Table of Contents Yellow (Friendship) Green (Nature) Red(Love) Purple (Hope and Imagination) Blue (Contemplation

)
Dear Reader, This year’s WE Magazine is a celebration of our unique and diverse personalities, which, of course, are most visible in our art and our writing. Our magazine is organized by color, and each color represents a different topic. Green represents nature, yellow represents happiness, red represents love, blue represents contemplation, and purple represents imagination and hope. We have tried to include a range of ideas and subjects, artistic styles, and opinions, and the magazine you are holding most definitely reflects the middle school. Thank you for your submissions and your support! The Staff of WE Magazine

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Front cover illustration- Spying on Life by Tori (pencil sketch with digitally-added color). Front and back cover design by Kai (Kylie).

Cheer

Friendship

Mrs. Van Gogh Trims the Flower Bouquet by Elizabeth (inspired by Van Gogh’s Vase with Daisies and Anemones, 1887)

gazelle
Before I was me I was a gazelle. I was always surrounded by my herd who loved and cared for one another. I would skip, and hop, and sing my joyful and silent gazelle song. There were always cheetahs and lions around, ready to strike. All gazelles could go where they like, As long as they stayed near the herd. But when the herd was attacked by a cheetah, Two of my favorite elder gazelles had died. After that I was extremely sad. I would not skip. I would not hop. My gazelle song was sad and lonely. A day later our herd was attacked by lions. The rest of the herd was all grouped together, except me. But I was small and an easy target, I was surrounded by the lions. They were closing in on me. It began to rain, As if the sun could not bear to watch. I then saw myself in a puddle of rainwater. I looked awful, and not myself. Tears were soaking up my face, And my heart felt like it was sinking into a dark hole. Only one spark was lighting that abyss, And it was happiness. I then remembered who I am, And I saw the sun filter down from the clouds. I sang a happy song as I skipped in the only space left. A lion pounced, but I did not even fear. I gave a great leap over the lions. My song was so happy, And so optimistic that it scared the lions away. Now whenever I am in doubt and sorrow, I search myself to find courage, And the cheerfulness that has always been there for me. Cast of Characters: Bill – Trouble Maker, Funny, Amiable Mr. Glair – Strict, Bossy, Skeptical Principal Peters – Amiable, Gullible

excuse
As the curtain rises, Bill is sitting in a classroom at his desk. Mr. Glair is checking for homework. Bill has not done it, and is therefore looking quite nervous and guilty. Cacti is written on the board. Mr. Glair: Now everyone, please take out your essay on the Average Life of a Cactus. When Mr. Glair sees the nervous look on Bill’s face, he asks him to read the first paragraph of his essay. Mr. Glair: Bill, why don’t you read the first paragraph of your essay? Bill: Ahh, Mr. Glair, my best pal, my favorite teacher, my mentor, the one that always helps me when I… Mr. Glair: (looking irritated). – You don’t have it, do you? Bill: Ahh, the word "don’t," that’s one of my favorite words, such rich meaning. I mean, I wish I had thought of combining the words "do" and "not." I mean, SUCH COMPLEXITY. As for my homework, I think "don’t" is a little strong for my homework. Mr. Glair: COME SEE ME, NOW! (Mr. Glair shouts.) Bill: Why certainly, Mr. Glair, and did I mention your tie looks spiffy today? Mr. Glair: I’m NOT WEARING A TIE!! (shouting and looking very angry) Bill: Well if you were, it would be spiffy. (smiling) Bill gets out of his seat and turns to face Mr. Glair. Mr. Glair has his back to the door.

—Katie

4

es, excuses: a one-act play
Mr. Glair: You think I am stupid enough to believe that? Bill: I believe the question you asked me is why I don’t Maybe our stupid mess of a principal would believe that, have my homework. This is a very simple question, yet it but not me! does not have a simple answer. In fact, it has a quite com- Principal Peters – stands up, looking shocked - Mr. Glair, plex answer that I am sure you will find fascinating. what did you just say about me? Mr. Glair: P-P-P-P-Principal Peters. I didn’t know you At this point Principal Peters walks in the classroom carrying a clip- were here. See, I was just comparing you to Einstein… board. Since Mr. Glair’s back is turned, he does not see the principal Yeah, Einstein. Principal Peters- You know, I think that a little respect walk in. The principal takes a seat directly behind Mr. Glair. might go a long way. But you lost your chance. If you don’t get out of this classroom in the next five seconds… Bill: You see, Mr. Glair, I was outside enjoying the day and was taking a walk. I stepped in a puddle. I thought it Mr. Glair: No, Please give me one more chance!! was just water, but it turned out to be acid rain (when he says this, Principal Peters looks horrified) . The acid burned a Principal Peters: Five… hole in my shoes, so then I had to go out and buy some new shoes. (he takes his shoes off and holds them up. Principal Pe- Mr. Glair: (down on his knees) I’m SORRY! ters gives him the thumbs up sign) Principal Peters: Four, three, two, one, SCRAM. Now Bill, I completely believe your story; you must have gone Bill: I finally thought I could do my homework. But then, through so much. You are excused from all homework We came home and found out our house had been robbed this week. of all the milk. My parents started freaking out because tonight was apparently their annual cereal party. ApparMr. Glair: What?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ently they invite every single living person that they know over so that they can all "experience" new cereals. It's a Principal Peters: GET OUT! (Leads Mr. Glair away and out of total waste of time, but my parents are crazy. So they dragged me to the store to get milk. But they were out of room) milk, which really ticked me off because the commercials say (starts singing a jingle) “Supermarket, The place that has Bill: Sweet, No HOMEWORK! EVERYTHING!” Well, guess what?? THEY DON’T —Sam, Thomas, and Robert STINK’N HAVE EVERYING! (at this Principal Peters puts his head in his hands and sobs silently.) But fortunately, the next store had some. Bill: I finally thought that I could get my homework done. But right as I was about to start, my mom called me downstairs and asked me to try this new kind of cereal. Well, apparently I’m REALLY allergic to something in the cereal, so I started gagging. I was rushed to the hospital, put under sleeping pills, and didn’t wake up until this morning. Fortunately, I was fine and able to go to school. But I had such a horrible day yesterday; I just couldn’t fit in my homework. I’m sure you understand.

