underwater | poem

emerald isle

i wrote this poem last year in my english class, for an assignment about describing the culture of a specific area at the time of an important historical event. i chose chicago, 1919, during the race riots. it’s very different from the poetry that i usually write; those are typically about my own experiences, while this one is based on research & the life of eugene williams. even though it was a little bit out of my comfort zone, i enjoyed working on this because i think experimenting with different kinds of prose helps me grow as a writer.

so with the backstory out of the way, here’s the poem!

my mama said she feels like her head is being held underwater.
she’d just lost her job preparing italian beef sandwiches in a diner downtown.
the day she was fired, my mama slumped over the kitchen table
with a cloth dripping cold water pressed against her flushed cheek,
which sported a shameful red handprint.
a white customer had spotted her dark, plastic-gloved hands in the kitchen,
slicing rolls, tucking in meat, folding sandwiches shut.
she told me that the white woman who had pitched a fit
had been sipping a milkshake through plum-painted lips.
that pursed pout spoke venomous words into the ear of mama’s boss,
who told mama that white folks felt the hair stand up on the back of their necks
whenever people like us were in their spaces.
he kicked her out of the shop with a slap to the face,
telling her to search for a job in the black part of chicago.

wise men believe that nothing is black and white.
there is only gray, an area where both sides can be right.
the gray tells us that mama deserved to keep her job because she’s a hard worker,
but it also says that the white woman’s discomfort was valid.
in my mind, the world is divided into black and white.
white cops, white stockyards, white neighborhoods.
black prisoners, black schools, black slums.

my mama shooed me out of the house one day in july.
she was looking for a new job sewing glitzy flapper dresses in a sweltering factory.
my friend eugene and i spent the afternoon together,
cooling off in the cerulean water of lake michigan.
we buried our callused feet in the warm sand of the beach.
eugene and i joined some sweet girls from the ghetto, splashing in the water on the make.
summer was perfect that day, in the heat with our new dolls, not a care in the world.
i figured my mama had gotten the job and everything would be back to normal.
when the sun was hanging low in the sky, eugene and i
kissed our girls on the cheek and set off to our black neighborhood.

we took a shortcut through the beach on 29th street, wading through the surf.
the people lounging on the sand were made paler
by the zinc oxide streaked on their bare, outstretched limbs.
eugene and i trudged along the shore, our feet covered by gentle waves.
he hummed the song i’m forever blowing bubbles to himself.
a white man yelled at us in a throaty voice that rattled through my skull like thunder.
dark dots showered down from the sky — gnats? polluted rain?
they struck my naked chest, shaking arms, horrified face.
dull pain rose up in my skin wherever they hit.
stones sailed from the heavens and pelted eugene and i as we began to run.
howling white boys raced along beside us, pebbles flying from their hands.
“get out,” they hollered, “this is our beach!”

i saw the shadow before it happened: dark and eager, searching for its target;
a lion chasing its prey across the savanna.
the rock, as big as my fist, smashed into the back of eugene’s head.
he stumbled, his feet slipping in the shifting sand.
then he pitched over and landed facedown in the surf with a thud that stopped my heart.
the splash from his fall sprayed the back of my legs as i fled.
over my shoulder, i urged eugene to pick himself up and get the hell out of there.
eugene stayed in the water, still as a statue, letting the waves lap up over him.
the hunting white boys halted their pursuit to gather around his quiet body,
crowing and and circling like buzzards.
“he’ll drown,” i screamed at them, scratchily,
as though i was speaking through a mouthful of sand.
they hurled stones and slurs whenever i tried to get close.
eventually, my wailing drew the attention of a scowling white cop.
the hunters scattered; the man whose voice shook the earth approached.
calmly, as though the world was not collapsing in on itself,
he explained how two “suspicious-looking boys” had violated the segregation of the beaches.
“the bigger, more criminal one,” he told the officer, while gesturing at eugene’s limp form,
“fainted in the water for unknown reasons.”
i crouched in the lake beside my best friend, praying for him to lift his head.
salty tears rolled off my chin and puddled in the dip of his back.
anger seethed under my skin, burning and all-consuming.

if there is only gray, the policeman would have arrested the white boys
for murdering eugene as he strolled innocently along a beach.
if there is only gray, someone would have listened when i accused the thunderous man
of shouting at us and setting the crime into motion.
those girls from the ghetto, who kissed eugene and me in the lake,
had watched us go, their expressions dizzy and light, then shocked and drained.
they saw the commotion and the rocks in the air.
if there is only gray, folks would have believed those honey-voiced girls
when they took our side and called the white killers sick.

