28 May 2009

Not the First Time This Has Crossed My Mind

Your impertinence is pestilent
If I were you, I would repent –
And I’m not even a Christian.
But damn it, son, your ways prevent
Anything significant
From exiting your orifice.
You might as well have shoved your fist
Down your fucking throat, and this
Is getting quite vexatious.
You illustrate a mannerism
Of – what do we call it? – masochism.
And honestly your malice
For every single one of us
Exasperates and agitates
And aggravates, infuriates
Not only I, but he and she
And we can all agree on this:
You’re pretty much a selfish bitch.

Vocabulary Story (Yes, I know what soup is)

It was 6:32 a.m. when Amyrose's mom knocked on her bedroom door to wake her up. When there was no response, Amy's mom forcefully turned the door knob, pushed the port forward and stomped to the end of the bed. "Get up and get ready for school," Mrs. Stephens said. Amy simply replied with a languid groan. "Get your ass up," Mrs. Stephens bellowed without restraint. "Mom, I'm sick!" Amy pulled her comforter over her face, but she wasn't sick at all. She feigned an illness in order to get away with skipping school today. "I'm sorry, baby! Let me fix you some soup," said Mrs. Stephens. She left the room and fixed a large bowl of that liquid food of vegetables and chicken broth for Amy. When Mrs. Stephens returned to Amy's room, Amy was sitting up, texting and laughing. "You're not sick," exclaimed Mrs. Stephens. Without a moment of silence after her mom's statement, Amy quickly declared her hatred for her. Amy's rancor for her mother has always been prominent, though. So the statement came as no surprise. In a swift and impassive motion, Mrs. Stephens grabbed Amy's arm and pulled her out of her bed. She mad her apathy for Amy's "sickness" evident when she threw her book bag at her, left the room and yelled, "We're going!"

Amy still refused to go to school. She had a good reason, though. Mrs. Stephens stomped back into the room once more, only to find Amy texting again. Mrs. Stephens ripped the phone from her hands and began to go through the messages. "I'm sorry," one read, from a boy named A.J. "Are you in trouble?" Mrs. Stephens wanted to know what could cause the questioned trouble. "What did you do?" Amy ignored her mom. Mrs. Stephens, vehement and full of various emotions, bolted to her computer to email the school. To her surprise, there was already a message in her inbox that read:

Dear Mrs. Stephens,
We have been worried about Amy a lot lately, and we wanted to make sure everything was all right at home. We had heard word that your daughter was involved in impudent "extracurricular" activities. So, we took the matter into our own hands and checked her locker and found multiple media of memorandum; we found texts, emails and passed notes. There were several recipients and correspondents. I don't know how to say this lightly, but we found a whip in her locker and erotic notes between Amy and a few different boys. Obviously, flagellation is entirely inappropriate, especially on school grounds. I wish you would speak to her about her decisions. Hopefully you can influence her and guide her in a better direction.
Thank you,
Dr. LaBorde

In amazement, Mrs. Stephens slowly stood up and walked to Amy's room. Amy still sat in her bed, looking directly at the wall ahead of her. Mrs. Stephens sat on the bed and a tear slid down her cheek. "Why did your principal email me?" Amy dropped her head in shame. "What the HELL is your problem," Mrs. Stephens screamed. Amy jumped up from her bed and Mrs. Stephens followed. The two entangled themselves in a heated feud. "You're nothing but a whore," said Mrs. Stephens, lugubrious due to her daughter's lack of self respect. Amy retorted with another "I hate you" and slapped her mom right across the face. In order to prostrate Amy, Mrs. Stephens pushed her to the floor, which knocked the wind out of her. Mrs. Stephens stood, motionless for a while. She had a "vision," so to speak. In prescience, she saw her daughter waving goodbye and climbing out of the window. Terrified of the possible events to come, Mrs. Stephens picker her daughter up off of the floor and hugged her. Reluctant to reciprocate the action, Amy pulled away, reticent.

