A Students's Guide to First-Year Writing

  • Length: 2260 words (6.5 double-spaced pages)
  • Rating: Excellent
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document

A Students's Guide to First-Year Writing

Now, and at the Hour I was not with You

I. Laurie is crying again, “You are not with me,” she says.

“Wait, Rae, don’t move.” I watch the silver image of the Virgin Mary on a swaying chain around her neck as she snaps the shutter to trap me in black and white. Laurie is the photographer of our little society; Michael is the sculptor, Stacy and I are the painters, and George has had a thing for performance art lately. We’re smoking cigarettes in the moldy bowling alley. George says: “I’m bored of this- all of it. Everyday’s the same shit. We need to fucking do something before my skin rots off.” Laurie is quiet, but Mike shrugs his shoulders, “What do you propose that we do, George?” “I don’t know, rob a bank, be punk rock and spread some anarchy... man, I don’t know, just anything.” I look at Laurie. She’s quiet. I motion to the bathroom to take her from George’s little angst party. We stand together in the stall, so I kiss her and touch her hair and say, “You okay, sweetie?” “Do you want the truth?” she asks.

I nod and she replies, “No, Rae, I’m not okay. I’m really very, very not okay. I’m losing my shit over absolutely nothing... Rae, I just can’t do it anymore.” I’ve heard Laurie like this before; it makes my stomach go sharp and black because I want her to be okay. I need her to be okay. But she hurts so deep; her depressions come in torrents. Her tears stream the Chanel foundation off of her cheeks into puddles on her black dress, all in such slow motion. She brings a bottle from her bag, clicking and childproof, to her burgundy lips and then shares it with me. We return to the group with hydracodone breath, so that the rest of the day will be a senseless opiate dream.

You are not with me. You are not with me. None of you. You stand around and let words drool out of your lips. You speak of punk rock and of anarchy, but you don’t even care... about anything. You don’t even care. You can’t even see me crying. You say, "Laurie, you okay, sweetie?

