be filled with questions. God, then would give revelation to the one who simply asked in order to bring them back to their eternal destination which was their preposition. It was not the “tree” of Life or the “tree” of the knowledge of good and evil that we could or could not eat from. It is so much simpler. To eat is to consume; feast, absorb, inhale. We were to inhale and absorb life continually; which is all we knew. It is time we unwind this tree of the knowledge of good and evil. To have knowledge is to have ignorance and BE unaware. This tree before it became twisted from the decryption of our open eyes was not good and evil but rather God and Live (Godlive - Livegod). Our immortal life was completely dependent upon the consumption of itself...Life. But if we ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is the parable used to unveil the supernatural real truth which is that we cannot eat of the ignorance of God and live; we die, we become mortal. So there we were eternally living, breathing; inhaling God until we consumed the ignorance of Him. Man KNEW God! Man and God were One! Immortal man did not need the knowledge of Him. The knowledge of God is what divides us from Him. We must return to our roots of knowing. And there is a BIG difference in knowledge verses knowing. Knowledge root = Greek gnosis NO SEES (1 Corinthians 8:1). The word knowledge in Hebrew is daath...DEATH. Genesis 2:9. The garden experience found in Genesis is a parable.

27


The Bay Shines Laura Weeks

The bay shines like a smile, like yours And sings it’s morning song And everything is calm No storms No rain Just the whistling of the wind, pulling you back to the sea, back to me Walk these roads And you’ll find There’s no greater peace Than sunlight through the trees Golden rays and brisk air Reminding you I am here And you smile And you laugh And you cry And still the bay shines like hope on a face glazed over by grace Sing and dance The sun has turned you Into who you were meant to be The sand is soft And now the sun is setting Your eyes are getting tired And it’s not long now that the night will be here Now the sky is dark And the stars have secrets they keep in their own heaven And the moon is here And the bay still shines Reminding you I am here

28


The Course of Memory Georgia McCoy

Heat from the sun’s rays burned the blood stained Earth It shown upon a great man and a greater beast What a sight to see, a dual to the death Fist drawn back, breath held tight, powerful blows into the night Strikes as fast as lightning, landing blows that shake the ground Hooves as sharp as knives, with a torso of a man The ending you will never know; the story is yet to be told An epic battle between a God and a hellish creature Immortalized in this marbled statue, a tail of truth gets spun around So who is victorious if not us all, For now we have this statue to help us recall

29


The Frame Carmen Rodriguez

What is it not to walk and still stand tall. Not knowing how to grab what is in reach but hold on tight with such grasp, One may lose their head and know how to hold it high, With a body built of stone, yet feeling all alone. As smooth as the waters out at sea, to end up like the rough sands on the beach. Yet there are no eyes but with miracles we shall see With this body my shoulders hold up my strength. You would figure we found defeat, but even in the darkness some can see. There is no place where this body has not gone, A change in life does not keep me from know how to move on.

30


Ballad of the Journey Kaleb Sweet

A song, restless and determined shall never give up. It is but a messenger A shooting star.

Our universe is the Tree of the knowledge (daath...DEATH) of good (what is pleasing and agreeable) and evil (affliction and harm).

It flies onwards, it’s tempo steady like a harmonious melody. Never slowing down It will never stop. It is the essence of inspiration A kindled and friendly spirit. It echoes through the chest settling deep inside. From a tiny spark to a wondrous beacon of light. It takes its place in the world where it shines bright. The journey is over but the song shall never die.

We became the distinction; the differentiation of the two.

31


Centaur Heather Allen

Drowned in wine; they partied all night. For King Pirithous was to be wed. The Centaurs danced and were such a delight, Until the liquor went to their head. Body of horse and top of man they danced. Drunken laughter echoed through the halls They fought and they delightfully pranced, Until the Lapiths drove them to their fall. Looking now at this hardened story before A time when beast and man were more than alike. Now it is a different day, and this is just lore. A story in stone to our mind be its delight.

32


TOWER OF KNOWLEDGE CONT. from pg 27 Adam’s response was to blame shift as was Eve’s. The real truth is nobody told them they were naked. Nobody filled them with fear. Nobody told them to hide. Nobody told them to cover themselves. It was what they ate of that filled them. They ate of a lack of understanding and comprehension of the real truth of the knowledge of good and evil. It was what was created from what they ate of that cast a stumbling block between God and man; the words... the SWORD divided them; it cut them apart. This feast from the tree was what separated good from evil and evil from good. This was the origin of the fall from immortality to mortality. This was the shift that took place in all eternity; the day that immortality fell from God and became mortal; became ignorant; became a distinction between two realms (good and evil); became entrapped into an era that would draw them into obscurity; anachronistic. Those words that Adam spoke “I was afraid” created a time warp in eternity and trapped them in it. W e say Satan (Lucifer) wanted to be like

God or be God. No, it was us. But the real truth is we already were until we ate the fruit of that tree - that is when we BE came Off-Spring and the rivers split. We parted from the river through language. The seed of that fruit was conceived in our immortality and transformed us into a mortal BEing. The seed of mortality within the immortal Being continued to produce mortals triggering a world of pain and suffering that we created. The real truth behind the trees in the Garden of Eden has been twisted for centuries. The creation story is a parable. It was never about a real wooden tree in the midst of a garden or a mortal man. However, it was written that way so that the reader would be filled with questions. God, then would give revelation to the one who simply asked in order to bring them back to their eternal destination which was their preposition. It was not the “tree” of Life or the “tree” of the knowledge of good and evil that we could or could not eat from. It is so much simpler. To eat is to consume; feast, absorb, inhale. We were to inhale and absorb life continually; which is all we knew. It is time we unwind this tree of the knowledge of good and evil. To have knowledge is to have ignorance and BE unaware. This tree before it became twisted from the decryption of our open eyes was not good and evil but rather God and Live (Godlive - Livegod). Our immortal life was completely dependent upon the consumption of itself...Life. But if we ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is the parable used to unveil the supernatural real truth which is that we cannot eat of the ignorance of God and live; we die, we become mortal. So there we were eternally living, breathing; inhaling God until we consumed the ignorance of Him. Man KNEW God! Man and God were One! Im-

mortal man did not need the knowledge of Him. The knowledge of God is what divides us from Him. We must return to our roots of knowing. And there is a BIG difference in knowledge verses knowing. Knowledge root = Greek gnosis NO SEES (1 Corinthians 8:1). The word knowledge in Hebrew is daath...DEATH. Genesis 2:9. The garden experience found in Genesis is a parable.

33


Dragonfly Laney Pollock

When my large yellow sunflowers sway gracefully but bend dangerously. Yellow my sunflowers my sway dangerously large gracefully sway yellow sway bend dangerously but dangerously yellow large. Yellow bend sunflowers gracefully large gracefully sunflowers yellow yellow bend yellow large but dangerously sway when large. Bend bend sunflowers my dangerously but my gracefully dangerously yellow dangerously dangerously yellow but sway. My when sway bend large when dangerously but sunflowers dangerously sunflowers sunflowers sway dangerously large yellow. when but bend my gracefully sunflowers when gracefully large bend gracefully large when bend dangerously dangerously bend gracefully. large bend when yellow sunflowers bend larges way yellow sunflowers large my my but when gracefully but dangerously but.

