Please. Care. By R.G

Please, Care

 

You say that you don’t care what others think? Let’s think about this.

You, who shouts at people to avert their eyes whenever they happen to look upon you.

You, who wears short shorts and skirts for yourself and no one else.

Please, accept the fact that you do care what others think,

That you do dress for others, and that is okay.

People say they want respect, that they want to be valued as an individual, yet they make no effort to try and make you respect them.

You want a job working for a high profile company when you spent hours of your life letting someone draw on your body.

You express your individualism at the sacrifice of your future life.

Kids nowadays, there is an award at every step of life.

There’s no motivation to value what others think of you, only what you think of yourself.

Darwinian selection, it disagrees.

So please, care.

 

 

 

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Mirror by L.M.

She takes one look in the mirror and starts to cry,

Ugly

She wonders why she ate today, she was doing so well,

Fat

She hears the whispers and murmurs of people talking about her,

Worthless

She looks down at the scars on her wrists, legs, and stomach,

Unlovable

Little does she know, that when he looks at her he sees

Beauty

When he sees her scars, he feels her pain

Not ugly,

Beautiful

Not fat,

Perfect

Not worthless,

She is his world

Not unlovable,

Adored

The Youngest Beekeeper by M.S.

 

“I want to be a beekeeper!” She shouts proudly clasping her hands together. “Hey Maya! Take a look!” As her fingers unravel a bee buzzes out seemingly confused flying around in circles around her. “I caught it on the hibiscus bush, cool right?” I stare blankly at her with my mouth partly opening gawking at what I had just witnessed. Bees? I was positively terrified. I had never been stung and I wasn’t planning on my first time come from a bee my very own sister aggravated. I always imagined one of those bees my sister caught to fly straight up to me and sting me on the face. But they never did. And in some magical way with all the bugs and creatures my sister has caught, not one has stung her. She’s like a bug whisperer.

As the bee loops on out of sight, I let out a breathe of air that I was holding in since I saw the infestation. I had just avoided what could have been a terrible catastrophe. “Maya! Get over here! There are so many bees!”

Spring. I hated spring. Especially in Massachusetts. I couldn’t handle all the bugs polluting our fresh air outside. Living right by a river, I always ended up being mosquito food the second I stepped foot outside. And mosquitoes loved me. But the real danger were the bees. I causally motioned over to the bloomed hibiscus bush we have on the side of our house. The house we lived in was the same age as me, give or take a few days, but every year on my birthday I celebrated the birth of the house too, and everything I loved about it. It made me feel connected to something surreal. I always thought it was funny that the house was so big, and I was still so small despite being the same age. The hibiscus bush has always been there for as long as I can remember, and every time I got home from school I’d be sure to check on it to make sure it was still alive and well.

Sure enough there it was, a colony of what seemed like a million bees infesting the beautiful hibiscus bush, and my sister was there having a gleeful time. I panicked, unsure of how to save the gorgeous flowers. “Isn’t this great, the bees are pollinating the flowers!” Pollinating? The bees are pollinating it? Dear god… they’re destroying it! It’s a disease! Save it! Hurry up and save it! My face grew red in fury and I started shaking. I knew all insects were the scum of the Earth, there is no such thing as a good bug! Above all, I couldn’t believe my sister was letting these beasts kill our hibiscus bush. I couldn’t take it anymore, and I found myself standing there confused, angry, and crying.

“What’s wrong? Why are you crying?” My sister says in disbelief to my distress. “They’re just bees.” Through my blurry eyes and shaky palms I slowly lift my hands to point at a bee crawling into a flower. Her eyes widened once she realized what I was so worked up over, and she let out a chuckle. I bent my head down and started to rub the tears away.

