a poem by Krystal

Haters are like the crows nagging
Or pecking at you when you’re walking down the street.

Haters are like a hay stack,
Looking for the needle in the middle.

Haters are like the army,
Only one is trying to come and send colors to your spouse’s house.

Haters are like a bee in the
Summer trying to get that one flower.

In the middle of a whole playfield with a lot of people,
And you’re selected out of all the people getting called out.
Your hater is that one.


Dedicated to my people

By: Anthony

I dedicate my Zine to all those people who have put me down

And used me,

Stencil by Anthony

Stencil by Anthony

I dedicate my Zine to all the people who have shown me right and stood by my side

This is for those people who are hidden in the darkness

Of my shadows. This is for all the people I may never meet

This is for my city of poverty

This is dedicated to all the young men and women

that may never have the chance to bloom.




a poem by Michael

Good starts once you’re born.
You’re born a pure spirit.
You could be born of two murderers
In prison.
But you’re born purer than the sky,
The water and the ground.

Good is people smiling.
I see people smiling
And I see the light, the joy in their life
And then I feel joy in mine,
Even if it’s just a stranger on a street,
It reminds that there’s still happiness.

Family can be good—street family or blood.
The people you look to when you’re at your worst
To bring you to the best.

Talking. When someone is having a bad day
And you come up to them and let them
Express themselves.
After letting people talk, even when they’re
Balling out tears, the pure joy and relief they feel
Makes the corruption in my soul go down
And I feel more pure and less corrupted and less evil.

Laughter. Making people laugh
I try my hardest.
When someone starts laughing, I try
As hard as I can to make them keep laughing
Even if it makes me feel stupid.

I think everyone’s connected.
The more negativity there is,
The darker the world looks.
The more positive the world is,
The more light you’ll see.
Less death and more life.
Laughter can be the midpoint between.
It’s like a candle whose flame is black and white,
Stuck in the middle. Half and half.
A joke may be positive or negative
And it can fold.
And I try to keep it balanced.

Good is keeping things balanced
And darkness is just giving up.

Shameless Addiction

A poem by Carrie

I breathed it in
They threw it out
A passive-aggressive
Scream and shout
They didn’t approve
So I suck it while alone
I did it in my car
I did it when I was the only one home
I did it at my mom’s
And sometimes my sister joined in
She loved the way it made her feel
Even though she was only ten
But my dad was very adamant
Sometimes he caught me in the act
He said it would never get me anywhere
So I should get back on the right track
But now I’m on my own
And I do it all the time
It makes me see a whole new world
It truly alters my mind
It’s a genuine addiction
But I don’t feel bad when I use it
What the hell is so wrong
About singing and playing music?

Want to read more from Carrie? Check out her first completed Zine, Sweet Tea and Sunshine, Coffee and Rain!


a poem by Lanoir

Watercolors by the author

Watercolors by the author

I want attention
I want to dance, act, perform, paint, model.
I want to sing.
I want to fight. I want today. I want tonight.
I want to do what I want to do, when I want to do, where and how I want to without a “no” from him, her, them, or  you.
What you gonna do when I come out and make my move, my groove.
I walk into the room and you feelin the smoothness.
I want to dance like I’ve never danced before
Hip-hop, salsa, meringue, samba, cha-cha, ballroom, tango, ballet.
Sweating, I want to be sweating.
Music so loud my ears ring.
Attend a class, a session with nothing but music blasting
Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, Sergio Mendes, Missy Elliot, Christina Aguilara, Madonna, Daft Punk, MGMT, Rihanna, and Azealia Banks
whatever genre of music you put on, it doesn’t matter to me!

