let's take turns being the adult

Just when you think one years over you remember that this one problem just starts all over again, you struggle once again, and this all happens over and over again, like a cycle. It’s hard if your only just a young child and having to take turns in the adult. You know that you’re definitely more mature but it’s still so hard. You want to do it, you want to drag the sharp object over your bare skin, you want to take your mind off everything and get your anger out, but you can’t. You remember it’s not allowed to be an option anymore and that when you realise things are getting just as hard.


You’re just wanting someone to understand, to agree and let you do what you want to-do, what you really want to do. You just want to be free for a bit, just a little bit. You aren’t alone, you have friends, a family, you have a home, money, water, food and you’re being educated. “what more could you want?” people question. You just want to be free, escape from the pain, the struggles. You want to be happy, having lows every now and then and millions of ups, not vice versa.


You saw her once, her short, curly, beautiful hair blowing in the faint wind, sadly she’s in the hands of a crazy monster, you see him. Did he see you? Another thing you’ll just never know. You just want to be the one to run around playing the crazy little chasing games that she’d just love to play with her older sister, but you know you can’t and you will never be able to. People are trying to tell you how you were treated, how you lived your life and really, it’s just truly pathetic, you continue to fight back thinking it’s the right thing to do... but then you do it and you just wish you kept your mouth closed because it was the stupidest decision you’ve ever made, because you know once again it’ll all just come back around and bite you in the ass.


You finally feel like things are over, just the old and no more of something new, but apparently that’s never the case. Who do they think they are? Making you feel like complete and utter shit. You should know by now, that happiness isn’t something that lasts too long before it all just comes back around and starts again, and if you’re lucky you get to be happy for a while but then the arrow comes and hits you even faster than it usually would. It just turns out that you can’t be overly happy unless you’re ready to face the insane overload of pain that comes as a side. Although you’re somewhat grateful because it’s the most amount of happiness that you’ve felt in the longest time. 


find sharna here

favorites — movies & little moments


✮romeo + juliet (1996)

✮the soon-to-be Blood Orange album + the classic Channel Orange

✮Mickey Avalon self titled album

✮going dancing at goth clubs/ punk clubs (dress up, paint your face)

✮early 2000s music alllll the time

✮revisiting Gwen Stefani, hard

✮leave your phone in a drawer for as long as you can, let it die, don't charge for a few days, get off fucking social media, it's summer time

✮facetime screenshots

✮ the PCH, listening to songs on full blast

✮waking up and getting outside first thing, for a short walk around the block or ending up turning into a whole day outside

✮focusing a lot on what you love. if you haven't picked up your camera in a while, take 100 pictures a day, if you haven't read a book in a while, read 3 this week. do the most and do it every day, satiate yourself with it

✮going to the 99 cent store, get a few stupid things to do a photoshoot with

✮windows open, don't mind the bug bites in the night

✮essential oils: lavender on your temples, peppermint on your stomach (great for cramps)

✮when the traffic gets really bad

✮symmetrical art (religious art)

✮avocado on rice cakes, add olive oil and salt and pepper

✮peaches, fresh

✮backyard pools, skinny dip

✮los angeles bedrooms- broken blinds that let sun in, orchids, coffee in chipped mugs, warm wood floors with blow up mattresses acting as furniture.

✮stumbling into sunsets and rises, no need to climb to the roof- they practically fall onto your lap here (LA)

✮walks at dusk when the asphalt is still warm from baking all day



Chapter 1: Am I Dreaming... About the Past?

"Am I Dreaming" is a series for Eternal Sleepover written late at night by Emma about things that actually happened and things that didn't, things that were thought and things that were said by others, all blending on a subconscious plane. What is real and what is not is for you to decide. 

The eternal sleepover has been going on for a few months now, actually a year and a half. Ever since Cybelle came to visit me in New York in winter of 2016, was it really that long ago? I was living in a first floor apartment in New York City, the floor where the light never reaches. It was so dark in there it felt like 3 am at noon. It was a weird place to live really, my boyfriend at the time was living with me, sleeping in my bed, we met and he moved in a week later, he told me he liked me while we were sitting by the pond in central park. It’s funny that my only idea of moving to New York was visions of the park, running there or the cotton candy, hotdogs and ice creams and kids and old people and ballerinas and cobblestone and hills and strawberry fields forever.

Upper west side turned out to be rich white and didn’t feel unlike how I had grown up in Vegas.

In some cities you just feel the judgment in the air like you feel fog in San Francisco. 


That’s kinda how that place felt. There was a construction worker outside of my first floor window. They would watch me sleeping, for some reason it never bothered me. Apparently the tennants that jumped ship before me and left the apartment left because they were robbed by a construction worker breaking through that window. My boyfriend said he would wake up to rocks being thrown by them at his window. He slept all the time though, maybe they were just worried about him. Our rooms were also all different colors, we taped those color changing light strips in the corners of our apartment, between the wall and ceiling. the room was orange blue and purple all day, our sun didn’t rise and set, our scenery changed colors. The sink was dirty and one of my roommates was trying to kill the mouse while the other was secretly feeding it. It was dysfunctional. I lost sense of up and down morning and night me and him wrong and right. I felt I had been asleep all december, the two block walk to the coffee shop was unbearably cold, cheeks pinched frozen. I grimaced and tried to make it through. 

January Cybelle came. She took one look at me and i saw the reflection of who i had become in her eyes. Same shirt for days and packs of cigarettes crumpled in corners. 

When she came I saw a future, something beyond the technicolor cavern I had crawled into, there was a way out. My apartment lease was up, everyone scattered like the roaches out on the sidewalks at the sight of streetlamp and footsteps. There wasn’t much holding us together, the railway apartment felt miles long with too many rooms doors and demons trapped between us. And yes we thought a literal demon was living there, so much so we did a group seance while my friend from Los Angeles was sleeping on the couch, we tried not to wake her. We also did a spell and froze her name in coffee water. It worked, I gave her a cigarette on my front steps.

I'm losing track of the time and of my words. They left, Cybelle was there. She was there and she let me have my nights bleed into days and said nothing of it. We had our space and our rules and ordered pizza and drank wine, I threw up on valentines day, I called him and broke up with him and ran into the snowy night for my friends apartment three blocks away, in Brooklyn three blocks are long. I was in striped pajamas and a polka dot fur coat, and I was listening to Solange. I was only listening to Solange that whole month actually. I tend to drown in one artist and let them heal or corrupt me with their voice in my head. Solange healed. I wanted to be someplace without cel service without anyone I knew or could attach myself to, someplace that was NOT winter. We decided on Cuba. 

