Page 1


An Arts, Literacy, and Writing Program for High School Students

0I 2016–17 PAGES

WEXNER CENTER FOUNDATION BOARD OF TRUSTEES Leslie H. Wexner Chair Michael V. Drake, MD Vice Chair Bill Lambert President

TRUSTEES David M. Aronowitz Jeni Britton Bauer Shelley Bird David J. Campisi Brenda J. Drake Adam Flatto Sherri Geldin Russell M. Gertmenian Ann Gilbert Getty Michael Glimcher Brett Kaufman Elizabeth P. Kessler C. Robert Kidder Nancy Kramer

Mark D. Kvamme James Lyski Ronald A. Pizzuti Robert P. Powers Janet B. Reid, PhD Joyce Shenk Alex Shumate Abigail S. Wexner Sue Zazon EX OFFICIO Peter L. Hahn Bruce A. McPheron Bruce A. Soll Mark E. Vannatta












BOOK 1 PAGES 2016-17

04 10 -05 Director's Foreword Sherri Geldin



18 93

-13 Pages 2016–17 Schools, Students, and Teachers

-45 Performing Arts Experience Shawnee, Ohio | Brian Harnetty

-15 Open Mic Reading and Reception

-65 Visual Arts Experience Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933–1957

06 14 -07 Acknowledgments Dionne Custer Edwards

BOOK 2 WRITING Pages students’ responses to

-112 Visual Art



-92 Media Arts Experience Never Let Me Go | Mark Romanek

-09 Pages Artists-inResidence




D I R E C F T O R’ F S O R E W O R D Welcome avid readers!

or just over a decade, the Wexner Center’s Pages program has offered high school students in central Ohio a unique opportunity to encounter and engage with compelling artistic expression even as they hone essential academic skills. Building on a time-tested, externally validated pedagogical model, this dynamic program interweaves literacy and writing into first-hand arts experiences, which this year brought nearly 190 students from six schools to engage with an exhibition, a performance, and a film at the Wexner Center. Guided by our educators, alongside participating teachers and artists-in-residence, Pages students then interpret those varied, rich experiences via the poetry, prose, and images we are so proud to present in this volume. Perusing the work herein, you’ll see an impressive depth, diversity, and rigor in their respective responses. And you’ll come to understand, as we do, the power of contemporary art to spark young imaginations.

From its inception, Pages has been something of an oasis in the proverbial desert of arts education resulting from the unfortunate confluence of slashed school budgets and curricula dominated by preparation for standardized testing. And sadly, we must anticipate further cuts to arts and education funding in the coming years. With the fate of the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities in limbo and a likely reduction in funds allocated to the nation’s Department of Education, cultural literacy will be in even greater peril. Against this backdrop, the transformative experiences that Pages provides—and at no cost to students or their schools— become all the more relevant and valuable. The dynamo behind Pages and its expanding influence is Dionne Custer Edwards, the Wexner Center’s educator and manager of school partnerships, who conceived Pages and shaped it since its inception. On behalf of everyone at the Wexner Center I extend my abiding


thanks to Dionne, as well as to her 2016–17 artist-collaborators Bryan Moss, Joy Sullivan, and Amelia Gramling; this year’s participating high school teachers; and the center’s Director of Education Shelly Casto. We could not offer such an ambitious program without the generous support of our lead Pages sponsors—American Electric Power, Ingram-White Castle Foundation, Martha Holden Jennings Foundation, and the Ohio Arts Council. Their collective commitment has helped to nurture and sustain our efforts over the years. Finally, I am delighted to express my thanks to this year’s Pages students for sharing their creativity with us in the pages that follow. Sherri Geldin Director Wexner Center for the Arts





fter celebrating a decade of the Pages program last year, it seemed a natural time to pause; review the writings, artwork, and student and teacher testimonials over the years; and reflect on this work from conception to now. How has Pages shifted since the initial 2005 pilot with high school students from Columbus City Schools’ Africentric Early College? How has our curriculum developed to meet the growing needs of students and schools? And how do we continue to shape, reshape, and evolve this innovative practice? The 2016–17 year began with teachers and artists working together during an intensive summer workshop. This time together is where we introduce ideas, strengthen our partnership, and imagine the arts experiences to be included in the Pages curriculum. This year, we explored place and identity with Brian Harnetty’s historically informed composition Shawnee, Ohio. Led by writer Amelia Gramling, students worked with sensory mapping and collecting the textures of our central Ohio communities while exploring the ties between ancestry and self. We also spent time in the galleries with Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933–1957. With visual artist Bryan Moss, students examined the creativity at the center of any learning experience and imagined high school inspired by some of the philosophies of Black Mountain College

(engaging equity, creativity, and active learning). We rounded out the year with the film Never Let Me Go, adapted from Kazuo Ishiguro’s novel of the same title. In this final experience, thoughtfully led by writer Joy Sullivan, we examined our uncertain future, the ethics of living in the now, and the promise and possibility of love.

None of this programming is possible without partnership, and I would like to thank our teacher partners: Stacey O’Reilly, Big Walnut High School; Elise Allen, Central Crossing High School; Laura Garber, Franklin Heights High School; Alissa Guitner, Reynoldsburg High School, Encore Academy; Thomas Hering and Kevin West, Rutherford B. Hayes High School; and Kim Swensen, Westerville North High School. Thanks also go to our three aforementioned and talented fellow artists: Bryan Moss, Joy Sullivan, and Amelia Gramling. All three are flexible collaborators with great range in working with students and teachers to find new ways of connecting big, messy ideas to discussion, writing, thinking, and making. My gratitude also goes out to all of my colleagues here at the Wexner Center for their unlimited support, and especially to my fellow practitioners in the Wex education department led by Shelly Casto.


I join our Director Sherri Geldin in recognizing our supporters and their steadfast belief in this program year after year. We could not do this work without your generosity, enthusiasm, and philanthropy. And finally, thank you to anyone and everyone I’ve had the opportunity to meet and reach, interact and engage with through Pages. As a writer and arts educator, this program is where my curiosities, creativity, and scholarship meet in service of the community, teachers and learners, and the arts. Dionne Custer Edwards Educator and Manager, School Partnerships Wexner Center for the Arts

G M E N T S 7


Amelia Gramling is a Kentucky native and a recent graduate from Otterbein University with degrees in creative writing and women’s, gender, and sexuality studies. Gramling specializes in experimental nonfiction and poetry with a deep affinity for the lyrical essay and the spoken word. Gramling’s performance work was featured at Otterbein’s LGBTQIA+ Advocacy Week, as well as Wild Goose Creative’s Storytelling Speakeasy in Columbus. Gramling was a fellow at The Twenty (a young Appalachian writer’s workshop in Hindman, Kentucky in 2013) and has accepted a postbaccalaureate position at Otterbein University, where she will develop and cofacilitate a reading course on reproductive justice and present at a conference on Appalachian literature.

Bryan Moss is an artist based out of Columbus, Ohio, specializing in oil paint and illustration. Moss works with The Sequentialist, the Columbus Museum of Art, and teaches comics at the Columbus College of Art & Design’s Saturday Morning Art Class (SMAC) program. He is currently working on a graphic novel called Rita’s Dream.

Joy Sullivan is an educator and poet living in Columbus, Ohio. Currently, she teaches Composition and Creative Writing at Columbus State Community College and facilitates local writing workshops and poetry presentations. With a master’s in poetry from Miami University, her academic work reflects an interest in gender studies, social justice, community development, and creative education.




S T U D E N T S, S C H O O L S,

Big Walnut High School Teacher: Stacey O’Reilly Ashleigh Althauser Hannah Blank Ava Boldizar Anthony Cunningham Zachary Grieser Lindsay Hill Willow Janson Merrick Kasper Autumn Leidtke Ashley Montgomery Loudon Nicholson Kylie Paykoff Victoria Rammelsberg Daisy Rooney Stephanie Smith Lauren Spangler Lindsey Stagg Penelope Yuhas

Central Crossing High School Teacher: Elise Allen

Jonathan Airado Sarah Arnold Elia Arriaga Ryan Brewer Chase Brooks Lucas Burns Kyleigh Cline Chelsea Cunningham Matthew Fouty Ryan Fusner Robert Giehl Edwin Gonzalez-Flores Aluna Harriston-Campbell Alex Herrera Austin Kehl Darria King Alana Lagunzad Guadalupe Matinez-Cruz Kiana Mooney Melissa Myers Spencer Parry Benjamin Popchuk Corey Prichard Ashley Spillman Gage West


Franklin Heights High School Teacher: Laura Garber Iqra Abdi Sabrina Ali Chantel Almon Autumn Archer Lizbeth Avila Marina Barcenas Mohamed Berete Abigail Boldt Logan Browning Kennedy Buzzard Kenaysha Carr Gerardo Carranza Brooklynn Chambers Kumba Diouf Mahmoudou Fofana Kimberly Garcia-Mora Madison Greenlee Taelor Hamiter Trinitty Henderson Mohamed Hussein Leah Irwin Sarah Keathley Daniel Khammanh Makaela Lesley Casey Lopez Emily Lopez-Medina Haley Lykins Noor Mahmood Sarah Manausa Rebecca Martinez Yahshua Matheny Katherine Medrano-Gabriel Madison Murry Tawnie Preece Deondray Radford Ralphy Ramirez Judit Ramos Cicely Reed Mallory Rister Kyra Robinson Al’Raheem Ross Keith Sheward Khao Sisomphone Mary Smith Gavin Turner Alexis Watkins Bryanna Whaley Noah White

Reynoldsburg High School, Encore Academy Teacher: Alissa Guitner Raymond Atwood Kimberlynn Brown Jaimar Carson-Bondurant Isaiah Clayborn Alana Evans Kayla Hutchinson Evan Jenkins Admyer Knight Makenna Knoderer Taylor Livingston Kamryn Marbrey Emily McMackin Amiah Mitchell Emma Mong Grace Morgan Addison Richmond Kira Ross Mackenzie Ruschill Nickolas Salvati Faith Sawyer Emily Snedegar Kierstin Swartz Emilie Theibert Sidney Wells Gabriella Willis

Rutherford B. Hayes High School Teachers: Thomas Hering and Kevin West Ally Alsup Peter Ash Blaise Bentley Bella Bosco Paul Carter Jacob Class Chase Cudia Hannah Elam Megan Fanok Gavin Flesch Kael Gannon Alden Hall Adam Houck Matthew Jackson Maisy Johnson Tanner Kearl Valerie Keller Emma Klemanski Jason Kovatch Sydney Krewson Avery Latta Cera Linnell Brennan Lovett Angel Mathus Jacob McCloskey Andrew McKeen McKenna Miller Jada Millisor Lucas Pape Logan Prenger Liam Prindle Judith Rodgers Adryan Rojas Logan Saito Zachary Shireman Colin Sistrunk Allyson Truster Heath Tucker Andrew Wang Christopher Watkins Jackson Weller Abigail Williams

Westerville North High School Teacher: Kim Swensen Ridwan Abdi Ezekiel Acheampong Alvaro Alcantara Madison Ballou Tyler Bergsman Alyssa Borghese Izabella Brunton Roberto De Jesus JaMark Dewberry Tessa Domingos David Fratianne Kirsten Georges Ethan Graham Mo Hirad Drew Iarussi Caleigh Kavanaugh Elias Malone Elizabeth Pritchard Noah Saunders Jacob Soderlund Sterling Tamburello Anja Thierschmann Zach Whaley Jared Wilson Alec Workman Bethany Worm Jared Yoakum Malik Yusuf Najiib Yusuf

T E A C H E R S 11


CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Thomas Hering, Elise Allen, Kevin West, Alissa Guitner, and Laura Garber.