A door slammed. Amy and Mrs. Stephens both hesitantly looked toward the hallway. Their neighbor, Topaz Ross had broken in. "I heard screaming and other clamour. Is everything all right?" Amy ran and hugged Topaz. "I HATE her," said Amy. Mrs. Stephens rebutted with a harsh glare and a raised fist. "Come on you guys! Why are you fighting?! Please stop," requested Topaz, in an attempt to intercede and put an end to the quarrel. "I refuse to merely let go of what Amy has done and how badly she has embarrassed me," said Mrs. Stephens. "You are rather obstinate, Mrs. Stephens. So I wouldn't expect anything else," replied Topaz.

Topaz released Amy from her refreshing hug. Before anything happened and before anyone said anything, Amy ran toward the window, lifted the handle and sat on the pane. Topaz and Mrs. Stephens both stood, immobile, filled to the brim with fear. "Don't do it, Amy," said the two in unison. To prove she was indomitable, though, she sprouted wings and jumped. Shocked to no end, Mrs. Stephens and Topaz dropped their jaws, turned toward one another and fainted. An hour later, they woke up, tied to chairs, with double cheeseburgers in their laps. "What the hell," exclaimed Topaz. "After I left," said Amy, "I felt bad, so I stopped by some fast food place and got you guys some food." Mrs. Stephens and Topaz fainted once more and they never woke up again. Amy killed them by gagging them with their cheeseburgers.

A Dead Beaver and Some Inquisitive Thoughts

I spent Friday night and Saturday night at a friend’s house. The friend? It doesn’t matter who. It was a great time, though. Today, I had to come back to the dorm for study hall. I wasn’t even supposed to leave this weekend, but the duty teacher was cool enough to allow me to get away from this hell hole for a little bit of peace. My friend’s sister generously offered to drive me back to campus, because sadly enough, I do not have a car just yet. Oh well. On the way back, we listened to the Beatles and sung every word to every song. I love the Beatles so much. The last song we listened to was “Love Me Do,” which happens to be one of my all time favourites. Right as we got to the chorus, we drove over the railroad track – the one by the Sara Lee factory. I was so into the song that nothing could distract me. At least, that’s how it usually would have been. But just as I looked to my left, over the steering wheel, I saw…a dead beaver.

“Where did that come from??” My friend’s sister looked in the direction which my left index finger so fervidly pointed. When she finally set her eyes on the road kill, she came to an immediate stop. “What the hell is a beaver doing over here?” she asked. Obviously, we couldn’t run over and pick it up, but we were so fascinated in the little animal. Where did it come from? Why have I never seen a live beaver around here? I wonder if someone dropped it there to make it seem like there were beavers around. Who would go through that trouble, though? That’d be dumb. Maybe….maybe it’s not really a beaver! Maybe it’s an alien. Yeah. Wait, that sounds kind of dumb too. What if it walked all the way from some clan of beavers? What were its intentions? Did it know where it was headed? Probably not. Better yet, what was its motivation? Perhaps it was some anxt-driven teenager who just needed some time away from his (or her) parents. Poor thing. Karma is a bitch. What if he (or she) was trying to prove a point to his (or her) parents? He…yeah, let’s just call it a ‘he.’ He probably didn’t plan on staying gone too long; just long enough to scare the ‘rents.

