All posts by Angelina Hue


A shadow isn’t really a thing.
It’s the absence of a thing.
(That thing is Light.)

We just stuck the name “shadow” on it,
I guess,
Because we got tired of saying,
“Hey, come look at this cool absence-of-light puppet.”

Claire Fenerty ’16


strung like tightropes across her teeth
something unspoken holds her tongue back.

if she were to let It spring loose,
It would probably jump from her mouth with such force It

would singe somebody’s eyebrows. It would char her lips but It
would mean something. and It would smell of

exhaustion or
smallness or

strange cologne that’s too close, an empty bus and a
man who reads the Times, but can’t read “go” in crossed

arms. It is shattered glass, blood mixed with wine and whiskey. It tastes of kitchens
flooded with women, warm light, sad laughter. It tastes of a tangible divide, of


and bittersweetness, of
dashes of sugar, spice, and


is the apron she wears.
is because she hates cooking
is the little scars on her arms from hot grease

and It is time.
too much time.

Rose Joseph ’16

an ode never uttered

so much i wish i can do
so much i need to say
so much i care for you
so much i want you around each passing day

i know the world is scary
i know the world is hard
i know the world is daunting
but before i did not know that the world has left you scarred

the pain i feel seems insurmountable
but then i remember you
your strength to tell me everything
your ability to try and start new

i tell you all is fine
and i pray to god it is
yet the unspoken truth remains
that we are both still just kids

i am amazed that you are so strong
you are atlas, the great titan
the world is your burden,
but please, your load, let me lighten.

Madison Kaplan ’16

To The Single Moms

To the ultimate super woman
Thats is not recognized in a Marvel comic book
Who works like a mad man
And who knows how to cook
To the single mom
Whose joy lies in her children
Know that you are loved
Loved so much that it no words can describe
No words can emphasize
The work that you do
No one saw the greatness in you
Not being in the same situation
They could only see from one point of view
I appreciate your dedication
To ensuring that my life is the best
And trust me mom I will try to fulfill your request
So don’t fret
Wipe that tear from your eye
Don’t sweat
Look alive
Because you don’t need a man
You are independent and strong
And thats why I love you
I have much love to all the super moms out there
To the aunties, the sisters, the grandmothers, the moms
Who had to or have to raise a child on their own
Know that being acknowledged by Marvel doesn’t make you a superhero
Being loved by your child
Living for your children
Willing to risk your life for your child
Protecting and providing for your children
Is what makes you a super woman
M is for magnificent
O is for outrageous
M is for magical
All words to describe you
The ultimate super woman

Alena McGrew ’18

Thumbs Up For Donald Trump

I assure you, I will run this great nation with only the best intent
As a man who has a lot of money, I am well qualified to be president

I relate deeply with those who are blue collar
Because I launched my career with the small loan of a million dollars

That’s right America, I have answered your prayers
But of course, a sum of our tax money will go to grooming my hair

Besides, who needs taxes for health care when you are born economically blessed
Up here at the top 1%, it’s hard to hear the poor cry of distress

Upon other nations, friendly ways I shall coerce
I am a man who gets along with people (ignore my second divorce)

I will shut out the immigrants and bring terrorism to a halt
Because obviously a few extremists cause all Muslims to be at fault

I will get this economy into its prime
Forget that I have been bankrupt a whopping four times

America doesn’t really need a leader with a smart brain
We just need someone who will make America great again

Maya Gonzales ’18

Seven Stages of Tree

All the world’s a forest
And all the men and women merely trees
They blossom and fall
And one man in his time turns many shades
His growth in seven stages. At first infancy,
Fragile, vulnerable, pushing through the soil.
Then, the youth, with slender branches
And pointed top, stretching like a cat
Slowly to the sky. And then the prime of life,
Full like heart, with vivid leaves
Mistaken for emeralds. Then, middle age
With new traits and a flattened crown,
still growing unique,
An old dog learning new tricks. And then, a senior,
With sparse branches and dead weight,
Systems down, with aching limbs
And so he fulfills his stage. The sixth age shifts
Into barren and withered twilight,
Shrunken down, unsound,
They usually don’t go in a hurry.
Last stage of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is the last life, pure ashes
No branches, no bark, nothing.

Rene Fong ’19

On Mission

They say we’re safe now.
New schools,
cool shoes,
new rules,
This is the right thing to do.
They’ve cut the shoelaces of those
Jordans that hung from the telephone wires
on Market street.
There are new places to eat and
no one’s getting beat
but, we’re bereft of those beats.
You know, the ones that used to fill the streets
and the halls;
before strip malls,
sounds inviting and rich
filled the space around us.
Quickly stitched
together was this
patchwork quilt,
only a scrap of us here and there,
embroidering the initials
of the kid who died
you know, his legacy lived on a beloved wall
before this place was
The other day it was painted over,
no place to offer
or to remember
except that altar in the community center.
Is there a gift receipt for that?

Erin Valoroso ’18


After one week, he made my name the lyric for every song on the radio.
After one month, he gently rocked me to sleep in his cradled arms.
After six months, he scurried to my house every day just to catch a glimpse of my drooling smile.
After one year, he sat on the pink carpet as I bounced on my tiny legs. With his worn hands, he beckoned me closer. When I could no longer support my chubbiness, he caught me in his arms.
After two years, he rose from the chair as I tugged off his wedding ring. Although he predicted my movements, he let me guide him to the center of the living room to begin our routine performance. As the music filled the air, we became lost in our simple dance of carefreeness, joy, and love.
After three years, he tickled me to tears until I fell onto his lap. He grabbed the nearest book from the bookshelf, and while his right hand flipped the pages, his left hand provided an armrest.
After four years, he defended me against bullies. When my cousins locked me away in the prison of my aunt’s dark bedroom, he rescued his crying princess.
After six years, he took me on mini road trips. Even though I insisted that I was a big girl, he guided me through the sea of strangers’ faces with the warmth of his hand.
After eight years, he only visited during the holidays, but I didn’t care. While my family became lost in mahjong and gossip, he wove magical tales about his home and slipped twenty-dollar bills into my ponytail.
After eleven years, I decided to visit him. As I scribbled a mental list of my many updates, he opened the door and welcomed me inside.
But something seemed off. Maybe it was because he skipped our usual handshake. Or because he didn’t make my favorite peanut butter banana sandwich. Or because he had not once said my name.
After twelve years, he and I lost something dear. When my family and I arrived at the holiday party, I heard his voice drift from the living room. I bolted up the stairs and reached out for a hug, but he just grinned and asked, “Who is this girl?” He had lost his memories, and I had lost my best friend.
After thirteen years, I watched him enter the boarding terminal before his flight back home. As I stared at his retreating figure, I thought about his turning his back on everything we had experienced.
After sixteen years, I received the news in the early morning: he had passed away. His memory was foggy, but he lived peacefully.
After eighteen years, I live peacefully, but my memory is crystal clear. Although I did not know it before, the man I had grown to love – my grandfather – lives in my memories.

