YWP Content Published in Newspapers



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Jul 07
Quella's picture

Count the Times

Take me to the harbor where the sailboats don’t have names
and we’ll let them go and give them August’s breath.
I told you I’ve been lonely and you ask me what that is
you say that you can count the times you’ve wept.


#summerofstories16
Jul 06
poem 1 comment challenge: General

23 (Fragments)


Fragments, that's all I have left.



Little whispers of the way that things used to be.
I heard them, 
even when you were so many miles away.

Jul 06
NinaL128's picture

Perhaps // The Race Card Discarded

Perhaps, as a Chinese-Iranian-American girl
And a member of not one
Not two
But three groups that were at one point oppressed
I should not be saying this.

Perhaps, as a girl who was the only ethnic person
In her elementary school grade
Besides the African-American boy
Who was adopted
I should not be saying this.

Perhaps, as someone who always wanted to go to an Ivy League
And who didn’t feel guilty
About playing the race card
On her applications
I should not be saying this.

But all I know is that
It doesn’t seem like true acceptance
To continue to notice who looks like what
To point out whose skin is what color
Or who comes from what place.

All I know is that
Perhaps instead of taking note
Of how race sets us apart and makes us different
We should be taking strides
To make race, in fact, inconsequential.

All I know is that
Jul 05

Honey Lemonade

The Honey Lemonade Man stands at his booth.
His dark hair is greying 
and he wears it like a crown
atop his leathered face.
He sells his cool drink to hot market-goers,
shaking it with ice before serving,
but he still finds a few dollars
to leave in the busker's open case.
He claps when the music finishes
and asks if they'll play another.
They almost always do.
His booth is at the very end of the market--
or the beginning, depending on how you look at it--
and in the late afternoon the sun creeps into his tent,
casting its searing rays upon his back. 
He has been standing all day,
which would take a toll on anyone's knees,
but he still has one more hour to stand
and sell his Honey Lemonade.

#summerofstories16
Jun 17
poem 0 comments challenge: Suddenly

Last Summer

Things can change so fast,
One minute there, and the next - gone,
As if it had never happened,
And it had all been a long, painful dream. 
It was long time ago when I met you, 
And now I have almost forgotten the taste of your lips,
The way the sun danced over your skin,
The way your body pressed against mine -
So close our heartbeats melted together into one pulse,
Pounding in our fingertips and sneaking out from inbetween kisses. 
All those memories we created together -
Fading away like chalk in the rain. 
Trees we used to climb have blurred into meaningless smudges,
Disoriented colors melting together into something I don't recognize.
So when I try to remember what's real or fake, I can't tell,
And I wonder if the whole summer was real or if it was just a dream.
It's almost gone, that summer I spent with you,
Almost, but not quite; I can still hear your laugh if I listen very hard. 
Jun 16

Summer

Is going to bed with hair
That smells like sky and river and smoke
Which we say we'll wash tomorrow
But maybe we just like 
The way it flows over our backs
Like the water that softened its strands.

Is long prickly legs
Scraped and bruised, but pleasantly so,
And bare feet filled with grass and mud
And possibly a tick
From the long wild grass that tickles our calves just right
While we chase the fireflies,
The only bugs that love to dance 
More than us
And when
We snatch one in our outstretched hands,
Flickers on and off like a dying bulb.

Is the flames of a campfire,
Which take so long to catch
Before they flare up in enthusiasm
But then back down, hesitating,
Thinking, Is this really right?
Are we really yet free?
But they are, they should be.
Yes, one day they will be doused,
And their coals will send up smoke
In a silent cry for mercy
Jun 13
poem 0 comments challenge: Orlando

when terrible things happen

i do not feel affected. i think i am no longer feeling
when people are dying.
i think i have seen so many people die that i no longer consider it
wrong or unusual. 
we just die. that's what we do. 

i am indirectly responsible for many, many deaths and because
i live on land governed by a 'super-power' government, i don't have to
take responsibility for that. but i give the government money in return for the whatever-it-is that they provide
and that whatever-it-is involves killing innocent people. and they are terrified 
when these airplanes which represent me
drop bombs on their heads. 

       i suppose that means that if someone were to murder me,
       i wouldn't really be an innocent victim. 

we die for a lot of reasons and they're all so complex
and i try to name them just and unjust, reasonable and ridiculous, productive and pointless,
Jun 13

Only Eleven

Things can change so fast. July 1, 2007 I had twelve aunts, July 2, I had eleven. It was almost exactly a month before my seventh birthday. The sun shone brightly through the living room window as my sister and I played on the floor, Dad was on the couch. Mom had been at the hospital with Aunt Beth and just pulled in the driveway. When she came in her eyes were red and puffy, one look and I knew. One moment I was happily playing, the next tears were streaming down my face and Mom was explaining what had happened. She had been sick for a long time, I knew it was bad, but I didn't think she would actually die. And I knew what death meant this time, because a year earlier Aunt Karen died of breast cancer. This time it was colon cancer. Both times things changed in an instant. May 21, 2006 I had thirteen Aunts, May 22, I had twelve, then a year later only eleven. Things can change so quickly.

#summerofstories16
Jun 13
poem 2 comments challenge: Suddenly

A Case of Ughs: School

Character by character, my cursor moves
Word count is sadly at twenty two.
I dread the essay that I must write
Or else I'll never see the light (of my iphone)

Number by number, my pencil adds
Calculations, scribbled on a pad
I loathe the problems I must do
Dear x, I don't want to find you

Mixture in beaker, I watch for change
Am I looking at gases exchange?
Colors changing as this soup brews
This scientific chemical stew

Page by page, I slough through my reading
Although these words carry no meaning 
I don't care about  this 'Shakespeare'
Because I don't want to be here

October: I wonder how long this'll last
And when this burden shall come to pass
The homeworks make me so dreary
While pop quizzes make me teary

Yet somehow I miraculously survive
Although I am very sleep deprived
In May: I am surprised to know
Jun 13

Dear Congressman


After feeling so much pent-up frustration and saddness over the Orlando shooting, I felt I had to finally do something. I stand by and watch so many terrible shootings like this one as they unfold, but this was too much. I wrote this letter to Senator Leahy, and I plan to send it to as many congresspeople as I can. I urge everyone to take a stand, to be vocal, to do something. The only way anything will ever change is if we push for it. 
Dear Senator Leahy,

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