Allison arrived at the local coffee shop for her morning tea. Her duchshund, Peppy, trotted beside her. His ears stood alert as he waited for his morning treat. The coffee shop was also an independant tea shop. There were black teas, fruit teas, herbal teas, white teas, green teas, and all kinds of delicious tea blends.
When Allison asked the barista for a mango green tea, Trisha sighed. “Sorry, Allison. We’ve had to cut back on teas we serve. We only serve three unique kinds each day. Too much competition with David’s Tea.”
“Okay, what should I try?”
“How about the pineapple, squash, and blueberry fruit tea.”
“Not a fan of that mix, Trisha.”
“How about chocolate and marshmallow with asparagus?”
Allison closed her eyes for a moment. “Any Irish Breakfast tea with a twist of lemon? Or green tea with papaya?”
Trisha shook her head. “No, our tea selections are three exclusive flavors each day.”
Allison rubbed her eyes. “I’ll have a medium latte.”
“You don’t drink lattes,”
“Today I do.”
Trisha bent to give Peppy his treat. While Allison sat down, reading the paper and sipping her latte.
Then she felt as if she was going to throw up, spitting a mouthful of latte into her napkin.
Even the lattes had become exclusive. This one tasted like dirt.
” Nurado’s sonnets have no rhyme scheme, are meter-free, and are 14 lines, with a volta when you go from the two quatrain into the the concluding tercets. This is consistent with an Italian (or Petrarchan sonnet). ”
Here he sells his wares, the sidewalk his shop,
He’s weary of unlookers, keeping his clay jar’s burning incense.
I stand nearby, asking myself, “For what reason,
Do these fires burn? What wares has he purloined today?”
And stones gathered against the burnt sienna fence,
Mark that, this is his place, where he works and lives.
Hocks his wares, keeps the fire’s in the jars stoked,
Tiny stoves remain lit from dawn until midnight.
His goods move quick, I’m quite surprised,
To me they’re nothing much, yet, I buy a wood carving.
With a crumpled bill and pocket coins, freely given.
My fingers slide over dips and ridges, measure his small carving,
Such intricate, minute detail; but never have I found —
Why the clay fires forever burn, incense floating to the heavens.
Below Joshua the city spanned the azure horizon. He wished it felt like home here, that the kids at school didn’t make fun of him. He couldn’t help that he didn’t speak English well. He’d lived outside of Beijing almost his entire thirteen years.
Even though his English was improving, the kids in his classes still teased him, mimicked his Asian accent. Joshua didn’t understand why they made fun of him, specifically. There were many kids of diverse ethnicities in his classes. The difference was they’d been born here, or had picked up English as toddlers.
When some of the bigger boys punched and pushed him around one day at school, Joshua ran home immediately. There were tears running down his cheeks and he was embarrassed to be crying. He wasn’t surprised when his legs took him to his favorite place in the city. Joshua had found it one day wandering the streets and deserted buildings close to where he lived.
As he presently stood on the corner of the brightly spray painted building, he swore to never cry again. No matter how much the other kids teased him, no matter how badly they bruised him; Joshua would show them he was stronger.
Kelly Clarkson – “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)