when i got home, mama was at the scuffed kitchen table again.
she must’ve gotten the job: a new striped dress hung on the nail in the wall.
worn and faded, it was the uniform workers wore in the clothing factory.
with her tired mouth, she asked how my day had been, and how was eugene?
“mama,” i told her, “eugene feels like his head is being held underwater, too.”

xo apollo

what my first year of public school was like

my last day of school was on friday and i could not be more excited for summer break!

my schooling has been all over the place the last few years. i was homeschooled up until the 2017-2018 school year, when i started going to public school as a part-time student (i took two classes every other day). that was sort of my “transition year,” i suppose, because this time around i was a regular student.

i know a lot of my readers are homeschooled, so i thought it might be interesting for you guys to get an ex-homeschooler’s perspective on public school.

how many classes do you take and what are they?

eight classes, and those are percussion I, algebra, world geography, english, earth science adv., p.e., spanish II, and biology. i was in theatre at the beginning of the year, but i switched out of that because the other kids were just really bizarre.

my bio teacher likes my art :)

what is your favorite class?

biology! earth/physical science has never really made much sense to me, but for some reason bio just clicks. all the different equations, complex cycles, and concepts come to me extraordinarily easily. i passed my final exam with an advanced score. i love it so much that i signed up for bio II honors next year, so wish me luck with that!

what subject do you hate the most and why?

gym, mostly because my teacher and i don’t get along very well — and also because, well, it’s gym class. my teacher swears a lot, told us that the football players are the smartest kids in the school, and also seems to get annoyed at me a lot for no reason. apparently he threatened to fail me because i had been missing his class a lot, but i only wasn’t there because i was sick and then had a bunch of orthodontist/dentist/doctor appointments in a row.

who is your favorite teacher and why?

my percussion teacher! he’s my favorite because he’s so chill, has helped me through a rough situation, let’s us play mario kart during class, and also because i’ve spent the most time around him. he’s the band director, so i spent last august through november having him yell things at my section during rehearsal. :)

are you in any clubs?

just the drama club, but we don’t really do that much. i also went to a minority student union meeting one time, but it’s not technically a club. we were planning a handprint mural that day.

front ensemble/pit practicing salutes for senior night

which clique/group are you in?

i’m with the band kids. i play in pep band, take a percussion class, almost exclusively hang out with other band kids, etc. and yes, i do make music puns and tell stories about band camp.

i’ve also spent a lot of time with theatre kids and soccer players, but i’m not as close with them.

describe what you wear to school/your uniform.

i normally wear jeans with one of my friend’s flannels open over a plain shirt. it’s really comfortable and fits the grunge aesthetic, which is one of my personal favorites.

during soccer season, my team would dress up whenever we had a home game, so on those days i would typically wear a black button up dress.

have you ever ditched school?

i don’t think so? i mean, sure, there are days when my mom lets me stay home for no reason, but i don’t think that really counts as ditching.

none of these memes will make sense to any of you, but trust me, my school loves them with a passion.

what is the craziest thing that has happened at school?

there was a fire in the kitchen in march! my mom drove my brother and i to school that morning and there were a bunch of firetrucks and students milling around outside or sitting in their cars. no one really knew what to do, since all the fire drills we’d done involved us being inside the building when the fire started. so after awhile, administration herded everyone into the small gym, which branches off from the rest of the building and is far enough away from the fire that it was safe to be in there.

so that was an interesting day, and right after the fire, all these instagram accounts with memes about our principal started popping up. the three main topics for memes are the fire, our principal’s war against juuls, and the phone jails.

what do you like the most about your school?

i like the library, the principal’s youtube channel (he has twenty-eight followers), the rick astley photo on the auditorium ceiling, and, of course, marching band and soccer.

what do you hate the most about your school?

people (some of which i’ve never even met) were spreading sexual rumors about me all year. also, sophomore boys at my school are the worst.

what’s your best advice on surviving high school?

pick the classes that you want. don’t base your schedule around what classes your friends are taking. if parents/guardians are pushing you to take classes that you don’t think you can handle, then don’t take them. and if you sign up for a class and later decide that it’s really not for you, transfer out of it if you can. there’s no reason to force yourself to suffer through a class simply because someone else thinks you should take it.

