April 11, 2019

Dear class,

Below are the submissions for our weekly creative blog:

Jenise and Daniela.

Looking forward to reading your work!


Jenise Lopez 04_09pdf


A Place to Remember
Close your eyes. Hear the wind wrestling through the leaves. Smell the warm damp air. Feel the sun caress your skin. All around you is life. And then there’s the gate. The giant gate. The white rusted copper gate. Tall and rigid. It stands alone amongst the organic.The gate keeps everything in and everything out. On this side of the gate there is life. On this side of the gate there is green and yellow and brown. On this side of the gate there are chirps and tweets and growls. Walking towards it you can feel the leaves scrunching beneath your feet. The branches and twigs  brush against your arms. As you get closer it gets quieter. The life around you becomes hushed as if it too knows of the gates existence. Step. Step. Less green. Step step. No more winding paths. Step. Step. The smell of metal fills the air. Step and there it is. It’s like the sun even knows that life ends here as it hides behind the distant trees. The wind knows not to disturb its presence. Everything stops at the gate. And there you are staring it down. And there it is staring right back.


  1. Jenise: I can’t see anything. I can’t hear anything. I can’t feel anything. Am I falling? Where is the plane? Where are all the others? The silence is deafening. What is wrong? I have no breath, no heartbeat. That thumping that you hear all your life is gone. The ebb and flow of your breath going in and out is gone. I never knew how much noise life has. You think that the world is at its most quiet when lay in the dark before bed, but I did not know how wrong I was. I miss how my face would become hot from the pillow and the swift satisfying crunch I would get from flipping it over to the cool side. The sublime hum of running your legs across a fresh set of sheets. That slight shiver you get when a cool breeze runs across your skin, causing you to sharply inhale. But what I miss the most is the thumping. Thump Thump that rhythm that we live by. The thump thump that woos us to sleep in the darkness. Holy thump thump that if we listen closely can answer any question we have.
    Now all I have is silence…silence.

    The greatest wall creation has ever made are the walls that keep life and death apart. But life and death cannot be totally sealed off from one another. For without one the other can not exist. So creation made the great gates. The gates guard the places where the walls are at their thinnest. For here the souls of the dead gather to wait for the gates to open so they can pass into the land of the dead. The gates only open in the brief moment when both the sun and mood have turned away from the earth. For it is at this moment that life and death are equal. All beings living and dead know that the gates are not to be disturbed. They are holy and beyond reproach even among the gods. But one creature born when the sun and moon had turned away, was not afraid of the gates. The did not know of their purpose and now seek to be their master.

    1. Warren I really liked how you described the crazy quiet of this world (afterlife?another dimension?). My favorite line is “I never knew how much noise life has. “√√

      Great work on Daniels’s too!

  2. 1) I wake up, confused. I get off my seat, trying to find the bathroom to brush my teeth. As I pass down these hallways, I realize that there are people just lying on the floor. Weird. I make my way to the bathroom to hear a baby crying in the background. I roll my eyes, “Oh great, another one”, Only to realize that I don’t have my toothbrush or my toothpaste in the place that it usually is. In fact, this isn’t even my bathroom… In fact, this isn’t even a bathroom… What I just walked through didn’t contain walls… It was an isle. I was in the cockpit with what seemed to be two decapitated bodies. Their seatbelts and the crash must have split them into many parts. As disgusted as I wanted this situation to be, I find myself staring. It was as if I knew the situation but I just didn’t understand it. Suddenly, the baby’s cries brought me back. Instinct kicks in, I knew that I had to get the baby off this place, but I didn’t understand why. I grabbed whatever food supplies, luggage, medication, and a nifty axe that I found and threw it off the plane. I got off to what seems to be an island. In the far off distance I can see some sort of alien technology. It was admitting what seems to be electronic pulses. Suddenly, I see movement on the trees and what appears to be three people feasting on a human body. In an instant, my memories suddenly became very clear. I had just been through a plane crash and what I saw were real bodies, decapitated bloody organs and limbs. I start to throw up in disgust as a wave of mental anguish hits me. The cannibals seemed to have heard me and start to point out my location. With them starting to run towards me, I see the axe that I threw down in front of me. “How convenient, it’s as if I had plot armor or something.” I chuckle to myself and I knew what I had to do. With the axe in hand and the baby that I knew had to be saved, I rush towards the cannibals, excited for what leads ahead.

