Nonfiction Excerpt

Carmeltucky: Like Kentucky but Worse

Advertisements

I’m taking a nonfiction class this semester, and this is an except from my first graded assignment about the town I grew up in and where I still currently reside. It’s titled, “Carmeltucky: Like Kentucky but Worse”

One Thursday afternoon after school my mom reminded me of the fact that Goodwill was supposed to pick up garbage bags full of clothing donations, and she sent me to our front porch to see if they had made their journey down our driveway and seized our bags in the same manner a pigeon would a french fry: swoop in and leave with it immediately. I checked the porch only to see that the bags were still there, piled on top of each other like nesting bowls. I told my mom and she opened her address book to find their number.

She tucked the phone between her shoulder and ear. “You didn’t pick up my donations!” she exclaimed, followed by “I live in Carmel.” She stood there in silence as the person on the other end spoke.

When she hung up the phone I asked, “what happened?”

“They said they picked up our donations,” she said, staring at me, her face washed blank with confusion. But there was a moment when her confusion turned to shock, completely cadaver-like, simply lifeless and pale. “Oh my god. Goodwill took our garbage.”

I imagined the workers ripping open the bags of putrescible waste masquerading as clothing. Fermenting liquids warmed up from the morning sun amid banana peels, cat litter, curdled milk. Every time someone would enter the area they’d be gunned down by waves of nauseating stink, acrid smells. They’d curse, maybe search the surrounding donations for a gas mask. Our local Goodwill no longer accepts our donations.

With love, Alyssa

*Featured Image was taken from my living room on a rainy day, and is of the park built behind my house

Diary of an Intern

Quote me: “seriously if I get a job at a publishing house and am forced to read an epic I’m gonna mcfreakin lose it” xoxo

Today marks the first week of my internship at a literary magazine (I’m l i v i n g!) where I am an assistant editor. Well, maybe not my first full week, as I started yesterday, June 1st, but there was a lot of work to be done and I haven’t seen the sun so I’m counting it as a week.

Continue reading “Diary of an Intern”

Guided Writing Portrait

Insegnami a Volare translates to he/she/they (singular) taught me how to fly. I’ve just finished intermediate classes for the language, no biggie.

I’ve just finished up my sophomore year of college (all A’s!) and have finished up the class necessary to take in order to work in the writing center. In that class, my professor introduced several ways to guide ones writing for our projects on literary sponsorship. My guided writing portrait–

Assignment: Choose someone who appears in your literacy narrative draft and write portrait about them. One paragraph. Based off the directions given in class.

Insegnami a Volare

We had been seeing each other after school on Thursdays for a few weeks straight. Each session I brought my Italian text book, Amici, that she adored thumbing through, the cover striped to mimic the flag: red, white, green. We bonded over Italian hand gestures, signaling we both had a bloodline relationship with Italy that water couldn’t loosen. Both of our ties to the country were as strong as steel, and together we fleshed out each other’s stories about heritage and the language itself. It was on these Thursday’s that we’d sit down in a classroom on the fifth floor, adjacent her office, and remind ourselves of basic and complex words, cultural experiences that occur in Italy, and of the sights we were set to see. It gave her a Mediterranean smile. A wide smile, wide like her wingspan, which slightly stretched the neckline of whatever dress-shirt she wore. We had a lot of laughs during our session and I often find myself wishing we could meet after school every day to click more and more. It wasn’t hard for me to feel this way, in fact one Thursday we spent an entire half hour talking about the cats that roam freely in the colosseum in Rome. We made mountains out of molehills in terms of meliorism of the language.

Soon enough, our sessions finished, we were on the plane to Italy and were adjusting to Rome. Days later she and I sat on stairs in Venice that overlooked murky, dark blue water—the smell of the Old Rock Cafe a yard from us was of potent cigarettes. She was like a guardian angel, I realized the first night in Rome, after I was sick and she waited outside the bathroom for me with a stick of gum. Fantastico. She taught me to fly abroad—insegnarmi a volare.

