7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee

United States

17 year old high school senior with a passion for writing stories and poetry about anything and everything.

Message from Writer

out of the deck of lgbt cards, im the ace

(☞°ヮ°)☞

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633
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aryelee (United States) published:

wasteland kids

FREE WRITING

we were born nuclear --
                glowing bones in supernova souls
                and a volatile fire sparking under skin.
we were born screaming
                in a world dead set on screaming back,
                if only to drown out our voices,
                cacophony of truth and lie and hurt.
we have been fighting since our first breath
                fighting for each breath
                as our lungs are torn to paper-mâché
                under the concrete pressure of gravity.
this world is full...

Seeking Peer Reviews

4 days ago

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee (United States) published:

wolf teeth against the world

FREE WRITING

Names have power. That is why you choose your own name. That is why no one knows your true name. Instead, you mother gave you a scarlet cloak, and called you Red.
                                                                               ---

Your grandmother lives alone in the forest. She has since your grandfather died before you were born. From her, your father learned how to bake everything from simple bread to complex cakes. The house is always filled with warmth and the many scents of the baked...

Seeking Peer Reviews

7 days ago

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee (United States) liked The Stain of Tragedy by WhiltiernaWolfLord (United States)

17 days ago

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee (United States) liked Boy Tells Me by belle (United States)

22 days ago

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee (United States) published:

rose petalled heart

FREE WRITING

When you are born, the world celebrates: you are the princess, you are everything. You are the first child your parents hold. They do not yet realize that you will be the last. And so they smile and hold you high into the sky for the kingdom to see. And they call you a blessing.
                                                                                        --

You are cursed when you are fifteen.
The reason: he proposed to you. You turned him down. You have never met this...

Seeking Peer Reviews

22 days ago

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aryelee (United States) published:

more heart than beast

FREE WRITING

It starts like this: you are born in the spring. You are born laughing. It is the most beautiful sound your parent's have ever heard, and so they name you Belle.
                                                                                --
You grow up in a small village. As a young child, this was the entire world, laying in your palm ripe for picking. Fields of flowers and vast forests surround your home, and you see these as adventure, rather than prison. It's a little lonely, but your...

Seeking Peer Reviews

24 days ago

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Power writer

aryelee (United States) earned a badge Power Writer

24 days ago

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee (United States) published:

destination lost

FREE WRITING

if i leave this place forever,
what parts of me will linger on
in the dust trail of my escape?

do i leave a trail of good memories,
bread crumbs behind me so i can always come home?
or is it the sick and sour that stretches my shadow
long on the pavement to cover my tracks?

like the small snail's trail:
slow but steady, a sign of my journey,
a testament to my progress --
each step, a mile...

27 days ago

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee (United States) published:

in my ribcage, the bird

FREE WRITING

come the songbirds of dawn, in all their lovely glory
whistling in the morning with the rising sun
reflected in your sleep-dull eyes.
when you whisper to me:
cold, stealing away of the soft of your voice -
hands sliding across sheets to brush against my skin -
music on your tongue as you sing me awake.

come the bright robins of the afternoon, darting between the branches
that hang over our heads in our little picnic,
legs tangled together...

Seeking Peer Reviews

about 1 month ago

7640c7ade0ad35f42f0bdb7e89fd1633

aryelee (United States) published:

in my ribcage, the bird

FREE WRITING

come the songbirds of dawn, in all their lovely glory
whistling in the morning with the rising sun
reflected in your sleep-dull eyes.
when you whisper to me:
cold, stealing away of the soft of your voice -
hands sliding across sheets to brush against my skin -
music on your tongue as you sing me awake.

come the bright robins of the afternoon, darting between the branches
that hang over our heads in our little picnic,
legs tangled together...