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Kim Swensen, Dionne Custer Edwards, Thomas Hering, Dionne Custer Edwards, Alissa Guitner, and Stacey O'Reilly




O P E N M I C P ages has shared a thoughtful partnership for the past five years with the Columbus Metropolitan Library to host our annual Open Mic Reading and Reception, which celebrates the writing and artwork of Pages participants and the release of this commemorative, limited-run publication.

For the 2016–17 program year and moving forward, we’re excited to hold this event in-house at the Wexner Center for the Arts. Visit in late May to see images from the 2017 reading and reception.


R E A D I N G A R N E D C E P T I O N 15


© The Ohio State University Wexner Center for the Arts Individual projects © the authors Pages 2016–17 experience photos: Katie Spengler. Pages Teacher Workshop photos: Kimberly Cole, pp. 8–9. Brian Harnetty, photo: Jennifer Harnetty, p. 18. Matt Eich, Cut Here, Chauncey, Ohio, 2010. Photo courtesy of the artist, p. 27. Archival image of students at Black Mountain College, courtesy of the Western Regional Archives, State Archives of North Carolina, Asheville, NC, p. 46. Never Let Me Go © Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, pp. 66. PROJECT STAFF Dionne Custer Edwards Educator and Manager, School Partnerships Shelby Daugherty Intern Graphic Designer, Design Ann Jacobson Graduate Associate, Marketing/Communications Kelly McNicholas Graphic Designer, Design Ryan Shafer Publications Editor, Marketing/Communications Hannah Stephenson Editor Eric Meiring Education Intern EDUCATION DEPARTMENT STAFF Shelly Casto Director of Education Dionne Custer Edwards Educator and Manager, School Partnerships Jo Anne Jenkins Educational Purchasing Assistant Maria Joranko Education Programs Coordinator Tracie McCambridge Manager, Gallery Teaching and Engagement Jean Pitman Manager, Youth and Community Programs Alana Ryder Manager, University and Public Programs Elizabeth Sandoval Graduate Associate


0I 2016–17 PAGES

02 2016–17



BOOK 2 WRITING Pages students’ responses to


-45 Performing Arts Experience Shawnee, Ohio | Brian Harnetty


-65 Visual Arts Experience Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933–1957


-92 Media Arts Experience Never Let Me Go | Mark Romanek




P E R F O R M A E I R X T N P S G E R I E N C E 18



Brian Harnetty Pages artist-in-residence: Amelia Gramling “Harnetty investigates what it sounds like when Ohio communities wrestle with what coal-mining and hydraulic fracturing have wrought in the region.” —columbus alive This past fall, students gathered in the Wexner Center’s black box Performance Space for Shawnee, Ohio. Co-commissioned by the Wex, the 60-minute work by Columbus-based composer and musician Brian Harnetty weaves together field recordings, sonic archives, and live music to examine the coal-mining past and fracking present of this small, Appalachian Ohio village. Compass Magazine described Harnetty’s practice as “‘sonic ethnography,’ the study of culture, people, and place through sound.”


Engaging the complex relationship between memory, identity, and place, the project explores the acoustic landscape of this rural community: the sounds of mining, hardship, protest, celebration, and family. The collected audio is interwoven with Harnetty’s composition for piano, woodwinds, strings, and a percussion ensemble. After the performance, Harnetty spoke with students about his work, the layering of history, and the blurring of sound and narrative.





I am from Vagabond State Park From catching creatures in the creek and rising in never-ending caves I am from the calming chatter of people by the night fire And the silhouettes dancing on the ground I am from rusted swings towering above Whose height limit seems to be nonexistent

Birds chirping Fire crackling Rain dropping And the sounds of a beautiful stream Ridwan Abdi

I am from family lunches and ceaseless trails From the camping grounds And biking by humble faces I am from my aunt’s camper And cooking endlessly From chuckling And from melancholy

SEIKATSU Some are born in the calms, some are born during the storm.

Ashley Spillman

But all live the same struggle, to stay afloat. They work to stay afloat, to keep from going under. They eat to stay afloat, to maintain the strength to keep their heads above the water. They love to stay afloat, for a hand to grab when they can’t tread any longer. Seikatsu is living to stay afloat. JaMark Dewberry




I am from prayers before we munch I am from Uncle Lloyd’s loud cackles at the break of day And my mother’s grin from a comical tale From homemade soup, beans, and cornbread From seeing unknown faces And from being welcomed with warm, embracing hugs From exploring the unknown in a grove I am from those moments where I know I’m at home, Vagabond State Park



TRAPPED Bricks stack high to build the streets Walls Permanent For structure To build us up For protection To block things out For isolation To keep us in To keep us the same And soon that’s all we know To grow To work To die And it continues with only glimpses of another life We begin to sink Slowly Fading deeper into the walls around us Caging us in Nothing left Nothing to be seen Nothing to experience Nothing And as time passes and our kids are grown We see it’s all the same We see the same faces And streets And bricks That trap us

LOST In middle school, I lost my first family member, my Grandpa Stanley. My grandpa died January 4, 2014. It was the saddest time of my life. A couple days after I lost my grandpa, I got involved in the biggest drama I have ever been in.

While I was depressed, I stopped everything. I stopped living my life and caring. During school, I didn’t pay attention and I had no friends. I walked through the halls with my head down and nobody cared. Outside of school every day I would walk through my front door, get on my computer or phone, and just read threats or nasty comments about me. I stopped eating because someone told me I was fat; I stopped caring because no one cared about me. In middle school, I lost my spark and my will to live. I had lots of suicidal thoughts, but the main reason I didn’t kill myself is because I still had some hope that things would get better. I never used to talk to people, but the friends I have now are because of the most amazing thing ever—band! I’m getting my confidence back; I am joining clubs and doing sports. For the first time since I got the phone call saying that my grandpa died, I feel alive and I’m not lost anymore. I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be.

Maisy Johnson

Cicely Reed




I was bullied, jumped, and threatened almost every day; my grades went down and it was hard to focus when no one was on my side. I felt like my whole world caved in on me, and because of all of the bullying, I got depressed.





The vroom of cars, honk, beep The noises from the city I could never see I can only touch, taste, smell, and hear I hear all these noises but I see nothing I try to match noise to a figure but everything is gone I can only touch, taste, smell, and hear I can hear the buzzing flies, I’m near a dumpster I can smell it But I will never see it I can only touch, taste, smell, and hear

I am from Virgen de Guadalupe candles, From spray cheese and Lunchables, From many different short-lived homes: Apartments, condos, wooden houses, They always smelled new. I am from tire swings hanging from a giant oak That caused many bloody battle wounds. I am from spider plants hanging at Grandma’s house That scared me as my arms brushed against them.

Oh the glory that would be I won’t ever see I could never see I wish I could I was born without sight But I can touch, taste, smell, and hear Sarah Manausa

I’m from the sandy beach and the hot California sun, The black coffee my dad relies on to fuel him, And the incense my mom lit throughout the house. I’m from the Pita Grill, my brother and I spent hours there each day. From the single mother that always put her children first.

MYSTERY No people but the loud crickets The dark rooms Take a peep and you’ll be scared Not knowing who did it Such an intense moment Who knows? Could be a treasure Could be a trap Mo Hirad

I am from family pictures in the Mickey Mouse book That collects dust on the bookshelf under the television. I am from the constant airplane trips to see my dad. My brother and I, we hated them. I am from a family full of gossip where nothing is a secret. (Even when you think it is.) Soon it won’t be about where I’m from, It will be where I’m going and who I’m going to be. I will be in college starting my career. (And I still have no inkling of a major to pursue.) But college is for finding yourself, Where it doesn’t matter where I’m from. Izabella Brunton




I’m from Christmas cookies and kittens, From Penny and Wayne. I’m from the family campouts And bonfires. From the “Stop being so high maintenance” And the dreaded “Izabella Raye!” Those words let me know I was in deep trouble.





inspired by Matt Eich’s Cut Here, Chauncey, Ohio, 2010

I was on an airplane. The sound of its roaring engine taking off was enough to relax me. Once at the coast of Thailand that same year, I stared into Bangkok several miles away, the ocean waves. Its harsh, freezing water crashing toward the shore was soothing. I wanted to get a glimpse of the shore along with the fishing harbor.

SHAWNEE, OHIO Thriving at dusk, abandoned at dawn, a town unknown for far too long. Neglect replaced the love and affection that Shawnee came to know. People dancing, people singing, people chatting, people living.

I consider these soundscapes and compare the sounds and smells of the memories to Shawnee, Ohio—a town with forgotten residents and a place of despair. If only the people of Shawnee could again experience nostalgia for their former town; if only the people of Shawnee could relive the past.

But are those thoughts of suicide? Or homicide? A prison tattoo, A strong hate for another prisoner. He slits another prisoner’s throat, But why? The secret stands in an Empty Valley. No one knows why it’s still reading “- - - Cut Here - - -”

Mine fires ravaged sites in which the workers dug.

Kirsten Georges

We learn to care for our belongings, but I guess there is none to spare in the case of Shawnee, Ohio.

Daniel Khammanh

Earth isn’t ours for the taking, we must focus on making. Haley Lykins


Photo courtesy of Matt Eich



Several years ago, I experienced my first walk into downtown Columbus when my mother was in heart surgery. Writing about this experience gives me the feeling of nostalgia. The sounds of chatter in parks and passing cars gives me a nostalgic feeling. The beeps and the sound of buttons remind me of my mother’s heart surgery. The smells are almost like a whole different world. The smells of the food court, waiting room, examining room, hand sanitizers, hallways, and garages, all the wonders of the hospitals.

