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Untitled Poems

In by Chris on June 29, 2010 at 9:29 pm

River get on outta here
Go on, shoo
River stop walking into my room
No, go
Go on River

Search for me
In the school of hard-boiled eggs
In my room of thirsty plants
For my singular expedition
Has turned off the path
And might be lost

I’m tenacious!
I never stop!
Proof?
How about my facial hair
Huh?

I got to the next level
In Pokemon
In the 12k
In BMW models
In life!
Percolate, wait, elevate
It’s great, don’t contemplate
Things might complicate
If you think too hard about your fate
So everyone grab your Gameboys!
Next level!

Steganography

In by Michael on June 29, 2010 at 7:45 pm

Hi Professor,

Don’t know if you remember me, but I took a computer science class with you in the fall.

For the summer I’m interning at this tech company; it’s going well. It hit the news today that one of our (former) employees is a Russian spy and was arrested yesterday. Not making this up.

But it gets better, and here’s why I’m emailing you. The newspaper article says “They embedded coded texts in ordinary-looking images posted on the Internet,” which I’m almost positive is what you had us do for the steganography assignment you gave us in the fall.

The Wiggle

In by Michael on June 29, 2010 at 12:26 am

In the city of hills, you’ve gotta be smart on your bike if you want to arrive at your destination less than exhausted and dripping with sweat.

From this urban struggle versus the hills comes the infamy of the Wiggle, the flattest path you can take from Market Street to Golden Gate Park. You start going west until it looks less steep to turn and head north, until it looks less steep to turn and head west until it…

I’ve said too much; either you already bike the Wiggle, or you’ve gotta go feel the burn of not knowing it.

Leaving Paris

In by Lara on June 27, 2010 at 5:01 pm

After a hectic move-out, in which I left the Fondation Des Etats Unis at 8:00am but due to traffic and a fussy, rich old woman from Virginia, my shuttle didn’t get me to the airport until 10:15am. The flight was at 11:05 am.

So after jumping the entire security line and passport check, I am not successfully seated on the plane on my way back to the United States for the first time after being abroad for six months.

How do I feel at this moment in time? I suppose I feel profoundly sad, but completely satisfied at the same time. I suppose much like a writer after completing a book he or she has been writing for a period of time. Sad that it’s over, but proud of the journey.

As I filled out the customs declaration form, I felt a tinge of pride as I listed “all countries visited prior to this US arrival.” My travels spilled over the two lines provided, and as I wrote down each one, I had one of those cliché-flashback-slideshow montages you see in films when the character is reflecting over his life or love or whatever. I remembered and felt each and every trip in a matter of milliseconds.

And of course there was Paris. Paris in winter with my crazy host grandmother and a freezing climated I hadn’t felt since leaving Canada when I was seven-years-old. But it was full of exploring with friends, awkwardness as I stumbled in social situations in French, the creamiest, richest, most flavorful cheeses and wines, pastries so beautiful you want to appreciate them for a second before digging in (but only a second), and of course self-discovery and fun. I took a side-trip to Strasbourg and stayed with my friend Emma’s godparents’ family. We ate tarte flambée and visited the modern museum of art. Then another trip to Berlin to visit Ole, celebrate Emma’s birthday, and learn a tad bit of German (ich will essen die menschen). Then the end of the quarter came upon us so fast and without much sun, and it was time to go on our long-awaited spring break trip.

Spain and Morocco with an ideal traveling group – Mark, Harley, Andre, Michael, Emma, Ana, Lucia, and Wyatt. In Madrid, we met up with Michael, who had planned to study abroad there for Spring quarter. There, we encountered a melodramatic, hostile hostel woman who shushed us for whispering in our rooms. We visited the major art museums, had tapas, and Harley, Mark, and Andre just had to go to Taco Bell (even though it was an hour out of their way). Then we met up with Emma in Barcelona. Barcelona brought on sun, an accidental venture into a grunge-striptease club, and lots of good food. And then Morocco where we stayed in Riad hostels and met new friends, experienced the bustle of the medina in Marrakech, camped in the desert with camels and berbers, and visited the cute coastal town of Essaouira and giant industrial city Casablanca.

