“The Seal of the Confessional” Excerpt

First two pages of my story “The Seal of the Confessional.” If there’s one thing I love about writing fiction, it’s taking characters and completely destroying their spirits/putting them under immense pressure. In this, I’m beginning to destroy a Priest. My mind.

Father Daniel Halloran, of the Old Cambridge Baptist Church, could smell something vulgar through the latticed opening of the confessional, much like car exhaust. It was a smell for blackened lungs and while it wasn’t so much a physical smell, it did creep through his nostrils only to caress his brain and every wrinkle on it.

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Sonnet Man

(A response to An Ache, Exploded, over a year later)

 

Sonnet Man touched my body.

Haunts me still

 

He’s unkempt & greedy,

whines like a siren—the creature,

unlike the warning bell I

desperately needed

He crept his satyromania into

every conversation, injected

his guilt-complex into my cerebral cortex

 

He’s powerless now, a cyber ghost

wandering his screen like a nomad

 

Sonnet Man,

it hurts that I can’t say your name

& I’m never feeling evil enough

to place the blame

You left alive

I stumbled away in pieces, ravished

Let’s count the wounds:

A red palm from when you slammed

my hand onto your jeans

(not just once, not twice,

not three nor four nor five,

but eight times)

& a black/blue/purple brain

 

I can speak about it now,

can’t hurt a memory’s feelings

 

I won’t rest until you remain

unknown to women.

I lick my wounds like an

undernourished animal

as the first step

to the rebirth

of my divinity

& amour de soi

 

Sonnet Man, I ask you—what’s

the point of being a monster

when you have no teeth?

O’MG They’re Back: Krispy Kreme’s St. Patrick’s Day Doughnuts

It’s time to crack open a bottle of Baileys Irish Cream. Krispy Kreme’s O’riginal Glazed Doughnuts are back this St. Patrick’s Day. This year, for the first time ever, the green gold at the end of the rainbow will be two consecutive days straight on March 16 and 17.

It’s no secret that the company uses green dough and the same, unmistakeable sugar glaze. Even YouTube’s best food critic is aware of this, but there is no better treat for family and friends this upcoming holiday weekend. Buy a dozen to share with the office—office talk about going green doesn’t have to pertain to the environment this time.

A complete list of participating locations across the United States and Canada can be found on Krispy Kreme’s website

Watch: Harry Styles Performs Unreleased Songs at Tour Kickoff

Harry Styles kicked off the tour behind his much-anticipated solo debut last night in Basel, Switzerland. His 17-song setlist consisted of material from his debut, old One Direction songs to remind fans of his days as a member of the global sensation, and two covers: the song he wrote for Ariana Grande titled “Just A Little Bit of Your Heart,” and Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain,” which he just won an iHeartRadio Music Award for.

Of course, Styles is that rockstar, having surprised concert-goers with not just one, but two unreleased songs. “Help me take my medicine,” Styles coos on unreleased track “Medicine.” And on “Anna,” he rejects a woman’s sympathy because she doesn’t know exactly the effect she has on him—a consuming-with-desire-for, an aching effect, at that.

They would’ve been good additions to his honest LP. Watch videos of both performances below.

 

2.16

Act I

Considered plucking the rose from

my chest and littering the sidewalk

with it;

Other women brought

bouquets so I no longer feared

I’d be singled out at the gate

 

Voorpret intensifies

 

When the sun was no longer

suspended in the sky:

women hopped fences and

a man asked for extra tickets

while my head shook like

a blurry photo,

whips back and forth

in the cold

Wind a nemesis I faced for you

 

Act II

After circling around the sun

together four times, I finally

see you face to face

This moment is

eternally ours,

only

 

Act III

Hell’s Kitchen brings tears

Your octave continued to spill

over my ear

Now I wander around like a

wispy dream,

I close my eyes and

see the memories they’ll

never know

Product Review⎮ Benefit Cosmetics: They’re Real! Big Sexy Eye Kit

On the eighth day of January my mother gave to me: six eyeshadows…and a sponge that’s quite gimmicky

Most people don’t have a middleman when it comes to makeup products, but luckily enough, I’m constantly graced with beauty hand-me-downs from my maternal relatives. Recently I was gifted Benefit Cosmetics’ They’re Real! BIG Sexy Eye Kit, which is essentially an eyeshadow palette with three paired eyeshadow duos, a rounded sponge, and a mirror built into the bulky kit.