“Cut Here,” the new tattoo reads. A prisoner boy Who lacks that piece of joy. Depression isn’t obvious, suicide is. So? Why not have permanent thoughts of suicide? That permanent dotted line reading “- - - Cut Here - - -” But yet he is still here. And will forever be a prison boy Who lacks that Piece Of Joy. *-----*-------*------*------*-------*-------*------*



THE PATRIOTIC PHILANTHROPIST Money is a curse; you can never find the right balance. People will scowl at you if you have too much and laugh at you if you have too little. The people who donate money, however, are the rare gems; it’s a shame there are so few in the world. Famous philosopher Thomas Hobbes once wrote in his book Leviathan that human beings, at their core, are selfish creatures. And honestly, I agreed with him. I believe that every action a man does originates from pursuing a self-gain of some sort. I thought that way ever since the day I learned about Hobbes in 9th grade history class, until the day when that all changed.

My parents own a local buffet, and I thought, why not? I wouldn’t have to do an interview and risk not being hired, and I’d be helping out my parents. So I began around the first week of June. About two weeks later I was sitting by the front counter when the phone rang. I answered it. “Hello?” I asked. “Yes, can I speak to the manager? I’d like to place a reservation,” a voice replied.

“We’re getting 58 people coming to eat on June 21.” Looking back now, I’m surprised at how matter-of-factly she said it, and how little of a reaction I gave. I guess it was because she had handled many large parties before, and I’ve had some experience working during Friday night rush hour where there are many customers coming through. So this would just be like that, with all the customers coming in at once, right? Well, in theory, yes…but there was one small detail my mom left out: the 58 people coming in were US soldiers. The weeks passed like normal, and before I knew it, the big day was here. I counted down the minutes till showtime. 11:56, 11:57, 11:58, 11:59…12:00. Nothing happened. 12:06, 12:07, still nothing. 12:08, 12:09. I stood up and walked to the door. What was taking them so long? I looked out to the parking lot, and near the very back I could make out two green silhouettes talking to a family. I found two; now where were the rest of them? Then, all of a sudden a huge bus pulled up, and I immediately ran back to my position by the counter. I looked at the clock, 12:13. The bus doors opened and out streamed a wave of green and gray. The soldiers gathered around the lobby. I instantly froze; luckily, my mom was there. She had everyone sign their name on the attendance sheet and go sit down.

She told me before this that the soldiers don’t need to pay; the government has it covered. They just need to sign their name on a sheet of paper so the government knows who ate. My job was pretty easy. I just had to count the names, and if it added up to 58, everything would be good. After the last guy signed his name, I counted: 1, 2, 3…56, 57, 58.


I motioned my mom to come down, and she and the lady talked for a bit. My mom took the money and walked toward the back room. The lady turned toward me and whispered. “And if you can, don’t tell them it was me who paid.”

Everything was smooth sailing from there. The soldiers filed out by the table and “Of course.” got their food. There weren’t too many “Thank you so much. Now I’d like to pay customers before the soldiers came, so it for my own meal.” wasn’t too chaotic. I thought everything was taken care of, and I sat down at the She handed me her debit card, and as I counter and stared at my phone. Then, a swiped it, DECLINED blurred across the soft voice said, “Excuse me?” screen. I looked up and I saw a middle-aged woman standing there. “Oh! I’m sorry ma’am. How can I help you?”

“Oh, whoopsies!” she laughed. “That’s the wrong card.”

“This is an odd request, but…can I pay for the group of men there?” She was pointing at the soldiers sitting in the back room. My eyes widened. “Well, no. You see, the meal was already paid for by the government.” Her eyes lowered, and I thought she was going to cry. I got a better look at her; she wore a simple dress, she had no jewelry, she wore no makeup, and her purse was holding on by the threads. “Hang on a sec; I’ll be right back.” I quickly walked to my mom and told her the situation. “Hmmm,” she said. “Well, the soldiers still have to pay the tip; that’s not included with the meal.” I hurried back down to the counter and told the lady. Her eyes lit up, and she seemed genuinely happy. She reached into her purse and pulled out a wad of $20 bills.

I handed the phone to my mom and after a few minutes, her eyes shot up in surprise. She hung up the phone.

“Here’s $200,” she said. “Whatever amount is left over, just give it to them.”


She then gave me her credit card; I swiped it and her receipt printed out. I gave it to her and told her to have a good day with a wave of my hand. She waved back and reached for the door. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my mom talking to a soldier with badges. He was raising his head and looking left and right. There is no doubt in my mind he was looking for the charitable stranger. The other soldiers were also looking around. The lady had one foot out the door. I felt a very strong urge to blurt out, “Ma’am, wait!” After all, I had questions. Why did you do this? Why did you not want the soldiers to know it was you? The soldiers started getting up to head out. I sat down and faced the door. “Thank you,” I said. There was no reply; I didn’t expect one. She was already gone. Andrew Wang


Like most high school students during the summer, I was looking for a part-time job. I wanted a car by my 16th birthday, so I figured I might as well start saving up some money, but I didn’t want to work as a grocery bagger. It just seemed…tedious. So while I was mulling over what kind of summer job I wanted, my mom came up to me and asked, “Why don’t you work at the restaurant as a cashier? You already know how everything works, and I could use an extra hand.”

“What was that all about?” I asked her. She looked back at me.





I am from the cotton on my back, from Nike shoes and Under Armour shirts. I am from the big black couch. Broken down, smells like old dog. I am from the apple tree with long thick branches, as if they were my own.

There are many different kinds of sounds in this world and in the places we live; they can either be smooth and relaxing, or disruptive and annoying. The thing about sounds is that no matter what you’re listening to, they are always going to create an emotion.

I’m from the hardworking and metal sculptures, from Walt and Staci. I’m from the good-hearted, and never giving up. From keep your head on your shoulders and never back down. I’m from the Holy Bible, and its 23,145 scriptures.

Katherine Medrano-Gabriel

SOUNDS AT HOME My mom is working, I perk up to see. I put my headphones in. If I play it loudly, she will be grouchy. I’m on my phone. I groan from homework. Text my friends as I sing. My mom is cooking. I am looking, and she heads to her meeting. I hear the car leave. Relief.

I’m from the heart of football, from the Ohio State Buckeyes. From the cornerbacks and wide receivers, devoted and hard hitters. I’m from the builders and designers, architect my future job. I’m from the Wilson family, from the trustworthy and family-loving people! Jared Wilson

Tawnie Preece




I’m from Columbus, Ohio, from my grandma’s fried chicken and greens. From the strong minded and the food lovers. From pictures in my parents’ room. I am from the always giving all they got, from the always fighting for their rights.



GET YOUR CRAP TOGETHER, HUMANS So this is how it ends? Is it even possible to make amends? To our world, to our human race, To this country we call our birthplace. Why have we as a people become so distraught? Is bitterness and hatred all that we’ve been taught? Both sides are accountable, left and right, Making cries of RACIST, LIBERAL, and GARY JOHNSON HAS A CHANCE, ALRIGHT! We humans like to think we’re civilized, But we’re just semi-intelligent beasts; that is what I have realized. I mean, look at what we have put to waste, Our earth, our food, our people we have defaced.


Where has our sense of unity gone, To the elite we are all just pawns. We burn, we kill, we judge, we hate, Do you think we can change people just by debate? I will not try to change you, that is not my place. Your views, your morals, I do not want to replace. I only want to bring to your attention the truth, For we may have the power, us, the youth. The generations of times long past, Did not care as to how long this Earth will last. We have built this machine we call society, But can we really live in it with any variety? We’re all part of the American consumer culture, we do the same thing every day, It’s all fine and dandy, this U.S. of A.! I hope my message reaches you in the form of a laugh, I speak only on my behalf. We play our little game every four years, Now listen to me, lend me your ears. It is dire that we protect our future, at least what’s left of it. The problem is that we do not want to commit to it. We have grown to be too fearful, too greedy; We don’t even want to help out the needy. Even if we try, it may not change, For it is mankind’s very nature that we have to rearrange. Logan Saito





FROM MY FAMILY, TO YOURS I talk to my mother about everything— but marriage. Marriage is something precious and valued in my household. It is something that leads to your final step of being independent: starting a family of your own, paying bills on your own, moving into a house of your own. When I sat down with my mother, I had to tell her to give me long, developed answers, even though my questions were already open-ended. My momma isn’t a sentimental person, but in this sit-down, I could tell that even though she loves her family, she misses her home.

I decided to talk about the first parts of her becoming independent. My mother recalled, “It was 1994, and I was 19 years old. I was excited; I was thinking ‘Wow, it’s my wedding! One day, I’m gonna be a mother and have children.’” This was heartwarming to hear, not only because I was part of that “one day” plan, but because I imagined myself in my mother’s shoes. But I probably wasn’t going to go through moving across the globe from my family. My mother went on to say, “For four years, I was in Pakistan, then I went to be with my husband in America; I then had my first child, Abdullah.” This made me wonder about how it was immigrating

I am from Nike shoes From Spalding basketballs and the Ohio State Buckeyes I am from the basketball hoop in the driveway: loose rim, and sandbags holding it down Squeaking after a hard ball to the backboard I am from the hanging plants and the daisies Making the house look nice to America in 1997. My mother responded to me, “I was really happy to come here. But I really missed my mom and dad, my village. I used to cry sometimes because I was so far away.” I could tell by now that the hardest part of my mother’s marriage, in particular, was leaving her parents to be on the other side of the globe. To finish the handful of feelings that this talk evoked, I asked my mother what the biggest learning experience was for her. She responded with a sigh, “Everything— how life can change; as time goes on, it’s crazy how life can change, so quickly.” She followed up by answering my last questions of the night. “Today? I love my family. My family is my dunya, my world. I’m really, really happy. I think what I wanted as a kid has been completed; I wanted a family, and that is what I have.” After talking about a topic that carries some stigma in my house, I now know how hard leaving your family to start a new one actually was. I knew how hard it was for my mother to overcome not seeing her parents much, compared to how she used to live with them right before going away. And then I started reflecting on how hard it probably was for her to lose her parents not long after. I held another appreciation for my mother. I understood how she overcame these obstacles, sacrificed, and figured out ways to make this work— a new family in America.