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"A Students's Guide to First-Year Writing." 123HelpMe.com. 23 Jun 2018
Title Length Color Rating  
A Students's Guide to First-Year Writing Essay - A Students's Guide to First-Year Writing Now, and at the Hour I was not with You I. Laurie is crying again, “You are not with me,” she says. “Wait, Rae, don’t move.” I watch the silver image of the Virgin Mary on a swaying chain around her neck as she snaps the shutter to trap me in black and white. Laurie is the photographer of our little society; Michael is the sculptor, Stacy and I are the painters, and George has had a thing for performance art lately. We’re smoking cigarettes in the moldy bowling alley....   [tags: Personal Narrative Suicide Death] 2260 words
(6.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Our Own Words: A Students's Guide to First-Year Writing Essay - Our Own Words: A Students's Guide to First-Year Writing I was born in Bulgaria, the Land of Roses, a “Wonderland” amongst others in Eastern Europe. After living there for eight years under the influence of communism, my family and I were eager to depart and head for America - “ The Land of Opportunity.” The adjustments I had to make to my unknown surroundings in the United States were not easy or pleasant. My number one priority was to continue my education and, without hesitation, I was quickly enrolled in an English speaking elementary school....   [tags: Personal Narrative Writing] 1373 words
(3.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Student Survival Guide Essay - Student Survival Guide When starting a new course: The first resource I need to use is the course syllabus. The syllabus includes the course overview, and then the week by week assignments. Within in the weekly assignments are your materials needed for the week, and are usually in a word or pdf document. If you don't have the programs to read the downloads; you can download the programs to read the document's on you student web sight. My instructors contact information is also a valuable resource with in my course syllabus....   [tags: How To Guide] 1212 words
(3.5 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Student Survival Guide for Axia College Students Essay - Student Survival Guide This guide is to help future students embarking on an educational path at Axia College. It will explain and show all the many resources available through Axia College. To begin a distance learning educational course, you must first find the need and desire inside yourself for this program. Once you understand why you are here, it will be easier to succeed throughout the classes. Using Educational Resources Axia College offers many resources and tools that are user-friendly to help you succeed throughout your program....   [tags: college, higher learning, college education] 1269 words
(3.6 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Authentic Writing Essay - My well-worn sneakers paced the ground beneath them with a syncopated rhythm that communicated to the rest of the world, “I’m on a mission!” The black sole meets the dirt path with fervor as the leaves and dirt dissipate from behind me forging lines in the dirt like a red path from a navigation screen. I have always enjoyed running outdoors in Colorado. The cool breeze provides redemptive counsel for my stress, and my heart churns the thin air into my body—beat by rhythmic beat blood involuntarily pulsates through my veins....   [tags: Writing] 2012 words
(5.7 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Learning the Process of Writing in a First-Year Composition Course Essay - I entered my first-year college composition course believing I was equipped with the knowledge, skill, and ability to write an efficiently researched and well-organized essay. In high school, I learned how to create the traditional five-paragraph paper with its introduction of a thesis, explanation of that claim through three sections riddled with supporting quotes, and conclusion that restated the author’s substantiated statement. This was the prescribed formula I had learned and grown accustomed to using for book reports, compare-and-contrast papers, and research essays and, from my bestowment of high grades and praise, I’d never thought to question or deviate from its pattern....   [tags: college esssay composition]
:: 1 Works Cited
1613 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
How To Write Using the APA Writing Style Essay - The APA writing style is most commonly used to cite sources for psychology, education, and social sciences and is also the official writing style of the American Psychological Association. The General APA Organizational Guidelines are basic guidelines that explain how to write a research paper in the APA format. These guidelines ensure clear and consistent presentation of written material that differentiates from other writing styles because it concerns elements such as: Citations, punctuation, presentation of numbers, etc There are four major sections in an APA paper....   [tags: APA Writing Style]
:: 18 Works Cited
1600 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Technical Writing and Test Prep: An Examination of Technical Writing in The Real ACT Prep Guide - Developed in the 1950s as a response to an increased interest in post-secondary education due to the G.I. Bill, the American College Testing Program, known today as ACT, was a non- profit, tax-exempt organization which provided standardized testing services meant to “help students make better decisions about which colleges to attend and which programs to study, and provide information helpful to colleges both in the process of admitting students and in ensuring their success after enrollment” (“ACT.org”)....   [tags: College Preparation ]
:: 2 Works Cited
1603 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Students and Teachers Essay - Students and Teachers Teachers and their students. When a person hears these words they think of a classroom and usually nothing more. The classroom, though, is only part of a student and their teacher. One might question, do they talk to each other outside of class. Do the students even like their teacher. Do their feelings about their teacher interfere with their willingness to learn. In response to the last question…YES. In my study of Mrs. M and Mr. B’s second hour English 10 class I noticed that there is a direct connection between students feelings of their teacher and their opinion of class....   [tags: Education School Papers]
:: 1 Works Cited
2689 words
(7.7 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Personal Narrative: Teaching Students to Enjoy Writing Essay - Writing is something that always came relatively easy to me. I was not the best student in High School, though that was primarily due to my lack of effort and enthusiasm. I was certainly capable of doing the work, though baseball and Atari always seemed to come first. But with writing, I was most often able to produce the quality of work my parents expected of me in a short and painless amount of time. As I set such a scenario for you, two problems are clearly recognizable. The first lies in the lack of effort I put forth in my early schooling, and the second is that I recognized very early what my parents expectations of me were, though I failed to explore my own subdued expectations....   [tags: Free Essay Writer] 1065 words
(3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]

Related Searches

” You can’t even see me. I am not okay. I will not be okay until I am no longer here, in this place, with Lucifer on every treetop, spitting black venom on everything. I will never be okay and you don’t even care because you can’t even see me.

They’ve all gone home- Michael, Stacy and George. The night is screaming something about sleep in Laurie’s banana-bread kitchen. So, we go to her room, to her bed, and shut the door. In the darkness, I can hear her tears fall onto the pillow until her breathing becomes deep and slow. As she sleeps, I keep my eyes open with growing anxiety. She’s not okay... and something is very wrong. I whisper words out her black window, “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee, blessed...”