5

french fries
Inspired by Kyle
I was eleven, in the seventh grade, and having the worst time of my life. We were going bowling mp iss. Ceramic la Swiss M as a seventh grade. aniella created by D I was so excited, as we drove to the alley. We listened to G105, with Kiran and Mel singing in the back of the bus. When we arrived, I met up with my best friends. We had signed up to bowl together, and were ready for the greatest time of seventh grade. After each gutter ball we would high five and go absolutely crazy, not caring our friend had failed miserably (Maybe because of the fries that we were worshiping after every ball) After that day I realized it was one of my happiest moments. On that day I was just like a little kid again, all of my fears whisked away. For two hours of my life. (Maybe because of the fries)
—Kevin

the white house paint is peeling.
The gardener came to tell me today “I bring bad news,” he warned me, “The tourists have just come and seen Now, please, sir, come and see yourself…” The White House paint is peeling It was true, I did admit The gardener had said what was true I felt embarrassed, I confess And I hate feeling blue… The White House paint is peeling The Cabinet met at once To discuss the budget and dues I need help, I must confess I don’t know what to do… The White House paint is peeling Oh, the disgrace, oh, the disgrace If the newspapers found out I’d never live it down, And my people would be filled with doubt… The White House paint is peeling And yet because we paid off debt, Our budget is stretched thin There’s no way to end this mess There is no way to win… The White House paint is peeling So in the end we did conclude The best thing we could do Is go into debt to buy the paint Without further ado… The White House paint is peeling “Mr. President, be careful,” I was cautioned on all sides “If we borrow more than this, A disaster will arise…” The White House paint is peeling You see, we had just paid off our debt I’m writing my speech, or I should be; I’m planning what to say The people will be mad, you see It will not be a very good day… The White House paint is peeling It really is necessary to paint the White House, too The scars are showing now, from the fire long ago I’m sure they look just hideous Nobody will be glad to know… The White House paint is peeling And as the President, I’m blamed Which really isn’t fair I do keep up with the White House I really do care… The White House paint is peeling I suppose that sleep will help, And that is what I’m hoping. So, to write my speech is what I must do, In order to stop the moping… The White House paint is peeling

—Katie

Tiger Lillies. Digital Photograph by Rachel

we roll as one
We roll as one We rock the sound We dance to the rhythm like an ongoing song We listen to the waves Of our foot tapping beat We roll as two We rock the music We dance to the sound of a spinning DJ We listen to the motion Of our foot tapping beat We roll as three We rock the voices We dance to the pulse of a music-filled heart We listen to the feeling Of our foot tapping beat We roll all together We rock, dance, and listen To the waves, to the motion, to the pulse, to the feeling Of our foot tapping beat -Shay

8

L’été Coloré, chaud, camping L’eau claire de l’océan crie à moi. Coquillage, coucher du soleil, pique-niques L’été Summer Colorful, hot, camping The clear water of the ocean calls out to me. Seashells, sunsets, picnics Summer
—Laura, Kai (Kylie),

and Sydney

mes, As morning co of my window. et lies outside g works of art. A white blank nnin sform into stu It waits to tran s and icicles surround me, Snow angle lver necklaces. as glistening si As beautiful late akes hot choco My mother m tment. e pure enchan That tastes lik d the flavor The warmth an ind with joy. and m Fills my mouth is moment forever. r th I want to savo y friends I run to join m a snowman. To help create n, zle like the su Our smiles daz snow surprise. yable What an enjo —Caroline

Flurries Breathtaking

Full Sail. Digital Ph

otograph by Shanno n

L’hiver cé, blanc, aux chandelles Gla Les fées blanches m’entourent. nes Jour férié, chocolat chaud, châtaig L’hiver Winter Freezing, white, candlelit White fairies surround me. Holidays, hot chocolate, chestnuts

10

—Laura, Kylie (Kai),

and Sydney

mama mia!
The teeth increase the surface area of the food To keep its mixture with the digestive chemicals in a good mood. The salivary gland Is definitely not bland! It contains saliva, Which has so many functions it’s practically aliva! Mucin, anti-bacterial agents, and protecting agents are all part of the deal, But the salivary amylase also has quite an appeal! The Pharynx is commonly known as the throat – If I had the chance, it is that which I would kindly promote The epiglottis is a flap That prevents a windpipe mishap Between the pharynx and the stomach, the esophagus is placed Through this, peristalsis makes the food race Part of what makes the stomach fantastic Is the fact that it is pretty elastic Although the stomach has mucous, Hydrochloric acid and pepsin are some of the stomach’s gastric juices One of the stomach’s infamous crimes Is back flowing, into the esophagus, acid chyme. I will tell you about the small intestine Because sometimes it tends to raise a few questions Bile and enzymes are secreted by the pancreas and liver, Because of this, I’d say it’s not such a giver. After breaking down the nutrients as best as they can It is given to the blood stream secondhand The villi and microvilli do have a purpose They increase the area of the surface The Duodenum makes up the first section Which uses so many chemicals, many would consider it perfection. The large intestine is not a joke Because of its lack of oxygen, the Magic School Bus Kids should have choked As a collection, Wastes are gathered from digestion. To the rectum and anus it is then transferred, Though thinking about it is not preferred. Infections result in diarrhea, Which causes many to cry, ―Mama Mia!‖ When too much water is absorbed and the feces’ departure is put on probation This, my friend, is called constipation.

11

— Emily

satisfying the senses
We hear the sound of peaceful waves climbing up the sizzling sand. We catch the sight of the wind lifting the colorful kites across the never-ending blue sky. We feel the sea shells crackling and crunching beneath the touch of our feet. We taste the salty mist of the refreshing water drizzling on our sun-burnt lips. We smell the fisherman’s bait as they cast their rods far from shore, hoping for tonight’s fishy dinner. We sit on the crumpled sandy towel and gaze at our magnificent surroundings. The ocean, What’s not to love? —Gabrielle

Mr. Monet Hang Glides by Marion (inspired by Claude Monet’s Woman with a Parasol—Madame Monet and Her Son, 1875)

what is light?
What is light? Light is something that shines in the sun, the stars and anything It is heat that shows through your skin in anger and embarrassment Light is something that is any color Some people see it as red, I see it as gold What is light? Light can be good or bad Light is the blazing hot doughnuts that you eat on a Sunday morning The cold ice cream that you eat on a summer day The creamy sunscreen that you put on your burning skin What is light? Light can be the reason you go to church Or something that shines in your eyes Even a long walk through a deserted alleyway Or the words you learn in language arts class What is light? Light is the Devil with his steaming pitch fork God with his glowing heart Love that shines through us Light is poetry —Rachel

Saddlebrook Sunset Digital Photograph by Anastasia

tree
Outside my window there’s a tree I feel that it shows its green leaves just for me The rough bark Looks stiff and stark Next to delicate flowers I used to spend hours Under that tree That I felt showed its leaves just for me I fear My dear
Versailles Gardens. Digital Photograph by Lydia.

That years have been lost At a great cost That I haven’t spent under that tree That used to show its leaves just for me —Isabelle

Section cover goes here!!

Love

minus life never.
The class was working on subtraction, And the teacher said: “„2 – 1 = 1‟” So the little girl asked the teacher, “What does minus mean?” And the teacher said: “‟Minus‟ means to take away” The little girl thought about it for awhile. And looked to the back of the class, And smiled, Then put it out of her mind. The class was talking about the life of a moth, And the teacher said: “The life of a moth is very short” So the little girl asked the teacher, “What does life mean?” And the teacher said: “Life is how long you are living and breathing” The little girl thought about it for awhile, And looked to the back of the class, And smiled, Then put it out of her mind. The class was talking about spelling, And the teacher said: “Never is spelt n-e-v-e-r” So the little girl asked the teacher, “What does never mean?” And the teacher said: “Never means not for eternity” The little girl thought about it for awhile, And looked to the back of the class, And smiled, Then put it out of her mind. On the walk home from school, The little girl ran to catch up with the little boy. The little boy that sat at the back of the class, She told the boy: “I learned a lot today… what did you learn?” And the little boy said: “I learned about the life of a moth, And how to spell never, And how to minus one thing from another.” Then he asked the little girl:
Pencil sketch by To ri

“What did you learn today?” And the little girl said, “I learned that I never want to minus you from my life.” Then she looked at him and smiled And skipped all the way home.