also, don’t take things too seriously; it’s ok to eat lunch by yourself; and please please please allow yourself to take a day or two off if you feel yourself getting too stressed and overwhelmed.

do you participate in any after school activities?

i participated in a lot of activities this year — one for each season, in fact. i did marching band in the fall (i was part of front ensemble), stage crew for musical in the winter, and played soccer in the spring. that meant that for most of the year, i was staying after school until five or six in the evening for practices. all those activities + getting used to public school + homework = a very, very tired girl.

however, i did really enjoy participating in after school activities (some more than others, but still)! the only reason i’m not switching back to being homeschooled next year is because i want to have the opportunity to do those types of extracurricular activities.

read my post about the musical here!

read about this year’s soccer season here!

i haven’t posted anything specifically about marching band, but here’s a cool photo from one of our competitions.

also, there was an award ceremony at the end of the year, and i won two awards! i thought for sure that i was going to get one for science, because that’s the subject that i’m best at, but algebra and spanish II works, too.

what’s funny to me is that i received an award for excellence in mathematics, but i almost failed my algebra exam the day before the ceremony.

i feel like that sums up my first year at public school pretty well. transitioning from homeschool to high school has been really rough, and i don’t think i’ll ever truly get the hang of it, but it has gotten somewhat easier.

i’ve been keeping track of things in my head that are unique to public school, things that seem mundane and probably aren’t noticed by those who have been in the school system their whole life (things like gum and what they post on social media and speech patterns). it’s really interesting to have a foot in both camps, and while i am not enjoying my time in high school, i’m grateful for the insight.

xo apollo

2019 soccer season

soccer season ended a few weeks ago and i already miss it so much. i have too much energy because i don’t have practice everyday after school anymore. anyway, all my friends and family are sick of me talking about soccer all the time, so i thought i’d get it all out of my system by discussing the entire season here.

first off, here are the basics: i played on JV for most of the season, my jersey was #1, and i played midfield and striker.

this was my first time playing for a serious team. in the past, i’d always played on rec leagues with my best friend. we practiced once a week and had a game every saturday. this season was a huge change for me, because my school’s sports teams practice everyday and have two or three games a week. it was exhausting, but i loved every minute of it.

soccer has always been a big part of my life. i started playing when i was six years old, on a team with my brother. my parents were the coaches. i played two seasons a year. eventually, my brother quit soccer for karate, and i joined a different league with my best friend. i was invited to play for their travel team, which i was so excited about, but my family couldn’t afford it. all of that led up to this season. :)

| my progress |

i’ve been playing soccer for years, and my favorite position is midfield. i wasn’t the one who made the goals, i was the one who made assists. but this year, i found myself playing striker, too (and stopper, at one point). i was hesitant about it at first, but then i scored the first goal of the season for either girls team, and after that i absolutely loved it. so i played striker for a few games, had some really good shots on goal, and then my coach switched me back to center mid, where i stayed for the rest of the season. i guess our defense was struggling, and she thought i could help them out.

my speed improved so much! my mom has always told me that i’m one of the fastest players on the field, but she’s my mom, so i tend to not believe her about things like that. but then some of the varsity players were talking about how fast and aggressive i am, which just made me feel so proud of myself for how hard i’d worked during practice. my team did this fitness test called the yo-yo a lot, which is like the pacer but so much worse. i always tried so hard when we ran the yo-yo, even though i hated it, and my speed and endurance definitely improved because of it.

also, i gained around seven pounds of muscle! i’ve been underweight my whole life, but now i feel like i look less sickly. most of the muscle gain was in my legs, obviously, so now most of my shorts don’t fit because they’re too tight around the thighs. my calves and abs are also more defined now. and i know a lot of people consider weight gain to be a bad thing, but i’m actually really happy about this. i worked hard all season and i’m glad that there’s physical proof of it.

this is me playing with an undiagnosed concussion :)

| injuries |

about halfway through the season, i injured both of my legs. the insides of my thighs hurt so much, even when i was just sitting still. i eventually went to the school’s athletic trainer, who told me i had pulled both of them. i had to sit out a few practices, but i was so eager to play that i got back on the field before i was healed. my legs kept hurting for a good five weeks, which was probably because i refused to rest. but i’m finally feeling better, so i guess it all worked out.

