New Normal(s) – Poem

We have waited for so long,
are still waiting
for life to feel "normal"
again. What I do not know,
what none of us know,
is what normal really was,
and what normal will be
going forward. We keep moving
forward, trudging on,
just like we would in any time,
any crisis. Back outside now,
more people in the streets,
masks peeled off 
our sweaty faces in the summer
heat, it is time to smile, chat
with strangers again.
Not everyone is ready
& neither am I. 
I am sitting here, the wheels
in my brain moving a mile a minute
thinking this does not feel
normal
anymore.

I hope you all enjoyed this piece! Now that restrictions have been lifted where I live (in California/in the US in general), life is returning to “normal”, but that doesn’t mean that everyone’s completely comfortable with that, or that this global health crisis is over. If you are in a country/area/state where COVID cases are still high, please stay safe and healthy– stay safe and healthy out there, no matter where you are. I hope you are all doing okay.

Brooke

Here to See – Poem

In quiet moments: casual dinners
at the table, drawn to our respective

phone screens on the couch, a short
car ride, we examine each other

carefully. I feel seen even when you
don't talk to me, and I am here to see

you, always. As the days pass,
I appreciate our comfortable silence

more and more. The curves of one's face,
slight turns of the head, the somehow

so perceptible tone of one's footsteps--
these are the things we notice

as the days stretch and bleed into 
each other, and we are still together.

I hope you enjoyed this piece! I honestly wasn’t completely sure where I was taking it, but I figured I’d still throw it out there since some of the imagery was interesting. Feel free to leave feedback and writing challenges in the comments. Stay safe and healthy out there.

Brooke

I Love Endings – Poem

And I'm not just talking about sunsets--
although I do love a pink-orange sky cutting
through grey clouds settling in--
I love hugs and being surrounded by people
I love and certificates printed on thick
cardstock and "see you later"s because
we don't know where our paths will lead us
or if they will cross again but we know
change is coming, new chapters are starting,
new memories are ready to be filed away 
in our brains. I love endings because
they are really the same thing as beginnings,
and the chaos of transitioning in between
is what we (perhaps unknowingly) anticipate
with every shift.

I hope you enjoyed this little piece, even if it’s cheesy! Don’t mind me getting a little emotional at the end of junior year 🙂 I hope you all are having an amazing summer and/or amazing end of your school year! Please feel free to leave feedback and writing challenges in the comments. Stay safe and healthy out there.

Brooke

Overgrown – Poem by Me

So much has changed in so little time
and yet we are still here; seems to invalidate
our progress, doesn't it? Hair longer,
the new plants in Mom's garden sprouted,
our favorite fruits back in season.
Contented sighs of more to-do lists
checked off, days crossed off on the calendar
and under our belts. And yet, that only
makes me feel more out of place. Ready
for the next thing, the next year, always moving--
where to next? I am tired of sprinting in place.

I hope you enjoy this short piece! It was inspired by the upcoming end of my junior year (absolutely insane), which despite being jam-packed full of hard work and occasional meltdowns, still felt uneventful because of all the time spent at home and/or alone. I hope you all are finishing/have finished your school years strong. Please feel free to leave feedback and writing challenges in the comments. Stay safe and healthy out there.

Brooke