—Erin

15

Home to You at Last: Le
, Dear Marianne y. We ment of the da t you every mo chased I think abou but are being en combat yet, oss into have not se e about to cr creation! We'r s like I've all over ania. It seem ny of Pennsylv 5 weeks. Many the colo ars instead of em at away for 5 ye been waiting for th re have women e strength to of the men he at gives us th though me. That is wh ho er cold, even rough the bitt l Washingmarch on th shoes. Genera us don't have the troops many of the morale of ck trying to keep wish I was ba ton is despondent. I , but we are have more high n't I'm sorry I do breakhome with you. st go to have but I mu me. me to write, r ti fo o to everyone fast. Say hell nate husband, Your affectio James

An original story by Nic

My dear brother,

t to be go Oh how I miss you! I try my bes nne and truthfully say that I believe Maria right, a friends. Mother is fine, but you are for her French and Indian War, it is hard for. I p remind her of what you are fighting safely as soon as possible. All my love, Georgiana

My darling

Dear Mother and Georgiana,

I am so pro reassurance t I miss you as well. You have no idea ho long for you to come w much joy receiving dear. Did y home, but am trying your letter brough to accept that it is have been taking on t me. I fifteen years o your duty to fight more for our freedom. I to the livestock them duties at home, too. With you gone, ma ny of the women he selves, water and we re have had to tend well? I do w ed been kept busy sewi ng shirts for the ma the garden, and continue upkeep at the ny soldiers that pass farm. I have also I don't kno extra food, but I do here each day. We give what I can. gether a joy t don’t have a lot of I moved in with your mother and sister. gone off to fig much I miss you. I It is nice to be with am glad that you ha people who understa ve not seen combat even put that though nd how yet. It scares me to t into writing. Your think...oh I shouldn't sister and mother se the day the colonie Your dotin nd s will gain their fr eedom and you can re their love and best wishes. I long for turn home to me. Until then, I remain Mother your loving wife, Marianne
My dear family,

Dearest James,

I hope this letter finds you well. I cannot thank you enough for letting Marianne live with you until I return. Mother, keep your spirits up and remember what we are fighting for: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, which is how a Mr. Jefferson of Virginia so eloquently states our goals. I know you must be going through a hard time, remembering Father, but this is what I must do. I will always love you. Georgiana, listen to Mother and be nice to Marianne. She admires you so much. Remember to wear your apron when you write because the last thing Mother needs is another one of your dresses to be ruined. Be strong and remember that your brother loves you. May I always remain your devoted son and brother, James

A joyous Christmas this is indeed! we crossed the river in boats and by surprise. We burst into their h evidently partaken of too much dri fore. They surrendered, so now, in oners, we have food and supplies. for our troops and everyone is ver mander Washington. Perhaps I will soon. God Bless, James

etters of the American Revolution
My dear Mari anne, Just a brief note before terday, Comm we march off. ander Washin Yesgton read Th newest articl omas Paine's e, The Crisis , to us. It inspiring. On was truly e line in pa rticular stuc head: “Heave k out in my n knows how to put a prop its goods; an er price upon d it would be celestial an strange inde ed if so article as FR EEDOM should highly rated. not be ” It reminds me that in th times, any pr ese hard ice is worth paying to ga for ourselve in freedom s and our ch ildren. The Hessians , the German camped across soldiers, ar e the river. We can already beginning to hear them party and dr ink. This ma their downfa y prove to be ll. General Washington pl the river la ans to cross te tonight an d attack them are all stil while they l asleep and intoxicated. it will lead He is hoping to surrender. I wish you a Christmas an happy d wish I was home with yo brate the Ch u to celerist child's birth.

cole, Maryam, and Maggie

ood and obedient and can d I will become the best of after losing Father in the to let you go. I try to pray that you return to us

g boy,

oud of what you are doing. It gives me immense joy to hear from you and to get that you are well. Georgiana is behaving wonderfully and Marianne really is a you know that the Hamilton boys have joined up even though they are not yet old? I greatly admire their mother for giving them up to the cause. Are you wish I could see you, if only for a day, and give you some of my home cooking. ow what I would do without Marianne. She is so helpful and polite and altoYour loving husband, to be around. I have many chores, now that most of the men in the town have James ght, so I must go now. My darling James,

g,,

Christmas Eve and your mother y that you are safe tonight. It is I hope and pra her one so admire her and hope to be like t planned a small feast for us. I do has us, making toasts to the independen next year, you will be home with day. Mayhap mas. t I hope they have a happy Christ onies. Please tell your friends tha col May God bring you home to me saf Marianne My dear M arianne, I was wou nded a li ttle whil because I e back. D am fine n on't worr ow, but I y the use o will neve f my righ r recover t hand. M tially bl y fingers own off b were pary gunfire to amputa and the d te the re octor had st. I am your husb sorry for and is mi you that ssing fou a sacrifi r fingers ce I am h , but it appy to m is my countr ake for t y. As I c he sake o an no lon f they are ger hold sending m a musket, e home. I you in a will be b few days. ack with We must t ways by h ry to fin elping ou d other r country for now, win this I'm comin war, but g home to All my lo you at la ve, st. James ely,

! Christmas night, took the Hessians huts and they had ink the night ben addition to prisThe morale is high ry proud of Combe home with you

17

never forever
I stood by my locker Slowly, automatically, Shoving my binder into its depths With the repetition of the daily routine A strange feeling washes over me, And I look up Too see you Standing there in the hallway Our eyes meet And I know what's wrong. You dash towards me, Your eyes filled with tears Streaming down your face like silver drops on a window pane Your head in your hands, You sprint into my arms Sobbing and murmuring. The world seems frozen As you thrust your arms around me Leaning and shaking with your cries The air seems so cold As my arms wrap around you Embracing you Protecting you. Your head lies on my shoulder Tears falling onto the tiles Mixing with mine in a small puddle Where we stand. I knew it, I always knew it I knew it wouldn't last. I knew he would leave you I knew it couldn't last Forever.

