I count each step on poured concrete pathways that bring me closer to you. You are the steam from my peppermint tea while it steeps, the leaves
overpowering the boiled water, the tea too hot to drink. It coats my esophagus, fills my stomach, burns my tongue. But it hurts
less than the litany of unanswered messages, my incessant daydreams of more, of quiet moments in the haze of morning. You are brick walls
drenched in fading golden hour sunlight, walks across sidewalks cracked like the creases on your palm, sadness tucked into every line.
Mattie Shepard ’18 majored in creative writing. She is now based in Columbus fulfilling her dream as a bookseller and continuing her passion for fencing—a passion she found on the Hill.