To celebrate and highlight the creative writing talent of the Wesleyan community, the Argus Arts & Culture section presents our creative writing issue! Thank you to everyone who shared their work with us, and we hope you enjoy.



by Sophie Gilbert ’23 

blurs in blue velvet melt deep chasms bright, through which silver-tongue songs send signs of ebullient fright,the might of lacewing light in an acetate daze afloat in the whispers of suburbia’s plight.

for some recognition in this scene that won’t stop, i fight cornflower kettles of aching red thoughts or a flea-bitten gaze that one can’t throw away, drowned in a sorrow-filled late autumn’s day. so in searching for stasis (the one that i’d lost) i’m reminded of pastel fluorescents:
the cost of brown sugar smiles and obsidian essence—
the stressors of honey-hued stories so skewed by the bleak parchment nature of evergreen souls,

replace, they say, the murals he stole.



by Anne Kiely, ’24

The hunter’s eyes are open and alert,
Examining the undergrowth for motion.
The gardener does her work on empty dirt.

The hunter’s only tribute to the earth
Is his attention, filtering its potion
Of life and prey, with every sense alert.

The gardener believes the land inert,
Assembles plots of roots she’s weighed and chosen
And thinks she puts them into empty dirt.

A draft of pollen leads the hunter’s search;
He dances with the winding path it goes in
And snatches meat or fruit with eyes alert.

There’s not a breathing thing that she could hurt.
She couldn’t stand to leave behind erosion
By adding nothing to the empty dirt.

The plants she harvests owe her for their birth;
New worlds beneath her stepping feet are woven.
The hunter’s eyes are open and alert;
He’s never walked a day on empty dirt.


Might as well go on

by Emily Hollander ’23

I was walking in the graveyard
When I heard that great creaking
of a pine swaying in the wind.
With each gust it hummed,
as if a giant cicada lay
beneath its bark. To you,
I was the sequoia –
she who embraces flames,
endures disaster, grows taller –
But I am no more resilient
than this scraggy pine,
Whining in the wind. Or
the swallows, who turn
to falling leaves, relinquish
Limp bodies to the wind –
And seem to land on their feet
by some sweet fortune.
Why praise resilience?
I have no other option
than to keep standing. After all,
It’d be quite inconsiderate
to give up living, to topple over
Atop all these graves.


My girl carries a knife

by Emily Hollander ’23

My girl carries a knife

Wields wildly
Slices sky as if
Striking carotid artery
Of an enemy–
Heads roll, dead eyes
Still wide–

Scritch scratch pitter patter
What’s the matter –
Can’t get up here?
From the treetops
White Nike high-tops

Laugh at the silly
People who stand still
Waiting for permission
From those who don’t listen –

No, she defers to
Murderous urges –
When she’s out at night,
Never knows when she might
Have to fashion a weapon
From a branch, bottle
Or kiss–


A Campus Tour

by Ali Hochfelder ’24
Observe the oat milk drinkers, whose hair spans
From bleach blond bangs to impulse pixie-cuts
To floppy brown and muppet-like. Inspect
The weed-smoke clouds personified, and folx
Just here to play a sport. They’ll wear a mask
But take it off when the uptight girl leaves.
The myriad descendants Zoom their labs
Remotely. Campus is a Petri dish
Of life where Bernie Sanders is a God
To which the twenty-somethings pray; “Are you
There Bernie? It’s me, Chad.” They’re bred
Perhaps by Tinder (not for fuel), although
Most people here are queer. Each day consists
of break out rooms, outbreaks, and testing tents.
That long-board has a girlfriend who plays drums.
(Her genes are retro; not like other girls.)
Without a microscope you’ll still see the
She’s and they’s and he’s and ze’s band behind
The bass guitar. They won’t go off campus,
But they share one vape. Observe the vibe check;
Here the clothes are thrifted, and people run
On vegan mac and cheese, caffeine, and stress.
They’re not dangerous, though they might have a
Little chlamydia. Observe how they
Drink yerba mate and work. Their cages
are covered in vines and The Smiths posters.
You should pray to Bernie that you can come,
So you too can learn bass guitar. But I
Suggest you switch to oat milk now and bleach
Your hair. Observe how the oat milk settles
In your coffee. Observe how as the bleach
Seeps into your head, you start to say “bro,”
“Dichotomy,” “resonate,” and “vibing”
In every conversation. And perhaps
Someday, you’ll join the Petri dish and meet
A sexy longboard of your very own.


The Girl to Her Moonbeam

by Ali Hochfelder ’24

Come down from your celestial post!
For I’m the one who loves you most.
I’ll greet you with a wreath of sweets.
You’ll hear how fast my kind heart beats

Your smile is the crescent moon.
The stars above all seem to swoon.
They hope to one day be your bride;
They know your grin controls the tide.

And late at night I go and stare.
Perhaps you think of me out there.
You’re caught up moving the ocean,
Keeping the salted waves in motion.