Convers

e. Graph

ic art by

Kylie

Convers

e. Graph

ic art by

Kylie Ma rs

h

—Katherina

My D

n aph by An l Photogr og. Digita

a boy’s true best friend
It was the beginning 5th grade when my Mom brought him home. A mist was coming down from the grey and depressing sky as I ran down the sidewalk to the carpool line. It had been a long day at school. I had been watching the clock since 2:00, eager to greet my new friend. Finally, I went to my car and opened the door. There he was. Lying in the back seat shivering from the cold was a dog. A black lab, to be exact. He had a big nose, small paws, and wide, friendly eyes. He was tiny; all four of his feet could have probably fit in my palm. He couldn‟t get settled in the car and was glad when we finally made it home. I hadn‟t had a dog since my old dog, Winston, had died. He passed away at age nine because he had cancer. I was very sad, but was eager to get a new dog. It had been two years, and I was ready for a new dog. We had had the hardest time trying to name my new dog. Finally, we came up with a name that everyone agreed on. Since the Carolina Hurricanes had just won the Stanley Cup, we decided to name him Stanley The most prominent thing about him was his head, especially the eyes. They were curious and friendly, inviting me to play. He was stocky, but not fat, and very quick on his feet. He wore a silly grin on his face, and always looked as though he had just drunk a Red Bull®. I think I took about 100 pictures that first day. The best one was of him running around, tail a blur, cross-eyed, with his new toy, a soft duck. He loved to get up in my lap and shove that thing right on whatever I happened to be wearing. Usually, when I got done playing with him, there would be a wet spot about as big as a silver dollar on the place where he had attacked me. Stanley was a rambunctious dog. Every minute, he was getting into trouble. Whether it was stealing my socks or begging for table scraps, he was always up to something. Perhaps the funniest thing he did was chew on the wall. Yes, he actually chewed on the wall in our kitchen. I don‟t know how he did it, but we came downstairs one afternoon to find teeth marks on the wall. He also chewed up cabinets, boxers, shoes, shoelaces, rocks, soccer balls, footballs, tennis balls, and the plants in our backyard (which happen to be poisonous to dogs.) That should have taught him to stop chewing on everything in eyeshot, but of course it didn‟t. One time, he even got two pairs of my babysitter‟s underwear in his mouth when she came to do her laundry and ran around with it! Stanley loved his toys. His all-time favorite was his furry hot dog. It was a squeaky toy. When I threw it, He would leap, bound, and slide his way along the kitchen floor, falling at least twice before getting to the soft plastic toy covered in a thick layer of saliva. He would then trot back and lay it at my feet, expecting me to put my hand in that goo and throw it again. Sometimes, when I would throw it, he would slip and go flying across the slick floor at full speed until he crashed into a cabinet. He would then get up and try to find the ball, acting as though nothing had happened. He also loved his blanket, which was a dirty towel with rips in the edges that he carried around in his mouth. He would bring it to me, laying it at my feet while I was watching TV, looking at me with those expectant eyes and silly grin that made me want to play. Somehow, he would convince me to get down on the floor and play tug-of-war, running in circles until I finally had to give up. Outside, he loved sports. Soccer was his favorite. I would kick the ball and try to get it past him, and he would jump on the ball so I couldn‟t. Then I let some air out of the ball so he could pick it up. He would steal it from me and sprint away, looking back with expectant eyes, wanting me to chase him. Sometimes, I would chase him for 20 minutes at a time, diving all over the ground, trying to catch the flying fur ball that was going 50 mph on the ground. He also loved football, but he had to play defense. When I had friends over, he would actually tackle them. He would jump in the air at full speed and crash into them. He would then stand on their chests and lovingly slobber all over their faces and clothes. Stanley really helped me get over the loss of my other dog Winston. My family had had Winston since I was a baby. Winston was a good dog, but somehow I think Stanley is better. He and I are growing up together, and so we have a bond Winston and I never had. I think that Stanley is everything you could ask for in a dog, and a little more, which makes him a true man‟s best friend.

ne.

—Sam

heartbreak drenched
The tension builds Little fires grazing the grass Until we start dancing faster and faster. Our little game called love. Fires burn everything around us, And you look me in the eyes. Feel the passion. Our little game called love. The rains come and just As you think we‟re thriving, The wetness drenches Our little game called love.

song lyrics written for guitar
The sound of the waves crashing Drowns out your hate, lashing out At your fate. You're standing here weeping, Just the sun knows your secret and she's Asleep. Those ten holes in the sand, Fill with your tears. The heals of your footprints are as Deep as your fears That the tide will Never change. Gentle spray kisses away your heartbreak. The ocean breeze frees you from your heartbreak. Looks like you're moving on from your heartbreak. The seagulls are diving, and Your sad eyes are drying outYou're sighing. Your tears mix with the ocean, but the Salt water won't begin to change it; This only mattered for you. Looking down, you've found the world collapsing; The tide keeps stealing the ground away. Looking up, the heavens are bleeding, But look at you- you're doing okay. Gentle spray kisses away your heartbreak. The ocean breeze frees you from your heartbreak. Looks like you're moving on from your heartbreak.
—Katie

—Anastasia

raph taken by Cam eak. Digital Photog Daybr

i

20

Hope

Violet Iris. Digital Photograph by Cami

Dreams
Imagination

somewhere
Somewhere over in another place, there are people who do different things. There are people who side-step when they walk, there are people who shiver when it’s warm. There are people who put their windows next to their stairs; there are people who glow when they are outside. There are people who put on shorts in 20 degrees, there are people who tip-toe when they are trying to be noticed. There are people who drink their chocolate ice cream with a straw, even people who drink their water from a plate. People who buy clothes with large blue circles pasted on the sides. People who crawl down the stairs, and wear wings when it is windy, People who go bananas over seeing a mechanical pencil, People who eat strawberries as ripe as a tart, People who run outside in the dark shadow of the day, People who grill salads until they become as brown as chocolate, Even people who think the slow, whispering wind is their best friend calling them from a phone. Somewhere in this far away place, somewhere where these people live, something is different. They have different rules, different practices, and different ideas. But everywhere this is true; in this place it is only obvious. So if you ever want to visit this place, it is not very hard, Because it is called your imagination, and it is something everyone has inside them.

—Ivana

i once was
I once was a bead of water, Sitting peacefully in the sea. Then suddenly the sun shown bright, I quickly passed up through the trees I didn’t know where I was going, But I knew I was going up above. While I was happy to see the world around me, I missed the droplet that I loved. I once was a raindrop, Living peacefully in a cloud. Then suddenly the wind blew hard, And as I fell, I bowed. I was now slowly declining, From my high up, quiet haven. I looked everywhere as I fell, I even saw a raven.

I once was a snowflake, Lying peacefully on the ground. Then suddenly, down came a foot, Running; homeward bound. I now am a child, Existing peacefully in a home. I live a life so wonderful, There is nowhere for me to roam.

