Wesley Collegeâ€™s Literary and Art magazine Fall 2010
Cover by Myles Miller
Delaware Bay, Afternoon, December 5
He Wonders His embrace, Warm and familiar, His touch, Soft and gentle, His kiss, Sweet and lovely, And he wonders Why I love him. His eyes, Like melted chocolate, His smile, Like a sunset, His hands, Like a key to my lock, And he wonders Why I love him. His laugh, Makes me laugh too, His voice, Makes me listen, His words, Make me remember, And he wonders Why I love him. All of these things Yet so much more, And he wonders Why I love him. These are why I love him. -Melissa Boyd
Through my genes I have seen, For my pa and his pa were not clean. It started with only one, But that day turned into a ton. Slowly, day by day, My life, it slipped away. Marriage, only for some time, Kids, now a tough mountain to climb. Family was here, Now forgotten with beer. The hard wet wind drives the normally PA, DE, it stuck with me, placid bay upon the upper reaches of Stubborn, I just couldn’t see. the shore, biting the feet of dunes I cleaned up my act, looking suddenly weak and fallible. Only to once again go back. Eyes almost closed against wind-born Finally, I might be strong, shards of silica and sleet, vulnerable under this baptism of fire’s antithesis, Temptations, they just create what’s wrong. Today, I see myself one man, coat buttoned against the northwind’s If not, hit me across the face with a pan. ferocity, like that time in Alaska, Family’s back, congratulatory, when, the temperature having dropped to I want to stay here, end that old story. fifty below, shirts and parkas had been layered for protection against the hawk, My days, they might be numbered now, My past, a monster without a howl. or like the fire-fighters, drawn tight Like an angry green slate broken into rolling fragments of a sea, an army of water in olive drab, breakers white fuming crash haphazardly upon the shore like samurai. Bullets of ice and sand describe this free-for-all between the gods of sea and sky, of wind and H20.
around the neck for maximum protection against the heat and burning, cindered air then, speak, suddenly, to no one in particular about how God’s grace is universal, open the eyes and jacket, and smile in the company of friends.
When the bottom of my world dropped out, I drowned. The water rushed over my head; the sky was obscured; light vanished as I was buried under cold, opaque blackness. I had no sense of direction. Either I was down twenty fathoms where no point of light could reach, or a great storm raged above, obscuring the sun and blocking its entry through the water. I grew used to the gloom. I assumed that without a light peeking through the murk, there was no way out, and I acquiesced, believing I was destined to be a denizen of the shadows. But I began to wonder, what if I summoned my strength and I pushed off from the ocean floor? What if I jumped? What if I swam up and out? What if it didn’t matter whether there was a light to guide me or not? What if I just called for the courage to move? And I pushed with my feet. And I pulled with my hands. And I kicked with my legs. And I screamed from my soul. And I kept my eyes open. And I broke free. As I surfaced with the force of a bullet and broke the tension, that line between water and air, the sun was glistening all around me. I breathed deeply and filled my lungs with life. Water droplets sparkled with iridescence as they shimmered on my skin and hair. I lifted my eyes to the sky and I realized that I was shining. Just as darkness is a choice, so is light.