about 1 month ago

Published Work

wasteland kids

we were born nuclear --
                glowing bones in supernova souls
                and a volatile fire sparking under skin.
we were born screaming
                in a world dead set on screaming back,
                if only to drown out our voices,
                cacophony of truth and lie and hurt.
we have been fighting since our first breath
                fighting for each breath
                as our lungs are torn to paper-mâché
                under the concrete pressure of gravity.
this world is full of wolf teeth and dragon claws
                all hungry things snapping at our heels;
                run all we want, they'll still be stronger
                but our knuckles are bruised with
                stubborn pride, radioactive love.
i was born alone full of rage --
                anything to survive another day in
                this caged world of ours;
this world is pain and blood and spitfire
                but i will live regardless --
                in bandages and bruises and unbreakable hope

i...

wolf teeth against the world

Names have power. That is why you choose your own name. That is why no one knows your true name. Instead, you mother gave you a scarlet cloak, and called you Red.
                                                                               ---

Your grandmother lives alone in the forest. She has since your grandfather died before you were born. From her, your father learned how to bake everything from simple bread to complex cakes. The house is always filled with warmth and the many scents of the baked goods your family is known for.
                                                                               ---

Before you learned how to count, you learned how to knead dough and mix batter. Baking is in your blood; you inherited your father's hands and your mother's sweet tooth and spent days upon days creating small treats filled with fruits. Your fondest memories come from baking: laughter from your mother as she threw flour at your father, your father trying your first raspberry strudel then eating half the batch, your...

rose petalled heart

When you are born, the world celebrates: you are the princess, you are everything. You are the first child your parents hold. They do not yet realize that you will be the last. And so they smile and hold you high into the sky for the kingdom to see. And they call you a blessing.
                                                                                        --

You are cursed when you are fifteen.
The reason: he proposed to you. You turned him down. You have never met this man before in your life.
The result: his face twists up into something ugly. He spits insults at you, at how you tease him with your beauty, at how clear your interest in him was. He refuses to listen to reason and so you slam the door in his face, heart shaking in your ribs, and feel that you narrowly avoided death.
He stalks away from the castle, removed by guards and your loving caretakers.
                                                                                        --

Lightning hits the...

more heart than beast

It starts like this: you are born in the spring. You are born laughing. It is the most beautiful sound your parent's have ever heard, and so they name you Belle.
                                                                                --
You grow up in a small village. As a young child, this was the entire world, laying in your palm ripe for picking. Fields of flowers and vast forests surround your home, and you see these as adventure, rather than prison. It's a little lonely, but your parents are bright with joy and the house is full of love. You don't have much, but you're happy.
                                                                                --
When you are seven, your mother dies, sick in bed and delirious with fever. It breaks you. It breaks your father.
                                                                                --
He can't look at you, not when Belle looks so much like Estelle.
                                                                                --
He turns to work, to inventions. You turn to books and fairy tales. As your father tinkers with machines in hopes...

destination lost

if i leave this place forever,
what parts of me will linger on
in the dust trail of my escape?

do i leave a trail of good memories,
bread crumbs behind me so i can always come home?
or is it the sick and sour that stretches my shadow
long on the pavement to cover my tracks?

like the small snail's trail:
slow but steady, a sign of my journey,
a testament to my progress --
each step, a mile into the future,
a mountain away from home.

in my ribcage, the bird

come the songbirds of dawn, in all their lovely glory
whistling in the morning with the rising sun
reflected in your sleep-dull eyes.
when you whisper to me:
cold, stealing away of the soft of your voice -
hands sliding across sheets to brush against my skin -
music on your tongue as you sing me awake.

come the bright robins of the afternoon, darting between the branches
that hang over our heads in our little picnic,
legs tangled together under soft dresses and warm hands.
they twirl and spin and dance above us;
so you pull me up with laughter in your eyes,
bare feet on grass, hand in hand with one another.
you dance, drawing me close -
two girls with wings, an angel and a small sparrow.

come the owls of night, trilling their lullaby
under the gentle light of the moon, the stars, the universe
setting the world to sleep as the wings of the owls ...