But I shall make a simple boat
Of lily pads I’ll try to float;
Their flower buds begin to bloom.
I hope you’ll love their sweet perfume.

And though the Siren still may sing,
Don’t think upon her evil wings.
And though the stars still shine and gleam,
I love you most, my sweet moonbeam.

Come down from your celestial post!
We’ll build a home right on the coast.
I’ll keep our house with sweet plum rose.
I hope to be the love you chose.


Cantaloupe [i have not strength to title

by Elijah Comas ’22

it was sitting in the hospital that i realized cantaloupe does taste like coriander

if you try hard enough


it was today when the line for coarse coffee was too long and

i didn’t take my medicine that i realized i’m a bad person

if you try hard enough


it was tomorrow when you erased me and i will know words can mean

anything [break the pattern, subtle pattern, predict the pattern]——and

infinities if there’s a pattern and i realized

if you try hard enough





and. Entropic Eurydic Resistant Hyphenic begin to incarnate themselves in an inaugural terminal of

transitory hesitance tensed within immense suspenSing distance.

Ego is not concern;;; you cut a razorblade hole for me

to fall through and it was then that i realized_______________! and therefore,

i do not deserve the performance of language of orthography of mistake of refusal

of no i do not deserve forwards, reverse, un-no*.


and these days these days i serve cantaloupe soup.



* Hyphenic: (adj.) the antinomian potentials of the hyphen for creating
 disruptive space on the page; of or relating to inhabitable places meant for subversive rest and disruptive healing. see also: hyphenique


Ode to Bumblebee

by Liam Murray ’23

When you speak
With the words you’ve borrowed
You tie the knot
In a cherry stem

Did he come by U.F.O?
Only man I know that got up from the dead
Electrify my heart
I’m totally wired

My radio, believe me
It ain’t nothin’ new
But do you honestly expect me to believe we could ever be the same?
Transform, transform, transform, transform.

I think about you often, often
Please don’t confront me with my failures, I had not forgotten them
Drive my car, into the ocean

Sorcerous skin
And your skin is black metallic
Black and yellow and
My new tongue, it’s plastic

Songs borrowed from, in order of borrowing:

Chris McClarney, “I’m Listening” Damian Rice, “Delicate” Digital Underground, “Tie the Knot” Flobots, “Handle Bars” Jim Sullivan, “U.F.O” Jack Stauber, “Buttercup” The Fall, “Totally Wired” LL Cool J, “I Can’t Live Without My Radio” Taylor Swift, “Should’ve Said No” Daniel Cesar, “Transform” Daniel Johnson, “Some Things Last A Long Time” Nico, “These Days” Pixies, “Wave of Mutilation” Catherine Wheel, “Black Metallic” Wiz Khalifa, “Black and Yellow” PeroPero, “Tongue”


To the Turquoise 1994 Toyota Corolla that Refuses to Die

By Aidan Fitzmaurice ’22

I must confess
what they have said about you is true.

you are no glittering scarab when you lurch down Comm. Ave
shedding paint chips and clouds of smog in your wake

there is no Rosetta stone to decrypt your tongue
of false starts and pleading windshield wipers
no machete-wielding explorers who lust
to bind you in chains and put you on display

the dais of your passenger seat is befitting
of only those who have forgotten what it means to blush
those who no longer shrink from the pallid gaze
of your headlights

carjackers, fingers hungering for larceny,
become picky eaters in your presence, suddenly men of high standards
neighbors retreat behind the safety of their hedges

what they forget
is that a heart still purrs beneath your hood
that each hack of your smoker’s cough is an ode to the empty moonlit street
that every suspension-altering speed bump simply brings us a little closer to God

they forget that corolla means flower petal, but your love language is all vinegar

one day—long after we’re all gone—you’ll inherit this earth
lord of the roaches and the burning trash heaps
an aging drag queen
but a queen nonetheless



by Sonia Menken ’24

Rouse means to get out of bed, not sexual
In Bananagrams, snag the e and steal “sour”
The word rouse came up in the book you gave me
Flapping arms, you explained its meaning in the context of the book, separate from
bring out of sleep; awaken from bed

It takes me so long to awaken from my bed
Our bed, once you visited
Your natural 8am alive time morphed into my 11am and we began
To move as a unit
As you walked up the snowy hill, I curled my tongue during the L in the word “cold,”
Like you do
Cold, told, fold, old…
I don’t want to get old
Or at least not be how I am now
I don’t want to not feel like myself
Like you say
I told you I liked the word “usurp” today
And you turned it into pursue with the addition of an e
Mental Bananagrams
Keeping me perfectly in my little sphere
But helping me grow
Growth is usually seen in retrospect
But I feel it with you
Each day
Each time
We rouse each other to feel
Is that the right way to use it?



by Leslie Rosario-Olivo ’22


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