Allyson Abad ’16

Diva Work

I’ve got selfies to take
Hearts to break
Heads to turn
Haters to burn
Got cheeks to kiss
“Friends” I won’t miss
I’ve got gowns to wear
Somebody do my hair
Gotta walk the walk
Talk the talk
I got minds to blow
Miles to go
I’ve got stuff to do
Can’t waste time on you.

I’m cocooned in a feather bed
Warm my hands with a mug of tea
Relax my stiff posture and
Let myself be free.

I don’t have to be ruthless
And defend what is mine
Alone, no one can see
I’m not perfectly fine.

Pull me in, story
Take me somewhere new
Let me feel each page
And my mind renew.

Ella McQuaid ’19

Green-Eyed Monster

With my tempting melody I sing to my victims.
Enchanting them as sirens did the Greeks.
Luring them to their pitiful downfalls.
After me, people become gluttons of insecurity and anger,
While I watch with simpering laughter.
Silly humans. So easily controlled.

If you so desire to find me,
Look no further.

I am within you as you sit on the sidelines,
Plastering on a smile,
Watching your best friend make the winning shot,
Underneath the crowd’s roaring cheers,
You bury your bitterness of getting cut this season.

I am within you as you scroll mindlessly,
Admiring iridescent Tumblr models.
Their beaming smiles and slender figures,
Shaping your definition of beautiful.
As you look into the mirror,
My words leave your wall of confidence in shambles.
You see only your blemished skin and pudgy flaws.

I am within you as you stay up until 2 A.M.
Waiting for a notification to remind you that he still cares.
Your mind starts racing,
Where is he? Who is he with?
You’ve got it all wrong,
The only “other girl” is me.
For I am the lascivious nymph feeding your paranoia,
Forcing you to doubt his intentions.

Infiltrating even the strongest souls,
I leave all of my victims searching madly with broken compasses:
For some sense of validation
For some sense of confidence
For some sense of love
What a shame.

Trish Hoy ’16


there was a girl
who sat in the back of the room
masked in the shadows
that covered her like a blanket
she seldom spoke unless spoken to
but at the same time she stood out
a flower taller than the rest
something about her intrigued me
the way she carried herself
a quiet confidence
a feeling of serenity
a look of tranquility
rested on her face
it only took a hello and a smile
that turned into countless hours of talking
I discovered a fascinating, fun-loving individual
it made me wonder
why she acted so differently in the classroom
later I realized
I was the one she had opened up to
because I showed genuine interest in developing a friendship
and she only showed others what she wanted them to see

Amanda Mei ’19

Dear Grandma,

The photo albums
That I would wriggle out from the old oak chest
And unfold on your desk
To look at with you,
As your fingers would caress the faces,
I would imagine you could still smile like you used to,
You would you laugh or sigh,
And I would listen to the stories you wish you could tell me,
Are gone.
Slowly, too, you have gone, but I have not cried, even though
I clung to you and choked on my tears when your
Fluffy poodle
Was put down.
When my mom read me a picture book about
A grandpa who kept losing his keys
And would always love his granddaughter,
Even when he couldn’t remember her name,
I tried to believe it was just a story.
I’ve never wanted to face sad endings, especially real ones;
I still haven’t read the memoir you tried so hard to finish,
And I still haven’t asked what happened to your sparkly clip-on earrings.
I forgot stories you would tell me as I would put them on, wanting to be like you.
I still want to be like you.
So please, tell me the things I need to know: Why didn’t you pierce your ears?
Where are these pressed flowers, this postcard-sized painting, this Mary statue from?
Can you teach me how to say “I love you,” “I’m your granddaughter,” “Remember?” in a language you can understand?
What should I have asked you? What should I have told you?
I want to tell you I played your song on your piano one last time before they took it away,
Or did you already know?
Because Grandma, that day, the light turned on.
The light in the downstairs bathroom with the blue honeycomb tile
Turned on
And was warm,
And I was scared,
And I was trying not to believe.
Isn’t it only light bulbs can burn out and come back to life?
And gone are your smiles, your sparkles, your music,
And the light turned on.
And your mom forgot, my mom and I am already forgetting, and my granddaughter will forget,
But the light turned on,
Warm as the hugs I wish you could give me,
Bright as the smiles that flashed from your photo albums long gone.

Katrina Keating ’16

Cat Call

Hey girl, turn around! Oh…come on baby, don’t walk away, you know you love it.”

The girl tries to hold her skirt down and keeps a brisk pace down the sidewalk, she will not turn her head. She grips a shiny, black keychain tightly in her hand. She lifts the keychain up to reassure herself and reads the word mace on the side; she sighs. The girl finally arrives at her apartment, shakily reaches into her bag and grabs her key. She turns her head after each step, hoping he will not appear behind her. On the third floor she enters her apartment and sets her purse down on the counter. The girl slowly falls onto her couch and looks up at the fan. She begins to study her day– each minute and every move. The girl reflects on what happened ten minutes beforehand. Is this skirt too short? Maybe I should throw it out…She recalls his exact words, “Oh…come on baby, don’t walk away, you know you love it.” Why does he think I like that? Did I lead him on? After lying down for a few minutes the girl stands and saunters over to the kitchen. She pulls down her blue silk skirt, gazes at it, and tosses it in the trash.

Xandi McMahon ’17

for my sisters

fall completely, intensely in love with yourself
walk as if the earth was created
for you to have a floor to dance on

the blood that runs through your veins
is that of warriors
who have fought tirelessly for you

you are magic
you are moonlight

regain your love of being
that the world has wanted you to forget
in the fear that you might
turn us all upside down

Silvia Jiménez-Montano ’17

Aren’t They Beautiful?

