The blade glides across the ice, leaving a thin, graceful line. An eruption of laughter from my friends... Something funny on their phones, I thought. We were all training for the junior Olympics. All of us were devoted to six-days-a-week of training; we were almost ready. The oaks surrounding the frosty pond were tall and weathered, but strong in the wind, stern, even still, as they stood tall in the piercing cold. A shaky voice shook me out of my daze, “Hey, you kids better not be on that pond again!” a withered man yelled from his porch, shaking his fist in disapproval.
“We’re training sir!” I yelled back. He started lumbering towards us, “DING” I looked down at my phone, a message from my mom. “What do you want for dinner?” I started to reply then “smack!” Ice cold water surrounded me, gushing through the cracks. I looked up in an almost peaceful yet panicked daze. I saw my friends looking down through the sharp hole in the ice distorted by the bubbles. Shadows consumed me, the light growing more distant every second. Alone, I cried out, desperate to alarm someone or something that the angel of death had come for me, but a dreaded feeling told me my screams were unheard.
I am now a children’s book author and my first book was written for you. I hope for the future to write until my hands turn to dust, but even then I won’t stop writing for you. I also hope that I will be happy for all of my days on earth. After all these years the color of my words are no longer red. They are orange, and yellow, even purple too.
If I were to pick my happiest place, it would be at my grandparent’s house. There lays a beautiful garden, full of flowers and trees. And for that reason, my favorite spot is the willow. With its long flowery branches, covering the grass, surrounding the center, so comforting, with its thick trunk that fits perfectly to my back. It is like my own little spot, with its wall of sorrow that has always been there for me, whenever I am sad or mad. There I can hide from the world and just be who I am…
The wind sways around my face, blowing my hair in one direction. The waves crash on top of the shore line, dancing with the crabs. The smell of the sea fills my nose. But the sun is setting and is casting an orange shadow atop the island. The wolves start howling and all the animals find a safe place to sleep. I step down from the cold hard rock and let my feet sink into the soft sand. The sand slips between my toes and encapsulates my feet. The waves are still splashing and start to fall on top of my legs. I walk on top of a grassy mountain on the island and lay down. When I find a comfortable position, my eyelids feel like weights hanging on my eyes. So my eyes shut and I drift off to sleep on this warm, windy island… off in the sea… away from society.
MT (in the perspective of Jeremy)
Why? Why does everyone in my family hate me? They think I’m weird, and … “different.” I honestly don’t understand it. Why can’t I just run away and be a part of the Logan Family? Maybe I would be accepted there. Everything! Everything I do is criticized by everyone. Why can I never catch a break? Every time I try to be a halfway decent person and walk with the black kids to school, I am whipped. It seems that every day I go with them, the whip gets cracked just a bit harder. They seem to think that hitting me 100 times is going to make me “sane.” People might as well address me as “the outcast” or “the disappointment.” What is wrong with this world, and what is wrong with these terrible people who walk around aimlessly while voicing their opinion. If the world was destroyed, it wouldn’t do anything or create any inconvenience. The only thing we do is exist, and that’s about it.
“Hey yall, I jus’ remembered I left my cap inside. I’m gonna go grab it,” I said, tryin’ to hide the guilt that I felt. I creaked the front door to the ole Logan’s house. Man, I wish I could live like them Logans. Wouldn’t have to Share Crop for nobody. I carefully creeped down the hall pas the wood stove, tryin’ to be as careful as I could. I felt bad about the answers, truly, I did, but let me tell you, I need them. Papa would whoop me so hard if I failed 7th Grade again. And Stacey, man ole Stacey is my best friend. I don’t want to lose him either. I snuck into Miz Logan’s room and carefully searched for them answers. I picked up a book on her desk and sure ‘nough, they was stuffed inside, jus’ askin’ me to take ‘em. I lay my cap down on the corner and started to slip ‘em in. Jus’ then, the door flew open, and all four Logans stared at me. Stacey exclaimed, “That don’t look like your cap,” and pointed at the book. I shook on the inside. I didn’t want Stacey to know until the time was right. I quickly said, “Aw, man, I ain’t done nothin’. Jus’ lookin’ at Miz Logan’s history book. I’m mighty interested in hat placed called Egypt with them Black Kings and all.” I set down the book, the answers tucked safely in my cap, and casually walked out. I’ve learned if I play it cool, people won’t question me. I left with information burning into my head.
Although the music was dim, it lifted my spirits, and the feeling of despair that had crept inside of me, slowly disappeared.
I held on to my little sister's hand, hard and secure. She squirmed and kicked and fought, but I squeezed harder. I couldn't leave the thick crowd. Not yet, at least. Not until my eyes could take but a sip of the event. I closed my eyes, picturing what it could be. I snapped them back open. I looked down at my hand. Where there used to be a small palm was jut sweat and chills. My little sister! I screamed her name but it was no use. The crowd had swallowed her up.
