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Sep 30


Everything was almost perfect.

but everything was off.

by a step.
by a smile.
by a perfectly flipped hair.
by a giggle. 

Everything would have been perfect,
If it had just gone the way 
that she had planned it.

But nothing had gone the way
that she had planned it, 

because it wasn't perfect. 

It could have been perfect
if he had paid attention. 

It could have been perfect
if she didn't keep her tears inside,

It could have been perfect
if her smile wasn't fake.

It could have been perfect 
if she didn't have to be there, just to see. 

It could have been perfect
if she didn't care for him so much.

It could have been perfect
if she didn't have to be a friend.

It could have been perfect
in a million other ways.

But nobody else could tell. 
Nobody else knew.
Sep 25

how to write to a stranger

Dear (Absent) Dad,

Guess what?

You missed it.

Time goes by so fast,
(you blink) 
and then it's gone.

You missed
the birthdays 
and the graduations
and the colleges
and the parent-teacher confrences
and the signatures
and the weddings
and the kids.

You missed it. 
Where are you now? 
Are you married?
Do you have kids? 
Where you there for them through it all?
I hope you were.
They don't deserve what I got.

We miss a lot of things in life. 

the (beat) of a hummingbird's wing,
whispered words,
a day of work,
glances in the dark. 
how the sun 
off of the waves
setting them on fire
even though they are wet. 

But (only) strangers miss 
each other's lives. 
Sep 12

A Reference List for 9/11

What to do on 9/11 if you're Middle Eastern or Muslim.
  1.  Look at the ground, breathe steady in and out, hope that nobody notices the occasion.
  2. Wince whenever anyone mentions the date and the chorus of sympathies and 'oh man's' that follow.
  3. Flinch at every word coming out of everyone's mouth because you're afraid that it will be another comment that jabs at your skin, jabs at your very being.
  4. Notice that not many people notice the occasion but you, because they have that privilege, to forget, oh, to forget everything it brought on.
  5. Be extra careful with what you say. No wayward comments appreciated. 
  6. Avoid the news that day.
Sep 10

The In-Between Place

Have you ever felt in 

Have you ever felt like you
don't belong?

Have you ever been stuck in the middle of stars
and earth?

Have you ever wondered if there was ever going to be
another like you?

Have you been stuck between two countries that both
hate each other?

I am not quite white, 
and I am not quite black.

I am not Christian,
and I am not Jewish.

I am not hated,
but I am not loved.

I am a stranger in America,
and a stranger in Iran.

I am not quite here,
yet not quite away.

I am not quite good,
but I'm not quite bad. 

I'm not quite Arab,
but I'm still Middle Eastern.

I am always,
but not quite
in between.

So if you've ever been 
not quite something in your life,

join me in that in-between place,
Aug 30

Go out

let me tell you about pulsars.
In binary star systems, 
there are two stars that 
revolve around each other.

they form pulsars.

this is when one of the stars
starts taking materials 
from the other.

It takes and takes 
and spins faster
until the two beams of light
came out of either end.

and the other star?

it's gone.

that's what you are to me.

a pulsar. 

you stripped away my layers, 
and i thought it was only because you wanted
to know the beautiful core.

but as we lived, 
in the light of long-dead stars whose
silent screams never echoed,

you ate away whatever was left of me,
and shined brighter yourself.

bursting in bright beams,
the light you had taken from me radiating 
so nicely on your skin.

and everybody told you how good you looked,
Jun 08


Editor's Note: YWP needs your help! We're gathering your thoughts on what Young Writers Project means to you for a campaign to sustain and grow this amazing, creative space for young writers and artists! If YWP has had an impact on your life, please respond to our    "YWP Is ..." challenge.

 YWP is a place where
(only a couple) 
people know me,
and i'm comfortable with that,
i'd rather hide under a mask than 
have people know when they read,
who i am, 
where i come from 
and all things in between.

Dec 28

Will you listen?

can you remember who you were,
before the world told you who to be?-unknown

are some words 
they use to describe us,
failing to reckognize the damage
they wreak upon us,
because they were perfect at our age,
they want to "protect us".

They ignore our wreckless actions
and dismiss them as us seeking attention,
when they are really cries of help 
for somebody to notice and take action.

They tell us not to be narcisisstic 
because caring about ourselves is a sin,
so we try and we try,
and the feelings of guilt start to arise.

They listen to our stories and then they tell us
that it will quickly pass,
that they struggled in adolescence but 
it won't be important later in life
when what we are looking for 
is not advice but an ear that will not 
tell anyone what has happened.
Oct 18


Yeah you, reading this.
I know, at one time in your life,
you have had one insecurity or another.
Some part of you that says,
I am not perfect, and that is not okay.
But I'm here to tell you that everyone has those insecurities,
and the same girl or boy that you 
admire because of their good looks,
their charisma, their personality,
They might have the same insecurities that you have,
because when they look in the mirror,
they see not perfect. Not okay.
And this insecurity is  a terrible thing,
that we have to deal with, ESPECIALLY
in middle school and high school.
It can eat you alive if you don't fight back,
and your whole life will be a wild goose chase,
of trying to make people think you're perfect,
But then stop for a moment and think,
really think, about the last time,
that you saw someone 
be ABSOLUTELY perfect.
Oct 18

Describing the Impossible

I asked my friend for a writing prompt,
and she said,
describe me. In a poem.
And I said I can't do that,
and she said to just deal with it and start writing.
Where to begin about you.
You're....... Everything to me,
but let's just start with the basics.
Your hair is dirty blond(though you say you're brunette,
and your eyes are a deep shade of blue.
Your smile is amazing, though I don't see it often,
and your deft hands can draw a scene
of the stars in the sky(which you say isnt good)
but, in truth, it's amazing.
You always pull your hair back,
though it's beautiful when it's down,
it looks like a lions mane.
And you don't talk in front of crowds,
you wear hoodies every day,
but at the same time,
you open up to me,
and to me it's special,
and I wouldn't trade it for the world, because,
I love it how you fiddle with your pencil and 
Oct 18

Peter Pan

Well, My name is peter pan,
I've come all the way from never land to 
take you on a trip.
What do you mean you 
don't want to come? 
You don't trust strangers that 
come to your house in the middle of the ni-
Oh. Okay. I get it, That sounds really creepy.
What's that? You didn't think I accepted girls
into my little band? 
Oh no no no...... 
I don't think you understan.
I am a girl! 
Why did I fall in love with Wendy?
I didn't fall in love with Wendy! 
That girl was an idiot! And honestly, SUCH an airhead.
Now tiger lilly....... she's a good one. 
And honestly, I only posed to be a boy to be more accepted 
by Victorian era culture and quite honestly,
modern day culture.
Oh, you think that's not fair? Well, that's the way the world goes round!
So........ I was thinking. 
All my past Lost Boys were idiots.