Two Poems by Pearl Reagler

Pearl Reagler’s poems, “Night Walkers” and “cicada women”, express an authentic and creative use of imagery. Through her powerful use of vivid details, Pearl paints scenes and emotions that bring to life interesting character relationships.

Night Walkers

I have not yet learned how to sleep through the night.

Houston Texas, and then some. Under the oak trees. By the pool white flowers melt like snow.

The air still fits over my body like a second skin.

And the crickets chirp.

And then the rain would pound. It didn’t stop easy. I’m walking down a suburban street, towing a wooden beam behind me. On my phone a man wades through water, clinging to his kayak.

Did you know that there are more stars in the sky then there are grains of sand on every beach in the world? I do.

On my way home a man speaks to his wife on a black berry. He accuses her of something. And I assume she answers.

And the crickets chirp.

There were hills made of dirt in the lot across from mine. A new house about to be constructed.

When I was little, I used to slide down the hill, and scrape my knees raw and red.

There’s a chandelier in my bathroom. It hangs over the four footed tub, heavy, waiting.

I took a picture of a walnut on the deck. It was cracked open and raw, still green on the inside. After I took the photo I ate it and it was bitter.

The grass here is a dry hairbrush, the roads are a ball of tangled yarn.

Cows eat their own shit in a field speckled with star dust. The owner pulls his whip out. The water is poison.

My sister puts her spurs on.

And the crickets chirp.

You’re driving in a car with the freeway backed up. The cars stop moving entirely and we are stuck in a stand still. You bang your head on the steering wheel.

I can’t live here anymore.

You tell me about how you saw a dead horse on the side of the road the previous month.

It was disgusting, fucking disgusting.

A car cuts us off. You slam on the break and curse.

Look at this fucker! Some people need to learn how to fucking drive! Can you believe that?

No, no I can’t.

Honestly.

Honestly. What else am I supposed to say?

Can you believe these crickets? They’re so loud.

On my street there are no sidewalks. The street melds into each yard in the rising summer heat. The night time wanderers can’t sleep walk.

One day on my run, I noticed a white cat venture out into the middle of the road. It’s nose lifted smelling something. I assume it was an incoming storm.

And as it was paused a man in a huge truck with rimmed wheels came flying down the road. I dove for cover, but the cat did not. He was smashed under that truck’s wheel. His insides worming into his outsides like the guts of a ripe berry. I assure you that’s how it happened.

I watched it myself.

 

cicada woman

Under the humming of insects they were married. My mother tasked me with the photo taking. Very embarrassing. Almost worse than photos being taken of me. My thin elbows jutting out. First pimple still stained red on my cheek. When adults turned to meet my eyes, their pupils said, who is this child? Why is it pointing a camera at me? Where is the professional photographer? Where are its parents? Is it ok for me to keep drinking in front of them? I wandered the festivities in a sleep haze, plagued by seeds of prepubescent insomnia. Meanwhile my cousin bragged about a romance film that her mother let her watch.They had sex a LOT, she says, it’s like really gross. We sat in a pile of dead grass and sucked the juice out of worms. Ah yes, I murmur, I’ve seen it too, yes I have, so gross, so gross. Later we went firefly hunting. Running through the tall grass, our mouths stained by chili powder. I had to keep pulling up my shorts because I didn’t have the hips to fill them out. It was my first time seeing fireflies. We have these in Houston, we have lots, I say, trying to look unimpressed. Finally we caught one, squirming, in my cousin’s palms. The lights shone through her thin fingers and tinted them red. Inside her clasped hands I could see the body.

 

watch the inside of

a cicada woman, damp

blood sucked by night lips

 

Pearl Reagler is a student at the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston Texas. Most of the time, she likes to write poetry and screenplays. She also enjoys photography and film.

Visual Arts by: Johnson Anthony 

The Sky Apnea Collection

In “The Sky Apnea Collection”, Ariel Serene uniquely paints picturesque scenes of nature. Her surprising terminology creates a masterful description.

Apnea

Spasm of noontime yellow

Atop aching valley of strawberry root.

The wafting of pumpkin sun

ribbons

across dimpled doughy green.

To collapse here,

To become just a thing

Compressed under heavy

brilliance of air.

The heart balloons as does

The oak

And sparrow.

 

Here also lays wing, broken.

Bumbling oramagmied bird hungry

For carbonated sky,

for a hushed god

In this kneeling.

This building again

Amongst red bulb berries

Dangling from shrub

Swallowing the scent of sunset.

Cartilage cocoon spools

Through and out,

Wing mends as does the

Drunken maid and

Womb.

 

Sky Junction

The ivory’s obsidian counterpart:

Minor exhale twinges to

splinter compressing grey

And red

Dripping down a spine;

Matted fur in a ruffled song.

Do we dance slower now

Or speak underwater,

Where time slips

And gurgles through a palm.

Or

is it the heart allowing it,

A caven cry and leap

In love, I do

The birdwatcher and stargazer

Find mirrors under athick curdling sky

In adeafening dance with liberty,

beheading of gravity

30 feet above

A blistering suburb

Plagued and shredded into sun

And cement

Waiting for return of yesterday.

 

 

Summer’s Sister

Everything new under a young

Blue shadow.

Gasoline rainbow

Cracks under rubber boot. an

October lays her head heavy

Upon sharp wet road,

The brittle dead

Succumb to weight,

Gasped into swirling

Rust and orange.

Fold into the

courtesy after summer.

A quieter bomb, shaggy

And burrowing. the

Frothy atmosphere

Licks bare arms.

Night bites further into afternoon and

sun yolk drips quicker,

Heavy and crumbling with submission.

 

Ariel Serene is a 17 year old aspiring poet and screenwriter living in Los Angeles. Although new to the poetry scene, this determined young writer quickly fell in love with the art and is currently applying to major in English at UCLA.

 

Visual art piece titled “Looking Through The” by Meicen Deng.