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I sit on the couch, curled in a blanket, watching television. The only sound is the sibilant perfection of actor voices synchronized to entertainment timing. It’s pathetic how comforting it feels.

The house is hollow.

There are the single Mom hours with my children. Wonderful busy, demanding hours that fill the house with kid sounds and bustle with meals to be made, conversations, homework and the slow …

Chapter One: An Awakening

"You made me love you/I didn't wanna do it, I didn't wanna do it..." -Trumpeter Harry James 1939 hit song*


Red Carlotti had a dark sexual past beginning at the tender age of five when Ascapio Ponti, a rough eleven-year old Italian neighborhood boy, known amongst the small gang he led on Elizabeth Place as simply "Scap", quietly raped the child one late, …

In the fifth grade, my friends and I laid extensive Dungeons and Dragons dungeon blueprints on a table in the back of the classroom and rolled our twelve-sided dice during recess. Sometimes our role-playing games spilled over into regular classtime, and, much to the amusement of the other students, occasionally the teacher would let us continue playing. We learned an important lesson: popular kids don’t play Dungeons and Dragons, because …

When one comes into your life, they take all that is you and put it in a little glass jar for a time. They cradle it. Protect it. You are safe and loved. For a time, only. From inside the jar there seems to be no end to your world; no change. This world of warmth. Of closeness.
And then, after a time, they have to put it down.Read more »

“Hey girl,” The sound of Melissa’s voice came through crisp and clear despite the Nor’easter that had shut off Brianna’s power for the whole night. “What’s up?”
Brianna rubbed her eyes and sat up in bed so she would sound more awake over the phone. “I was wondering if you knew if we had school today?” Brianna asked looking out the window. “The power went out and I wasn’t …

I never knew a single person could sweat that bad. It was in the middle of July and the rain clouds were coming; I was about to get more sticky. Growing up in the Rocky Mountains for most of my summers, the humid south was completely foreign.

I found some shade to sit under while I questioned myself about why I was here. Looking around at the empty streets …

By Katherine Beard

My roommate was crazy and she had the medication to prove it. Campus was a lot bigger then I had imagined and thus had made me late to numerous classes. Academic courses were engaging but extremely large and foreign. I could barely cook popcorn, let alone a nutritious meal in the kitchen of my apartment. I thought one had to be convicted of a crime to …

After only a few hours of being alive, the doctors and my parents agreed to pull the respirator giving my baby sister life.

We waited outside the hospital room for what seemed like days, but it was actually only one hour. All I could think was “Why did this have to happen to my sister?”

I had been waiting for so long to take care of my baby …

After one of my first stand-up comedy performances, I began a tradition of leaving the stage and joining the herd of people bottlenecking towards the exit. Being small I could usually weave in and out of people and hear their comments about the show without them noticing I was there. Usually there would be comments like “man that first guy was hilarious,” or “I loved that joke about dancing at …

All summer I looked forward to visiting Mauthausen, a concentration camp tucked in the hills of Austria. My fellow study abroad-ers went at various times during our three-month stay, but none came back willing to talk about the experience, which heightened my curiosity.

I immediately understood their silence when I stepped out of the taxi into the heavy, foggy air. The place was unnervingly quiet with a reverence that …

We were pedaling on the tandem bike, enjoying the first day of our honeymoon. We were in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, riding a rented bike along the Colorado River. On our left lay the river, where every few minutes a yellow raft of people floated by. On our right stood a tall concrete wall, dividing the trail from the highway.
One second we were waving at the rafters, dinging the tin …

By Brooke Self

The lights were dim and the room was full. I was sitting in the middle of a movie theater five-thousand miles away from home with my Norwegian boyfriend and his family. Christmas was only a few days away and the theater was packed. Not to mention this was only the second week Avatar, the Blockbuster hit written and directed by James Cameron, had been released.Read more »

“Sorry, what size again?” I wiped my forehead and adjusted my Dunkin’ Donuts hat, making sure my knuckles were facing up. Customers don’t like complimentary sweat on their blended drinks.

She flipped her brunette locks, reminding me of a horse, snorting and kicking up dust in desperation to run.

“Medium. I said medium already.”

I poured the ingredients into the right-sized plastic cup. The customer’s eyes flashed …

By Chelsea Sargent

The bell rang on a hot Tuesday afternoon in June 2000. The blistering Arizona sun was high above us as my best friend and I got out of our summer school class and headed for the parking lot where Mom would be waiting to take us home.

When I got inside the car, I notice something was different from the looks on my two …

My pajamas were simple Carters; the slim-fitting, belly baring, two piece, short sleeved top and long legged bottoms that every little girl of the 70's seemed to wear. They were what my mother bought for practicality's sake and surely, for price. Most weekends, as soon as school let out on Friday, you would find me throwing my pajamas and a couple changes of clothes in a bag and …

I traveled to the state of Alaska in 1998 to visit family. I can vividly remember my aunt asking me whether I wanted to see him or not. Meeting my father for the first time at the age of ten probably wasn’t the best experience I’ve ever had in my life. My mother was engaged to Keith and separated before I was ever born. While the …

Smoking a pack of cigarettes a day and partying like Charlie Sheen if he was in Columbia was my everyday life until I made the decision to join the United States Army. Day one of boot camp I still smoked all the way up until the Drill Instructor tore the cigarette out of my mouth and shoved me to the ground. That moment where I was face down in mud, …

My parents divorced I was 12 1/2 and hadn't seen my Dad in almost a year,we went to California to visit him and the first day there my brother was hit by a car. He only needed stitches much to all our relief. Our Dad told us not to tell our Mom what happened because he was afraid she would make us come home and he wouldn't see us …

Four months ago I was fired from my job. Because the new company where I was working didn't like my father. I thought losing my job was the worst thing ever, I wasn't sure what was going to happen to me. Then I remembered about one of my favorite books "Into the wild," and realized that losing my job isn't the end of the world. But a new adventure so …

Exactly ten years after a divorce, I woke one morning and almost heard a little "snap". Just like that, I knew I was healed - that after being in limbo for a decade I had finally woken up to what it means to be human again. I relearned how to feel and to live IN the moment, with no past or future to bind me. I was alive with every …
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The Moment Book

Moments from the SMITH Community

Tomorrowland "Daisy, F3," my son Archer says as we pull into our parking spot. Disneyland’s about to open and we've arrived, just the two of us, our last hoorah before school starts. *** The alarm goes off and I pull the pillow tightly over my head. My husband, Hal, offers to wake the kids so I roll over, fall back asleep until Archer's voice wakes me, this time for good. "Hi, Mommy. It's …
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With Both Hands Whenever I think of my mother, my mind flips to this story. Not to the whole story, but right to the middle of it, the worst moments of it. For me, that's where the story always starts. My mother was beating the hell out of me. The first few blows seemed to come from every direction as I grabbed my nightgown and pulled it over my head, not …
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Reasons to be Thankful By Robert Israel They scraped me off the street, my bicycle in a heap nearby, and ever so gingerly placed me on the gurney. A crowd of curious onlookers watched intently, thankful they were not being loaded onto the ambulance. The nurses at the hospital were calming as nurses are wont to be, and administered an intravenous tube of morphine, and soon everything around me became fuzzy and numb, and the …
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Read More Community Moments →
 
SMITH Magazine

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