April 30, 2015

Beating Hearts

Today is the last day of April, the end of my poem a day. I missed a couple, and a few times I shared poems that weren't mine, but I did it, anyway. A poem a day for the month of... April. Hm, how come they didn't make May poetry month?

Anyway, I got a little bit of sun today, and celebrated the end of Journalism and Creative Writing by walking down to Starbucks with my writer friend and window shopping in expensive clothes stores. It's so nice to have a break, and I think my friend knew I needed one after a rough morning.

I woke up to a lot of sudden huge thoughts that I hadn't really confronted yet, and spent the half hour of "getting ready" time trying to write my thoughts into words. I was a minute late to my final Journalism class in which we discussed big issues in the world and "how to solve them," but I needed to take the time to write this morning. Sometimes it's like my thoughts don't really exist until I put them onto paper. Or at least onto a computer screen in most cases.

This poem is actually a second (or third? Maybe fourth?) draft of a poem that I wrote yesterday after checking out our school's Creative Media Major final projects and then laying in the grass soaking up as much sunshine as I could. Here it is: the last poem of April. 

Beating Hearts

Beauty is the beating of my heart,
the flutter of butterfly-wing air
as I breathe in
and breathe out
and close my eyes to feel the white film
dance across the skin of my face
as I imagine the sky
and feel the grass tickle the back of my neck.

All around me students curl their old projects
into folders and boxes
and I remember the creative media displayed
and the themes that sung throughout.
In these projects,
beauty is self-loathing,
fear of failure-
and none of us want to admit
that we are facing darkness,

yet from that darkness we make art

and the art
we can share.

But Beauty is far from self
because self is broken and beat
and beauty is me
in Him. 

Beauty is the beating of my heart
as it beats His praise.
Beauty is the song on my lips
that I sometimes cannot sing.
Beauty is the light of His sun
warming the insides
of my self.

April 28, 2015

The Mountain- Elizabeth Bishop

So for whatever reason I just spent half an hour planning out a bucket list. Unfortunately I only have nine things on my list so far. See, when there's something I want to do I find a way to do it as soon as possible. And I don't want to have a bucket list full of impossible things that I don't actually plan on doing. But, I do have a sort of beginning list now, so maybe it'll be a good reminder of things I should do?

While browsing Pinterest for Bucket List ideas, however, I was surprised at how many of the things I had already done. I don't mean to sound like I'm bragging. I've just had such an incredible, blessed life. I ought to make a list of Bucket List Worthy Things I've Already Gotten to Do

Anyway, poems aren't working out so well today. That poetry muse seems to have abandoned me, and the novel muse hasn't come back. I feel abandoned by my words.

So here is a poem by someone who is not me:
 The Mountain by Elizabeth Bishop

At evening, something behind me.
I start for a second, I blench,
or staggeringly halt and burn.
I do not know my age.

In the morning it is different.
An open book confronts me,
too close to read in comfort.
Tell me how old I am.

And then the valleys stuff
inpenetrable mists
like cotton in my ears.
I do not know my age.

I do not mean to complain.
They say it is my fault.
Nobody tells me anything.
Tell me how old I am.

The deepest demarcation
can slowly spread and sink
like any blurred tattoo.
I do not know my age.

Shadows fall down; lights climb.
Clambering lights, oh children!
you never stay long enough.
Tell me how old I am.

Stone wings have sifted here
with feathers hardening feathers.
The claws are lost somewhere.
I do not know my age.

I am growing deaf. Bird-calls
dribble and the waterfalls
go unwiped. What is my age?
Tell me how old I am.

Let the moon go hang,
the stars go fly their kites.
I want to know my age.
Tell me how old I am.

April 27, 2015

Ungraciously- Matsuo Basho

I bragged about getting to go somewhere after church and garden and eat a non-cafeteria meal with a real family. Today allergies are making me question that choice. I really hate cats.

I finished my first final period and we stumbled through what felt like a painful presentation, but hey, maybe I learned something from having to share my final grade with a group. I still would rather work alone, hands down, no questions asked, but I guess I survived the group projects anyway.

After that and work and some more packing I tried to study for my Japanese final tomorrow. I'm pretty sure the study sheet really does just have mistakes in four of the questions. I know that isn't one of the sentence structures we learned about. I sat on the floor for a while sniffling and blowing my already Rudolf-status nose and trying to make everything make sense, but eventually gave up and started watching a documentary about Studio Ghibli in Japanese with English subtitles, so that it would count as studying...

