As We Are Now


A kid who sits behind me in my remedial math class says he will be a
Cardiothoracic surgeon; no one has the heart to tell him.
It doesn't have to make sense, it just has to be real.

If you give someone a tiger lily, you're saying,
"I dare you to love me."
Don't mention how deadly this lily is to anything who might eat it.
If you give someone to a tiger lily, you're saying,
"I dare you to love me even though I am toxic to your system."

I noticed a few years back that there are certain parts
Of my backyard that never feel the scorch of the sun.
The only thing these square inches of concrete know is that they
Have always been a safe haven for burning feet in the summertime.
The only thing I know is that I will never have friends like I had
During the summer of 2010.
It doesn't have to make sense.

We all like to wonder how many people it takes
To change a lightbulb,
But no one's ever asked how many lightbulbs it takes
To change people.
How many people need to gather before it's considered a crowd?
How many crowds need to gather before it's considered a revolution?
How many revolutions do we need to have before
It has to make sense, before it doesn't have to be real?
It doesn't have to be real. It doesn't have to be real.
It just has to mean something.

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This Poems Story

Lauren Waites is a sophomore at Cerritos High School in Cerritos, California. This poem was inspired by everyone she has ever met, who has a story to tell, and everyone who has ever asked for hers in return. She would like to dedicate this to her mother, Catherine Waites, for buying her first journal, and her eighth grade english teacher, Mrs. Richard, who allowed her to fall in love with hand cramps and stanzas and the utter relief of finally finishing a poem. Finally, this is for everyone who has ever believed in her dream; this truly is just the beginning.