      Aren’t they beautiful?” I asked my Lolo as he stared at the tropical fish in the aquarium of the nursing home lobby.

      My Lolo’s old, crinkly eyes looked up and met my gaze through the reflection of the aquarium glass. He smiled at me from his wheelchair and pointed to a bright yellow fish. “This one reminds me of home.”

      I nodded my head and sat back further into my chair, waiting. Waiting for my Lolo to begin retelling the stories of his childhood that I had never grown tired of listening to.

      “When I was younger,” he began, “I used to live among these fish. My family lived on the tiny island of Tiwi in the Bicol region of the Philippines, and our house was right along the ocean. If I wanted to see my friends, I would swim across the head of the island to get to them on the other side. Many of these fish,” he motioned to the aquarium, “Swam beside me. And at night, when we got hungry during those hot, sleepless Summers, my friends and I would take boats out into the bay. We would shine lanterns over the surface of the water, and as soon as a big Tuna came to investigate, we would spear it. We would spend those nights out on the beach, and in the mornings we would race among the rows of my father’s plantation.”

      As my Lolo’s eyes glazed over while he talked, I realized that he was no longer talking to me, but to his long forgotten friends of the past. His mind had transported him back to the white beaches, crystal clear waters, and lush plantations that I could only imagine. In that moment, I no longer existed to him…

      Later, as I rode on the bus going home, I didn’t allow myself to think about the bad fall that Lolo had taken last Spring, or about the sickness that was wracking his frail body.

      Instead, I thought about the little Asian boy who spent his childhood cutting coconuts from his father’s trees and swimming in the coral reef.

      I thought about the determined young man who worked two jobs throughout college, so that he could attend engineering school.

      I thought about the brave immigrant who was separated from his wife and children for one year before he could afford to pay for their plane tickets.

      I thought about my hero who used to take me to the playground and give me ice cream when it was only 8 in the morning.

      And above all, I thought about the native Filipino who, like so many other immigrants, left the only home he had ever known to create a better life for himself, his children, and eventually his grandchildren. The man who unwillingly, unknowingly, and unconditionally sacrificed so much for his family and for me.

Sophia Harrison ’17

My One and Only

Her beautiful exterior fills my heart,
Her glowing interior awes my soul,
Oh how she truly is a work of art,
Oh what a dazzling story to be told.

Although my love may be miles away,
And I am waiting on her presence,
I just only have oh so much to say,
For she is filled with many cooked pheasants.

She is the true love of my tasteless life,
She is the cause of my dull existence.
She is there even in times of strife,
Like when I drop my food, for instance.

O my dear fridge, you may be down the stairs and to the right,
But to me you will never be out of sight.

Tiffany Hue ’18

The Noise

Do you hear that?
It can’t be just me,
From left to right, up to down,
That noise is everywhere!

Even when I escape to a cafe,
Or take a trip to paradise,
Drive to the grocery store,
And even in the comfort of my own home.

What could it be?
Where is it coming from?
I ask my mother, my father,
And even my doctor.

None of them seem to have the answer,
I just might go insane.
I’ve looked everywhere,
Under the pillows, under the bed.

Is it in my head?
Or the thousands of people surrounding me?
Is it her?
Is it him?

There it is! I’ve found it, it’s none of them.
It’s just those darn keyboard clicks again.

Tiffany Hue ’18


a boy i once knew
could describe
in great detail
how difficult it is
to be in love with the sun

“he was unreliable
somedays i would see him
others i would not
at night not at all”

“i did not mind the burns
they were only skin deep
the real pain was
the illusion of closeness
when i was light years away”

Silvia Jiménez-Montano ’17

A Girl Upon the Shore

A girl upon the shore, glassy eyes towards the sea
Blank as a canvas, thinks of her beloved four
They are covered in filth and grime, beside the old willow tree

Stolen by sickness, failed to be guarded by remedy
Takes a step into the shallows, a black figure looms offshore
A girl upon the shore, glassy eyes towards the sea.

Accidents claim the best men, charismatic as can be
Cold on the ankles, numb in the toes, step once more
They are covered in filth and grime, beside the old willow tree

Rage burning bright, pierces the heart and clouds the judgment of thee
Deserted, fish nibbling her hips, the waves roar
A girl upon the shore, glassy eyes towards the sea.

Vengeance is a deafening cry, seizing those guilty of immorality
Almost to the black, one more step, to see the four
They are covered in filth and grime, beside the old willow tree.

Cold on the eyelids, red in the face, finally free
Black takes its fifth, brain no longer at war
A girl upon the shore, glassy eyes towards the sea
They are covered in filth and grime, beside the old willow tree.

Lucy Anastas ’19

Ocean Floor

The wave breaks over me,
My board snaps in half.

The front piece moves closer towards my head,
and everything shifts towards darkness.

My weightless body is sinking.

My sense of color shifts,
Light changes to dark.

As my body drops lower and lower,
I move like a feather released into the air, undulating with the waves.

I drop, the temperatures drops,
And I come to a halt.

Everything becomes still, and cold.

I feel silky caresses, seaweed wanting to consume me.
I hear faint hums, barely audible.

The hum turns to whispers, the stillness of my space interrupted.
My dream is broken with a yank on my arm.

Colin Niehaus ’19

The Small Boy Grows Tall

There was a little Boy
Who lived in a little house,
He loved his little life,
Being little as a mouse.

And all the Boy wanted
Was to grow big and tall,
And be a big grownup
Just as big as them all.

Despite him being small,
The world then seemed much smaller,
But that all started to change
We he began growing taller.

He became so smart
And the more that he knew,
The world seemed much bigger,
As he gained a new view.

The Boy learned of war,
Of tragedy and sorrow,
The Boy learned of sadness,
And the world of tomorrow.

He realized the world
Was much bigger than he,
And he understood inside
What he wanted to be.

He no longer wanted
To be big and tall,
He no longer wanted
To be taller than all.

What he wanted was simple,
But not possible at all,
He just wanted to go home
And again to be small.