Now it's only 9:30, but I'm thinking of taking a benedril and letting my body fall asleep. I did get miserably sick last finals week, so maybe it would be good to be extra precautious and make sure this allergy doesn't turn into anything else. Of course, to do that I have to reopen that suitcase I packed and zipped earlier today because brilliant me packed away the benedril. I thought I had done such a good job of making sure I had all the meds I would need in a different container. I guess I was just planning on stealing my sister's.

Anyway, before I sleep here's a blog post, and a poem not written by me because today I am sick and tired and have a complete lack of energy and inspiration. So here's a poem from a real poet:


Ungraciously, under
a great soldier's empty helmet,
a cricket sings

April 26, 2015

Fragil Stems

Today after church a family invited me over for lunch and I got to sit outside because the weather is back up to fifty. I helped the woman work in the garden and I made faces at the cats who wanted to play with me even though I kept explaining to them that I am allergic and can't pet their soft-looking fur.

I've never really experienced spring, and I'd say that if this lack of sun and miserable half-hearted rain is Spring I could certainly do without it.  Still, watching those little plants try to poke through the surface was beautiful and exciting. There's something so freeing about working so close to the dirt.

Today was a really good day, refreshing, peaceful. I got to get off campus and forget about packing and schoolwork and finals and everything else in my life. It's been hard watching the people around me get so stressed. So many of my friends are facing huge choices and asking me for advice I can't give, and others just seem to be in various stages of falling apart. I think that's one thing I've learned from this first year of college. We're all falling apart, it's just a matter of how much and how noticeable.

Thank goodness for that One who can glue us back together, or just work on us through winter to make us completely new again come Spring. I just have to take a deep breath and believe that I can be some kind of beautiful flower.

Fragile Stems

We are fragile stems-
leftover from winter-

trying to grow. 

The wind blows,
rain forces us to bend,
the whole world
wants us to

One broken blade of grass
can't help another stand,
and yet I curve
toward you,
desperate to help
I can only watch you break.

We teeter here
in the blowing wind,
the lingering mud,
that we too
can be made new. 

April 25, 2015

Doesn't Work

And I missed a third day...
I was so excited to write something and I just don't know what happened. I think sometimes life is just too hard. Blog posts get moved out of priority positions.

Yesterday was my last day of normal classes. I made it through this semester somehow. After class and work I went to our school's "Spring Meltdown" festival, even though I still have yet to see the sun other than those two beautiful days way back where. The festival was held in the gym instead of the lawn outside because it was too cold.

I got cool fake tattoos but everyone knows me too well and I couldn't trick anyone into believing they were real. I also went to the Christian Club's end of the year party and ate spaghetti and talked to people while the majority of the group challenged each other over Smash.

Today has been Skype calls and failed attempts at packing while keeping my sanity intact.

My brain
even work.
Pieces all over.
try to hold

everything is chaos
and the clothes
on the floor
just don't fit.

I'm leaving again.
Don't even count the times
and my life is
all over.
doesn't even work. 

April 23, 2015

Weasels and Bagels

I didn't post a poem yesterday! Oh no! I am a terrible person. What can I say, pre-finals week, end of my first year of college, no sun, and beginning of packing. There's a lot going on. I did, however, start to write a poem today and I guess something distracted me and I didn't finish so here's what I started writing. I know it's no good, but like I said, pre-finals week. 

Today I'll dive straight into a poem.

I am amazed at how the world can fall
at how my heart so quickly finds a wall
and all the peace I felt is washed away
I try to take life day by day by day

Now it's midnight and I should really be sleeping because I like sleep and it's very important to me and I stayed up past midnight last night too. But here's a poem:

There once lived a little lease weasel
who lived in a little brown box.
The weasel enjoyed eating bagel
and loved to curl up inside socks.

One day as the weasel was eating
he realized he needed some jam.
The taste of a bagel is fleeting
but lasts so much shorter than ham.

So weasel went out for adventure
to find some good jam for his bread.
He found a strawberry picture
and jumped till the roof hit his head.

The weasel danced up to his human
and pointed to strawberry jam
to make his bagel less bland
and therefore his day much more glam.

This is dedicated to my boyfriend and my failed communication at the end of our Skype date today. Still, even if it's just weasels and bagels, I'm so thankful for this guy who can make me smile so much even after such a long day.

I also got to Skype a great friend from Colorado and talk for an hour and a half, which was awesome and so refreshing to talk to her again. All this technology is a beautiful thing.

April 21, 2015

Lesson 1- Julie Alger

So I wrote a couple of poems to God this morning, but unfortunately have nothing to share with the blogging world tonight.

It gets worse, too. I don't even have anything to say about my day. I went to class and work and class and it drizzled every time I stepped outside and I never saw the sun. We got to make Matcha, Japanese powdered green tea, in Japanese class today, but that was the most extraordinary thing that happened.