-Susan Redington Bobby
Speak for Me
My parents r gone there’s no 1 to speak 4 me no 1 to tell u how great I could be. Who’ll tell my story and who will be proud just 2 show me off in front of a crowd? Who’ll speak of those cute things I used 2 do? Like when I spoke my 1st words and tied my own shoe. Who’ll speak of my accomplishments be they small or great? Who’ll tell of me dropping that good china plate? Who’ll hang childhood photos and save my diploma? My parents r gone there’s no 1 to speak 4 me no 1 to tell u how great I could be. Who’ll speak of my birth and first wobbly steps? Who’ll luv me 4ever w/out 1 regret? There’s no 1 my son that knows me so well. So I must tell u of me and my part of u. Then you’ll tell my story and u can be proud. Then maybe you’ll show me off in front of a crowd, and I’ll speak of your birth w/ that cord round your neck and how I’ll luv u 4ever w/out 1 regret. -Lisa-Joy Sanders
Walk Poem I walk back to my room from the library Take a short cut through the amphitheater And stop to watch lighting bugs Tell stories to tired ants About their ancestors in the sky I watch a small group of grasshoppers Get aggravated by two crickets That are playing an extremely loud game Of Marco Polo I glance at the moon And notice how it acts like one big nightlight It puts the hardworking ants to sleep I yawn and realize it’s way past my bedtime
-Joseph “Pablo” Perez
A writer I cannot be All my ideas have left me Emotions push my imagination Even with all I feel I can’t seem to get it out It the masterpiece from my soul the very essence of my heart It stuck within the closed abyss enclosed in my mind that wants a release just come out already the love, hate, sad, mad, excitement, torment of life, remove yourself and find a place in my journal, notebook, or scrap paper, then maybe I can reclaim the title of a person who uses a pen as a riffle and words as the ammunition
The Pain Inside
Dear Mother I just wanted to say, Thank you from the bottom of my heart, You were always there for me right from the start. Every minute of every day, You show you care in every single way.
You did what you could, It hurts; everything hurts. Not physically, With what money you had, it was the mental strain that paralyzed me. It Buy a better life you would, was never meant to turn out this way. I want to But ours was never bad. cry, but I promised myself to never cry in front I was never cold, hungry, or sad, of her. She already believes I’m weak; I will not The little things in life are what made me glad. let her see me broken. I pooled together my last reserves of strength and put on my expressionThis, and the never-ending love that you give, less mask. Why is she still yelling? Why does Means the most to me, and is how I want to live. There are not enough words to express how I feel, she look so angry? Make it go away, make it But the thanks, and love in my heart is real. all go away. She went through my things; she You are the best I could ever ask for, invaded my privacy; she is not to be trusted I love you from the moon, to the stars, and more. ever again. No one is to be trusted. I shall trust -Katherine Ashwell no one. Everything wants to shut down, to just go to sleep and pretend none of this every happened. Pretend that she never found my journal and read it. Pretend that slowly but surely my life wasn’t tearing itself apart. Pretend that she did not pull me early from school with the lame excuse of a doctor’s appointment. Pretend that I was never interrogated. It happened anyway. No matter how much I wished it did not. The overwhelming sense of helplessness and dread began to crush my spirit as time passed and she still did not give up. Question after question that had no answers. When would she stop staring? When would she stop glaring? I retreated deep within myself, tuning out all the mean words. To block out all the emotions, I began to shut down, to not exist in reality. As my thinking slowed and then washed away, she said something that I will never forget. “I am your mother. Why don’t you tell me anything?”
Fox In the wild stalking my prey, This pointed face hunts during the day. Food for the family, back to the den, Once I got eggs, they belonged to a hen. Winter is here, warmth in my tail, Thick fur, what a good ol’ pal. Amber in color, sitting in the field, Blending in with nature, my identity concealed. Some think I’m a dog, just think out of the box, I’m in your local town, I’m a fox.
- Michael McGuigan
Haiku Desolate tears roll down the anxiety filled cheeks of a Princess. *** An old friend, like time, (was never lost between us) Becomes a new friend. ***
BBQing The smell, charbroil and flames, Put on the meat, we just won some games. Beans on the stove, hickory to taste, Veggies all grilled, no need to waste. Well done inside, drink in my hand, Dig in, digest, then hit the sand.
My stripes are common, like a zebra in sight, When it’s time to eat, I go out at night. I have no fear, I’m out n about, If there’s a problem, I’ll lift my tail with no doubt. That smell, my weapon of choice, Walk away, thus I won’t have to rejoice. Some think I’m a weasel, or even Pepe’ Le Pew, I’m a skunk, who are you?