34


TOWER OF KNOWLEDGE CONT. from pg 33 Our Solar System, our universe is our purgatory that we may turn back to whence we came. The sun is that flaming sword. Everything within this solar system orbits around it. The parable of us eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is what brought us here into this earth, this place of captivity. We cannot return unless we are overthrown, unless we are transformed, changed. We must perverse! Per Verse! Per = each. Verse = turn. Per = each. Verse = written creation. This means each of us written creations must turn. We must become His written creation individually that turns around from whatever brought us here in the first place, in which we initiated. It is far deeper than eating an apple from a tree. And it is not conforming, confessing, or buying into a specific religion. It is quite the opposite.

We are the ones that fell and somehow it is tied to us wanting knowledge. Scientists cannot have true understanding of what is beyond the sun. Even in orbiting the sun; it goes round and round. In order to truly know what is beyond it one must go through the sun. This is impossible for mankind. Some that have died and been brought back to life describe seeing this great light. What they are seeing is the open portal that exists in themselves from the reflection of the sun that their physical body cannot travel through. What is beyond it is beyond our human nature. The only way we can have access to this is through the supernatural. What is through that portal is the sustenance of living.

35


Immortal Protector Dawn Nahlen

Ready to strike the enemy with your bolt, I see your muscles getting tense. Your eyes are committed, to protect But is it your faithful or your place on the throne Fearful of losing it to someone unknown? Gods decide the fates of men. How hard life is When men decide the fate of gods?

36


TOWER OF KNOWLEDGE CONT.

Genesis 3:24 “So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.” Here we are revived from sickness, revived from discouragement, revived from violent exertion, revived from death. Here we are restored to true health, to true life. We think we have life here but that is not a reality. It seems to be a reality because this is all our mortal man knows. Yet there is life beyond that does not compare to what we know as life. What we know as life is nothing more than the reality of death. Beyond the sun, through that passageway that is protected and preserved, is life flowing forever. Our mind is not capable of comprehending this. It has nothing to compare it too. We compare everything we know to knowledge. This place is not a knowledge of any kind. How can I say this? The mysteries are buried supernaturally within the scriptures, within the texts, within language. If we will only but look between the lines we would see so much more.

Genesis 3:23 “Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.” We often say we are waiting “until”. We have been tilling for a long time! They were driven out so that they could cultivate the earth, so they could cultivate what they were made of. So does the garden no longer have ground, no longer have dirt? Is it no longer a garden? Maybe it was never what we think of as a garden to begin with. They were sent out so they could focus on cultivating what was in them and where they had come from originally and that is not an earthen place or space. To cultivate is to labor, prepare; to improve something. The Hebrew word till means to work, to serve as subjects, to make oneself a servant. We did this. The fact that we were driven out was His grace. Our ground that we are dwelling in is our purgatory, created to purge us from us becoming our own slaves. What does this mean? We were never slaves to anyone not even to God. We became slaves to ourselves when we chose to be determined to make a distinction between ourselves and God. God did not do this to us. We did it to ourselves. It is His amazing grace that even though we chose to depart from him, to draw a distinction between Him and ourselves, that He did not depart from us.

37


Old Road Alexia Feely Those old Texas back roads were engraved into her heart making an untraceable map too complex for simple minds.

And in an unrelenting crucial moment, it was gone, the memories I tried to keep present in her forever life, slowly losing their importance she forgets the names slipped from her mind, the faces that defined.

Perhaps forgetting made things easier. Her soul felt lighter and she could breathe again, but some things remained.

Some memories refused to leave her and kept her tied to the old state of which she called home.

Her soul was painted with the memory of open fields and clear sunsets, and her eyes reflected the wisdom gained through hardship during her time in the Lone star state.

38


39


TOWER OF KNOWLEDGE CONT. from pg 37

Words create things. Words form things. Whatever words you are full of are the words that you will create, produce, and manufacture. If you are full of love, your words will create love. If you are full of hate, your words will create hate. If you are full of peace, your words will create peace. If you are full of division and racism; anti-life, your words will create death, disunity, and slavery within yourself, which will manifest on the outside. If you are full of truth, you will create truth. If you are full of lies, deception, and manipulation, you will create misconduct, disorder, and injustice. You then will turn around and defend these things because those deceptions are your realities. Your reality is not really reality and what really is reality you disregard. God does not operate by our standards. He operates by His and He has given us the power to create our own world. He did this as a gift. Our greatest gift is WORDS! The question is what kind of world has our babbling brook of words created?

40

“Now the whole earth spoke one language and used the same words (vocabulary). And as people journeyed eastward, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and they settled there. They said one to another, “Come, let us make bricks and fire them thoroughly [in a kiln, to harden and strengthen them].” So they used brick for stone [as building material], and they used tar (bitumen, asphalt) for mortar. They said, “Come, let us build a city for ourselves, and a tower whose top will reach into the heavens, and let us make a [famous] name for ourselves, so that we will not be scattered [into separate groups] and be dispersed over the surface of the entire earth [as the Lord instructed].” Genesis 11:1-3 Amplified


The Two Strong Sides Marlise Cason

Bravery across his chest ready for a fight to start. Standing tall and broad within the headless moments. Bending knee with the cape of triumph armor, Instilled into the depth end of stallion’s invisible mind. Arm strong but waist beneath feely, Century standing strong and bold on the mountain. Waiting for the perfect time to attack back, Time has passed and years will never come. What lays beyond the trees and hills they will never see, We are riding and fighting for the last time.  

The word Universe comes from the Latin roots of “uni” meaning one and “vertere” meaning turned. The translation of universe is one turned. The fall of man recorded in Genesis is the parable of one turned.

41


Fall Apart Chastity Toliver

Half a leg makes it hard to walk, Right leg more than the left leg. How long your days must be with no arms, It must be hard to function like so. How will you see, smell, taste, and hear? None of your five senses used with no head. Abs like stone a six pack I see, Ribs standing out and a chest so firm. How will we all know the real you? For you we don’t completely know but a statue.  

42


TOWER OF KNOWLEDGE CONT. from pg 41

The Hebrew word for “name” i s shem, pronounced as shame. Upon the creation of our flesh bound existence God marked us with His name, His image. Something happened. Something shifted when we ate of that tree of the knowledge of good and evil. No longer did we recognize the cloak of nakedness covering us with an invisible God. Instead we wore the cloak of a new name, Shame! Shame - a painful sensation excited by consciousness; consciousness of guilt, consciousness of injury, consciousness of no longer disclosure but closure, consciousness of no longer immortal but mortal, consciousness of no longer free but bound.

own gods; immortality! “Yes, let us build this unified world because after all we are stuck here. Oh and let us create this space to build our governments, to build our ministries, to build our businesses, to make our name known and let us call it the Tower of Babble (the World Wide Web) so that we can all be on the same page of existence, speaking the same language, building the same agenda called Control!” These people’s binded blindness has caused them to be disillusionists.

