Sweltering Christmas

Frozen hearts could thaw

By your sweltering embrace.

The crisp winter breeze

Never kissed your finger tips.

And the whitest snow

Broiling beneath your boots.

I never knew a Christmas

So devoid of the bitter

Cold I once suffered

Before you.

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Arete

– From the Greek language, meaning “excellence of any kind.”

While finals are undressing my sanity and the lack of sleep weighs down my eyelids, I somehow still found a sprinkle of Arete in my step today.

This morning I could have been mistaken for a cast member of The Walking Dead. Running on only three hours of sleep, I will tell you I still had the biggest smile on my face throughout each class I fell asleep in.

I bought a cup of coffee without any coffee in it, and then had to return to the cashier to ask if I could go back and fill my empty cup. The woman held back a burst of laughter and said, “Oh honey, you need it.”

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Milk and Cookie

I think you and I are as different

As a warm cookie and a cool glass of milk.

There is nothing similar about either of us,

We come from different ends of the kitchen.

You rest in the pantry and I chill in the fridge,

You are a solid and I am a liquid,

You crumble and I spoil.

We couldn’t survive together.

But above all of our differences,

And despite our ability to coexist,

We are an exceptional duo.

And one hell of a midnight snack.

An American Dream

Athens, 1939

I was drinking my morning coffee on the terrace, same as I do every morning, with the roar of car horns and ambulances sweeping through the streets below my feet. The buzz of this city pairs nicely with my mood: anxious, restless, and excited. Athens never skips a beat, not even then in 1939 when war is beating down Greece’s door. I lift the welcome mat behind my chair, the place I stash my father’s finest cigars, and light one up before the big journey. Inhaling the smoke from that flavorful montecristo, I remember thinking about giving them back to him before I take off, but then he’d realize I took them, and saying goodbye would have been much more burdensome.

I toss the ashes out from the tray over the railing and make my way back inside, the cigar tucked neatly inside my pocket. Mother is packing away everything I don’t need, the routine of her hands and feet masking the worry on her face.

“Ma.” I wait for her to stop folding my socks, socks I probably won’t need. “Ma, please stop. It’s almost seven, I have to get going.”

She doesn’t stop. Instead, she continues to fold my shirts, my pants, my underwear, and all other items that will most likely be thrown over board if I am caught. I rest a hand on her shoulder, humming her favorite old folk tune. She relaxes and I can almost see a smile tugging on her cheek. “The boat will be cold at night,” She finally looks up at me, “At least let me pack you a few extra pairs of socks.”

“Nicholas,” My father enters the room. His hair gelled tightly behind his ears and gut tucked firmly beneath his belt. He places today’s paper on the counter and picks up his coffee with both palms. I assume it’s so that he has an excuse not to hug me goodbye. “All packed I presume?

“Yes, Papa.”

“Got your bags?”

“Yes.”

“Crew pass?”

“Yes.”

“Are you sure that thing will work?” He eyes my white pants and jacket with the navy blue trim, then studies the identification pass strung around my neck.

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Twenty-One Changes

You turned twenty-one

You drink now, but not excessively

You party more than you use to

You work harder than before

You have new friends

You have more freedom

You feel invincible

You say you’re more mature

You changed your way of thinking

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Fishing In The Meat Department

Is it a coincidence that men will always find a woman most attractive when she in a relationship? Is it strange to think that we are most desirable when we are unattainable?

Take my friend Nols, for example. Men were practically lining up at her dorm room all of last semester. All finely cut pieces of meat, if I may add. However, she had been in a committed relationship with a senior up until graduation day when it was decided that this piece of meat had an expiration date.

Now, single and ready to mingle, Nols is ready to get back in line at the supermarket. Resting on the shelves before her are pounds of freshly chopped beef waiting to be sautéed. The only problem, none of them are smart enough to jump in the cart.

It is a rare sight when a fine looking lady puts her self out there in the most obvious way only to be shut down. I am also positive that none of these men realize how blatantly obvious she is being about it. And if I have to hear about how my housemate isn’t getting laid one more time I may actually travel to the supermarket myself, buy some milkshakes, and lay them out on our front yard.

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False Epiphanies

My creative writing class teaches us about the art of different topics in writing. This week was all about epiphanies. Here is the fictional snippet I wrote during our 15 minutes of free writing class time. 


Then it hit me, Jack thought of me as more than a friend. His smooth talk and charismatic flirting, the way he sprinkled on the compliments as we were growing up. That blue eyed wink – oh – that baby blue eyed wink.

That evening after everyone had gone to bed, I snuck out of camp to find his tent. I knew exactly which one was his, the olive green with five gold stars on its fabric. Approaching his tent I became wary of the noises inside. There was laugher, female laughter. Jack was not alone.

I knew then that his infatuation with me was not real, but a tease of my own imagination. we had grown up together, of course I would have confused his charismatic personality with that of flirting. We were friends, and that is all we would ever be. I backed away slowly, keeping my head up high and my breathing low as I disappeared behind the trees.