Simplicity An overlooked thorn pricks Irena’s fingertip as she reaches for a plump raspberry bursting with crimson light. She ignores the instinct to pull away, to clutch her hand, which is encouraged more by surprise rather than the slight pain. She continues to stretch for the berry. The fruit falls into her palm as soon as she touches it, as if eager to be free of the burden of carrying its own weight. Almost instantly, she lets the berry roll from her fingers into the pail between her warm, crouching legs. It lands with a satisfying clink. She brushes the black netting away from the branches to reveal five more ripe raspberries. Someone has driven pegs into the ground to keep the netting secure, protecting the plant from hungry finches and blackbirds. It does nothing to stave off curious travelers. An inauspicious snack has the misfortune of becoming trapped in one of the tetragonal holes of the netting, and in his struggle to break free has sealed a life of imprisonment. His black eyes are now gray, and his long body is picked of nutrition by scavengers. Irena wonders if the poor snake had been fortunate enough to die before the ravenous animals found him. She moves nearer to the snake for a closer examination. His small skeleton is bleached by days in torrid sunlight. His head shows the only evidence left of black scales. The more the snake had struggled to free himself, the more the netting had tightened its grip. She pushes herself up and brushes the dirt and gravel off her hands and legs. She grasps the metal handle of the bucket, raspberries scarcely filling the bottom. They thud to either side in rhythm with her steps. As Irena opens the door of her car, a cloud of heat grates her skin. She climbs into the sweltering vehicle and starts the engine. Immediately, she reaches for the air conditioning knob and twists it to full power. Small orbs of sweat start to form at the edge of her hairline. A disgruntled map, wrinkled and stained from use, is lying on the passenger seat. Expectation shoots up her spine like an electric bolt as her eyes recognize its presence. Only a few hours more and Irena will be passing the border into Canada. As she shifts the car into drive, it jolts, and the familiar hum of the engine regains a steady pulse. It is comforting in an unrecognizable place. A vacant landscape holds no memories, no meaning except realization of how many places she has not yet seen. And each new place holds a potential promise of a future memory if she stops long enough to contour it in her mind. Images blur as the car picks up speed, until shapes smear and colors fuse. This is not who I was, perhaps not who I am now. I do not take risks. I do not instinctively cash my checks, pack my bag and drive across country and into foreign regions. I told myself as I cashed my checks, whispered it in hushed breaths as I packed my bags, screamed it with delight as I drove away. Away from home, away from what I knew, away from the old.
Identity Comparing my life to a game much like telephone My identity takes on a role that is not of my own Joseph Joe Blow Pablo slowly become someone I’m not Trying to remember who I was because over time I slowly forgot Scared of the man in the mirror when I glance at my reflection Knowing if I chose to continue I’ll end up in the wrong direction Understanding that life will always be full of temptations and distractions I step into manhood and take full responsibility for all of my own actions Correcting my past and acknowledging every mistake Like a blurry dream of mist with some time I’ll awake Pablo Blow Joe Joseph this person I learn to accept Starting to move toward a brighter future with every single step
-Joseph “Pablo” Perez
It’s that time of the year, Ah…lacrosse must be near. Put on the pads, get on the field, Hard work must be put in, ‘cause victory is never sealed. Sticks are ready, helmets on tight, Fields are lined, goals in sight. Pre-season is over, the time is now, Can you feel it, hell yeah-I need a towel! The season is starting, studentathletes everywhere, I look in my teammates’ eyes, man what a stare. Here we go, zebras and balls, I hear the whistle, there goes those calls. All out, my sixty minutes is here, A goal, assist, save, don’t forget to clear! I look up at the scoreboard, zeros on the clock, Victory is ours, but not always a lock. I celebrate with my teammates, for this game we have won, Remember this moment, for our work has just begun!