“They’re helping the flowers.” She laughed. Her wisdom shocked me, freezing me. Helping? Could those disgusting things actually be helping this planet? There’s no way. They’re killing all things good. I looked up, ready to fight her with my own words of wisdom, but then she said something even more surprising than the last: “Bees are a huge part of keeping this land beautiful.” A bee crawled out of the flower all covered in yellow fuzz. I watched as it started to hover over the hibiscus as if to say thank you and goodbye!  It seemed almost… peaceful. As it flew along its merry way humming its song away from the bush, I inspected the flower, noticing everything was okay. “Pollination is nothing bad, Maya. You see, I love bees for all the busy hard work they do behind the scenes to keep the world intact. And no one ever thanks them for their work! In fact, just as much as the flower helps the bee, the bee also helps the flower.”

I couldn’t believe it, I mean I knew my sister was crazy, but there is no way she was crazy enough to make this stuff up. To my three year old brain, everything was unknown and everything unknown was evil, and that’s just how I thought. However as I watched the millions of bees swarm around the colors of the flowers, I saw a symphony to it, and knew just for once my sister was right. Maybe there was some good insects in the world. Maybe their is a harmony to our planet that needs these creatures. There has to be a reason for their existence besides just to annoy me. I mean, I guess if they aren’t doing any harm to the hibiscus bush, they can stay. For now. Just as long as they stay far, far, far away from me.

“You don’t welly wanna be a beekeeper do ya sis?” I the words slowly left my mouth as I questioned her.

“I can be anything I want to be, Maya, but bees sure are cool.”

My Solitary Confinement by E.M.

My Solitary Confinement

15 days of tears and pouring rain had passed by slower than any in my entire life. I still had another seven days to go before I could get back on an airplane and fly from Asheville, North Carolina to Boulder, Colorado. I had never missed the sharp peaks of the Rocky Mountains more in my entire life. I had been dreading this trip since I was six years old. My dad instructed the North Carolina Outward Bound school, or NCOBS, for 8 years and I am the fifth of his five children to attend this 22 day test of character and endurance. In the last 15 days, I had hiked almost 100 miles with a 50 pound backpack, and 12 backpacking companions from all over the world. They didn’t make very good companions though, because only three of them spoke English. I had been sleeping on dirt under a tarp, with nothing but a thin layer of plastic and a mediocre sleeping bag to keep me warm. It had been raining for the last eight days, and when it starts raining in the Smokey Mountains, it does not stop. At that point I was so close to strangling every other member of my “crew,” I needed some time alone. I had no idea what real alone time felt like, but I was about to find out.

I woke up on the 16th day of my 22 day trip ready to pack up camp and hike another 7 to 15 miles to our next campsite. That’s all we did all day; eat, hike, eat some more, and hike up and down more mountains and across more bridges until we finally found our next campsite. Blisters, cuts and bruises formed on everyone’s feet and ankles from the endless sea of vines, puddles and trails we had covered. However, this day was different. When we stopped for lunch, we were instructed not to put our backpacks back on. Puzzled, everyone looked at eachother and we moved off the trail to an open space in a wooded area. Our two instructors then handed out 6 ft X5ft  tarps with two pieces of peacord, sleeping bags, and toothbrushes with no further instructions. Then one by one, the instructors led each of us out into the dense woods, until we couldn’t see or hear them anymore. I was the second to last one to leave. I followed my mountain man of an instructor along a small creek until I reached a flat open area about 300 yards from where we had stopped for lunch. For the next two or three minutes, he explained how I would be left completely alone in the woods for the next three and a half days with no food, books, supplies or a watch. I was instructed to set up my tarp with the two strings I was given, and I was not allowed to leave the 10 ft X 10 ft area that had been cleared for safety purposes. He handed me a small bleach bottle and a water filter and walked away without another word. And that was it. I was completely alone in the woods of North Carolina.

The next couple of hours passed by quickly because I was busy contemplating the reality of what had just happened. I had never been alone for more than a few hours before, and even then I had things to entertain me. Here, I had nothing but the twigs and branches around me, and the dozens of spiders investigating the freshly cleared area. I could not see the sun through the dense tree tops, so I had no idea what time it could have possibly been. It felt like early evening, but there was no way to tell. Staring up at the green and brown canopy above me, I thought about what I was doing 15 days ago. I thought about hugging my mom and dad goodbye at the security gate in the A terminal at DIA, and then walking along the long skybridge to get to my gate all alone. I thought about the four hours I spent staring out the window of the plane, dreading sleeping on the damp ground of the North Carolina woods. I thought about my friends going to the pool and the fair, getting late night pizza and ice cream together while I was laying here all alone.

