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Cairo grins at me in his teenager way, part love part mischief. "You are now breathing... on automatic," he says. And so suddenly that process I was unaware of is there in my thoughts and as my breathing pattern changes he laughs in the same way he did as a little child. So I laugh too, and then there we are, too beautiful idiots laughing together on a rainy day.

General

Yolanda held up the coffee grinder, the lid bound tight with yellow caution tape she'd rummaged out of the garage. Her mom frowned, "I'd bet you money that doesn't work anymore."

Yolanda placed it on the machine and in an instant the noise of the traffic outside was drowned out by the machine. "See, not broken, plus it's twenty seven percent cooler; no extra charge." She jutted out her hip for her right hand to fall on.

Mom developed one of her lop-sided grimace-smiles and raised her drawn-on eyebrows. "Hmmm, twenty seven percent cooler and fifty eight percent crapper."

Yolanda burst out into one of her roaring belly laughs, "Yeah, and what was the bet worth?"

Mom let out a snort, "Nothin', it'll be broken by Tuesday."

By Angela Abraham, @daisydescriptionari, September 3, 2015.
General

Marissa sat on the decades old green couch, not ever noticing the faded patches. Her still scrawny legs dangled over edge just like they had when she was small, but now her toes tapped the dusty boards as she sat back and listened to her music. With her eyes closed she let the lyrics flood her like an early summer breeze. They weren't always upbeat, but they soothed her just the same. If these singers felt just like her, maybe she wasn't alone after all. With all thoughts of homework forgotten she brought her knees up to her chest and sucked in the smell of dinner being cooked.

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The old woman just sat, sat and listened to the tale of her granddaughter, Tabi. Times had changed so much and so little. The technology was all different but the tale was the same. High-school was awesome for the “in” kids and hell for the rest. She raised a withered hand and stroked Tabi's back softly like she was a kitten. She felt the heaving and shaking through Tabi's union-jack t-shirt. Her eyes were red, puffy and snot streamed clear from her nose. The old woman passed a tissue before speaking in her slow and measured voice. “You have one good friend, Tabs, that's good. It's all most folks can hope for. Teenage girls can be very cruel. They can hate you for being too pretty, too smart, too popular with the boys, looking different, being fat, and just because they want to pick on someone. We all love you and school doesn't last forever. In a few years they'll be out of your life and we won't. Then you can make mature friends, ones who aren't raging bags of hormones.”

General

The room should be empty but it's not. A boy sits in the corner, he could be a beefier reflection of my older brother but he's not Jack. He stares at me with eyes that tell me he wasn't expecting my company either. His lips almost move then his eyes dart back to the frayed laces of his runners. I want to know what he was going to say but it's just not a good idea. We are never alone, not really. From behind me comes that scent of jasmine the director wears and I turn to meet her eyes directly. It's odd to be at her level, just six months ago she was obviously taller. I want to ask her why she gets make-up and perfume and I don't but I already know what the answer would be. I get my black uniform like all the others and a pack of hair bands at Christmas from "Santa." In her hand isn't the usual dossier but two. A joint mission. Hell. I don't even know this kid. How don't I know him anyway? It's not like the academy is a big place...

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Tom ran his hands over the silvery bark, feeling the blisters, the curling. It was like the paint that flaked from the side of his house, coming loose under the still soft skin of his hands. A few years in the mines would take care of that, a few years in the darkness breathing in black dust. He pushed harder, the bark cracked and fell confetti-like before being lost in the woodland litter. The tree was cold under his hand and above the boughs were already naked, swaying almost imperceptibly in the wintry breeze. Soon it would grow tight buds, then they would crack open to reveal the soft-pea green of new papery leaves. When that happened his life in the sunshine was over. Sixteen. The day he became a man. There really wasn't anything he wanted less.

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To the ancient oak in the backyard her entire life so far had been like one sunny afternoon, passing quickly and soon forgotten along with all the other days that had no stand-out excitement or tragedy. At fifteen she was ready to explore the entire world, learn languages and new cultures. But with her back to the rough bark and several acorns poking into her jeans like beach pebbles she cast her eyes to the autumn sky. Her life in this place was coming to an end, she could feel it. But unlike this waning season she was heading into the summer of her life, not the winter. She had her youth ahead of her, stretching out like an untrodden path into the mist, it's destination unknowable. Her eyes caught the chords of light that streamed through the already yellowed leaves. One day she would do the same under a Mango tree in the Caribbean, under a pine tree in Russian boreal forest, under the boughs of an olive grove in Italy.,,

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I was born into an upper middle classed home and the teaching began right after birth. I had the most stimulating toys money could buy and a moderately priced nanny to keep me amused. I loved her, I remember her still, but when the job ended she left and I never saw her again. School began, a little pressed uniform and a kindly teacher. We learned through songs and recited our alphabet. There were after-school clubs, then home to eat dinner while Mom and Dad made their evening phone calls. Each day blended into the next and the only thing my parents ever asked me was about my grades, not my feelings, not who I was. Then when the pressure intensified and I found I couldn't get the grades they demanded, the punishments began. A mark less than an A in any subject meant “privileges” revoked. Then I met Gregor.

Gregor got grades like they were gifts from above and said he had no intention of being anything his parents would approve of. He was like me, handed from “professional” to “professional” since birth, never feeling truly loved. But he took my hand and told me I didn't need to do anything to impress him, I didn't need to pass math to be his girl, but I was free to outshine him academically in every subject and he wouldn't mind a bit. “Exams are just hoops for the corporate world, it's how they select us, like sheep from a pen. Then we do their tricks for food and shelter until we're mutton and too old to dance in the sun. Dance with me, Olivia. I don't promise you riches, I don't promise you the suburban house and a picket fence. I plan to spend my life making and designing products for a greener world, I don't know if that will keep us comfortably or not. But I promise to love you faithfully for the rest of our lives, and I mean the kind of love that puts you before anyone else, the kind of love that would face down the devil himself to protect you. Will you come with me?”

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On the top was flawless black skin and eyes that shone brightly - making Erica want to get to know the person within. She watched him move, there was something of the warrior in him combined with a gentleness that made her heart reach out. He put the engine together like he'd been doing it all his life, every movement competent and flowing. She bit her lip, how could she start a conversation when she didn't know him? Then in that instant he turned and caught her eye; before she could turn away with shyness a genuine grin spread across his face, turning it from handsome into divine. In that moment she felt her body flush warm. This was a person she wanted to know more than she'd ever felt before. This was a guy she could love for eternity.

By Angela Abraham, @daisydescriptionari, February 16, 2015.
General

When your teenagers can move from a loving family into a loving world where they are welcomed as a blessing, where all work is voluntary, and everyone’s skills are understood to be valuable, there won’t be "problems" with teenagers anymore. The teenagers are alright, better than that, they’re wonderful. They are a gift from the divine and bring new energy to life. But it’s hard to transition from child to adult when the main lesson is “sink or swim,” “dog eat dog,” “Mommy won’t be there to hold your hand anymore” and “you're not special to us unless you can do really hard math.” Really? Then you wonder why they go off the rails?

Try instead, “we really need you,” “we love you for being you,” “we love you always,” “you came to us as a precious spark of the divine and we are all here for you.” Try that and watch them blossom, watch them become the angels they have always been inside. But, we were talking about carrots, right? I really do go from one thing to another quite fast. I just want to help you make your minds clear and free thinking. It’s such a blessing to be able to think! Can you stay a bit longer today? I just feel like being with you. There’s something special about being together, right? I feel my whole body relax when you visit me...

By Angela Abraham, @daisydescriptionari, April 7, 2015.

Authored by Daisy, here.