What if that’s what really happened? That’s so unfair. I used to want to run away from home so badly. What if I had? What if I had and I had gotten run over by some careless driver? That wouldn’t have proven much of anything. I’m so glad I never ran away. That’s such a terrible way to die – getting hit by a car and left for scavengers. In a few days, bugs, birds and some crazy rodents will have stripped him of his flesh and left his intestines to decay. No one, except maybe I, will remember him. Even if he had died of old age, no human would remember him. It’s just an animal, right? Wrong! Well, maybe that is right. When I die, a few people will mourn, maybe some old high school friends will send my family some flowers, but will anyone really care after all is said and done? I highly doubt it. We, as humans, are given maybe 70 or 75 years on Earth now-a-days. Some of the lucky ones get more, and those who are not so lucky get fewer. Say I die when I’m 80. That gives me until the year 2073. That amount of time will fly with respect to eternity. And when I finally do die, then what? My family and friends will hold a funeral, people will be sad for a little while, et cetera, et cetera. Give or take a hundred years afterward, and no one will remember who Aliya Ilsa Smith was. That name probably won’t be of much importance to anyone by 2173.

What’s the point of my existence? What use am I to the rest of the world if my body will only eventually give out on me and force me to die? And in the end, if my existence is worthless, what happens after death? What will happen to my conscience? It cannot possibly die, because it was never “alive.” Then, if you think about it, I can never technically die, either. Matter can neither be created nor destroyed, so when my body deteriorates along with the coffin in which it shall lie in about 64 years, that matter will be reincarnated. And this has nothing to do with beliefs; that’s strictly science. The circle of life, if you will. The matter which makes up my body today could have been that of a tree centuries prior to my birth. My conscience, though, is a different story. What is it? What is a conscience? It works my brain, which controls the rest of my body, but what runs my conscience? Damn, this is confusing. Aside from that endless circle of disorientation and onto its servants. What about emotions? Why do they change so often? Why do they exist at all? What is the point? This sounds so depressing, but in reality, it’s just a whole lot of ranting on nothing too special. All I want is for something to answer these questions. I guess when it all comes down to it, life is a huge, dense ball of confusion and I’ll never have the answers to any of my relatively deep questions. I’m going to die soon anyway, right? For now, I just want to know what the hell is up with that beaver.

I've Got a Good Memory

Have you ever had a recurring dream? Or have you ever had a dream that played through several nights as a story of some sort? Let me tell you, they’re pretty weird. At the same time, though, they’re so cool. It’s like reading a suspenseful book. You don’t know what will happen when you pick it back up. I used to have those dreams all the time when I was about six or so. When I think back on it, I wish I could be six again. Children’s imaginations are so much more wild and fascinating than that of someone my age. I am still creative, but it takes so much more effort to spit out some great idea than it would have when I was less than ten years of age. I remember a specific dream of mine which continued for about a week. It started off with my family and me in a museum. Well, I knew it was supposed to be a museum in the dream, but it was really just a blank white hallway. At the end of the hall, a blue light shined out of a door on the right. My family and I sped up to take a peak inside and it was the weirdest thing ever. We walked in through the door and on a white leather couch sat Tony the Tiger.

I was so happy because I knew all the words to his song and I happily ran up to him and began to sing it. He simply smiled and waited for the song to end to tell us to put our belongings in the cubbies on the wall. I put my white blanket and my shoes in one at the bottom; I was too short to reach any of the upper shelves. My parents and Iain put their things in cubbies as well. Jake was still only about a year old, so my mom had him propped up in her arms. He had no need for a cubby. When we all turned around, there were four large red cushions on the floor on which Tony insisted we sit. We flopped down on them and Tony stepped down from his couch and sat on the floor. He asked us about how our day had been and it had only been satisfactory…until we got to meet him!

After nearly two hours of just sitting and talking to dear Tony, he stood up in a kind of militant manner – good posture, head up, etc. – and told us we had thirty seconds to gather our belongings and leave the room. We were initially perplexed and thought it was just a joke, but then he started to count down. We bolted toward the cubbies, grabbed our things and ran toward the door. We were just out of the room when I realized I had left my blanket inside. There was no way in hell I was going to leave it, so I ran back for it, but once I finally had it in my hands, time was up. A two-foot thick glass door dropped. My heart dropped along with it. I was stuck inside a white room with some aberrant talking tiger. I think that was justification enough for any fear I had. I banged on the transparent barrier, and my parents reciprocated. There was nothing that could even begin to tamper with the door’s stability. I was actually trapped.