in my ribcage, the bird

come the songbirds of dawn, in all their lovely glory
whistling in the morning with the rising sun
reflected in your sleep-dull eyes.
when you whisper to me:
cold, stealing away of the soft of your voice -
hands sliding across sheets to brush against my skin -
music on your tongue as you sing me awake.

come the bright robins of the afternoon, darting between the branches
that hang over our heads in our little picnic,
legs tangled together under soft dresses and warm hands.
they twirl and spin and dance above us;
so you pull me up with laughter in your eyes,
bare feet on grass, hand in hand with one another.
you dance, drawing me close -
two girls with wings, an angel and a small sparrow.

come the owls of night, trilling their lullaby
under the gentle light of the moon, the stars, the universe
setting the world to sleep as the wings of the owls ...

what it takes

we keep moving forward, because there is nothing else we can do.
what of the pain?
the suffering?
it's human nature; we bleed because it is what we do best.
to survive another day,
we do anything
we do everything
despite the horrors that haunt us.
tell me,
how do you survive the monster?

you become it.
 

flowers grow from the soul

though there is much in life i long for
        i am not incomplete
        i am whole and beautiful
        and i have so much love to give.

there is so much light when i open my eyes in the morning;
        what once blinded me
        now helps me glow
        more radiantly than the summer sun.

so many have left me over the years for better things
        they are on their own journey to grow
        just as i am,
        and though it hurt,
        losing them helped me find myself.

i am still building myself into the person i want to be--
        kind and honest and soft,
        four leaf clovers and gentle hands,
        a joy in seeing blue skies and rain,
        planting flowers to know my hands can create beauty.

i have so many years ahead of me;
        my growth will reach the stars
        until i can light...

flowers grow from the soul

though there is much in life i long for
        i am not incomplete
        i am whole and beautiful
        and i have so much love to give.

there is so much light when i open my eyes in the morning;
        what once blinded me
        now helps me glow
        more radiantly than the summer sun.

so many have left me over the years for better things
        they are on they're own journey to grow
        just as i am,
        and though it hurt,
        losing them helped me find myself.

i am still building myself into the person i want to be--
        kind and honest and soft,
        four leaf clovers and gentle hands,
        a joy in seeing blue skies and rain,
        planting flowers to know my hands can create beauty.

i have so many years ahead of me;
        my growth will reach the stars
        until i can light...

Monster Flash Fiction Competition 2018

enthymema

they've got claws and beady black eyes
watching and waiting as you pass them.
they've got too-wide mouths and teeth made to tear
into your body
                        your mind
                                            your soul
rip into the rotting parts of you --
it's never clear whether this is a mercy or a punishment.
maybe you trust them at first, maybe you don't;
they gave you light then snuffed it out with thin clawed fingers
stretching from skeletal wrists covered in dark veins.
they raise you into the perfect prey; it's what they're good at:
making you weak
                            docile    
                                            p o w e r l e s s
against them as they hold you down to pour cement
down your throat
until you begin to sound like them.
look around; they surround you. they always have.
they have been here long before you were born and will exist long after you die.
look around and think:
what happened to us?
                          what turned...

dandelion

make a wish, you think.
the dandelion sways gently against the wind,
back and forth like it's caught in a current.
you can't bring yourself to pick it, snap the stem and rip it dead;
distant memories of someone's bright smile and soft voice:
if we kill it, it won't make our wish come true, right?
the grass tickles your nose from where you choose to lie
flat on your stomach, resting your head in your arms
wondering what was worth wishing for.
the white fluff looks a little like snow despite the sweltering summer heat.
make a wish, you think, make a wish, make a wish, make a--
you don't know why you're crying.
make a wish.
come back to me, you whisper. 
the dandelion drops its bare head as the pieces of your wish are scatted by your breath.
make a wish. 
 

