Tuesday, July 29, 2014

My Blog is Moving!

Hi everyone, that's right, I'm moving my blog. I'm now on wordpress and my blog has a new name. On The Wrinkle Of a Cloud. Check it out and subscribe there to keep up with my writing. :)

They often say the best place to start is the beginning. When I look back at how I arrived here, starting this blog, I find that I can’t really pinpoint a beginning. Was it on that day so many years ago when mom had us kids write down our goals? “I want to be a famous author” young Kate scrawled in wobbly letters.
Or maybe it started when I wrote my first story about two sisters and a birthday present.
Perhaps it was the hours upon hours I spent playing out complex stories with my little brother. An epic combination of action figures, castles, light sabers, stuffed animals, My Little Ponys and Littlest Pet Shops.
Then there’s the weeks and months after a camp friend’s death I spent scribbling in my journal and thinking about life. It didn’t seem fair that someone so young would die. “She could have been so much.” I wrote over and over, trying to understand, to make it mean something....Click here to read on.

Saturday, May 24, 2014


She’s the one
Locked deep inside,
With angry thorns
Pressed into the
Softness of her heart.
Every day words
Fall as a torrent of
Shrapnel bloated pride.
With each insult said
She tucks hope into
The depths of her soul,
Waiting for spring to soothe
Her frostbitten spirit.
For summer to thaw
Walls that breathe
Only lies.
Spring creeps forward
Gentle rains trailing down,
Smile cracking from the
Weight of her mask.
Fingers of sunlight
Tiptoe under the door,
Unlatching the bolt.
Shy blossoms unfurl,
Uncertain wings catch
Summer breeze and suddenly
Freedom! Flight! Song!
She had a voice.
Feet safe, roots of hope
Starting to grow.

I wrote this poem for a project in my literature class. It's based on the character, Janie, from the book Their Eyes Were Watching God.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Letter To A Weary Heart

Dear Weary Heart,

     I know that today may have been hard, maybe yesterday was too. And the day before that, and the day before that one too. Sometimes the clocks drag tired hands in perpetual circles and yet no times seems to pass. The day seems to never end, yet when it has come to a close the hours have passed all too quickly. The sky is clear and yet raindrops fall against your cheeks. You feel caught in the middle of a storm, worn thin, as Bilbo said "stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread". Take heart, have courage, remain steadfast. Remember that by tomorrow today will have ended and you can smile again.  Never, ever forget how wonderful you are, that you have great value and no one and I mean no one could ever be a better you.
     Keep going, don't give up you aren't alone in your feeling of isolation. You're not the only one who has journeyed between these mountains. There are many who have made it to the other side of the shadow and I have confidence that you can too. It may not be okay today, but it will be.

"I can see the storm descending on the hill tonight
Tall trees are bending to Your will tonight
Oh, let the mighty bow down
At the thundering sound of Your voice

I can hear the howling wind and feel the rain tonight
Every drop a prophet in Your name tonight
Oh, and the song that they sing
It is washing me clean but

How long?
How long?
How long until this curtain is lifted?
How long is this the song that we sing?
How long until the reckoning?

And I know You hear the cries of every soul tonight
You see the teardrops as they roll tonight
Down the faces of the saints
Who grow weary and faint in Your fields

And the wicked roam the cities and the streets tonight
But when the God of love and thunder speaks tonight
Oh, I believe You will come
Your justice be done, but how long?

How long?
How long?
How long until this curtain is lifted?
How long is this the song that we sing?
How long until the reckoning?

Oh, the reckoning

You are holiness and grace
You are fury and rest
You are anger and love
You curse and You bless
You are mighty and weak
You are silence and song
You are plain as the day
But you have hidden Your face--
For how long? How long?

And I am standing in the stillness of the reckoning
The storm is past and rest is beckoning
Mighty God, how I fear You
And I long to be near You, O Lord

How long?
How long?
How long until this burden is lifted?
How long?
How long?
How long is this the song that we sing?
How long until the reckoning?

And I know that I don't know what I'm asking
I long to look You full in the face
I am ready for the reckoning"


Saturday, March 15, 2014

She Was A Frosted Window

Jaimie was a window frosted from the winter cold. Many people scratched pictures and words into the cold that clung to her glass. They tore back little pieces of moisture to see what lay on the other side. They cut through the swirling patterns made by the frost and got mad at her because her beauty was broken. Through the lines in her frost you could see sadness and bitterness pushing against the glass, burning against all restraint. Slowly a bit of the frost melted and dripped down the window pane, leaving another trail for people to see through. They laughed at what they saw, murmuring about what a mess she was. They took out their needles and markers and wrote names for her in the frost and in the clear spaces of her glass. She pulled long dark curtains down over her glass and refused to show her face for fear of what others would say. Her friends gave up and she was alone. So I touched her gently and whispered songs of warm days and waited for her to be ready so I could wash away the pain that clung to her glass.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Place of The Bleeding Sun