Fifteen minutes went by and my family finally gave up. They waved, blew a kiss and left. A tear ran down my face and a few followed rapidly after it. It was a race…literally. There was a close up, in the dream, of my tears trying to “out-slide” each other, for lack of a better word. When the dream zoomed back out, so to speak, I slowly turned around. Tony sat on the couch, reading a newspaper. I yelled at him to get him to open the door, but he ignored my request. I forcefully stomped toward him and took his paper from him. He yanked it back and continued to read. After that, I woke up. I didn’t know what to think of the dream except that it was all just a dream – thank whatever is holy. I don’t know what I would have done if my parents had actually abandoned me when Tony the Tiger could have killed me. Well, the next night, the dream continued to play, as if I had a movie on “pause.”

Without hesitation, I took the paper back from Tony and ripped it to shreds. Infuriated, he stormed toward me, got “all up in my grill” – as the kids would say these days – and roared. Along with his stressed vocal vomit came a large, orange hairball. The wadded up fur fell on my bare feet. I screamed and kicked him in the face. Bad idea. I knew I shouldn’t have done that, so I immediately ran to the other side of the room, curled up in a ball and prayed he wouldn’t hurt me. He got on all fours and walked toward me like a normal tiger would if he were on the prowl. I shook so much out of sheer terror that someone could have mistaken my nervous habit as a seizure. Again, just as he was about to pounce, I woke up with a cold sweat. I was terrified. For a few more nights, I dreamt of being in that room with Tony the Tiger and we continued to fight. My parents visited from time to time, but they made no attempt to get me out. It was all over to them. The last night, after eight or nine nights of the story, Tony let me out of the room. It was as if nothing were wrong. Just a change of heart, I suppose. When I left the museum and walked outside, the streets were empty. Everything was completely desolate. I was alone. I yelled just to see if anyone would respond. There wasn’t even an echo. I got one response – Tony chuckled a bit behind me. I turned around, he leaped and then…
I woke up.

20 May 2009


When I was about four or five years old, I had a terrible habit of lying when the truth would fit better. When I realized the effect it had on people, I broke myself of it. Why would someone test the possibility of losing the trust of a loved one? How could anyone be comfortable with himself or herself if he or she has lies to his or her family and friends? I know I would not be as close to as many people as I am if I weren’t trustworthy or honest with them. After my massive puerile realization, I promised myself I would never lie again unless it were required to do so to save the life of a family member, a friend or myself. I broke that promise; last night, I lied to a friend as well as myself. I took a night leave to a friend’s house last night so we could watch Gypsy, the movie version of the musical. We wanted to watch it for a heads up for the possible musical next year (I might get a lead roll). A boy drove me to my friend’s house, because he will be in the musical as well. I used to like the boy.

When we got to my friend’s house, we all went down to the basement to watch the movie and for the first time, I saw that she has a miniature movie theatre in the lowest level of her house. I was flabbergasted when I saw it, but there were only three nice seats and they were taken. I sat down in the back of the room, just on a regular wicker chair. It wasn’t very comfortable, but I just wanted to watch the movie. When the boy saw that I had sat away from everyone, he smoothly exclaimed, “I’ll share.” The words, though simple and seemingly without thought, were an obvious invitation to more than just a seat. I happily took the offer, though, and climbed into the chair. He surprised me and showed me it was a recliner, which apparently gave him an excuse to wrap his arm around my waist. My arms were crossed, my head faced directly in front of me, and my legs were stiff and straight. The light left the room and someone turned on the wide screen television.