Matthew Lange ’18

The Seven Ages of a Student

All the world’s a school,
And all the men and women merely students,
They have their orientations and graduations,
And students who change throughout their tenure,
Their phases being seven ages. At first the kindergartener,
Cheery and yearning for the teacher’s attention.
Then, the middle schooler with his light backpack
And young innocent mind, running like cheetah
Happily at recess. And then the junior high student,
Voice cracking like balloon, with an awkward conversation,
Made to his crush. Next the eight grader,
Teeming with confidence, and styled like a celebrity,
Envious of peers, imperfect, yet quick in judgement,
Striving for the popular reputation
Even once graduation has passed. And then the freshman
In big naive eyes, furnished with designer glasses,
With opinions all around, and stubble of poorly shaven,
Full of stupidity, and a new world to fit into,
And so he begins his journey. The sixth ages leads
To understanding and bonds,
With jokes on tongue, and lovers in mind,
Their youthful innocence lost forever, a world too small,
For college draws near, and their thirst for independence,
Flares up in their hearts, like the radios
And music in their car. Last scene of all,
That concludes this long stressful history,
Is graduation songs and the taste of freedom
Sans books, sans papers, sans clothes, sans everything.

Jack Lucas ’19

A College Checklist

Hello applicants!
Please use this checklist to help you in the application process.
We require:
Your current GPA and test scores (Under 4.2 and 2400 need not apply)
A list of extracurricular (preferably around fifteen but ten is acceptable)
Glowing recommendations from teachers, counselors, and Mr. Barack Obama
Your up to date financial information including weekly grocery expenses
Your family history with a detailed pedigree chart as far back as B.C.E.
An essay so personal you’ve stained it with your tears (yes, we count them)
Your proudest accomplishment; for example, adopting a third-world orphan
And finally
A personal statement telling us why you deserve to be part of the 5% we accept
Thank you for applying to our university! Your interest means a lot to us.
A Disclaimer:
Meeting these qualifications guarantees nothing.

Anna Meehan ’17

Human Beans

The meaning of life?
No one knows
yet these humans go around
searching for this feeling of happiness,
trying to connect
to each other, to god, to themselves, to the universe
They’re so little
Just look at those humans go!
They interact with one another
sometimes they go on dates
They spend time alone
writing poems at 2am trying to figure out it all out
They work together to fix their little planet, their civilizations, their morals
They keep wandering,
searching for jobs, money, chemicals that stimulate their brains
It’s crazy isn’t it?
What these human beans can do
They’re kind of beautiful I guess:
the way their colorful skin shines
and even grows hair,
they speak with a special energy,
they’re obsessed with these emotions,
they have these minds,
They’re each quite unique!
So they clash a lot, sometimes really badly.
They’re all trying to figure out what human means
They make these different religions, governments, philosophies, songs, books
It’s so funny
They don’t even realize
They’re all human beans!

Valerie Kau ’16


You wake up to darkness completely surrounding you.
You look over as the brightness of your clock says 5:23 am.
You don’t want to be late so you rush to put your clothes on.
You turn your radio on hoping to hear a good weather report.
You begin to make your bagel, smearing the cream cheese on as fast as you can.
You are too late.
You hear the car engine start.
You sprint out after the car.
You make it.
You hold on for life as the freezing California air blows through your hair.
You finally arrive at the one place that will never let you down.
You see only beauty here.
You can imagine yourself here for the rest of your life.
You walk down the hilly cliffside.
You see your favorite spot where you always observe.
You sit and watch wave after wave crash upon the shore.
You finally get ready and plunge into the freezing water.
And then it appears.
The one thing every person who has had the pleasure of meeting never wants to leave.
The one thing that can take you back to shore to your place of peace.
The one thing that makes you realize the sacrifices you made earlier are worth it.
All thoughts are unclouded.
All stress disappears.
All cares are absent.
A sheet of blue rises and the voice of the tide– the one thing you love most in the world– has finally arrived.
The wave crashes onto shore as your board comes to a halt.
You have found what you are looking for.
I have found a purpose.

Mallen Bischoff ’17

My View of the Ocean by An Amateur Surfer

I trudge through the whitewash with my eight-foot surfboard.
Green and brown slippery seaweed squirm past my toes and leash.
Hopping onto my board, I get an extra push through the water.
I begin to paddle with my hands – right, left, right, left
and diving under and over waves tasting the sickening sea salt.
Once past all the chaos of nature’s uncontrollable water,
I reach a part of the water where everything is still.
Everything is at peace with one another.
I can just float on the water with my board
and get lost in the infinite ocean.
As I lie flat on my back and look up at the sky,
the movement of the water makes such a rhythmic beat
I could fall asleep to the sound of it.
Watching for developing waves to come and
deciding which wave to ride,
I begin to paddle in front of the wave right until it catches up with me.
I use all my might and push up from my board.
I may not always catch a wave successfully, but when I do
I get this rush of adrenaline as I move with the water.
Once I jump off my board into the white wash I start all over,
Just to have that moment of inner peace again.

Devin Mallory ’17

Rockaway Beach

My feet sink into the cool sand as the milky waves barrel onto shore;
The crash and swish intensifies with each breath the ocean takes;
The swells erupt against the rocks in a white uproar;
Even the strong standing cliff slightly quakes.

One lone surfer, prominent among the gray waters and skies,
Combats the feisty weather blurring his vision; the rain refuses to subside.
He surveys the horizon with both fear and fascination in his eyes;
He keeps composure in the Armageddon of wild wind and tenacious tide.

The storm persists as I stand on this grounded soil,
Unharmed by the calamity of the sea and its toil.