Setting as Mood

cycle of the year

I. Winter
these days, i am the grey of the clouds that hang heavy in the sky.
something heavy lies on my chest and forces me down
the world is quiet; snow muffled voices no longer reach through the blankets over my head.
i wrap blue-tinged hands around warm mugs and think
'the sun will rise'
but the sun isn't kind; the burn of the cold will follow me
until i lie buried under soft snow.

II. Spring
my earliest memory is of cherry blossoms raining down around me
and white clouds in a blue sky when the birds learned to fly.
where i stood, grounded to the earth, the plants crawl up my veins;
i grow, i am growing, i will bloom.
a snail slowly traces a path through the clovers, and with it
steals away all the things i wished to say.
flowers blossom in my lungs; budding tree branches take my voice -
you never noticed.

III....

Numerous Narrators

town fair memory

I. Jamie

We went out for dinner first, at that old pizza parlor two streets away from my house. It was comfortable, though the lights were a little too dim and the music a little too loud, but so many people were there, getting food before the fair just like us. I started thinking then, about how similar we all were, and wondered why I felt so lonely and different if we were all the same. But you smiled at me and grabbed that huge slice of greasy pizza and took the largest bite you could. The cheese pulled, stretched, and your laughter was muffled behind a mouthful of food as you pulled the slice away from your face. The cheese followed, stretching even more, and I couldn't stop the grin that pulled my lips wide. 

I took a bite of my own slice, and yeah. It wasn't the best food in the world, but I always look back on...

Numerous Narrators

town fair memory

I. Jamie

We went out for dinner first, at that old pizza parlor two streets away from my house. It was comfortable, though the lights were a little too dim and the music a little too loud, but so many people were there, getting food before the fair just like us. I started thinking then, about how similar we all were, and wondered why I felt so lonely and different if we were all the same. But you smiled at me and grabbed that huge slice of greasy pizza and took the largest bite you could. The cheese pulled, stretched, and your laughter was muffled behind a mouthful of food as you pulled the slice away from your face. The cheese followed, stretching even more, and I couldn't stop the grin that pulled my lips wide.

I took a bite of my own slice, and yeah. It wasn't the best food in the world, but I always look back on...

love evolution

I. we were princesses
and knights and dragons;
we held the world in our palms,
and when we got tired of it, we made another.
the big bang starts with us:
bright eyes meeting - supernova
hands clapsing - creation of life
cheek-aching laughter - light.
we were so young when we had everything;
but we got older together
and the universe narrowed down
to me
and you.

II. (or maybe nothing changed at all;
the two of us together, always.
together for a decade - that's the same as forever,
right?)

III. our stories changed as we grew,
from adventure as young children
to romance as young adults;
we still chase fireflies together
but now we whisper secrets to them instead of wishes.
you always ask what I tell the fireflies:
how we share clothes, I think,
and can't stop staring at
how my dresses flow over
the curve of your body,
how you braid my hair when...

love evolution

I. we were princesses
and knights and dragons;
we held the world in our palms,
and when we got tired of it, we made another.
the big bang starts with us:
bright eyes meeting - supernova
hands clapsing - creation of life
cheek-aching laughter - light.
we were so young when we had everything;
but we got older together
and the universe narrowed down
to me
and you.

II. (or maybe nothing changed at al;
the two of us together, always.
together for a decade - that's the same as forever,
right?)

