[love’s (the) national pastime]
by Kaixing C., age 16
he's a heartthrob
and throb, throb indeed that
bleeding underused overabruised
heart of yours goes
your love, you've
vehemently told yourself, is not.
you believe in trust, in
knowing someone well before you move /race///
past first base, but
first base, second base, third base (might as well)
be in sight, where's home, home, home
home run? capricious indeed
look at him, though
they say (whisper hidden behind translucent walls that
never, ever hide their greed nor their gossip)
eyes are the windows to the soul
and can you say no
actually, can you say anything at all?
to those precious baby blues?
they scream innocence, a sort of
//lazy summer, cozy winter, snuggles in the dark
type of surreal incandescence, and
you know, you kNOW
that if you continue on this train of thought
even that fabled vocabulary of yours will
screeEEECCCHHH to a halt
guess it did
but that doesn't matter, he's looking this way
//he, heartthrob, you, heart throbs
you're up to base, pitcher smirks and
———his arm winds, winds, winds, releases
the ball flies! right past you
you, who haven't even raised your bat, and
you hadn't noticed, but the catcher's
RIGHT behind you
[he was ready] mitt up and smirks galore
the ball is his
the heartthrob smiles
//perfect lips, hair like fine-spun gold
superimposing disney princes will do you no good)
around the shoulders of
the ball is his.
lol, that ball struck you out, and
the game is played and won.
just not by you.
Verba a Morte
by Abigail R., age 19
I am blind.
I cannot see past
on a question mark
and grasp hold
of a comma
and wonder if
I’ll ever reach
the next page.
wraps its hands
around my neck,
while a consonant
digs its ﬁngers
into my skin.
and my veins
bleed in phrases
and my back
with the weight
of it all.
I am silenced
by two parenthesis
in a single story.
I am drowning
in all the words
I will never say.