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we may have
walked through
the fire together,
but that doesn't
mean we didn't
get burned.
"let's examine these words."
yes- let's lay them on a table,
cut them open and diagnose nothing.
autopsying when you know that
there's nothing to find
"follow the yellow brick road"
the witch didn't die
cinderella didn't go to the ball
sleeping beauty didn't wake up
belle escaped the beast
snow white was poisoned and killed
jasmine didn't go with aladin
moana stayed on the island
ariel sayed under water
tiana didn't kiss the prince
rapunzel stayed in the tower
pocahontas didn't save john smith
mulan stayed in the village
anna didn't go after elsa
elsa controlled her powers
anastasia/anya didn't care about her past

a world where evil wins
and there are no princesses
is a scary world.

be careful, princess.
i’ve been told
many times
that my eyes
are the color
of the ocean.
just like my
mom’s eyes.

the color of
the sky after
a rain storm,
young flowers,
a little lighter
than the blue
on a walmart bag,
a worn jean jacket.

i think i like
ocean the best-
i miss it the most.
my closest friends
are made of:
white paper
black ink
12pt Times New Roman font
i'm shattering
so stressed
to the breaking

if something
isn't done soon
there won't be
any of me left
ive burned a
lot of bridges

whether it was
on purpose or
an accident-
i still don’t know
it turns out the fire
we walked through
was just
things are changing so

life is happening so

from one thing to the next,
supporting friends, working
at the cafe and hospital...

and things will continue to
change. as long as we are alive
nothing will ever stay the same
if i get the job
as a dishwasher
at the cafe or
the nursing home

i might get my
tragically beautiful
cinderella story
after all
could be
seasonal depression
or could be
lacking any friends
i don’t know.

and please don’t try to tell me “oh you have friends- you really do” or “find new friends” because trust me- I know them- and I don’t want to associate with them and I live in too small of a town to find other friends.
thank you for not teaching me any real knowledge
but instead teaching me how to memorize correct answers.
thank you for making us teach ourselves and our parents saying
"you spend too much time on the internet"
when in reality some of us were teaching ourselves because
you never did.
you taught me that grades are more important than my
physical and mental health.
some of us are here because we want to learn,
others are only here because it's required by law.
please teach for the ones who want to be here.
dear you,

please remember that your voice has power.
power to raise an ocean of words,
please make them mean something.
power to create a storm,
please don’t destroy too much.
you have been given hands to create,
a mind to wonder,
a life that is worth living if you make it worth living
i've battled demons
i've been to hell and back to get here
and you still think i'm weak?
you'll never know how strong you or i are
until we've been shattered and had to
rebuild ourselves alone.
prince charming wont come to a broken princess.
maybe he will to you, but he didn't to me.
i'm tired of waiting.
for you.
for the world.
for everything to go back to normal.

you asked me to keep it a secret.
and i did.
and you know how hard
it is for me to keep a secret like that.

and i thought,
if i did everything just right.
if i was perfect,
if i was good enough for you,
you'd keep me.
i'm tired of waiting for
you. for your validation.
and i don't care if this hurts,
you need to know.

i'm starting to know my worth.
and i know i don't deserve to wait
for someone who might not wait for me.
i love you, but some days its hard when
you don't love me.
and i try and i try and i try to help you,
but you won't take my help
and i don't know what to do anymore.

i have so many thoughts
and feelings
and emotions
and things to say,
but i can't say them,
because it might hurt you,
or i don't know how you'll react.
and i don't want to hurt you-
not again.

and every time we talk you hurt me.
whether you know it or not.
you aren't who you were and i'm waiting
for the old you to come back,
the you i fell in love with.
and i still love you, but some days it's hard.
you've made me cry more than anyone else.
and i love you more than anyone else.
and maybe that's why i stay.
maybe that why i keep trying to help you.

i hope you're the one i end up with.
otherwise, all of this heartbreak was for nothing.
you say you love me
and yet
ive never felt less loved.
i felt more loved when you
didn’t love me.
don't cry, darling
things will get better
chin up
trust me.

you know what?

let it out.
i know you've been hiding for too long.
i know you've been abandoned.
i see you.
you're beautiful.
you're perfect.
you're amazing.
if you ever wonder if you're a bad person? bad people don't worry about being better.
go ahead and cry.

let your tears water the ground.
let the seeds of despair and hurt grow
let the graves of dreams and lost friends have gardens
un-clench your hands and you'll find seeds falling out
every bad thing is now a seed
the bad things will become beautiful things,
just to spite everyone who said
"no you can't."
"it's not possible."
"you're stupid/ugly"/any other mean word

those will be the most beautiful flowers of all.

so let your tears flow.
they'll water the ground beneath your feet.
it'll be a garden of spite and inspiration.
it's 5:30am.
i'm sitting at the
dining room table
with my physics notes
in front of me. a cup of
tea sits to the right of it all.
mornings like these are more
common than i'd like to admit.
homework and notes sit in front
of me, waiting for the calculations
to be completed. it's odd. i can focus
at 5:30am better than i can focus at, say,
8:30pm. i think i actually like early physics
the glowing of the
hot embers from
what was left of the
bonfire reminded
me that maybe
some good can come
out of this darkness.
i try to feel
the emptiness
and aching
that used to
be in my heart.
sometimes there
are still traces of it
but other times
its really gone
and i cant believe
that im actually
happy again
poem cancelled
i was wrong
the emptiness is back
i'm still half a page short.
this essay is pointless
there is no fluff left to write