then right at the end of the season, i got a more serious injury. during a varsity game against our rival school, i got knocked over twice and hit the back of my head on the ground both times. the other players got fouled, the varsity coach didn’t pull me out of the game, and we kept going. i didn’t have a headache or anything, and i wasn’t dizzy, so i assumed i was fine. then at one point, my coach started yelling at me from the sidelines, but i couldn’t understand what he was saying. i mean, i knew he was speaking to me, but i couldn’t figure out the words. that kept happening for the rest of the game, whenever my teammates were giving me instructions. i guess that’s when i realized something was wrong.

i went to see the athletic trainer the next day, and she gave me the concussion test . . . which i did not pass. (one part of it was counting backwards from one hundred by sevens, so there wasn’t really any hope of me passing). i had to sit out about a week’s worth of practices and games, which was unbelievably frustrating.

the worst part was that the varsity coach had recently started letting me play with his team. i’d been practicing with varsity, and getting a good fifty minutes of play time during games. i had worked so, so hard all season to get pulled up, so getting injured when i did felt like everything i’d worked for had been ripped away from me.

the athletic trainer cleared me just in time for JV’s last game. i was so happy to be back with my team and to be able to finish out the season with everyone.

i wasn’t the only player to get injured this year, either. three other JV girls got concussions, one JV player quit after spraining her ankle, and five varsity players were out for most of the season for various injuries.

“good game” . . . lol sure

| varsity |

near the end of the season, so many of the varsity girls were injured that their team didn’t have any subs at all. if they couldn’t find subs, they were going to start forfeiting games, so their coach started pulling girls from JV. the first time he did that, he was deciding between me and one of our captains. both teams thought it was going to be me, which just made it more disappointing when he picked the other girl. but i must say that i played really well during the JV game that night, and the varsity coach must have noticed, because he pulled me up for the next game and started having me practice with varsity, too.

i only ended up playing three games with varsity, but i know i would have had more if i hadn’t gotten a concussion.

warming up

| playoffs |

i got pulled up to varsity again for playoffs. that was absolutely the most intense game i had ever seen. we were tied 3-3 at the end of the game, so we played ten minutes of overtime, then ten more minutes of sudden death. no one had scored after those extra twenty minutes, so we went to penalty kicks. the whole team lined up on the field, holding hands as our designated kickers took the five penalty kicks. in the end, the other team scored one more time then we did, so they won the whole thing. we were all crying and hugging and it was so emotional because that was the seniors’ very last game, and the varsity coach’s, too.

team huddle

| team events |

i think JV was more interested in having fun than playing a good game, so we organized a bunch of events throughout the season. there was a secret santa-type thing, a team dinner, a fun practice where we just played games the whole time, and a picnic at a park, among other things.

i didn’t participate in the events at the beginning of the season because i didn’t feel like i belonged the there. i was at a new school this year, so i wasn’t friends with anybody. i had played soccer with a few of the girls when i was in elementary school, and i have classes with a few of them, but that was the extent of our interaction.

i remember one of my marching band friends coming to pre-season conditioning once, as well as tryouts, but the coaches told her she couldn’t play because they didn’t have her physical. now, i know this is a lie because we had to turn in physicals for band all the way back in autumn. so i don’t really understand what happened.

anyway, not having her there made me uncomfortable and i guess i pulled back into my shell. i didn’t talk much during practice or bus rides until about halfway through the season, when i started making friends with my teammates. we were sitting in the stands during an away game, watching varsity play, and three girls invited me to sit with them. it was early spring and absolutely freezing, so they offered to share their blanket with me. we talked while the game went on and hit it off, which made me feel so much more welcome on the team. i wonder if they realized that their kindness at that one game made the entire season a much better experience for me. it really is the small things.

i did end up getting into some drama with one of my teammates, which made our friendship a little weird for a week or two. basically, her girlfriend at the time was absolutely insane and extremely jealous. she found out that my friend had helped me with homework during our pre-practice study hall and kind of lost her mind. she would say petty things to me in class and also posted things about me on social media. she painted the situation to make it look like i had asked her girlfriend for homework help multiple times just to spend more time with her, even though i didn’t need the assistance at all because i got good grades in that class. in reality, my friend had offered to help on one occasion, and a few of my other teammates were helping, too.

another time she went to one of our games and saw my friend and i warming up together. apparently she went off on her girlfriend later about how she didn’t want her to warm up with me anymore.