II. Segue: Laurie and the Mighty Abandon.

You are not with me. I am forsaken. I loved you all so much. I tried so hard, I was so beautiful, but you were not with me. I’m sorry. I don’t know, I just can’t. There’s never a bottom to the pit inside my chest; there’s never a drought in my tear-ducts. I just can’t. I’m sorry. I’ve taken off the Mary that has hung swaying around my neck. I have no faith in a god who would give me this- a god who would bring me here to this immaculate lacking. Why have you left me here? Why are you not with me? I’m sorry. I’ve fallen here, lying in the storm, being consumed by the mud of the earth.

III. Blood, not Black and White, and the Ivory Door Proclamation.

I recall this action to come most effectively in terms of a very old, very shaky silent film; absolutely silent but for the sound of flapping reels. The black and white picture has a flashing effect and produces unnatural movements. This is the way my vision of this scene plays in my head, over and over again.

The camera begins in the sky. The dark, Boca Raton, light polluted sky. And spins down to the trees, down to the house, down until we see a girl on the lawn, in a Donna Karan original slip dress; a silent image, but for the sound of flapping reels. She is at the garage door barefooted, with mascara streaming down her face. The picture is in throbbing black and white; her dark hair is sticking to her teary cheeks. We can see it all from this angle. From her bag she brings a tube of lipstick, still burgundy even in a black and white image. She smears words onto the fresh ivory garage door, “Nothing is with Me...” Her fingerprints are on the blank surface, but the camera is pulling back again.

The girl takes something metallic from her bag, something heavy... loaded. Her father had kept it locked since Vietnam; armor-piercing bullets are illegal. This is all so black and so white, the pulsation of a projected image in sync with a racing heart.

White night and black, she’s got lightly shut eyes, hands in violent tremors, and burgundy lips open, impatient. Even in such silence, we can hear her breath, “...blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy...” The camera is panning so far. We see her naked feet in the grass, but she’s becoming so small from where we are. She’s raising her weapon and breathing; she’s pointing it at her face. Everything becomes so tight; she’s clenched and contracted. And then it goes. We are shuddering and deaf, though we heard only flapping reels. The girl is now slow-motion violence, in black and white. She is falling back, slowly hovering. She is crumbling. Her black hair is moving through the night air in floating tendrils. Her body is relieved of its duty and the wet earth welcomes it home. The girl, so slowly, sinks into the dewy lawn.

With the camera inching closer we can see the bleeding. Up from her small head, to spread through the grass and the early morning. Blood, not black and white, not burgundy, but red. We can see it all from here— the house and the ivory door proclamation; we can see her, on the red lawn.

IV. Lilac Wine is Innocence and is Peace.

Live a little rumble now, A thimble girl all wet. The rain that pours a gunshot- Wound, quick like sand to set. For storms to pound a sidewalk In barren empty space. She has a trinity at her knees, Falling on her face. The shock of blood at Sunrise— Words,Burgundy on the Wall. Cleanse her now with Lilac wine— To her, us... all to all.

V. Don’t Let Me in on This. Friend... to Friend.

laurie is gone. a victim of the mighty abandon.
i knew something was wrong when i woke to the faintest scent of purple roses. Patrick’s been up all morning gasping for tears. Yellow tape is stretched around his lawn, he can see it from his window, “Caution." He is slipping his feet into black pants, slowing pulling on his blackest shirt so catatonically on this mourning morning. Out the door, to the car, passing his ivory garage door which once stood blank— now bleeding lipstick symbols. He’s headed right for me. Friend to friend. Patrick drives with thoughts few and foggy, he hasn’t prepared what he’ll say. I’m at the lazy piano still in my pajamas when he pulls into my driveway. Opening the heavy door reveals Patrick, dark with white eyes and a deep sickness in his face. It is then that the scent comes again, her purple roses, and my brain throws up the red alert, “Why are we not with her?” “Come in,” I say. We walk into the living room where he lays it on me like Atlas passing the burden, “Laurie... killed herself last night.” My body staggers under my skin, all is motionless in my brain, now frozen. And I reply, “Okay.” “She shot herself...” Patrick probably continues speaking, but that is all I can hear. It’s all breaking into nothing as I float him out the door and away. I hover to the piano but it sounds like chicken soup. I would lie on my soft bed but I’ve forgotten how to use the staircase. So I float. Tip-toeing on the tile and whispering a song, “...now, Holy M a r y, moth er now ofGod ,pr a y now f o r u s sinners, now... now...
now...” I have to vomit.