the cursor sits there- it
mocks me.
this isn't helping either
we were never told
that we are essential.
we just had to assume
and hope for the best.
we work in a nursing home
on the other side is a hospital.
we don’t work in nursing,
we work in dietary.
my whole life has been changed
because of my job.
one more thing goes wrong-
and i’ll snap.
“too much has happened
for us to lose hope”
says the ones who don’t make
$9 an hour, we aren’t making
anything extra for working
during this- everyone else is.
thank you for “valuing”
every staff member “equally.”
stop lying to my face.
tell me what’s really
going on.
it still seems like
things are falling
and i lowkey know
that they are-
but things are falling
in place too. maybe
life and the world
isn't as against us
as it may seem
In my homeroom class, we don't have a seating chart.
But I still sit as far away from the door as I can.
Subconsciously it's probably because of a school shooting.
I've been anticipating one to strike at my small high school for a couple years now.
It's probably because of a lock down we had a couple years ago when I was still in middle school.
There were armed men on campus.
We had to be silent for hours.
I was in choir at the time.
Over 100 of us were squeezed into a small space.
There were girls crying,
my best friend was holding my hand,
I was having an anxiety attack.
I was only thinking
"Please not today..."

I'm not surprised anymore.
When another school is in the news,
it's deeply upsetting
but not surprising.
It's all I've ever known.
The Columbine High School shooting happened in 2001.
I was born a year later.
I've never actually known peace in this country...
i’m standing on the
edge of the world
so much talent and

but i’m waiting.
waiting for something
to happen that will
never happen.
if i love you
i love you through everything.
the good and bad times,
the easy and hard days,
i won’t leave.

but if you stop loving me,
i’ll still be there.
i won’t leave.
even if I should.

but remember that
you can’t make me stay.
i choose to stay.
when people asked
“what do you want to
be when you grow up?”
i never knew.
i’ve grown up a little, 17,
and all i am is
i just want the happily ever after
every little girl dreams of
because romance has been





since the moment i came out
of the womb, but hey-
that's just part of being
a girl
my education has turned into a
competition i never agreed to enter.
i don't hate learning, but i hate
being taught by teachers who don't
care who really just work here
so they can coach.
everyone says, its preparing
you for the real world.
so the first 13 years of my education
is just a trial run?
i don't know what day of the week
or month it is, i think in test dates
and deadlines.
they say you need a good ACT/SAT
score to get into a good college.
fun fact: only 21% of people work
in the area that they majored in.
they make it seem like everything
is depending on this test.
i don't know how much
longer i can handle this weight
and pressure to perform.
i used to be gifted way back when
but now i'm not because i wan't
continually challenged.
i just need to make it through
this semester, then it'll be over for
a couple months, then the cycle
will start again...
his cologne
haunts me
am i
falling out of love?
just realizing that you
really don’t care anymore?
i've finally found the inspiration
to write again and the time to do it.
we both need time to heal and figure
out life, this is how i heal and
start the next chapter of my life
sometimes when
no one checks
the group chat
for awhile and
there’s no one
else on-
it feels like you’re
just talking in an
empty theatre- waiting.
waiting for anything.
a “read” notification,
a typing bubble-
a sign that you’re
not alone-
a friend once told
me “you are light.”
i’m trying to be light
to all of my friends
and everyone around me.

i think i like being light...
it’s a very good place,
mentally it isn’t draining,
it isn’t emotionally
draining either.

i think i’m happy again
listen here to me.
ignore what everyone else is saying if they're trying to tear you down.
don't let that happen.

you are smart
you are beautiful
you are kind
you are seen
you are loved
you're better than you think you are.
im stuck in
this never ending
loop. this cycle
of go to work,
come home, go
to bed, repeat.
i can’t live the
rest of my life
like this.
life is like a
bad song stuck
on repeat.
in the

i often
get lost in my
own thoughts

but it’s a risk
that i
dare to take
i used to think that
i wasn’t the main
character of my
own story.
i’ve learned
that i am-
it’s just a really
messed up story
as i brush the mascara
on my eyelashes,
i notice the rain outside,
gently hitting my windows.
it’s a beautiful thing
sometimes there are
these perfect little

i believe that these
moments are what
defines who we are
i've spent the last
3 months of my
life on a musical

a week ago today
was opening night
and now it's all
completely over

i don't regret
mismatched furniture
a few dishes in the cupboards
a couple random blankets and lamps
a pan and a mug or two in the sink
a broken clock above the fake fireplace
a fake jackalope head on the fireplace

a couple college kids' apartment
my brother and his roommate
it isn't much but it feels like home
one thing i've learned
is that i will never
be anyone's first choice.

he will always choose
his friends over the girl
he says he's dating.

i've finally come to
terms with the fact that
i'm just not good enough.
it feels like i'm stuck in
a never ending
night terror.

it's on loop and
won't stop
going and
going and
going and
going and
going and

this is my cry for someone-
anyone to help me escape.
i can't handle it anymore...
in april my parents and i
went back to the
east coast, new england,
for a funeral.
my mother grew up there
and i was born there.

i hadn't seen the ocean in
11 years since we left.

i miss the waves
i miss the cool
sea breeze
the seagulls
the marinas
the houses on the water
the random shops
i miss everything
it's more of a home than
this house in the middle of
nowhere ever was.
what i miss
most about the
ocean is the
freedom of
standing on rocks
over the waves
without any worries
my prince
isnt coming
he probably
found a better

im finally
to terms
with that
so many

i think that
i might be the
i bought a prom dress
last night.
it's ivory and rose gold
and it makes me feel
like a confident queen.

i promposed to my boyfriend.
there were scrabble tiles
and it was adorable.
he said yes.

i know it's still two or three
months away, but i'm getting
ready and it'll be a good night.
a night where i finally feel
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