—Sami

Musical Dreams. Guitar painted by Katie

Those days of August, humid, dry, and long, seemed destined to have more excitement than the constant confusion and curiosity of living in a new place. However unaccustomed I was to cobblestone streets, buildings in shades of cream and red that seemed to squat, low and fat, on the streets, and piazzas encrusted with pigeons, the time was too slow. Italy, as far as I was concerned, held only one prospect of joy: My Dog. The burning sun of Tuscany was unfamiliar and I longed for the polluted, foggy skies of home. Yet, that single beacon, visible just ahead past Gelateria Veneta, the Hotel Rex, and the train station, satisfied my hopes of happiness. My Dog, which was the name he became known by, was out there, waiting for me to come and take him home. Maybe he was a golden retriever, maybe a terrier. It didn’t matter. The only thing I cared about was that soon, I’d be taking home a puppy who would become my best friend, our companionship reminiscent of Arthur and Pal in the favorite books of my younger days. I was impatient to get My Dog; I had always wanted the long-missed puppy that I would carry around everywhere: a dog that would sleep in my room, at the foot of my bed, and be the best thing that could ever have happened to me, just like in books and movies. Fate nearly granted my wish just a few days after we moved into Sandy’s villa in Pieve di Compito. The stuffy apartment that my family and I had rented for our first Italian month had been deserted for the next group of tourists wishing to stay in the heart of the vivacious town, and we moved into the white house. Though it gave the implication of a shady hideaway from the outside, on the inside the air was milk-curdling and the light filtered into nothing but steamed shadows. “Hey, Ted? Today we’re going to go look for a dog, okay? There’s a pound that has some puppies ready to move into their permanent home.” “Really? Let’s go!” I replied to my father. “Okay, but, these puppies may not be right for us, and we may not get a dog there.” “Uh huh. Can we go now?” This was the work of fate that I had been waiting for, though I imagine I would have believed more in the readiness of my parents than the willingness of fate. We left in the white rental car with the coarse seats. I couldn’t stop talking and inquiring, of course, when we’d arrive at the pound. We finally approached a building announced by the constant barking of dogs. There, we were greeted by the owner, a woman whose features do not stand out to me today. She took my father and me into a small room with a British couple who was also interested in getting a dog. After we had waited for some time, she brought in three small boxers, all of whom ran around jumping up our legs and barking. I was surprised. I never thought about an energetic Boxer; the image of a Labrador lapdog (which was an unrecognized oxymoron at the time) was seared into my mind. But I wanted a dog badly enough to agree that these dogs seemed great. At the very last minute, when my dad finally asked me if I was sure that I wanted one of these boxers, I said no. He told me we’d find another, better dog, and then cheered me by explaining that we probably wouldn’t have been able to keep one of these dogs anyways. “Imagine what Charlotte would say,” Dad mentioned, commenting on my younger sister’s fear of large and noisy dogs. “Yes. We’ll have to find a quiet dog. But I would be fine with those dogs. Big dogs don’t scare me.” I don’t think I quite enjoyed saying that when we walked out of the pound. The owner, after we had told her that we’d think about the dogs, had decided to take us out the long way, through the cages of the grown dogs, in hopes that we’d like one of those animals. They were large and not frightened of us at all. Instead they barked loudly and I, contrary to my earlier declaration, grabbed my father’s hand and nearly pulled him out of the pound, all the while managing to hide behind him. The real work of fate occurred when my whole family drove into Lucca, the town of which, had it been a bountiful metropolis, Pieve di Compito would have been a suburb of. It was not a bountiful metropolis,

i am Arthur, he is Pal: a memoir

23

however. It was a small, yet elegant and beautiful town, with life around every street corner. The weekend marketplace was set up in an open concrete expanse where western-European and African men verbally advertised their miscellaneous wares. The foreign women, wearing everything they owned, sold textiles. As my family and I shifted through the ravines of Italian shoppers, perhaps examining animated purple cloth or a black umbrella, we arrived at the small plot of concrete set aside for dogs. A tall, ginger-haired lady with a limp ponytail and a long nose protruding over her wide mouth stood above several laundry baskets holding puppies. The little dogs were yipping to each other vigorously, nearly overturning their baskets, or sitting almost sullenly in their plastic cages, their eyes shifting back and forth in nervousness. This was the state of the little black dog in his blue basket. This was the state of My Dog. I knew it immediately. It was him. Everything about him, from his emerald eyes, to his soft and silky black fur, to his oversized ears was perfect. It was him. It was My Dog. He was sitting on the white towel that was his basket’s rug. It had been, however, stained with small yellow puddles. He was definitely nervous. Really nervous. I knew it was him the minute I saw him, but Mom, Dad, and Charlotte weren’t as convinced. “He’ll be big,” said my father. “See his ears? When a dog’s ears are big, it means the dog will to be big, too.” “I don’t like big dogs,” said Charlotte. “You’re just scared of them and if you get one, you’ll like them.” I said. “No I’m not and now I like this dog- I just had to get used to him.” I normally would have mentioned that the only reason she had “gotten used” to My Dog was because she didn’t want to admit she was scared, but I didn’t really think that would sell the dog any better. “Yeah! Can we get him?” “I don’t know. We didn’t want a big dog, remember?” Mom said, trying to discourage us from hoping that we’d be able to get him. “I know we didn’t,” I replied, “Now we do.” “We’ll see,” Mom said. At that moment I thought of Arthur Gets a Dog. I’m a bit embarrassed to say that I didn’t think of Arthur actually getting the dog. Instead, I zoomed in on D.W.’s response to a “we’ll see”. It goes something like “That means no!” As my parents were talking a few steps away, I inspected the dog again. I knew it. He was My Dog. His little eyes seemed to peer up at me, and for the briefest second, the nervousness disappeared and I could have sworn I saw a twinkling smile through those cute emerald orbs. “What’re you going to name him?” Charlotte asked. “I don’t know.” “What about Pal?” “No, not Pal. I like Esmeralda because he has green eyes!” So he, yes, he, became Esmeralda. Just as my father was walking back, a pair of dachshunds ran over, yipping and squealing. Charlotte pulled back, but I let the sausage-dogs lick me. “Make them go away, Daddy,” she said. “I’m only used to our dog, other dogs I’m scared of.” “We don’t know if he’s our dog, yet, Charlotte,” Dad replied. “Yes we do. Ted even has a name, Esmeralda.” “Well, Esmeralda may be a bit too big. You know how to say that in Italian? You say troppo grande.” Hearing this, the ginger-haired owner came over and said “Non grande, medio. Sara medio, medio, medio, non grande, medio!” “She says he’ll be a medium-sized dog.” “Yay! Then we can get him!” “We’ll see.” Digital photograph by Ted Waechter

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This time, instead of D.W., it was my sister. “That means no.” That, in fact, meant yes, because Mom and Dad decided we could keep him. I carried him away, panting under the weight of his heavy body. After we had walked what seemed like a long time, we arrived at our parked car. Dad took the basket and, as if on cue, a yellow liquid trickled off the basket and onto Dad’s shirt! I could not stop laughing. We dropped Esmeralda off for his first shots and returned to the villa. NO DOGS INSIDE. That’s when I remembered: he was an outdoor dog. So I swept out the dusty garage for him in my bare feet and I waited for him in the driveway. As I sat, I decided that the name Esmeralda was a bit too girly for my dog. So I asked my dad if I could change it. “Sure,” he said. We went through a list of names: Pal, Puccini, My Dog, Chester, and finally arrived at Charcoal, in Italian carbone. So that is what we named him: Carbone, for his pitch black fur. When he came home, tiny compared to his giant surroundings, and tiny compared to his size today (medio, yeah right!), I greeted him. “Ciao, Carbone!” Those words were the red flag that signaled the bull of friendship, love, and happiness. They were the permit that licensed the building of companionship, joy, and barking. They were the beginning of rolling around in the grass, being licked by a ticklish tongue, and, of course, having my very own Pal, just like in the movies.