“Let us make a name for ourselves...” “So that we will not be scattered...” “Over the face of the whole earth.” In other words...”Let us shame ourselves so that we can unitedly live in our misery of shame and hell (shell - sheol) instead of BEing the eternal individual God created us to BE. Let us all shamefully believe the same lies that bind us together. Let us all just remain bound. Let us all make a fool out of ourselves by working together to make one church or one government and call it Unity - building its city with bricks of deception because we can no longer understand and comprehend our eternal roots. Yes, let us shame ourselves so that we can stay together as our little group, all of us together worshiping our God and doing good deeds. This way we can make our way back to heaven instead of BE Coming individuals who inhabit the whole earth, which is our WHOLE self; returning to the consciousness of the possession of Eternity, the Truth, the Real, the Naked, the Presence of God as God’s

43


Victorious Georgia McCoy

Heat from the sun’s rays burned the blood stained Earth It shown upon a great man and a greater beast What a sight to see, a dual to the death Fist drawn back, breath held tight, powerful blows into the night Strikes as fast as lightning, landing blows that shake the ground Hooves as sharp as knives, with a torso of a man The ending you will never know; the story is yet to be told An epic battle between a God and a hellish creature Immortalized in this marbled statue, a tail of truth gets spun around So who is victorious if not us all, For now we have this statue to help us recall  

44


TOWER OF KNOWLEDGE CONT. from pg 43

The tree of the knowledge of good and evil is the tree of darkness. The way to the tree of life is through the light. Darkness is simply what we cannot see or comprehend naturally. It is not bad. Before we ate of that forbidden tree we were blind, blind to what the light revealed, the passage. The light was created so that we could find our way back to the darkness through the darkness illuminated within. We only saw in darkness. A darkness that is brighter, more luminescent than light itself. Another mystery that requires revelation. We did not see with natural eyes. We knew both darkness and light but we did not “know” the difference because we could not SEE the difference, they were one in the same. This is how man was able to know God, hear God, and see God. It was in the darkness, in the mystery, in the revelation itself. Man breathed revelation through his nostrils and lungs. He was not bound to this earth. For revelation is freedom from limitation. Limitation is death. “For God knows that in the day you eat of it (tree of knowledge of good and evil) your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:5 NKJ

We were gods. God’s gods! We were blind and unbounded to the naturalistic world. Our words created that bound world and when we ate of it we became it. We so desperately desired our former state that we unitedly worked together to build a passageway back to our previous existence. However, that passage was not the way back. Individually we created our own demise, and individually we would create our own backward destiny. This is why the Tower of Babel; the united world, the united church, the united religion of words cannot take you there. This city, this tower was named Babel because of what God did in that place. The word Babel means “confusion”. It was God that brought forth confusion. It was God that divided them and scattered them. That was His plan before they ever considered building this city. They wanted to be unified, together. God wanted them separated and divided throughout all the earth. He wanted them to be individuals not a common assembly. He wanted them to discover Him individually not unitedly. They did not want what God wanted. They had their own agenda. We say the enemy is the author of confusion. But is he really?

What bound us came from what we ate of, what returns us is what we spit out... WORDS! Those WORDS that we fell from and fell on was the SWORD that has been piercing us ever since. God is revealing our passageway back. We have created so much from words that has brought forth much destruction in our life and chained us to this world’s unrealistic reality. God has allowed the WORDS to bring forth much confusion for our preservation. He is usurping these WORDS, this SWORD, from creation itself to seeing beyond our natural eyes. We must become blind to SEE the WORD...this takes us out of the tower of babble SEAWARD to SEEWORD ~ the deep, the infinite, eternal, and immortal.

Some translations state “and you shall be as gods”. This flesh is mortality. Were we created to be mortals or immortals? “And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.” Genesis 3:2,3

45


Metaphors of Love Anna Moore Love is the endless sea The vast body of peace Waves fold as love brings on new chapters A current to live for eternity Each feathery wave guiding stronger than before Because you love me, I love you more Te amo, Je t’aime, Ich liebe dich Your voice is my favorite, gentle and sweet Come ride my wave, the water is not deep The ocean whispers, “ I love you,” in a joyful weep Love is the purest of gold The strong metal of wealth Riches grow as love reveals its value A currency that will never vanish Each lavish golden brick weighing more and more Because you love me, I will never be poor Ana uhibbuka, Jeg elsker dig Your eyes are magnificent, I are in awe Come spend what is yours, an unlimited bank You tell me you love me, A love none can outrank Love is a breathtaking gift The unpredictable present of mystery As time brings us closer, you tear away my wrapping A gift that is yours for the rest of your days Each lovely ribbon gone, revealing what is in store Because we grow and learn together, our love will always endure Wo ai ni, Saranghae, Aishiteru My greatest gift of all time is you Come unwrap your present, and untie the bows I’ll love you through highs, and I’ll love you through lows Love is the freshest of water The simple life line of survival Love flows throughout us like water down a stream The one true thing that brings me life Each delicious gulp quenching greater than before Darling you are the adventure that I am ready to explore

46


Ya lyublyu tebya, ik hou van jou Our love remains strong through ups and through downs Come drink this water, and quench your thirst I love you so much that my heart may burst Love is the biggest trophy of all The great symbol of victory My trophy shines bright as I constantly win you over A trophy I shall boast forever Each curve and wrinkle, just as beautiful as the last Because you are mine, my bragging rights are vast Kocham ciebie, Lubim ta Together we share a love that is raw Come claim what is yours, a trophy of love I love you forever, we fit like a glove Love is a blooming rose The beautiful bud of life Petals fall as love changes seasons A flower that will never die Each comforting thorn guarding the rose from war Because you protect me, I shall fear no more Se agapó, Aloha wau la ‘oe Your arms are my favorite, they hold me tight every day Come water your flower, this blossom of May The wind whistles, “I love you,” as each petal sways Your angel loves you; you keep me in line There is nothing more satisfying than your lips against mine Through sense of touch, emotion is felt Even in cold, his smile makes me melt Elijah, my darling, you hold my heart; Thomasville met us and now we won’t part When we runaway, if we shall run Sayonara small town, we are out to have fun We’ll shoot for the stars, and land on the moon Our spirits are one, I am you Life will be perfect when time let’s ours start Until then, beloved, don’t drop my heart.

47


Magic Words Kaleb Sweet

My words are magic! I have full control I use them to inspire others These people utter words that nip and bite The magic has twisted them into unseen weapons They strike with deep messages of despair and hate Innocent people suffocate in a black veil They know not the gift of magic The gift of words‌ Now, I am the only light left A lone star in the universe The people wish to extinguish me forever I won’t let them My words shield me from their dark They radiate in pulsating waves They banish the dark fog Remember, words are like magic Please use them with care!

48


The Gospel Tower Kim Fromkin

“But I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit sexual immorality. Thus you also have those who hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate.” Revelation 2:14, 15. NKJ The true gospel originates from the inner knowing. The go-spell comes from the tower of knowledge and from the tower of babble. This includes taking revelation, whether what you have received or what another has received, and repeating it day after day, year after year, and age unto age; creating doctrines from our knowledge and our words. This is how religion regenerates. An example of this is found in the literal parable of the children of Israel receiving fresh manna daily in the desert (Exodus 16). The word gospel is a Greek word euaggelion which means to bring good news. The true gospel is something good and something new day unto day and night unto night. However, our perception of the gospel is marred. We have taken the gospel and not only made a religion (a repetitive formation of beliefs) out of it but we have literally turned it into witchcraft. The word manna in Hebrew is man and it means “what is it”. Sounds simple enough, right? God wants us to have fresh manna daily. He wants us to have good news daily. He wants us to receive revelation daily, not get up every day and be or expect the same thing as yesterday or any other time. He wants us to know and eat of “what is it” so that we can have more. Instead we want to eat things that have already been sacrificed. Things that are old, things that are dead, things that are petrified, things that no longer have the power or strength to properly feed us. Therefore, we starve and live a life of malnourishment.