    2) “Knock knock” I say. “Really? You come here just to tell a joke to an inanimate object? Interesting how you lived life.” The gate responds back. I recoil in surprise, “Jesus Christ, I didn’t actually think you’d respond.” The gate warps into the shape of a human. “So, you’re dead…” A long pause of silence fills the air. “Uh huh. So is this like, the gate to heaven?” I say. She chuckles, “No, this is purgatory. We heard your wish of becoming a ghost. But, we’re here to ask you why you would request such a thing before you’re dead. Even the pastor heard your confession.
    Why not heaven? You’re one weird person you know.” She asked. “Yeah, I just wanted to mess with some people on earth. Wait, what do you mean, “before you’re dead”? I thought I was already dead.” “No. Well technically you are, you’re in the ER right now. Your eyes are just closed at the moment. You’ve been dead for 30 seconds but you’ll be brought back once we hear the request of where you want to go after you’ve died. Convenient, isn’t it? But your death is not scheduled today. Oh and don’t trip on your way back.” I looked at her, confused. “Wait, wh-” suddenly my spirit propels backward down the path that I took. I look back and I see my body and a couple of doctors treating me. I land on my body, suddenly coming back to life. I spit out the tube that they insert into my throat, freaking out as there’s a huge gaping hole on my stomach. The doctors insert a needle into my body and I pass out again. I wake up in a hospital bed. I slowly, and painfully, get off my bed. I trip on a pen that somebody must have dropped. “Oh, so that’s what she meant.” I roll my eyes. “Nurse, I need assistance.” I groan as I loudly shout. A nurse comes into the room. “Hey, let me help you. You shouldn’t be getting off the bed, you just survived a car crash sir, please rest.” He says. As I sit in the hospital for the next three months, I smile with anticipation knowing that there’s a certain day I’m going to die. It’s time to live my life if it’s already set, and I walk out of the hospital, filled with a new found love for life and brimming with determination.

    1. I love you humor. It is SO quiet but it kicks in your writing the best possible moments. And by the way, your extension of Jenise’s piece is amazing. It is vivid, it has clear perspective, describes details, tells us a story and takes us on a journey. Very good work.

      Brilliant work on Daniela’s. I was hoping to read even more. Great work Robin!

  3. Jenise: Being the only survivor of a plane crash is a thought that haunts me to this day. I’ll never forget the faces of the people around me. Some turned as pale as ghosts, their vacation tan faded faster than the plane went down. The only thing I could recall from that day is floating with my life jacket on, in middle of the ocean and a rescue boat lifting me up to safety. Most importantly, thinking of my husband’s face trembling with fear the last time I saw him and once again, I fainted.

    Daniela: I will do whatever it takes to make it past the gate but there is some type of force field blocking me from doing so. The wind stops blowing here, the noises get lower and lower, complete silence at the doors of the gate. The organic greenery on the other side is mocking me. On this side, the grass is dead and smells of rust, the branches and twigs covering my path to the gate! I can’t get passed it, but I will, and I must!

  4. I must’ve taken too much anxiety medication, right? No one likes to fly with me for this very reason. I get so worked up, and every time I hear a creak or feel a bump I create some exaggerated story in my head I worry myself into a panic. I must just be sleeping and soon we’ll land and the restlessness of the passengers next to me will wake me up. At least I have my emotional support dog with me on this medication-induced dream island. He’s barking at some electrical buzzing, but maybe he’s actually barking under the seat in front of me and soon I’ll wake up. This has to be a dream!

    I open my eyes and everything around me is metal and concrete. Loud, bulky vehicles are zooming past; people are walking like zombies in the streets staring at their phones. There’s an argument between a store owner and teenager out on the street. Which side of the gate am I really on? Nothing around me looks as if it has any life left to it. I’m exhausted from the overstimulation and just want to feel that damp air and sunshine caressing my face again.

  5. Jenise:

    A bright light flashes, I closed my eyes to brace for impact, I did not know what to expect but I just prayed that we would all get through this alive. As we went through the electrical currents were so bright, was this the end? I woke up suddenly, I’m in my bed? that felt so real I could have sworn I was really on that plane. My head is killing me and I feel so lethargic I can barley move. I look around and everything seems normal. I decide to walk downstairs but I feel this intense pounding in my head, this must be one killer headache. As I’m walking down the stairs I feel this jolt in my body that sends me spiraling down the staircase. The force was so strong, what is happening to me? I look around the room and the walls begin to fade and glitch in and out. Screaming fills my ears “am I still in a nightmare?” I take a deep breath and open my eyes, I am back on the plane and we are still surrounded by the destruction and electricity. I look out the window and I see the bright light flash again…. I wake up and I am back in my room, everything seems normal.


