A Second Home

By Arielle Li

My most vivid recollections of China are filled with fond memories and blissful experiences. The smell of smoke and frying foods wafts through the air, and at night the streets are a disorienting mess of flashing billboards and street lights.

Paradise Drive

By Kayla Brethauer

Turquoise vinyl siding
a green darker than any Carolina marsh.
Twenty steps up to the front door.
Fifteen more to the bedrooms.
Will the luggage make it to its destination?

The Allure of Home

By Nitya Dave

Salty wind pushes at the falling tide.
Blue serenity veils the town as a 
melancholy buzz flows through the idle docks.

A boat pushes through the harbor:
It drifts along, 
lazily down.


By Tori Gardner

overland park
milky way

am i supposed to call this home?
i live here
but it isn’t home.


By Hannah Warren

constantly muttering to yourself
a constant hum in the back of your head.
carrying conversations with the walls around you
this is normal mom,
leave me alone mom,
I want to eat in my room tonight mom,
I can’t talk right now mom.
buzz-buzz, buzz-buzz

Growing Old

By Anne Goebel

Born into the place I despise.
Growing in the green,
not seeing what could be.
Suffocating siblings,
pets galore,
always wanting more.


By Marilyn Stickler

A little spot in the heartland,
A little spot in your heart.
Where families are created,
And legacies carry on.
Where meals are around a table,
And the front of a fridge is your trophy case.
Where names are recycled,
And recipes stay secret.


By Taj’Zhere Dillard

Warm evenings -
a slight breeze with the scent of smoked ham
and cornbread for dinner.
BROWN BODIES come out when the streetlights do
dancing and singing to Motown.
Turning bodies into wine
too sweet to taste.


By Kayla Doubrava

I’ve never understood why people are so disgusted
by silverfish.
I like the little guys.
They way they scurry around from place to place,
they’ve always got somewhere to be,
perhaps because they don’t like where they are.
I know the feeling.

Sometimes I Cry

By JDC Resident

Sometimes when I sit in my room I think of home
I think of all the things I miss and how I’m alone
In all the loneliness I get consumed in sadness and fear
Then I feel the pain as I shed a tear
Sometimes when I’m in my room and I’m entrapped in silence

what is a home...

By Connor Mitts

Is it the one place you can go?
the one place you can trust
those who are there
no matter where you are
or where you are going?

Is a home where you are always found
and lost to lose yourself in old memories?

To Build a Home

By Amani Raheel

My ma says

She pushed my stroller

around the bumpy streets of

Queens, Jamaica, Long Island,

even Manhattan,

Through rain and snow, all



Finding no help from the

passengers, all ignoring her

silent plea

Endless Calm

By Claire Burrow

Winter seems like an endless calm.

When the cold surrounds us,

and the darkness makes the streets disappear,

the world’s turning seems to slow down.

You can see footprints start and footprints


leading somewhere,

going nowhere.


By Emily Steinmetz

Walking step by step to a place unknown,

people look past me like I’m a monster,

part of the disowned.

My heart is lost and I’m brought to a shadow of blue,

cheeks stained with tears,

a feeling that is far from new.

By the time the night is over,

Never Been

By Raneem Issawi

Although I have never been,

I can smell the condensed aroma

of fresh bread in the bakery,

occupying its place in the noses of bypassers.


Although I have never been,

I can distinguish between the flavor

of black and green olives,

A Different Room

By Arron Weber

Moving boxes carefully across the street,

Looking both ways

before pushing a small cart of toys across the street.

Today we were moving,

But it was not a long drive to our new house,

It was a simple walk across the street.


Warm Enclosures

By Ashley McLaughlin

I hastily picked my feet up out of the snow to uncover a pair of warm brown boots that had been hidden under layers of white fluff just moments ago. The cold wind pierces my bare cheeks as I charge forward, breathing heavily to reveal a cloud of warm carbon dioxide.


By Saadia Siddiqua

home can be anywhere with a song
a constant melody
an extravagant sound

warmth without sun
cold without ice
feel anyway you’d like


By Carly Hassenstab

Police tape lines the yard
I walk past
Baby blue house in cookie-cutter neighborhood
I look down and it says welcome
I quickly step in and close the door
so the camera flashes don’t glimpse inside
A table set for seven with pink orchids in the middle

Kansas City

By Taj’Zhere Dillard

This here is real.
There are no stories
about happy homes and whole hearts
where we come from.
No fancy cars.
We got no big houses but big dreams.
This is crack fiends at midnight,
babies crying, sleeping on wooden floors.

Where You've Been

By Anonymous

What do you do when the place you call home
Is one that you no longer recognize; when you
Forget that place is no mere function of space,
But also a function of time; and the
Crystalline memories you can still see,

Falling Asleep to the Brown Line L

By Catherine Strayhall

Chicago, my beauty;
Chicago, my heart. 
Chicago, the deep breath of 
Every morning I start.

Chicago, my summer;
Chicago, my light.
Chicago, the way her buildings
Shine in the night.


By Ashley Honey

Hair up
Tarp down
My mother uses her strength to cradle
Our liquid gold
Douses the pan with potential energy
And snaps the blade to its wand
The brush crackles and crinkles
She slaps more gold on the canvas

childhood home

By Emily Martin

she is four years old
toddling around
on wooden floors
like a spinning top,
too short to reach the cabinets or
see above the sink,
clambering atop
to reach her
pink plastic glasses

Where I’m From

By Ahna Chang

I am from the nail polish in my room,
From holographic glitter and high heels.
I am from the toys on the ground
(rainbow, soft, Sasha never picks them up.)
I am from cacti pricking my fingers,
From shopping and thanksgiving,
From Sasha to Caleb.