and thinking about it, reminds me of the pain and I can’t help but cry you took my feelings for you and turned them against me and it left me broken and empty I remember how you used to promise we would be together now I can’t help but admit, that your lies were clever even after all you’ve said and done a part of me still wants us to move past this and carry on there was something about you, a different look in your eyes like everything I was searching for, in you I could always find but now I know the truth and that it was all untrue can’t believe I almost gave myself completely to you you hurt my heart in the worst way I should have never let myself fall for you in the first place that was my mistake and now I’m paying for it and now that the truth is out you’re begging me for a second chance but this time you won’t even get a second glance I’m actually happy now, that you wanted to go different ways ‘cause ever since then I’ve been seeing no clouds just sunny days I never knew why I kept running back and kept taking the pain, you’re just lame but now I’m starting a new life so I’m turning the page now the only thing left to say is goodbye on second thought I take that back I never should have said
Leave Him Behind
Sadness takes over, As moments of happiness Fade into nothing. Tears replace smiles As people are left alone In a lonely world. Sobs overcome laughs As jokes are turned over Into an evil threat. I was happy Just seconds ago But I left it behind. His words were calming And I felt strength But I walked away.
His eyes were kind And I felt love But I drove off. Each time I leave him I feel it all Stay with him. Each time I say goodbye My smiles turn to frowns And my laughs turn to sobs. Each time, But always I leave him behind.
People Who Live in Rain When is the day In which people will get along? Times are getting better But there’s still something wrong Children are still dying with starvation and disease Children are living on the streets and some live in the trees People who have They still need It’s kind of a shame Because some people don’t even have enough to feed Their children, their loved ones, just their family And it’s weird because those that have Don’t even show the least sympathy I know that I don’t have everything I want I know that I do have everything I need But people like me need to stop complaining Because there are people out there On the street when it’s raining With no food, no hat Hardly any clothes They are out there trying to keep warm from the cold Is it so wrong to help one another out? Just think about the children Whose lives are desperate Who have to scream and shout Because their bodies are aching because of the pain And it’s even worse when they live in the rain They depend not on their mother and father Because some parents are dead Some don’t know how this feels Because they live off of bread Is it so wrong to help one another out? Because I feel kind of guilty without a doubt I feel this way ‘cause I eat food every day I have a bed to rest my head I have a quarter to buy cold water I have a family to love and care for me I have all these things and I still complain I don’t even think about the people Who Live...In...Rain
Seven Shots Where should I start? My life has so many different parts. Where were you when I wasn’t at my best? God excluded you from my life like an obstacle or some sort of test. Birthdays, holidays were always missed. Damn, all I wanted was a hug and a kiss! Mom didn’t do this alone. So why should she have to suffer and raise two GOOD kids on her own? Tears were constantly runnin’ down my face. To not have YOU in my life was such a disgrace. How hard is it to say I LOVE YOU And promise not to lie and always stay true? I will never know what it feels like to have a father’s love. Something that’s pure and sent from above. I forgive you for what you did. You missed out on such a beautiful kid. Seven shots straight through my heart. YOU are the reason my life has so many different parts.