—Ted

a penguin
Before I was a child, I was a penguin. I was all alone, and I was cold. Snow was falling dow n and the ice on the grou nd was getting thicke I wiggled my feathers r. to shake the snow of f of me. It did little for my pr esent state. It was too cold to just stand there. So I went searching fo r food. Diving into the water I gulped down the bi ggest, fattest fish I co uld find, sadly, it was not that big. But it would do for no w. The blizzard was gett ing stronger, and I w as getting colder. I curled into myself, trying with all my m ight to keep warm, shaking off more of th e snow that kept falli ng on me. I wandered on more, until I saw a big blac k and white dot up ah ead. I waddled over to it as fast as I could. Right now, any hope at all was worth goin g for. As I got to it I realized that it was a pack of penguins-just like me! I curled into them an d dug deeper into the pack. They accepted me, an d I accepted them. We were family, and we were warm.

—Laura

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the towers in the sky
The two white towers in the sky Reach up and strive As if to imitate the trees, Blooming below. Though white with the color of winter They blaze with the power of Rebirth And renewal. The robins dart among the green spires below While unearthly images and dreams Dance about the blank slate Of the counterparts in the sky. And when I turn around They are gone, Replaced by the fresh blue of a robin’s egg And I know that someone else Can see them now.

—Adrienne

Sacre Couer, Paris, France. Digital Photograph by Lydia.

“Audrey!” yelled her coach, leaning into the girls' locker room. “Hurry up and get the water jug to the field! The boys are thirsty!” “Ok, Coach!” Audrey sighed and threw her shin guards in her bag as her soccer coach slammed the heavy locker room door shut. It was a little disturbing how freely her coach let himself into the locker room, as if it were the boys' locker room. As she shouldered her bag, she lamented how she was becoming more like a team manager than a player on the school team. Audrey crossed the hallway of the gymnasium to the trainer’s room, glancing at the workout posters on the wall, and picked up a large orange jug with “Gatorade” emblazoned on the front. She hefted the jug and staggered under its weight. Hunch-backed with the effort, she trundled through the door, only to walk straight into something very large, which she gently bounced off of. She staggered backwards and dropped the container, which wobbled before righting itself on the floor. She found herself being glared down at by the school trainer, Mr. Calsinki. “Watch where you're going, missy! AND WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’RE DOING?” the large man demanded angrily, in his haughty voice. “Sorry, I was just getting a water jug for my soccer te…” Her voice trailed off under his wilting stare. “Not that, you ignorant girl! Those cleats!” Audrey looked down and realized she had her cleats on. “Oh, I'm so sorry Mr. Calsinki, I’ll take them off.” She bent down, face red and hands sweaty, and started to fumble with her laces. “Do you have any idea how much these tile floors cost to maintain?” he insisted as she took off the cleats. “How could they let such a clueless girl onto the school's soccer team?” he asked--more to himself, than to her. Audrey’s face burned, and her heart stung, but she held her tongue, placed her cleats on the jug and sideshuffled away. As she entered the hallway, she passed an older boy wearing metal cleats, the clacking noise of his footsteps echoing through the halls. “Oh, he’s gonna get it!” she thought viciously, waiting for the outburst of yelling that was sure to come. Instead, however, she heard a different tone floating down the hallway: “Come on in, John. Have some Gatorade. You really had a great play against St. George's in the game yesterday.” “Thank you, Mr. Calsinki. I think I will,” came the voice of the boy. Audrey started hauling the jug along ferociously with the energy of the burning injustice. She pushed past the few people roaming the halls with unnecessary violence and burst out the double doors toward the soccer field, positive that her hair was going to frizz up because of the steam that was sure to be coming out of her ears. She stomped her way past a row of pine trees to the field, where the boys were just starting their "1,2,3 GO TIGERS!" chant, slammed the jug down on the bench, marched to the far side of the field, and plopped down on the other bench. Audrey stared sadly at her cleats that she had bought last summer back when she lived in Charleston. She had had to move here, a small, gloomy town called Pikesville, in Tennessee. Pikesville was so small that her school only had a boys' soccer team, which Audrey was now forced to play on. Actually, she wasn't quite forced to play on it, because she definitely wanted to play soccer, but she was forced because otherwise she wouldn't be able to play soccer at all. Her grandfather had taught her how to play when she was three, and it had been her passion ever since. He had played on the team for Argentina when he was in his 20's, but he had died three years ago. Audrey wanted to make him proud. In one of his final days, he had told her, "I hope you'll always think of me when you play soccer, Audrey." "AUDREY!" Audrey resurfaced to the present. "AUDREY, PUT THOSE CLEATS ON AND WATCH THE GAME! THE BOYS ARE STARTING TO PLAY!" the coach yelled at her furiously from across the field. Audrey frantically scrambled to knot her laces, and looked up, just as the ref blew his whistle to start the game. "Way to go, Audrey," smirked Ryan as he took off after the ball. Audrey's blood boiled. I hate how all the