The true gospel, the good news, the fresh manna is our daily reward from the eternal realm within this earthen realm. It is a gift. It is a blessing. It is fresh language with a fresh interpretation. Its intent is to prosper us in every way not just what is visual and material. It is God’s kindness filling our empty reservoirs. The true gospel is His instruction that keeps us from destruction DAILY! It is the revelational tidings (the tide) that fills your well daily so that you and your family can be well. The true gospel is your salvation, what is saving you and what will save you. It is His advice, His declarations, His messages, His warnings, His intelligence day unto day of the accounts of your life that He knows. To Him the accounts of your life have already taken place. The true gospel is Him revealing to you the message you need that day in order to save you from what is known to Him before it ever happens. This is the true gospel. It is good for you and it is supposed to be new to you daily. Newsflash here: This good news does not always look, sound, or feel good but it is. When God wakes you up in the middle of the night and reveals to you that one of your children has been doing drugs that does not sound good. In fact it is probably the last thing you want to hear. But without that newsflash, that good news, that gospel - your child’s life could end in destruction quickly. It does not feel good when you have that inner pursuit to check your teenagers electronic devices and see things beyond your greatest imaginations. Yet God is so good to cause you to have that extremely uncomfortable inner pursuit to get you to check that device so that you could interrupt the destruction that is crouching at your family’s heels. We think this kind of news is bad because of the pain that comes with it. God has seen this as an event that has already taken place and it His salvation, His grace that reveals this gospel to us in order to save our life. Our adulterated beliefs have not been able to comprehend the true meaning of the gospel.

49


The Gospel Tower CONT. from pg 45 What worked for you yesterday is not meant to work for you today. The moment you try to repeat yesterday’s gospel is the moment that you take that gospel and cast it onto yourself, others, situations and therefore, casting a spell - witchcraft. In other words which craft, which cunning skill, which artifact, which old ingenious strategy are you gonna cast on today’s situation instead of receiving a new fact, a new strategy, a new instruction, new advice, or a new message directly from God to direct you the vessel? Today’s advice is for today. Yesterday’s instruction belongs to yesterday. Yesterday’s gospel has maggots today. You say, “how can that be? Jesus is the gospel? We are supposed to preach the gospel to everyone? His message is the same from generation to generation.” You, my friend, need revelation! Because of lack of understanding and revelation we have turned the gospel message into religion. Many Christians have taken this message, this lawful binding word door to door, nation to nation preaching the go-spell. Did Jesus go door to door? Did He go place to place saying, “Hey there I am Jesus the Christ. If you will say this prayer and confess your sins I will come into your heart and save you?” No He did not. Jesus did whatever the Father told Him to do at that moment. He went wherever the Father told Him to go. This way of Jesus, made a lot of people quite angry because they could not make sense of him. One minute He did things this way. The next minute it

50

was the complete opposite. He did not heal everyone he came in contact with. He did not minister to every person he met. He did not take on every person as his disciple. He was not interested in causing everyone to jump on the Jesus train and become His followers. He even told some of the people following him to go home. He was not interested in building or inviting anyone to join His ministry. He went from place to place so that the Son of God would be revealed from within not outwardly repeated.


Supermarket Hassles Richard B. Atkinson

Going to the grocery store to restock on some food Is not as easy as it looks, especially in a sour mood The store is packed to the brim and the parking lot is filled I have to make it in and out without getting myself killed The carts all act like racecars accompanied by shout I look around for something special only to find that it’s sold out I accidentally bump a display case causing it to fall Then I quickly look like I have not been there at all I try to gather up everything that’s on my list Searching around for some things that do not even exist I think that I have everything, double checking without a doubt I head up to the front so I can finally checkout One register is open and I arrive just in time A hundred and fifty people are ahead of me in line It’s finally my turn as the register checks some rice Then the cashier disappears for half an hour to check the price The grapes turn into raisins, and I’m completely going mad The orange juice has mold in it and the milk has now gone bad I get back to my car safely but I don’t go very far It’s so hot my food is baking itself within my car The day that I have had was fill with chaos and taut And the next place I buy food will be at a restaurant

51


Drawing by Katie Weaver

Red Figure Kaitlynn Tonkin

The fight will never end, No one will ever win. You are stuck here forever, Don’t ever drop your shield. You are stuck in time, An endless piece of art. Patroclus will remain As you will, fighting for his body The Trojan War is over But not for you Your helmet will never be removed You will never rest your head. You will remain forever Burned into clay.

52


The Gospel Tower CONT. from pg 50

The true gospel comes by way of revelation. The go-spell comes by way of repetition and mimicking. That gospell will have you drunk with spirits. That go-spell poisons you to the tolerance of wickedness within yourself, your home, your community, your church, your business, your nation, your earth. The gospell ruins lives. It breaks up marriages, it splits people apart, and wreaks havoc everywhere it dwells. That go-spell will make you think that in order to do the work of Jesus, be like Jesus, be obedient to the word that you have to minister to every person you come in contact with. God forbid if somebody comes up to you spilling out their guts about their issues in life. The go-spell in you will seize that opportunity to give that individual advice about how or what they should do. Sometimes we just need to listen because maybe the gospel, the good (God) news that the individual needs to hear resounds by way of them hearing their own voice. The difference in the gospel and go-spell is in the fact that the gospel will have you do what God tells you to do right then and there and if you hear nothing you do nothing regardless of offense. The gospell will have you chanting spells.

Examples: Go spell: Everybody needs to go on a mission trip. Gospel: Did God reveal to you that you need to go? Perhaps your mission right now is to go to work. Go spell: Come go with me to hear this person preach on healing. They are under revelation. Signs, wonders, and miracles are happening here. Gospel: Did God tell you to go? Perhaps the message you need to hear is reading a literary excerpt from someone who doesn’t even believe that God exists. Go spell: Let us go to this school to get our degree. Gospel: Did God tell you to? Or did He tell you I will teach you all things? Perhaps He will teach you all things through the learning process but your focus is not to be on the degree itself.

What does that look like? Basically you become nothing more than a parrot. You look like someone else, you act like someone else, you become someone else. If this person speaks a certain way you begin to speak that certain way. If this person does this you begin doing that. Then, ministries are set up to support these spells.

53


Reading A Book Richard B. Atkinson

Extraordinary things happen when reading a book You go to a new where and when The magic is there if you know where to look Let your imagination begin Places to go and heroes to meet And mysteries to understand You can go around the world without moving your feet And travel to a magical land There’re creatures and villains and treasures to find In Italy or down the block There’s no limit at all to what goes in your mind Like a treasure chest without a lock Imagination is open let the journey begin For all those who know where to look Open you mind for it knows no end All from just reading a book

Blowing A Bubble So much is as simple as blowing a bubble and the joy of watching it pop It’s a mystery of why God would create such a thing. As it is to tell bottom from top As simple as even a child can make, but only the careful sustain So much joy comes out of chasing them down and destroy them again and again To create all it takes is some water and soap and a carefully placed bit of air Let it go and it’s at the mercy of the breeze, this perfect and magnificent sphere When it falls it is gone and it cannot come back. It disappears without even a sound The joy comes in creating another one quickly and filling the air all around A child can make it the skilled can sustain and the fun never really can stop There is nothing as simple as making a bubble and the joy of watching it pop