It seems like a good day to share this poem called Lesson 1 by Julie Alger:

Lesson 1

At least I've learned this much:
Life doesn't have to be
all poetry and roses. Life
can be bus rides, gritty sidewalks,
electric bills, dishwashing,
chapped lips, dull stubby pencils
with the erasers chewed off,
cheap radios played too loud,
the rank smell of stale coffee[--]
yet still glow
with the inner fire of an opal,
still taste like honey.

April 20, 2015

There is No Title Today

Today was the All College Reading, the last reading of the semester. I still love just sitting there listening to poems, even if I'm alone like I was today. Some of the poems were really great and I read a couple of mine and feel like maybe I'll be confident enough to turn in my portfolio, though I know I'll never think it's finished and I guess that is one of the beautiful and horrible things about writing.

I wrote a longer, more thought through poem today, but decided not to share it. It's been an emotionally rough day even if overall I can't complain that it wasn't a good day. Maybe I really am just that much of a child of sunshine that lack of sun really does make it that hard to smile. Today was rain and grey clouds, and according to the internet I can expect grey rain for the rest of the week as well. Oh well. Rain is beautiful in it's own way. In the meantime here is a not so beautiful rain poem.

There is No Title Today

The rain here smells like skunk.
I breathe in
and want to choke.
Maybe it's not the rain,
maybe it's the smoke from cigarettes.
Someone in my Concepts Class
proudly announced
he'd smoked a joint that morning
to celebrate April 20th.
I don't fit in with these college kids
and I don't want too.
The rain today
makes me feel too old.

April 19, 2015

After Peter Pan in the Spring

Today was crazy full and eventful, something that doesn't seem to happen very often. I started off going to church where I now have a friend to sit next to every week, a blessing I hadn't realized how much I needed. Then I met a group of friends and we went to a Japanese festival where I got to try on a kimono and watch incredible drummers and try my hand at Japanese archery. It was great.

I then did a little bit more homework, but still need to choose my pieces for the portfolio which is kind of stressing me out... I should just draw titles out of a hat.

Then I went to another friend's dance performance and got to see some super talented dancers show off the work they've been practicing all year. I love watching dance, even if I have zero rhythm and know I could never be a dancer for many, many reasons. Still, it's great to watch others, especially when one of them is my friend. I like dancer friends.

I finished my day watching "Finding Neverland", the story behind the story of Peter Pan, and forgot how sad it was. I usually make it a point not to watch movies that could be even remotely sad here in college. I try stick to brainless chick-flicks that will make me laugh. But tonight I wanted something book related and this one showed up on Netflix so I ended up crying a little over these characters and telling myself that I need to get back to writing and write something as wonderful as Peter Pan.

Instead I just wrote this poem about the movie about the play which is also a book...

Maybe I should add a little disclaimer, I'm also still stuck in this awful seasonal sadness and I need the sun to come back and the wind to go away. It has been a lot warmer, but it's still cold enough that sun is a precious commodity and I'm going crazy. My poor little Oaxaca soul doesn't know what to do with all this cold.

After Peter Pan in the Spring

I fall into Neverland
when the sunbeam warms my dorm-room floor.
Music plays words I don't know
but I hum along as I lay in the yellow square
and my eyes close all on their own.

Everything in this junk drawer head of mine
soaks into the carpet
and I believe for once that I can fly.

The ocean is my sky
and I count jellyfish or stars
and they are all the same,
and my eyes are still closed.

Neverland is a breath of peace
or sometimes just a breath at all
and I forget to think about the things
I need to remember.

Instead Neverland is all
emptiness and childish inklings
and the characters I'll one day share
like spilled marmalade sticking to a wash cloth.

The yellow sun drops through my window
and I forget the dead tree in the yard
and pretend that there is always sun
in my own Neverland. 

April 18, 2015

Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note- Amiri Baraka

I'm not entirely sure what I did today. A lot of sitting around and sort of waiting for something to happen. I've reached that point in the year where I feel restless. I want to rearrange my room, reorganize my desk, travel. In two weeks I leave for Colorado and I feel impatient today. I know it's probably a little too soon to start packing, but I'm restless and I know I'm going to end up packing anyway and living two more weeks of my life out of a suitcase.

Since I knew it was too soon to pack, though, I spent the day trying to find other things to do, working on homework that isn't due for another week, trying to braid my short hair.  I even took a walk thinking I'd feel better if I got out of my room. Eventually my roommate convinced me to go splurge on a milkshake so we walked downtown and then window shopped in the mall and came back up to campus to watch Taylor Swift music videos and a chick flick.