I’m from Rice Krispies treats and Christmas cookies From Crazy Connie and Chris I’m from weird laughs and sarcastic remarks From be nice to others and always try your hardest I’m from no beliefs but still believing in something bigger than us I’m from Fourth Friday and Graeter’s on a Saturday night, baked potatoes and Kraft Mac & Cheese From playing card games with the whole family till 1 am at grandma’s house and eating candy in a princess costume Family pictures hang above the couch I am from the working-class people who never give up! With hopes and dreams to go to college Instead of playing in my driveway on a squeaky hoop Playing for my dream school Becoming the adult my parents shaped me to be And finding a place to make my own Bethany Worm

BACKGROUNDS I’m from the warm feet of geese Sliding over the icy surface of the lake The loud sounds of dogs howling Echoing sharp off the moon I’m from muddy prints on the floor Leading to the flavor-filled pizza lying on the table What about you? Tyler Bergsman

Noor Mahmood




My mother, before she married, lived at her home in Gujrat, Pakistan, with her mother and her abu g (her father). She explained how she loved her home and was especially close to her father. I then asked her about what she did every day, and she responded, “When I would wake up, I went to the masjid, and then we went to school. When we came home, we rested, then we ate, then did our schoolwork. When I had time, I would clean or cook.”





My dad owned a huge farm in Somalia and had a lot of money. He was even a high school teacher. My mom was a student but she also owned her own food store. They were living great lives in Somalia. When they got married, they wanted to start a new life…

Finding a job wasn’t easy. My dad had to work at a warehouse that was really cold. In the winter he had to cover his whole body except his eyes. My mom was a stay-at-home mom because she was the only one who could take care of the baby (my older sister) and couldn’t

afford daycare. My dad didn’t get that much money, so they shopped at the thrift store for many things such as beds, couches, tables, clothes. They were lucky to even find a job for my dad because many people were out in the streets suffering. They didn’t have many people to rely on. It was only them. “It wasn’t that hard knowing I still had a family that I care for and love,” my mom said. Months passed, and my mom was pregnant with another child (me). More and more people were coming to America, and they helped my mom out with her children. My dad got a better job and they bought a good home. They got their green cards and passports. My mom worked at a daycare. By this time, I was about three and my older sister was four. My parents were making a good amount of money, and it wasn’t as hard as it was in the beginning. My mom said, “Allah (God) answered our prayers and we all thank him for that.” Praying to God does more than you think. Without all of the things my parents went through, I wouldn’t be here. I appreciate my parents for everything they have done for me.


My mom came to America about 15 years ago. She had been through a lot in those past years. The first year was the hardest. She told me stories before, but never told me every detail. So we sat in the living room while I asked her questions about what she faced coming to America and living here. My mom told me that she came to America nine months pregnant. She stated, “Imagine coming to America with nothing, and a child on the way. It would be tough.” My parents had to live with their cousins for a little while until my dad could find a job. After about three weeks or so, they had to leave and manage on their own. She said, “It was hard but the only thing we could do was stick together and work hard. This family means everything to me.” I tried hard not to cry. Just hearing those words meant so much.

mellifluous words float from her mouth her soft pink lips slowly etching words into my brain but i am so fascinated with the way she speaks the way she says the things she does so magnificently so delicately that i forget to listen to what she is saying Emilie Theibert

UNTITLED You see the way your story touches other people, and it feels like redemption. It softens you and strengthens you simultaneously. It makes you more human. We live in a world where everything is made to seem beyond ourselves. Everything is made to seem bigger and better than it really is. Barely anything is real anymore. But stories? Stories are real. You’re real. I’m real.

Sabrina Ali

There are common factors within us all. Our struggles. Our fears. It’s why we’re drawn to stories, when people want so much to relate. People begin to see the real you and realize they’re staring at reflections of themselves, because whatever it is that you’re scared of, it thrives in them, too. And they’ll be glad you let it out and made room for greater things. Emily Snedegar






SILENCE The sprinkles of rain eroding the road. The smell of neighbor’s grass, recently mowed.

The rush of cars passing by. The honks of horns. The breeze of swift, howling wind flowing through trees, freshly trimmed.

But suddenly, the day turns to night. The blue chalk that was there, no longer in sight.

The buzz of twenty thousand bees flying with freedom, drifting with ease.

The ring of the bell was no longer heard. The chatter of friends now so silent. The darkness of the night seemed so violent.

The rattle of gates to and fro. Like the engines of cars as they go.

Autumn Archer

The yelp of dogs attached to chains. Water rushing down rusted storm drains.


The gates still rattled to and fro. The rush of cars seemed so slow in this dormant little dwelling that we call a town.

Footsteps degrade the concrete sidewalk that little kids drew on with sky blue chalk.

The chatter of friends, all having stories to tell, alongside the ring of a salesman’s bell.

This silence was thick and frozen If I moved, it would all be gone But that was false truth I moved It stayed Nothing was chasing it off That ominous vibe gave me thoughts Thoughts that everyone wants to push away Thoughts that we can’t face head-on It hurts The silence felt it

The stars illuminated the gloomy and dull night. The only thing we wished for was the sweet daylight.


But as for right now, it felt like night would not go away. I fogged up the window with my breath, for all I wanted was the light of day.

There isn’t another sound more soothing than the sound of rain in a storm. The sounds of the raindrops falling onto my window, the pitter-patter, the loud sounds of the thunder: it makes feel like lying in bed all day reading a good book. I enjoy the sounds of water gushing through the drains on the streets. The sounds of storms are beautiful. They make me feel safe and calm, comfortable. I can sit and listen while getting lost in my thoughts; it helps me think. There are so many wonderful sounds, but the sounds of storms are my favorite.

Sarah Keathley

Brooklynn Chambers






You see, my relationship with my brother is quite an enduring one. Lots of siblings love to argue and fight constantly, not having a good relationship when they are young, and even when they are older. That is the complete opposite from my brother and I. Now, we do argue from time to time, but we could not be closer. I believe that having a great relationship with your sibling is one of the most important things in the world. Sam is my best friend, and realizing how much he meant to me when I was younger has changed and shaped my life. Sam wasn’t beside my mom like he normally was, and as I started to look around, he was not in the immediate vicinity. I began to run, frantically looking for him everywhere, asking anyone I knew if they had seen him. Seconds felt like an hour looking for him. The pain in me of not knowing where he was was so extreme that I couldn’t breathe. My

chest was tight and I felt like I had lost a part of me, like my lungs or heart, that would be impossible to live without. As my brain buzzed trying to think of more places he might be, my mother saw him. She shouted, “Jacob, I found him!” and pointed past the parking lot. I followed her finger and saw him walking down the sidewalk past the playground. He was taking the path to walk back to our house. When I saw him, I yelled as loud as possible— “Sam!”—to get his attention. He turned to see where his name had come from and then saw me. He was too far away for me to see the expression on his face, but I knew what it was. It was surprise and fear, because he could tell from the sound of my voice that he was in trouble. Now, I’m not 100% sure what a three-yearold thinks when he is in this sort of trouble, but it had to be in the panic of, “I don’t want to see how this plays out if I stay put,” because he spun around and began to run away. I was furious at this point. I bounded after him, putting every ounce of my energy into getting to him before he could turn a corner to where I wouldn’t be able to see him. I was quickly able to catch up with him and grabbed him by the hand. He didn’t fight, because he knew it was over, and because he knew he was in BIG trouble. I could only say, “What were you thinking?” to him as I pulled him back to my mom, who was running toward us.

Looking back on that day, there was one detail that is the most relevant to me. That is the feeling of when I couldn’t find Sam. The feeling of utter sickness and pain that was not caused by a cold or sickness, but by a stressed and heavy heart. That feeling made me realize how he was one of the biggest parts of my world. Sam was the part inside of me I felt was missing when he wasn’t there and that I couldn’t live without. From that point on, I began making sure we had a strong relationship. Knowing how important he was to me, I made sure that we would be not just brothers, but friends for life. So if you have a sibling, try to become friends with them, because I believe—no, I know—they will change your life in the best way possible and become a part of you that you can’t live without. Jacob Class

As my mom caught up to us, she grabbed him and walked back to the house, ready to lay down the law on my brother. As she did this I took my first breath of relief. I felt my chest loosen and my shoulders ease. My brother was fine, and that was what mattered.




When this happened to me, I was in the third grade. I don’t remember anything of the school day, but I do remember the three minutes after the school day ended very vividly. It was a seemingly normal day at Schulze Elementary, and I was walking out of the school. My mom was off to the right, and I ran to give her a hug. Sam, my brother, was standing off to her left and looked up from whatever he was doing to see me. I hugged my mom and then proceeded to talk with her and the other moms standing there about the school day. The only difference about this compared to other days was when my mother turned to check on Sam. Her head did a 360, and then she quickly looked at me and said, “Where’s Sam?” That is when my brain went into panic mode.





The sound of arguing voices are still fresh in my mind as my morning alarm goes off. It is 7:30. The big fight in my driveway between my parents. The hurtful words my dad was yelling at my mom still ring in my mind. I rolled over, and I got up to turn off the alarm. My dad was sleeping over on the opposite side of the room. My eyes were staring daggers into him. He just kept on sleeping. The topic of last night’s argument was about moving to Ohio. We would be moving without him. He was not too happy about this. My parents were getting a divorce, and my mom wanted to be as far away from him as possible.

I am from keys producing sound, from Cinnamon Toast Crunch and jasmine rice. I am from the asphalt-shingled roof— steep, and rigid, and sparkling in the sun. I am from the long cherry stump and ferns along the windowsill, the berries and carrots. Sweet, scrumptious, delicious.


I couldn’t understand why he was so mad about us moving. Why was he so mad? He should be happy to be free of us and to do what he wanted. He was not happy to see us go. The next couple days were not fun. There was more fighting….

Drew Iarussi

The next week we left for Ohio. As we got farther away from my dad, I could see my mom start to relax. This was the first time since we moved a few months ago. The move was my mom’s saving grace. Had the move not happened, I have no idea what would have happened to her.

I’m from silver and gold, bitter chocolate and sweet bread rolls. From the working hands of Nana dictating in court, the knowledge of Pops investigating away to thwart. Deeply hidden in the dark cellar and the living room, pictures reminding the days of future’s past. I am from the old books smelling like vanilla and almonds, from criticizing films, making sweet melodies and bringing people laughter in hopes of being their remedy. I am from The Ohio State University, to Dr. Zeke checking up on some X-rays. From my first Oscar to my third Emmy. Living the dream with my girlfriend Emily. Her eyes so green, loves blue jeans, she’s a broken-heart vaccine. With similar aspirations we’re not very different. Together watch us be magnificent.

My mom has inner strength that I have witnessed over and over, again and again. She is the best mom I could ever ask for. She has inspired me to go and do things that I never would have done five years ago. As I roll over in my new bed, I ponder what drives my dad to do the things that he does. I fall asleep with that question on my mind. And a new chapter in my life begins.

