Dear Reader | By Haley E Sotelo
If I could make music out of these words I would be achieving all I’ve dreamed of
The pulsing rhythm of an iambic pentameter acting as a kick drum
Making you feel the vibrations in your chest
But I can’t turn this one into an organized and pleasantly rhythmed 3 and a half minute song because when you write down your stream of consciousness often times instead of a Taylor Swift song
You get a roaring river that splashes and erodes the sides of your skull with the strength and force of its currents
The difference between an electric guitar riff in the middle of the song and this line right here
Is I can’t make you dance
Overwhelmed with the feeling of those waves coursing through your body
Words and music go hand in hand but the feelings I get from music can only be explained as love each and every time
It would take on hell of a powerful poem to give me wings for 3 and a half minutes
And the permission to fall in love
But that is what I want to do with these pages
I want the ink to jump off of the page and caress the your cheek
Taking all of your problems for a few moments and melting them into a puddle of meaningless doubts and worries
I want you to know that even though we haven’t met yet
The Little Fox | By Evelyn Murray
The little fox trots ‘n trots
He trots through the fall light
The fall light shines through the rusty brown trees
The rusty brown trees shed their leaves
The only sound to be heard is
The little fox crunching each leaf
So light and so swift
The little fox trots n trots
Who We Are
| By Haley E Sotelo
Sunlight, warm and bright
Leaves blowing in the breeze
A part of something
That is beautiful
Mist, gentle, full of bliss
Alive, reaching for the sky
Free, like waves on the sea
Who we are
Meant to be
Dark Tower | Joseph Lieberman
| Acrylic Painting on inkboard
Chirping of Birds
| By Seiji Koenigsberg
They arrived one day, without warning, without any hesitation. Bastards in giant white pickup trucks with giant pictures saying Green Forestry on the side drove onto my land, my beautiful land with hundreds of trees with hundreds of years of age. They marched into my forest and started planning the removal of my trees. I walked up to them angrily, questioning, “What the hell are you doing on my land? You have no permission to be here.”
Instead of answering, one of the workers, wearing a bright orange vest with a blue rain jacket and a red pair of khakis (a terrible choice of color if you ask me), came up to me and looked at me as if I was a child and they were an adult, and sternly said, “We need to put a pipeline from here to the ocean to filter crude oil. There’s no point in resisting. It’s already been decided. There’s nothing you can do about it.” That hit me so hard that my legs felt like Jell-o for a couple seconds. I didn’t know what to say. I was in shock. My forest, with all its beauty, was going to disappear. Realizing it wasn’t worth my time to pick a fight with them, I started walking back to my house. On the way back I heard the birds chirp louder than normal, as if they sensed danger to their home and was warning everyone else. I walked past the trees that would maybe not be there in a couple days. I sat in my house watching those bastards plan.
That night, I ate sushi with salmon so fresh that it seemed to have just been caught that day. It would’ve been good had those people not still been at my house. I sat down at my computer and decided to record myself explaining what was happening to let the world know and not let my story be silenced. I opened the computer and pressed the power button very delicately and waited for the classic sound of an Apple computer to turn on, and I started to record my story.
“Hello my name is Taylor Brown, and here is my story. I’ve lived in my house ever since I was three years old, and currently I’m the only one living in it. Just today these people from Green Forestry, who I have never seen or heard of before today, came to my house and…” I felt a tear drop down my face. I knew it was inevitable that I was going to get emotional but I had hoped that it was going to be toward the end of the video. I decided to continue with the recording.
“… they planned the removal of my trees, and when I asked what they were doing, They said that they were clearing the land of trees so they could put a pipeline from here to the ocean.” I waited a couple seconds trying to control my emotions and I continued again.
“ I don’t expect anything to come of this but I didn’t want my story to be silenced so here it is, my story.” I stopped the recording and uploaded it to Facebook. I then turned off my computer and rested in my hammock in my room, trying to stay calm and relax for a little bit. About an hour later, I checked Facebook to see if anyone had seen my video, and sure enough only a couple people had seen it. But one comment caught my eye. It said that they would show up tomorrow in solidarity and try to prevent the removal of my trees at all cost. That comment filled me with happiness and with that happiness I went to sleep. The next day I wake up earlier than I had in several months. five o’clock is way to early for any human being to be awake. But I did it anyway because I wanted to see my trees for as long as I could before they got cut down. At around seven, a group of five people showed up at my house. When I asked who they were one of them came up to me and said, “Hello, I saw your video from last night and couldn’t help but feel like we needed to help, so I got a couple of my friends to come support you with me.”