Unfortunately, now I feel tired and extremely unpoetical. Plus I am thinking I should do the homework due Monday... I mean, finishing all my Thursday homework was great, but Monday comes first...

So  here's a poem by Amiri Baraka instead of one by me. I found this for my Creative Writing Anthology and I love it so much. I have no daughter, and my mom isn't here, but tonight I will be talking into my own clasped hands and giving God all the thoughts clouding up my mind.

Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note
Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones)
Lately, I’ve become accustomed to the way
The ground opens up and envelopes me
Each time I go out to walk the dog.
Or the broad edged silly music the wind
Makes when I run for a bus…
Things have come to that.
And now, each night I count the stars.
And each night I get the same number.
And when they will not come to be counted,
I count the holes they leave.
Nobody sings anymore.
And then last night I tiptoed up
To my daughter’s room and heard her
Talking to someone, and when I opened
The door, there was no one there…
Only she on her knees, peeking into
Her own clasped hands.

April 17, 2015

Excellent Somehow

Tonight was the Academic Excellence Dinner for my school's Communications and Creative Media Division. People with a GPA above 3.6 were invited and given certificates and then after dinner we sat through hours of specific awards within each major.

I'm a freshman, and freshmen probably don't get awards at this kind of thing very often, and while I'm pretty involved with writing related things I'm not one of those people starting my own magazine or anything. Anyway, my friends and I got in a little late (getting ready for formal events takes time...) and barely found seats. We ended up sitting next to that favorite professor, which made me pretty happy. Also at the table was the head of the language department and I had a blast talking in Spanish again, even if she spoke South American Spanish instead of Mexican.

As we're sitting there my Professor looks over and asks if I'll help him pass out papers. I laugh and say sure and then realize he's serious and wants me to join him on stage and hand out the awards. Of course at that point it's too late, and pretty soon we're standing up to cross the room and get on stage. I stand up, take three wobbly steps in high heels that I really shouldn't be wearing since I can't walk in heels, and then all the envelopes with the awards slide out of the folder onto the floor.

Luckily, my professor didn't notice and just laughed that I took so long to get to the stage with him. I hand out the certificates and envelopes to everyone he calls up (managed not to give the wrong one, not to drop anything else, and not to trip) and of course then he says my name last and talks about how I came from Mexico to chilly Vermont but brought all the flavor and spiciness with me.

So now I have a twenty-five dollar gift card to Amazon, a certificate with my first AND last name spelled incorrectly, and a crazy amount of pride and excitement and reassurance that I probably am in the right place after all, even if winter lasts too long and food isn't spicy.

I know this is probably more than enough writing for today, but it didn't end there. I left the event a little early and as I was waiting for my friends to come out one of the editors of the Literary Magazine, Willard and Maple, came up and said they've been talking about getting me more involved in Willard and Maple. Nothing formal at this point, but he wants me to drop in the office hours and help him and next semester's editors plan out the next edition of the magazine and sort of carry the torch for future classes of Willard and Maple.

It's so crazy, because my favorite professor had mentioned to me the idea of being the Lit Mag editor and since then the idea had seemed really great. But now I've kind of been officially invited to go down that path. You have no idea how excited I am and how much I feel like a writer tonight but also how crazy and surprising this all is at the same time.

A poem (one of those Japanese Tanka's I talked about yesterday).

Excellent Somehow

Sometimes excellence
comes after dropping papers,
trembling hands on stage
while you read off the winners,
and then I see my own name. 

April 16, 2015

Constellations in the Coffee

Today is Thursday again, the mad rush of class after class and homework during my one hour break. But today we paraded through campus in a single file line and wrote Japanese poetry during my Creative Writing class and the sunshine felt so beautiful.

In Japanese class I had to hold my eyelids open, but I only missed one word on the quiz and someday I will write those Japanese poems in Japanese. In the Literary Magazine class we reviewed art instead of poetry, and the change of pace was nice, as well as the enjoyment of getting to look at pictures instead of straining my eyes over more words.

Then I went to a poetry reading. (I feel like, outside of  class, I spend the vast majority of my college time attending writing-related events.) Anyway, this one wasn't student reading. Nancy Means Wright came and read some of her poetry as well as a retiring Champlain professor and Jim Ellefson, my academic adviser, favorite professor and old man mentor, even if he isn't fully aware of this last part yet. All three poets were fantastic, much better than the previous two non-student readings I'd attended.

Anyway, the whole reading made me happy, and kind of wishful, and hopeful, scared about the future? I'm not really sure, but there was a lot of emotion and a reminder of why I'm here in Vermont of all places and why I know that no matter what else in life, I want to write. I was going to post one of my Japanese poems but this one came out after the reading and I like it more. So here it is, enjoy.