Benefit 1

The three eyeshadow duos are composed of neutral shades, each with grandeur names:

  • Beyond nude: champagne and cappuccino
  • Naughty neutral: soft pink and rosy brown
  • Bombshell brown: taupe and sable brown

The colors are gorgeous. Within each duo is a satin shade and a soft matte shade, perfectly paired together. If you’re not completely sold on one of the duos, have no fear! Benefit Cosmetics sells all the duos separately at $24 per palette. The singular duo palette also comes in additional colors that the trio doesn’t have. However, buying the three colors together in this palette is the best option, as a $72 value is yours for only $36.

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when people ask me, I say

when people ask me, I say

 

I’m stealing his eyes

in an assemblage of bodies

familiar faces

They don

charcoal outlines &

coruscate teeth

 

In awe of you before me

Two types of feelings

engulf me like twin

serpents,

sinful, entwined:

 

  1.  We’d be better separate—

A match &

gasoline

 

  1. It’s all in frame,

an involuntary fantasy,

a supercut

We move like oil paintings

our lines blend into each other

our strokes brisk

Sugarcane byproducts mess with

our organs

The clock reads 0:00—we

burst & we start over

primal rush

People envy us—

we steal their glances &

hoard them in the limited space

between our torsos

The supercut concludes

when we study each other,

parallel, drawn-out stares

 

These warm nights with you are

wild, and meaningless

Product Review⎮Peter Thomas Roth Acne-Clear Invisible Dots

I haven’t loved a sticker this much since preschool

My mom was casually browsing Sephora’s website—her only mistake of the day; she can never casually browse any website that sells a product without making her wallet cry out in sweet, sweet agony—when she turned her laptop screen toward me to reveal a particular acne product to her acne-prone daughter.

I can’t pin-point when it started, only its worsening growth over the years. I’ve tried all of the face washes on the market; Neutrogena, Aveeno, Burt’s Bees, La Roche-Posay, Cetaphil, and more. The summer before my senior year of high school I had cried to a dermatologist, afraid that every spider bite would transform into a pimple, and every acne scar would be a badge of shame. Though I was prescribed a topical lotion and an adapalene gel at the time, neither did anything to stop new pimples from forming, lessen existing ones, and heal acne scars. But my mom was hopeful; she kept ordering new products every few months and encouraged me to return to past ones—secretly we’re both masochists, hell-bent on either humiliating our bank statements or our skin. Then she decided to try one more product, and while I was hesitant to try it, having been fed up with putting my skin through sustained changes, we finally found something that worked.

The Peter Thomas Roth Acne-Clear Invisible Dots are sold in two sizes; essentially a large or small deal, where the large pack contains 72 dots (also recognizable as circular adhesive patches) and the small pack contains 24 dots. The pack of 72 dots contains 6 sheets with 12 dots per sheet, and is contained in a light blue tin. The pack of 24 dots lacks the convenient storage tin, and only contains 2 sheets with 12 dots.

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BØRNS Announces New Album, What’s Her Name?

Blue Madonna

For the people who are bad at remembering faces but terrific at remembering names, here’s one: Blue Madonna.

Garrett Borns, who goes by the stage name BØRNS, has finally announced the title and release date of his long-awaited sophomore effort. Blue Madonna is set to release next year on January 12, but not without already receiving public praise. High-profile fan Lana Del Rey recently promoted his LP, claiming it’s “one of the craziest, best records [she’s] heard in years.”

Earlier in the year, the Michigan native released two singles titled “Faded Heart” and “Sweet Dreams.” Both are illustrative of his ability to find refuge in his falsetto and in poetic, glitzy lyrics.

The glam-rock artist became an instant sensation in 2015 after the virality of his song “Electric Love.” He’s come a long way since then, and while his debut album explored the ideas of love, emotions, and sex, fans are excited to see the identity of his upcoming release. 

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What's her name?

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Nonfiction Excerpt

The house seemingly ages along with my grandparents.

Below is an excerpt for my nonfiction class. This piece is titled ’48 Duncan St.’ and follows the relationship I have with not only my grandparents, but the house they’ve lived in for over fifty years.

That house seemingly ages along with my grandparents. The skin on Papa’s hands peels like the lid of the painted toilet seat; Nana’s teeth fell out like the knobs on cabinets did; they had a bad storm one year that took all the ivy off the wall in their backyard, but it would grow again in the same way Nana’s hair would regrow after the doctor said her cancer was in remission; Papa once collapsed in the same manner their folding chairs seem to snap; the last few times I’ve visited them there has been a chocolate chip cookie on the floor behind one of the couches, forgotten about by Papa just like how he sometimes forgets my name. The cookie was there the last time I visited, crumbled and scattered, and I thought if his brain wasn’t like that yet, then it would be soon.

With love, Alyssa