she keeps telling people that i’m trying to steal her girl. the whole thing is so unnecessarily rude and petty. we were just being friends and she tried so hard to make me look like a homewrecker. it’s a good thing she never found out about us holding hands during the penalty kicks at playoffs, or else i think she would have actually tried to beat me up.

zoom zoom

| next season |

so i am a little bit worried about next season. the varsity coach is stepping down, which makes me wonder if i’ll actually get varsity next year like i think i should. that probably sounds stuck-up, but i figured getting pulled up this year would mean actually being on varsity next time. a few of the varsity girls told me that they loved watching me play during JV games, and didn’t understand why i hadn’t been put on varsity in the first place.

but if varsity is getting a new coach, they might not let me play on their team because they won’t know that i did a good job this season. maybe it’s dumb to worry about this now, since there’s a whole year before next season, but still.

i’m so excited to keep playing soccer for my school and hopefully in college. i am not used to being exceptional at something that i love.

do you play spring sports? how did your season go?

xo apollo

blossoms + life, i guess (4)

hey, loves!

it’s been awhile since i just talked with you all about how my life is going. in general, i feel things quickly and vividly, so my update posts are usually messy and full of rants. but i’m actually kind of mellow right now, so i thought i would take advantage of this mostly calm state of mind and share what’s going on in my life right now. :)

– currently, my life is all about soccer. i have practice everyday after school until 5:30 and at least two games a week. i’m working on another post all about soccer, but i have some news that i’m just elated about and have to share right now!

so five of varsity’s players are currently injured and unable to play. they needed more subs for their last game, so the coach decided to pull up some JV players, and he picked me and one of our captains!! i am so thrilled that he considers me one of the best players. during the varsity game i played in, i somehow managed to get a break away and a shot on goal. it’s just huge news and makes me really excited for future soccer seasons.

also, i’m playing another varsity game tomorrow (unless it’s rained out). wish me luck! hoping i don’t get hurt.

– i talked about this in my last life post, too, but people just keep flirting with me. a guy in my bio class has been flirting with me for months and told me that on a scale of 1-10, he likes me at an 8 or a 9; a guy i met last year comes to my home games and sits with me in the stands while varsity plays; and this other boy who my mother described as a “cute string bean” comes to games sometimes, too, and always cheers for me. it’s very flattering but so annoying. i can’t wear a dress to school without getting a bunch of texts about how cute i look. i usually just say “thanks, it has pockets” and don’t address the flirtatious part of the conversation. but that doesn’t stop them from complaining later about how they can’t read me and how i’m sending mixed signals or whatever.

– so school right now is going pretty well for me. i have straight A’s in all my classes, but i missed a bunch of classes/work last week because i got sick, so that might change. plus, i have a bunch of SOLs coming up, which i’m nervous about because i’ve only taken one in my life and they’re still a pretty foreign concept.

i recently had to sign up for next year’s classes, and the ones i’m most excited about are bio II honors (anatomy + physiology), bio technology, and horticulture. i really like science, if you can’t tell. i had tried to sign up for a fire & rescue course at a nearby technical school, too, but apparently i’m not old enough, so i’ll have to wait until the 2020-2021 school year to take that. :/

– i am really on top of my goal of earning 10 ahg badges this year (read more about it in my new year’s resolutions post)! my troop’s spring award ceremony is in mid may, and i am for sure getting eight badges: living in the usa, cake decorating, physical fitness, special delivery (stamp collecting), kitchen scientist, living & working in space, home care & repair and young meteorologist. there are also about seven other badges that aren’t 100% completed, but should be by the time the ceremony rolls around.

redbud tree + chipped nails + soccer sweatshirt

– i’ve been thinking a lot about my stars & stripes project lately, which is ahg’s version of an eagle scout project. i feel like i’m running out of time to pull it together and get my award. the problem is that i have absolutely no idea what i want to do for my project. it has to benefit the community in some way and take at least 100 hours to complete. i was googling project ideas, and the only one i found that sounded ok was installing a sensory room in an elementary room for children with autism. so that’s an idea, but it still doesn’t seem like exactly the right fit for me. i’m a little bit stressed about it, so any huge project suggestions would be appreciated.

xo apollo

do you hear the people sing? | my les misérables experience


hey, guys!

at the end of february, my school put on a production of the classic musical les misérables. that’s a pretty challenging choice for a bunch of high schoolers, but i think we pulled it off pretty well.

