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Ali Chantel

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Member Since: Feb, 2010

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Phoenix Rising
By Ali Chantel
Friday, February 19, 2010

Rated "G" by the Author.

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This is the first chapter of my new YA novel told in blank verse. This is a story about 15 year old Mercy, an orphan who has no recollection of her passed until she is forced to move with her affluent Mexican family of her father's side. Slowly memories reemerge revealing the gruesome murder of her father. Everyone says he committed suicide, but the nightmares that plaque Mercy reveal that the murder was his own brother. Now Mercy must fight for her father's name without falling victim to lies and corruption.

 The ominous and heavy clouds

concealed the suns warmth

from the frigid march air.


I stood on the edge 

of the 6 foot pit

housing the wooden coffin


My best friend,

M confidante

My grandmother.


The few who paid their respects,

floated away like the breeze

Only Lacey, my neighbor and friend, remained

but she stayed beside the elm tree

leaving me to alone with my grief.

and immense hatred for the grim reaper,

who snatched away everyone important to me,


My mother took her last breath when I took my first,

My father took his own life with a deadly bullet,

And now my grandmother took he defeat to the relentless cancer.


Like today I am overwhelmed with same emotions

that flooded my brain ten years ago

when I watched men shovel soil on my father's grave.


I was only five, but I remember everything.

The deep sobs of black-adorned adults

in the fierce Arizona heat absorbing their tears.

And I remember this very feeling I am experiencing now.



I stood alone that day,

No one touched me,

no one comforted me.

until a feeble old woman

fair-skinned with white hair

traversed across the grave yard

and took my small, innocent soul

three thousand miles away 

to the southern farm situated in the Appalachian Mountains.


But today I stand alone,

and no loving, self sacrificing woman

can take me away 

to a far away land.


I reflect on the day I left behind the desert

But I left behind all the memories I had.

I cannot remember a face from my past,

not even my father's.

I cannot remember who I was 

before the day Mawmaw took me away.


Today I reflect on who I am now.

A granddaughter of a German immigrant.

who raised me alone, like she raised my mother.


I had the farm to call my Neverland,

and chickens, goats, and a horse to call me friends.


She always said I was a splitting image of my mother,

except she was blond, green-eyed, ivory skinned

and I was black hair, black eyes, with tanned skin.

But the way I wrote daily in my journal,

and clogged to bluegrass music,

and sang 

was what reminded her the most of my mother.


But tomorrow I will jet-sail

across the country 

to the foreign family,

my father's family,

who disowned me.


For over a decade I never received a phone call

They forgot about my existence

Just as I have forgotten theirs.


But a week prior to my grandmother's last trip to the hospital,

She made a phone call and asked them to take their stand.

Mawmaw had no living relatives,

as far as I am concerned,

Neither do I.

and now it is their turn.


I protested, I fought.

But Mawmaw silenced my rant,

with a trembling voice,

"You will return to Phoenix.

A phoenix is a mythological bird 

that burned in the Egypt desert,

but raised from the ashes,

and flew away.

You are the Phoenix."


But can I rise from the ashes 

from a past I don't remember

and fly away?

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