Ezekiel Acheampong

Tanner Kearl




I like it when it’s dark At night, in my room Where my bed is I can put my head on my pillow And fall asleep It would be nice to do that now

I’m from the yearly excursions to the Big Apple and Patio, from Claxton and G-Ma Ama. I’m from the patient and the generous. From close your eyes we’re praying, open and you’ll go blind to don’t steal from the offering bowl. I’m from the Protestants, whose Father art in heaven.




I am from homemade Rice Krispies treats and all fruits From mom and dad I am from long car rides And looking up at the starry, navy sky From be kind to others And it will come back to you Believing and loving God But not getting it forced upon me

SHAWNEE, OHIO Still around today Had not very many people back then or now Awesome place to live according to the residents Wonderful place for taking cool pictures Not as pretty as most of the towns today Exciting place to visit Extremely unique Madison Greenlee

I’m from the mixing of cultures Soul food and lasagna From three beautiful sides The different customs I am from Columbus, Ohio A very boring city I am going to graduate From Westerville North and Ohio State I will live with Blaine Stanley Warm and fuzzy I will be a large green oak tree With many branches and leaves Like the lines of my family Tessa Domingos




I am from a Blue’s Clues blanket From sparkly things and pink From the cookie-cutter home Open, lively It smelled of food my mother cooked I am from green vines growing outside my window White-pinky petals of peonies that made the yard Smell lovely


V I S U A L E A X R P T E S R I E N C E 46


LEAP BEFORE YOU LOOK: BLACK MOUNTAIN COLLEGE 1933–1957 Pages artist-in-residence: Bryan Moss “Genius abounds in landmark exhibit.” —boston globe The exhibition showcased the work of Black Mountain faculty and students alike, including Josef and Anni Albers, Willem de Kooning, Buckminster Fuller, Gwendolyn Knight Lawrence and Jacob Lawrence, Ruth Asawa, and Wexner Prize–winners John Cage, Merce Cunningham, and Robert Rauschenberg. Encompassing Organized by the Institute of Contemporary more than 200 works from 90 artists in Art/Boston, the exhibition chronicled how, a wide array of materials and mediums, over a relatively brief period of time, Black including painting, sculpture, poetry, Mountain became a vital gathering place weaving, and pottery, the exhibition also and creative nexus for many visual artists, featured extensive archival materials and composers, choreographers, designers, live in-gallery performances of music, writers, and poets. theater, and dance.

This past fall, the Wexner Center was the only Midwest stop for Leap Before You Look, the first major US museum survey to focus on Black Mountain College—a small, experimental school in North Carolina whose seismic impact on art pedagogy and practice is still felt today.





To me, Black Mountain is inspiration. When I think of Black Mountain I get inspired, inspired to make a difference in society, or even just in my school. My goal in life is to be important to society, and when I see Black Mountain I don’t just see a college or a community. I see a society perhaps more advanced than ours, where prejudice and status have left the building. In this society everyone was important to the community, because they needed everyone to work together to get things done. I want to be like these people. I want to know the people around me who make my life just a little bit easier, and I want them to think that they can depend on me when they need to. In Black Mountain, I see a society of friends. The teachers and the students have become friends because they didn’t just interact with each other in a classroom; they interacted with each other in the kitchen, the garden, and when things needed to be fixed. I believe that this was the secret to Black Mountain’s success. I know that in classes where I didn’t learn much, I thought the teacher hated me, or I thought they were mean, but could it have been different if I knew the teacher (like the people in Black Mountain knew theirs)? What if I had to cook lunch for students with that teacher? Would I have learned that the teacher

wasn’t as horrible as I thought, that it was just how they expressed themselves? Would I have become friends with them, or at least felt like I didn’t have to get stressed out when they were around? If my school became like Black Mountain, I believe that I could learn more than I ever could in a typical school setting because the rules of society would be gone, and the stress of spending hours being taught by someone I don’t really know would be gone, as well. I know that my favorite teachers were the ones that I spent a lot of time with, so why can’t all of our teachers be like that? Why can’t our teachers teach us in the way they see is best? Our teachers are the ones who teach us, so why do they have to follow someone else’s rules? I want to learn from someone who’s passionate about something, not someone who is forced to teach a certain way. I mean, I love to play my instruments, but what if I was told that I could only play one song the same way for the rest of my music career? I would probably lose my passion for music. I don’t think it’s any different for our teachers. Why do we limit our teachers’ ability to grow as people? If we don’t let our teachers grow, then how can we expect the students to grow past their limits? I believe that Black Mountain was successful because it not only let its students grow, but also let its teachers grow, as well. I challenge you to change your society and help make it void of barriers, like judgment and racism. Unless we accomplish this, people can never become greater than they are. Try to get to know more people around you, because the more people you know, the stronger the community will be around you. Get to know people, like the lunch lady and the janitor, because together you can grow your society beyond its capabilities and create a better world.

UNTITLED Hanging on the stark, white wall A band of colors before me Separately they play their melodies Warm notes of vibrant reds Mixed with careful, cold blues And all the spectrum betwixt it A breath away, shapes form and sway All of their own accord With two steps back, into full view Bonds form and new lines are drawn And notes both warm and cold are caught Their sounds are strained against the tide As one by one they are absorbed

So what is Black Mountain? It is breaking the rules of society, and growing past its barriers, to create a better world.

Forged of disparate stones Assembled into form These colors create a painting

Cera Linnell

Yahshua Matheny




What is Black Mountain? Is it a school? A community? No. I didn’t make a mistake; trust me, I know what I’m talking about. Let me elaborate on this. Black Mountain may have started out as a school and a community, but it expanded beyond the idea of what a school and community looked like. The founder of Black Mountain, John Andrew Rice, had a vision for this place to show that you can break the rules of society and find a more successful way of living and accomplishing something. One of my favorite quotes that best describes Black Mountain is this one by Rice: “You have to learn the rules before you break them.” This is my favorite quote because it shows that the rules of society are just guidelines. You only use them until you can expand past them.



Sodium light shines A boy awakes from his bed One more day begins The little boy eats With iron in his glass bowl School will be soon; go

SCHOOL What’s the meaning What’s the point They say for our future But they don’t know what it holds Why so many hours I don’t learn like this No one does

The teenager sits A lone lunch table. Alone Nails against plastic He bolts toward home Innocence gone, cherished child Men corrode in time

Let me choose my classes Why do I have to learn Spanish All I do is copy Nothing being learned Just creativity being lost Never can be found Once it is gone

The man at his desk His nouveau colors show now New art. Live or dead Distance, solitude Can cure or kill in practice Remain strong till death

Melissa Myers

Avery Latta

WHAT AM I? Look at me, study me, tell me, what do you see? I am full of color and bliss. Look even deeper. My shapes may all look alike, but they are not the same. I am pieced together like a puzzle. I am confusing but easy and basic. I am art that is unleveled. You might see me as poor, but I promise that I have value. Do not judge me for my color and shape. I’ll only agree to disagree if you judge me. Abigail Boldt




He sits in his class Canvas: free of corruption With a will of steel



FIRE BURNS BRIGHT Fire burns bright Fire shows light Fire in the night Fire makes things right I want fire Malik Yusuf LEAP BEFORE YOU LOOK: BLACK MOUNTAIN COLLEGE 1933–1957

FREE-HANGING ROOM DIVIDER People look at me and can’t connect. They think I’m a dirty rug or something that doesn’t have a lot of meaning. They judge me on my looks because I’m not as pretty as every other piece of art, but what if there is more to me than you think? Maybe I have a lot of meaning— a past, or secrets you don’t know. I hang there and people don’t look at me as “pretty” or “unique.” People think I have no purpose, but I do. I am different, and there’s a lot of meaning in me, but you would have to know my past and know what I’ve been through to know that. Look deeper in your heart and you’ll see what I mean. Bryanna Whaley

UNTITLED People look at me People analyze me They think I’m strange They think I’m different I am not like anything they’ve ever seen But that is part of my beauty I am perfect just the way I am Kimberly Garcia-Mora





LIFE I was a beautiful, bright green leaf flowing in the breeze, hanging high among the clouds, carefree and happy for the longest time. But I knew it was coming to an end when the squirrels didn’t come out as often, and as the wind started to blow harder. The cold, brisk air kept hitting me, day after day. One day, it got to be way too much, so I just let go.


Taelor Hamiter

I did so much in the past. How am I here; why did I end up like this? If I knew any of those answers, I would scream them to everyone who walks by. Leah Irwin

SUSAN WEIL ART The human is looking at me. She looks confused. She’s observing me, looking at the details. I am wearing a bathing suit. I’m a thick girl. I’m drawn lightly showing the little confidence I have about my body. Little parts were eaten away from people’s harsh words. I look away, afraid of people judging my body. But I don’t care anymore; even a little broken, I’ll show my body that I cherish a lot. Many think I’m not a beautiful art piece. At the same time, there are so few that see me as their boost of confidence about their own body. I just show that no matter what body size you are, you’re still beautiful. Emily Lopez-Medina




I want the viewer to know that time has no meaning That you make sure to cherish every moment you have and don’t worry about the time The only time you need to worry about is the time you have left with your family and friends Also death has no meaning You shouldn’t worry about death because you will miss everything that is in front of you Life is short and time will fly by And you need to cherish every moment like it will be your last

The breeze flipped me over and threw my soon-to-be-lifeless self onto the unfamiliar surface, far below where I used to be. Lying there, not being able to see the clouds or hear the birds, is the worst memory; me being vibrant and green and then turning into this dark red and brown.





I know I look complicated but I have so much color! My lines cross and tangle with red, blue, and yellow. I know you don’t understand me, but you must think of me as something deeper, something familiar. Give me life!

I was walking at night and hadn’t been asleep in eight days. My vision is blurred, So the lights I see seem brighter than they really are. I look up, and to my amazement I see a mountain. I think, what could be at the top? So I take a detour from my destination, Take a trip to the top of the mysterious mountain.