i spent most of my time last month working on this show, so i thought i’d write about what that experience was like! i hope you enjoy this peek into a high school theatre department. :)

originally, i had auditioned to be part of ensemble. i sang left behind from spring awakening and it actually went a lot better than i had expected it to. but i ended up not getting cast (the directors made the cast super small this year, which doesn’t make a lot of sense to me, but oh well), so i decided to work backstage instead. my main job was doing props with one other girl, but i also helped my mom with fixing costumes when i got the chance, because props is kind of boring.

my proudest moment was when i got to carry a potted plant on stage at the beginning of in my life/a heart full of love. that was my one second in the spotlight and i only messed up half of the time!

the theatre tech class made hundreds of these for the show

personally, i didn’t enjoy backstage very much. our crew was entirely girls, and they were all a big group of friends. i only knew two of them from marching band, although i wasn’t very close with them anyway. so i felt out of the loop and a little excluded from crew stuff during the musical. like, they got a professional picture of the backstage girls that i wasn’t in, they bought pizzas during rehearsal without telling me, etc.

crew was seriously unappreciated. we were going over bows at one rehearsal, and when all of the actors had gotten their turn, someone asked our theatre director when crew was supposed to bow. she replied that we weren’t going to because she’d never been in a show where backstage bowed. everyone in crew was outraged, and it made some of the cast upset, too. i understand that in a professional show, crew probably wouldn’t get a bow, but this was just a high school production. crew had been at all the long rehearsals, we’d put in just as much effort as everyone else, and we felt like we deserved one moment of recognition. eventually, our director agreed to let us bow, but i think most of us were still bitter about it for the rest of the shows.

but i’m going to be honest: crew has more fun. while the actors were running back and forth between the wings, fussing with mics and costume changes, we got headsets and sang backstage and danced little jigs during master of the house and the wedding scene.

part of crew @ the barricade. look at our gorgeous, hand-painted background!

since i wasn’t close with any of the crew, i spent a lot of time reading by the props table or distracting my actor friends. actually, i ended up making one friend miss a few of her scenes because we were hanging out in a dressing room listening to bob marley. :)

i also talked with my friends in the pit a lot before shows and during intermission. my favorite section leader was playing oboe, and the marching band’s tenor player was doing percussion. i would sit by the stage and chat with them while charging strips of glow in the dark tape with my phone. the bits of tape were all over the stage, and they let crew know where to put big set pieces.

my brother was also in les mis! he played the innkeeper, monsieur thénardier, and he was absolutely incredible. i was so so proud of him. he was an excellent drunkard and he really commanded the stage during his solos. i also really enjoyed seeing madame thénardier get in his face and push him around during master of the house. anyway, it was a huge leap for him to get such an important role after being in ensemble during last year’s show (the sound of music), and since he did such an amazing job, i have hope that he’ll get the lead in our next one.

speaking of my brother, he got a very sweet candygram from this girl from a neighboring school. they talked for awhile after the show, kept in touch, and then they went on a “casual” date yesterday! she helped direct her school’s production of the little mermaid, my brother was one of the leads in les mis . . . theatre couple?? yes please.

i feel like i’ve explained candygrams before, but in case anyone doesn’t know, they’re these little paper cutouts with candy and handwritten notes on them. so in the lobby, musical parents were selling roses and candygrams for the cast and crew. the cast and directors used those fancy plastic dividers that you hang on doors as mailboxes for their candygrams — crew and pit shared an itty bitty bucket the size of a water glass. i got a few notes from my mom, my friend hannah (who played a lovely lady), and also one from my brother’s ex’s mom?

b&w view of the barricade

for the most part, the cast was phenomenal, but a few choices made me rather upset. first of all, a friend auditioned with me, and he got in but i didn’t. and that’s not really the part that makes me mad. it’s the fact that his audition was literally the worst one. he sang something from phantom, but he’s a terrible singer, didn’t know the words, and stood still while he performed. he’d never done theatre before and didn’t even want to be in the musical. also, his acting was terrible and he spoke his lines instead of singing them. it just makes me so angry that despite being so undeserving of a role, he got in simply because he’s a boy and the directors wanted more soldiers. there were so many better choices at the auditions: people who were passionate and talented and devoted. but they picked him instead because of his gender. it wasn’t fair at all, and i know it’s been months since auditions, but i’m still upset about it.