III. our stories changed as we grew,
from adventure as young children
to romance as young adults;
we still chase fireflies together
but now we whisper secrets to them instead of wishes.
you always ask what I tell the fireflies:
how we share clothes, I think,
and can't stop staring at
how my dresses flow over
the curve of your body,
how you braid my hair when...

this love of mine

it starts slowly, this love of mine
it starts when i'm young and my mother reads story
after story after story
until i'm dreaming fairytales and ladybugs and stars

it starts when i pick up a book on my own for the first time
flip through the pages, tracing a finger of the pictures
slowly reading the words
it grows and it grows and i grow
until i'm reading chapter books with ease before third grade

it starts when i read a story and think
"what would i have done?"
it starts with an idea that wraps itself around me
like silk, like cotton
and i put words onto paper for the first time and think
"oh"
"oh, this is fun"

it starts slowly, this love of mine
giving name to my passion after years of reaching out to stories
devouring every book that met my hand
until i'm burying ideas under words until they blossom into stories
it starts...

this love of mine

it starts slowly, this love of mine.
it starts when i'm young and my mother reads story
after story after story
until i'm dreaming fairytales and ladybugs and stars

it starts when i pick up a book on my own for the first time
flip through the pages, tracing a finger of the pictures
slowly reading the words
it grows and it grows and i grow
until i'm reading chapter books with ease before third grade

it starts when i read a story and think
"what would i have done?"
it starts with an idea that wraps itself around me
like silk, like cotton
and i put words onto paper for the first time and think
"oh"
"oh, this is fun"

it starts slowly, this love of mine
giving name to my passion after years of reaching out to stories
devouring every book that met my hand
until i'm burying ideas under words until they blossom into stories
it starts...

stone/devoured

there is a place long forgotten just outside town
it's hidden in the woods, sheltered by the trees that grew around it.
that's where you find me, after long years of isolation.
you brought tears that i wished i could wash away, but my hands fade
when they meet your cheeks and you move away to my final resting place.

you don't know my name; it's alright, i've forgotten too.
the vines have crawled over the stone and eaten the letters off my headstone.
you still brushed a hand over it - almost reverently.
no words disturb the air between us;
this is a place of silence.
this is a place for the forgotten dead.

most of the graves are covered completely in vegetation;
my family is devoured by plant life.
i can't remember where they were buried, not anymore.
you look so sad when you trace your fingers over the statue guarding my grave;
the ivy creeps along its...

those dying embers

our hearts were two matchsticks joined at the tip
silent potential left in a waiting game
to see who would set the spark that sent us up in flames.

its goes like this:
your fingers brushing over the back of my hand
sharing dresses and sneaking glances as we changed
staring just a little too long in the space between words
two hearts beating louder than roaring wildfires

you set a fire inside my soul
with the sharp edges of your jaw
more storm than girl with lightning in your words
how could i have resisted?
i was a girl waiting to be burned and you were my favorite lighter

we loved fast and hard and without care
leaving bruises behind kisses
and red lipstick stains on soft skin

our love burned bright and fast
so fast  too fast
and we forgot that fires burn out;
all we have left are dying embers making ash from our hearts
wonder when...

those dying embers

our hearts were two matchsticks joined at the tip
silent potential left in a waiting game
to see who would set the spark that sent us up in flames.

its goes like this:
your fingers brushing over the back of my hand
sharing dresses and sneaking glances as we changed
staring just a little too long in the space between words
two hearts beating louder than roaring wildfires

you set a fire inside my soul
with the sharp edges of your jaw
more storm than girl with lightning in your words
how could i have resisted?
i was a girl waiting to be burned and you were my favorite lighter

we loved fast and hard and without care
leaving bruises behind kisses
and red lipstick stains on soft skin

our love burned bright and fast
so fast  too fast
and we forgot that fires burn out;
all we have left are dying embers making ash from out hearts
wonder when...

color it bright

    There's a hill overlooking the high school; it's always been one of his favorite places to get away to after a long day. it was his sanctuary against the stress of the outside world, and the only place he liked being completely alone at. Something about the quiet was soothing, with just the wind whistling past his ears and birds searching for food in the grass near him. The hill was a place he guarded jealously, letting himself be selfish just once in his life to keep such a lovely place to himself.
    But his time at high school was drawing to an end - just two more months - and David had asked where he often disappears to. So Klahan takes David's hand in his and lead him up the hill once they got out of their after school clubs. They walk in silence, David trusting him enough to not ask any questions despite how curious he...

