for teens, by teens

Canvas Teen Literary Journal is published quarterly in print, ebook, web, video, and audio formats.


Eden Ariel

It is Sunday and I am
drinking coffee
in the green glass of afternoon

a frog trills
folk music spills like air
some distant guitarist’s fingers
slide over ribs of strings

it is Sunday and I am
a pool of sunlight
not remembering winter

for a moment the pit in my chest
puckers and closes.

I remember how the earth opened up
burst into blossom
rose from the dead.

I am not remembering how I dragged
the sharp tooth of a plastic fragment over my skin \
to see white lines rise up.

Our libido tells us to devour life.
I ate strawberries this morning
and kiwis green as the outside.

Death instincts say
we are speeding towards some
tunnel of autumn
lined with yellow lights.

My conscious mind sees my hands
the cracked nail polish there
sees the pink orchid, the tall yellow rose

the kiss of brown at the edges.

In my unconscious mind you are dancing
and you are smoking cigarettes
and the violet city around you is bursting into flame.

In my unconscious mind you kiss me.

You will never kiss me consciously
whiskey will always taint our lips.

Trees are growing and seeds are waiting
bushes grow fat with blackberries.
Somewhere it is snowing.

Which is the dream?

Is this green-glowed springtime
this whispered music
this pollen-heavy projection of solitude
truth or delusion?

Are you
and your blood
and the hard wail of winter
the marrow or the skin?

Icicles blossom from buildings
orchids and roses freeze on their stems.

Things are growing in the earth
but when are they not growing?

Eden Ariel is a 17-year-old writer from New York. She attends Byram Hills High School. Her work has been published in Polyphony H.S., the Claremont Review, and Navigating the Maze, and she has also been nationally recognized by the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. In addition to writing, she loves music and singing. She is inspired by nature and the changing seasons, and can frequently be found staring at the sky or wandering around in the woods. You can find more of her work at

© Canvas Literary Journal 2016
Writers & Books
Rochester, NY