Constellations in the Coffee

The lamp makes constellations in my coffee cup
and my heart feels like an astronaut;
my ribs are too tight.
I stir the coffee faster,
as if I might find answers there
but this time all I see is a wooden stick
and I imagine how the splinters must feel.
I hear the poems I want to write
and my novels cry "betrayed,"
but the longing keeps my space-ship body spinning
and I know earth is too far gone.
No matter where I look
my eyes find constellations.

April 15, 2015


Okay... so I was trying to write a Pantoum... but turns out this is still not a pantoum. Maybe at some point I'll go back and fix this, or finish it and fix it, but for now here's something at least.
I hope you all realize that these blog poems are usually very much first drafts and not my best work. I'm saving that for the publishers. Anyway, here you go:


You held me like a feather in the wind
And kissed my head as if to kiss my scars
You pulled my heart the way the planets bend
And freed my soul from fear's constricting bars

You kissed my head as if to kiss my scars
And healed the pain I hid behind a wall
And freed my soul from fear's constricting bars
So I could live to fly and not to fall

You healed the pain I hid behind a wall
You pulled my heart the way the planets bend
So I could live to fly and not to fall
You held me like a feather in the wind

April 14, 2015

Zarzamora Hunting

So this poem is incomplete, but I feel like all my thoughts today have been incomplete. Time is passing slowly and quickly and all at once and not at all and it all feels very strange.
Today I walked down to Church St. (Still sunshine, Praise the Lord!) and got a free Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream Cone. I have no idea what flavor they gave me... I just asked for something with a lot of peanut butter. Whatever I got was delicious.
But I've also today been looking forward to spending the summer with my favorite sister. I called her today panicked about insurance stuff and frustrated and emotional, and from the way I asked her whether I needed a witness to sign she was able to figure out all of that and tell me to take a deep breath and smile. I love her so much and I cannot wait to see her in three weeks!!!
So anyway, this very incomplete collection of thoughts which will count as a poem in order to fulfill my April goals, is all about her.

Zarzamora Hunting

The taste of blackberries on my tongue
makes my face cringe with the sour
and the memory of your eye-
red and squinty-
because you leaned too far
while reaching for that berry.

We used to dye our shirts blue
as we pulled the edges into baskets
to collect enough to
"make a pie,"
but back at home
we only ever brought stained fingers
and one or two uneaten moras.

We got a thousand cuts
from climbing through those thorns
and had to hop barbed wire fences
and climb trees.
But we found hidden forts,
made the forest our playground.
Mom saw messy clothes
and your red eye,
but we knew: the zarzamora dew was magic.

April 13, 2015

Vermont in Spring

My mom mentioned that I should practice more structured writing as well and not just free verse. So I tried a Villanelle for today and feel very unsatisfied but decided to post it anyway. Also- disclaimer- I said we because it fit the rhythm and the attitude of Vermont as a whole- but I am wearing jeans and a t-shirt and am not- nor do I plan to be- skimpily dressed. It is warm, but my arms and legs are not bear.
Though this sun is marvelous and I am super excited to be able to wear dresses again without freezing. I just need to wind to die down first.
But anyway, here's a not so great poem about Spring.

Vermont in spring is hopeful shorts and dresses
The hobo coats abandoned for the hippies
Bare arms and legs and wild, wind-blown tresses

In spring us students live just as the sun says
Inside with downcast eyes- outside we're bubbly
Vermont in spring is hopeful shorts and dresses

Vermont in spring is crouching on wet grasses
While dew-ey trees are always, always dripping
Down arms and legs and Wild, wind-blown tresses

In spring it's like the sun itself has blessed us
We do not care our clothes are far too skimpy
Because this spring is hopeful shorts and dresses

We dance down to the lake for its caresses
And feel as wild as if we were tipsy
Bare arms and legs and wild wind swept tresses

The spring is ours, we're  free to make our choices
We'll watch the sun until our eyes are trippy
Vermont is spring is hopeful shorts and dresses
Bare arms and legs and wild, wind-swept tresses 


I didn't post yesterday! A million apologies! I really have no excuse but here's a poem anyway early Monday morning to make up for it.

Fills my blood 
Like a healing poison
And floods out of my face
In a smile. 
I want the sunshine 
To last forever
And I want the spring
To come and stay. 

April 11, 2015

Shaking Hands

So today was a wonderful day. I woke up at 9:00 (all on my own with no alarm clock just because. What kind of a college student am I?) and wrote four pages of a seven page research paper. I then failed at getting breakfast (I'll skip that part of the day. Not being able to access food in the cafeteria because it's so crowded with perspective students was not wonderful) but then I went to read a short story to some of the writing specific possible future students and talk a little bit about my experience at Champlain. 