54


The Gospel Tower CONT. from pg 53

Sometimes God is impressing upon you to go and do these things but it is up to the individual to seek God for themselves as to whether or not they are following them or Him. I could list thousands of examples of the differences between the two. The sad thing is that I too have been a part of this and continue to see these things going on with almost every person I come in contact with. The root of this is we have a lack of revelation of the true Gospel. This is exactly what Jesus is talking about when He gives the warning to Pergamos about Balak, Balaam, and the Nicolatians. These individuals had taken the fresh manna of God, butchered it, and repetitiously gave it out which in turn seduced mankind away from God. Nothing has changed today. The story of these three individuals is another literal parable to reveal something deeper within. These books of Revelation are to reveal that what was, what is, and what will be has been consistently revolving. The parable tells that Balaam was a prophet hired by Balak to curse the Israelites. He was influenced by the love of reward. It is interesting that the word gospel means reward. Balaam desired to please Balak. In Balaam’s efforts to curse God’s children he was interrupted by God. At one time he was respected by the Jews for they believed that he was a man endowed with the gift of prophecy. They listened to his prophetic utterances as the voice of God but his love for reward

changed things and he became known to the Jews as a most abandoned deceiver. Make note that Balaam was not a prophet of God even though the people’s beliefs had mistaken him to be such. He was a wizard, a sorcerer, a necromancer who had powers of wickedness. His power could not withstand the power of God Almighty. Balaam’s pay from Balak was the reward of divination. Balaam practiced divination using a magical scroll. The reward of divination is witchcraft. Balak took Balaam and brought him to the high places of Baal. These high places were cultic platforms, places of worship, and places elevating idols.

Even though the power of God stripped Balaam of his ability to openly curse the Israelites he was able to seduce the children of Israel to bring curses upon themselves. Balaam loved to earn money and to receive praise from the people for his works. He cast a spell on them treacherously by convincing them to give him a bribe and him taking it. Balaam is the literal representation to

greed and deceiving people for money. He was a double-minded man. He was antagonistic to the truth. He was literally insane. Balaam and Balak tried three times to maneuver around God and curse the people. Because this did not work Balaam devised a scheme to tempt them to commit fornication against God from within their own hearts and minds. Basically, God’s shield of protection was over the people so that evil could not penetrate them from the outside. However, if Balaam and Balak could find men from within the Israelite community to act against God within their own beliefs, their own hearts they would bring evil and cursing upon themselves by committing idolatry which in turn would enslave them. Revelation 2:14 says “But I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam...”. This holding to the doctrine of Balaam is a representation of holding onto religious instruction and religious teaching brought on by the love of money, the love of reward, and the love of praise. The elevation of mankind on the religious platforms and worship centers, which is a mockery of God, has become an elevated place of idolatry. The second part of Revelation 2:14 says, “who taught Balak to cast a stumbling block before the children of Israel...” This part of the verse is the representation of a trap being set and the people setting off the trigger of their own trap that would curse them or kill them. It draws man into error. It causes them to give up their honor and bow themselves to religion instead of God alone. These platforms are a trap. These worship centers are a trap. These money making, reward giving, sacrifice of praise institutions, teachings, and schemes are the traps. When you fall for the deception that this is God you pull the trigger of your own trap. But let me makes this clear…

Painting by Richard B. Atkinson

55


Inside my Mind Wyatt Visnon

I am spiraling in every direction

Because it is.

uncontrollably, Unfortunately,

It’s not like school. My world

I have ADHD, Depression and anxiety. Is just cruel.

56

My medicine tries to be,

Everyone thinks I’m crazy, I can’t

but isn’t enough for me.

Remember

Every feeling contradicts the others.

But I’m not lazy, I get distracted, acted

It’s like juggling in a circus,

Like I couldn’t hear.

but the work is

Can you repeat that? What page?

Not holding my focus.

Yes, I’m paying attention, I confess

I want to do that, over there, instead.

I’m such a mess, you can probably guess.

Or maybe surf in the bed? Maybe

See it on the paper, I’m not made for

watch a snake shed.

Inks, pens, glue, tape or

Sounds boring, sounds fun.

Anything permanent.

Ready to run, wait for the sound

I changed my mind

of the gun.

Only the blind can see

But now I’m over thinking,

These scribbles I’ve left behind.

My excitement turns to doubt.

I am trying to brainstorm.

Let me out,

Am I sick? My forehead’s warm,

I’m that deep breath holding in,

Do I have mesothelioma?

I’m worried. Is this for me?

I’m fine, No I’m not. I’m spinning

Can I do it, Can I commit?

Hold me down.

Am I unfit? Maybe I should quit.

I can’t be stilled. My drink is

Just admit, I can’t.

Always spilled. It has to be refilled

Suddenly I’m sad, I’ve lost my glow.

Again and again,

I remember my dad who didn’t show,

Where’s my pen? I lose everything,

And the answers I still don’t know.

I hear a ring,

The free throw that didn’t go

It’s my phone, I missed my appointment,

In.

I don’t have ointment, but I have pills

I break down,

For everything that’s wrong with me,

Wipe the tears with my thumb,

ADHD, depression, anxiety.

Feel numb, feel dumb.

Can’t you see?

Feels impossible to overcome


Drawing by Katie Weaver

The Gospel Tower CONT. from pg 55 God is OMNI. Therefore He is ALL and He is in everything. One cannot escape Him no matter who, where, or no matter what. He will even use these things to reveal to one the truth. He reveals it in order to detox us from all the toxins that we partook of as we were under the spell of religion called “gospel”. Remember earlier that there is just as much life in the river of good as there is evil. When we receive the revelation of these things our eyes are opened to the real truth, we are healed, and we are set free. The third part of this verse in Revelation 2:14 says, “...to eat things sacrificed unto idols and to commit fornication”. Whenever you see sacrificed unto idols

in scripture you always see fornication or sexual immorality with it. They go hand in hand. God gave us the gospel in manifested human form to reveal to us the endless depths of God; to reveal to us that God has fresh revelation, fresh manna for us daily. Mankind has taken that bread, those revelations and offered them as sacrifices to the people to make money and receive rewards. Man has butchered the true gospel. Idols are the imagery of God that we have put on a pedestal and received our manna from instead of receiving it directly from the source presently...God. Those revelations have been cast into a spell by God’s gods; God’s imagery, us humans.

The true gospel is not Christianity. The true gospel is not a denomination. It is not based on a race, a culture, a society, a religion, a belief, a person, a nation or its governments. The true gospel cuts across ALL of these because it is revelation from the Creator to His creation. God created the Muslim man. God created the Egyptian; the Pharaoh. God created the Jew, the Gentile, the man, the woman. God created the homosexual. God created the rapist. God created the murderer. God created Satan. God created the diversity of mankind. It is what we are eating of that is causing us to commit adultery against God and become enslaved by our own created sin. Revelation 2:15 says, “Thus you also have those who hold the doctrine of the Nicolatians, which thing I hate.”

