Creative writing gives us the opportunity to turn our innermost thoughts and emotions into a timeless art piece worth sharing. Read below for heartwarming stories to put you in the spirit of the season.


“If you don’t see the book you want on the shelf, write it.” ~ Beverly Cleary


beach rocks.jpg

Photo by: Jackson Corzato

 

When I’m in Grade 12

By: Samantha Riga

Since I’m a grade 9 student, I have no experience of graduating high school whatsoever. That being said, I have thought about it. I’ve wondered what the last day of school would be like, when I finally close my locker for the last time.

I’ve imagined it to be like a movie; time stops. I’d look down the hallways that my friends and I used to roam. Then, I’d see the classrooms; they’d be empty, yet full at the same time; full of memories, epiphanies, and hour-long naps. I’d pass the bathrooms, the water fountains, and turn corners, looking through each window. No one is around, but my eyes fill the blankness with past memories.

I’d remember my first day of grade nine, how I was so confident that every day would consist of me being shoved into a locker. Walking down the stairs, I’d re-count the numerous times I had either tripped or fallen down them (my current estimate is five times per year). I’d stop in the matrix for the last time, and remember how my friends and I would obsess over the fries. We didn’t even like them sometimes, but we just had to have them Every. Single. Day.

If I have time, I’ll probably sit there for a while, just staring.

I’ll probably think about my life; what I’ve done, and what I’m about to do. I wonder if I’ll know what I want to do by then. Maybe I’ll decide to take a gap year. Maybe I’ll have already started a business by chance! I’ll think of all the people I’ve met along the way; the ones who left, and the ones who stayed, and how they’ve all shaped me one way or another into this probably still weird, over-achieving procrastinator, who really needs to stop binging YouTube and just take a nap.

I’ll take my final look around the school. Maybe I’ll be emotional. I probably will be if others are too. After all, this was my life. I’d have spent almost every day for four years here at this school. It might sink in at that very moment that a lot is going to change. Maybe I’ll be ready, maybe I’ll need some time. Knowing me, I’ll probably just take a deep breath and carry on. But, who knows.

Either that or I’ll just empty my locker and run out the doors as fast as I can.


Read Below for Content from Previous Issues

 

daisies

Photo by: Jackson Corzato

 

The Easter Miracle

By: Samantha Riga

My favourite time of year has always been Easter. I loved running down to the chicken coup and picking up fresh eggs to decorate. Mother would be in the house, making dyes and stencils that we would use when we got back, and we would eat chocolates afterwards by the pond. Easter at home would always be my most memorable and cherished tradition, but one particular year stands out from the rest. I think that year is the reason I must love spring so much, and all things revolving around Easter. It all started with my sister Jamie, and her perfectly white egg.

I noticed how boring her egg was when we got back to the house, and that she had only picked one. “You could’ve picked any other egg, but you chose the most boring one?” I asked. It really was quite ugly. As white as it was, something seemed off about the egg. I noticed how my other sisters including myself had baskets full of eggs, but Jamie just sat at the table, cradling her sole little egg, looking very content with her choice. “I don’t know, I wanted to get other eggs, but this one almost called me in a way. I felt like I didn’t need any others” Jamie got up, picking up her dyes and stencils she’d use. Confused with my peculiar sister, I rolled my eyes and followed her to the counter. Mother had laid out different crayons, dyes, and paints; anything that would make the eggs stand out. My little sisters grabbed as much as they could, as did I. Jamie, on the other hand, only picked up some black ink, a pen, and the yellow dye.

We spent the next hour colouring and decorating to our hearts’ content. As I finished up, I peeked over at Jamie’s egg. While the rest of ours were colourful with patterns of flowers and pretty designs, Jamie had only drawn a single cross over top a golden background. It was the plainest egg I’d ever seen.

“Jamie,” I started, “your egg doesn’t pop! Easter is all about colours and Easter egg hunting and chocolate and presents and having a good time! This egg is not having a good time.”

“No Sis, Easter is about new life and being humble. I drew the cross because if Jesus didn’t die on the cross, we wouldn’t even have a celebration today.”

I stared at my sister. I never understood why she took bible stories so seriously. The last thing I remember from that day was going to bed and thinking about how weird Jamie could be sometimes. Then again, I should have realized that what seemed to be the strangest of messages, sometimes had to be heard the most.

I remember closing my eyes for a second before seeing a wild blue light coming from the kitchen. It consumed my room, making me curious and anxious as to where the light was coming from. I got out of bed and walked to the kitchen.

The kitchen was glowing. My sisters were all up too, staring at the light. “Where’s Jamie?” said Amelia, my youngest sister, looking concerned and also entranced. My sister Julia pointed at the source of the light, and we saw Jamie.