VI. A Voice... Laurie.

I’m so sorry, you were not with me. None of you. How could I live so alone? I stood on tainted grass in the rotting world and gave myself sleep, so finally. No pain can devour me here. But I am sorry. I am sorry if you hurt for this. Please just let me go. I’ll be angry if you start loving me now.

VII. The Northbound P608 to West Palm Beach.

jesus christ, you bleeding fucking rose, you know we always loved you I am on the little commuter train, preparing to man the floodgates. I’m headed to Stacy’s house. Everyone will be there: Stacy, Michael, George, and me. The whole society, minus one.
laurie, i’m all alone... on the rattling train by myself... since i was not with you in the moment you needed, you’ll never be with me again In this mud-land, exposed through dusty windows, I feel that I am coasting on liquid train tracks, approaching the speed of light. This is an umber-world where I can’t get my heart under control— it’s locked in one continuous beat. And as we come to Tamarind Avenue, I can see his dark, black Volvo ready to parade me off to the house where Stacy lives. Ready to parade our loss through the floodwater to come.

VII. The Big Bang Theory.

(1) Rae: I can feel mayhem as I walk through the door. It’s so silent in here. Like the electrons here are all in overdrive. I hold my breath through the hall, and I see
her on the patio. Stacy is blank. I open the door and sit at the table with her,
lighting a cigarette to compete with the ashtray-full she’s already had.
(2) Stacy (on the patio): Why is she here? Her silence pins my hands over my head and
her voice is like rusty metal. She can’t understand that I don’t care. Laurie wa s
my B es t Fr i e n d, and I l o v e d h e r s o m u ch... ...but...
I hate her for what she’s done, and she’s gone so that’s that. So, just let me have
this patio, I’ve got enough wine to make it through the night. I don’t even care,
I’ll just say it: “Rae, can you leave me the fuck alone, please?”
(3) George (in the bedroom): i can’t feel my hands. i can’t feel my hands or my arms or
my feet. why am i shaking? i’m dying. i can’t feel my hands. my eyes are
watering. i’m alone and i can’t feel my hands. i can see rae now, she’s here
now. i can’t speak. she’s sitting next to me on the bed, but i can’t feel my feet.
“rae... i think i’m dying.” i’m shaking. she’s still... she’s not shaking. she says,
“tell me why you think so.” “i can’t feel my hands or my feet... i can’t even move them... i...” she says, “relax...” she holds me around my shoulders, “breathe, i love you. i’m here. you’re okay. i promise.” if i’m okay, then why am i dying?
and now she’s got me crying, too.
(4) Rae: I can see Michael from here. He’s wrapped himself in a bed-sheet, lying under
the grand piano. He’s crying. He hit me when I crouched next to him, so I’ll
just stay here, on the couch, alone— with all of this white light, in the dark.
(5) Michael (under the black piano): e m p t i n e s s is m y
F o o t p r i n t... . .. .. . i am c u r l e d i n t h e
R e s o n a n c e of Fear.

IX. Segue: Past + Present = Future.

To sit Rich, Unwaver— The rain that You Gave her. Amidst which Was dying— A Cloud Drift un- Tying.

X. (go ye now in peace.)

Now. The smile of mine that Laurie bruised is nearly healed.
So. I am walking across fresh grass, clutching thick and thorny purple roses, until I see her name carved in a granite bas relief. She can sleep here, and I can find a way to let her go.

But I’m sure I look so small on this expanse of green, with the summer sun beating my hair. And I feel so small, standing on this much eternity. I am alone. And no one can see me now. And no one can hear me whispering, “...Mary... mother of God... ...pray for us sinners... Now... Now ...and at the hour of our death...

Return to 123HelpMe.com