After waiting for what felt like three hours, but could have easily been 45 minutes, I started to get bored. I still had 73 hours left. I spent some time drawing pictures and letters in the dirt, and trapping the spiders with twigs. I was about to walk the five foot distance between me and the small stream to filter some water and wash the clothes I had been sweating in for the past eight days when I heard a loud boom.

I couldn’t see the sky, so I had no idea the thunderstorm was approaching until it was over my head. Luckily, the tree canopy in these mountains was so thick, the rain did not begin to fall through the leaves for about 15 minutes. I quickly strung my tarp up between two trees and placed all of my stuff  underneath. The rain began to fall, and it quickly became a downpour. It continued to rain until it was dark. I was laying in my tarp staring blankly at the green canvas above me, when I felt water on my feet. The water from uphill was running through my tarp to reach the stream five feet away. I had no flashlight, and it was getting so dark I could not see a single thing. No light got through the thick leaves of the trees above. Before it was completely dark, I was able to stuff my sleeping bag back into it’s protective plastic bag so it would not get wet. The absolute last thing I wanted on my backpacking trip was a damp sleeping bag. I spent the entire night sitting up, waiting for the storm to pass. I fell asleep when I saw light beginning to shine through the trees.

The next three days were uneventful and excruciatingly slow. I named spiders, talked to myself, and felt possibly every emotion a human can feel from loneliness to absolute joy, but the most constant emotion was boredom. I cried because I was all alone, and I cried because I missed my family and friends. I cried because I was spending the last month of my summer in the woods with people I didn’t like instead of saying goodbye to my boyfriend and brother before they left for college. At the time, it seemed like there would be no end to these three days.  I wish I could say I learned some great or inspiring lesson about myself when I was completely alone for 76 hours, but the truth is all I was really thinking about was the airplanes I could hear above me and how badly I wanted to be on one.

Collection of Poetry by O. K.

Thursday march 3rd 2016

‘I have nothing else to give so it is a pot full of yellow corn to warm your belly in the winter’

let the fire crackle and the metal fence warm your toes

I have nothing else to give you so I give you time.

time to sit and share

your worries and your wonders, I open myself to you so you can see my soul

I give you my soul because I have nothing else to give.

A soul that cares

the trees grow naked, the sun goes away

a soul that never ceases to think of running away

I have nothing else to give you so I give you my love.

love that makes you feel strong

on the days that you feel defeated and to love feels so hard

laugh so loud it echos for miles

a love that will last well after we walk down the aisle

‘It’s all I have to give

and all anyone needs to live

to go on living inside

when the world outside no longer seems to care

remember

I love you’

 

Baca workshop

I lost who I am

let go of approval

Be one with the world. not my world

let go of the control and need for change

be still and watch the waves

take a step back let me see

all of the things the world has to offer me

 

Baca Workshop

Something happened to me when I was found myself in a dark pit

cobwebs of lies

whipping winds of betrayal

I am in the wrong?

short skirt and tighter shirt

let me show you how to really flirt

you stare at me, longing for anything to let you know I am okay

cold anger stirs in my heart. eyes wander astray

my head dizzy and chest tight

please god help me tell me how to go back

how to make things right

I’m in a pit trapped in insecurities, don’t take one step or they will call you out for your insanity

i am alone

but i have it all!

the nice hair, long legs big boobs and all

f*** you don’t see my mirror, the image that flashes back wants to disappear

the pressure for perfect it’s all too much

take me to the time in the park with my mom, the sun’s shining soft touch

i’m sorry i made things complicated

your words of affirmation are silent

my frustration is getting violent

i long for something deeper

an adventure far away in another world, something simple

somewhere that i feel safe and have a smile dimple to dimple

 

Come Slowly by R.C.