I remember our street really clearly, the pink fence where blind kittens mewed for milk, the boy with a whistle who beckoned ladies out onto the balconies to lower their baskets for him to put the bread in. Our room was bright green bright orange bright blue. I played guitar with two strings missing and talked taxi drivers from $30 rides to $4 ones. Concrete walls and flat beds and a fan humming through the whole night, a TV that wasn’t black and white, it was blue. There were two beds but we slept in the same one. We kept this going, sleeping over endlessly the whole year, Cuba to Portland, Seattle, London, Paris, South of France and the Countryside, Mexico, Salt Lake City, Vegas.. it just never ended. We found places and people and came back to New York and got a place of our own. The sleepover never stopped, and a year went by of us sleeping in the same bed. 

Make sure to separate colors when you put them in the wash and you don’t have to worry about looking both ways if you are trying to secure that lawsuit. 

The sky is pale icy and the night is ending. We just got plane tickets to Vegas in four days and have no money to our names. Less than none actually. 


Today I did some math and numbers and she tetrised things into a suitcase. I carved a punch in a punchcard with a kitchen knife to get a free coffee. 

Moon in my mouth crunch and break tops of my molars off. 

Nabisco snacks tucked into jansport backpacks TiVo the nascar races excecise on a elliptical and then eat four slices of French toast. Is this that thing called the American dream? 

Saw a jar of peanut butter being sold for $20 and screamed.

what if i can't find the reason for everything?

dont you ever think that the bad things happen to you for a reason? to help you learn, to make you a better person. im sure you do, but i dont think that way. and i need explaining. 

i dont get why “ God “ put this in this world to go through so much. To get sexually abused, to get harassed, to get bullied for some bullshit mistake. We have to suffer and go through this while he's up there just watching us slowly tear apart. Slowly breaking into little pieces not even knowing who we are anymore, trying to pick these little pieces that tore us apart to put back together so we can find who we truly are. I dont get why he puts us here to suffer and see who ends up being a saint? Wont it be enough in heaven

Sometimes i really want to end it, end my life. just stop breathing, just stop dealing with so much shit going on. I try, i really try finding my something thats worth living. But theres really no point for me anymore. Theres nothing. My mom tells me i remind her of my dad, she absolutely hates my dad with a passion. Do you think thats a good thing to hear? Knowing your fucken mom hates you and HAS to be forced to love you. 

i know theres something out there for me, i do. ill find it. or maybe i wont get to that day. maybe i wont be here any longer. but at this point i dont feel anything. ive been sexually abused, and at this point ive become numb. 

i know theres many girls that have gone through this exact situation. feel the same way i am feeling. maybe you’re reading this relating to many things. or maybe you’re not? but i just want you girls to know, were powerful. we can speak up, we dont have to be abused, used in any way. I know i know i might sound crazy. You’re probably thinking “ its not that easy .” TRUST ME. i know its not but it gets better. many say that, some dont mean it. but if you keep putting shit in your head, you’re going to live with the shit thats stuck in you’re head. whether its good or bad. so make it worth living. make it worth every second of your life. were just born to die, obviously. but why be alive and having a head full of suicidal thoughts, sadness, depression. i know its hard to get that out. but slowly start thinking about the good things in your life. your friends. family. your boyfriend. your girlfriend. your dog or cat. anything. memories will last forever. and if you cant think of anything that makes you happy. then you have to find something that’ll not only make you happy, but make you the person you are. strong. beautiful, gorgeous personality. a wholesome person. you’re perfect. fuck everyones thoughts. you’re going to make the best out of your life. 

promise me that. 

       i promise u, i will.... ashley -


find ash here

cul de sac— a short story

As the sun rose early in the quiet sea sprayed morning, the world awoke sluggishly into its usual lethargic routine. In the quiet coastal town of Saltmond businesses began to awake and the shop street was filled with the clattering of shop gratings rising. James Drake sleepily stared from the bus window and watched the low levelled sun turn the sea into a mirror, which reflected the rows of white washed houses that bordered the ocean. Slight ripples spread out like galleons from their home ports, heading out to traverse the ever extending ocean. The swans in the quay were not yet conscious although the bus flew past along the road nearby.

          Saltmond is a quiet town. Battered and peeling from the wet, windy and wild months (eleven out of twelve) of the year. It is the first thing you would think of when you think coastal town. Tired and damp, the smell of the sea perforating every house and building in the town. Jobs are few and far between if you aspire to be anything other than a shopkeeper or a fisherman. This is why James always dreamt of leaving. He had grand ideas of being something more than a lonely boy, from a lonely town along the loneliest and most forgotten coast.

         The the rumble of trucks shook the ground near the half built remnants of some ill-fated office block as the morning migration began. James watched as the men and women walked their way to work.  The few early morning commuters trudged through the damp, widowed streets on the way to their office jobs in the closest city. Along the promenade staggered lines of huddled crows lined the path to the bus stop. They stood and shook and stepped from side to side. A constant dance in the attempt to return the long lost warmth of their beds to their bodies. They hugged their white cardboard cups close to their bodies with the hope of retaining some extra warmth.

         Watching this routine reminded James of how much he had wanted to leave, at eighteen it was all he thought about. The opportunity to go to university, to make something of himself. He had no hope of that here. Saltmond had always been a dead end, life’s cul de sac. Many shops and companies had come here but most never lasted more than a few months. It was the same few families who owned most of the land and who ensured that the town never really progressed into the modern age. The streets were lined with the gravestones of long dead businesses (Boarded up shop fronts and walls plastered in graffiti).

         When the bus finally pulled up to the rain beaten stop he was filled with anger and self-loathing. How had he allowed himself to come back to this place!? He had finally managed to free himself and here he was again. Back in this town’s web. He had ruined everything.

          As he walked down the familiar streets he thought about how this had happened. The fact that he just couldn’t cope in a city, in the real world. Outside of the bubble the people of this town had built themselves. He could not cope at all in University. He rarely left his room and obviously had no luck making friends. In the end it all just became too much for him. He dropped out and ran for home with his tail between his legs.