As soon as the movie started, my friend texted me to make sure that nothing would happen between the boy and me. In reassurance, I merely replied, “Nothing will happen.” After about three minutes, the boy’s hand found its way to mine and our fingers interlaced. My heart, anxious for what would happen next, raced with anticipation. I tried to ignore his actions, but he moved closer to me. I laid my head on his shoulder and he placed his own on my head. A minute passed and I felt his lips, pursed, just in front of my crown. It was sweet. I placed my left hand on his chest. His heart rate was twice as rapid as my own. He was nervous too. Nearly an hour went by and finally a dear friend and his wife arrived. As we had promised them earlier, we stopped the movie so we could start it over for them. To be polite, the boy and I stood up and offered the seat to our dear friend’s wife. She courteously accepted the offer and reclined in the chair herself.

The boy and I took two wicker chairs from the back of the room, set them by each other, turned the lights back off and sat down. Five minutes passed and again, the chairs were uncomfortable. I gave the boy a glance and in return, he provided his own. We could read each other’s thoughts in an instant and we both quietly and slowly half-way stood up, pushed our chairs back and found spots on the floor. It was cold and the space between us was too great for our liking. He scooted over to where I sat, but my friend’s seat was in the way. So I moved over so that the boy could see through the space between two of the recliners. For another five minutes, I watched the movie. It was already a part we had seen, but I still wanted to watch. I finally caught him, out of my peripheral vision, paying no attention to the screen, but rather to me. I was surprised, but I turned my head and looked up. Our eyes met and he placed his arm, once again, around my waist. He pulled my body closer to his. Our cheeks brushed. My heart sped up again. His heart sped up again. Our eyes, still set in a fixed position towards the others’, stayed motionless while I lifted my hand to his chin and he ran his fingers through my hair. The movie continued to play, but I was too enthralled by the moment for anything else to distract me. He leaned in and gently rested his lips on mine. I felt him smile. I smiled back.

My friend turned around. “You WHORES,” she yelled. She seemed disappointed. I pointed my face at the screen. The boy turned my head back towards his and continued to kiss me. Just before my friend turned back around, I managed to detach myself from his grip. He recognized that I wanted to stop, so we watched the movie. It was still a repeat of what we had seen forty-five minutes prior. I went to the bathroom and when I came out, I saw the boy’s reflection in the microwave door, so I turned the corner to see why he was in there. “I offered to get *my friend* a drink,” he said with a subtle smirk. I walked nearer and knew why he had really left the room. He grabbed by hands, wrapped them around his neck and, yet again, kissed me. I didn’t reject his actions, but I knew it was wrong. My friend exited the room to find us in the kitchen, doing what she least wanted us to do.

I ran out of the kitchen, into my friend’s bedroom and hid under the covers. The boy went back into the theatre and my friend found me in her bed, afraid of her reaction. To my surprise, she was not angry. Instead, she was concerned. She didn’t care that I had gone against my initial claim to not do anything with the boy. She only wanted to keep me from getting hurt, which is understandable. We talked and talked. The boy opened the door to my friend’s room, poked his head through the space between the door and the frame, and asked if we were all right. We both nodded. He and I exchanged a grin and he knew to leave. My friend and I talked some more and we came to the conclusion that people do things even if they know the consequences will be bad. Temptation is too good sometimes. We hopped off the bed and returned to the theatre to watch the movie. We were too late; our dear friends paused the movie to go outside and smoke.

The boy and I sat down in separate recliners and talked it over. Everything was fine between us, so he offered a spot in his hand for mine to lie, and I accepted. Ten minutes flew by and our dear friends reentered the house to resume watching the film. We hopped back out of our seats for our friends. The light left the room once more and the movie carried on. After another hour, the movie was over and it was time to leave. I gathered my phone and my bag off of the cream colored rug, put on a hat and waited by the door. The boy swept his hand against mine to comfort me. It worked temporarily. We said good night to our friends and walked to his car. The ride back to the dorm was silent. It wasn’t awkward, but words refused to escape either of our mouths. He parked in front of the quad and we sat for a minute, still quiet. I picked up my things off the floor of his car and before I opened the door, I leaned in to kiss him one more time. He took the kiss and gave me one back. I got out of the car, got my book bag out of the trunk and walked away. He told me to text him. Later on, I did. But between the gravel of the parking lot and the jammed key hole of the dorm door, I could only think about my friend. I lied to her. I lied to myself. I thought I could hold back, but I’m weaker than I thought. My friend forgave me, and I want to forgive myself. That will take some time.