57


The Gospel Tower CONT. from pg 57 The LDS bible dictionary describes Christianity as the belief in the dispensation of the gospel (very interesting choice of words) which means: a period of time in which the Lord has at least one authorized servant on the earth who bears the holy priesthood, has the keys, and who has divine commission to dispense the gospel to the inhabitants of the earth. The word dispensation means to distribute, to deal out to different persons, to bestow a system of principles and rites enjoined. Christianity may not seem so to the natural but if you look closely all around in the world of Christianity you will see that it too is a religion. In the religion of Christianity the gospel is dispensed on tracks and distributed door to door, also nation to nation under the header of missions. The gospel is dispensed through a selected and authorized servant known as a pastor, preacher, or some form of a leader who has been selected by another religious leader either from within the local community or by a Christian organization. Their belief is that they have been chosen by God to do so. Priests, bishops, deacons, and elders fall under this same category in the sense of the dispensational gospel system. This dispensation of the gospel is the management, oversight, and administration over the good news of God. This system also focuses on the laws of obedience; the laws against sin; the laws of the New Testament, the laws of Jesus, the laws of how to, what to, and who. The gospel is not a religion. The gospel is not Christian. Mankind repeated some of the actions and words of Christ and created a religion labeled Christianity. The gospel that Jesus spoke of directed the hearers to receiving and hearing directly

58

from God, the Father. Jesus always pointed to the Father. Jesus never called himself Jesus, the Christ, or the Messiah. When asked who He was, He said “I Am”. Even though Jesus was the Son of God, the Christ, the Messiah does not mean He was a Christian. To be a true follower of Christ is to be a follower of the Father daily. That means we are to follow the Father’s leading, the Father’s voice, His instruction, His gospel (message) daily. When Jesus said to go and preach to all the world that did not mean literal preaching of the same message. It is deeper than that. Preaching the gospel is heralding the revelation of God through our Being. That comes with signs, wonders, and all kinds of miracles; not magic, not sorcery, not necromancing ( n e c k romancing). The gospel is the revelation of the supernatural presence of an invisible unknown God. Preaching it is by

way of living it. The Christian religion has turned the gospel into a marketplace. This is partly what the Nicolatians were doing. The other part of the Nicolatians doctrine was Antinomianism. Antinomianism is the belief that obedience to the law is motivated by an internal principle rather than from any external compulsion. Their belief is that there are no moral laws God expects Christians to obey. Their doctrine is that Christians are not required to observe the Old Testament law as means of salvation. This doctrine misapplies the meaning of God’s grace and favor. The Nicolatians were double-minded. They were Christians following the law of the dispensation of the gospel and they were Antinomianism following the doctrine of grace, grace, and more grace. Both of these are forms of religion. These doctrines of Balaam, Balak, and the Nicolatians being taught amongst the people seduced God’s people to hearing from them instead of from Him. They could not cause a curse to come upon the Jews, but they did lure them in with their go spell messages and tactics to cause them to bring a curse upon themselves. It caused God’s people to eat a butchered up leftover piece of bread (word, message) from an idol (that person you pay every week etc. to feed you a message from God). In the day of Moses when the Israelites were in a desert place God gave them fresh bread, not Moses. God did. This parable is in correlation with the messages to the churches of Revelation. In the day of Moses when the people tried to keep the fresh manna to have leftovers for the next day it became full of maggots. Maggots are fly larvae. The scripture states in Exodus 16:20, “But some of them left part of it (manna) until morning, and it bred worms and stank.”. The bread bred worms. This is key. The Bread bred Lord of


the Flies when it was not given fresh daily. The children of Israel knew better to eat it so why don’t we? This is a literal parable. When you partake of the go-spell (the worm infested sermons) it poisons you. God specifically stated in Revelation 2:15 that He hates this. It is not so much that we commit adultery against Him that he hates. It is more so what it does to His children spiritually and physically.

way to God. No! I Am is the Way! And that Way is by way of revelation from the Father alone! What Jesus said and did was revelation of the Father. What I say and write is not from me, it is the revelation from my Father; not for the reader to repeat but to become the Revelation of God individually. This is the true gospel.

The Greek word for fornication from Revelation 2:14 is the word porna. This is where we get the English word pornography. While our earthen focus is on a sexual act it is much deeper than that. The meaning of this word porna is a prostitute; one who yields themselves to defilement for the sake of gain. It is not that we defile God; we are. But more so we defile us. Another meaning of this word is to sell. Religion, the Christian religion alone, is a multi-billion dollar business. Guess who makes it so rich? Those who adopt the religious beliefs of tithing and giving monetary gifts known as sacrifices and offerings. The gospel is being sold by the imagery of God for their own gain. But yet they call it preaching the gospel. Another meaning for fornication is the word peprasko which means to sell oneself into slavery; one who is bribed to give himself up wholly to another’s will; entirely under the control of the love of sinning. We have not understood the word sin. This explanation is SIN. Selling Into Nonsense!!! The Holy bible is not the gospel. It is a part of it. The purpose of the bible is to bring the reader into revelation of an Almighty God in an eternal realm here on earth. The misunderstandings of the gospel has bewitched us into go and cast a spell on someone else so they can believe and become the same as you. The gospel has become a false representation of the God entity. The reason God hates this go spell methodology is because it is enslaving His children to ALL sorts of things. Because of the go-spell we constantly mimic our peers, who many are under the spell already, and it has lulled us to sleep. Yet the whole time we are thinking this is the

59


60


I am a Myth Brooke Beasley I am a Myth, I can see the happiness flow out of others. I can feel it in the air but never quite grasp it. I can hear it slowly drain from people’s voices. New York City, the beginning of destruction. Maybe one day I’ll look and see the city the same. But for now it’s heart break. It seeps in the soles of my shoes and up my body From the ground. I can taste the anxiety in the air But I am happy, I swear. Nobody is going to rain on my parade. My favorite color is blue, Azul in Spanish, I look up to the leaders in my time of great mental Instability. Time goes by. I feel like I may be happy. I think I can see the color Of the sun, my heart is mending like The city growing up again Into a skyline.

61


Dated

Taylor Smith Shoulders held back in solemn silence, A man’s tight torso, sculpted thick legs Looked over by thousands of people Every day. He is ancient, indifferent. A remembrance turned to stone. People gawk at him like he is a specimen. They are amazed at history, Made desperate by the distance of time, They turn their heads from this distance moment Back to the forgetting Of their blank telephone screens.

62


Bad Day at the Beach Richard B. Atkinson

63


What is it to Be American Daniel Thrash

Is it allowing our elders to rot in bedlam In what we call senior living centers, Screaming in the dark While caretakers sit by Pretending to be deaf? Is it ignoring our brothers and sisters Walking the streets alone, Laying in bug infested shelters, consequence Of their own consequence, misfortune Of their own misfortune, tormented By their minds, or locked up Being abused, raped, used, Killed in private prisons Over decades for nonviolent Drug offences? Is it never remembering the swaths of sons And daughters neglected, who spend Their childhoods as orphans, forgotten, Waiting, wondering why they have No family of their own? Is it predator drones in faraway lands Dropping plutonium tipped missiles On populated villages, killing Dozens of civilians and causing birth Defects for decades to come? Is it a confused old lady Led out of a hospital in the freezing Dead of night in nothing but a robe Because she has no health Insurance? Is it corporate entities and our billionaire Donor class giving politicians and their super Pacs billions of dollars ensuring that America is nothing more Than a plutocracy?  