The bleeding sun
Spills into the night
Like a bath of crushed
Rose petals.
This every day eclipse
Of love and hate,
Dark and light,
Day and night,
Quieting the house
Until as shadows descend
It shivers again.
Nocturnal creatures
Creep from the deep
to live ‘neath
the light of
the faltering stars.
And she shivers there
In her corner of the night
Wrapping thin words
Like a blanket ‘round her heart.
This child of the eclipse
Of love and hate,
Dark and light,
Day and night,
Keeping no home but
The place where
The bleeding sun
Spills into the night
Like a bath of crushed
 rose petals.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

What Holds Her Together


She is woven, like glass
Transparent as the sea.
She is hard, like stone
Soft as a threadbare quilt.
Her smile is a cup of tea
A frost-dusted rose.
Her hands are a soft-petal touch
A raindrop too much.
She is sweet like apples
Sugary as a dream.
She is hidden like roots
Clear as a star-pricked sky.
Her laugh is a folded moonlight ream
A bleeding sunset breeze.
Her eyes are a basin of ambitions
A colander of wishes.
She is chilled like winter
Cold as the ocean’s spray.
She is alone like fog
Collected as a horde of seashells.
Her fingers are brushes on a keyboard canvass
Raven feathers dipped in ink.
Her voice is a choir of bells
The hush of a barn owl’s wings.
She is tired like a heavy dew drop
Whimsical as a quiet old book shop.
She is healed like stiches in fabric
Frayed as rips in denim.
Her heart is an oozing snake bite
A bravely guarded attic.
Her life is a wilted candle
A dripping cube of ice
She is waiting for the sun
A breath of light barely begun.
She is waiting for the rain
Content with withered grass.
She is looking but cannot see
Alone, her own detainee,
Her prison is paper thin.
Held together by the words
She refuses to believe.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Youth Groups Have Cliques Too

Hey everyone! So, today's post is quite different from what I usually post. I have been prompted by several people to post it here, so here you are. :) I have a couple poems and other prose-ish pieces in workings for the next several weeks, so hopefully I'll be a bit more active here.

Youth Groups Have Cliques Too

It is Wednesday night and you step through the doors of the church for the first time. You watch the teens around you and try to smile and catch someone’s eye, but no one sees. You approach a group of students who seem nice and stand within their line of sight, not sure what to do. It has been years since you set foot in church, now you are nervous, unsure of yourself. When they don’t take notice of your presence, you continue on and stand at the outskirts of another group of students, then another and another.  Not one person acknowledges your presence, not one person says hi. You are disappointed; Christians are not really any different from the other teens at school.
            Many youth groups have cliques, closed friendship clusters that interact exclusively among themselves. R. Knight (Personal communication, Oct. 8, 2013) said that, “Basically, your personality has very little to say in the matter of cliques.  You're in or you're out.  But when it comes to discrimination, if you're different, you're an outcast.” Peer groups serve as panels that help members define themselves and sift teens with into neat categories (Gainnetti & Sagarese, 2001). These groups form a social hierarchy that creates a definite “in” or “out” caste system. The higher up in the system a clique is, the more defined its rules are, the more exclusive they are. They infuse feelings of superiority in some and inferiority in others. Cliques cause teens to erect an image of themselves that they hope others will like; this smothers the uniqueness of the individual through conformity. In a clique, a student can feel safe and in control.
            There are people who believe that cliques are not bad, that they teach teens important social skills that will later benefit them. While teens do learn socialization through cliques, what they learn is not healthy. They learn that they are only valuable if they fit into a group. Students learn how to interact with those who have similar interests, but ignore those who are different from themselves. This gives potential to conflicts between groups and division in the community.  Cole stated that cliques “prevent many social contacts from taking place and reduces the effectiveness of those that do occur.” (as cited in Sociometry, 1963, Vol. 26, No. 2, p. 231).
Some people will say that cliques are not really an issue in youth group. That is not true; the cliques in youth groups are merely more subtle. Rejection is usually covert and sometimes unintentional.   It becomes harmful when students become too comfortable in their groups and are unwilling to try to understand others. Cliques create an unwelcoming atmosphere that drives away those who want to find out what Christianity is about. Cliques offer acceptance, and seem to fill a person’s need for affirmation. The only way that cliques can change from closed clusters to close friends is a change in mindset. Ultimately, only the students themselves can change the atmosphere of the group. Leaders and parents have the ability to influence their teens to break away from the clique mentality. They need to take advantage of this impact by assuring their students that they are accepted, by encouraging them to make a change, and by providing low-pressure ways for them to interact.
Leaders and parents can affirm a teen’s need to belong. One source explained that a big step in helping an adolescent know that they belong is to be there for them (Gainnetti & Sagarese, 2001). Leaders and parents can influence teens tremendously in this way. Sometimes people fail to realize the significance in merely pausing and listening to another person, it shows the person that they are valued, not just for what they do or how they look, but for who they are. Everyone desires to be accepted and there is only one who can truly satisfy that desire, our Creator. The first step in helping teens to be truly willing to break from their cliques they must have their needs met in Christ. Leaders can help by reflecting Christ’s love in their interactions with people. 
Encouraging a student to make a change and intentionally build relationships with people they would not otherwise interact with is important. The adolescent may be uncertain of their ability to start a conversation with someone they do not know well; reassuring them of their capabilities will help them be confident in themselves. Once an adolescent is sure of whom they are and no longer dependent on their peers for value they are ready for the challenge of stepping outside their comfort zone.  By communicating with people who are different than they are, they force previously unconnected groups to merge. Peer leaders who do this would impact the community greatly, because the teens who look up to them would follow what they do. Students would grow on a personal level and gain leadership skills.
Providing ways for students of different interests to interact is a good way to embolden teens who are attempting to get to know others who have different interests. Ice breaker games are good example of this. These games provide ways for students to work together as a team and get to know each other in a low-stress environment. Leaders could also number students off for breakout groups after a lesson. Ideally, each breakout group would have about five people. Discussion questions would be provided and afterwards, the leaders could ask each group what they came up with to answer the questions. This would compel students to work together to answer the questions and to share about themselves with others in the group.
 In conclusion, students should seek to understand those who are different from themselves and be welcoming to each other and to new students. This will cause the youth group to a warmer and more welcoming environment. Adolescents will interact with their close friends who share common interests as well as with those who are different from them. Many students will grow on a personal level, and the community will be a thriving place for students to collaborate and grow.
If nothing is done, cliques will become tighter as friendships between the members grow. Adolescents will become less welcoming and make decisions based on their peers’ opinions. They will learn to value what others think of them and hide their uniqueness for the sake of being accepted. Students may begin to form the feeling that their group and preferences are superior to others which would cause division and disagreements to arise between the cliques. This type of youth group would poorly reflect what Christ has called Christians to be.
The next Wednesday you step into another the church, unsure of yourself and apprehensive because of your previous experience. Soon, one of the teens catches your eye, he smiles warmly and breaks away from the others he was talking to. He greets you and introduces you to the group. Each of the teens makes an effort to help you feel welcomed. As the night goes on, other teens greet you and encourage you to play the group game with them. Before you realize it you find yourself smiling and laughing with the other teens. When it is time for the lesson, one of the teens invites you to join them. At the end of the night you leave with the feeling that this is a place where you will be accepted. When you get home, your sister asks, “Which youth group did you like better?”


