Poem Every Day in July 10: Half an Hour

On roadtrips, we all moaned
of squished toes. The minivan lacked
legroom; it seemed our knees
were millimeters from goring
our eyes. One of us would pull a chair back
and smack into another––
like a humanoid chemical equation,
shifting towards equilibrium,
fluctuating and hitting
each other’s shins.

We spent hours like that. Days.
Mom pulled her hair
and drove with her elbows.
We bickered while leaving the hotel parking lot
in the morning, and we sneered
as the car screeched into the next at night.

That was years ago. With a bigger van
came less time for the road.
We pack lighter now, only seven days
of clothes. We stretch our arms outwards
and still can’t feel the window.
We have space, but no time
for chatter, for yelling, for chair-fights.
The clock moves too quickly
for laughter and violence.


Saturday, 10 a.m.: A Poem


the mentioned view

This morning is mine.
My glasses are folded in my purse, asleep
in their case, and to my nude eye, the distance is blurry––
the nearby girl tucking her hair
into a braid, the scant fluttering yellow
I suppose is November wind. And here I am,
at the library, in a chair by the wall,
between windows, dodging the downpour
of white light. The sun
is a cup of coffee, turned over, spilling heat upon the earth.
But Hephaestus has forged this wall as a shield
against Apollo.

By the time noon makes its perch at the zenith,
my family will be here. They’ve made a seven-hour trip to visit me.
When they arrive,
my time will belong to them.
I will put my glasses on
to see the changes in my sister’s face.
I’m certain there will be some new, shining
composition––altered eighth-notes on her skin
where she smiles, where she
cries. Maybe my brother
is taller again, defying
my commands. I am afraid
of how white my mother’s hair will seem.

I capture this hour like a lightning bug in my hand.
Its antennae tickle my palm. I seal my fingers
tightly, nails hard
in flesh. Something urges the hour outwards––worries
like a porch light, a center of gravity into which
it might plunge. But I will not permit it.
Although it writhes, it is safe.
Although I pant, I breathe.

10-Day Blog Challenge…Day 6

Picture 20Five People Who Mean A Lot, in No Order Whatsoever

1. My mom! My mom is the best!

2. My best friend, who I love very much and see very often. We are very different but it’s okay, that’s part of the reason we’re so close.

3. My other best friend,who I love very much as well but don’t see very often. We’re pretty much exactly alike, although she’s a bit of a social butterfly whereas I am socially awkward. The only reason I don’t get to visit with her more often is because she lives three-ish hours away. We’ve been friends since preschool (I exaggerate not) and I think we’ll keep being friends for a while.

4. My little sister. Of course. I don’t know where I’d be without her. My little brother too.

5. And finally…drum roll please… this kid who talked to me this one day. I was sitting by myself, and he walks up and talks to me. He was very friendly about it. He never actually told me his name, although I happened to hear one of his friends call him, and I never told him mine. However, not only was it very exciting, but it gave me an ego boost too. Maybe I look more approachable than I feel like I do. So, to the kid who came up to talk to me, thanks. You might not have thought about it too much but it meant a lot.

Ciao for now,


Three Roses



Anna watered the rose. It wasn’t too big or too strong, but it was something she’d done with her mom. She didn’t get to do a lot with her mom since her dad ran off to live with his girlfriend and her mom took up three jobs on her own.

The rose was bright red, glowing in the garden. It seemed to enjoy the droplets Anna gave it. She imagined that with each drink, it got taller and taller and eventually it would touch the clouds.

She thought about flying away. She could be a rose fairy, like her favorite book character, Rosina the Rose Fairy, and have ruby wings and delicate crimson slippers. She would soar in the clouds with the rose.

But looking now, Anna realized that the rose was pretty situated in the dirt. Its roots made sure of it. She’d put it there not a month ago. Trapping it. Dooming it.

She gave it more water. If it was big and tall, it wouldn’t mind be stuck so much. It would be able to feel all the parts of the atmosphere and look the stars in the face. Nobody could really suffer when they were strong and healthy.

Anna coughed. She looked for her mom’s car pulling up the driveway, but it didn’t show. Saddened, and with an empty bucket, she trudged back inside.

