Talking to a Girl

What to do, what to do!
If you have not discerned already, I’m performing a perilous act: thinking
And I am thinking of an even more dangerous creature: a girl
How can I speak to her?

My sisters gift me conflicting counsel:
Stay true and blunt, tell her everything
Or keep it close to the chest, play at hard to get and have her chase you
I have tried both!

But when I speak my mind
I end up speaking too much and saying too little
My mouth does not know when to stop moving
And my brain is NO HELP

As I try at mysterious and secretive
I bury my heart in a labyrinth
Smother it with a stoic persona
And petrify it with a stone face

She begins to look at me and treat me as if I’m some broken vase:
Not quite sure what to do, she keeps her distance
And doesn’t even try to get near me
Let alone reach out to me

One method scares her away as if I dropped a demon in her lap
While the other leaves her feeling shut off and locked out
O, what to do, what to do!
How can I tell her?

How can I tell her that merely the thought of her smile brightens my day
How can I form into dialogue that her laughter pushes all badness away
How can I say that her tears are the last thing I wish to see
How can I show her that by her side is the place I wish to be

I know what you’re thinking… you just did
But let me tell you a little truth the world has hid
That is not how this works
That is not how any of this works!

I do not know how or why
But a little voice tells me that if I even make an attempt
I will regret it as the worst mistake of my life
It is that same putrid, little voice that tells you to jump

Go ahead, taunts the evil Jiminy Cricket of my mind, go ahead and try
Go commit verbal suicide, and wave bu-bye to any chance at a retry

Needless to say, I wish to exterminate this pest
It spits its poison in my ear everytime I try to confess
And causes me to do the one thing I actually regret:
Not telling her the truth, and now I’m depressed

What to do, what to do!
How can I tell her what my heart says is true
Without that worm between my ears infecting me with fear
To the very point where I freeze when she comes near

Now I am petrified, I can’t even say “hi”.
Hi. (pause) Hi. Just start with hi–
Say it. Say hi as she walks past.
I’ve gotta start somewhere

Oh, here she comes, Lord help me!

– Jonas Micolucci, The Haverford School, Class of 2016

The Story About Liking Stories

Hey, You. No, not the other guy, You, the one reading this. I have a secret… (even though by now, it is probably not the best-kept secret). But, meh, I’ll tell you anyway.

I like to write. Ahhhh, yes. It feels good to say it on paper. Wait: you don’t believe me? Ohhhh, I know what you must be thinking, “Bollocks! I call bollocks! You, sir, are a teenager and a high school student at that. How can this be possible!?

I’ll tell you how, you nay-saying, hollow, Milk Dud: I can enjoy a good story. Thick plots full of exquisite pictures painted on cranial canvases, masters of expression creating concertos of emotion and language from the ephemeral whims and wishes made by flawed characters. My mind’s appetite finds these scenarios most delectable. I seek out such scenarios in literature so that I might temporarily escape into fantasy worlds and La-La lands.

Before I found my passion for stories, I still retained some attraction for writing. Well, to be honest, that’s not exactly true. I enjoyed the passive forms of writing and storytelling, reading and listening. My “La-La Land” fixes came from both my mother, who often told me tales of her life, and Rick Riordan, author of the Percy Jackson series. Together with my “La-La” dealers, I enjoyed story after story, year after year. I was content, counting on the fact tomorrow could only promise me more happiness. I was naive to think so. Because on July 30th, 2014, shortly after midnight, my life was changed forever. My mother passed away.

Now, before you get all teary-eyed on me, I remind you this isn’t that kind of story. Without my mother, I lacked any stories for escape fodder, so I decided to honor her memory and delve into writing myself.

Mind you, before this point, I despised most types of writing with the burning heat of a thousand  

suns. And so, to my earlier critics, I grant you half credit, (feel free to pat yourselves on the back). Essays drew most of my ire. Callow as I was, I saw no point in them. The additions of hand cramps, slow writing speed, and lousy handwriting certainly did not help my stance. I only had interest in exploring creative landscapes and horizons, leaving little energy left over to expend on argumentative papers and analytical reports.

Even so, I have come to realize that there is room for creativity in arguments and reports. Most obviously, you have to actually create the darn things first, (you may think I’m being sarcastic by saying that, but I actually had to feed myself such a line over and over again in order to get myself writing. Yes, I was that helpless). The second obvious thing I realized is I could keep my current writing style: just in the form of an essay. An argument must have ingenuity to be truly superb and an analysis must have depth in order for others to accept it. Eureka! I had found the answer!

Now, I need only to pass several tests in order to prove I can become a superb writer. My first test lies in front of me, Senior Year. Maybe, just maybe, after I break through, I can successfully perform in my dream job as a fiction writer. Maybe, I can provide the same escape from reality, which I was given, to another. And maybe, I can help others find their own entry into La-La Land.

My opinion of writing has changed over the years. Not too long ago I held the opinion that being a “talker” was one of the worst things you could be. I imagined every politician-like character as a weak, silver-tongued, snake who couldn’t make a living in the real world. A younger me thought every human being should aspire to become like warriors: noble, brave souls who knew what problems held them back. These dashing heroes would always combat such obstacles head-on with an arsenal of strengths.

As for now, I like to think I know better. Surely, one who can hold their own in conflict still commands my admiration, but a battle of words and of wits can be as much or even more of a crucible than a contest of strength. The occupation of a Bard can indeed be glamorous. After all, who actually tells the ballads of great warriors anyway?

– Jonas Micolucci, The Haverford School, Class of 2016