    I feel that I am on the wrong side of gate, why am I cut off from the nature, why must I not enjoy the simple wounder the earth provides. I try to pry open the gate but it is locked, the bars are to close together and I can not squeeze through. The gate is higher than the tallest sky scraper I have ever seen so I can not climb over. All of a sudden I hear an ominous voice “you may not receive the gifts of the earth because you do not know how to care for them, I watch your species desecrate and destroy all the natural wonders. Until you start to take care of nature and treat it humanly you are forbidden from entering the other side of this gate.” I am shocked “But I am not like everyone else I do care about the earth please let me through!” The voice replies “you humans take nature for granted and for that reason you may not cross, you are all responsible for the actions of your people.”

  6. Jenise: The passengers aboard the plane scream in what seems like harmony. This was the last thing which I perceived, as the screams continuously dispersed. A bright blinding light overtakes my sight, while a high-pitched screech simultaneously occurred. I have this tingling sensation throughout my whole body which seems to be unexplainable. I gaze upon my panoramic view only to find that there is no one in sight, but the screech begins to drown out what’s left of my sense of hearing. I begin to walk towards the cockpit, which is now closed. As I open the door, to my surprise there is nothing but a light at the end of a tunnel.

    Daniela: As I stand at the foot of the oxidized copper gate, I can’t help but feel a weariness overcome my body. Each step closer delivers me to a destination that I know not what entails. A figure dressed in all black stands to the left of the gate like a statue, with no movement or tell-tale signs of life. Suddenly, the gatekeeper moves his head looking directly at me. “H-hello?” I murmured, unsure of who this figure was. As soon as I finished uttering the word, the gate keeper raised his deathly pale hand presenting me with a key. I hesitantly took it and noticed a lock upon the gate. I put the key in and twisted it. The door went ajar and I stepped in only to fall into a pit of darkness. Perpetual darkness engulfed me.

    1. Brandon great use of sound, imagery and simple sensory perceptions together in short sentences which helps tremendously with the pacing and the intensity of circumstances. It’s a very vivid image. (Jenise’s piece). Again, I think you created a great soundscape.

  7. Jenise: I woke up startled on the beach , sand all over my body. Next to me lay people i didn’t know. Probably people from the plane. Wasn’t I on the plane but why am i on the beach? Memories flew back to my mind, screams of people saying they were going to die. The shaking of the plane and the announcement of the pilot saying for us to take the oxygen mask and buckle your seatbelt properly. Than blank, everything after that blank i can’t remember the crash. I look at my body that’s strange no injury. The other people started to get up there were other that were already up. ‘We have to find where we are ‘ they said. I didn’t listen further it was strange what happened to the plane? Where did it go? The seem to be no way of this island. This would take a while.

    Daniela:The gate that separated the living and the dead. One side everything was colorful and beautiful. The other grey and dark , not beautiful. Well not beautiful to many but to me yes it was. I could to through both , back and forth. Sometime i would stay on the living side and sometime i would stay on the dead side. Whatever pleased me on that day. Not many could do that, go between the gate to both section. If they tried they would die in a few hours. Today i was on the living side laying on the grass ,watching the clouds. I slowly closed my eyes it was a good day.

    1. Carla I love the idea of back and forth swinging between life and death.I wish I knew what happened to this peculiar person “today”. Sounds like a very interesting character for a movie or a novel…

  8. 1. As panic ensues the entire plane, and what seems to be our final moments come dwindling down as we approach the giant electric triangle. I can’t help but think what is death like? Is it just nothing but darkness or do you return to earth to live another life? Is it just like they say in stories?, is there a light which you have to go towards? Is this giant electric triangle the “light”? The plane comes within a few feet of the triangle as I take in one final breath and prepare myself to die. I accept death at this point I’ve had a good long life and if this is how it ends so be it. A flash of light blinds my eyes as we come in contact with the triangle. Next thing I know I’m in my seat on the plane. I try to slap myself awake and try to figure out what just happened. I look out the window and there was nothing except the bright sun. It appears that everything is back to normal and nothing happened at all. I take a deep breath and close my eyes. Then out of nowhere I hear alarms going off and I look up to see the seat belt sign glowing.