Soft thunder started. A little bit of mist fell outside. Anna opened up the curtains and stared at the rose. Although it was two stories down from her little apartment, she had no trouble finding it. Its redness made it seem like it kept staring back at her. She kept staring at it when the lightning flashed and the harsh rain pellets hammered down on its petals, staring until she fell asleep with her chin on the back of the couch, waiting for her mother.


Of all the things Ellen expected to get in the mail with Gabriel’s return address, this was not on the list.

It wasn’t a hate letter, it wasn’t a desperate plea for her to come back. It wasn’t even a scrapbook of memories. It was wrapped up in bubble wrap and buried inside three envelopes under that.

She sniffed it. The rose smelled like a rose, despite its obvious age. A little bit of pink hid at the deepest corners of the petals.

At one point this rose had been the perfect shade of magenta. That had been over a year ago. Ellen cradled it gently in both hands, inspecting it closely with her eyes. She remembered exactly how Gabriel had looked when he’d given it to her. He was wearing black skinny jeans with a tuxedo jacket, Converse and a tie. Her first thought when she’d seen him was that she’d never seen him look more handsome. She’d smiled ridiculously. He’d blushed.

Now the flower sat in her hands. The flower told Ellen everything she needed to know, without giving a word. It was the time capsule of every promise Gabriel had ever made her, and for that reason she felt herself start to cry. She couldn’t stop remembering. She couldn’t stop looking at the blossom.

The band was still attached that she’d worn around her wrist all those months ago. Mindlessly, she put it back on.

It was almost like Ellen could feel the steps she took with him, every time she’d laughed with him. Every word she’d yelled at him before she slammed the door, every meaningless thing that had blown through her mind since then. None of that matters now, the rose seemed to say. It’s all over.

The rose was intimate, as though it brought Gabriel into the room with it. She touched it tenderly and a handful of withered petals fluttered to the tile floor. Something broke inside of Ellen. It was all over.

III–Knowing Sophie

The old man spoke as if he’d never met the girl he was talking about. He kept saying that she was always so cheerful, and loved nothing more than a day with her friends. He said things about her fantastic grades. Like that was all there was to know about her.

The Sophie that Christopher knew was much different.

He twiddled with the long, green stem of the rose in his pocket. Christopher was never good at sitting still, and now was no exception. His right foot was bobbing around in the air, and he thought one of those distant aunts had started to notice.

The rose had plenty of room in Christopher’s pocket. He’d given it a little plastic cup of water to rest in, and wrapped it in the design he’d cut out from Sophie’s favorite band shirt. Christopher had been careful to pick every needle off the stem so Sophie couldn’t hurt herself. The rose had lush, red petals, Sophie’s favorite color.

The old man said something about her love of drawing. He made her seem like the next Michelangelo.

Christopher’s foot started dancing around more quickly as he waited for the old man and everyone else to leave. It seemed like an eternity before they finally did.

Christopher walked gingerly to the grave. Soggy leaves collapsed under his feet as he made his way. Cautiously, he lifted the rose from his pocket. His hands shook as he read her name on the granite, like it was just now coming to him. With all the tenderness in the world, he set the cup by Sophie’s grave. The rose seemed to shine redder and redder next to the drab, misty colors of the rest of the world. That was the first time he cried for his little sister, and he stayed there crying until his parents pulled him away.

Happy Patterns

wake up
water is cold
where is my notebook?
i hate (insert current weekday)
you can’t expect me to function
it’s (insert current weekday)
where is my notebook?
so hungry
yay lunch
yay sandwich
yay cookies
lunch is over already
such a long week
only one more hour
this hour never ends, does it?
do you know when we get out?
i hate public transportation
shut up
stupid people in the back
i don’t want to hear you swearing
especially not
on a (insert current weekday)
because they’re the worst
yay home
im alone
yay computer
lol look at that bunny
no work
why work?
i want internet
i hate working because it’s frustrating
not alone anymore?
be quiet kids
please be quiet
please shut up now please
how much more work could i possibly have?
shut up kids i am
trying to work
k work is done
now what
i am so bored i am so bored i am so bored
someone please give me something to do
yay dinner
yay food
yay tv
k bed time
please be quiet kids
i don’t care if you have to do more homework
i want sleep
in bed
half hour
plus fifteen minutes
plus fifteen
want to sleep
wake up
water is cold