64


The Observation Tower Kim Fromkin

“Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth (I will use good to destroy and I will use evil to destroy you). He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches;” Revelation 2:16, 17 As in the days of Elijah, the days of Isaiah, the days of Jonah, the days of Jeremiah, the days of Noah, the days of Jesus, and even unto today; the people refuse to listen to God. They will hear religion; they will hear Christianity, they will hear Islam, they will hear Hinduism, they will hear what they have been taught for centuries but they will not hear God. This is how history has been able to repeat itself from generation to generation. Wisdom cries out in the streets but no one is listening. People’s religion has caused them to have a slivering-forked tongue. They speak out of two sides of their mouth luring their victims in by the smoothness of their words; cleverly convincing them to join them, to join their groups, their congregations, to join their family of believers, to join their religion. They are unable to see or hear anything outside of their religion. Their perspective is not God’s but gods. They stand in the streets, on the squares, at the city gates, and in the temples preying not praying. There is more unity in division than there is in truth. True unity comes from within. It is produced from a private place of intimacy and communion with God alone. The observation tower is the erection of what we have focused our vision on and is what is keeping people from hearing God and repenting. The word observe means to keep the eyes on; to hold into view. It means to utter or express, as a remark, opinion, or sentiment. It also means to keep religiously; adhering to practice. The observation tower has been built from the religious observances that

one has created from their utterances, expressions, and opinions that has led them to these practices by way of what they have set their eyes on. In the natural realm the more you focus on one individual thing the harder it is to see anything else. In the supernatural when you focus on one individual thing the easier it is to see everything. The question is where is your gaze?

in the end write...the word of God is a sword. His words are sharp. They cut with one blow. God is cutting down the towers we have created and He is carving out a tunnel deep within.

65


Losing My Religion Kim Fromkin

Consider this! That’s you in the corner. That’s you seeking One for answers, seeking One for truth? What if all your efforts have been thrashing you around? What if I could show you all the things that you will go through? All those things that you never thought of. You enter the congregation, the house of cards, in hopes that you will find the answers. Eager to learn the things that could satisfy these pangs of hunger. In walks a rugged man. Roadmaps etched in the lines of his skin. Stench secreting from his clothes. His hair soiled and swept about his face in solemn silence. He removes his gear and sits down. People scatter, but stare. An elderly man approaches the sojourner, bends down, and whispers something to him. The stranger peacefully rises, loads up his baggage, and walks out the door just as heavy and famished as when he entered in. Surprised, you wait until the end of the service to speak to the elder. “What happened to the stranger that walked in? Where did he go?” you ask.

66

“I asked him for some form of identity. He had none. I had to ask him to leave.” the elder said. “Why? Aren’t we supposed to help people like him?” “We do not have the means to help people like him. We have to help ourselves.” Your heart sinks. You drop your head as the elder walks away. But the questions do not seem to stop. Again, you walk up to the elder.

“Excuse me sir. There’s an empty house in the back of this property. Couldn’t the traveler stay there for a while?” “No, he cannot! That’s a liability.” he says. “Why do you raise money to send people across the world but don’t help the one that just walked in the door?” you ask. “Are you questioning my authority?” “No sir, I’m just trying to help.” “We have everything under control. Did you sign the membership papers yet? Until then, we cannot watch over your soul.” Puzzled you walk away, wondering if you said too much. Perhaps you didn’t say enough. You continue searching in need to follow something, unsure of what you’re looking for. Weeks go by. One day you enter the assembly, anticipating the melodies of your favorite psalmist, Sarah, on the keys only to discover she is missing. Some time goes by, still she nor her children are present, only her husband is in attendance. Concerned you ask around to learn that Sarah’s husband, an elder and community leader, had an affair with a co-worker. Sarah was faulted for the affair. The elders named her an “unsubmissive wife” and advised her and the children to seek another congregation. No one says anything. Everything is so hush-hush. Again, you begin to ask questions, but you come up empty. You know this isn’t right, but still you need answers. You continue for another year. You are a part of a small group within the congregation. Every week your group meets. For once, you feel a deep sense of connection with the people of this group. Then one night around 9 o’clock the phone rings. Your husband answers. It is the group leader. You see the smile on


your husband’s face slowly fade to a sigh. He hangs up the phone. “Our small group has been cancelled indefinitely.” he says. “But why? Did something happen?” you respond. “No, they just said that the leadership has decided to revamp some of their small groups and ours is one of them.” You ask around about this decision only to hear that the elders felt the small group had become too large and they feared a split amongst the congregation. Frustrated and only wanting to know the truth, you begin searching on your own. Countless hours, days, weeks, years of studying goes by. The more you learn the more questions you have. You ask the teachers, the leaders of religion but it appears you anger them with your questions. They begin to make complaints and accusations about you, warning others in the congregation to keep their distance. They have created a name for you, Rebel. They say you are not submitting to authority. They give no answers, but make sure to hold you to a list of rules, commandments, ceremonies, and rituals that you must do to be holy, sacred, and pure. Why? They perform all these rites, but their hands are dirty. You are not allowed to congregate with sinners. They say homosexuals are welcome until they enter in. Then they are cast to the wayside if they do not convert to the beliefs of the congregation. God forbid if you disagree. You will be added to the list of wolves in sheep’s clothing. You start to wonder who the real wolf is. Pressured by the leadership and its congregation, you have a choice to make. You can sign the document that will engraft you into a body of believers, indoctrinated by their beliefs and systematic ways of doing things, or you can be an outcast. But you are so desperate to be accepted, desperate to fit in, desperate to be a part of a family, desperate to do what is right, desperate to find the answers that will fill your ravenous hunger. You succumb. Signing the document that makes you official, you have become one of them. Now you can

finally join the prayer team, worship team, leadership team, evangelical team, and you can teach if it’s approved by the ones watching over your soul, of course. Consider this! That’s you in the corner. That’s you on stage blindly performing your religion. Many years go by. Not only have you joined a body, you are now a teacher and a leader acting out the very things you once questioned. Bewitched, you think you’ve been “called” to go out into the world to make disciples and teach others the “truth,” speaking at many gatherings, leading groups in the city, calling it “unity in the community.”

You meet once a month on Saturdays, going door-to-door, on the “other side of the tracks,” proudly sporting your bright green “be a light” t-shirt, reading from a script, saving the souls of the eternally damned, but only for the ones that repeat after you. Meanwhile, you haven’t even recognized that your indoctrination, your religion, has imprisoned you with chains. You say you are free. You even sing songs about freedom. Are you free? Why do you fear outside relationships with anyone who believes different than you? Every morning you pray for your children as they go to school cautioning them to

67


avoid others who have different beliefs, in fear they may be led astray. You advise your children not to follow other people, yet you do not follow your own advice. It is evident you have “become one” with the crowd. You’re so kind to everyone. Quite the philanthropist actually. After all, it’s not you that’s needy, it’s everyone else. All is well. Or is it? Are you truly concerned about those whom you’ve been serving? Or are you more excited to receive the trophy from your leadership as you give them the headcount of the souls you rescued that month? How about your new role on the board of directors? What happens when someone refutes your religion or your political views? You get offended, cast judgments, call them weird. As long as you agree with your religion and others who are practicing it all is well. Until you wake up one day and realize that what you were once seeking has yet to be found. All is not well. What has happened to you? How hostile, fearful, and judgmental you’ve become. Oh, the many titles and identities you have accumulated. How can you teach the truth when you’re not sure of it yourself? Are you just parroting someone else’s beliefs? Is that a mask you’re parading around town, trying to blend in? Who are you? Consider this! That’s you in the corner. That’s you in the dark trying to find your way. Have you gone too far? Perhaps you haven’t gone far enough. What if all these fallacies have brought you to the catalyst of becoming the Truth? What if I could show you that going through all those things was all a part of the process? You enter in a one-year sabbatical, a personal sanctuary, aside from all traditions seeking once again for answers. Isolated, you fast, study, and pray like never before. Your one-year sabbatical soon becomes a four-year detox. It’s a cold January morning. You’ve just awakened from something surreal. Someone of great height comes to you in your sleep. He extends his hand out to you and speaks with authority. “Here, this is for you!”