Maddie Hughes ’18

(The Driver) Madman – A Story of Cars

At the concrete loop they called him Madman
Madmen can still be sadmen
With the engine roar I feel the tension soar
Because once you crash they’ll call you trash
And the “3-2-1 start!” is the beat, beat, beat, of his heart
At the racetrack he steals his pace back
As he sees his carrier begin to flicker he may begin to drink some liquor
Maybe a little drain from cocaine
Once you’re done it’s the setting of a sun
So all you’ll ever be is a faded memory
But guys with fast cars still leave scars
Though you are forgotten at least you can say you got in
Unlike that one face at every chase

Someone in the crowd
Wishing they could drive

Annabella Lynch ’16

Runner’s Work

mile after mile
street after street
stoplight after stoplight
polo fields, 19th, sutro baths
3, 4, 5, 6 miles
you name the place, we’ve been there
sweat dripping down my face
heart beating profusely
knees wearing out
just breathe, only two more miles
these hills couldn’t look any steeper
keep an upright position
and lower your arms
deep breath in and exhale
a biker just passed by
and a baby pushed in a stroller
ohh, how I envy their wheels
never mind them
the stoplight just turned green
looks like we’re off again

see, it’s like a game
it’s played rain or shine
there is no room for quitters

unscrewing the cap from my bottle
finally my dry throat is cured

chug, chug, chug, chug

a few minutes go by
stopping for a breath of air
and back to the water

i’ve found my oasis in a desert
ahh, water never has been more refreshing

Erin Louie ’19

The Danger in Sunsets

Like a sunset, he seeped into my realm
Honey golds, calm roses painted onto the canvas of blue
His secrets guiding his ship at the helm
Sounds of waves, washing away the darker hues
Yet, the fading sunset must one day go
The rolling tide must one day subside
There lies the danger in seeking a hero
A beauty too great walks with arrogant pride
In eternal darkness I am left lost
To wander through misty clouds of foggy gray
I wonder if sunsets are worth such cost
When their beauty is only to tempt, not stay
But until my sunset finds his way back
Stars are my comfort among the sea of black

Maya Gonzales ’18

The 7 stages of a not so perfect girl

Stage 1:
They tie off the knot and she’s as free as can be
Without experience or knowledge is she
She is let out in world
Untouched and beautiful
She wails and then waddles
And life is just great
This might be her happiest state

Next is stage 2
She knows she is as free as can be
School is easy and fun when you learn A,B,C
The pig-tails and giggles may fool some
But the tantrums and screams are what really come
She better hold on tight, cause a time out
isn’t the only strike to come about

Finally here comes stage 3
She only thinks she is as free as can be
But life’s about to strike her hard when she’s a teen
There’s high school, friends, and boys that could be
But locked in her room is where she’ll dream
Of pebbles being thrown to her fourth balcony

Stage 4 is here at last
As they send her far, far away
Finally she can feel, her freedom today
Until red and blue flash before her eyes
The telephone rings and to her mothers surprise
It’s her daughter calling, sounding glazed and weary
“I need your help.” She cries
And suddenly everything’s dreary

Time has passed and she’s onto stage 5
She’s lost in the world not knowing where to dive
She needs to find a job, a man, a house, and a car
Oh and of course money is the real star
She weeps alone in her dark apartment
Maybe freedom was not what she wanted

Stage 6… what a great time to be alive
She thinks she is so free without any guide
But little does she know
No peer is what freedom is comprised
Her husband and her and her four little kids
From soccer to piano to guitar and more
These things distract them from acknowledging her daily chore
“I do so much but no one cares, I try to help but you all just stare”
Night after night in screaming fights

Stage 7 is the last, the end of them all
Where life finally surrenders the brawl
As she takes her last breathe
And lets it out in one long sigh
She knows this is her time to die
Yet she is not sad or regretful
For she knows freedom is awaiting
Freedom comes when your soul’s at rest
Freedom comes only at death

Rebecca Latham ’19

The Seven Stages of a Book

A quest of nine, two young lovers,
seven stages of life
trapped between two covers:

Our hero begins his journey on a shelf,
squeezed between Hemingway and Wilde.
Carpeted in dust, lonely,
resembling a lost child.

A helpful buyer,
low and behold,
rescues our hero.
The two fly off into the cold.

He is jostled around
between a wallet and key,
before being thrown, roughly,
on to the vanity.

However, later that night,
tea warm in hand,
his spine is stretched,
his words are scanned.

This operation is repeated,
every night or other.
A week of bending, flexing,
His pages and his cover.

But he can feel it ending,
his pages wearing thin.
The cover closes,
another bookmark thrown in the bin.

Squeezed between Tolkien and Faulkner,
our hero is back on a ledge
Poised, waiting,
dust carpeting its edge.

Megan Kelly ’19

All the Day’s a Stage (based on William Shakespeare’s “All the World’s a Stage”)

All the day’s a stage
It begins at dawn, dark in the world
The seven phases of the day,
first the woken, drowsy, stumbling
Torn from slumber, almost sleeping tall
Then the morning like vibrant streaks across the sky
Brushing, washing, scrubbing, ready for the day
Step out the door, and meet the world
Driving, bussing, get to school,
Hitch their bags, heads down, all focused
Then comes the noon, a high sunshine
Relax, rejuvenate, replenish-
Halfway through a day and dragging
On towards the afternoon, of tiny snacks
And bells a-ringing, come stomping out anew
But then the evening hits them, of a
Tired, homework sort, pens and bags and pieces
Shove away, feel the day, it’s very near the end
And bringing up the glow and shine
Of a single star-like being
The parts and cogs– reboot, rebirth
It’s time for a new day

Ava Mar ’18


The smallest commonplaces act as lifejackets, pulling memories up from the depths of my mind. A car door closing, a light turning on, a car honking, a child yelling… I was here, but my mind wasn’t. It wasn’t the haunting they warned me about. Sometimes I think that would be easier; but, then I see guys huddled in corners, scared of the sound of their own footsteps. No, I can’t want that. Yet part of my mind kept pleading, begging the other part to concede. Concede to fear, to panic. But the boiling in my stomach wasn’t terror, it’s desire.
“Fletcher, would you like to share with the group?”
I lifted my head and looked around. I didn’t belong here.
“I don’t really have anything worth sharing, Ms. Barnet.”
“Come on, Fletch,” My head shot right, to a guy named Ian. Ian belonged here. If his eyes didn’t give it away, his grenade-shortened legs did the trick.
“I’m sorry. I think that my experience was pretty…unique.”
“Hate to break it to you, man, we all served in the same war. We were all there and—”
“Yeah, but it wasn’t bad for me.” That shut him up, and also earned me the eyes of every other person in the room.
“Wasn’t bad how, Fletcher?” Ms. Barnet was leaning towards me.
“It just wasn’t, okay? It stays with me. Every day. When I hear a door close, I’m back. When a light turns on too fast, I’m back. When I hear a kid yelling, I’m back.”
“It’s the same for—”
“NO IT’S NOT!” I was feeling anxious now, like a little kid waiting for a flu shot. “I’m not scared when I remember. I’m scared when I don’t. Because… I miss it.” Nobody spoke. I knew I had said too much. Of course they wouldn’t understand, it probably seemed like I’m insulting them.
“Fletcher,” Ms. Barnet’s voice was soft, urging me on, “Why don’t you explain to us what it was like for you to leave the war.”
I took a deep breath, but I couldn’t bear to raise my head or look anyone in the eye. “I guess it’s like trying to stay awake, even when your body wants to sleep. Part of you knows you need to sleep, but the other part can’t bear not being awake. Before I left, I was tired as hell, but I didn’t want it to end. Now that I’m home, well, I guess it’s like actually sleeping.” I looked around to see every pair of eyes on me, each etched with a mixture of pain and understanding. “But, when I’m asleep…I start to forget.”