Omniscient Lens

days in the sun

    On a little white windowsill were four potted plants, soaking in the sunlight that filtered in through the window. The biggest of the four, an aeonium named Lola, was set off to the left, almost pressed against the window in an effort to leave enough room for the other plants. These plants - a sweetheart hoya named Kappa, an echeveria named Nyx, and a panda plant named Mozart - took up the rest of the windowsill, evenly spaced out to give them room to grow. The caretaker of these plants, a quiet girl living on her own for the first time, had bought them as companions in this new era of her life.
    Though only plants, they had provided a sense of stability as she adjusted to new changes while making sure to give them the water they needed. These plants were also good listeners, as she had found after one night ranting about her classmate.
    She...

astrarche (queen of stars)

when the night comes,
the world looks to you
as you scatter stars and constellations
across a sky of fading light.

you rest above them
shining brighter than any other star;
it's no wonder i can never look away
from the soft glow of your beauty
against the empty void of darkness.

you gave me shooting stars
on nights i drowned under the black hole
hiding between my ribs
pulling at my fragile heart.
all i wished for was you.
all i ever needed was your light.

every shooting star turned into
you brushing my hair back from my face,
trailing stardust along my cheek
as i kissed your honey sweet lips.
the black hole changed to a supernova
with your touch on my skin;
colors and fragments and magic burst
and filled me with stars.

when the dawn comes,
you leave me to take the stars away
cupping them lovingly in your palms
as you follow the dying light...

astrarche (queen of stars)

when the night comes,
the world looks to you
as you scatter stars and constellations
across a sky of fading light.

you rest above them
shining brighter than any other star;
it's no wonder i can never look away
from the soft glow of your beauty
against the empty void of darkness.

you gave me shooting stars
on nights i drowned under the black hole
hiding between my ribs
pulling at my fragile heart.
all i wished for was you.
all i ever needed was your light.

every shooting star turned into
you brushed my hair back from my face,
trailing stardust along my cheek
as i kissed your honey sweet lips.
the black hole changed to a supernova
with your touch on my skin;
colors and fragments and magic burst
and filled me with stars.

when the dawn comes,
you leave me to take the stars away
cupping them lovingly in your palms
as you follow the dying light...

this love comes from the flowers

you fell in love with the moon
glowing softly in the dark of night
lighting your path home and giving you spotlights to dance in.
so you dance for her, dance the love in your heart
and fall asleep to her gentle light keeping you safe.

you fell in love with the wind
twirling through leaves high in the tree-tops.
she caresses your face with every soft breeze,
makes your dress flutter around your legs;
you sing to her, give her your voice to carry with her wherever she goes.

you fell in love with the storm
dark but comforting, playing music in raindrops against your bedroom window.
her touch is cool and fleeting,
wiping away your tears with drops of water,
washing you free of your pain as she reaches from the dark clouds above to hold you.

you fell in love with the sunlight
the lazy warmth blanketing you in early mornings;
she lies with you, curled around...

from icarus

Question: what will it take for me to

                 f l y ?

Question: what happens if I

               f a l l ?

Question: will you

              c a t c h  me?

Question: or will you let me

              b u r n ?

Question: is it better to

             c a t c h   f i r e ?

Question: or will

             d r o w n i n g give me

                           more p e a c e ?

Answer:

             I was never meant to fly.

Answer:

            so I’ll fall even farther.

sharing silhouettes

I used to think that shadows were secret doubles of ourselves, protecting us from the monsters that would creep out of the shadows. They carried our silhouettes and lead the monsters away so we could keep playing. Sometimes I’d try to run away from my shadow, see what those monsters looked like.

It never left me, no matter how far I ran.

But now, in the dark of my room, with blinds shut and clothes scattered on the floor, I can’t find my shadow.

All I can see is my reflection in the mirror on the back of my bedroom door.