She was sitting beside the light source: her egg! I was confused, and kind of scared. I grabbed onto my sisters’ hands and brought them to sit with Jamie by the egg. I noticed the light had been shining through two small cracks that had formed around the drawn-on cross. Jamie had the same content look on her face. I looked at her, and she smiled at me before putting her arm around me, “watch what happens next”.

The kitchen became engulfed in a now golden light, it was almost blinding. Suddenly, an image began to form above the egg; a dove. Flying around the kitchen, it positioned itself in a certain spot and began to produce pictures, each telling a story of a man who was sentenced to death and who carried his own cross. As the dove moved around the kitchen, the man in the images grew weaker and weaker. He suddenly dropped for the third time and was put on his cross and nailed to it. They lifted it up and let him hang before his friends and family. I held onto my sisters tight, until the last image. Lightning surrounded it and the dove began to fade away, without warning, there was a crash and the kitchen became pitch black. I remember Amelia yelling “JESUS WAKE UP!” before closing my eyes.

When I woke up, it was morning and I was in my bed. I got up and ran back to the kitchen, where all my sisters already were. “Jamie, is your egg cracked?” I asked, the girls all looked at each other and back at me. “You had the dream too?” asked Julia. I nodded. We were all scared and anxious. All of us, except Jamie. She looked like she was waiting for something– something to happen. She kept staring at her egg, which had no cracks on it at all.

Sometimes the stories you hear seem so redundant to life. Almost like a made-up fairy tale or myth to keep society in line. I believed that for the longest time, and didn’t realize how everything happens for a reason. My sister opened my eyes that year, especially when that day around lunch time, my mother called us back into the kitchen. She and Jamie were there, staring at Jamie’s egg, which was now completely cracked apart. When my sister turned around, she held a pure white baby chick. I stood there in disbelief, but also in excitement. My mother called it an Easter miracle.

So now, as the years continue, I remember to draw a cross on all of the eggs I decorate and to feel content with what I have. I will still always enjoy the chocolate and colours of Easter, but I now understand how important it is to be humble and embrace what I have. That is something I’ll cherish forever.


Easter Cookies

By: Danielle Tucci

     Every year on Palm Sunday, Mum and I bake her famous Easter cookies, and enjoy the sweet smell that fills the entire house. We make them in all shapes and sizes; flowers, eggs, bunnies, butterflies and little duckies, decorating them with all the beautiful colours of spring!

This year, my little brother Thomas helped us. However, I was very upset since Thomas didn’t know how to decorate the cookies like I did. Later that night when I was in bed, Mum came to tuck me and Thomas in. She said goodnight, and explained to me the importance of the Easter cookies. She told me that it doesn’t matter if Thomas decorates them differently than I do, what matters is that we decorated them together as a family.

She went on to explain that Easter is not just about the cookies; it’s about the death and resurrection of Jesus. He died and rose so that one day we can all go to heaven, and that this is what we are truly celebrating as we decorate these sweet treats.

Even now, many years later, every time I think about mum’s delicious Easter cookies I think of all that she said to little 6 year old me. Every Easter, I will always remember my mother’s lesson, taught to me that one Palm Sunday many years ago.


flowers-red-roses-vintage

 

My Favourite Love Story

By: Samantha Riga

     Some time ago, there was a beautiful young girl. She was intelligent, funny, and as an only child, she was loved unconditionally by her parents, who wanted only the best for their daughter. Her life was full of luxuries, and she was given the greatest of everything. It was no surprise when she found herself a suiter who wanted the best for her just as much as her parents. He could afford anything the girl desired, which intrigued not only her, but her parents as well. If it weren’t for one thing, the pair could have been a perfect match.

Then there was the carpenter, who had known the girl for some time. He was not rich; he had been homeschooled all his life, couldn’t afford a quarter of what the suiter could, but he knew they belonged together. He wanted the best for her as well; he wanted to begin a life with her, start a family, not worry about money and luxuries, but just be in love. The fact was that the girl was more interested in the carpenter as well, but she knew the right choice was to be with someone of her class who would make her parents proud; she knew her happiness and love came in second. This, however, didn’t cancel out any love the two had for each other, but the distance between the two began to grow.

As time went on, the carpenter knew that he needed to act fast. The young girl had gotten engaged to her suiter. He knew time was running out; if he didn’t do anything, he would lose the girl. He may not have had money, or be able to compete with a high-class suiter, but he had a way with words. He was able to speak his heart, writing poems and songs that sang with pure emotion. So, to make sure he could do everything he could before it was too late, he poured his heart out into a song, even having his friends help him to serenade the girl.