Madison Kaplan ’16

Taken By the Wind

If you’re going to leave
Allow me to tell you all the things I’ve wanted to share-

I see the roaring clouds behind your mysterious eyes
The song of a bird floats through the air, even as you sigh

Under the willow tree is where I picture you in the summer,
Or as a drummer in the school marching band

Or do you rummage ‘round redwood giants
And tiptoe through tulips in the spring

You are found bound within the sound of a catchy tune
Your simplistic and optimistic outlook piercing through the clouds of negativity

I cannot let you float away like dandelion puffs,
Because the wind blew when I wasn’t ready to make my wish

Diamonds do not shine brighter than your smile,
Which is only bettered by the dimples on your cheeks

When you enter the room, the temperature rises
and I can feel the sound waves of your voice floating through the air

You are beautiful like a rose, but your thorns pierce-
You said that you would never let me be on my lonesome

But today I watched you set onto the platform
I stood as a bystander as my best friend stepped onto the train

I stood helplessly as your army green shoulders disappeared
Into the clustered sea of army jackets

Lucy Anastas ’19

From Earth to Humans (Down Below)

Dear children of the ground,
What’s the sound you’re making now?
First the rattle.
Then the rumbling.
Now an explosion that sends all tumbling.
Why the violence?
Why the wars?
What are sisters and brothers for?

Humankind- what a pathetic race!
I would cleanse myself with water
And rid you from my face
If only my waters, once blue,
Weren’t dyed with human blood and guts.

This is Earth to humankind:
End the violence, stop the bloodshed.
–Over and out.

Alexander Lo ’17

Lemon Tree

Sitting in a lemon tree,
Tasting the tang of sour
Smooth bark very slippery
I had climbed for half an hour
A gentle breeze blows softly
As I spy the sun-baked sea
A lazy cloud floats o’er me
As I slowly fall asleep

Anthony Mark ’18

FirstsLessons in Faith

Come close my child
Listen to the language of the Almighty.
Come close my child
See the strength of love for all humanity.
Come close my child
Smell the faithful’s sweat and tears in perpetuity.
Come close my child
Taste the blood and body of eternity.
Come close my child
Feel the force of God the Almighty.

Michael Lundgren ’18


We each have our own language of thought
Each have our own dance of morality
Each have our own story plot
In our own created mentality
Language alone cannot carry it all
The complex yet common capacity
Ideas perish as does the night fall
Day’s unending race, mind’s tenacity
Only through the genuine connection
Of pure and vulnerable empathy
Can we catch each other’s intention
Understand the mystery of each melody
Although the world may never hear my song
Our symphony’s one harmony rings

Ava Nordling ’18


I know that face. I don’t remember how or why, but I just do. I’m in the The Armadillo right now, a hole in the wall bar downtown that everyone has discovered. I’m sitting at the far right hand corner of the bar next to some putz who’s been gabbing to me for the past hour and a half about his retirement plan. He thinks this will turn me on somehow. I’ve ordered about four drinks now hoping that he’ll catch on that this isn’t the kind of conversation that a sober person would want to partake in. I’m kind enough to keep myself physically present in this engagement, but I let my mind and eyes wander elsewhere.
There are two wall-sized mirrors in The Armadillo that are parallel to each other; one is on the side of the bar, one is on the side of the corridor that leads to the street. It’s a very spacious room. I look at the bar wall, surveying the room for eye candy or a sign of someone that can keep me entertained for a little bit. I see the same beatniks and self-loathing bougies who frequent this joint like it’s Burroughs’ grave or something of the sort. All of a sudden, something gets me. It’s this face. I can only see the left side of it. She’s far away; I can barely make out her complexion. Her brown hair is beginning to grey; wrinkles are slowly wrapping around the side of her face like a spider web. Her emerald dress is only for special occasions, but it is very worn-out. The allure of its velvet material was lost when kids start calling dresses like these trendy. Her arms are very tense, holding herself down; if she moves them up or lets them loose, she will fall to the ground. I can’t stop thinking of where I know her from! She just has one of those faces. I’m looking and looking at her, and then I start to try to analyze her. Like this’ll help me somehow. She’s sad, lonely; she’s just a reflection of somebody that she used to be. This makes me feel moody and sad. I want to get a batter look at her because maybe I really can help her.
I rudely interrupt my suitor’s spiel about the decline of institutionalism to say that I must be on my way. I fully enter the room looking around, but she’s gone. A panic rushes through me as if a mother has lost her newborn child. I walk to the center of the room, bleakly lightened, and survey the decay. I do a full turn and find myself looking right into the bar mirror. I see my reflection. More importantly, though, I see what’s beyond my reflection. The back of her head. She’s behind me. I swiftly turn myself around and look into the bar mirror to find that she has once again found a way behind me. I tell myself that I could play this game all day, so I end this nonsense. I walk out of the bar and return home.

Spencer Collantes ’17

Me: Past, Present, Future

This is for the girls who act like queens who only care about themselves,
and the guys who, like the girls, are always needing my help.
This is for the people who act like they care.
Only in it so that they can get a share.
I know all of this may sound a bit unfair,
but I still love the haters, ’cause moments like this are rare.

This song’s for my grandma’s and grandpa’s alike,
my mom and my dad who continue to be my light,
my brother and sister, even though we fight,
and also myself, for I love my life.
My teachers who push me to the limit
and my God who reminds me I’m in it to win it.

