We had a small but talented group in Georgetown this June. These girls explored three act structure, metaphors, and how to create a dynamite opening. They wrote very serious and seriously funny pieces. I'm very proud of the work they produced in our five day workshop.
By Bridgette Barnard
My name smells like the cool free air that rushes violently into the car when the windows are down. It smells like the cool rain in the fall, and the harsh heat in the summer. I inherited my name from no one, and it was chosen on impulse and feeling. My name tastes like a cool, sweet iced tea shared with my friends by a campfire under the Texas stars. My name sounds like the rushing water of waterfalls and is silent like a burning fire. My name is strong like a bison and swift and elusive like a mountain lion. My name looks like a group of kids in a topless, turquoise jeep, listening to loud music and laughing as if there is no tomorrow. My name can be rash like a bear and wise as an owl.
My name is Bridgette.
Out to Sea
By Bridgette Barnard
I need you less than a blind man needs a pair of glasses, less than a dehydrated man needs a cup of salt, less than a soup ladle when cooking a steak. You have been a thorn that has held me back, the fence in the road, the wall on the walkway, the extremely, never-ending train that crosses the road as I wait impatiently in my car. You’re a white-washed tomb, pretty on the outside and decaying on the inside, and if I was to compare your personality, it would be more interesting and comforting to talk to a snail. You’re face reminds me that of an old, stale man, and your hair is as greasy and disgusting as the mold-ridden bathrooms of McDonald’s. You’re a white-washed tomb, pretty on the outside and decaying on the inside, and if I was to compare your personality, it would be more interesting and comforting to talk to a snail. Your eyes are sunken in as if you’ve been dead for years, but the only thing that’s been dead is your personality. I’m not telling you that you have to get on that ship, but I hear the air’s fresher if you go out to sea.
Your love is like a snake I am about to kill, like a wilted flower crushed under my foot, like the breaking of a plate with pieces all over, and like the smell of a stagnant pond that has not moved in years.
Your presence is as if my leg is being amputated, like I am being forced to eat worms, and like trying to memorize the dictionary.
Anything you do is like a fish, scaly and disgusting, like climbing a vertical surface in the rain, and like dead batteries with no capabilities at all.
I hate you like I hate snakes in the car on road trips, like running shoes covered in mud, like visiting the dentist and not knowing what they will do, and like getting jabbed by needles.
Poem Based on Random Words
by Rebekah Schwab
Poetry is running in circles in February and wearing spectacles on Fridays. It is the cushion for the past and the avocado of my heart. It is yummy like the blue sky and fruity as a purring kitten. The inconceivable gratitude of the ostrich is nothing compared to my imagination of poetry.
My mistake was huge, bigger than the largest left side tackle in the United States, bigger than the face of the giant that is home to the London Eye. But not as big as us saying goodbye.
I need you to stay like California needs torrential rains, like a lost man needs a map, like the cells of my body need oxygen, more than you think you need to leave.
If you leave my body will collapse and break into a dust of a million broken pieces, a galaxy of misery. My heart will ache and quake with each beat until I give up and demand it to rest. Tears will flow through my veins, keeping me alive like the blood that used to sustain me.
Because I love you more than Picasso loved perspectives, than Dalí admired dreams, than Mozart loved harmonies and melodies, than an introvert loves quiet trips to the library, more than you hate me.
by Kath Stephenson
It’s been 11 years. Each day a new adventure. Transported to jungles where he feasts with large beasts, medieval fortresses where he lusts after princesses, mythical lands full of whimsical tea parties with forest nymphs; a sense of self, purpose, his drive to live, manifested in these adventures. Today, he conquers the deep sea. Plunging into the abyss of blue air, he lands on the sea floor of millions of sandy freckles. Gaining his balance, he discovers that his arms are bound across his chest. Why can’t he move them? Why can’t he move them? Why can’t he move them? Schools of fish dart by on their way to class, and an eel slithers around and between his ankles. Trudging through layers of sloshy sand, his newly formed gills intake water like the sweet relief of exhaling a stale, withheld breath. He walked on, for what seemed like hours, making friends with fish, memories with marlins, telling stories to sharks. This majestic world understood him, his thoughts, his feelings, what he couldn’t share to other humans. Accepted, appreciated in this world; no matter his stance in others. He sucked in aqua through his smile and laughed pearls into the air. Why leave a place so magical? He danced along the sand to the music of the current. His rhythm was interrupted by the beat of another. A strange pattern. An odd sound. The fish began to panic, disappearing one by one. Desperate to never leave, he hid between the shells of clams, behind the rainbows of coral, under fishy friends. Bumd. Bumd. The peculiar drum sounded again, the thuds echoing in rhythmic fear. Frantically, his eyes widened, darting around in a search for an escape. The tears pouring out of his eyes and the sweat oozing from his pours mixed with the salty water of the ocean. He sat, resigned, dizzy as the water began to spin, a cyclone of terror, fast, a melty waterfall. The world began to fade away with each sound of the enemy’s knock. The sand turned to pads, the water dried into stale air, beautiful scenery melted into the familiar, monotonous cushions on the four identical, small walls. The man stopped shaking, leaving only a twitchy aftershock. The door creaked open as the knocks from the man in the white coat ceased. A tray of small portions, inadequate water, and a miniature cup filled with different colored circular shapes placed before him, his only human interaction. The blank, pillowed walls stared back at him as his eyes prepared to explore a world entirely unique.