And suddenly, it was Spring quarter! New home, new Stanford group, and in a way, new Paris. Spring brought on…not nicer weather, but less brutal weather. Nevertheless, we did picnics, spoke more French (contests were involved), and took lots of trips: Avignon, Stockholm, Amsterdam, and Brussels. Drinking, clubbing, adventuring, all of the above were part of our day to day lives…as students? As young adults in Paris? As Americans in Paris?

And now I’m here on this plane. The seemed to go by just as fast as reading the above.

Kitchen

In by Lara on June 27, 2010 at 4:36 pm

I’m back in my kitchen. It feels like home. The spatula dotted with green Christmas trees and red stars feels right in my hand, and as I stir, everything seems to come easy like I never lost that muscle memory. I walk over to the oven with my cake batter. I hope I haven’t lost my touch. My dog is sitting in front of the oven, sleeping, and as I nudge him to move a little, he looks up at me as if to say, “Really? It’s kind of late to be cooking and I just want to sleep, goddamnit.”

Over And Away She Goes

In by Chris on June 27, 2010 at 3:39 pm

Over and away she goes
Falling head over toes over nose
Giving up hope that anybody might know
The slow Cadillac lights
Fading out into the night
No sight in black shadings
So no more waiting, she goes
Hurricanes could approach
Her doormat of standing is rolled
Ready and full, her flat feet on toes
Towards nothing she knows, she goes
Greeted by headwinds
The din when sight is dim
But a light in her mind
Skims into the expanse
The first slight steps of a dance
The doorjamb is past
At long last, avast, she goes
Over, away, gone

No One Can See Me

In by Chris on June 27, 2010 at 3:33 pm

I think that the driver sees me, so I step down into the street. Halfway across the crosswalk, I notice he isn’t slowing. Split seconds. I wave at him, then try to run. The car is small, hits me in the knee. I fold into the air, hang, and shatter on the pavement.
Now I find myself outside, and I can see the driver cursing his car for making that funny thudding noise again. I see many things; the pedestrians still waiting for the light chat as if nothing had happened, as if not even my crunched remains were real.

Beyond The Window Frames

In by Chris on June 27, 2010 at 3:24 pm

What wonders await beyond the window frames?
Yesterday the first day I looked out and saw
The streets full of flashes of cars
The strange slowness of park pathways
One high-rise, two church steeples
A city scene unchanging, I thought
And I imagined where I might go to find the next scene
Angles full of meaning

But as I sit still and my nervousness fades into the blue dusk
The window frames relax into the crosswalks beyond
And each changing light is more than the last

Nights wait impatiently
To waft in from beyond the windowpanes
To whisper of secrets

The Poet’s Ecstasy

In by Chris on June 27, 2010 at 11:51 am

And the trees they stood so strong!
And the mountains beyond!
The jagged mountains they stood so powerful.

The landscape swept me up and held me –
Oh how sweet and soft its arms;
And the warmth of the sunset –
Oh sweet warmth of reds and oranges!

Within this sky I stood,
Within the beauty
And within myself.
Oh great beauty of myself.

Oh evergreens your arms,
Like the embrace of titans,
Where my spirit soars out
Into the infinite sublimity!

Oh my love!
Spread into the atmosphere!
Sunset!
Mountaintop!
Lakes!
Horizon!
Oh the power of my existence!
Ohhh!
Ohhhhhhh!
OHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!

The Man Who Tried To See At Night

In by Chris on June 27, 2010 at 11:35 am

“For attempting to make daylight at night, you are guilty. Your punishment: to be lashed to the sun for twenty-seven days and nights, to follow it in its revolutions.”
The prisoner with downcast eyes looked up to where a square of light seared through the single courthouse window.
The judge himself heaved thick ropes over the sun and pulled the prisoner up through the atmosphere to serve his fate.
His downcast eyes saw the world those twenty-seven days of luster. By the end of his punishment, he could see dark, underground corners of landscapes he had never dreamed could exist.