J'accuse: A Fight Against Global Warming

Poetry: J'Accuse!

In support of a movement against the struggle of ocean warming, one stanza at a time.

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Co-authored by Jared Chen

This poem is a winner of the International Bowseat Ocean Awareness Contest, receiving around 1,700 submissions from around the globe.

Bow Seat created the Ocean Awareness Contest in 2012 to teach teenagers about issues facing our local waterways and global ocean and to empower them to speak up for these places and create positive change for our planet. Each year the contest invites students to explore how human actions impact ocean health – with a focus on our roles as both problem-makers and problem-solvers – through the creative arts.

Since its launch, the contest has engaged nearly 10,000 teens from 78 countries and all 50 U.S. states, and Bow Seat has awarded nearly $290,000 in scholarships to help advance their creative talents, passion for the environment, and advocacy skills.

Click here to read the full entry on Bowseat's website.

i. australia

the explosion of carmine, salmon, and chartreuse

lost with the pass of time

from weaving green to jarring white

royal amethyst to bone,

the systematic plague of blistering heat

scorch the dancing polyps

expelled arrays of algae taint the ocean blue

never to return back to former glory

lost to the oppressor, fish swim aimlessly

homes forever destroyed, bleached to the core

forever changed

ii. canada

changes of scenery, white to blue

the ice kingdom falls to the northern sea

polar bears lost to the eternal abyss

nowhere to go they stay, stagnate

clawing, thrashing they call for food

only to be met by unforgiving waves

hungry children silently awaiting a meal

never to come

years shaved off

thousands perish into nothing

a species, gone

warm waters, a demon in disguise

iii. japan

invaders from the deep, pulsing with life,

replace absent nets of fish with gelatinous beings

heaps of jellyfish strangled in the wake of fishing boats,

warning signs of warming temperatures

kilos of natives killed with electrified swords

the wakasa bay lies awake

intruders following the kuroshio current

pillage the homes of others; the impending doom of foreigners

lost without a home to return

cripple the population

a loss of diversity

iv. california, united states

deadly change to the eyes of all

cut down scores of life

the invisible killer, surrounding all

shells of animals, gone

predator detection, gone

essential organisms, gone

strike all, none left behind

the targets, too slow to react

v. east oman

sickening, suffocating, spreading

patches on the gulf as big as mexico

swarm with green and red tides, notorious dead zones

sunlight, blocked; oxygen, depleted

blistering lungs, choked gills

climb up the food chain

from shellfish, domoic acid claws

to sharks, whales, the brains of birds

the human skull the final target

forgotten to the numerous changes,

begone the precious things of the sea.


Authors note: The title "J'accuse" uses the first letter of each of the regions visited to spell out the iconic French word, J' ACCUSE, used by writer, Emile Zola. Thus, we accuse the public for not addressing these pressing issues with full effort.

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To The Friends Who Are Struggling With Dark Times, Don't Ever Forget The Light Your Bring To Others

You're doing your best and I see that.

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To my struggling friends as the new semester begins to kick in, I see you.

You are doing great.

I see your tears of frustration, anger, and stress. It hurts me to see you overwhelmed and stressed. It hurts me to see that you don't see what I see. When I look at you, (Emily, this ones for you) I see a determined driven young woman. I see someone who is striving to get her sh*t together before midterms.

With the countless hours of flight lessons you complete or attempt to complete, the long hours you work on the weekends, and the amount of time I see you put into our church, I can see how you think that you're not doing as hot as you want to be. I can see that you don't see you as I do because you're too busy focusing on your academics, Faith, and finances. I get it, but I want you to know that despite these things, you're amazing.

Despite the fact that you may not have time to step back and reflect on the amazing person that you are, I make the time to reflect for you.

Your hard work doesn't go unnoticed. The way that you always make time for the things you love even if it means interference with something else is something that not a lot of girls in our class do. I admire the way you prioritize and balance your life. Although you may not feel as though you have your poop in a group, it looks like you do.

And that, my friend, is wonderful.