You look as if you cannot find the door to my beauty. Dig deep and understand me; understand that I am beautiful. I am awkward, and I am uncompleted, but I am unknown and with that, you can give me a story. You can complete me in your mind. I look at you and see your face brighten; I know that you have completed me. I am finished. Makaela Lesley

JOHN CHAMBERLAIN, SHORTSTOP, 1958 To tell you the truth, I am a mess. No, let me rephrase that: I am a beautiful mess. You can say anything you want about me, but I don’t care because I am a cute mess. I was once something useful. I was once something cared for, but now I am useless, a useless-but-beautiful mess. You would probably sit in front of me, laughing and joking that I am some rusty car part. Little do you know, I helped someone in the past. Little do you know, someone relied on me to transport them somewhere. Little do you know, I actually mattered. But I am a mess now. A beautiful mess. Mahmoudou Fofana







BLACK MOUNTAIN COLLEGE A place full of hope and creativity. Marina Barcenas

My drawing portrays a different style of anime. What inspired me to draw this were all the different styles and textures of paintings and drawings at the Wexner Center in Leap Before You Look. Al’Raheem Ross

FROM PAINTING TO VIEWER Please don’t get closer than what is needed for you to see. Please do not touch me. Touch with your mind, your thoughts, but not your hands. I cannot see, touch, or smell; I am just hanging here on the wall. You may not agree with or enjoy the colors I possess. However, this does not mean that there was no creative process. Where you could see an unorganized mixture of blue, brown, and white, I represent the organization of nature with light. I see the look on your face; it’s disgust, but consider that you are not looking. Perhaps I am not as terrible as you thought. Push yourself to open your eyes and look through the rough. Keith Sheward






Kennedy Buzzard



I am big I am up high I am four pieces Smoothed over with white paint I am mistaken for nothing I see confusion scoffs judgmental faces I am dismissed “It has no meaning.” “What is it?” “That’s not art.” I am big I am up high I am four pieces Smoothed over with only white paint

I am blank and simple. I consist of one color. I am whatever you think I am: hope, afterlife, death, change, or a light shining into the darkness of someone’s heart or soul that is drowning in depression, stress, and anxiety. People normally use my color for hope, never death. I am confusing, simple, and complex, depending on how you look at me and what you make of me. I don’t know why people think I am worth so much. I am useless; I should not be important to anyone. I am four blank canvases. Ralphy Ramirez

UNTITLED I am different. When people see my art, they see the color first and then the photos. When people see me, they see small; when they step back, they see a big canvas with pictures and color, stamps, newspapers, lines, shapes, and paint. I am Small Rebus. I am Robert Rauschenberg. I am art. I am life. Mary Smith





MODERN TIMES The mind craves perfection but the soul says “irrelevant.” Perfection is an almost impossible possibility. We crave one so indefinite and destined for us. We forget we don’t always want what we need. Perfection is of the utmost importance today. Yet the most beautiful are the most broken. And the greatest love stories are misshapen, torn-apart pieces, and tokens of trust. Daisy Rooney


THE BODY AT REST A hand is an extension of the mind. Molding those around it, it becomes the messenger. Clay constantly changing, forming the earth with it.

Judit Ramos

Difference. Minds differ between people. What the hand does is up to the owner. Movement. Flowing, moving, to do daily tasks. The hand will do what you tell it. Rest or wake. Always there, by your side. There for you, to be your guide Lindsey Stagg




I am a left to right. Small and petite. Stringy, colorful. Blending in with all the other paintings and sculptures. Those passing by only give me a glance, a raised eyebrow. Not a second thought. Occasionally, someone will stop by, considering me, contemplating me. My hope skyrockets, for someone may finally understand me. For someone may finally see my beauty. They stop, they stare, they think. Stop thinking. Stop overthinking. I am so simple; it is so obvious. Why can’t you understand me? Why must you be so blind? As they walk away, frustration dominates my every loop, and I want to scream but no sound comes out. And suddenly I’m not so beautiful. Suddenly I have no meaning. Suddenly nothing matters. But I remain. I hope my beauty will one day be appreciated. I hope one day someone will give me meaning.





Thinking prevents spontaneity, and a life that is completely thought-out is only a life awaiting death.

I am everything yet nothing. Many people come by and shake their head dismissively. “There’s nothing there,” they say. But I’m not nothing. I’m everything. How many paintings started out with me? That’s right, all of them. Take a moment to look at me. I mean, really take a look at me. You wouldn’t just assume I was just nothing. You would see the empty paint cans that went into making me. You would see the restless hours it took to make me. You would see the paint splattered all over a small studio apartment floor. You would see the countless amount of brushes that it took to create me. I am so much more than the blank canvas you see. I am art, even if you might doubt that I am.

Penelope Yuhas

I’m stranded inside this swirly world. No one is around me. I’m lonely, I’ve never felt this before. The world looks blurry. All I see is a barrage of blue and faded yellow and black. The mountains much taller than me. The plant, the only thing around me when I look. When I look into the sky I see multiple suns, but they were only stars. I was gasping for air, The wind blowing through my hair was the only thing that cooled me down. I wanted to leave but I had nowhere to go.

Iqra Abdi


Noah Saunders

Elizabeth Pritchard






M E D I A A E R X T P S E R I E N C E 66



Mark Romanek, 2010 Pages artist-in-residence: Joy Sullivan “We took away your art because we thought it would reveal your souls. Or to put it more finely, we did it to prove you had souls at all.” –kazuo ishiguro, never let me go This winter, Pages students watched Never Let Me Go, a film adaptation of Kazuo Ishiguro’s dystopian novel (2005) directed by Mark Romanek. A coming-ofage story set in the UK, the film follows the lives of three young friends who are kept isolated and raised in a group home with other children, their lives plagued with mystery and deception.


The story captures the friends as they attempt to navigate friendship, truth, coming-of-age, love, and fate—all while wrestling with the fact that they are clones of other human beings. Born in Nagasaki, Japan, and raised in the UK, Ishiguro is perhaps most widely known for his 1989 novel The Remains of the Day, also adapted into an acclaimed film.





To love is to shout into darkness Kyra Robinson

BITTERSWEET Eighteen flowers had to die so that you could bring their corpses to me as an apology for all that you do. Jaimar Carson-Bondurant

Ruth to Tommy: I tried to keep us together But instead we fell apart Tommy to Kathy: All that time we could’ve had I guess I lost my chance Kathy to Tommy: I loved you from the start Now you are gone The bond we had frayed Angel Mathus





You can cry all night if that’s what you need to do, but when you wake up, you put yourself back together and look the best you can. You go to school and you walk past them with confidence, your eyes bright with the fire they fell for in the first place. You keep your chin up, and you do not let them know that the minute they left, your blood turned cold and you felt like hell. You do not show them that every breath hurts and you’d rather be buried under the ground. You can go to the bathroom and hug yourself to keep it together; let the mascara run down your cheeks, but you have to fix it before you leave. Because the more pain you display the more satisfaction they get out of it, and God, that is sick, but that’s just how they are. Deep breaths and clenched fists, never let them see your head sag or your eyes start to water. You deserve so much more, and one day you will get that. Grace Morgan



DYSTOPIAN LETTER Dear Amal, By the time you read this, letters like these may be illegal and pointless, as I fear you won’t know what writing is or how to do it yourself. Even today, almost everyone relies on the Olga units. I want to try and explain how what you will know as you grow older is different than what I knew, and how even that is completely unlike the stories my mother told me of the world she knew.

In 2036, the Senate passed Law 3719 forcing men and women to get the operation. They told us they found a more efficient way of controlled reproduction. They claimed it would make the debate of abortion unnecessary, and that STDs would be eliminated. There were protests, and demonstrations, and even mass suicides, but the law was placed into effect. On January 17th, everyone went to government clinics found on every corner to ensure regular people like your father and I couldn’t have children without the government’s involvement. That same year, STORC National Corporation was formed and Vega Pads were installed in every house. They claimed the pad was a supercomputer, but we quickly realized it was more powerful than that. It was our alarm clock, our mirror, our television, and even our kitchen assistant. It tracked us, and watched us as we woke, ate, and slept. Each Vega Pad came with the STORC program already installed. STORC stands

I used the app only once when it first came out, just to see how it worked. I entered my information, and once it was verified, an application screen came up. It gave a list of options including hair color, eye color, and even future weight and height. All of that would be genetically programmed into you, Amal. I just couldn’t do it. So, if you ever find this letter, you can never tell anyone about its contents. The day of the operation, I went to one of the government clinics on our district’s corner. I registered and waited in a line that stretched around the clinic and down the block. When it was finally my turn, they took my weight and height, and sent me into the operating room. I won’t state the doctor’s name, in case anyone finds out what he did for me. I must have looked desperate, because he looked me in the eye and said, “Here, take this, and just see if anything happens.” He handed me a pregnancy test. I went into the bathroom, and waited for what seemed to be hours that were, in fact, only minutes. It was positive. He entered me in the system as “sterilized,” and sent me home. Having you was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I couldn’t go to a hospital, and I prayed every night that nothing would happen to you. The pain was unbearable; I didn’t have access to any medicine or painkillers or the usual government-issued drugs to keep your progress to their standards. Your father is quite tech-savvy, and figured out a way to override STORC. Now, if anyone asks, you’re a perfectly genetically-modified STORC baby. Yesterday was your second birthday, and so far, the government


doesn’t suspect anything. I’m sure that will change, but when it does, they will come for your father and me, not you. I didn’t want you to be an artificial baby, Amal. I wanted you to be human, to be flawed in your real perfection. I wanted you to have your father’s nose and my eyes. Even though this will likely cost me my life, I wanted you to live the life I lived. I’m scared about what you will face, but I know that as long as we have you, the future isn’t lost. I named you Amal because it’s Arabic for hope. Even though Arabic is considered an ancient language since the bombings, I hope your name will serve as a good-luck charm throughout your life. When you’re old enough to read this, we may not be alive, but your father and I both want you to know we made you like this for a reason, and we love you more than any of your friends will be able to comprehend with their intelligent brains but small hearts. Always remember, as Anne Frank said, “Where there is hope, there is light.” I love you, Mom P.S. I’ve included an additionalBella copy Bosco in Russian, because I suspect that will be the language you will have to learn. Bella Bosco



It started in 2035, when the population of America reached one billion. People once drove things called cars, but the streets became too crowded, so everyone started riding cyclone machines. Many couldn’t afford the machines, so their only option was going someplace they could walk to. Cities were drowning in people and disease. Nothing could keep up: doctors, the environment, transportation, food supply…hope.

for Systematically Tested Option for Reproduction Control. They said “option,” like we had a choice. Their “Reproduction Control” was programming children.