“Ok thank you so much,. Feel free to leave or stay for as long as you want.” I responded. I offered them something to eat but they said they were fine. Promptly at nine o’clock, we started to hear a terrible sound. Metal hitting metal, making screeching sounds so bad it seemed to be from a different world. The five people and I stood in the driveway preventing the trucks from entering. After about an hour of a stalemate, the trucks reluctantly left. Then the same person said to me
“This is a lot bigger than I thought it would be. Listen, I have some connections to big forest conservation protest groups who are very experienced in this area. I can have them come and help.” I said that sounded like a great idea. They then left and I spent the rest of the day in my hammock in the forest. The next day there were 10 people, then 37, then over a hundred. Within a week, a couple groups came and they brought all sorts of equipment and I was shocked to see how much could be planned in such a short amount of time. By the time the people in the white pickup trucks arrived we had around 500 people, and as soon as they arrived all 500 of those people erupted in boo’s telling them to get the fuck off my land. It was really a surreal moment to see all these strangers that never knew I existed until the day prior show up and care so much about my trees. The people in the white trucks didn’t know what to do and so they left. The entire crowd cheered very loudly and we all celebrated. The next day I woke up yet again at five and people showed up yet again at six. The people in the white pickup trucks showed up at nine just like the day before and we didn’t allow them to get anywhere and they eventually left again. This happened for months and made national television. Eventually, the state government sent out a message saying:
“We have decided to listen to the will of the people, and those people have spoken. They stated very clearly that they do not want a pipeline running through their lands. And so, we have decided to terminate the pipeline plans. From henceforth, there will be no pipelines running through this beautiful land.”
As soon as I read this to the crowd, we all exploded in cheers. We had spent several months working on getting rid of Green Forestry and it felt amazing to have the government step in and stop it for us. We then all took down the equipment very quickly and everyone left looking very proud of their accomplishments.
Once everyone left, I walked into my forest, which somehow was still standing, and sat there, listening to the birds chirp with joy.
Object Lighting Project #1o
| By John Adair | Photography
The Kettle | Madison Potter
White knuckles test my patience.
Eager, you check the clock: What does it say?
That it’s not over.
Feel like you’re filled to the brim with it.
All the while you stay poised.
What could that feeling be?
Pressure upon the ribcage. Surge of agony nestled in your chest cavity.
Gums numb. Jaw tight. Adrenaline tickles your fingertips.
Hot. Pounding. Pulsing. Poised.
Give it time to ferment in your belly and you’ll regret it, or maybe the others will.
Might erupt but to save time you only simmer. Who are you saving time for, anyway?
When you leave a kettle you don’t blame it for boiling over. You blame the one who wanted tea.
| By Cece J.B. Degn
Behind the man’s dull blank eyes, Confusion grows in power,
Taking over the man,
The man runs trying to flee from the laughter of Confusion.
An alley seems to be the best spot for this losing fight,
The man lays letting the rain try to aid his warbound mind,
Questions continue to surface,
What is truth?
The man no longer knows,
All he can do is stumble back home with a white flag raised.
Confusion has won again,
He walks triumphantly through the thousands of minds he has conquered,
He looks at all the poor helpless souls,
All the minds that he has demanded control,
Those that needed clarity,
All the minds that he cried, “SURRENDER!” too.
MemoriNation | By Joseph Lieberman | Etching with aquatint
Water | By Jeshua Robbins
Take a deep breath, son,
Unfocus your eyes for me.
Look upon the sea,
Know that you can swim its breadth,
And live for the water’s touch.
Listen Up | Madison Potter
If you’re hard of hearing,
Because I’m often soft-spoken.
But maybe today,
Maybe for once,
You’ll have to retreat back
and let your eardrums coil.
You’ll have to gaze up at me
in confusion and wonder,
“Is she mad at me?”
I sit in silence yet again.
I wonder, wait, and groan in my head,
But I always find myself back in that familiar creek,
dampening my knees and hoping to god that this time you’ll actually hear me.
I keep going out further
connecting with the current
and slipping along the algae-caked rocks.
But I trek along anyway
because you are a part of me;
because I’m naive just like you;
because I’m your daughter;
What else am I to do?
You hear nothing but I tell you everything,
and at some point the luxury of murmurs you take for granted
slowly fades into an absence.
You look up from your end of the table,
from your side of the creek,
But there’s nothing there.
There’s nobody waiting for you.
Nothing but a foggy clearing
with some loose lichen dangling from trees,
waving me off in the distance.
So can you hear me now?
Hanging On The Edge
| By Marley Axemaker
My heart is racing as I lay face down, balancing on the edge of a cliff. Al’s hand starts to slip from mine as the sweat from running and the blood from our injuries make our hands slick. Blood is trailing down my arm from a deep gash that runs from my shoulder to halfway down my forearm.