Come slowly, dear

watch your step and get over here.

Silly boy,

I can hear your heart and I smell you fear.

Come in to me,

I’ll show you your dream.

But don’t you ever think you’ll cross me again,

because next time I’ll show you the short end.

Crawl

scrape

run away

maybe tomorrow but not today.

GIve me your cheek

so I can beat it like clay.

I know that you won’t bleed

because if you follow my lead

you’ll only turn red. In the face in the sky

your pretty sunset’s gunna be mine.

Ink’ll splatter on the horizon

but you’ll never see ‘cause I want you stupid eyes on.

Me

me

look at me

The whole wide world will come down to my feet.

I know I’m short not tall

but I’ll be bigger than them all.

And when the storm I made has torn you down

I’ll hold you tight so you don’t drown.

And while your lungs

are choking I’ll use your tears to boil my enemies tongues.

Don’t get mad at me, I love you and I know what’s best so don’t you dare stand up

just stay down

Ill watch over you and I’ll watch my crown,

your precious

I hate you

but Ill keep you safe

don’t worry

but stress it

It’s your fault

but i’m sorry

and you really don’t deserve me

but i am the victim Ill and Ill always be

so don’t you ever question me .

Sail away you silly boy I can’t wait to watch you sink

but I love you

sail safe

I hope you make it back to your place

so I can erode you into dust for my champagne

 

Access to Presidential Debates by E.S.

Voting for president is a very important part of American culture. Our ancestors fought for the right to vote, and we need to protect that right. If you vote based solely off of gossip and memes appearing on Facebook, your vote will be uninformed and could help cause a poor leader to be elected. As stated in “Cord cutters cut off from presidential debates,” televised presidential debates are the most important factor influencing Americans’ vote (Taves). Restricting debates to cable news channels is unfair to many people, particularly younger generations and the poor. It’s imperative that direct access to live presidential debates through the internet is available for those who don’t have access to the cable news stations recording them.

Younger generations’ votes are very important. While older people often care more about researching presidential candidates and voting for the one they truly believe to be best, younger people are going to be the ones affected more by changes made by presidents. There are already so many young people who ignore elections or vote based off of something petty like appearance that the ones who truly do want to be informed and watch debates should not be cut off just because they choose the internet and Netflix over wasting money on cable. The goal should be to get as many people as possible to be informed voters, not to restrict information to those who pay.

One issue that every president will have to deal with is things that affect low-income families. Thus, families that can’t pay for cable should have access to presidential debates as well. Minimum wage, health care, and education are some of the biggest issues that greatly affect the poor. As with younger generations, many poor families don’t bother to vote. However, the ones who want to, and want to be informed about their candidate, should be able to watch presidential debates on the internet if they can’t afford cable.

The only reason there would be to restrict access to presidential debates is to cause a skewed election. You would have to think the candidate you’re voting for would be less likely to win with a larger sample size of voters, and that the older generation that still pays for cable are biased toward the person you want to win. And if that is your reasoning for being against internet access for debates, it’s blatantly easy to see the problem with that. Presidents need to be fairly elected, with as much information about them as possible being available to everyone.

Cable companies and TV channels don’t benefit from not letting the debate be shown elsewhere. Lower class families aren’t suddenly going to have the money for cable and start spending it just to see the debates, and young generations are likely to just ignore the debates if they can’t easily access them. Restricting access only causes there to be fewer people who care about voting, and fewer people making an informed decision about who they’re voting for. The former is only a good thing for candidates who can’t hope to win with a diverse group of voters, and by that fact shouldn’t be president in the first place, and the latter isn’t good for any president who doesn’t have something superficial as the main thing drawing people to them. Streaming presidential debates to the internet would allow everyone to be an informed voter, and wouldn’t harm news channels’ profits.

 

Works Cited

Taves, Max. “Cord cutters cut off from presidential debates.” CNET. CBS Interactive, 9 Nov. 2015. Web. 22 Jan. 2016.