sporting strength

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guys treat me-- like I'm stupid-- and won't pass to me. I've never even gotten to play in a real game. I'm just as good at soccer as any of them, anyway. It’s just because I'm a girl. And girls are weaker and delicate. She had heard the guys on her team grumble about this before, plenty of times. Audrey looked up and started to watch the game intently, studying every move of every player. Jack was passing the ball to Mark. One of the defenders from the Strikers was charging at Mark’s back like a linebacker. Audrey knew exactly what was coming, but by the time she shouted, “Look out, Mark!” it was too late. Mark had been body checked by the Strikers' defender before the ball had even gotten to his feet. Audrey stared at the ground. She couldn’t watch Coach carry Mark off the field while he wiped the blood away from his nose. An instant fear shot through her entire body as she realized that Alex was out sick, Collin was in detention, and she was the only substitute. She was going in the game. She tried as hard as she could not to picture herself being carried off the field in Coach’s arms, howling in pain, just as Mark was, on the side of the field. “Audrey! Can you do this?” hollered Coach, in a slightly panicky voice, still on the other side of the field. “I’m ready to go,” Audrey said nervously, to herself more than anyone else. The second Audrey stepped onto the field, she knew she was in trouble. The Strikers played rough, probably rougher than she had ever seen soccer before. It reminded her of the game her dad took her to last year, in Charleston. It was a professional game, in a large stadium. The rain crashed down, like cold buckets of water falling over their heads in through the darkness. The stadium lights barely filtered through the torrents of water pouring down on them to reveal a large, green field with 22 soaking men running and sliding through the miserable mud puddles. Men were being body-checked and slide-tackled right and left, and they were slipping and falling in the slippery mud. Hewitt passed Convoy the ball, but before he could trap it, a man slide-tackled Convoy from behind. Convoy, caught when he wasn't expecting it, tried to react, but his hands weren't fast enough to break his fall. He smashed face-first into the ground, and his shattered nose spurted glistening ruby blood everywhere. “Oomph!” Audrey grunted as she fell to the ground. She had to pay more attention in a game like this. The player that pushed her over smirked as she looked up at him and then at the ref. The ref was facing the other direction. Clearly he hadn’t seen Audrey get pushed to the ground. Or else, more likely, he didn’t even care. Audrey knew she had to be tough to stay in the game with these guys. She thought back to last year. It was the league finals of her team in Charleston. She was on a girls' team then. The team they played, the Blaze, had some of the biggest girls Audrey had ever seen. They pushed her around then, but she fought back. She just had to play like that, and she would be fine. The next thing Audrey knew, she had the ball at her feet. She had stolen it from one of the Strikers’ midfielders, and started dribbling up the field. One by one, she dribbled past the defenders until she was in the goal box. It was just her and the goalie now. She pulled her right leg back, ready to take a shot. It was perfect. She had the entire goal to work with. All she had to do was place the ball in the corner, and the game would be tied 1-1. It was her chance. The crowd would go wild. Audrey fell to the ground with another grunt. She had been slide-tackled by the biggest of the Strikers’ defenders, from behind. Audrey heard the ref’s whistle blow, calling a foul. It was a foul in the goal box, which meant someone on her team had to take a penalty kick on the goal. She tried to get up from the ground so she could move out of the way so one of the boys could take the kick. She felt a sharp pain in her knee as she tried to stand, and she fell back to the ground. She could tell her knee was bruised and starting to swell, but she knew if she wanted any respect from her teammates or her coach, she would have to be strong and get up.

Moonlit River. Graphic art by Nisha

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“Audrey, get up! You’re taking the shot!” Coach yelled from the sidelines. “I’m giving you a chance here! Don’t blow it!” Audrey stood up slowly, surprised, but very pleased. This was her big chance. It was her chance to prove herself worthy of being on the team. Her heart pounded nervously as she took the ball from the referee and placed it in the spot he was pointing to. She took three steps backwards and stared at the goal. She focused in on the bottom left corner of the goal. It was the perfect spot to place the ball. The ref blew the whistle, indicating for her to shoot the ball. The crowd roared. Audrey had placed the ball perfectly in the left corner of the net. The game was tied 1-1 and her team was going crazy. “Come on guys, we’re in this now! We can take the lead!” screamed the captain of Audrey’s team. The team was pumped up now. They were ready to fight back and be just as physical as the Strikers. Audrey didn’t know what came over her. She was ready to fight, too. As the forward passed the ball back to the defense in the kickoff, she sprinted up the field and immediately stole the ball from the defender. He tried to slide-tackle her, but she saw it coming and raced out of the way, leaving him slide-tackling the spot she had been seconds before. She passed the ball to Ryan, the forward, who sent the ball to Jack. Audrey ran up the field, and she was wide open now. She called for the ball as loudly as she could. Jack obviously heard, but decided to ignore her. He took a weak shot from far out, which rolled right to the goalie. “Jack, pass the ball! Audrey was wide open!” screamed Coach. Finally, she was getting some respect, Audrey thought. The goalie punted the ball to his teammate, who quickly received the ball and sprinted towards a Tigers defender. He ran past two of the defenders and prepared to take a shot. Audrey watched as her team’s goalie charged the player dribbling the ball. The player touched the ball past the goalie and had a wide open goal. It was 1-2 now, and the Tigers didn’t have long to catch back up. Audrey was furious now. She wanted to win more than anything. The center midfielder passed her the ball. She took the ball up the sideline and crossed it into the box. The goalie jumped up and tried to grab the ball, but it slipped out of his hands and went out of bounds. Corner kick. “Audrey! I want you to take it!” Audrey had never really taken corner kicks. That was always Cindy’s job on her old team. She dribbled the ball to the corner flag. She placed the ball next to the flag and backed up three paces. She looked up and saw Jack wide open in the middle of the goal box. She ran at the ball, raising her arm to signal that she was going to kick it, and crossed it perfectly in front of the goal, flying through the air, straight to Jack. He easily headed the ball past the goalie’s hands and into the goal. 2-2! The game was tied again. The other team took the kick-off, and Mark tried to steal the ball from the offender, but he pushed past him, pulled a fake on Ryan, who was sent sprawling in the other direction, and crossed it to his teammate positioned right in front of the goal. The goalie, James, who had been facing the other offender, tried to turn, but the other player slipped the ball in behind him. Audrey's heart sank, and she stood there, furious at what they had just let happen. The ref blew his whistle to signify a goal. Audrey took the kickoff, and they tried to fight back and get another goal, but seconds later the ref took a final blow on his whistle. The game was over. Audrey started to jog back to the sidelines, but then realized that the rest of the team was slouching and dragging their feet as they went. She quickly slowed her pace, not wanting to go any faster than anyone else. As she approached the sideline, Coach tried to cheer up the team with false confidence. “Good try, guys. You played your hearts out, out there,” he began, but a look at their disappointed faces quickly silenced him. Audrey tried to keep an indifferent outer appearance, but inside she was jumping for joy. She was overjoyed at finally being able to do something for the team. Still, she felt a little upset that she hadn’t been able to drag the team to victory. “I could have done it if I’d played the whole game,” she thought to herself as she slapped hands with the other team. She resolved to make sure to get Coach to give her more playing time.

Audrey traipsed over to the bench and unfastened her cleats and shin guards. After rummaging around in her equipment bag, she found her sneakers and pulled them on. As she was about to get up and leave, a shadow fell over her. She looked up and saw her coach looking at her, a peculiar look on his face. “Uh, hey Coach” Audrey stammered out, disconcerted by the lopsided mouth and half squinting eyes of her coach. A small silence followed. “Audrey,” he started after a breath, “I want you to know I’m proud of what you did today and I… I’m sorry about ignoring you during the season.” He looked a little ashamed. Audrey was surprised; her coach was always a hard man, focused on training them, but he was never really their friend, and he never showed much emotion. Audrey wasn’t sure what to say. “Uh, thank- thanks Coach. It’s okay,” was the best she could come up with. “Okay. See you at practice tomorrow,” he said, regaining his composure and walking off. Audrey smiled slightly as she collected her shin guards and socks and walked towards the gym. She might actually be looking forward to practice.

—Orlin, Julia, Aliza

Two-ton Tulip. Mosaic by Mark

Picasso Gets a New Guitar (Inspired by Pablo Picasso’s Old Guitarist, 1903) by John

sea green eyes
You think you don't fit in You think you should seem like them. But look at yourself. What do you see? Look beyond those sea-green eyes Look at the person inside. Why do you need To be like everyone else? I like you how you are. I don’t care who you think you are I don’t care How you look I don’t care What you say you are All I see Is beauty. You may be different than me And you may be unlike them And you may be unusual to some But when I look in your eyes You’re the same as me. I don’t care who you think you are I don’t care How you look I don’t care What you say you are All I see Is beauty. All I see Is beauty.