The talking part wasn't as smooth as it could have been, and half way through I completely blanked on everything and just stared at my professor and shrugged. Anyway, a couple people specifically came to talk to me about the story after. 

Also, I'm totally friends with  the upperclassmen writing students and they're so cool and it's pretty great that I'm a first year and can still sit on a table and laugh with juniors and seniors. Just saying. Champlain is pretty neat. 

Then I came back, lounged on the floor of my room with a few friends as we browsed Pinterest to plan our future hairstyles. (I'm pretty sure I'm going to get a haircut tomorrow and I'm really excited...) 

Then everyone left and I wrote the rest of my paper and then worked on my journalism News Commentary and got a phone call from one of my best friends who had found a poem she wanted to read to me. Michelangelo's, um, something about grapes. It was fantastic. 

Anyway, I then went to an end of semester poetry/story/moth/improv presentation put on by the school's Literary Magazine class I'm part of, and got to spend the rest of my afternoon eating guacamole and listening to some amazing poets. I read that Hole-y Sky poem way back from April 2nd. 

Anyway, I got back just in time to call my sister and talk to her a little bit, and now I'm just crazy excited at the thought of getting to spend my summer with her. Agh! I can't wait!!!

Without further ado, here's a poem about how it feels to read your creative non-fiction to a group of awkward high school wanna be writing students and their uncomfortable, nervous, soon to be empty nest parents.

I clutch the paper tightly
and pound my fists against the wood
to keep my hands from shaking

my words sound foreign
in the crowded air
but I try my best to swallow,
let the words come smoothly
keep the crackle from my voice

I finish and sit quickly
my face red
my hands hot
and try to laugh with someone else
to ease the tension in my chest

when it’s all over
someone comes up
“I liked your story”
his eyes meet mine, familiar
though we’ve never met
“What mission are you with?”

and for some reason I forget
"Latin America World United Mission"
I stammer and bite my lip
He tells me about Wycliffe friends
and I miss Oaxaca

Someone else comes up
“I liked your story”
He says he wants to write fiction
He’s not much of a poet
wants to write screenplays

I let the others talk about filming
and the specifics of each major
and I sit there and feel my face turn pink
and try to keep my hands
from shaking.

April 10, 2015

Thesis Statement

I've written several variations of this poem and am still not satisfied, but oh well. I don't quite feel inspired to write another poem and would rather just watch some episodes of Parks and Rec and not do any kind of work tonight... so I'm just going to use this poem and hopefully eventually work on it until I come out with a better final version.

Thesis Statement

The first day of high school
you showed me the picture of a lock and key
and said to write a thesis statement.

Well, here's one:
(I made it through four years
and learned what you meant)
It takes someone great
to find the right key for a lock.

I wish
you could still be in Mexico-
without chemo therapy-
without cancer-
to keep finding keys.

Who else
will teach those kids
the power of words
the way you did?

April 9, 2015

this is not a pantoum

So today I'm exhausted. I always have four (one three hour) classes on Thursday and usually a poetry/moth/famous author reading after my last class. Luckily today nothing extra, but seven and a half hours of class in one day is still a lot, especially when the first class is all about depressing things that happen in the world, the second is just long, the third is Japanese, and the fourth starts at 5:30...
Some days it's all good and I can handle all the busy-ness- no problem.  But today I woke up to a snow covered world which progressed into something like rain and a lot of mud and grey clouds and no sun. This no sun thing is killing me. I need some sunlight.

But, anyway, I ranted enough. Here's a poem that rants some more:

this is not a pantoum

long days steal the air from my lungs
classfood classclassfoodclass
Thursdays make me choke
on poems I would normally love

"write a pantoum"
but all I can think is sleep
and when can I see you again

crowded cafeterias
I have to shove my way for food
which I don't even want in the end
just pick at the pasta
take a few bites 'cause I should

make it back to my room
in time to crash on the empty bed
drink green tea
tell my roommate 'bout my day
try to shower in the always full bathroom

give up and
write another poem

April 8, 2015


So I decided to write another prompt based poem today. I actually wrote another poem but it ended up pretty long and I think I'm going to use it for other things, so it didn't get to go on the blog. And the other poem I've been trying to write just still hasn't quite worked out. So here's a very short poem about a picture I was unable to copy onto the blog...


They did not say
how the boats would freeze into ice
leave us suspended in a world
where sky and earth are equal
and I need only reach
over the edge of the boat
to touch the moon

April 7, 2015


I wasn't sure what poem to write today. I wrote a couple, played around with words, finally just decided to write this because I need to post something today.