“I’m slipping, John.” I look down at Al and see that the gash on his forehead has reopened and blood is running into his blue eyes that match mine. His dark hair is matted to one side of his head.
“I know. Just hang in there.”
“What do you think I’m doing, taking a nice stroll in the park?”
“Not funny.” A slight smile gracing my face. “Give me your other hand and I’ll try pulling you up.”
Al lifts his arm with all his strength but his fingers brush mine before his arm falls limply to his side. “I can’t do it. I’m just too tired.”
I know what Al is saying is true because the rocky soil of the cliff crumbled away each time I tried to pull him up. As I look down the cliff at Al’s terrified face; I see a ledge that looks about 3 feet wide, approximately 10 feet below his dangling legs. Maybe I can drop Al and hope he lands on the ledge and does not fall to his death. Or do I continue to hang on and waste more of both our energy with the real possibility of him slipping away? Both options could either end in death or with both of us safe. I weigh the options back and forth in my mind, hoping to come to a decision. I can’t believe that just a few days ago, I was curled up under my warm, dark blue covers being woken up by banging echoing throughout my apartment. I had flipped onto my stomach and buried my head under my pillow, hoping whoever was there would just go away. Abruptly, I sat up and remembered that today my younger brother, Al, and I had planned on going backpacking in the mountains for a week. Slowly I made my way to the door and flung it open.
“Do you know what time is?” I asked, annoyed.
“It’s time for an adventure, my dear brother,” he said as he pushed himself in through the doorway.
“Go get dressed and I’ll make you some coffee. Extra sugar, right?” he said as he pushed me toward my room.
I walked back out of my room, wearing my jeans, hiking boots, and flannel. I could smell the aroma of dark brewed coffee. As Al handed me my travel mug, I grabbed my waterproof backpack with everything I would and could need to go backpacking. We hopped into the car and made our way to the Cascade Range. When we finally arrived, it was early afternoon. As soon as we were ready, we started our hike. As late afternoon rolled around, we took a break and set our stuff down on the ground. As we were relaxing, the ground started to shake and Al and I could hear the sound of trees breaking and a rumbling sound like thunder getting louder. With a sudden boom, the ground was no longer beneath us. Rolling and tumbling downward, sharp rocks bit and tore into my arm. Al’s head connected with a rock that was flying through the air, creating a gash on his forehead. We finally slid to a momentary stop at the top of a cliff, but with his weight added to the already unstable ground, Al disappeared over the edge. Luckily a little bit of luck was on our side and I was able to grab him with a death-like grip.
Finally, coming to a decision, I decide to put Al’s life in fate’s hands and let him go.
“Do you trust me? There is a ledge below you. I’m going to let you go and you’re going to land on it,” I said determinedly.
“I trust you, John, but if I don’t make it can you tell Jane that I love her and that I’m sorry for stealing her notebook back in 8th grade?”
“You can tell her yourself when we get back,” I said with a smile that did not reach my eyes.
And with that, I let him go and watch him fall with an awaited breath. I want to look away but I can’t. I am transfixed, watching him fall in slow motion. With a solid thud, he lands. Looking up at me, he gives me a goofy smile and a thumbs up. Falling back with a breath I did not know I was holding, I stare into the cloudless, dark blue sky and whisper.
“I swear if he had let me sleep in for five more minutes. We wouldn’t be in this mess.”
Oceanic Playing Cards | Mary-Frances Case | Digital Illustration
In Reality | By Haley E Sotelo
A poet walks into a bar
And that’s all
That’s the joke because you see
The funny thing is
The poet is at home
She is sitting in her sweatpants with her hair up in a terrible bun
Impressions of her eyelashes
Copied onto her skin from her day old mascara
A bottle of the cheapest moscato available
Poured into a lipstick stained coffee mug
She is typing her fingers to nubs
Wracking her brain for words that rhyme
Words that are perfect
Words that will appropriately tell the world
To fuck off
Flit | By Jessica Molina
a red door.
wisp of smoke.
As I try not to
I want to
On that door.
RestSpiritStory | By Joseph Lieberman
| Color-roll etching
Wet | Jessica Molina
Life moves laterally
it’s shadow elongates
then rises in breath
wind on wind
except with rain.
open with spring
in their innocence.
Two Detectives | By Jacob Adams
Two Detectives explores the story of a curious young boy who’s father tells him about his first case. The story offers everything from action to themes of family. The film was produced over five months with the help of 27 individuals of Team Foreel, made up of LCC students and other talents, both professional and amateur: Executive Produced by Jefferson Goolsby. Produced by JaShawn Clark, Director of Photography by Collin Gruener, Script Supervision by Hoa Mai Nquyen, Technical Produced by Caleb Lowery. The film was directed, produced, and co-wrote Jacob Adams.