Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Beginning of the End

Presentation time!  It's weird to think that the end of the year is coming so fast... From now on, I'm going to focus most of my time on the structure and slides for my presentation.  It's coming up very quickly and the more I do to prepare the better.  I'm leaning towards starting the speech with a longer poem than I usually writing focusing on what I've learned about myself through this project.  I think this would be a more unique way to approach it, since many of my classmates will begin with a simple introduction.  So I'm going to work on the poem these next upcoming weeks; hopefully it will end up being about 1-2 minutes.  As for slides during this, I was thinking about beginning with just a simple black then slowly transitioning by having a beaming light shine through.  This would represent the brightness poetry brings upon my life and how it has allowed me to flourish in multiple ways.  Then, I'm going to introduce myself talk about how this year I have become a more decisive person by making decisions that I have always been too afraid to make (i.e. quitting swimming, standing up for myself in regards to friends, and even trying new things like volunteering).  The next step would be to link 20 Time and poetry to the success I've had.  I'm going to talk about how everybody should have the opportunity to relinquish their feelings and think outside of the ordinary.  A lot of times as students, we are pressured to be this perfect person.  As we try to form ourselves to please everybody else, we lose our originality.  At least I know I lost my passion for a couple years when I stopped writing which allowed me to contemplate all my options.  So this will be the main idea of my speech: to incorporate a balance in your life and that it's okay to be your own person and differ from the normal.

I also wanted to include two of the other gothic pieces I wrote.  I don't think they are the best poetry I've written, but they do mark me challenging myself and stepping out of my comfort zone.  I normally would have never tried to write something like this, and I am proud of myself for stepping up to the challenge and trying, even if the result wasn't quite what I was hoping.  Here they are:


Thunder booms shaking the wobbly house
He stays concealed in the dark room
Only a single light beams

His eyes scan the text made visible from the candle
He can hear the wind whipping outside
Hissing at his comfortableness

As he reads he commemorates
The love he felt blossoming in his stomach
Making him feel rich and whole

He remembers her soft skin
He can still feel her tender hand
Stroking his chiseled jaw

He recalls her laugh bursting with life
How he naively believed that
Nothing could ever tear them apart

Until the night where the devil appeared
Knocking at his door
Cunningly tantalizing him

His faithfulness instantly dissolved
Lust prevailed
Clouding his judgement

In the midst of this sin
She appeared at the door
Watching in horror

As his eyes glanced up
To meet her astonished look
She bolted

He quickly scampered out of bed
Throwing on clothes
Desperate to find her

As he headed towards the woods
Running to catch up
His heart pounding

Panic washed over him
Confusion entered his brain
Where did she go?

He stopped and listened closely
He heard a faint crumpling of leaves
Followed by a distant splash

He sprinted towards the lake
In the far west end of the forest
But it was too late

She had positioned a rock above her
Then slid into the frigid water
Suffocating to her death

His head began to throb
His eyes filled with tears
His stomach erupted with guilt

As the memory plays back in his head
The old man reading her letter
Begins to sob loudly

Even when the door to his room creaked open
He continued to wail
Oblivious to the figure creeping in front of him

Her eyes blazed with fury
Her hands were soaked with blood
And hanging out of her pocket was a garrotte

Suddenly the crying stopped
His eyes lit up
“Adrestia?” he whispered

A glimmer of excitement
Mixed with utter confusion
Were in his voice as he spoke her name

A sly smirk slithered onto her face
She inched closer
“Say it like you mean it” she cunningly demanded

Before completing his proclamation
She had swiftly reached the garrote around his neck

She chuckled as his eyes bulged out of their sockets
And as his heart ceased to beat
She murmured to his corpse “karma always conquers”

Manic Frenzy

As I try to disappear into slumberous thoughts
An unsettling noise creeps through my ears and into my brain
Every relaxed muscle in my body becomes alert
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

My head sways back and forth like a metronome
Every second elongates and is absorbed into my body
I feel my eyes roll back into their sockets as time dominates me
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

The blood in my wrists pulsate
A certain lust for pain emerges in the depths of my stomach
My body stirs and arises from the cold ground
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

The jagged floor pierces my bare feet
My eyes are blood red flaming with anguish and desire
My body continues to sway left and right
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

As I continue forth, the sound gets louder
My heart races and my palms begin to sweat in a maniacal manner
The tempo  rushing through my veins rapidly accelerates
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

Suddenly there is a wall in front of me
My hands are clawing upward
My feet are throbbing to the beat
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

