"How to Deplete"
By: Trisha Iyer
"How to deplete"
is so easy, you just—
reach deep into the hollow collarbone of the Earth and dig
up Her heart, carbon coal crusting under your fingernails, natural gas wisping
across your veins, oil latching onto and through the soft skin hammocks of your thumbs—
leach the good, the earnest thriving of life into your ice-blood like the damp—
send the evil puffing smokestacks through your teeth up over Oregon, turn it all orange—
stomp the bad into cratering footsteps, floods, fracked-up valleys, catastrophes, grind
the stone back into the peach and turn it all to ash in the mouth.
Be the greatest con man of all—abscond with the soul of the world, but its heartstrings tangle under your arms and pull you back like Scylla and wrench your eyes open to see—
the wilted-winged bees, bowed appendages trying
to scrape homes back together, the withered-raisin boys “starving in Sudan”, their guts trying
to lean out of bodies, Indian not-in-schoolgirls who can't spell "period poverty", dignity trying
to leak out between their legs. You see—climate change doesn’t cause
everything but when we are
old and frail and brittle-boned we will be bitter-tongued too, wishing
that you wrote a better world for us in your will, that you hadn’t learned
how to deplete—dear Dragon, dear Mogul,
Yesterday I saw the Sun Disappear
By: Ada Praun-Petrovic
Author’s Note: Because the theme of this piece regards a topic commonly on the minds of youth today, several quotes in the piece (including the title itself) were written by other individuals. These quotes are marked and their authors are identified at the bottom of the piece.
Smiling and laughing, I teased my best friend. I cautiously watched the mischievous twinkle in her gleefully narrowed eyes, and I heard a triumphant shriek interrupted by a crashing sound and a torrent of cold water.
I shaded my eyes with my hand as I looked at my friend, the sun’s blinding white light pounding against my scrunched eyelids.
I relished the taste of strawberry ice cream and promised myself I’d go slowly, but in ten minutes I was left with an empty cone and a smear of pink on my chin.
I went for early morning runs in the crisp air before the heat hit.
I leaned my head on airplane windows and slowly closed my eyes.
I sunburned till my skin peeled, but I didn’t care.
That was last summer.
Yesterday, I saw the sun disappear.(1) The sky turned red and my grandparents’ house burned down.
You know, I used to dream. I dreamed of going to college and grad school. I had bold hopes of getting a PhD in economics, or computer science, or quantum physics - I never really could make up my mind. On the bright side, now I might not have to.
I wanted to make a difference in the world. I wanted to matter. To make advancements in String Theory research, or to maybe help adjust America’s sucky econ policies. Crazy aspirations, I know, but I think everyone should have a couple of those. They’re what keep us going, because it’s so easy to overlook the simple joys of everyday life - our parents’ smiles, our diabetes-inducing breakfasts, our friends’ absolutely ridiculous inside jokes. I wish I appreciated those more before. I feel like I missed out on 15 years worth of pure joy in an untroubled world.
Now, I don’t dream too much about the future anymore, because I don’t know if there’ll be one.(2) For all the jokes we make and how much life sucks, I really don’t want to die. I want to grow up, and have a career, and have a family, and I want to matter. I don’t want to die while choking on ash and smoke before I even find my place in the world. I want to go on a senior trip to Europe with my best friend, and I want to go to college to study astrophysics and learn about our universe, and I want to fall in love, and I want to live, and I don’t think any of that is going to happen.
20 years from now, most of us will probably still be alive, but the world is going to be so different, I’d almost rather not stick around to find out. And no one’s taking it seriously, it’s so easy to brush everything off. We were robbed of our entire lives.
Then again, I don’t suppose there’s much point in speculating about the future. I read somewhere that such predictions are impossible for anyone to make because of all the unexpected unknowns. For now, I’m just going to enjoy the little things. I can’t dare to hope or dream about all my crazy goals, but I can always enjoy the little things. My parents’ smiles, my diabetes-inducing breakfasts, and my friends’ absolutely ridiculous inside jokes. No one can steal those from us.
A quote shared by Corrin Hailey
A quote shared by Hiya Verma
By: Ava Arasan
There comes a time when one must stare into reality's pale face,
facts as bold and blatant as mid-2000 brick brows,
lips parting only to convey logistics and stats.
The usurper runs among the pack,
the twisted link jingles loudly on the chain,
the traitors mark the target on one’s back,
strategizing and plotting, eager to cause pain,
what foul words can spout
from a backstabber's thin lips?
how many pounds of powder
hiding pure transparency?
how many masks until one finds
the thief of trust,
the deep, twisted roots that bind a person
into the soil,
into the soul.
how odd that a weed in one’s garden
looks like a rose all around.
How does one sweeten the bitter bite?
How does one stand their ground
when the heart wishes flight?
How to seed a garden,
create true roses,
In order to sprout up,
sometimes, first one must make