What Remains Unspoken Writing Contest

Lauren Alison
Lauren Alison
Star Rating
Reviewer's Rating
May 14, 2024

Johnson County Library is pleased to announce that Lauren Alison has won our writing contest on the theme What Remains Unspoken with her piece "Blue Letters'."

Art has been my first love and passion, since I was very young. But over the years I have come to realize, through personal loss, that writing is a very therapeutic addition to my art making. Through difficulties, the writer in me has come to life in new ways with poetry being the main focus. When I am not home educating my two youngest children, I'm scribbling away, noticing, doodling and reading. Snuggling with my husband and eating our favorite snacks together is one of the most relaxing things I can think of after a long, tiring day. As far as inspiration, people fascinate me, so I enjoy soaking in human behaviors in public spaces and using it to write and draw. I've always been a curious person and I don't see that ever going away. I have an account on Substack- Lauren Alison. I have not posted anything yet, but that's where I plan to start. Submitting this piece of work is my first step in sharing my writing with the public.

Blue Letters

The ruffles on my apron

seem to mock the scene.

An envelope discarded as scrap,

has become the vehicle for


My name is being written in

blue capital letters in my Dad’s

lovely, calculated print

for my Mom’s viewing.

My name, for her.

He’s writing it, not saying it.

She’s embarrassed I’ll hear.

But I’m here.

I see the blue ink soak deep.

I hear the stringent squeak of the

dry erase marker.

Each letter, written with intent,

with instruction, with direct

hope of adhesion.

Using what is quickly available,

what is nearby-

before I come by.

But now I know.

And what blame

could I cast?

She doesn’t know my name.

So, I stand in the doorway,

fiddling with those idiot


Hot water filling the rims

of my eyes.

Standing exposed in a moment

I shouldn’t be in.

Her wide eyes look up at me.

I force a smile though the

punch in my sternum

that makes me

want to cough.

I am her only.

Her shame radiates over

my shoulders.

And I lick the tears rolling to

the corners of my lips,

erasing clues.

I cannot let her know it hurts.

She already hurts.

I lean over and kiss her

concerned brow.

Reviewed by Helen H.
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