Wednesday, December 6th, 2017


Valerie Ruberto - "Soak", "Mirrors" and "Permanence"



A new tide of light has soaked through my flesh today.
Believe this euphoria is coming from a place
Of my own soul drenching your deeply hidden one
(The one I have exclusive access to;
Most times I think you regret giving me the key).
But these delusions won’t assault me any longer.

Though I can’t fully convince myself that these feelings don’t
Originate from the house of our star-crossed love,
They come from a place of holiness,
(A place that I can’t touch).
But you are not God,
And I will not make that mistake again.


You need not convince me he is something extraordinary;
No need to explain why you need him in your life.
I’ve walked that path once or twice, but find my own insecurities turn me about now.
He is like a mirror.
I look at him and see everything I hate about myself
Amplified in each dried crack of his palm,
Each curl of his finger,
Each slightly off centered smile,
But he is like a mirror.
I look at him and see everything I love about myself|
In each boastful chuckle,
Each whisper from his eyes,
Each cliffhanger word he utters.
Oh those war torn hands;
A texture I’ll carry with me for as long as it desires to stay.
I’ve never been more in love with loathing myself.



When you and I were conceived, we were made for and against each other.
We were brought into each other’s sphere by God,
Into each other’s souls by our own negligence, an inability to fight the current,
And we were taken away by grandeur and God again.
Taken away, but never separated.
Because here on the blackest spot of my heart rests your carvings, and
Nobody will touch it the way you’ve managed to in the short amount of years
I let you play around in there.
It’s a spot no one but you can claim and a home you will never fully abandon
No matter how much you may plead at night to make it so.
Your hands were meant to be on my heart and
The dirt you left was meant to last forever.


Valerie Ruberto is an undergraduate student at Tufts University. She has had three poems published in Yellow Chair Review and one poem published in Halcyon Days. To read more of her work, go to her website,


Alejandro Perez - "Backpack Of Reveries"


Let me tell of my backpack of reveries.

It was a heavy backpack,
weighing me down,
causing my back to arch,
worsening my scoliosis. 

I left it near a cathedral in Rome,
with no tag, 
no address, 
no phone number.
I hoped to never see it again,
leave it behind forever.

But today I wonder what happened to it.
Is it still there, on that street
where a homeless man with an amputated foot
sat next to a sign saying "Help," jiggling a cup,
praying for some coins to fall?
That street with an abandoned dog
on the verge of death,
panting heavily from dehydration,
ribs protruding?
That street that smelled of rotten bananas
and urine and beer?

If you walk by that street, take a moment and stop.
My backpack might still be there.

I think it contains some ideas for poems and stories
that I never even started.

Take whatever you want. 
Take the forever-calm rivers I imagined
and the never-fading rainbows
that I painted in my mind.

And if you find the time,
please, write those poems
and stories that I never did.
Please bring my abandoned
reveries to life.


Alejandro Perez is a Creative Writing major at Emory University. Being part American and part Guatemalan, he was raised in a bilingual/bicultural home.  He is caught between two cultures, just as he is caught between his desires of living in the real world and in the world of his imagination.