She pushed her way through the sharp elbows. Not a single person budged, even though this note meant too much to her, this lousy scrap of a crinkled dream. She was a weed in a field of flowers.
My heart shattered. My mom wouldn't let me go. My father scolded me with words you should never hear. But still, I had to know. My grandmother sent me off with a note, giving me a kiss and tear on my cheek. She told me to stay safe, but I had to know if it was true. I pushed my way through the crowd. I felt as if I were in a sea full of concerned elders. I couldn't breathe. I had to deliver. I started to scream. They shushed me. If I didn't speak, my message would be gone. Everyone would be in the darkness forever. All because of me. My family would not be safe, and we would never see America.
The young girl shrieked in agony as a cold hand clamped her shoulder. Swarms of black cloth and faces of despair shielded her sight from what lay above. Pushing through the crowd, the girl could feel the others wavering. It was time. In a last-ditch effort, she yanked the dirty hand away, strengthened her hold on the note, and surged forward. Immediately, the air surrounding her began to feel lifeless and full of menace. The girl shuddered and all hope was lost as she forced herself to look up. The man standing before her was thin and pale as a ghost. Her eyes were a piercing black, showing no signs of mercy.
I dashed into the bakery down the street with my 4 euros. My tongue drooled as I smelled the luscious crescents. I wobbled into line. In front of me was a girl with red hair so curly it could be springs. My stomach longed for nothing but a fresh, warm, and buttery treat. Each minute, I inched closer and closer to the front of the line. Then, the curly red head ordered the last crescent left. I stopped, my eyes stunned with sorrow. I stared as she CRUNCH! took a bit of the flaky snack. I slumped my shoulders and left.
I shoveled away another pile of dirt. My hands were sore, but nothing compared to the pain of losing the one I cared for. I laid my hands upon the cold, furry body. My tears peppered the fur with dark droplets. I laid down the body and began to shovel the dirt back into the hole. I buried the body deep, covering it up with piles, burying the body deeper then I'd ever have to go again. Sprinkles, had died. The smell of the pine trees coddled me, and I fell asleep over the grave. I dreamt I could be with her forever.
Me: Why, Spirit? Why would you take me downstairs this late. I need to get sleep so I can be ready for my test tomorrow.
Ghost: Just listen.
Me: Why do I hear the faint sound of water, clanking, and tears?
Me: Mom, let me help you! Spirit, what is she doing at this hour?
Ghost: You have told her to be quiet while you do your homework, while your watch your shows...
Me: Well, I didn't know that she had to stay up all night doing them.
Ghost: Maybe you should have thought to help her before.
Me: But I have so much to do!
Ghost: And so does she!
Me: But her hands, they look so sore, red, and dry.
Ghost: That's what happens when you make people stay up for hours moving their hands under hot water with strong soap.
Me: Spirit, I have learned my lesson. Just let me go so I can sleep through the night and help her tomorrow.
Ghost: Okay, you may go...
Me: And when will the next Spirit come?
As I shot down the mountain, the snow and ice scraped against my dry, cold face. The snow glistened as my skis tore through the piles of snow. Making my way to the end of the trail, I begin to slow down to enjoy the beautiful view set before me. The snow carefully placed on the frosty pine trees. The slits in the trail where past people have been. The sun shining bright through the overcast clouds. You can hear the birds chirping off in the distance, sprinkled among the trees. I decide to sit down and take it all in. The smell of the snow gracefully gliding down to the ground. I catch a single flake on my mitten and study the intricate aspects of this single snowflake. I look out at the village to see lights on in stores, people in restaurants, and cars leaving to go home after a long day of laughter and snow. I notice the sun beginning to set and I head back to the lodge to pack up for another snowy day of fun.
Y = Young Chloe
O = Old Chloe
Y: (She sits on bench.)
O: Oh, hello there.
Y: Hi, isn't today just a spectacular day!
O: Why, yes! Isn't that palm tree just beautiful?
Y: What palm tree are you talking about? All I see is rows and rows of oak trees.
O: Ha, that's funny. I just love life in LA
Y: LA? We are in Medfield, MA.
O: Well, excuse me... (checking phone) I have to go and check On my company CR interior design.
Y: My initials are CR, standing for Chloe Robertson.
O: My name is also Chloe Robertson! I grew up in Medfield.
Y: Well, that's where I am right now.
O: Are you thinking what I am thinking...?
Y: I don't know. What are you thinking?
Y/O: (speaking together) We are each other!
Y: Oh my gosh, I can't believe I run my own company when I'm older!
O: Well, yes. We run our own company right in LA. We are the top interior design brand.
Y: This is so strange! I wonder what else I have accomplished. Please tell me I solved world peace! (Turns to audience.)
Some Selected Work