         After about ten minutes of trudging along the damp streets he finally saw the familiar outline of his house appear through the misty rain that stung his face like thousands of icy daggers. In truth he had almost missed his home, the terror of the world had really made him crave the comforting familiarity. Still, with every step his despair from returning weighed him down more and more. So many memories flooded back as he came face to face with the low wooden door, smattered with peeling blue paint. The lion’s head knocker, which had always looked surprisingly polished considering the rest of the door, was now dull and tarnished.

         He knocked quickly on the door five times and almost instantly his mother burst through the door in a flurry of curls and gasps. She quickly pulled him into an embrace that smelled strongly of shampoo and nail polish. “You have no idea how much I’ve missed you!” she sobbed into his shoulder “I had better fetch your father”. James then quickly explained that he would prefer to surprise his father this evening. After a lengthy conversation filled with excuses for his exit from University his mother finished questioning him. “I think I’m going to visit Mack” James said “any idea where I’ll find him now”. Shock slowly spread from his mother’s eyes to the rest of her face. “Oh God!” she exclaimed “I thought you knew, Mack died three months ago”.

         Shock surged through every fibre of James’ being and froze him to the spot. Mack had been his best friend for as long as he could remember. They had grown up together.  Mack was the kindest person James had ever known although that never stopped him from having a wicked sense of humour. He had always managed to find the fun and good in any situation. He just couldn’t believe it, Mack had made James promise to come back to see him once he had made it big in the city. But now he was gone, it reminded James of this town’s fact, you either leave here or you die here. Tears began to form in the corners of his eyes but he quickly wiped them away. “You should visit Tom” his mother said her voice wet with sympathy “he works in the supermarket on Sea Road now”.

         James walked slowly along the overgrown streets, despair weighing him down like some Night Hag sitting on his back. The town now felt so much lonelier and overcast now. His last few pieces of solace seemed to be leaving him now. Still there was one small bit of comedy in this situation, James never thought that Tom would ever get a job. He was the rebel and layabout of the group. Last to work but first to claim the rewards, and no good at following orders. But now he was working in the supermarket. It seems the town had finally drained his rebel spirit.

         As James crossed over the hill he saw the supermarket, a new addition to the town. He wouldn’t have exactly called it a supermarket. It was not much bigger than your average grocery shop, still it stuck out like a sore thumb in the sea of old cottages and stone walled buildings. Its bright billboards added a small bit of colour to the town. It did give James a glimmer of hope, maybe the modern day will eventually reach this rural region of the country.

         The automatic doors opened with a quick whoosh as James entered the shop. It was mostly empty apart from the odd mom picking up a few essentials (milk and tea). James spotted Tom at the till at the far end of the store. He looked completely miserable. That devilish flame that had always been in his eyes was now long extinguished. He just stood there and stared into nothingness. Dark bags sat under his eyes and his hair was greasy and matted. He was suddenly animated when he spotted James and gestured to him to come over.

         “Hey, wow, James. Haven’t seen you in ages, I thought you were at Uni”. James quickly handed out the excuses he had used for his parents when he told them he was leaving. After hearing this, all of a sudden, Tom looked furious. ”I can’t believe you! Most people here would kill for the opportunity you were given, and you just dropped out because it was too hard!” Tom was fuming and James really did feel terrible. Most people here couldn’t even go to university and he had ruined his chances just because he couldn’t stick it. ”Look I am really sorry Tom you have a right to be angry but could you please just tell me what happened to Mack”. Tom calmed down after he said that and his face turned sad.

          He explained to James how no one knew how much Mack was drinking. After James left he did seem to begin to lose his flair but no one saw this coming. He had seemed to be perfectly normal until about a month before he died. After a while Tom stopped seeing  Mack outside of his house, but when he did he looked exhausted, pale and sick.  Tom knew something was wrong but whenever he tried to visit Mack he refused to let him in. When Tom finally got Mack’s friends and family to help him break in it was too late.

         James left that supermarket feeling much worse than before. All hope of a better life had left the town and he was filled with guilt for Mack’s death, he should have been there. At home he spoke little to his parents, ate quickly and went to bed early claiming to be exhausted from travelling. Although he slept in a familiar bed he slept uneasily. His dreams where haunted by Mack’s face, sickly pale and dying.

         He saw the first rays of light shine in through the tops of his curtains in the crisp early morning. James rose quietly, put his coat on and left out the back door. He walked down along the road to watch the new day rise from behind the sea.

         As the sun rose early in the quiet sea sprayed morning, the world awoke sluggishly into its usual lethargic routine. In the quiet coastal town of Saltmond businesses began to awake and the shop street was filled with the clattering of rising gratings. James Drake sleepily stared across the road and watched the low levelled sun turn the sea into a mirror, which reflected the rows of white washed houses that bordered the ocean. Slight ripples spread out like galleons from their home ports, heading out to traverse the ever extending ocean. The swans in the quay were not yet conscious although the early morning trucks flew past along the road nearby.  In the dark, cold morning James Drake stood on the edge of the road. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath. As the trucks flew along he stepped into the road.

kids speak loudly to hide the fact that there is nothing to say.

Today I sat down in a bus that drove me in the very small French village that is my home, a place in the middle of trees and ponds. I watched the spectacle of nature passing by and reflected on the huge contempt I used to have for this place, in which boredom and laziness appear to me as so ubiquitous. The hours I spent writing about how life was happening everywhere but here are still fresh in my mind. For me, it was impossible to image leading a life so imbued in such routine, in tree streets where nothing ever change and where kids speak loudly to hide the fact that there is nothing to say.


So I was in that bus and I thought about my year, lived in London away from the people I had spent eighteen years with and the streets I am familiar with. A year spent dancing, discovering, writing, enjoying new feelings. The fact that I gained some calm and probably maturity allowed me to understand what I identified and named as the missing piece, this part of ourselves that we are all craving and looking for. It can take the forms of an obsession with poetry, of the need to always be surrounded by people, of the habit of listening to five hours of music per day. For me, it was exemplified by a strong need to go away - I needed, for my sanity, to leave France and villages, to see something else, other people, other places, other faces. I did it.