The top of the blockade is brimming with ruination
Jagged pieces of metal protrude
Temping me
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

My finger gently caresses a point
A bead of blood appears
A grin creeps onto my chapped lips
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

I press the metal into my wrist
A deep red blood oozes out
My heart beats mirroring the melody pounding in my head
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

As the ticking escalates, I rip out my hair chunk by chunk
My tongue salivates as I bite my own skin
My body throbs to the rhythm
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

A bright light then becomes visible
I look down to see a blurred image I cannot recognize
I hear a mumble
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

The fuzziness continues to wash over me
But one thought is apparent:
I must complete my task, I must not surrender
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

And so I angle myself to the perfect position
And jab my left breast into the stinging metal
Blood gushes
Tick Tock, Tick Tock

My vision blurs into the darkness
My lungs gasp for more air
The ticking slows
Tick Tock, Tick Tock, Tick Tock

Darkness Prevails
As my body fades into nothingness
My bloody remains float away
Never to be seen again

However on the windiest nights
If you listen ever so closely
A faint ticking noise can be heard
Along with the whisper “Tick Tock, Tick Tock”


Friday, March 21, 2014


Theme of the week is gothic literature!  In class, we just wrapped up gothic lit and Poe has actually been an interesting influence in my poetry.  After completing a 2000 word essay analyzing his work, I've learned a lot about Poe and love his work.  I could go on and on gushing about how precise and vivid his word choice is, how intense his plots are, and how flawlessly he incorporates literary techniques.  He's just awesome, and has inspired me to create some poetry revolving around the theme of death and darkness. Here is one of the shorter poems I wrote:

As darkness emerges
A figure appears
Creeping closer and closer
Until his ominous gaze
Meets my wobbly presence 

Suddenly I can’t breathe
There’s a dark hand grabbing
Clasping my neck
Eliminating my breath
His eyes are glistening

Dizziness washes over me
My body crashes to the floor
His hands are off
Yet his gaze perpetuates
As if he’s reading my soul

Something shiny appears
Along with a smile on his face
He steps forward
Crouches down
Winks and stabs

My eyes bulge 
His glisten
My throat bursts with noise
His chuckles
My brain explodes with blackness
His undoubtedly feels satisfied
My body lays
His disappears into the darkness 

I'm planning on creating more gothic poetry; I'm going to focus this upcoming week on creating a longer, more intense gothic poem.  I've noticed that lately my poetry has been more stress relieving than creative, and I think this would be an interesting opportunity for me to step outside the box and try something different.  I really want to incorporate more creative tactics back into my work.  I used to always use symbolism to mirror my actual feelings, but lately I've just been simply writing how I feel.  I leaned towards symbolism a little more in the poem above, but I want to create something much more intricate, and this will be my goal for the next two weeks! 

Saturday, March 8, 2014


In sixth grade, my English teacher really encouraged creative writing and always gave extra credit poetry assignments, which I took advantage of.  And recently, I came across some of my old poetry from they class.  Before re-reading some of the old work, I braced myself expecting the worst, but I was astounded at how well written and deep my work actually was.  I would have never thought a ten/eleven year old would be able to create something so substantial.  My teacher gave us the freedom to explore writing however we wanted, and it showed in my work.  However, throughout the next few years the curriculum was strictly essay based and I didn't have that poetry outlet because I never really thought about writing on my own.  During those years, my life was a little messy and I truly did need something to release my feelings since talking about my issues seemed out of the question.  I didn't know how to deal with my feelings or with everything that was happening.  Throughout the beginning years of high school I began to write again and many answers to my questions became clear.  I finally had a sense of what I wanted towards the end of the year.  Whenever I came across an obstacle, I would grab a piece of paper and a pen and everything would feel a little bit better after.  If I would have had the encouragement throughout seventh and eighth grade to write my feelings than things might have been easier for me.  I'm not saying that writing is everybody's outlet, but I believe that kids should be pushed to find some type of release, whether it be writing, drawing, making music, running, etc.  That's going to be the premise of my speech...the fact that kids need to be taught that life isn't always going to be easy and that's normal.  What isn't normal or healthy is bottling your feelings and never talking about the past.  The past doesn't define you, but your reactions to the past do.  

