Pause and Rewind
By Ananya B.
Teaching us the wrong ways of life,
none pondered over the right,
suppressing our emotions,
portraying the ever fine side,
we tangled our expressions,
muted our voices,
disturbed our peace.
For the mess you created,
we saw life as a struggle,
for which we weren't taught.
Holding us back through the chains of taboos and labels,
we developed vacuum souls, churning minds and fragile hearts.
Teaching us the wrong definition of happiness,
we fell into a rattrap.
Teaching us the wrong parameters of success, we lost our sight.
We need to fix it before hope loses its value, before hiding mental status becomes normal, before we lose someone else.
By Ananya B.
When hope is dull and worth seems null,
speak up to get some cuddle.
When voice is mute and mind uproot,
give yourself time to reboot.
When mood is low and life seems hollow,
seek help to re-glow.
When times are tough and experiences rough,
gear up to rise above just enough.
When emotions are tight and end seems right,
find a reason to fight.
Because a phase lasts no long,
If we gather hope against wrong,
it's easy to advice and say what seems wise,
but difficult to rise.
You will find a way to cope,
because for someone you are a HOPE...
By Anusaya M.
Today I let my heart decide my route and
Take me on an evening walk
The heartbeat led the way
And neither of us talked
It took me to our old wooden house
That seemed very old now
There were long creepers and shattered panes
With an autumn effect in the barren garden
My mother a lost spring
Who always caught me sneaking ice cream
She has always been with me
Then holding my hand and now in my dreams
The summer breeze swept us to the old library
Where all my fantasies were locked inside
From Cinderella to Snow White
And the poisonous apple that made her die
The next moment we were at the school
That looked beautiful more than it looked 10 years back
Where I left my mother's hand losing myself in the crowd
And presently holding all this in my memories rack
And now we both are sitting at the playground
Gazing up the shining stars
Thinking when we changed this much
From what we were to what we are
Still, She Remains
By Lucia H.
darling, if I could rescue the lost,
the lover, despite your stars that crossed,
the faith you carry till the end,
would your smile revive again?
nobody loved the way you do,
the way you mourn the birds that flew
across the sea, wings set aflame.
I promise they remember her name.
I know you miss her; no one else
was there to ease the pain you felt.
she’s left you in the night alone
yet you still wait by the telephone.
you swear the wind still longs for her,
that things are as they always were,
lamenting to the rising moon.
I promise you’ll see her soon.
the gold that bled into her room,
replaced by cobwebs filled with gloom,
still perseveres to you, it seems —
the gold that fills your dreams.
the ocean weeps and sings her song;
the people say it’s been too long
for you to still feel this much pain,
but I promise you’re not insane.
all eyes on her, did you forget
you’re more than just her marionette?
you’ve based your life on someone else
yet I’ve never seen you love yourself.
this world will not erase your name
just as you’ve fought to do the same
for her. this will come back to you.
I promise they’ll love you, too.