The feeling of the missing piece never go away, it just turns into something else. Now that I am back, I can feel it even more - this impression that I am constantly lacking something I am not able to name, making me scared of being alone. I am not saying this correlates with sadness or overthinking - I am simply self-aware of it. And if I pay attention, I can see it everywhere. In my friend who sleeps with whoever she meets, and disappears the next morning. In my neighbour, who smokes a pack of cigarettes alone everyday. On Instagram, in this competition to prove that one is living a better life than the others. In Rimbaud’s poetry. In the lines of my favourite song. In my favourite movie. We are all looking for something more.


If my first year in London taught me something, it is that this feeling indeed never goes away. It might simply signify that we are all idealizing what life should be, therefore living in a constant disappointment of reality. It might otherwise be proof of something inherently broken in our society. I don’t know, and do not have the legitimacy or maturity to say such thing anyway.


The trees at this time of the year are particularly green and the sun shines through their leaves. Am I thinking too much? Should I stop questioning my youth? Nature went by and so did my mind.


I think there is only one way for me to feel that void - be it imagined consequence or not: by writing, and living.


find hugo here

mornings in the light, a musing about summertime

I remember camping in the summer, waking early and still enveloped in the soft dyed light that peered through coloured canvases. I wriggled out from the tangle of sleeping bags amongst the murmuring of quietly pulled zips. Half falling out of the tents door, I stepped into the light. Just before it was light really, like I was looking at it through a layer of water.

And there was water, a low hanging mist that dangled playfully around my feet, twisting up the just emerging colours. It danced in between the overgrown grass in the rambling campsite, amongst the nodding heads of wild flowers, the childish dot to dot of vibrant tents and chairs, of flags with trailing bunting. I

t was soft but not like the quieting winter morning, much more open. The cornflower blue was just beginning to spread in the sky over the barely fading pinks and reds, those blushing hues of sunrise. They were making way for the sun as it began to find her place in the sky once more, stretching out her legs again and somewhere far off, or maybe not so far, I remember hearing a camping kettle begin to whistle. Another early riser.

read more of Hannah's words here

what are we doing this year? (quarter life crisis)

If you have reached the age of twenty, or are currently living this special year, a year in which, essentially, shit starts to hit the fan. Your high school friends randomly find success while you sit in bed amongst your depression crumbs. I was just lucky enough to have my life fall apart a week after I celebrated this special birthday. I’m trying to make it through the remaining three months of this year, maybe this will help you, maybe this will help me.


My crisis began on September 4th, 2017 as I awoke to my ex-boyfriend in bed. He was from Los Angeles, had super tan skin, and dreamy blue eyes. I remember him leaning over to kiss me, whispering happy birthday, and then getting out of bed to go brush his teeth. As he swayed over to his bathroom, the realization of turning twenty dawned on me, and I immediately began to deny all aspects of my birthday. This was not something that I felt ready for, but I had this amazing boyfriend, and really great friends...so I got up and celebrated appropriately.


Two weeks after I turned twenty and confessed to him that I was riddled with insecurities, he dumped me over the phone while I sat in my family’s backyard. I sat there for an hour and fought it, telling him that I simply disagreed, and that we were going to stay together. However, it was not until a month passed, filled with manipulation and him denying my experience with sexual assault, that I realized, hey, maybe this could be a fresh start? Maybe I could become this super independent woman who has an internship, no digestive issues, and knows exactly what she’s doing. I entered the month of November ready to take on whatever got in my way.


Well November did not make the cut. Neither did December, or January, or any of the following months leading up to now. I floated through the year battling my way through family struggles, mental illness, and financial issues



Routine has always been something that I treasure deep within my heart. I’m a true virgo to the core, and as much as I deny it, I get off on the idea of everything being in order. When I ended my relationship, I felt as though everything was completely out of my hands. Whatever I was expecting to happen, was not happening the way I had planned it in my mind. This lack of control resulted in a spike of anxiety, where I would literally be looking over my shoulder everywhere I went. I did not feel safe, I wanted to drop out, and there was nothing I did that satisfied my hunger for solidity.


The person I knew myself to be had completely left. I did not know what I was passionate about anymore, the detailed plans I had for the year had fallen through, and I felt isolated. Isolation is a key ingredient in having an existential crisis. A lot of time was spent in my room, on my computer, watching videos of shiba inus. Currently, I’m subscribed to four channels in which viewers are presented with montages of shibas running around completely free from the weight of societal pressure.


I would go on runs and get home and sit in the shower, letting the ice water fall onto my back. Journaling was a thing, too, I wrote every day for two months, and each entry was about how I was nothing and that I felt nothing. I turned to art, as well, something that once gave me solace. Even though I was creating pounds and pounds of art, I hated all of it, it was all uninspired gibberish. I felt myself competing with someone, something, that simply did not exist. This competition I had created in my mind drove me to impulsive decisions and forced me into a corner that I still remain in today. This competition, I’ve realized, is a direct result of the society that young people are growing up in. Everything has a due date, everyone has a small amount of time to accomplish something that their ancestors took centuries to reach.


Do this today, finish this by then, accomplish everything that you’ve been wanting to by the time you are twenty-five. But at the same time, stay on social media, see others reaching the finish line before you’ve even gotten a chance to fucking show up on the field. Interact with your friends, maintain relationships, call your mom, go to class, and write that paper about that thing that in reality, has no effect on anyone anywhere! It’s exhausting, and I know you are tired too. Everyone is running out of energy during a time in their life where having motivation and ambition should come naturally. So if you are twenty, or about to turn twenty…...


Remember who you were when you were ten. A decade has passed, you’ve had time to recklessly experience life, and now you are being told that ten-year-old you is just a distant memory of a person. However, that person is still somewhere. You have to experience life, while knowing that people are going to try and filter you in order to determine whether or not you have what it takes to blend into the background. But goddammit, do not blend.


Do not form a life plan that allows you to feel comfortable. For your own sake, and for everyone elses, be uncomfortable. So uncomfortable, that what results from it will leave a positive impact on the people who interact with you on a daily basis.


Ten-year-old you did not know the difference between being uncomfortable or not. They simply got up in the morning, put on their K-Swiss’, or whatever, and headed into school to learn about long division. The simplicity of those times, allowed for the purity of imagination to blossom. That same pureness, and that same willingness to just live, is the only thing that can relieve you of that existential crisis.