68

In his hand is a large tearshaped diamond, except the rounded part was fat like a heart with no split. You begin to examine it, even knock on it as it was quite large, wondering if it’s real. You wake up. Was this just a dream? Groggy you stumble into the kitchen, pour yourself a cup of coffee, and make your way back to the bedroom. You plant yourself in your almond colored leather recliner, wrap yourself up in your knit blanket, your hair’s a mess, you haven’t even brushed your teeth, and you don’t care. You have questions. Who was this visitor? Was it real? Was it just a dream? You start googling diamonds. And there it is. The diamond you saw in the man’s hand is on your computer screen. You click on the image. This diamond was found in 1905, in a mine, in Kimberley, South Africa. Chill bumps rise on your arm. You know you’re onto something. But what is it? You have studied your name before which means “from the royal meadow” (sheknows. com). Could all of this be connected? Aware that your name has meaning; that it signifies the beginning of your human existence and is what creates your life script (Benes 217). You continue in your research on diamonds. You search through various resources, discovering facts about how diamonds are created in the depths of the earth through heat and pressure. How they are transported from the deep to the surface (geology.com). Suddenly you see the word kimberlite; that it’s a diamondbearing rock within the earth’s mantle (Stone 62). You wonder what this means. You open the dictionary app on your phone and look up the word. Kimberlite comes from a micaceous peridotite, an igneous rock, low in silica but high in magnesium. It is the substance that forms diamonds. You set down your phone. Tears begin to fill your eyes, as you begin to reflect. Your whole life people have ridiculed you saying you’re “rough around the edges. Your edges need to be smoothed out.” But what if they’re not? What if you’re

supposed to have rough edges? Maybe you are that igneous rock. Maybe the rough edges, this igneous rock, this brilliant white flame of magnesium found in your core, is what gives you the power to produce the most precious gems of all. Maybe you were never created to be smooth. Maybe you weren’t supposed to be like everybody wanted you to be. Maybe all your questions are your rough edges. Maybe the One in which you have been seeking is finally showing you who you are and why you are. Maybe the reason why you sought religion was because you didn’t know your identity. You don’t look like anybody else. Why do you try to be like somebody else or believe like somebody else? Years have gone by. You walk into a gathering. You look around to see a different kind of congregation. All sorts of different cultures, ages, races, beliefs are present. Everyone here has questions, including the teacher. No one is judged for their differences, instead it seems like the differences are embraced. You feel at home. You sense more unity in this classroom full of diverse students than you have ever sensed in an institution where everyone believes the same. Maybe it’s not diversity that you sense, but rather university. Consider this! That’s you in the corner. That’s you in the spotlight losing all your religion. What if I told you the One you’ve been searching for was right there with you the whole time? What if it took you losing your religion, to gain it, to losing it all over again, to get you there? What if I told you that it was your own religion that was inside of you that drew you to religion in the first place? What if I told you that at the center of every person’s religion is the One that everyone is searching for? What if I told you that once you make your way through religion, through its chambers, through the turbulence of your beliefs, your thoughts, and everyone else’s, is where you will find the One, the Truth? What if all these paradoxes are truths? Perhaps I have said too much. But what if I haven’t said enough?


Works Cited Benes, Clarence H. and John E. Steinbrink. “Living up to Your Name.” Social Studies, vol. 87, no. 5, Sep/Oct 96, p. 228. Print. “How Do Diamonds Form?” Geology, geology.com/articles/diamonds-fromcoal/. Web. 14 Oct. 2017. R.E.M. “Losing My Religion.” Warner Bros. 1991. CD. Stone, Rebecca and Robert Luth. “Orthopyroxene Survival in Deep Carbonatite Melts: Implications for Kimberlites.” Contributions to Mineralogy & Petrology, vol. 171, no. 7, July 2016, pp. 1-9. Print. www.sheknows.com/babynames/name/kimberly. Web. 14 Oct. 2017. Acknowledgments I would like to thank my professor, Dr. Salutsky, for piercing me with the words “church” and “indoctrination” which caused my wheels of thinking to begin to turn. This gave me direction in what to write about. My essay was inspired by the lyrics and music from a song written in the 80s by Peter Buck, sung by Michael Stipe, and the band R.E.M. in the song Losing My Religion. I am grateful for the continuous melody of this song which helped me to loop the words of my essay back around to carry on the momentum of rhythm throughout the writing. The utmost appreciation goes to my Father, God; my best friend, the lover of my soul, who carved out this essay within me years before through experience. Not only was it etched within, but God gave me the words in this timing, so that I could write it on paper enabling others to have a glimpse into what religion looks like.

69


Ambition Titus L. Butler II Pain is temporary But pride is forever My education is necessary No matter the storm I will Get through the weather Motivation is the key Which is why I have so much activity I always believe in myself I always have ambition Which makes me win Success is my main goal This is my life, to have full control My time is limited The clock ticks minute to minute With errors, I would have precision With the right steps, gives me vision To get things done is my passion Which is my satisfaction My life is full of dedication By showing that I would get accreditation Improvement is always a mission Which gives me the ambition To do anything at all costs Doing this will not make me soft My motto is Rise, Grind and Eat So everything can be complete With me having ambition May cause tension Ambition makes me best So I can pass the test Positivity will take me a long way My parents told me to always have faith.

70


Pig Sauls Road Benjamin Gardner

Pig Sauls Road! Pig Sauls Road, all the dogs and my cousins gone mudding down Pig Sauls Road. Momma told me, Sugar, study your lessons. I don’t want a life in the kitchen for you. Let the other kids trifle and learn to shoot rifles. You’re going all the way through school. Pig Sauls Road! Pig Sauls Road, school bus couldn’t make it all the way down Pig Sauls Road. Bring your ATV’s or your old Chevys, all the dogs and my cousins gone mudding down Pig Sauls Road. Had trouble with word problems, but Daddy he’d say, “Erlinda, they’ve given you what you need stop chewing up your pencils—concentrate— and separate the wheat from the weeds. Pig Sauls Road! Pig Sauls Road, I could hear them holler round the bend down Pig Sauls Road. Bring your SUV’s or your Toyotee’s, all the dogs and my cousins gone mudding down Pig Sauls Road. I graduated from college, got a good job using my knowledge, but it wasn’t my destiny. When Momma died, I bought the cottage. I take care of Daddy. He’s going on ninety-three. Pig Sauls Road! Pig Sauls Road, ain’t ever seen a sight like mudding down Pig Sauls Road. Bring your four-wheelies or your motorcyclees, all the dogs and my cousins gone mudding down Pig Sauls Road. I once tried veggie, now I’m mostly meat and deli, got bows and arrows behind my doors. Atlanta was okay while it lasted, but I’m glad I grew past it and tore up my pedigrees. Driving with me knees! Eating pepperonis, With my morning paper opened up in the noontime breeze. Bring your mighty Humvees or whatever you please, me and my dog, Savannah, mud-bogging down Pig Sauls Road. Say, bring your Subarus or whatsoever you choose, all the dogs and my cousins gone mudding down Pig Sauls Road.

71


72

Inkwell 2018  
Inkwell 2018  
Advertisement