With love, Alyssa

Writing While Sick: Bare With Me ‘Cause I’m Quite Quick

and 5, 6, 7, 8

I’m sick and a little loopy so I’m writing this to update the few of you who read my shit on my life. More on my sickness– I’m dizzy, waiting on a bagel that may never show up to my doorstep, but at least I’m not so high I’m sitting on my bed trying to buckle my seatbelt… yet.

Continue reading “Writing While Sick: Bare With Me ‘Cause I’m Quite Quick”

Text Message Poem

A poem composed of texts I have received or sent, all from different people.

Texts With Friends

 

Another leaf tucked behind my ear

Will he see that at 48 Duncan?

 

there’s no one behind me

Mom is sleeping.

 

I’ll take a dark and stormy if they have

 

Jail break…

Are you crazy?

I’ll drive some of them over the bridge

How opposed to riding in the trunk of a car are you?

text-message-poem

With love, Alyssa

“It Started With the Magnifying Glass” pt 1.

The featured image is of the comments my Professor wrote at the end of my story for our class’ workshop. I cried when reading it. It was all I ever wanted to hear.

The featured image is of the comments my Professor wrote at the end of my story for our class’ workshop. I cried when reading it. It was all I ever wanted to hear.

Continue reading ““It Started With the Magnifying Glass” pt 1.”

Concert Review: Grouplove Can Never Stop My World From Spinning

A friend of mine and I talked about the Grouplove concert I went to last Saturday, and thanks to him, I came to the conclusion that this has been the greatest concert I’ve attended. Is it taboo to consider the latest gig the best? I thought so – but Grouplove are truly back in business, and don’t mess around. Well, actually, they do mess aroundbut that’s all part of the show.

Continue reading “Concert Review: Grouplove Can Never Stop My World From Spinning”

September by the Bay

I still ask myself, was my hair actually akin to Lombard Street?

One drummer

Plays in his one-man golden gate garage band on an askew street

Cymbals echo for several blocks

 

My father yearns to question tourists, though

If he says

“I am like you,” it

Nullifies my memories.

 

1.  A man hiding in the bushes, unaware of his own scent

Cannabis and salty air,

Startled me as I ate

 

2. An ambiguity between legs and

The trees of Muir Woods that only

Made me question my vision–

Was my hair actually akin to Lombard Street?

 

I am not like you

 

Mom made me stand in every cell in Alcatraz in front of

Decaying walls like sunburned skin

I can’t bind myself to this history, and to suns that bleed like molten lava

With love, Alyssa

Upbringing

I turned nineteen today and finished this poem in the car while on my way to celebrate with friends. Growing up is a daunting task, but so is growing apart from who you used to be and who you used to visualize yourself as whilst aging. I don’t perceive myself so poorly anymore.

Upbringing

 

I thank my roots

For growing from

Imperfect weather patterns and learned helplessness

Where

Obviously is too harsh a word

      Obviously you should try harder

      Obviously your feelings are hurt

Well,    obviously, not everything is written on my bedroom door

And     obviously you should find a synonym

 

Ask me what town I’m from

I’ll tell you

I’m from

Toilet lids,

A strategic game and

Arriving early

All of the above in urgency

 

I’m from movement

Sometimes lack thereof

See me in

Potential and

My mother’s face

Chewing on words instead of sustenance

Find me as vexing as scum

In your open wound

But far less noticeable

Hear me

I’m from a loud voice

Presented as a miniscule sea shell with the ocean

Inside it

 

My grandmother likes to mark her

Grandchildren’s heights against

Her wobbly basement door

One poignant

Fight from falling off

Its hinges

Every time I stood

Against it

A ruler and a pencil scuffled my hair

And once my eye

And the

Thought of one day growing up

Worried me, though

 

What petrifies me

Is growing        apart

From all of’s and from’s,

And obviously

This

With love, Alyssa