i don’t know what musical we’re doing next year, but i’ve heard that the directors are considering newsies or beauty and the beast. between those two, i’m hoping for newsies, because i love that show very much. also, i don’t think anyone at my school wants to do a disney musical.

even though i wasn’t cast in les mis, i’m planning on auditioning again next year, because i do love theatre and want to be in a few more shows before i graduate. but if i don’t get a role, i’m not going to help backstage again. it just wasn’t my thing. i didn’t have any friends in crew, i had to go to long rehearsals where crew wasn’t needed, and it was too much work without any appreciation from the directors. without us, the show would have fallen apart, and the theatre director didn’t seem to be aware of that.

to sum things up: i’m so proud of my friends for putting on a stunning rendition of les misérables. the whole experience was emotionally draining and made me lose some of my passion for theatre. but listening to the abc men belt do you hear the people sing? and our insanely talented marius perform empty chairs at empty tables planted this burning, hopeful, defiant feeling in my chest that has not gone away.

red, i feel my soul on fire! black, my world when she’s not there! (abc café/red and black)

xo apollo

monarchs + life, i guess (3)

i haven’t posted in over a month and a bunch of stuff has happened since then. so today i’m going to be ranting about my life!

also, i have some pictures of monarch butterflies and mexican sunflowers to share. :)

– this is my first year going to public school, and it’s been really stressful so far. i’ve already missed a lot of school because some days i’ll wake up and just be way too overwhelmed to go to class. i think the hardest part is being around people for so long, especially since up until last week, i was staying at school until around 6:30 everyday because of marching band. but the season’s over now so i’ll have free time again.

but, uh, if anyone has tips for dealing with public school, they would be greatly appreciated.

– it’s only the third month of school and i know of seven or eight people who like/liked me. one asked me to homecoming in august, and two (maybe three) others were planning on doing the same, but didn’t once i said i was going with my best friend kelsie. two are 8th graders in the band who will probably lose feelings for me now that we won’t see each other very often, one is my best friend at school, and the other is a girl who’s friends with my brother. i’m flattered that people like me so much, but it’s kind of a lot to deal with. and i feel really bad about myself because i know i’ve hurt some of them and might screw up our friendships. romance is so messy and i’m not any good at it.


– marching band was the only thing i liked about school, and our final competition was last saturday. the season started off pretty well and then gradually went downhill. the most disappointing part was when we got second place percussion in our class, and then found out that the announcer had made a mistake and we’d actually gotten fourth. (to put it in perspective, there were five bands in our class and one of them didn’t show up.)

i only have classes with one of my band friends, and i’m going to miss everyone a lot. we still have a banquet, a few playoff games, and pep band before the season is completely over, but it’s not the same as practicing outside in the rain before the sun’s risen, spending all day with my friends, and then sleeping in a pile on the bus on the way back home. i can’t wait until next year when i get to join drumline. :)

– musical auditions happened recently. my school’s doing les misérables this year. i sang left behind from spring awakening, and i was so insanely nervous. my brother told me that my face was twitching. everyone said that if you audition for a supporting role and don’t get it, then you’re automatically placed in ensemble, which is what i wanted anyway. but i guess they did something different this time and only a dozen people got ensemble, and i’m not one of them. but my friend who only auditioned because of me got in. i’m totally not mad though. :)

idk, no one is very happy with the cast list, not even the people who got good roles. the only person who’s really ok with it is my brother, who got cast as the innkeeper. i’m honestly really disappointed because the musical was one of the reasons i decided to go to public school, and now i don’t get to be in it. i’ll probably help backstage but it’s really not the same.

– my friend n told me years ago that he was going to write a song for me, and he finally did. i listened to it during lunch yesterday and i just sat there and cried. it’s called i guess i lied and it’s my favorite song right now. it’s about me and our history together and it kind of means the world to me. he’s so talented and i’m really proud of him. :’)

this was a messy post but i really needed to rant. life is too much to handle sometimes.

i’m thinking of posting more poetry soon, if you guys are cool with that. i was very caffeinated last night and ended up staying awake until 3:30. during that time, i cleaned my whole room, did two projects for school, and wrote a couple of poems that i’m actually rather proud of. so just a heads up that you’ll be seeing more poetry soon even though the last post i made was about my poetry, too.

have a good day, everyone. i’m so glad that autumn is here.

xo apollo