Charlene C. Giannetti and Margaret Sagarese. (August 30, 2001). Cliques: Eight Steps to Help
            Your Child Survive the Social Jungle. New York: Random House LLC.

Dexter C. Dunphy. (June, 1963). The Social Structure of Urban Adolescent Peer Groups.
Sociometry, 26(2), 230-246.

Monday, January 13, 2014

We Survive

For the all the broken, lonely hearts out there struggling against the shadows' chains.


We Survive

      Tired words formed against her tongue. Bitter, like mama's herbs. Her lips were pressed tightly together; the words were too weary to escape their prison. She knew that if she let those words drip from her mouth as they longed to, they would fall upon her listeners ears, sour, dry, disgusting - like herbs. She knew also that they might slowly heal the pulsing wound on her heart that she wrapped so tightly with half-lies. She could barely hope for that though. Hope was scare in those days and she hardly dared to spend it on something so painfully precarious. Because of this and because she was afraid, she kept quiet, watching the darkness settle around her. It took root in her silence, her lies, memories, her pain, her aloneness. As she watched  it stole pieces of her courage, a small price to hide the blood that soaked her hands.

      She lived this way for a very long time. The shadows taught her how cover the deceit in her eyes with well-timed smiles. They taught her how to remain unnoticed in a crowd of people, they taught her to absorb everything she saw and heard and how to leave when danger showed its face. The darkness taught her many things, and it took many things from her in return. There was one thing that she refused to give them, those words that still weighed against her tongue, smoldering gently like ashes. The shadows punished her for this, they attacked her and made her believe terrible things about herself, but still she would not give up her words. Time shuffled onward and she learned she could disguise those words in other words so they were not so bitter and the shadows did not know they were slipping past, written on the pages they had taught her to stain with blood and inky falsehoods.

     One day she shared one single such page, lined with a few of her disguised words with another girl she knew was trapped by shadows. The other girl's eyes screamed the tears that refused to fall. That day, both of them felt something that they had not felt in a long time-- relief from their aloneness. Because of the understanding that they shared some of the shadows had to leave. These were the shadows that only formed when one believed they were forever alone in their hopelessness. The other shadows grew angry with their hostages, afraid of being sent away too. They coiled around the girls' hearts tightly, hoping that by forcing them to just survive they would forget about each other and the bond they shared.

      Every day was struggle. Every morning that they awoke was both a blessing and a curse.
They reminded each other of their hope every day, whispering cleverly disguised words to heal each other’s constant loneliness. They began to fend off the darkness by wielding the words they refused to give up. Often times all they could do was survive, but they found that by surviving together the shadows weren't as dark, the days were not as hard and the loneliness wasn't as sharp as it was before.