01 May 2009

Unreasonable Fears

The grass was wet, as it always is at 5:48 in the morning, after the dew had set on the fresh spring blades. I stood, immobile for a split second, almost drowning in my tiredness. I don’t know why I was so fatigued; I had gotten a good eight hours of sleep. I didn’t remember my dreams, though, but I guess that’s a positive thing. When I was stable, I looked around at the branches of trees, petals of flowers, the hair on my own head, all ever so slightly brushed by a cool breeze. I glanced at my phone. 5:50. “Uh oh.” I needed to get over to the track, but something didn’t feel right. Something was offset. “I sounded the alarm.” Just as the words tenderly hit my trembling lips, a shadow emerged from my peripheral vision. Without a thought, I set off, running. Over the one and a half feet tall brick wall, barely hitting the sidewalk for fear of being caught if I were too slow, down the stairs, platform, down the stairs? No. I slid down the railing of the second set of stairs. I was not fast enough on my own. I needed more – anything to increase my speed. Across the paved tar; a leap over the stream, to avoid the bridge, under which anyone could have been hiding, waiting for my arrival. No “legitimate” clues or motives for my fear, but something was behind me. I know it. 5:51. I bolted across the rocky path, towards the tunnel. Not the tunnel.

I veered away from the sub-road and swiftly climbed the rock wall and I was filled to the brim with terror. Something caught my shirt. Maybe a rock, maybe that shadow. I needed to get to the top. I tugged my clothes back from whatever had taken a hold of them, and my shirt ripped. “Whatever. It’s old.” So I continued to the top. A glimpse left. A glimpse right. No cars. Just that damn shadow, still inching closer to the heel of my shoe. I darted to the opposing side. “What if it’s a robber?” No. That’s illogical. Why would he chase me? He wanted more than material possessions. “A monster?” Maybe. Still too vague. 5:53. I hopped over the bushes, nearly flew down the relatively steep hill, and landed. The shadow stood, motionless. I could feel its presence. “The track.” I ran to the half-opened metal gate of the track. “Why would something want to chase me around here? It will know I only intended to run.” 5:54. I started to jog around the red, cushiony surface. The shadow became more prominent. “Why won’t it just leave me alone?!” My face was, at that point, dripping with sweat. 5:55. “I need to get away.” The shadow was chasing me, and closer and closer. It swept across my heels and now, almost the soles of my shoes. 5:56. In an instant, I accelerated. 5:57. Faster. 5:58. Faster. 5:59. Up.

6:00. I no longer felt my feet hitting the ground. I still ran. Maybe I had “runner’s high.” I love runner’s high. No. It wasn’t that. I closed my eyes. I looked back and saw something I would not in a million years have expected. The earth. It was about nine feet below me. Maybe ten. Dawn broke. The shadow had disintegrated. I was so relieved. I had gotten away from that thing and I was safe. I was still in the air, though. “What the hell?” I embraced the obscurity for a while…and then, I opened my eyes. I had had my eyes closed. “Was I dreaming?” I was by the gate’s half-opened door again. “Maybe I should get back to the dorm.” I jogged back, still a bit confused by what happened. “Was I really flying?” I closed my eyes again to see if the same feeling would occur. Nothing. I did not feel as if I were flying. Back on the rocks, over the stream to avoid the bridge, across the pavement, up the stairs, at the door. I pulled my keys from my pocket, slammed the wrong one in the key hole, just ready to get inside. I found the matching key and carefully unlocked the door. The alarm had never been set the preceding night. My typical morning run was obstructed by what I later realized was my own shadow.