All I can see is a monster.
 

what we leave behind us

the summer you left,
we made promises on the beach
written in sand and soul.

promise: you'll come back.
some place beyond the horizon,
a new land beckoned
and you were powerless to it's call.

promise: we will meet again.
so many memories are hard to erase;
they tied us together and
we believed it would be enough.

promise: we will be alive in twenty years.
i couldn't meet your eyes
and you held my hands
to make sure i didn't cross my fingers.
i crossed lines the sand
but the waves washed them away.

promise: i love you.
i wish i believed it.
i wish i didn't.
the imprints you left in the sand
fade as quickly as your silhouette
walking away from the golden sunsets
we always watched together.

on that little beach,
hidden from the world,
we found each other in warm sand
and emerald water
catching hermit crabs then kisses.

we walked each other's footprints
and...

hestia weeps with you

You have grown much, my child.
What weight have you carried on your shoulders?

    I carried myself;
    No family or friends grace my life.
    And what a long life it has been.


Where have you gone, sweet girl,
That leaves your heels to cracked and bloodied?

    Across horizons until no one knew my name,
    Across horizons until no one knew your name.
    That's when I knew I had to come back.


And your fire, little firefly,
Do you hold the fire I graced you with?

    Since the day of my birth,
    I've let it burn the inside of my ribs.
    It burned too brightly,
    And now I live this life with only your company.


Has your life been worth living, love?
Did you make yourself remembered?

    I made nothing of myself;
    I have shamed the faith you placed in me.


Why do you cry so, dear one?

   ...

you loved a girl made of sunlight

i.
you fall in love on a sunday morning
when you wake up tangled in sheets
with her eyes peeking up over her phone,
soft smile on her lips.

it's rare for you to wake up so early
but with the warm sunlight beginning to filter in through the blinds
painting her with gold tiger stripes,
you find that she's better than any dream your mind could create;
she whispers good morning,
but it's hard to hear over the pounding of your heart.

ii.
breakfast is quiet with still sleepy eyes
and shoulders bumping together as you reach for your favorite mug.
sometimes, the two of you work up the energy to cook breakfast,
pancakes and muffins and bowls of fresh fruit,
but it's mostly cereal and and the sound of spoons hitting bowls
while your feet knock into hers beneath the table.

it's been a long time since you felt so peaceful;
she's always brought out the best of...

you loved a girl made of sunlight

i.
you fall in love on a sunday morning
when you wake up tangled in sheets
with her eyes peeking up over her phone,
soft smile on her lips.

it's rare for you to wake up so early
but with the warm sunlight beginning to filter in through the blinds
painting her with gold tiger stripes,
you find that she's better than any dream your mind could create;
she whispers good morning,
but it's hard to hear over the pounding of your heart.

ii.
breakfast is quiet with still sleepy eyes
and shoulders bumping together as you reach for your favorite mug.
sometimes, the two of you work up the energy to cook breakfast,
pancakes and muffins and bowls of fresh fruit,
but it's mostly cereal and and the sound of spoons hitting bowls
while your feet knock into hers beneath the table.

it's been a long time since you felt so peaceful;
she's always brought out the best of...

a guide to loving an artist

I. 
    do not look at her.
    do not make eye contact.
    do not believe in her.
    when she sketches your cheekbones in charcoal,
    look away
    and swallow your heart back into the back of your rib cage.

II.
    there is paint.
    there is always paint;
    in her hair, her clothes, the space between her fingers.
    wash it away but do not linger to touch her skin.
    do not look at the painting.

III.
    when she gasps into your mouth,
    electric and wanting,
    swallow it down.
    keep it safe in the hollows of your bones.
    bite her lips and turn them red
    (the same red she paints your still-open wounds).

IV.
    when a girl finds she loves another girl,
    does that revelation make a sound?
    the answer is:
    your heartbeat racing in your chest,
    your breathing open-mouthed and heavy,
    your tears...

monster/god

I light the match that burns the world to ash. I hold the knife above the planet's back and wonder how deep to stab.