Blue Girl. Pencil sketch by

Tori

—Katherina

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my friend
Her eyes are like windows, Showing me what she is thinking about, Or how she is feeling. Her smile is a warm hug, Comforting me, In my times of need. Her heart is always there for me, A safe shelter for me when I’m sad. Her hands reach out to me in warmth, To shield me from my fears, And to help me along when I need guidance. My life is never the same without her, Without running with her, Without smiling with her, Without laughing with her. And each day I think about her and wish, That she would wake up from her permanent sleep. When the sun rises I feel her smile. When the sky is clear I see her eyes. But only in my heart do I see HER. Mary Cassatt’s Sister Text Messages Her Friend. Oil Painting by Aliza

—Cari

humans
We are all…. Shoes. We’re stepped on We’re used We are props for other people. Yes. We are all shoes. We are all… Birds. Trying to leave the nest. looking for our wings. Searching for our independence. Yes. We are all birds. We are all…. Windows. We are seen through. Clear. People looking but Never seeing. Yes. We are all windows. We are all… ourselves We have feelings We make mistakes. We laugh and we hurt We anger and we adore. Yes. We are all…. Humans.
Sunset. Digital photograph by Cami

to be human
To be human is to make mistakes, To feel the pain of the fall. To be human is to believe Even if we don’t know. We die when our time is over. To be human is to cry As tears roll down your cheeks. To be human is to smile, To feel the happiness absorb your soul. To be human is to love The love that is not yet lost.
—Erin

—Mel

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Weed. Digital Photograph by Katie

growing older
Inspired by Holocaust survivor Joann Abramson

Hitler, among other things, stole my childhood. He stole the long hours in the classroom and the hot summers playing with friends. Instead I was forcefully thrown into adulthood, Taking on responsibilities heavier than I was. The first time I was forced to walk in the wet gutter, With the wet muck sloshing on my feet, Seeing the looks on the people’s faces who walked on the sidewalk, Realizing that we were not all treated equal, I was growing older. When my friends started disappearing, And I didn’t know where they went, But I knew they weren’t returning, I was growing older. Walking to the market, Buying food for my family when it was illegal for a Jew to shop, Knowing that if I was turned in, much trouble would happen, I was growing older. When I was in the ghetto, Slipping out through cracks in the large brick wall, The taste of danger in my mouth, Holding my breath as I slipped down the hill to get food, Knowing the whole ghetto depended on me, I was growing older. Holding my two small cousins’ warm hands, Taking them to safety, In the warm straw of a Czech farmer’s hayloft, Knowing that one mistake could mean their death, I was growing older. Watching from the bushes, As thousands of men, women, and children dug their own graves, Were shot and pushed in. The smell of death and blood hanging in the air, The horrible sound of a Nazi voice asking for some vodka, I was growing older. Working for the Polish Underground, Eavesdropping on a Nazi officer,

I was growing older. In a concentration camp, Sitting in the back of a bunk, Trying unsuccessfully to sleep sitting up, Instead, talking to God, Asking “Why? Why? Why?” Wondering when the glorious day would come, That my suffering would be over, I was growing older. Going to work one day, My best friend being pulled out of line, With the horrible shout “Du!” of the Nazi guards, Later seeing her hanging, dead, gone from the world, Vowing never to become close to someone again, I was growing older. Working for the Nazis, Translating their orders, Saved only because I could speak many tongues, Telling young men that they had to be in the army, That they might never return to their family, Sometimes lying to help them, I was growing older. Told to dig a hole, Digging my own grave, A whispered remark “Slow down”, And knowing that the end was near, I was growing older. Being rescued by the Soviets, Taken to a hospital and saved, Learning that kindness still exists, Wondering at the promise of America, I was growing older. Of all the many things Hitler took from me, One thing I will never repossess Is my childhood.

—Nicole

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revelations
When I was younger I thought I knew… That the military was all fun and games; there was never any real danger That the world revolved solely around me, and no one else mattered That God would never allow for such disasters as famine and war to strike others That the world is wide open to everyone, no matter who you are or where you come from Now that I’m older I realize that… The military is really a fight for survival, not a fun game against others I must take others into account and must know that I will not always get my way Life isn’t perfect; even God can make a few mistakes Many people from families of lesser economic status cannot receive that same opportunities as those of the wealthy If I had the chance I might try to help others understand the world and how they see it better If I thought I could I would try not to believe all the lies I was told as a child in order to protect me Why can people not be given the clean truth-- not the lies which fester like open wounds?

—Chase

still a kid
I wish I was still a kid, That I didn't have all this responsibility. I wish I was still a kid, Pretend playing away my days, Which were measured only in five minute timeouts. I wish I was still a kid, Every story another world To explore, And every day another adventure To embark upon. I wish I was still a kid, My only problems simple enough To solve in a day, And all the trust in the world bestowed Upon anyone who said "hello": Innocent until proven guilty, A friend until proven an enemy. I wish I was still a kid, My only fright the inhabitant of a movie, And my only injustice a game at school. I wish I was still a kid, A smile that brightened the world, A carefree confidence, And an absolute acceptance. I wish I was still a kid.

—Ted

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the artist
The brush glides gracefully across the rough canvas Paint oozes out of the tube like colorful toothpaste, Silky bristles dunk into the rainbow puddles, The artist’s hand waltzes across the blank sheet, As a trail of color emerges from behind, A hand reaches up and blots a sweaty brow, Wiping away worries. At last it is finished The once black canvas is now clad in a colorful suit of oranges, reds, browns, and blues. An audience is drawn like metal to a magnet. They devour the skill, and praise the beauty. Hundreds of chattering crickets gathered, To marvel at this wonderful piece of heaven, That a small-town nobody created. —Katherine

perfect “a” or perfect “b”
Perfect A, She sits alone, Holding the folder of perfection Perfect Tests, Reports, Quizzes, And Homework, But she sits alone. Her head bowed, Her hair messy and tangled, A bump on the edge of her cheek, She is perfect, But she sits alone Perfect B, She sits, Holding the folder of F’s, Surrounded by a crowd of many Admirers And Friends, But she fails. She sits, Staring at the folder, Her blonde hair hanging, In a perfect curtain, Her blue eyes shining, She is perfect, But she fails.

—Nisha
. Graphic art by N Pool with water isha

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worth
Inspired by Holocaust survivor Gizella Abramson

Their eyes talked to each other, But never once did they look me. I was not worthy. The whispers from the gutter, I could hear the sound, but not the words. I was not worthy. The luxurious smells from my Aunt's big pot of soup In the ghetto drove the darkness away that told us "You are not worthy.” Escape and then death and despair, But I could help. I was worthy. I am a person, A person of the world. I will always be worthy. No matter what they say or do, I will not hate Because I am worthy.
—Adrienne

WWII P-51 Mustangs. Graphic Art by Josh Milligan