So while this year may seem as though it’s a permanent addition to who you are as a person, it is important to remember that although you’ve experienced hardship, or a complete revamping of who you believe yourself to be, this year is about a choice. That choice being, whether or not to stay hopeful and ambitious for what is to come, or to fall into the depths of adulthood, struggling to fit a societal mold. It’s not always clear how exactly to make the right choice, but within the following years I’m sure we’ll figure out how.


find shannen here

It must be warm in Florida.

"Hello,” Mother said while she closed the door.


“Hey, how was your day?” Father answered from the kitchen.






“I had to fire my assistant. He could hardly staple two pages together.”


“Oh. Tom-- Right? I liked him.”




Mother sat down at the bar stools. Her jacket was hanging on the hooks in the foyer, her keys in the pocket. She’d forget them later when she needed to leave for her yoga class.


Father sighed with annoyance.


“What?” Mother questioned him as she rifled through her bag.




“Oh come on-- I know we don’t have an argument scheduled right now but why not, right?”


“Don’t act like I plan any of this out.”


Father had been cleaning the house before Mother got home. He worked on the bathrooms and the lawn before moving to the kitchen and had planned the order so that he could see her when she arrived home. He regretted that decision.


“You might as well have. It’s so routine now I could practically time it,” Mother shot at him.


Father put down his sponge and sent her a glare.


“What can I say?” he questioned.


“What the hell do you mean?” she’d gone back to her bag. Still searching.


“What can I possibly say to you to earn your forgiveness? How do I need to frame this apology?”


“Jesus Christ.”


“No, I’m serious. What would make you happy?” He raised a finger to point at her.


“Don’t act like you give a shit about my happiness.”


Mother erased any expression off her face and rose. The prize from her search, a phone, was lifted to her ear and she scowled at him as she turned for the door. The ringing stopped.




Mother stopped talking and checked her bag for her keys.


“N-no that’s fine..”


She turned in her spot, patting her pockets. She looked at Father and shrugged for help.


“But you got the email right? About the trip?”


She followed Father’s finger to her jacket. Nodding a thank you, she grabbed the coat and shut the door on her way out.


Father rubbed his brow. He set down his work again and looked down to me.


“Clyde, come on, we should eat.”


I nodded and went to open the fridge. I searched the shelves.


“I think there’s lasagna on the top somewhere,” Father told me while he looked in the pantry, ultimately deciding there was nothing good to be had there.


I grabbed the glass container and place it on the counter. The foil was balled up and throw away, it reflected father’s wrinkled hands.


We served ourselves and watched the microwave together while the sun bathed our kitchen in orange. He pressed the button to open the door and I grabbed our plates. I set the food down on the coffee table while Father switched on the tv and found a movie. We ate lasagna.




The next morning when I woke up I could hear them downstairs. I cringed as Mother’s voice rose to my ears through the floorboards. I dressed myself and froze in the starway, listening.


“That’s just not something people do when they’re married with a disabled child!” I could hear Father saying before I entered. They were on opposite ends of the room, Mother with her hands on her face and Father holding a frying pan with eggs.


My presence was acknowledged with sustained silence expect for Mother’s quiet, “I’m sorry.”


Father scraped scrambled eggs onto a plate for me and I nodded a thank you. I sat at the kitchen bar and ate while studying their expressions. It was almost as if they’d switched faces.


“I’m sorry,” Mother repeated when the silence seemed weak. She smoothed her hair and placed her hands on the counter.


Father set down his pan and turned off the stove, “It’s fine.”


I let my eyes drift from my Father to the clock on the oven. It read nine thirty which meant I was running late. Reluctantly, the remaining food on the my plate was scrapped in the trash. I grabbed by jacket and signed my goodbye to my parents before shutting the door.


My hand left the door knob and their conversation resumed.  As I neared the bus station, I saw a boy and his mother waiting for its arrival.


“There was never a chance we would make the nine fifteen bus, okay? That was never an option,” the boy said matter-of-factly.


He stopped leaning on the side of the bus stop enclosure and straightened his back. His mother took a sip of her coffee, ignoring him. She stared at the street with that hate I assumed was meant for her son.


“I don’t know what you expected of me! You’re know when I wake up, I can’t plan my morning around these situations!”


I didn’t know what they were talking about but from what I’d heard the mother had good reason to not pay him much attention. I settled into my seat on the bench and joined her in watching the road. It was quiet for awhile before we filed up the bus stairs and into our seats. The mother and son sat away from each other partly, I thought, because there were few seats adjacent to one another and partly because they were unprepared to be so close. The whole bus was quiet except for a woman calming a baby. She was too far away to hear.


The bus pulled up to my stop and I waited my turn to stand up. I eventually found my place between a man with an enormous backpack and a woman in a fur coat. Off the bus, I pushed myself to the edges of the sidewalk and studied my surroundings.


I was on the corner with the deli and the italian place. Across the street was a movie theater and neighboring that was a drug store. I searched the crowd, eventually eyeing Jason and motioning for him to come closer.


“Hey, what’s up?” He shouted unnecessarily through the sea of people. His hand were in the air as if more attention needed to be drawn to him.


I rolled my eyes. Grabbing his wrist, I pulled him after me and we turned down an alley that was abandoned enough to have a conversation in.


“My parents were fighting again.”


Jason let out an odd sound of frustration and hit himself on the forehead with his palm, “That’s really shitty, I’m sorry. I don’t want to talk about your parents if it’s going to make you pissed.”


I regretted to tell him that I never really got pissed but I didn’t feel like talking about them.


“Yeah, that’s smart. How have you been?” I narrowed my eyes while asking because Jason’s father had died earlier that year. He’d hardly spoken about it, but I wasn’t willing to press him.


“Fine. My mom says that we might move. Something about not being able to live in the house where he died, which I get, I guess,” Jason answered more honestly than I expected. It was silent for a moment.


“Florida,” he said a second later, “that’s where we’d move. Mom says we have family down there.”


“It must be warm in Florida.” I singed while watching cars roll past mounds of grey-white mush piled by the street curbs. Birds picked at the coldness that blanketed their usual feeding grounds.


“It’s always warmer somewhere,” Jason said, following my gaze. We watched the chickadees until an idea reached his head.


“The pond!” He said.


“The pond?” I questioned.


“The pond,” Jason repeated, “They put in a pond by the new housing development. My mom said she saw a deer there the other day.”


Deer didn’t seem terribly interesting but Jason was excited and I was ready to go somewhere.


