(Compiled by Julia Walkowicz)
Unnamed (It literally doesn’t have a name) By Madison McCarthy
The site of an abandoned altar
Sits in a wilting sanctuary
The smell of lavender lingering
From drawn-out rituals and ceremonies.
In their wake,
Leaving a thick layer of dust
Settled atop the marble.
The sanctuary was
Bandaged in thick green foliage,
Vines embracing every crack in every column,
Accompanying each lonely crevice
The sun shone through
Of roses and orchids
To gaze on one figure.
Coated in white robes
Gold speckling his attire.
Hem tinged in red tears.
A small scar situated under the left eye.
To represent those who have been beaten and bruised under society’s hands
While dozens of sigils marked his arms
Peeking out from neatly folded sleeves
For the names of each who were lost fighting to see the light
Casting shadows that extended throughout the hall
Drowning everything in
Of black mist
His body slightly twitched
Back and forth.
The body creaking
At each hoarse inhale;
Prayer was spouted.
Properly ordered and annunciated.
The sanctuary stood silently,
Waiting for him to finish.
Each iris holding its breath
While the daisies’ tears
Sat in puddles on the floor
Petals reaching towards the man in light
Far out of reach.
The man listened to the hum of every prayer.
To every inflexion
To every pause
To each inhale
That would soon spew more words
Filling the lonely sanctuary
Long lost to time
Ode to a Tree by Emily Woods
Most recently did my adoration fall for a tree
Affluent in leaves
Was this lanky tree
A xenagogue, he transported me
Snudge was I as I walked by
Know not the tree
That I was intrigued
Reliving the moment every night
I cannot conceive a belief on anything
Save for the tree
Belittle my mind
With its leafy greens
Infesting my brain
In emotional waves
Sit in silence as I ponder the tree
Knowing not if it loves me
I sit still and wish for it
But will the universe listen to me?
Ackwards I lay
As I think of my love
Now stuck in a rut
and unable to get up
Agelast am I
Uncertain and sad
Cataphasis I try to make the tree love me back
Kill all doubt that he is not for me
Elk do wander
Under his juniper leaves
Maroon is the sky above us
I watch the elk from afar
Letting him see me
But not who I am
You and I, the tree and me
Would that even be a possibility?
Ode to a tree
This letter from me
Ought to know who you are
Do you even know who this is for?
Silently I say your name
Praying you can hear
Untitled By Angel Fisher
In the mirrors gaze I find my reflection twisted and fragmented
A dance of shadows, a kaleidoscope of flaws
Body dysmorphia whispers, its grip relentless.
My eyes they deceive me, for what others see,
I am blind to perceive, each feature magnified, A distorted lens
A dangerous game scrolling through images, fueling the flame,
The idealized bodies, a constant reminder of my own imperfection.
The mirror becomes a battleground, a war within, a war I cannot win,
For the reflection I see is an illusion, a prison of self hate.