    2. Beyond this gate is the unknown. I never crossed this gate and I am afraid to do so. I feel so safe on this side, the green, the yellow, the brown all keep me safe. The birds after all these years have become my only friends. The gate is just intimidating to look at, I can’t even stare at it. I even got used to the wind blowing at a certain speed and in a certain direction. The sun also provides the perfect temperature for me to live in. The only thing that scares me is this giant dull gate. I would rather die here than cross that gate. This is my safe space, my home…

  9. Jenise

    Singing, dancing, jumping. So drunk I become blind. “yo yo pass me that bottle” somebody yelled. I look at him laughing. But wait why is it so dark. Where did the sun go. I feel like throwing up I’ll be back I said to my friends still laughing. I see people running around scared. They panicking making phone calls. I ignored all the noise and continued to throw up. I lift my head from the other side of the ocean. I see a plane and I blink twice to see a big mountain on the ocean and bright blue lightning connecting between two what seems like to be castles. A bright ring light all around the mountain. It seems like it’s there to protect the place, so intruders don’t get in. “Wow! How beautifully, am I in heaven”. I say to myself laughing. Why is it so dark isn’t heaven suppose to be a bright place. The biggest wave I’ve never seen appear out of nowhere. Next thing i know my alarm started to ring “bling bling bling”. Jump out of the bed, I’m going to be late.


    “My granddaughter let’s go, let’s go. they are waiting for us. It’s beautiful on the other side. There’s no night or day” Grandma said, looking happy “Who’s waiting for us grandma?. This place look strange. What is this big gate? Why does it give me a bad feeling?”. Your family, your great great grandma, your uncles, your aunts” grandma said. You’re dead grandma, all y’all dead, why should I go with you. Because you need to be with your family. “Okay, I’ll take your word for it” I said following grandma. She open the gate door to enter. As soon i was about to walk though. I heard a voice ”where are you going, are you crazy. You didn’t fulfill your purpose yet. All your dreams are going to die. you better come back” I heard the voice said. Oh grandma I’ll go with you next time I heard somebody calling me I said to her. “there won’t be a next time, so don’t wait on me”. Grandma said. I woke up thinking what a weird dream.

  10. Response to Jenise

    Before boarding my flight I had a terrible feeling that something wrong was going to happen. Everything seemed normal on the plane and everyone looked fine. We took off and midway through I could not believe that the pilot was making announcements of turbulence. I was afraid and paranoid thinking we were going to die. The plane was flying low and we could see gigantic ships in the ocean and a huge circuit of light. The plane jolted going up and down, side to side. All the passengers were holding on to their seats thinking this could be the end…

    Response to Daniela

    Was it all a dream that I just experienced or was it real. Confused as I could be I had no idea what had just happened. I felt a sense of tiredness and pain in my whole body. I was in a deep shock for a period of time that I forgot who I was. I just remember seeing a huge gate that I didn’t know where it led to. To go in or no was the main decision I was going to take. If I go now I knew for sure that I wouldn’t return back from where I came from. Scared as I could be I was awoken in sweat thanking god it was all a dream.

  11. 1.. We were getting closer and closer to the big void , i suddenly closed my eyes because i didn’t want to watch my end. Everything was peach black no sound no lights, only me and a couple of passengers floating around the void. We were panicking and crying we didn’t know were we went or if we were death. The black void had something. It was filled with screams and confusion and we couldn’t do anything but to wait for an inevitable death.
    2..I wonder if I’m alone here, if is just me and this gate that separated death and life. I get it , it separates me from death, but i have lived and seen all the wonders in this land filled with life. I know every inch of it and every scratch on the trees. I haven’t seen anyone that looks like me, I’m the only one in this place and makes me feel… Uneasy. Is it weird that the dark world across this gate seem beautiful, the sky looses light and what is left is a crimson red Moon. I a bright color the only color. Somehow i hear a voice calling me and im curious to see what this land offers

    1. -is a bright color the only color. Somehow i can hear a voice calling me and I’m Curious to see what this place offers. Probably ill find a friend and i won’t feel alone anymore.

