Straight from the Heart: Teenagers “tell it like it is”Posted: February 14, 2012
Tilt the halo over my head
I don’t care what the caution tape read
It’s time to get a little dangerous
Let’s fall in love.
Forget the scriptures, forget the past
Conscience and common sense never last
It’s time to get a little curious
Let’s fall in love.
Rachel, age 15
“A Broken Snow Globe”
There’s never been an excuse for ignorance.
Just flags and fags and burning bridges,
just lots of ancient skulls. I sat in my room,
aching as deeply as the warrior
whose heart had been pierced by an enemy’s spear
in his father’s hand.
I liked thinking that every one of the tears,
on its saltwater sojourn down my face,
contained a little universe born of rage.
Wishful thinking; just protein.
I remember wondering at how strange it was that
my father who’s always assured me
that the world would turn its back on me
sooner than he,
would rather me be a murderer than
a lover of my own gender.
And it wouldn’t be so bad, if he didn’t claim to love me
“no matter what”. I cried for him, and I will
again. The worst thing is my father’s love is a burden; he’s
become a cold crutch to me, a necessary evil,
something to be waited out; but
my father isn’t a storm.
He’s the angry tide against my weakening sands,
the frustration that threatens riot over reason,
and I’m worried. I’m worried for him,
and that his last words may be a curse.
I pace, and think of the knives in his heart
from my first true kiss…
whenever it may be.
Mehron, age 15
Hello, my old “friend”,
Been a while since
You were here last.
I know why you’ve come,
And I’ll ask you to leave me.
I know you’re a delusion,
Conjured by a fickle one.
Who knows not what
You light me up falsely,
Butterflies I haven’t felt
Since a November years ago.
Like I’m drunk, lying
In those leaves again,
Asking for you,
Assured I really want you.
“Well,” I’ll say to you now,
“You’ve whirled me around enough,
I’ll sit this one out,
Michael, age 17
Young boys who fall in love
Want to love you
‘til the sun burns out.
They live in the days
Of knights and princesses,
Gently taking your hand
And leading you
To the shining castle
That holds their young hearts,
Give you every key to every door,
they’ll gaze with intent
upon every precious
step you take,
and hold your head
against a warm chest
so you can mesh
with every beat.
Run with you
Out to the lawn
Run their fingers
Through your hair
Brush your forehead
With soft lips
Beneath the starry sky
Of sugar-coated tomorrows –
Purest white picket fences,
And crystal-clear oceans
With shells of undented texture.
But young boys who fall in love
See that same sky
Pushing everything they’ve ever felt
Into the shadows
Of lost souls long forgotten
They change all the locks.
Crystal, age 14
“The Perfect Guy”
He gives me flowers,
Rings and notes,
I return the favours;
Anything for him.
I smile with joy –
No girl could ever be so lucky –
Until reality slaps me in the face.
It’s fun to pretend,
But I must remember;
It’s for her, not me.
Valerie, age 16
I know what you meant when you said
Words sound differently out loud,
And I cover my face
I’m afraid of what I say.
I can hear you’re hungry
When I lay my head on your belly.
So desperate to hear such a sound again,
I starve myself into oblivion
Sandra, age 17
Compilation © Betsy Franco