Not because you seem like something you may not be, but because it shows strength and balance. Strength and balance I wish I'd developed sooner. You're doing your best and even though sometimes it may feel like your best isn't enough, for me, it is. For me, I see you doing your best, I see you trying, I see you engaged. Just remember that your best is always good enough for me. It is when you do something well above what you think is your best that I remember why you're my best friend. You put forth everything you have into everything you do and that's a quality that many people lack.

I want to remind you that although you don't feel 100%, it is because of your endless love and dedication that I am where I am today.

Your motivation is what has gotten me to church, back to the gym, and out of bed every morning. You are my favorite person and I feel as though you need to hear this every single day and I try to tell you every day how much you mean to me. You deserve nothing less than genuine happiness and success. You are the type of friend that I didn't know I needed until I met you. Now that you're in my life, good luck leaving. There is nobody else I'd rather worship with, workout with, or get weird stares from other people with. You bring out the absolute best in me and that's something I haven't been able to say about anybody ever. So, to my friend who is struggling, I love you and this storm will also pass.

To my other friends who may be struggling, know that I feel the exact same way about you.

Your smiles are the sunshine in my day. Your laughter is music to my ears, especially the snorts that come along with it. Your hard work and determination is refreshing. Your endless love for me, the gym, genuine happiness, God, coffee, and breakfast dates is rare. I can't express my love for you in words, there just aren't enough of them. I can't express my thanks for having you in my life enough, there just isn't enough thanks to go around. You are my reason to keep going, to persevere, to push through, to get out of bed. You are my reason behind what I do. You are the reason I found myself when I was lost. You are my reason.

So when you feel like the going is tough, like you're not worthy, like you don't want to go on with anything, just remember that I look to you for everything.

That you give me purpose and a reason to thrive. Remember that when you don't feel loved, I love you. I love you with everything in me and you make my world keep spinning. Without you, there would be no true me. You are worthy of everything life has to offer you. You are worthy of so much, so please, remember that the next time you feel as though you're not worthy.

Because you are. You are the light and I love you.

~Happy Life~

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The Movie Watchers

The Types Of People That Watch Movies

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This past weekend I saw the movie of the life time, Avengers Endgame. It was the culmination of 10 years in the making and no there will not be any spoilers in this piece of writing. I however noticed the same trends that occurred each time I went to the movies. The I saw the same people, however they were just in different bodily forms. When my eyes were not glued to the screen out of sheer anxiety and thrill, I managed to catch a quick glance at the type of people that plague our good theaters.

To start off, there are always those people that are good people and don't disturb the movie experiences of others. These are the quiet people, the ones who keep their eyes on the movie and focus on nothing else. These are the people we should all aspire to be, with their bloodshot eyes from not blinking as to not miss a single moment of the movie. While I am not always the Eyes Glued To The Screen movie watcher, I can say with assurance that I am a somewhat follower of this rule. I think everyone should learn from these people.

Next comes the traditional On My Phone Like A Idiot in the movie movie watcher. This is by far the most annoying of all the people that come to a movie. Like I came to be entertained and I paid good money for this, I didn't pay 14 dollars and 31 cents to hear some girl gossip on her phone to her friend about how her boyfriend didn't bring her flowers or some middle aged man attempt to close a business deal while his kids were watching the movie. Either leave your business at home or for the courtesy of others, at least leave it outside the theater. No one brings me more anger than these people just because they don't know any common courtesy or manners.

If your at the movie, you might get hungry or thirsty so its normal for people to bring in some food, most typically being popcorn. This is fine and all but don't chew so loudly that it sounds like Jurassic Park to the person next to you. Or don't sip up your drink in such a way that it makes the people around you wonder how your mother raised you. I call this person, the Slurper. Just, be chill and watch the movie. At least your not like the On My Phone Like An Idiot where you're an inconvenience to the whole theater.

Movies are a great way to get distracted from the horrors that are our personal lives. They are solace for some people, giving us a place to escape from reality. So please, don't disturb the kind movie goers who just need a break from that relentless school, job, or even family. Just give them their peace. So sit down, turn off your cellphone, and enjoy the movie.

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