“Sounds good.” I forced a half-hearted smile onto my face. We started back up the alley and looked into the sidewalk, deciding left was the way to go.


Jason entertained us with a story about how he and his father had gone fishing a few summers ago and almost fell in the water. He seemed high-spirited, and I pitied him but had learned not to let that show. One time while we were going on a similar excursion, I mentioned how his dad used to bring us souvenirs from his conference trips and that I missed that. He’d become more heated than I expected and I ended up bussing back home before we even left the street corner.


Knocking shoulders as we walked, he pointed out shops and places he liked. I watched him, content to be a listener while busses and bikes passed us by. Reaching the development took longer than I’d expected. Jason had said it wasn’t far before we started, but learning not to trust his word didn’t take me very long. We were going on half an hour when I spied the homes about a mile ahead.


“There,” I signed with a finger aimed at the brown roofs.


Jason halted and held the collar of my shirt for me to do the same. He raised his own hand to the sky and followed a hawk with his finger. Its outline was black against the pale grey sky, its feathers slightly translucent. The bird was silent while circling something on the ground our vantage point didn’t allow us to see.


“Whoa,” Jason awed, “Let’s follow it.”


“Okay.” The smile I bore, this time, was genuine.


We picked up our pace and were soon running. The ground was dry and we kicked up a cloud of dust through the field where the bird was. I held my arms in front of me to block the stalks of prairie grass that threatened my face. Jason did the same, but arrived under the hawk quicker than I.


We were almost directly underneath the bird, so Jason’s face was toward the clouds. He was squinting to focus on his prize. We were in a part of the field that had been flattened by a tractor’s wheels, so what the hawk has been circling was plain to see. When I reached him, my eyes were on the ground.


In the center of the clearing lie a tan body with a red stained coat. Skin turned leather, it was clear it had been left there for multiple days. Maybe weeks. Its back was to us, so I couldn’t see its expression. I didn’t know if I wanted to.


“I think he’s flying away, stupid bird. We chased him for nothing.”


Jason. I tugged my mind back to the present and to his sleeve I did the same. His face turned from frustration to weakness when his eyes reached the body. His shoulders slumped.


“Dead deer,” I signed with remorse. I was tempted, slightly, to use the courage I often found in my friend to take a step closer. Looking to him now, I found no bravery.


“Do you think it’s the one my mom saw?” He didn’t take his eyes off the thing.


He wasn’t looking at me so I couldn’t reply. I’m not sure he wanted an answer, but was doubtful his mother had been acquainted with the deer. My eyes ran up and down its body, tracing the shape of its antlers. Jason’s face was wet but I didn’t understand why.


“Has it been dead long?” He asked, as though certain I had the answer.


“Probably,” I said, “at least it looks that way. Its skin is hard and you can see the blood’s dried.”


Jason nodded and stuck his hands in the pockets of his jeans. He forced me to be an understudy in my role as the quiet one.


“I don’t feel like going to the pond,” He said after a while staring at the deer. He rubbed his eyes and looked up at the hawk.


“Me neither, the ducks probably appreciate their privacy anyway.” The heaviness of the situation was excruciating,  and my joke did little to lighten the mood. I received only a scoff of laughter before Jason, again, held my shoulder.


He aimed my gaze at the bird. His mouth was open as if he was about to say something and I waited for instruction.


“I don’t want the hawk to eat it,” He finally spoke, looking back at me. His eyes had a pink hue unlike them, and as unnerving as it was to see him this way, I agreed.


“I think we should stay with it and make sure the hawk doesn’t get close,” he said, looking to me for approval.


I was tempted to refuse, but was swayed easily thinking about the place I’d have to return to if I argued. We set to work gathering stalks of dead prairie grass as mats to lay on. We switched to our backs and watched the sky as the sun was killed by the horizon. The bird’s black mass loomed over us for about an hour before it gave up its efforts. Our heads turned as the hawk flew away. I thought I heard Jason say something, but wasn’t ready to question him. He took a breath and flipped towards me.


“Clyde, I want to stay with the deer.”


“We’re already doing that.” I was confused.


“No, I mean for the night. My mom won’t mind”


I didn’t believe him but his mother was forgiving. I was willing to follow his lead.


“Okay, I’ll stay.”


Jason smiled weakly back at me. He sat up and hugged his knees, rocking himself slightly almost as if he was scared of something. I regretted to comfort him and instead assumed the same position. I clasped my hands together and looked from him to the moon-- which told us our parents would soon be checking for us in empty beds and vacant driveways. I wondered our parent might call the police and prayed they would think better of it.


It was a while before I realized my friend had fallen asleep. I didn’t feel at all tired despite the late hour and decided I would be our lookout for the night. It was so quiet with the deer, eerie. And with the hawk gone it seemed so isolated in the field like we were the only three things alive-- or, not alive. But even in the moment I knew I was wrong. Soon other things that were alive-- my mother and father-- would prove they truly were by, what? Grounding me? Sending me to my room? None of that seemed important now.


“Hmm,” Jason groaned from his fetal position on our makeshift cot.


I ignored him and stared at the deer. It’s eyes were so glassy and huge, like the big black pupils could swallow you. I shivered. The its belly, I could tell, used to be white but the gash left by some sort of attack had rendered it a deep maroon. I half expected it to leap up, terrified, and sprint away.


I decided to sleep and Jason let out another growl while I positioned myself next to him. I mirrored his position again and pulled the hood of my jacket over my head. I should’ve felt cold but our campsite held some strange heat I didn’t understand. Its warmth sent me to sleep.




I couldn’t feel Jason’s heat when I woke up. I rubbed my face, still practically dreaming, and rolled his side of the cot. When my hand reached for him and found no luck, I opened my eyes and sat upright.


The sunlight stung but through my squinting I could make out my friend’s shape. He was crouched near the animal; his hands in his sweatshirt pocket. I watched as he carefully took his right hand out and hovered it a couple inches above the deer. His eyes were wide.


I coughed loudly. Jason’s hand snapped back to his side. He stood and looked at me while brushing himself off.


“Morning,” he spoke with his fingers, now.


“Morning.” I watched his face turn slightly red and stood. A yawn escaped me as I stretched my arms back to life.


“Are you worried?” He questioned after a moment, obviously scared even to ask the question.


“No, are you?”


He didn’t answer, just ran his hands through his hair. I got the gist.