I bring this world to an end.

I devour cities whole; buildings and trees and people slide down my throat and I smile.

The world is destroyed.

When I am done, only two remain: a monster and a god and I am both.
 

[disconnected]

2:46AM: It's been a while. I wish we could meet up again.

6:21AM: I miss you.

7:08PM: Remember when we would go out to catch fireflies every night? There are so many out there right now. But it doesn't feel right doing this without you.

11:56PM: I still have your favorite book. I finished it. It was just as perfect as you said. I promised to give it back. Won't you come get it?

3:16AM: We still had so much to do. Every promise fulfilled before graduation, remember?

3:58AM: I wanted to ask you to prom. Maybe you would have laughed, said prom is silly, but I hope you would have said yes.


[This number is no longer available.]

4:39AM: I wish I knew how little time we had.

 

Talking to “You”

quiet apocalypse

The end of the world has been kind to you.

No disease or war or tragedy plunged the world into ruin; rather, nature took back its space in a single night. Trees strangled generators and destroyed wires, leaving the world without electricity. Plants grow out of the hood of cars and cracks in the road. Food is not reliably available, but it's okay. No one tries to kill you.

No one is with you. There hasn't been another person around you since the world ended.

But you are safe and at peace; an old tent with few holes makes a good place to sleep, and blackberry bushes fill what was once your yard. Just a street away is a pond filled with fish and ducks. You won't go hungry or thirsty. But you are lonely, and sometimes that is the worst emptiness of all.

You make friends with the crows and ravens. They follow you around and find little trinkets...

Talking to “You”

quiet apocalypse

The end of the world has been kind to you.

No disease or war or tragedy plunged the world into ruin; rather, nature took back its space in a single night. Trees strangled generators and destroyed wires, leaving the world without electricity. Plants grow out of the hood of cars and cracks in the road. Food is not reliably available, but it's okay. No one tries to kill you.

No one is with you. There hasn't been another person around you since the world ended.

But you are safe and at peace; an old tent with few holes makes a good place to sleep, and blackberry bushes fill what was once your yard. Just a street away is a pond filled with fish and ducks. You won't go hungry or thirsty. But you are lonely, and sometimes that is the worst emptiness of all.

You make friends with the crows and ravens. They follow you around and find little trinkets...

monster/god

I light that match that burns the world to ash. I hold the knife above the planet's back and wonder how deep to stab.

I bring this world to an end.

I devour cities whole; buildings and trees and people slide down my throat and I smile.

The world is destroyed.

When I am done, only two remain: a monster and a god and I am both.
 

Talking to “You”

quiet apocalypse

The end of the world has been kind to you.

No disease or war or tragedy plunged the world into ruin; rather, nature took back its space in a single night. Trees strangled generators and destroyed wires, leaving the world without electricity. Plants grow out of the hood of cars and cracks in the road. Food is not reliably available, but it's okay. No one tries to kill you.

No one is with you. There hasn't been another person around you since the world ended.

But you are safe and at peace; an old tent with few holes makes a good place to sleep, and blackberry bushes fill what was once your yard. Just a street away is a pond filled with fish and ducks. You won't go hungry or thirsty. But you are lonely, and sometimes that is the worst emptiness of all.

You make friends with the crows and ravens. They follow you around and find little trinkets...

Flash Fiction Competition 2017

the lady of lake superior

They say she never gives up her dead. Keeps them down in shipwrecks and reeds, clings to their bodies possessively.

Every time I go out on my boat, I wonder if I'll become another body for her to claim. The cold spray of water in unforgiving, but that is her nature. She keeps her dead -- she keeps my father.

No beast haunts the waves and pulls ships down; only her in her loneliness hides beneath the surface.

People will ask me what monster lies in the lake.

They don't understand: the lake is the monster.
 

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