There are a couple of other poems in the back of my mind but I just can't quite get them onto paper. Tomorrow is a less busy day, so maybe then I can work on them some more, pull these wanna-be poems out of my brain and stick them into ink. Or maybe I'll just ramble out some more words about words. You never know.


I read the dictionary sometimes,
at night when I can't talk to anyone,
or don't want to,
and school is too much pressure,
and I don't want to think.

Words sooth me,
how they run down my throat
like hot soup on a cold day
until they fill my brain
and I cannot worry any longer.

Tonight I am reading the letter "I"
"Intermittent: coming and going;
ebbing and flowing; periodic."

Last time I read the "I"s I hated them,
just "I-N..." "I-N..." "I-N..."
but tonight I hang on every word
and go on for pages at a time
before I fall asleep.

The power of the words and me
comes and goes, ebbs and flows.

April 6, 2015

My Demons Look Like Stars

I found this on Pinterest and traced it back to this place.

Today's poem was inspired by this picture. I have this Pinterest board full of writing prompt pictures, and sometimes I go through the board and write one sentence for each picture. It's  a really good practice for me, because as a novelist I tend to want to say so much more about my topic and have a hard time writing anything short. Sometimes my one sentences don't stay at just a sentence. Sometimes, like today, they turn into poems.

My Demons Look Like Stars

My whole body holds untold stories
like birds afraid to migrate.
They are huddled
inside my head
and their eyes show a thousand stars
glowing in the midnight of my mind.

I am afraid
if I do not walk slowly enough
they will unleash-
pull the blood from my veins
up through strands of the hair
on my head and,
in a flurry of hateful cries,
they will carry me away
until I, too, am only stars.

April 5, 2015


Hallelujah, Christ is risen! I am so amazed today at what my Kind did for me in taking my sins upon his shoulders so that He could die for my wrongs and come back to life, victorious over death. I spent the day in a flurry of flowery dresses, Easter eggs, chocolate, and cute bunnies and lambs. I love Easter and the idea of Spring and fresh life and new starts.

Today I have a poem about Easter. I'm not actually all that happy with the poem, but the formatting was a lot of fun and such a powerful reminder. My God is everywhere, and in everything, and crazy as it seems He cares about me and my silly struggles through college. He goes through them all with me.

So, here, a poem to my Best Friend, First Love, and the King of my Soul: Happy Easter!

 I'm Perfection
the gap pulls apart, tears Creator from creation
Eternal life falls away at a sin that brings death
 and a people once loved are abandoned to fear
Until He comes
Light becomes 
man with no sin
Faces death to
cross  the  gap
Bring the  light
back   into the
darkness.  sin.
He  is  victory
Death  has no
power  to kill.


April 4, 2015

Shadowed Pride

It's funny. I think three times today I sat down feeling crazy-inspired to write today's poem. I even had a title in mind for one poem: "Duking it out with the Devil" but as soon as I sat down in front of whatever writing device my brain just sort of dried up and all I wanted to do was take a nap.

Probably  didn't help that I washed my sheets and my bed is freshly made. It's been begging me to come sleep all day.

I learned a new board game today, called Wonders, and even though I was so confused and completely lost, I think it's a pretty fun game and I'm excited to try again at some point when I can actually stop and think about strategy rather than just trying to figure out how to play.

I also have an almost idea for the Shadow Whispers now, and I'm thinking maybe before summer comes up I'll have something to work with as a new attempt at making Shadow Whispers into a publishable piece of work. I'm not sure yet, but my brain has been pointing me back to the Whisperers an awful lot lately. 

Here, a poem in honor of them, it's not very good, and doesn't tell much about the story or the Whisperers or the changes I've considered bringing up, but hey: it's kind of a sonnet.

Shadowed Pride

We tried to beat them on our own.
We thought up plans, and trained our minds,
and waited, hid behind the stone,
until we could unchain the binds
that held our world in darkness caught.
we formed a team, courageous, strong,
and swift, unbeatable. We thought
our victory would end in song.

 And then our pride brought death like air
a silent paint that drowned us all
we cowered under made up stares
while waiting for the sword to fall.
And yet the Shadow gave us life
and saved our world from pride's dark knife. 

April 3, 2015

College Hugs

Poem number three. I actually wrote a couple with unsatisfactory results, and I'm still not quite happy with this one, but I need to put something up and this comes a little bit close. I think part of why I don't want to post this one is because I hate saying that I'm homesick again. I don't want my mom to read this and feel sad for me or worried about me or sad because she misses me too.

But I am getting through college and it's good. Today got up to the sixties and the sun came up and the wind went down and I walked down to the lake and sun-bathed with a few friends beside the lake. It was nice. It's good to know Spring is coming, even though tomorrow is predicted snow. Still... warmth is coming, and I have hope that the cold won't last too much longer.