I’d like to thank my music, for keeping me inspired
and my high school, teaching me to spark my inner fire.
The singers, stars, and celebs in their cars,
reminding me that my future isn’t too far.
To my friends and their everlasting loyalty.
I’d like to tell them they mean everything to me.

To the fights and the quarrels, for making me break a sweat
once in a while (or has it been everyday yet?).
The sins and the hardships for teaching me that
my life is just beginning, and there’s no reason to be sad.
Lastly, I thank the world for showing me how to live
and teaching me always that I have so much to give.

So now I leave this song in your hands
and ask you to be thankful whenever you can
because whenever you start something or wish it to end,
you’ll use this song to remind you to mend
all your past relationships, desires, and wants
and love them anew and make your own song.

Jonathan Lo ’17

Goodnight Moon

I haven’t touched the harrowed
pages of this book
Since you stopped feeling the words and
Stories and letters that make up mine,
Since you put me down and closed me
Without a second glance,
(It was easy)
Since your long, elongated fingers stopped
Caressing my worn-down spine.

And yet, what was I afraid of
In getting left behind?
Not of fights, nor imperfection, or infidelity,
No, the fear stemmed from fear
Of our story simply slipping away
In the vast dunes of time.

My open pages seemed to bathe in
Newfound light, they glowed bright-white
And pure by the love of the Moon.
How sad to see your soft rays replaced
With an eternal bookmark,
And an impenetrable promise that said,
“Let us take a rain check, soon,”
As if you would come back in the rain.
I wished for a god damn monsoon.

Oh, the most painful of pains.
To realize you never saw the allusions or
Allegories hidden in the margins,
Hidden in plain sight.

To finally know the significance of an
Hourglass, of time’s slow fight,
To know that change comes everyday
In the hands of a sunrise, and now,
I no longer need the Moon’s light.

To accept that even though I now
Feel more closed, unfinished, and
Forgotten than ever,
In the grand scheme of forever,
We were never even the tiniest grain of sand.

Rose Joseph ’16

number one

that man is a menace
he would so quickly throw away
the heart
of the holiest of angels
as one does the first slice
of a loaf of bread

he will take as much as he can
until nothing is sacred but
what is left of the air in your lungs
(you will wish you could give more)

this is my final warning
realize that you are phenomenal
guard your heart with
the ferocity of a thousand lions

your time is gold
you, yourself, are priceless

Silvia Jiménez-Montano ’17

The Mockingbird

Surely as the day goes on
As the mockingbird sings it song
As the rivers flow, seas toss and turn
Someone always falls
And someone always burns
They find a new friend
Love comes to a bitter end
But the partner continues on
And the mockingbird finds a new song
But this leaves a scar upon the heart
That was not there upon the start
But the partner still moves on
And the mockingbird finds a new song

Hannah FitzGerald ’19


In one ear persistent pounding of the radio
In the other grating music of the subway
Full of its satisfied silence
And steel cacophony
The drone of tired voices announcing

I like the train
Or at least the idea of it
I like the soft yet powerful thumps of the skid on the irons
The metronomic whistle audible from my room
Miles away

It can take you miles away
But the lowering of the poles
Reminds me of a guillotine waiting to execute an unsuspecting car
I have a fear of becoming stuck in the middle of the tracks
no turning or moving
just watching the oncoming bullet
Grow larger and faster and louder and BOOM

It hits me
The train will come for us all
One day or another
For now it is imminent
Only revealed by a distant whistle
Today may not be the day
But just wait

On the bench
That one over there
It’s only five minutes away
Scan your card
Prepare to board
The wind rushes forward, swift and whirling
The brakes screech
Doors whooshing open:
Where to?

Caroline Joseph ’16

The Radical Beauty of Our Hair

Our hair has its own radical beauty
While conducting spiral revolutions
Making us sistahs Nubian cuties
Creating cultural contributions

Everyday what it takes is not quick
Can I treat it like a glorious crown?
But when it’s done, it’s almost like magic
I think it is right, either up or down

It does what it does – no explanation
From Afros to braids to dreadlocks to curls
It screams style with a loud exclamation
A celebration for every black girl

It proclaims where our legacy presides
And pays homage to our ancestral pride

Jazara Metcalf ’18


The pretty girl down the street talks to me in
Fragmented snapshots,
Fifth-hand rumors and shattered bones that heal
with the touch of a beckoning finger.

She lies in the looming grass of her backyard and mentions
she never had a favorite blanket as a little girl.
She shook with cold at night
but didn’t want to say so.
The rumbling echo of music from the basement rocked her to sleep,
and Mama’s champagne-bubble laughter was her lullaby.

Ten years later she jolts awake
Pacing all night
awaiting normalcy’s knock on her bedroom door
Sleepwalkers roam the early morning streets
Living is easiest with eyes closed.

She thinks she will get the love she never got before by
filling the space with a warm body next to hers and
she’s never known how to go one day
without seeking love that no one wants to give her.

I watched her
run away from home to get the peace and quiet to
rip herself apart as she pleases
I watched her go from cruel to broken to
both all with a
picture-perfect smile plastered on her face.

And, as she twirls her pretty hair in her
Pretty hands and
parts her pretty lips to speak I catch her
In the act of shattering, and they scream,

“I am being eaten from the inside out.”

Ali Pond ’19


They claim that They want to meet me
Connect with something long lost
So They visit
Patting themselves on the back
Boasting over Their five dollar figurines

Here’s the problem:
i’m not a simple aesthetic

But maybe that’s what Humans miss most of all
The thrill of disorder
Dare i say terror?
Anything to distract Them from that desk job that They pretend to love

Everyone secretly wants a natural disaster
Not because it’s fun
But because it’s new
A, granted, macabre chance to start over

Even then They pick and choose
Wanting the idea without the pain
But it’s a package deal
What kind of arrogance makes You think that You’re exempt?

So, please, fawn over me
Let me watch the same eyes with different faces gaze day after day
But don’t fool Yourself:
Maybe what You’re missing isn’t something that You’re ready to find

Caroline Joseph ’16

To the Hills!