Anyways, I'd like to share some of my work that eleven year old Jen composed:

Tears begin as lost love. Love being ripped apart or love
Eluding into darkness, disappearing forever.  Crying
As your loved one tears apart from you or as they hit everlasting unconsciousness.  
Rushing to the hospital, your eyes are filled with salty teardrops. Bawling your eyes out over an emotional movie or sobbing over a heart wrenching book.  With love comes
Death.  With death comes lost love.  With lost love comes a tear, 
Rushing down your cheek, burning your lips, as it rolls down your face.  As your
Only child is being diagnosed with a life threatening disease, your
Papa’s heart finally fails, or your frail pet gets hit by a car it’s natural to cry 
Salty tears all over again.

Crowded With Waves

Overflowing waves crash against sharp rocks
My head pounding with music
Day after Day

Thoughts flooding thorugh the ocean
Leaving me in an epic battle of waves
All alone

Dolphins dive deep to hard ocean floors
I dive deep into icy cold thoughts
Numbing my body

Flowing foamy water splashes
My calm nature bursts into crazy spastic essence
Within seconds

Waves grow weary as the sun sets 
My mind is working over time
All the time
Crowded with waves

Sunday, March 2, 2014

20 Time Critique

20 Time has been an interesting journey thus far.  My emotions towards the project were constantly in flux, but now everything has seems to be falling into place.  At first, the project overwhelmed me; I didn't like not knowing exactly what I would be doing and I tried to micromanage my project by creating categories and forcing myself to write poetry that corresponded with them.  Obviously this didn't work out to well...I use writing as my outlet and write my feelings.  I couldn't make myself write about something that I wasn't feeling passionate about.  But quickly into the project I learned to change my approach to "write how you feel - no restrictions" which created the best poetry.

My favorite thing about 20 Time would have to be how it allowed me to realize how important writing is to me.  Writing helps me organize my thoughts and just empty all of my feelings out of my brain and onto paper.  It's a real stress reliever and I'm so glad I chose to incorporate it into my 20 Time.  However, there is one aspect of the project in general that I'm not a huge fan of.  The project kind of allows you to slack a bit...there aren't really any guidelines or benchmarks.  Personally, I have been writing and working on mine, but I've talked to a lot of my peers who haven't been motivated for a while now.  I guess talking at a Ted conference isn't enough of a motivation for them...

As for what I would do differently, it would have to be setting mini goals for myself each week for my poetry.  I really haven't written nearly as much as I would have hoped, but I'm happy with the pieces I have composed, so I can't complain too much. I also might have made myself research different styles of poetry because I tend to stick with the short, precise type style that come to me naturally.  I would have liked to step outside the box a bit more, and I might try to do this before the end of the year!  Other than those little details, I wouldn't change anything too major.  In the long run I've really enjoyed 20 Time.  It was different than anything I've ever done and I'm excited for my speech.  It'll be a chance for me to share my story and beliefs in hopes that it connects to others.  I think that's the best part of it...the speech.  If it was just the project than I might not have even stepped back and looked at what I've done and what I've learned.  

Monday, February 24, 2014


I wish I would have done something over break...but I did get a lot of inspiration from going to Florida!  I'm hoping to write some poetry this week about the warm sunshine and the importance of taking a break everything once and a while.  I feel refreshed and ready to get back into my project.  

Friday, February 14, 2014


Theme of the week: addiction.
Addiction emerges in the most precarious ways...and people frequently don't realize they are addicted to something until it's too late; even the littlest things can become monstrosities. This have never particularly happened to me, but I've watched it happen to many people in my life.  So I wrote a poem about it:

Quite often we are unaware
As addiction begins to surge
Swirling throughout our veins 
Bombarding our thoughts

Even the best intentions 
Get contorted 
Into something unimaginable 

Good becomes bad
Want becomes need
Relaxation becomes anxiousness
Innocence becomes evil

Simple things
Become complex
Intricate justifications 
Conceal the lies

Lies persist 
And grow
Larger and larger
Difficult to keep track

The roller coaster 
Hits it's all time high
Spinning and whirling
Out of control 

Until it breaks
The lies come to an end
Along with the addiction

Consequences burn
But addiction scotches 

Progress: I've been continuing to write along with thinking about my presentation.  I know exactly what the basis of my speech will be about: students need time in the day to explore their passions and find an outlet.  I'm just trying to think of ways to present this and examples of proof I'm going to include.

Sunday, February 2, 2014


This week has been my recovery week.  I studied much more than normal for exams and it paid off, but the effects were pretty brutal.  I was exhausted this week and all I can say is I'm glad my teachers didn't give me too much homework because I just could not focus.  So this week was pretty much a break for me, and this included breaking from my 20 time project.  I'm feeling refreshed and re-energized for this upcoming week and I'm hoping to make some progress with my writing.