Name Telling (Poetry Nation) I guess you can consider my mother Maria to be the Puerto Rican Mary Even though she wasn’t a virgin It was Robert’s baby she chose to carry It wasn’t until she gave birth That Robert chose not to bother Leaving Joseph to grow up by himself And without his father She had to raise her son alone That she and Robert made Having a lot of similarities with Mary Maria was also afraid Joseph’s middle name is De Jesus And we all know Jesus means savior But he grew up in East Harlem Where he saw nothing but bad behavior Being both the father and the son He raised himself to be a better man But not having his father around Was something he couldn’t understand Regularly feeling confused He would go to sleep whenever he felt less than equal That’s when he would dream about angels Saying it was on him to better his people
-Joseph “Pablo” Perez
Panic Attack I swore I could hear the defying thud — the finality of life itself. It rang in my ears, and brought tears to my eyes. The pain from the thud was excruciating, like someone was squeezing my heart, like it was going to burst, like it was a firework. Then, I couldn’t breathe. Oxygen was not coming easy, and my vision was getting blurry. I could feel the earth moving with me, dancing under my corpse and above my grave. “Panic attack,” I thought simply as my heart started up again, racing so fast I thought it would fly right out of my chest. Only time could tell me how long it would last, but I knew… my heart was slowing at an unsteady pace, my dizziness abandoning me kindly. Clarity was coming back, too as colors seemed to separate from each other and letters formed words instead of blobs. Myles Miller Just another panic attack. It was only the fifth one today. Today started three hours ago. With a relationship only through God - Melissa Boyd
Mary Saurratt: 1865
There were half a dozen men or more who met in my boarding house from time to time in the weeks before the shooting. Sometimes they blustered as men will, sometimes they whispered when I came into the room. I did not know them well, except for my son, John, in Canada now as I wait to be hanged— the first woman, they tell me ever in this country—if Mr. Johnson doesn’t give me clemency. I had no grudge against Mr. Lincoln— I saw him, sometimes, walking and thinking, I would surmise from his furrowed brow, arms clasped behind his back. I did not wish him dead as these men seemed to. I wished no one dead. My jailers are not harsh men, merely deceived by what lawyers and newspapers say about me, but I am no Salome, nor want to be.
We were brothers Leading by example You taught me to care for others An old man before your time You had your priorities straight Who would have guessed an early death Would have been your fate We barely spoke But you always found time to pass on knowledge And was always excited to see me When I came back home from college Even though we were not blood related You gave me love that I was not afraid to embrace And I know for a fact that if more men were like you The world would truly be a better place So I sit in my room, listening to Cross Roads And hear your voice talk to me when I pray And you continue to pass on knowledge Telling me we’ll see each other again one day Because death is promised to everyone Even though we act like we have no clue But that does not change the fact that While I am alive I will always miss you.
-Joseph “Pablo” Perez Minute Man She called me a minute man And I think that it is okay Because I do it in sixty seconds Or less instead of taking all day In both indoors and outdoors I get it done with no fear Excited when people watch I do it faster when they cheer When three more people join on in That only can make it more fun Instead of being sixty seconds in less than four minutes we’ll be done Hint: This Poem is about track and field. I run the 400m sprint in less than 60 seconds.
-Joseph “Pablo” Perez
Katherine Ashwell Sophomore, Education “Dear Mother”
Melissa Boyd Freshman, Biology “He Wonders” “Leave Him Behind” “Panic Attack” Keva Brooks Sophomore, Education “Seven Shots” Jamie Brown Adjunct Professor, English “Delaware Bay, Afternoon, December 5” Danielle Dawkins Parker Library Assistant “Haiku” “Writer’s Block” Ashley Harmon Sophomore, Biology “The Pain Inside” Laura C. Jones Freshman, Education “People Who Live in Rain” H. A. Maxson Adjunct Professor, English “Mary Saurratt: 1865”
Michael McGuigan Senior, Education “Alcoholism” “BBQing” “Fox” “It’s Time” “Skunk” Myles Miller Senior, Psychology -photography
Kyle Pequeno Freshman, Psychology “Second Chance” Joseph “Pablo” Perez Sophomore, Liberal Studies “Chino” “Identity” “Minute Man” “Name Telling” “Walk Poem” Susan Redington Bobby Assistant Professor, English “Iridescence” Lisa-Joy Sanders Education and Kinesiology Administrative Assistant “Speak for Me” Alicia Seewald Senior, English “Simplicity”
Editors Doryann L. Barnhardt Victoria N. Hodgson-Faught Faculty Advisor Susan R. Bobby Photography Myles Miller Staff Collette O’Neal Alicia Seewald Evita Wade Photo by Myles Miller
Wesley College Literary Magazine