Run for the hills,
You merry adventurers.
Swaddle yourselves in jackets with fur linings
That shield your ripening noses
From the evening winds.
Fight those winds.
Fight the powers that be!
Run, run up that hill
Until you can taste the blood in your throat
And feel your gums pulsing from the cold.
Look back.
Look back and see your friends behind you
Clamoring towards the heavens
And stumbling in the dirt.
You are liberated,
You lost boys,
You seekers of the evening.
Run, climb, give a helping hand.
And in the name of Possibility,
Head for the hills!

Claire Fenerty ’16

My Letter to You

You are new this year,
And everyone likes you…
But me.

You confuse me,
You lock me out of projects
And never let me finish my test.

You exit out of my classes
And never seem to follow a calendar.

You try so hard for everyone to like you,
You put pandas on your screen and
Try to make everything colorful.

I can not stand you.
Because of you it takes me hours to find my homework.
Because of you I never see when papers are due.

And sadly I’m stuck with you for the next four years.

To canvas.

Juliana daRoza ’18

Winter’s Morning

O let me be like the larks
Who sing melodiously for the sake of it
Whose songs and harmonies pierce through the dull morning
I am only a listener
The wax myrtle delights me with its aroma gently wafting by
Its red berries wear nothing but the morning dew
They are perfect and I long to be like them
Or the magnificent ocean
Its waves shout at me and invite me to adventure
I wish to accept the invitation
I bathe in the sun’s vigilant eye
It is sentry over all of creation
I am part of creation
I live under the sun
And I am not going anywhere
So let me sing like the larks
Let my existence be as perfect as the wax myrtle
Let me accept the call of adventure from the mighty sea
But most of all let me truly live

Joe Lerdal ’17

An Ode To Unexpected Love

You are as lovely as a chocolate rose
With your rich caramel highlights
Along your curved body.

In pictures, you needn’t pose,
For every time I look at you,
You seem elegant and fine.

From the many, you I chose
In that dark and dusty shop
With scarlet velvet carpets.

I could never suppose
That my love for you would
Turn into this.

It is my job to expose
Your inner sound,
Even if I have to drag it out of you.

Your music resonates from my head to toes,
And I love each note we make.
Legato is so lovely,

It sounds as if it were coming from meadows,
And staccato is the sound
Of an army marching through a quaint town.

God only knows
How much I love you so.
Sweet Adelvice, I will never tire of your sound.

Let me propose
That we never part
Because my heart would

Painfully decompose.

Sophia Leon Guerrero ’19

I can still remember the day I brought you into this world.

A tiny seedling cradled in my tiny hand, I laid you down in a bed of soil

and blanketed you with water, fertilizer, and love. Every day I ventured out to your little

plot and sang the stories of the land, hoping that you would learn the trill of my voice.

And then I waited, praying that you would plant your roots in the little area that I had

chosen to be our home. And then I saw you again, but I was surprised. You were no

longer the tiny seed I had so long cared for. Your little head poked out, and while you

weren’t used to the brightness, you still leaned into it as much as you could. From that

moment you didn’t stop. You began to branch out and make friends while I just

continued to give you the nutrients you needed to maintain your energy.

Soon you were the most popular one in the entire neighborhood.

Everyone came to admire your beauty and

your warm embrace. Now I can’t even

see your head anymore. You stand

among the clouds, reaching to the

heavens and extending your reach

to the ends of the earth. You have

blossomed, my child, but I am afraid

I cannot join you any longer. Even

now, I can only watch you from the

window, hoping that you have not

yet forgotten my gentle touch. While

I wither away, I hope that I can hold

you in my arms one last time. You

have your whole life ahead of you,

and while I won’t be around for all of it,

just know that I will always love you,

My dear, my darling, my little seedling.

Allyson Abad ’16

on gardening

weeds will grow regardless
of whether you want them or not
the only way to get rid of them
is to uproot them
or all at once
it is tedious work
they will inevitably return
(this time with more vigor)
you have the comfort of knowing
the strength and resilience
hidden in the wrinkles
of your hands

Silvia Jiménez-Montano ’17


here lies a voice
with a Pentecostal tongue
that lives in all bodies and
embeds in our lungs

the voice acted as a schoolyard friend
who held my hand and danced across the hopscotch
every star in our sky was a dream for the future
as we twirled in innocence

my soulful city once resembled Atlantis
deep below the water and farther from heaven
many were crying and many were screaming
yet I heard only silence, for my reliable voice had abandoned me for the stars

I could not speak without the voice
yet created my own rivers into the bayous
I longed to move and continue on
yet lost my heart beneath the broken floorboards

my voice left me alone in a sinking world
I no longer looked to the stars

Above me

Above the stars

flew my voice
away from the darkness and into the sun
the voice of my life shone onto millions
while I looked to the floor
my voice took to the world

Lauren Cueto ’17

Half A Lifetime

Half a lifetime here I go
Fast or slow don’t know where I’ll go
Die too young and age too old
Baby now and tomorrow grandpa Joe
I’m just living half a lifetime you see
No fun for me
I’ll die I promise too young to be
Go to my funeral then you’ll see
I just lived half a lifetime
The next day,
I’m too old to do anything I would please
Oh life sucks when you live too old
Oh life sucks when you live so young
So what about half a lifetime?
Half a lifetime here I go again
Fast or slow don’t know where I’ll go
Living half a lifetime is good for me
No matter what I’m good you see

Jennifer Lopez Garcia ’19

Black Enough

Milk chocolate
Half and Half
Black enough
Some people think I’m not black enough
I used to think that too
I have a white mom
And caramel instead of chocolate skin
I didn’t fit the stereotypes
Or at least not enough
But tell me I’m not black enough now
Tell me I’m too pale
Tell me I’m white washed
Tell that to 8 year old me
Who was called the n-word for the first time
Standing in line at the museum of the African Diaspora with my grandmother
Tell that to 11 year old me
Who realized there was a reason
Store clerks always followed me around
Tell that to 13 year old me
Who was asked for the first time
“Nice hair! Is that a weave?”
Tell that to me now
As I avoid looking at colleges in the south
Afraid I might actually like one
Tell that to my brother
Who is always overly respectful to cops
Tell that to my father
Is shunned by his father in law simply for the color of his skin
Tell that to my grandmother
Who was dragged to the back of the bus
So tell me I’m not black enough
Tell that to my caramel face

Campbell Simmons ’17