Who Was I -- Sixth Grade
I had one friend who didn’t really understand me
Or know me
She knew who I built out of words
She liked who I built out of words
I hid in skirts and sweaters
Because I hated my body
I hated what other people saw
I thought I was disgusting
Everything about me was disgusting
It’s not like I’d ever heard otherwise
I was never really okay
But I mustered a smile
But a smile isn’t really a smile unless you smile with your eyes
I couldn’t do that
My blue grey eyes were murky waters
Not clear enough to see what’s hiding what’s behind them
Hiding the monsters
Hiding the pain
I liked to hide
But I played a twisted game of hide and seek
I wouldn’t ever let anyone find me
Everyone told me I was too nice
But to be honest I was scared to be mean
Because there was anger inside me
And I wouldn’t let it out
I couldn’t let it out
Because there was fear inside me
And I was scared to become the casualty of bullying and grief
I already lived a life that was an empty hole
A hole that everyone was too sad to try and fill again
Maybe some holes are better unfilled
I didn’t want grief to take me to it’s chambers
I didn’t want to become what I should have been
I didn’t want depression to steal me from myself
Or become unpredictable
Or I didn’t want to believe that I was
But of course no one saw that
But it left me wondering
If I’m supposedly so nice to them
Why are they mean to me
But then I made some friends
But not the ones that disappear the minute you lose a battle
I guess they didn’t realise, I can lose a battle
But still win a war
I guess they didn’t realise
That I’m a fighter
Even if I seem like a flower
I made friends that were weird
As weird as me at least
Friends who fell in love with stuffed elephants
And then smuggled the elephant
But I also made bad friends
With the people who want to take advantage of you
Because I am weak
Because I can’t escape toxic friendships
So I got captured in the riptide
Getting pulled down and down or pushed down and down
Because who cares if you kill others when you are trying to survive
I was scared of yelling
When teachers would yell I froze
My brain went to static
And I became paralysed
There were reasons for this
There are reasons for everything
But I didn’t want to believe them
I refused to believe them
I was scared and anxious
All the time
Of my parents
Even of friends
But I knew I couldn’t stand up for myself
Couldn’t shield myself against their words without making it worse
I guess it has to get worse before it gets better
But if you are never ready for it to get worse
Will it ever get better?
If the Fire Burns My House Down
By Sarah F.
I was a meager seven years old.
Stubby legs, tousled hair
In the car with quickened breath—
“There’s a fire on our street.”
The flames were in my veins
Pounding the rhythm of blinding fear
As the car lurched to a stop
And our eyes engulfed the scene of flames.
Tall, licking flames
Gorgeous and screaming and relentless
Red like the dress I wore to church
Blue like the tears that dried on my cheeks.
“It’s Laurie’s house”
Came shouts here and there
And I watched the house dissolve
The memories and screams of delight
Into ashes that clogged our throats.
I dreamt of that night
The flames burned into my mind
And when we left our house
I knelt into a prayer.
My lips moved fervently
My heart pounding promises
“Please let my house be intact—
Please let the flames have spared our home.”
My house never burned
So the fear beneath my skin
Dissolved into nothingness.
My head was turned each way
As my worries blew away.
If the fire burns my house down…
I just know it won’t.
I am a meager seventeen years old.
The Earth is screaming
In a symphony of wails
For its conductor is dying
Silenced by greenhouse gas.
With the dying earth
Comes a new round of flames
Licking thousands of acres
Screaming through towns
Red like the devil
Blue like the depths of the sea.
For weeks the smoke hovers
Like a bittersweet memory
Blurring our vision
Destroying our lungs.
The fear of fire is returning
The one that pounds in my veins
I wonder when the earth will combust
And swallow my town whole.
I watch the hills
The ones that I used to love
For signs of flames—
For thickening smoke that clogs my throat.
I cannot predict
The path of the wildfires
I am helpless
Against the Earth’s revenge.
I scream for mercy
Into the thickening air
But the conductor is tired
He is confused by the havoc
We have reaped on our planet.
So I sit beneath
The California sun
I touch the brittle plants
I sing into the screams of pain.
My lips melt into a prayer
“Please let my town be intact—
Please let the flames pass us by.”
This is our doing
We have the Earth in our hands
But we squeeze her
Until she cannot breathe.
When will we change?
If the fire burns my house down…
I will curse what we have done.
Beginning of COVID
By Kayla S.
This is the most beautiful spring day
The sun was shining in the clear sky
Outside all the student were out to play
The students needed sunscreen to apply
When the news came they all laughed and cheered
They all celebrated their new freedom
Finally away from school they were cleared
They all were free from their teachers’ wisdom
But their newfound joy came to an end
The news came out to be worse than they thought
They were stuck inside and could not see their friends
The teens tried to sneak out but were caught
Almost everyone stuck inside worldwide
It is now Christmas time and still stuck inside
By Yael R.
there is something
just around the corner
this one something
i don't know what it is
but this something
it’s very mysterious
maybe this something
makes me feel bad
or perhaps this something
is too alien to understand
but when this something
comes around the corner
will i even notice?