Poetry: Cursing at Jaywalkers

Three girls, sitting on a bench

Cursing at jaywalkers


Don’t they see

The danger

That could come roaring

Out of the small-town darkness?


Why do they risk it?

Don’t they know that

Bad things happen?

Even here.

Even to the best of us.

Even to the strongest of us, the bravest of us.


They are asking for the pain

The three girls already feel

And the insult is too much

To watch silently

Poetry: In Which I Don’t Care What You Would Have Done

Why do we think

We can quantify pain

Or suffering?


Who do we think we are

To decide how anyone else—

Other than ourselves—

Should react to the horrors we experience?

Before, during, or after—

(All three, places your opinion is irrelevant.)


How dare we reduce trauma

To a checklist of symptoms?

As if what You Would Have Done

Means anything to someone else.


Why do victims have to fight

Just to wear the cursed name?


Why then does the label


So easily become

A badge of dishonor:

Stolen from the perpetrator

And forcibly attached

To their victim?


As if they haven’t suffered enough already.

Poetry: A Blood-Soaked Pebble

It was a notification on my phone

Waiting for me

When I randomly glanced down

At the end of fifth period.

And I went to sixth period

Just like that


Not a blip, a stutter, a collective pause

No announcement of their deaths—

The day goes on

A current rushing too quickly

To be affected

By a blood-soaked pebble


Then come the speeches

And the wrung hands

The quiet, removed grief

Of a populace

Too accustomed to these

Moments of Silence


Quiet voices

Crash into each other—


Sizzling with anger—

A thunder storm of butting heads—

And that becomes the story

Life or Liberty

(The latter does you no good

If you’re dead)


And you know the worst part?

There is no need

To write a date on this poem.

My sincerest thoughts and sympathies go out to the Roseburg community. There aren’t words for the horrors that they and so many other towns have to endure.

Poetry: Never a Fair Fight

Man versus nature?
It’s not even a contest
This isn’t a chess game
It’s a boxing match
Every time we throw a punch
The earth throws it back
So-called solutions only create
More problems
Trying to simplify our lives
We turned them into minefields.

The extremes only get more extreme.

The only way to win this fight
Is to stop trying
Maybe Mother Nature wins this round
Maybe our manifest destiny
Doesn’t have to extend
So far
As to conquer the world.
Not while we’re trying to live
On the battleground.

Poetry: Three Random Haikus

Haiku #1

sun trapped above

canyon walls reach to the gods

pebbles below, alone

Mosaic Canyon, Death Valley
Mosaic Canyon, Death Valley, CA

Haiku #2

footworn path of grass

first page of a fairy tale

the forest beckons

Descanso Gardens, CA

Haiku #3

deep breath of cold air

nothing but the sky above

a god’s view below

my twin at Auegeberry Point, Death Valley, CA

This was an assignment for English class. While I wish we had been working on actual AP Lang material instead of writing (and decorating) haikus, I did enjoy a change to write during the school day, and I decided to share these with you. The pictures are all my own, and provided loose inspiration for each of the haikus. 

Poetry: Tomorrow Me

Tomorrow Me is incredible

Tomorrow Me has written books

And planned out her future

And been kinder

And braver

Brave enough to say hello

And strong enough to

Finally say, “I’m sorry”

Tomorrow Me wears bright colors

And texts first

And laughs loudly in public

And shrugs off society’s

Judgmental gaze

Tomorrow Me turns good intentions

Into better actions

Tomorrow I will be incredible

Is what I tell myself

Every today

Poetry: You Never Left

We have not talked

Since June

We have not had a conversation

Since May

I have not known you

Since last September

The last time we were best friends

It was this time, last year


And yet

You’re still all over my life

Your contact case still in my bathroom

Holes in my bookshelf

Still holding spots in line

For the books you borrowed

That post-it note

Still stuck to our fridge

Birthday cards on my desk

Still wishing for forever

Photos on my phone

That I can’t seem to delete

And all those stupid, perfect memories

Still in my head


You’re gone

But you never really left.

Poetry: Little Echoes

I know it was not

The places we went together

Or the things we did together

Or the late nights spent talking

Or the random days spent doing nothing

That broke us

And left us strangers


But I’m walking the same road

We walked

Now with someone else

And I tell myself,

“This one is forever.

Even you can’t mess this up.”

But I hear those little echoes

And the fear, it sets back in

Because I said the same thing

About you

And look how wrong I was.

Poetry: Single Player Chess


I’ve never understood

Single-player chess

I don’t understand

How you keep yourself

From taking sides

Isn’t there something

That makes you choose:

Black or white?

And then you try to make them win.

We’re ruled by our

Love of underdogs

By the tiny voices

Pulling strings in our minds


Choosing sides

And watching the rest fall apart

From there



You love the game

Rather than the victory


Your love of the intricacies

Of playing so well

That you can’t beat yourself


It all depends what gives you

Satisfaction, I guess.

Poetry: A Writer’s Manifesto

There you are

My blank page




Me with your nothingness

And I conquer you with


And make-believes

Twisted fairytales

And memories

Of who I used to be

Fantastical lies

Truer words have never been spoken

But they can be written—

That’s the goal