  12. Jenise:
    Moments before the plane touches the triangle, I jump out of my sleep. The passenger next to me looks at me like I’m weird. I feel hot and touch my shirt. It is soaked in sweat. I turn around and look at the other passengers. Most of them are sleeping. I slide the window cover up and notice that it is night now. I see the stars, close my eyes and thank God that it was all a dream. Ever since I survived that first plane crash a few years ago in the winter, it has been a struggle to visit my parents in Ohio again. But here I am facing my fears. I see the flight attendants bringing out the snacks and drinks and ask for a water. I finish the cup and force myself to fall back asleep hoping the dream this time is much better.

    I put my ears to the gate to try to hear what is on the other side, but I hear silence. I take a few steps back to take a good look at the gate. I hear the wind, the sun gets brighter, and the smell of warm damp air comes back again. I turn around and take in the amazing nature I see. Absorbing all of its beauty. I turn back around facing the gate, walk up again, and feel the gate. It is cold. I was curious to get past it, but after realizing nature was not in tune with the other side of the gate, I quickly changed my mind. I didn’t want what was on the other side. It felt cold and dark. It wasn’t right for me. It was a state mentally and emotionally I remember being in. I turn around and walk away from the gate, smiling with my head held high and not looking back or worrying what was on the other side.

  13. Jenise: Feeling anxious for this cruise to sail around the Bahamas and about 300 hundreds of people join us. We all check inside the boat and its magnificent and beautiful. Soon were going to be in paradise I say. Spoken to soon all of a sudden the boat has lost control and the waves are beginning to grow bigger. My biggest fear is to die drowning I think oh boy is this really how it’s going to end? I see a triangle and it’s in the middle of the ocean its pulling us closer and I don’t know if this is good or bad. This triangle is powerful and it wants us, it wants our souls. I close my eyes and Memories of my family spring into my mind and suddenly find peace. Next I open my eyes and we turn right before we are sucked into this evil triangle. Luckily the sailor was able to save us all and dogged this horrific catastrophe.
    Daniela: On this side of the gate I gaze upon the lake and I’m surrounded by dandelions, sunflowers, palm trees, green grass, the atmosphere is vibrant. I can smell the salty air, the scent never gets old and the presence of this side is healing. The sun is warm and the sound of the waves hitting against each other is delightful. on the other side of the gate is “misleading” appearing to be good but it feeds on negativity. humans can self-destruct and guide themselves towards the other side of the gate, where it’s becomes dark, quiet, cold. Nothing good ever comes from this side.

  14. Who would have known this would be the worst morning of my life. Till this day, it still haunts me to ever get on a plane. I remember all the faces that were on board, all scared to death. I and my sibling were scared and haven’t known what was going on. We pulled blinds open to see what was going on, the sky was black. Everyone was running around, the plane was about to crash. I’ve never thought this was going to be the last time I was going to see my family. I had lost everyone that I ever loved.
    As a child, I’ve always have been curious about the giant gate. My mother has always told me stories about this giant gate. She’s always described it to be magical. On one side of the gate, there was life and the other side was dead. The gate to me represented life. On one side it was all green, yellow, and brown and the other was dark. I’ve always questioned my mother why the other was dark?

  15. Jenise:
    The entrance was like the gates to heaven. The sea was crystal blue and from our view, we could see the sea turtles swimming at a distance from the shore. The palm trees had ripe coconuts hanging. There were many families with different backgrounds and of many ages. Everyone seemed to get along and be at peace with each other. Is this was we all have been searching for? Paradise is what this was.

    Suddenly I am no longer at the same home, sitting in bed watching television. I looked at the window since there was no lights or electricity. It was a complete big fog and you could see no buildings in the distance. As I walked down, I see apartment doors open but with no sign of anyone inside. The strong aroma of metal hit me hard as I walk out.

  16. “We miss him terribly” said Carl’s mother. “I lost my husband and child” said Aidan’s wife. Nobody had any reason to suspect their loved ones not to return on the flight. With no survivors, nobody can retell what happened and the reason for all the lost lives. After further investigation the news channels reported that the pilot lost control and magnetic forces drew the plane downwards and collapsed into the island.
    The gate was intimidating always nearing the gate but never daring to touch or enter. During my childhood the stories that came from the neighborhood kids in short were kids who didn’t return and warning signs, but everything was uncertain as I never entered myself. All the warning signs and what had supposedly happened could all just be that fictional stories and you don’t know until you’ve experienced for yourself what’s behind the gate.

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