Archived: A Photograph in the Junk Drawer by Kris Mascarenas

I see my past in sepia tones,
taupe eyes reflect 
clamshell skies and drowsy clouds 
shadow my wayward worries and woes
 of mothers
and dandelions
and copper-colored surly curls tangled
in threads of my sweater 
on shoulders drooping 
like sunflowers in October


Biography: When I was in 4th grade, my godmother gifted me a journal covered in red paisley patterned cloth, inscribed with a poem by her on the first page. It was as though she was passing on a baton of self-discovery and I was to fill in the rest of the crisp pages to the finish line. This was the first time I felt someone’s hope for me that I might discover the value of my voice and personal sentiments. In a family of five siblings, my individual voice and expression was often shrouded by the chaos of daily life, so this gift struck me in such a way that opened up a love for writing I clung to ever since. I have always gravitated towards poetry in particular as I find compressed patterns of heartfelt expression to mirror my inner creative world best. It is my hope to build heart-to-heart connections with my readers by swimming together in our humanity, both in joy and grief, beauty and darkness.