Tea pane 2I want to be in a room with mirrors on every wall and even on the ceilings!
I want to be worked, jerked, and twerked into shape.
That’s all I want to do is dance, because it gets everything out… these frustrations of mine being around people with energy and liveliness in a drought.
The concentration of perfecting a move, it just excites me.
I want be physically and mentally put to the test because at this moment I am ready for the next challenge.
Because I have an open mind and heart.
I’ve got the time.
Put your cards on the table because I am willing and able to sing like I’ve never singed before.
Open up my voice, my soul  like a door.
I’m ready to step to the greats.
Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Billie Holiday
Eartha Kitt, Amy Winehouse, Mariah Carey, and Beyonce.
Put me on to it.
I know I can do it.
Because I believe it, the thought of me being a star has already penetrated my brain since I was a little chick.
I can sing like R&B, Rock, Country, Pop, and The Blues, so what it do?
I can make it do what it do.
I can do it.
Can’t you see?
Give me a chance, please someone, just give me a chance!

Tea pane 3Give me!
I’ll make sure to make my voice heard and listened to.
With an inspiring message that will run light years into the future.
Time for this sweat to be smelled.
This art that swims through me like a mermaid in the sea…to be felt.
I am 19 years old and soon to be 20, time to make connects and get respect.
Everything is so fresh and new to me, so many opportunities.
And the Isis Goddess helping me stand on my two feet.

Time to stop just chilling, smoking weed, and watching t.v.
Tired of doing the same old things.
I’m ready to set, run, jump, and shoot off into clouds of dreams.
I’ve got the passion.
The twinkle in my eye.
The Talent.
I know what the world is ready for and it’s boiling within me.
I got it right here in my kettle  and I’m ready to serve the world this delicious tea.
I know what you need.
I don’t got the soda, the juice, or the sweets.
Just this tea.

Tea pane 4


A poem by Krystal

The place I call safe is anywhere from home. Growing up was a demented life and I put it in my mind that I wasn’t going to be a nobody.

I always thought home was jail.

I went to school early morning, from school was to home, and from home straight to my bedroom.

Bed equals Sleep and I knew my day had to start all over again the next day and the days that were next. I never really wanted to live how I lived but it ended up happening anyway.

I could smell the stink coming from downstairs and it was a tense smell. The smell was crack and I knew my life was just the beginning.

My G-ma’s house smelt like old lady but I loved her anyway. Night after night, I was wondering what my life was going to be like when I got older.

But I never knew I was going to make it to see my age 18. Well, I’m 18 now and happy but you never know what’s in store for you next.


As a child, the family was his tribe.
His older cousin showed him and his brother how to fish.
He was shown the colors of the earth,
and it helped him through the noise and clamor
of his half-sisters and the city.
He and his brother and mother and sister were a tribe.
He was taught to cook,
and introduced to the music that inspired his brother,
and it helped deal with the bright colors and materialistic shallowness of the American dream.
He and his friends were a tribe,
Not the ones in person, but the on-line ones
who knew only his soul,
The soul that would be connected to his love,
and it helped him deal with the absurdity
of those who had trouble moving on in the face-to-face world.
Now, he needs his tribe again,
In order to be safe from those who see savagery,
In the most noble of existences he’s known.


A poem by Michael

Evil starts with corruption of the
When someone murders, teases someone
Lies, or steals—anything you do that you think negative
Your soul gets corrupt.
Doing evil is like sitting in a black room for days
And all you see is a tiny light in the corner
And you see that tiny light getting dimmer and dimmer
Until that light is pure black.

I’ve seen evil in my life:
Someone you look up to hurts you
in a way you never thought would happen
And it corrupts you
In the process.
He hurt me and it made me very negative
Towards myself.

Peer pressure is evil. Someone begging you, repeatedly
Asking you to do something you don’t think
Should be done—stealing or doing a drug.
He tried to convince me to smoke cigarettes
And I didn’t want to.
He said “Smoke this or I won’t let you out of my apartment.
You can jump over the banister.”
So I jumped.
Years later, I started smoking.
Peer pressure stays around you even when you’re alone.
It doesn’t disappear. It’s something you think about
Even if you don’t notice.
It becomes something you start pressuring yourself to do,
Internally. Everyone does it.

Love is evil.
Backwards, love almost spells evil.
When you’re in a relationship for a long time
And blind to the fact that she’s maybe either cheating
Or doesn’t even love you.
I did whatever I could to make her happy
But it was like trying to pick the earth up
from another planet.
Lifting pounds and pounds
of weight you’ll never be able to lift.