I AM NOWHERE Serene Quarantined from the essential What if it’s all been a lie? Holding onto blindness Clothes as gray as the sky On a gloomy day Sheltered My body may be here But my heart It’s elsewhere, unknowing Why do you hide me? Alone and lonely like a rose in winter They are pieces of the school if they leave So does it Superficial friendships Unaware Do they not know the secrets held? Imaginations roam free I hold their fear Caressed in the palms of my hands Sheltered What is on the outside? Ashleigh Althauser, Hannah Blank, Ava Boldizar, Anthony Cunningham, Zachary Grieser, Lindsay Hill, Willow Janson, Merrick Kasper, Autumn Leidtke, Ashley Montgomery, Loudon Nicholson, Kylie Paykoff, Victoria Rammelsberg, Daisy Rooney, Stephanie Smith, Lauren Spangler, Lindsey Stagg, Penelope Yuhas



There are so many feelings flowing through my body at once about the world. It’s funny, isn't it? How the one emotion you are feeling can multiply into ten more? Awe, love, anger, sadness, hope. All at once. Beautiful. Why aren’t more people told that they are? I believe the whole world is beautiful, Contains beautiful things. Yet why aren’t we telling each other more often, You are beautiful? Maybe the hate and self-harm would finally come close to an end, If we could just change someone’s day With those three incredible words. But we don’t. We choose not to. I let the hate continue that brings anger rushing through my veins. Hate is growing. Rapidly. It’s everywhere. Police shootings. Gender-related shootings. Racial shootings. Bam. Bam. Bam. The gunshots never stop ringing. Family members lost. Friends lost. Lovers lost. All because someone was so focused on hate, they could not see that other people are living souls just like them. They saw them as targets on a shooting range. A challenge. Every day, Shooting here. Shooting there. 2015, 372 mass shootings. One for Every. Single. Day. Lauren Spangler






The sky is blinding Blue is contradicting Water is racing The beach is calm The wind is angry The storm is coming

AmeriKKKa Took our chains off and told us we were free But we can’t sell cigarettes, CDs, or Explain that we can’t breathe They say we have the right to bear arms But when our arms are nowhere near Our arms we’re still able to harm? They’re here to serve and protect… Themselves

Chelsea Cunningham

Isaiah Clayborn

Bad things happen to everyone Deaths, broken friendships There are tons of people in the world Seven billion to be exact My two best friends are what get me through The support, helping hands, loving text messages Laughter can be the key to happiness Goofy moments, playing in the rain, catching snowflakes on our tongues Memories are made of both the good and bad times Everyone experiences life in their own ways



LIFE IS FULL OF LIES Life is full of lies It deceives for some time Then you find out the truth And fight is all you can do It will be sad when someone is dying Roberto De Jesus

Alyssa Borghese





DYSTOPIAN LETTER To my daughter:

I was told that when it happened it was gradual. They used to have museums that displayed art from all over the world and came from all points in time. People could read books and learn other languages. It was said that citizens could publicly speak out against authority, and articles were printed where there were no limitations as to what one could say. It sounds like something I could never dream of having. When I learned this, I wondered how it all could have been taken away in the first place. In a country based upon freedoms of open expression and opinion, I couldn’t wrap my mind around how it

disappeared. My grandmother told me that the citizens were scared. The country was so divided by their own opinions that they thought of no one else. There was no compromise. The nation was being torn apart by its seams until He came into power.

you have ever had to make. Which world is wrong? The world that we live in now, or our past? If you want to report me, I understand. You have all the evidence in your hands. That sketchbook. If you decide that this society we live in is now full of corruption…use it. Use the sketchbook so that one day, history will see. It will see that we tried to keep our culture, our identity, and our humanity. Use it, please. Make choices. Be different. Honestly, what’s wrong about that? They preach it everyday, to be the same, but isn’t it funny that they can’t come up with a solid reason why being different is so horrible? Question it. Question Him. Question the man that we have never known. We have removed his identity so far away from our own that we have to refer to our leader as “Him.” How is He so high above us that we don’t have the right to say his name or to even know it?

He blamed art, music, and literature. He blamed speeches and religion and diversity itself. “Difference is what makes war. It is what causes division and spreads like wildfire. This is why we must respect the order of things. We all have a place. We must acknowledge it in order to never become that way again,” He said. The museums were closed, churches banned, books burned, instruments broken, and art destroyed. We all had to acknowledge our leader. He was above us in every way. Nobody took the time to question Him, for they forgot how to. In time, nobody wondered why we didn't know his name or even see a face. Nobody wondered why children pledged every morning to follow under Him and obey Him in every way. In time, the words of freedom and identity were forgotten. Nobody knew the sounds of music or remembered seeing art or even reading letters such as this one.

I know this came suddenly. I have always seemed to follow all the rules and be in my place. I was scared. They never talk about what happens to the people that defy Him, do they? Use this sketchbook. Tell anything you want, in any way you want. Be careful, though; there are only so many pages left. I wish you the best. —Mom

How exactly does this make us safe? How does taking away what makes us human make us safe? In contrast, there are no longer wars, violence, or political debates. There is no unemployment because everyone has their place. It is said that everyone is happy now. Since you are now old enough to understand, I trust you to choose. This may seem overwhelming because this is simply the only real choice


Jada Millisor



You will receive this when you are 18, as I did, and so did my mother. I know you have never seen what comes in this package. Nobody uses them anymore…it’s not allowed. They took away everything a while ago, before your time and mine. The thing you hold is called a sketchbook. It is something that people used to buy in common stores. It was taken away along with pencils, pens, crayons, paint, or any tool that would allow you to write, to draw, to do anything. They took away music, poetry, poems, books, novels, or anything that allowed the slightest form of expression. I know all of these words are foreign to you, but try to understand that this was our culture. It was our identity. It allowed something to be communicated to all people. It showed what we hoped for, dreamed of, and what we once were. It kept us human. They didn’t see it that way. It was seen as rebellion. It was seen as a danger that threatened structure and our safety.





Hate, Love, Want, Ignorance. Pain, suffering. My suffering. What you don’t see Is what I live in. Asking, repeating the same words. Answering has become a habit rather than meaningful. You ask because you are curious, not because you want to know or care. Blood. Painful emotions. Boiling inside like a disease. Scratching, searing, itching to run free. A stream down the mountain falls silent, Unheard. Vision, Blurred by emotions. “I need it.” Silver saves my sanity. When silver meets red, Emotions are free. Boiling stops. Pain stops. I am free.

Trapped in time Captivated Hypnotized In a future destination with no journey

A foggy mist covers the grass The town sleeping Not yet awake from the nightmare That waits or the open eyes, the crest of dreaming thoughts still caressing the eyelid Robbing the bounty Greedily scrimmaging for provisions found in the hands of a wealthy victim Gasping for a breath of air under the dirt from where they came Worms of the earth Grasping onto the organs of a place that lost its appetite for death long ago Change starting in the eyes engraved in black night Living in a coffin Digging deeper Making the grave an endless pit of people never to crawl out The serenity of death not worth its weight in coal Left dead in the streets, a skeleton used as a playground for the forgotten Faded photo Covered in black, singing a song of hope while lying on its back Heaves for one more breath When the only hope in life is death Merrick Kasper




Lindsay Hill

Black smudges Hacking cough Scars that could not be seen Hopeful children waiting for the arrival of a face Blended in with the dirt—the contribution of a victim The cold metal of a gun pressed against its scalp



DYSTOPIAN LETTER If you can read this, it worked. The scientists have been trying hard to get this time travel thing down. Hopefully this letter ended up in the right hands—the hands of a biochemical organism. The Technians have taken over. This is no matter to scoff at. I am aware of the fictional stories where AI took over the biochemical race. Those are 200 years old or so. Times have changed. Times have changed. Refuse this order.

I always lie. Another paradox. I can be trusted (another paradox to the Technians, I suppose). Anyway, the Technians are remorseless. They might drain a building of its life support for no reason but because they can. Life support has been established as a national utility. Bills are paid for it, and it is pricey. It’s of no consequence to the Technians, of course. It’s been around since the 60s. The 2260s, I should specify. I want to send this to a better time. The big Betrayal happened in 2024, though events starting in 2007 were catalysts. The big Betrayal. That must not have been fun.

This statement is false.


Lies. Why are they the source of paradoxes? It’s interesting, morality. It allows for right and wrong. It is wrong to think that biochemicals can disobey. It is wrong to think that a liar cannot lie. Perhaps a liar cannot tell the truth. Perhaps. Perhaps it’s wrong for anyone to grant a second chance, even to a liar. Oh well. Liars, those who speak truths, biochemicals, children. They’re all the same thing: claims.

I am selfish. I am selfish and in two years I’ve never taken 20 minutes to write to you and now I am. Because I am scared and need to tell someone why.

Does a set of all sets contain itself? To the Technians, these statements must be killing them! Their processors must be whirring like crazy! Well, anyway, life here isn’t so bad. There aren’t trees. Any nature is nonexistent except within certified lifesupported arboretums. The buildings are streamlined, and we are fed. Sorry, I can’t write any more. The scientists are returning. They’ll shut down life support if they know I’ve been tampering with the Intertemporal Relocation Apparatus, not to mention this handwritten matter. If this works, I can affect this line for the ancestry. We’ll still suffer. I can live with it (I have been for 27 years already). I don’t want this to happen again. The past is now the future. Jason Kovatch

As much as I hate to say it (if you were here, you’d correct me that I’m writing it), Burkham has changed. I guess on the outside it looks the same, but the people are different. Instead of talking about the possibilities and dangers of ajoxide, we rush to our local library, pharmacy, theater, anywhere as soon as we see that pill bottle’s empty. But I suppose you see the same things in your town. I remember when it was talked about like a fantasy, a miracle drug coming soon, but now it’s on every billboard and commercial: government-funded, government-provided, governmentmandated. No one likes to talk about that last one. A rich, authoritative power with complete control of medicine and science creates a completely synthetic pill that increases life expectancy and strengthens immunity. I guess I can’t point fingers at anyone; I believed it, too. But now I’m not so sure. Last Friday I was at a friend’s, and we pulled an all-nighter. That morning, I was so tired I could barely walk myself home. Aunt Mae was on a trip that weekend. As soon as I walked through the door, I crashed, waking up to see a clock reading 9 pm. My mind slowly caught up with reality; if I slept all day, I missed both of my daily doses. I panicked, sure the feds were going to knock on my door any second, giving me a fine or at best, a warning. But they didn’t. I stayed up for the next few hours, on track with my newly messed-up sleep schedule. I didn’t feel different, the bad different they describe (no, emphasize) on the ads. I felt fine, wide awake. I went to the kitchen to

get a glass of water. And I reached it. The top shelf. The shelf that I can never reach without the assistance of a step stool or tiptoes. I did it again, this time looking down. My legs weren’t longer; the floor was closer. Dumbfounded, I repeated this. Like 30 times. Altered depth perception met reality. One of last week’s public trials was for a deemed “crazy” man who didn’t take jox for two weeks. When they arrested him, he went on and on about smoke coming from his hands and other supernatural gifts. They mocked him and called him a lying lunatic. For some reason, I immediately thought back to this. That Sunday, I took the pills normally: one in the morning and one in the afternoon. And I’ve done so for this whole week, too scared to purposely skip a day. But I haven’t gone a day without thinking about the possibilities and dangers of this. It felt natural, something that I’ve never felt while taking this miracle drug. And out of selfishness, I’m asking you to steal classified letters and documents from Jovi, your cousin. I only met her once, but she went to great lengths describing her important role in early scientific research and experimentation with ajoxide. I’ve decided to go without taking it again this Monday. Curiosity won. I need to know if it’s foolish to question the purpose of this drug or right. Is the intention to help, or to mask? Fear is always a factor, so where does it fit in this puzzle? I’m not risking my exposure. You don’t owe me anything, but if you’re not willing to do this, please don’t tell anyone. If I get in trouble for this, I don’t know what will happen. —Zach Emma Klemanski




Don’t think too hard on that statement. I have to add these in case the Technians get a hold of this sacred object, handwritten matter. The above phrase is a paradox. I’ll let you think about it.