“You really shouldn’t be scared,” I consoled him, “there’s no amount of wrath that your mom could rain down on you that would be worse than my own.”


He scoffed, looking once more at the deer before coming my way. We began to pack up the camp as best we could. Each of us grabbed armfulls of grass stalks and marched them into the un-flattened parts of the field. We took off out jackets and beat them like carpets. They coughed up plumes of dust that we quickly swatted away. After a few moments, the clearing looked just as it had before; occupied only by the deer.


Neither of us said anything while we approached the body. It was almost as silent as the night before, expect for a few crows gathered on the telephone poles. We both held our tongues, waiting for the other to do something. Jason, being the one with a voice, took the lead.


“We’re sorry you died,” he began bluntly, “but we did all we could-- protecting you from that hawk.”


He paused and looked at me for approval. I nodded.


“It was nice. Being with you, I mean,” He stuttered quietly through tears.


I stood expressionless next to him, unable to provide consolation. My eyes reached the animal and it stared back at me with the same huge brown eyes. I switched my gaze to the ground.


“Bye.” Jason signed his final word; his jaw clenched. He looked at me, then turned around and started walking. I waited a moment with the deer then ran to catch up with him.


It was a silent hour before we got back into town. He waited with me at the curb until the bus stopped and hissed at us. We said short goodbyes before I boarded.


Once inside, I was brought back to reality. For the second time, I found my seat beside a man with a huge backpack. There was no fur-clad woman this time, though, and no crying child. The bus felt unfamiliar without those characters. I clung to the idea of the man with the backpack until I had to leave.


My feet moved slowly across the pavement making the short walk to my house take as long as possible. I met the door and froze. I could hear them inside, yelling, but couldn’t make out any of their words. I forced my hand towards the knob, but the door flung in on itself before I could reach it.


“Clyde!” Mother’s shrieked when she saw me. She was crying but I didn’t move from my spot.


“Oh my god,” Father’s voice sounded from the hallway as he shuffled closer to the door. He put his arm around Mother and they pulled me inside.


I looked out the door at the bus driving away for a second before it was shut in my face. I found myself crying, kneeling on the hardwood. My parents surrounded me. We wept.


Dear Terra, Love Lunar

The lunacy that Lunar sees.
Life forms arguing with oceans between,
Beauty in its form though thought only as a barrier, 
Why must she separate herself in such a manner?
A question to Earth from a curious neighbour,
Why oh why do you do nothing for your favor?
You're such a contradiction in all shape and form,
That even your children struggle to look to dawn.
They stay forever begrudged and always ached by something,
Consumed by greed and terrified of unfamiliar company.
How did you get here? Has this always been?

Do you enjoy the conflict? Satisfaction of a kink? 
Or is there something between the lines of unreason; something unseen?

So many questions answered with only silence,
Either Terra is a mute or she is blinded by violence.
A deafening repetition of an age old record,
Can she not hear her own soul beckon?
Has her skin grown thick and vailed her eyes?
Or is it love? Does she turn and turn her cheek to compromise? 
For your flowers are paved over,

Yet still proud you wear that makeup guise.

Now if love is the cause I can truly understand,
As it has made me locked on a gaze to stand,
For love follows no logic, only sure reason,
To feel that feeling; oh what a bittersweet demon.
So that must be the answer, your love is too strong,
You know your in pain, but for which you prolong,
To spend more time with your cherished,
Or rather you ever perish.
Some things require sacrifice, 
Some things are fatally selfish. 

Yes I know the struggle, 
I am in the same sea boat,
As I too would rather die slow, 
Than leave you alone in this infinity to float.




“Obsessive” is a word I’ve heard so often that it’s become permanently etched into my skin.

An expectation that I’m trying to live up to.

It irritates my insides, but goes down like cough syrup.



To obsess is to preoccupy with the smallest, most insignificant details;

The mundane is monumental - the useless becomes necessary.

For example - do I dare to eat an orange

Or an apple?

Watch a film or go outside?

Sit by the window smoking, or hide under covers? - that way, I cannot be romanticised.


I’ve been making a new mould for myself - a space

that I deserve to occupy.

Planners and schedules pile up on my desk, and I do my best to neglect them with utmost care.

I pretend to care about biodiversity,

And the stock market,

And the Berlin Wall.

And not to care about my appearance - although the amount of times

I’ve thought about losing weight this week scares me.


“Obsessive” in a sense that I can do no wrong.

That I have the power to control everything - from the words I use to the colour of my socks (white, always);

To obsess is to let your impulses consume you,

To stop exercising restraint.

Never minding the constant warnings from friends,

From family,

From the benevolent onlookers,


I hyperfixate on small dots and patterns - see the shreds of fabric obscure my vision

Remind myself of Yayoi Kusama and her own obsessions; live through her pained brushstrokes,

Her screaming prints.


Because if she can create and be ill - ill and suffering,

Ill and cold,

Ill and miserable,


Ill and eternally rich in her illness

- if she can do it, maybe s

o can I.

artists work in solitude, and other things i learned while being disconnected

i was a doll in a pretty dress

pretty depressed

candied eyes and darkened hair

i was pretty in a red polka-dotted dress

a rotten mess

a dress 

by definition was meant for me

would i by accident be a ragged doll?

without polka-dotted dresses and braided tails

would i be lighter than air 

and have mouth of poetry to tell?

would i stop existing 

to befriend the clouds?

would i take off this life 

and bathe in honey-mooned vows?



+ + +


I began my winter break in mid-December.

At my school, it's a 7-week break. Generally, I'm a busy-minded person, so I constantly want to have something that I have to do or want to do. Hence, during this long break, I've been feeling like I have too much spare time. The thought was quite daunting at first.


But like most things, everything happens for a reason. This change of atmosphere and lifestyle has allowed me to grow a lot mentally and physically.


During the last few days of the semester, I began disconnecting from certain things and certain people in my life. Looking back, I don't think it was frankly the most thought-out decision; however, it was perhaps a needed change.


Being away from the city this break, I've had a lot of time to disconnect. For instance, I post far fewer images on Instagram. (I know, I know. It sounds superficial.) I've had more time to observe and draw, to sit in nature and just breathe or watch the sunset. I've learned that life can be quite mundane. And I've been writing a lot more (especially in my journal and on my blog). I also started my much delayed novel project.




