Category Archives: Free Written

5-7-5: Memories

Careful, don’t look back.

Memories will swallow you.

Don’t die in the past.

5-7-5: Flowers

When no flowers came

She grew herself a garden

And died with winter

Figment.

Her name was

well

who cares what her name was.

Knowing won’t help. Just because you have something to call her now, doesn’t mean you knew her any better.

She was one of those people that everyone knew

yet somehow

no one knew at all.

One day she just arrived. You got to class and there she was, sitting in the back by the window.

She was always looking out the window, oblivious it seemed, to everyone and everything else in the room. You thought she was sad, everyone thought she was sad. Sitting there quiet the way she was.

Soon, you just forgot about her, and then all of a sudden she would speak, or smile, or laugh, and you’d stop to admire her.

So beautiful.

Her happiness so overt and genuine, you feel a little bit foolish for ever thinking that someone so obviously content could be sad.

The first time you spoke to her, it was like

like

you two had been friends forever already. And by the end of the conversation, there was a bitter sweet taste in your mouth.

Sweet, because, now you’d broken the ice. You could say hello to her from then on, have more of conversations about nothing really, but they would have been just as good, anyway.

You would have even gone as far as calling her your friend.

But there was still the bitterness because even though you had her now, you resented the time you’d spent intimidated by her, wondering about her, watching her but saying nothing

when it was as easy as just saying hello.

A part of you wanted to immediately go tell everyone else that you spoke to her. You did.

But for a while you kept it to yourself because that way

its was almost like you had her to yourself. And you liked that idea.

Then one day, she just didn’t show up. Really, it was no big deal until the second day, and then everyone really started to wonder on the third. On the fourth day, you asked if anyone had spoken to her

but that was stupid of you to ask because no one ever spoke to her. Just you.

But then this one said he spoke to her about a week ago, and that one said she spoke to her just days before. And another one said he even called her

and as you looked around at all the faces, you could see that everyone else felt the way you felt in that moment.

Disappointed, betrayed even. She’d been friends with them all.

You thought you were so special, having her to yourself, and all along, everyone had a piece of her.

But really, none of you had any of her, because now here she was, seemingly missing, and when everyone tried to figure out where she could have been, when you all tried to remember things she may have said, mentioned, told you that could have given any clues to where she was

or who she was

you all realized that you had absolutely nothing.

They announced her death at an assembly one morning. Suicide.

Sometimes, now, when you think back, you wonder if she ever really existed.

Taboo: Student/Teacher Chronicles pt. 1

He watched her, biting down on her bottom lip as she tapped the eraser of her pencil against the desk’s surface. She was focused on the paper in front of her, the test she’d missed when she hadn’t been in class the week before. He hadn’t planned to let her make it up, either. She’d been in school that day; he’d seen her. Leaning against a row of lockers, smiling widely as she gazed into the eyes of the school’s quarterback. The boy was wooing her, clearly, making her blush and giggle, and playfully nudge his broad chest.

For a moment or so, Robby had simply stood there and watched them. Two students. His students. Kids, practically. Yet, the urge to walk over to them and grab her was so strong he had to curl his fingers into a ball and shove them in his pockets. What was that? Jealousy?  No. Impossible. What was there to be jealous of? The boy was just that; a boy. And her? She was just a girl.

He watched her, though. From his desk, he stared across the room at her. At her bottom lip, gently tucked under her teeth. At her eyes, dancing back and forth across her test. At her hair, falling in thick, wild curls over her shoulder and arm as she rested her head in her hand.

Then, suddenly, her eyes met his.

He quickly averted his gaze. To the door, to the window, then finally down to his desk. A moment later, she was standing in front of him. “Done,” she said, setting it down before him. He nodded without looking up at her. “Thanks for letting me make it up.” He nodded again. He wanted to do more, do something, say something at least, but he was at a complete loss. She was making him nervous. This girl.

Despite his silence, however, she remained there, standing at his desk. Finally, he raised his eyes to her. “Yes?”

“Well, I was just going to wait here for you to grade it. If you don’t mind.”

“Actually—”

“I was really nervous to take it,” she continued, her cheeks turning a soft shade of pink. “I’ve missed so much class this semester, I barely knew what to study.”

Robby leaned forward in his seat. “And why’s that?”

For the first time since she approached his desk, she looked away from him. With a dismissive shrug she replied, “Ah, you know…”

“Would it have anything to do with Justin the Quarterback?”

And there it was again; the flush of her cheeks. The corners of her full lips turned up into a small grin. “You’re going to think it’s stupid if I tell you.”

“What’s stupid?”

“The reason I don’t come to class. You’re going to think it’s trivial, high school bullshit. Immature.”

“I’m not so much older than you, you know. I remember what high school was like.”

Her face reddened even more, she rolled her eyes and shook her head as if disapproving her own embarrassing, childish ways. “Well,” she said, fingering the end of a strand of hair resting on her breast. Robby’s eyes fell on her fingers, wrapped around the small curl, her pink fingernails shining even in the dim light of the classroom. “I sort of have— had— a little bit of a crush on you, Mr. Simon.” She let out a nervous chuckle and shook her head. “It’s stupid. Nothing serious. Just a stupid crush. When you came in on the first day, I mentioned it— jokingly, of course— to Justin, and he took it serious. I guess because you’re so much younger than all of the other teachers.” She looked up at him and her eyes widened. “Not saying that that means anything. I mean, I know you wouldn’t try to… You’re my teacher, nonetheless—” She sucked in a sharp breath and bit down on her lip again, her face impossibly red.

Robby watched her, the same nerves he’d been harboring so apparent on her flushed face, and smiled. “I don’t think it’s stupid,” he replied.

She shook her head. “Anyway, whenever Justin wants to cut class, it always happens to be this one. So, sorry about that. I’ll work on it, alright?”

“Please do,” Robby said with a nod.

She smiled. “Well, I guess you don’t have to grade it now. I’ll just get it in class tomorrow?”

“I look forward to seeing you,” he replied, and he’d never meant anything more sincerely in his life.

Two young lovers sitting side by side.

Untouching. Staring straight ahead. Their mouths are closed but their hearts are screaming.