I'm also getting closer to coming to terms with the classes for next semester even with a few anxious moments of classes not being offered and favorite professors leaving. I think next semester will be a good one anyway as far as classes go. And I got registered for housing, which is fantastic considering about 100 people got stuck wait-listed because my college doesn't know how to count.

Anyway, here's a poem for April 3rd.

College Hugs

I made a blanket today.

It doesn't feel much like home,
but it's soft,
and I can curl up and pretend like it's a hug.

Of course I don't want a real hug
from a real person
and I kind of pull away from touch today,
like I'm afraid of emotion.

I guess sometimes a mom-hug
just is not the same
and all I have is this blanket.

April 2, 2015

The Sky Has Holes

My boyfriend once told me: "If wishes were kisses there'd be no room left in the sky for the stars."  This may not make sense to people other than me, but I love this quote so much and the thoughts that it provokes and the poem that it is.
For my Creative Writing Class this semester I get to choose fifty poems to hand-copy into an anthology, and I have two or three favorites. I noticed that most of my favorites have a line hidden in them that talks about stars."Girl" by Lisa Zaran, "Sleeping in the Forest" by Mary Oliver, "Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note" by Amiri Baraka, "Do Not Stand at m Grave and Weep" by Mary Elizabeth Frye, "i carry your hear (i carry it in my heart)" by e.e.cummings, just to name a few.
There's a good chance I'll be posting some of those on this blog at some point,especially "Girl" or "Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note" because I love them so much.

Anyway, all those these mentioned poems have some line about stars. I love stars. I love the way the night sky looks. So anyway, I wrote a poem about the stars. Enjoy! 

The Sky has holes.
Someone stretched Sky over a light too bright
for our fragile human eyes.
We didn't want to see,
so we closed our faces like blinds
and built the night sky to hide the shine.

In the day we pretended not to notice,
focused on the ground,
and the leaves of trees that shivered at us
and the clouds, we watched the clouds
and turned our backs to the sun.

But at night the light blinded the crickets
and silenced the frogs,
and we did not want to see anymore.
So we built the sky.
We stretched all that blackness above our heads,
a perfect canvas that could not be painted,
and we found pride in our alone-ness.
The darkness hung there and we slept.

Now the sky has holes.
Years wore on and the seems began to rip,
little spots of string pulling away from the stitches
one by one, almost unnoticeable
until one overzealous flyer pulled the sky a little too hard
and the strings fell out
and the holes opened up
and the light shone through.

Oh the light.

It filled us with emotions that mixed like vinegar
with the baking soda of our thoughts
and we felt fear and we felt longing.
We could not sew the sky again and so we left it,
and the light pierces the fabric
all the way down to our hearts
and we are helpless to the power
we cannot understand.The light
pushes in through our bodies and drips out
of our lips or hands and falls on paper
waiting to one day reach up
and tear the sky away. 

April 1, 2015

April Means Poems

Hey folks!
Guess what? Today is April First! (As marked by the dressers stacked in front of my roommate's closet and the stuffed version of her sitting on the bed with a ransom note for kidnapped stuffed animals.)

However, aside from pranks, April First means the beginning of Poetry Month. Last year I wrote a poem a day throughout April and then missed April 29th and was devastated. So this year I'm giving it another go, but with one pretty big adaptation.

I will be posting a poem a day onto this lovely blog. So most of the time I'll post whatever poem I wrote that day. But there's a good chance I'll write something I really like and may even consider publishing, in which case I will not put it up. On those days I'll probably put up another poem from some published poet to replace my own work, because there are just so many beautiful poems in the world.

So anyway, without further ado, the first poem of April 2015:

Growing Up and Doing My Own Laundry

Am alone today,
Just me and a camel, owl, knight, lizard, lego-ninja
Sitting here in this messy room
Wishing we could just stay kids.

Everything in adult life
Feels much too complicated,
Trying to eat dryer sheets
While I fold myself inside the washer
I never could quite fit.

But today there’s a list,
One of the many I scribble out every day,
To do today:
What I need to get done:
Do These:

And I have
Three out of twelve crossed off
And don’t want to do the rest.

I need to wash my clothes,
But three dollars is so much
And the basement is so far from the second floor.
I’ll do it tomorrow,
Or the next day.
Maybe this weekend.

It’s funny that a poem
Counts as work for this list,
But I guess I can’t complain.

I’m alone today,
And stuffed into adulthood
 that doesn’t fit
And that’s just how life is
And I don’t get to play with toys
And be a little kid.
I just have to watch the camel
And write this poem.