I finished the first messy magazine a week ago. Now, I'm reading a curated poetry book of the works of William Butler Yeats. On the back, it says he's perhaps the most respected poet in history to write English. Often, I like modern and contemporary poetry, but Yeats' writing is dreamy, mythical, quirky, and cynical at the same time. There's as much depth as humor and personality in his poems.


In terms of consuming art, I've also managed to cross WATCH 2 FRENCH FILMS off my to-do list (I'd been using the generic excuse that I wasn't in the mood for it).


Right now, being in the suburbs, I'm pushing myself to find joy in little things. I've been riding my bike to get boba, reading at the park, playing board games, and cooking and baking vegan goodness. I don't feel inspired most of the time, but I feel comfort and draw inspiration from being in my comfort zone.


+ + +



excerpts from my journal


jan 6

my poetry coexists with me. at 19, figuring out who i am is more important to me than figuring out life. in lines of poetry, i speak to myself eloquently and give meanings to my thoughts. it’s therapy, it’s love, and it’s part of being here.


jan 3

i feel collected and inspired when i'm alone, i feel connected with what's around when I'm alone, and i believe that artists work in solitude

i've learned to really appreciate the little things and those which aren't hard to get. i've learned to let those things make me happy

seeing wild flowers, a hot bath, or a pretty blue sky makes me happy

seeing an old man dressed in a color-coordinated outfit or taking a long walk or a long bus ride

it is these small things that bring me comfort


+ + +


Nothing in life is thoroughly planned out. If you feel uninspired, suffocated, or overwhelmed, that's YOUR cry for change, for revolution. A change of space, environment, diet, habits, or even people can be necessary.



seekers of love

Society seems to strongly dislike those who are single and not “doing” anything to change it.  The pressure of seeking love and affection from a romantic partner has weighed heavily on me throughout my entire life.


The amount of times I’ve been asked about whether I’m ‘talking’ to anyone, seeing anyone, sleeping with anyone is beyond what I think should be normalized. Why on earth should I be with someone who is not up to my standards, because everyone else is doing it? Why may I ask, is it so abnormal to be alone, single and not looking for a boyfriend or girlfriend?


Only over the last year have I embraced my independence in being single. I used to loathe the fact that I have never had a boyfriend, that I was a late bloomer (which hello.. so many of us are) and bottled up so much fear around my lack of sexual experience. I continually felt a strong push from society that I should at least be putting myself out on the market. It’s expected of me to be trying and testing out potential suitors.


There is no excuse for people not to be dating these days, with the accessibility of dating apps making it stupidly easy to meet attractive people. Maybe not all are **cough** boyfriend material but at least might make a cute date or interesting one nightstand. My love-hate relationship with Tinder stems from the fact I’m consciously aware it's a personal form of self-validation. It makes me think “okay, I am attractive, I can date boys if I want to.” But on the other hand, the more swiping I do, the more lonely and zombielike I feel. Tinder feels so robotic, so mechanized. Swipe right, swipe left, swipe right, SUPER LIKE! Cheesy pick up lines or questionable gifs are always a laugh to read, but my interest tends to peter out after the usual boring small talk. I never feel completely satisfied.


What I’ve realized is I can't be bothered for the chase or the game anymore. There are too many rules that I don’t want to play by, like not appearing too keen, or messaging back too soon or staying away from activities besides ‘Netflix and chill’. The amount of time and emotional investment that goes into dating apps, ‘talking’ to someone, and continually seeking a partner is energy wasted. That time could be spent doing things I love! I’ve had way more fulfillment in exploring my own interests and hobbies, than waiting around for texts from boys who, let’s face it, probably didn’t care about me. If I had to question it then I already knew.


Being single for 21 years has been my greatest blessing, which previously I thought was my greatest curse. It has taught me how to be alone, enjoy and thrive in my own company. It’s allowed myself to discover my own passions and fully immerse myself within them. I can make major life decisions without the influence or need of approval from a partner. I could literally jump on a plane and move to New York tomorrow forever if I wanted. This isn't meant to criticize anyone who’s been in many relationships, as I’m sure you’ve experienced immense personal growth too. But I am saying that being single is one of the greatest times to get in touch with yourself and who you truly are.


A culture of seeking out love and acceptance from other people is a fundamental sign that we lack the ability to give that to ourselves. I’ve heard this a thousand times, and maybe you have too, but it radiates truth. We are all whole and complete on own, and no one can take that away. We think that other people hold the missing puzzle piece to our hearts, but actually it’s tucked away in our own pockets. Once we are able to give ourselves pure, accepting and non-judgmental love, it begins to pour in from other people because they are reflecting our own internal state. Everyone in our life mirrors some part of ourselves, whether on a conscious or subconscious level.


Try to question your own desire in seeking love from another person. Because if you dig a little deeper, you will find it's a call from the soul that you’re in need of loving yourself.

find chiara here 


i can’t stop chewing my cuticles. i have fully convinced myself that they taste like sweet cantaloupe, a taste i miss but haven’t experienced in years.



i keep searching for the point. we live for others, not ourselves. and familiarity is becoming exhausting, yet i know the changes ahead will make me want these years back by 2020.


i continue to waste the days i have been blessed with by worrying about wasting the days i have been blessed with. no wonder juxtaposition is my favorite literary device.


what does it mean to be human? i fear it is too cruel an adjective to describe myself as. soul feels easier to grasp. emotion is the only thing that we can all connect to. the disconnect lays in how my definition of sadness will not be yours. perhaps that leads way to learning more about each other. what does your sadness look like?


love is love is love is love. i don’t think the word love fully captures the feeling of love. how could one syllable express your heart for another being? the way you feel when they squeeze your hand tight? love should not be the word for love.


i was both intimidated and infatuated with your confidence to map out my iris.


you said to me i was not interesting enough for your liking. i then made it my goal to become the most fascinating- even if that meant putting myself at risk. what i didn’t know was that interesting to you meant the person you first met- not the person you molded me into.


to this day, the scent of apple cider vinegar and dog piss will ring your proclamation of new york state not existing in your household. it was never ours. i am not cut out for living in a basement. i must be surrounded by light.


when i moved into our baby blue home, second hand smoke became my favorite candle.


i refused to believe that they always come back. they did.


dad always told me not to pierce my nose, it’d bring more attention to something so big. so i pierced it twice.


find medagllia here