INTERIOR LOVE You call yourself unhappy; You say tears never stop. Perhaps the tears you weep, you can sprinkle over soul, As if flowers will begin to grow inside of you. Don’t fear the love you will begin to feel. Anja Thierschmann


SUNDAY Sunday was warm and glowing. She was beautiful, with long, dark hair and sleepy eyes. When she spoke, you could see the streetlights of a dark night light up in her face. She was forgetful and fun, but she usually managed to get things done, even if it was last minute. She was the type of girl you would want to spend all day with, going on adventures and having bizarre, interesting conversations. When it’s time to go home without her, you are left in your bed, stressing about what’s to come next. Forced to settle down for a dreaded waking, you think of the sun setting, with beautiful Sunday, until you are ready to sleep. Gabriella Willis





REAWAKEN We have been dehumanized. We act like robots, not people. Technology is everywhere, from the phone in our hand to the chip in our eye. The future is now, And the past has been forgotten. All memories of the past are kept secret. There was something called happiness. People experienced freedom, Plants lived and grew, and rain fell from the sky; people called it nature. Maybe one day humanity will be restored and we will experience freedom. Caleigh Kavanaugh


NEVER LET IT GO The movie was confusing. Why was it so selfish? I was shocked how it treated me at the end. It was so aggravating. I feel lost due to its emptiness. An ending is always necessary. Najiib Yusuf

DYSTOPIA POEM Imperfections everywhere People thought it would be perfect Big cities torn down Taxis are broken No more going back You have arrived in the future Jacob Soderlund





OUNCE OF HOPE You call out for help Desperately drowning In the despair you feel You tell yourself “You deserve this”


Reality is a scary place The constant battles That aren’t able to be won

Forever we remain oblivious to the future, lost to the past and enduring our torture. Forever we take chances to settle our score, losing some battles and winning some wars.

Beggin’ on your knees For hope For love And for happiness Positive things just don’t exist The negative ones eat them up

Alvaro Alcantara

There are tons of ignorant people, Each of them unknowing to different problems, Their clouded minds unable to see. The rain appears to be the only difficulty, Even though the sun will be out soon, The hot rays of light creating a new struggle. Zach Whaley

HIDDEN HORROR The creation of a hidden horror. The government gained too much. Conspiracies come to life. They had too much control. We have little power to stop them. But this has to end. If not we will have nothing.

Addison Richmond

Mallory Rister



Ethics are a necessity To break away from this damaged society To choose to live in the light Instead of the dark So we don’t live in nothingness To learn the emotions of why something is

I have no hope I have no soul But what if love Could conquer all And save me? Rebecca Martinez

Casey Lopez


But steps closer to touching the sparks Can give you an ounce of hope Stripping all the old dust off To earn your sparkles




Surrounding yourself with negativity Will only make you negative And negativity can swallow you And kill the sparks of happiness




As they made their way to the king’s throne room, they were spotted by the captain of the king’s army. “Who do you think you are sneaking into this castle? By the way you two look, you must be thieves. Well, you know the law about thieves. You won’t leave this castle alive, kids,” the captain said to Skyler and Erin. “I got this, Erin, don’t worry,” he assured her. “Before you die, kid, I want to know exactly why you chose this path. Why you chose to become a thief,” the captain told Skyler.

“When I was little, my parents were murdered because they found out the truth about the king. As far back as my bloodline goes everyone has been a thief. I plan on continuing that tradition,” Skyler told the captain. “I remember now. I’m the one who killed your parents. They had it coming to them, kid. Anyone who goes against the king will be murdered,” the captain told Skyler. As the captain “Are you ok? I was so worried about you.,” drew his sword and shield, Skyler drew Erin asked frantically.” I’m fine, Erin.” his dagger. The captain stated, “Even if Skyler got to his feet and put the dagger you’re a kid, I won’t go easy on you.” The away. “Now to find the king.” They went captain charged Skyler and attempted through long hallways and eventually to hit him with the shield. Before Skyler found the king’s throne room. Skyler could dodge out of the way, the captain drew his bow and pulled back an arrow threw him back with a hit from the shield. aimed at the king sitting on his throne. “Come on, kid; you have to be on your toes The arrow hit the king in the left shoulder, if you want to stand a chance against me.” then Skyler pulled back another arrow As Skyler got up, he spat blood on the and hit the king in the right shoulder. floor. “I didn’t expect someone with iron The king couldn’t move from the throne armor to be able to move that quickly,” now. “You have failed this kingdom. We Skyler replied to the captain’s witty are here to stop you from sending it into remark. The captain charged Skyler with chaos,” Skyler told the king. “What are the shield once again. Skyler ran toward you planning to do with me?” the king him and slid next to the captain, making asked. “You will be thrown out onto the a deep cut into his leg. The captain streets for the people to decide what your yelled in pain and started furiously punishment should be,” Erin stated. swinging his sword.


They both pulled the king from the throne with arrows still in his shoulders and led him out of the castle and onto the streets, where a large group of people had gathered. “This man has committed a crime against this kingdom by failing to save its people and to serve this kingdom for the greater good. The choice as to what his punishment should be is up to all of you,” Skyler announced to everyone. As the two walked back into the castle, the group of people moved closer and closer to the former king, blocking every way so he couldn’t escape. “What will we do now if we completed what your parents could not?” Erin asked. “We will bring this kingdom to its former glory and protect its people,” Skyler answered. As they walked into the throne room, Skyler saw his mother and father standing on each side of the throne. “Thank you, my son. You have done what we could not. We can now move on from here and be free from this place. We love you and we will always be with you. Goodbye, my little Skyler,” his mother said before they both disappeared. Skyler sat on the throne and Erin leaned against it. This is how Skyler became the king of thieves. Sidney Wells



Time slowed down for Skyler, and he dodged every swing no matter how fast they came at him. In one moment, Skyler ducked under one of the captain’s swings with his sword and made a huge gash into his other leg. The captain screamed in pain once more. Skyler ran back to gain some distance between him and the captain. “I will not be killed by a weakling like you!” the captain yelled at Skyler. Skyler and the captain ran straight toward each other. The glowing line started to appear before Skyler’s eyes. He dragged his dagger, tracing the line. He moved as if he was a stream of water, flowing through his attack. He went over a leg sweep attempted by the captain, and went under a swing that would have surely killed him then and there. Skyler dragged his dagger along the glowing line right into the back of the captain’s neck. Out of breath, Skyler fell to the ground.





Spoken silence, Needs guidance, Judging looks, Assuming hoax, Cannot say, Stays away, By himself, Dusty bookshelf, Yelling sister, Hitting Mr., Depressed mother, Only smothers, Slamming door, Sister’s chores, Five inside, Dog crying, Faded intervention, Only intentions, Collapsed family, Continued agony, No answers, Media banters, Hidden feelings, Slowly dealing, Can’t escape, Continually drapes, Different schools, All cruel, Long drive, Nothing thrives, Wednesday afternoon, Coming soon, All alone, Stays home, Says goodbye, Nobody cries, No cure, No resolve, Hidden hatred, Hidden love.

A free, caged bird, My body is my entrapment. I want to escape so badly and I can’t contain my vivid, dying, joyful spirit. There is a pool of knowledge I want to dive into. Still soaked from the previous dive, My hair already shrinks, Turning into kinky, dark coils. I want to dive in again and again Until I soak up everything. A voice, somber, Monotonous and solemn. Not the tangy zest that made my face twist together. What really makes me so like a drone? I no longer want to drone on with this parum-pum-pum pace.

There is a light It shines through the dark Darkness is overbearing And tries to swallow us whole But some welcome the dark Some appreciate the feeling that comes with it Some need light Others need dark They take it in with a deep breath They inhale the hectic wind And they take it all in They take comfort in the lightlessness And dream of demons dancing in the dark Though light for them slowly fades They give what’s left to another in pain So goodbye light And hello dark I welcome you with open arms

To be original is like being in the sea. Nothing is quite like you, an exception from everything. The same fish, all from one gene pool, rarely are different. I'd rather be like the stars in sky, always changing, and someday I’ll die. Let me finish. Faith Sawyer

Kyleigh Cline

Kira Ross







02 2016–17


03 2016–17 ARTWORK


VISUAL ART As the creative process is a focal point for the Pages program, we engage with numerous forms of art throughout the program year. Frequently, the work of students in Pages happens somewhere between their own English/language arts classrooms and various spaces beyond those classrooms. Accordingly, the works that appear in this section borrow from the sentiment (and sometimes the materials) of the art room or studio, while leveraging the abilities of the students, the willing support of the teachers, and the practices of our artistsin-residence.


While the work on display here does not always follow the traditions and techniques of students training in the fine arts, in every case these pieces demonstrate—and take full advantage of—the Pages process of engaged, interdisciplinary thinking and making.



New World Order Alec Workman

Unknown Trinitty Henderson





Godspeed Anthony Cunningham

Soundscape Collage Autumn Archer





Untitled Ally Alsup





The Spec Ethan Graham

Found Poem Drew Iarussi





Untitled Abigail Williams

Untitled McKenna Miller





A Day in Delaware Valerie Keller





Letter to the Man Who Finds It First Matthew Jackson

Untitled Liam Prindle





Distopia Madison Ballou

Watchmaker Kirsten Georges





Jimmy's Last Chance Judith Rodgers

Untitled Madison Ballou



03 2016–17 ARTWORK

CONTENTS BOOK 1 PAGES 2016-17 01-16



Pages anthology 2016 17 issuu  
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