This is just the beginning of their chapter-filled story. It wasn’t always easy; they faced many ups and downs throughout. Together, they raised four children, spent seven years apart during the war, faced the struggle of moving to Canada separately as they couldn’t get their visas at the same time, but survived it all.

Eighty years later, my family still remembers their love story. It may sound like a fairy tale, but it too holds a very important message: it’s not always about the chocolates, flowers, and money. It’s about unconditional love, and facing the good times -and the bad times- together. Valentine’s Day is the celebration of love. So maybe instead of chocolates and flowers, do something you know your loved one will appreciate in the years to come. You never know, your great grandchildren might learn something from it decades later.



 

trees j

Photo By: Jackson Corzato

 

The Way Things Used to Be

By: Samantha Riga

     My family has been led to believe I’m nothing but a Christmas Grinch; a mere character who cannot stand the thought of Christmas cheer for all his life. As if I am conspiring to completely dismiss Christmas in its entirety, which I feel is the exact opposite of what I try to do.

Just yesterday, my wife sat me down and told me to brace myself for the upcoming celebrations. I admit I allowed my inner child out as I crossed my arms and grunted when she mentioned our son offered to host Christmas this year. She added that it would be nice considering her and I are not as young as we used to be some odd years ago. Now, this may be true. But my opposition of my son hosting this year is because things are a little different there.

I remember when I was a young boy, the day before Christmas Eve, Mother would make me go out to my friends and neighbours and personally hand them their Christmas presents. These usually consisted of her freshly baked gingerbread cookies and a hand-written letter, expressing love to every one of them. My older sister would wrap them in the same red and green checkered wrapping paper and a bow. Mother and my sister had a gift for gift-giving, and I took pride in hearing the children in my class thank my family for the gracious gifts. Mother had a special place in her heart for Christmas. It was also that one time of the year where Father would stop working out on the fields and come in to help decorate. He’d chase my brothers and I around with a mask, pretending to be the evil spirit of Christmas that chases after naughty children. My sister would practise singing Christmas carols while playing piano as she was in the school choir. I still remember her voice clearly as if she had just sung to me.

On December 24th, my mother would put us all in perfectly tailored suits and dresses she made herself for Midnight Mass. We’d thank God for everything we had, and everything we loved. Even during years when money may have been a problem, we were always admired for our beautiful outfits that complimented one another. Our Christmas dinners were just as loved. Everyone in the house were responsible for decorating as mother went out and invited family, friends, and those she knew might not have a meal, into our home. Everyone was engaged in the festivities somehow, my mother made sure of it.

As I recalled my memories to my wife, she stood there smiling. Her understanding helped me to me ease up about the new hosting arrangements. “But dear,” she pressed, “what makes you so hesitant to wanting to go to Matthew’s? They just renovated the house, and I hear they’re hiring a caterer!” “That’s exactly why!” I exclaimed. “Since when was Christmas about showing off or advertising who has what? Why did we have to watch the kids while they were out shopping on Black Friday? It’s completely against my morals.”

I admit, I was acting a bit childish again. This time of year was just too precious to turn into a commercialized event. Then it hit me; I knew exactly what I’d do to hopefully turn things around. I told my wife not to bother with the presents we’d gotten our grandkids. I dug around in a little cookie box with Mother’s recipes and flipped to her famous Gingerbread. I tried replicating the old cookie boxes as best as I could and spent all of December 21st writing out personal letters to my grandchildren. The bows weren’t perfect like my sister’s, but that wasn’t what mattered.

On Christmas day, I called over all my grandchildren. I plucked their little gadgets out of their hands one by one, setting them down on a white and gold covered table. In turn, I placed their now empty hands with a red and green checkered box, the bow holding a personalized letter in place. Them reading their letters and subtly smiling gave me the same sense of pride, and I knew this was what I was meant to do.



trees

Photo by: Jackson Corzato

 

The Halloween Warning

 By: Samantha Riga

October 31st, a time for tricking or treating

Extravagant costumes and excessive candy-eating

But while you search for the next decorated door,

Know that for some, it’s not candy they look for.

 

This is the day where the spirits come out

The day they aren’t just lurking or wandering about

Yes today, keep your head up and try to tread lightly

Looking in dark corners causes risk for what you might see

 

It’s an eerie themed night, the tricksters come out to play

Tonight, watch for more than just balloon-marked sewage drains

Take this poem as a warning, when you say your next “trick or treat!”

The possibilities are endless as to who you might meet.




thunder spirit

By: Natasha D’Alessandro

proud smiles radiate

depicting content and awe

whilst pride arises

 

seasonal transmogrification

By: Natasha D’Alessandro

proud smiles radiate

depicting content and awe

whilst pride arises

 

 

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