Black n White
Cute, silent, but quaint.
You remind me I’m no saint.
Deep brown eyes, glossy pink lips.
No scars or scratches, more like rips.
By Jessica Jiang
Small jokes and inside conversations
Averted eyes, plastered smiles
Say you got no time, no time
No time, gotta go, too much to do
Pulled-low hats, wind blown hair
Hand squeezed, lips locked,
People saw but we don’t care
Saw you laughing, it wasn’t with me
Heard you crying, not on my shoulder
Thought you were talking, not to me
Call you up, late at night
Early morning conversations used to feel so right
But all you say is no time, gotta go
There’s so much I have to do
I’ll call you next time, when you’ve got more
Lightning sparks across dark skies
Red-chested birds, no heart, that still fly
Saw them all, under the umbrella that you brought
Said that it's going to be romantic, that’s what you thought
Didn’t think that we’ll be soaked but that’s the way we kissed
Now all you say, all I hear is no time no time
No time for love, no time for good nights, and sweeter dreams
Heard you fell in love, what do those words mean
No time no time, all you say
All I hear, there’s the door, it’s that way
By Veronika Kowalski
I’m in a room with a bunch of 20 year olds I don’t know but recognize
And I guess I’m 20 here too because I fit in just fine.
The room is dark. Not pitch black, but dark.
There is a guy whose face no one has seen,
and he has been killing people.
We are hiding from this guy.
The way people die is they first get notes saying how they will die.
They don’t know when it will happen
it’s not a matter of if, but when.
The girl across from me, since we are sitting in a corner, is crying
she is sitting in front of a door
she gets a note
I guess it says “you will be stabbed” or something stupid like that
The rest of us are trying to stay calm.
After a while the door swings open from behind and the girl is half dragged, half falls into the man
He is wearing long sleek black gloves and that is all I am really able to see of him
For some reason I can’t see his face; maybe the door is covering it, but something makes me look away and look at the girl’s friend
She is standing in front of her with her hands to her mouth
It’s kind of like a movie where they don’t let you see the guy’s face; they tease you
but you can never see his face
By Brian Zhang
As warm and generous
a place the world may seem
It is a two-way door
Man can choose to be alone
But it is he who has further to fall.
A shattered soul
unaware of its own happiness
Bearing the chains of society
The mightiest beast cries for consolation
at a time of darkness and despair,
Only when he seeks the same pain in another
Shall his dreams become reality.
Man can choose to share his cup of coffee
For he has discovered the sole key to success.
A rejoiced soul
whose happiness is held together by the strongest force
living to its heart’s content
A priceless treasure buried in the deepest point of my happiness
Only to be dug up
Been There. Done That
I can hear them say
One day you will be alone
I already am
Ode to Eight Hours
By Maggie Liu
If there ever was a miracle
Then it happened yesterday
I was borderline hysterical
That I somehow found a way
Every second was a melody
Every minute was a tune
I couldn’t believe this happened to me
And it wasn’t even June
I set out to do the work that was due
And in an hour I was done
I swear to you this story’s true
Lies, I have none
I went to bed at nine p.m.
You could imagine my surprise
I woke up, five-thirty a.m.
And I was energized
You may not consider this truthful
But believe me I beseech
Not procrastinating has proven fruitful
Because I got eight hours of sleep
By Veronika Kowalski
I got off the train, early, at Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center, with an adult friend. I was telling her why I had caused a scene as we walked up a grassy hill. She was listening intently. She agreed with my course of action. There were video cameras scattered around the sides of our path. They were surrounded by white plastic in the shape of Mickey Mouse’s face. We were heading toward the forest. I saw a slender, tall, blonde girl running our direction. Then, we saw a boy running after her. He was shouting, “Thief!” so I started running after her, too. My friend said when someone is running into a forest, it’s usually because they’ve stolen something.
I was running after her for about a couple of minutes. The trees got taller, the woods got more dense. The trees were actually really skinny. I remembered the article that mentioned how longer strides made faster runners. I made longer strides. I could feel the ball of my foot digging further into the ground. I leaped over a dried-up creek, caught the girl, and we fell. The boy who was calling her a thief caught up to me. He reached into the reusable grocery bag the girl was carrying, and took out a box of cookies or something.
“I would help her up,” the boy shrugged, “but she has the flu.”
If he was implying I would get the flu, I didn’t really care. I told the girl. Almost without thinking, I said, “Go home and get something to eat.” But maybe this was her home. And maybe that was her something to eat.
As I released her, I noticed that one of her elbows was further down her arm than the other.
It's Easy to Break Things
By Vanessa Lam
Rage slams down, spirals out
Be careful, an earthquake is happening
It’s tearing through pride and hope
Through wispy dreams anchored by tears
And the glass walls keeping everything in
(hadn’t they been designed with concrete?)
There’s the shock wave, look
There are glass shards being thrown out
Remember not to let them go
Your cloudy dreams can be found another day
And hope and pride can be restored
But if you hit others with those shards
Broken trust is not easily repaired
By Jessica Jiang
i am only
and with my
but only because
they look upon
you and only
a belly button,
show some skin,
i want to see
more than a
a reincarnation of
but they only
need you for your
and you’re just
full of fireworks.
Man Named Amy
By Veronika Kowalski
I’m in a subway car in on a dimly-lit B train. There are a couple of people standing here and there. I’m reading, or doing a workbook, or something. I realized I had fifteen dollars on my lap; a ten and a five. I stuffed them into my coat pocket.
The man next to me smiled. “Hi, I’m Amy.”
I started shouting. I looked at my dad, who was sitting a few feet away. I started calling him. My voice was hoarse. He looked around a bit, but his eyes didn’t meet mine. I kept screaming, looking for somewhere else to sit. One lady saw me and pointed at the two chairs at the end of the car. Good idea. The man named Amy started coming toward me. If he sat down next to me, I would be trapped. Bad idea. For a couple of minutes, I switched seats, changed places, tried to get in touch with my dad. Eventually, I ended up sitting in the front row of these three rows with three chairs each, all facing the same direction. In the middle row, there was Tahani, and in the third row, there was Allan, and my dad. I talked to Tahani. “Where are you going?”
“I’m going trick-or-treating at Union Square.”
“Hey, me too! Are you going with Jada, Nawar, and-” Suddenly, I saw the man named Amy was sitting next to my friend. I started screaming, out of fear this time. Everyone else started screaming, too, at each other. It must have been really pleasant for the other people on the train.
“See? That’s what I mean,” remarked Allan.
I paused. “Wait, Allan, are you the one who’s been following me this whole time?” It was darker than I thought in the subway car.
He cringed. “It just goes to show how certain characteristics can make someone look more menacing than they actually are, and how some people can overreact.”
“You wrote about this in your Spec article, didn’t you?” I was buying time to think of a legitimate answer. “Well, people don’t usually smile at me on the subway. And I don’t like talking to people on the subway I don’t know. The fact that he smiled at me, introduced himself to me, right after I put some money away, that was sort of telling. So I think my reaction was rational.”