My dreams always felt like they were going to stay dreams. Growing up I knew that my life was a complete disaster full of misery and loss, and yet I always kept a positive mentality. I would always tell myself that I was going to get through this pain and confusion; all I needed to do was make it to the next day. My willingness to make it has helped me through my struggles and to stay true to myself even when it felt like watering myself down was the easier thing to do.
Writing came into my life organically and I am blessed that it did when it did because it truly helped me to get through my pain and also remember my happy days. Since the age of ten I started writing in journals, doing everyday entries just to be able to let out some of the hurt I was feeling by releasing it onto paper.
Having been system impacted from an early age gave me a sense of feeling like a nobody just living in a world of somebody's. So I initially started writing because I didn't want to forget my own life or what I was going through and because deep down inside I mattered to myself and I wanted to remember in detail what I felt during critical times in my life.
Writing is not just a way of communication for me but an art where I can never be wrong and where I can always find comfort in being vulnerable to unwind my mind and get lost in the strokes of my pen, writing whatever my soul desires.
My journal entries–although some are very painful–help me remember moments like the day I got jumped into the gang life on March 11, 2005 at 10 years old, or the day I was introduced to Crystal Meth on July 13, 2006 at 11 years old (and didn't end until I was 19 years old), or the day when I was incarcerated for the first time on August 1, 2008 at 13 years old (and stayed on probation until I was 18 years old).
But the entries didn't stay consistently negative. When I read them now, I can't help but feel emotional because I also see growth and beauty.
All entries and moments in my life are equally valuable, however dark or beautiful some of them are. It proves to me that I am living, that I am alive, and that I am the only person that can write my story. And it's not done yet.
December 18, 2014 at 20 years old, I became a mother. May 26, 2018, I graduated from Fullerton College with my A.A. June 13, 2021 I graduated with my B.A from Cal State Fullerton. And June 18, 2023 I graduated from the University of California, Irvine with my Masters in Criminology, Law and Society.
Every day I continue to fight because that's what I do. My Journals remind me of all the fights I've been through. Most of them have been mental battles, some physical. Today I can appreciate them all. We don't have control over what happens to us during our life but we do have control over how we react and how we choose to handle what happens. I will always choose to FIGHT, mentally, physically and spiritually. I am the first to obtain a Masters Degree in my family but I know I will not be the last.
I've learned to fall in love with my pain and use it as a tool in my life rather than a setback.
All entries and moments in my life are equally valuable, however dark or beautiful some of them are. It proves to me that I am living, that I am alive, and that I am the only person that can write my story. And it's not done yet.

Journal No.1
(13 years old)

Yesterday me and Freak almost stole a car. We got inside a car and jacked some gum. Well she jacked the gum. And then the stupid ass guy I guess left his car keys inside the car my dumbass got them. And then the guy came and we started running hard. But I still have the keys with me. I hope I don’t get caught I promise god I’ll never ever do that again. I didn’t go to church today. I so mean when it comes down to god. Oooh and yesterday I also went to a feild trip with the church.

The day I got expelled from the Fullerton School District. I was so fucken high. I was so blazed out fucken faded!!!

Fuck tomorrow I go to school at 7:30. And I have to wake up fucken early 5:00am. Well that’s early for me. Today I didn’t do shit. I’m just waiting for March 24 so I can go back with my mom legally. And so I can go kick it day and night. My cousin Mario said that he could get me out of the gang but I’m not sure what I should [do]. I mean I really do love Tokers Town with all my heart. But I don’t want anything bad to happen to me. But in the same time I tell myself shit happens just go for it, get in the hood. But then I tell myself will I get respect. What will I get in exchange? I don’t know. All I want is to get out of Buena Park Learning Center and go to Fullerton Access. But I don’t know what’s going to be going down in these couple days. But you know what. Life is life. I am going to let it bring whatever it has to bring.

Is Fullerton everything? I once loved Fullerton. But now I don’t know what love is. I mean I should love it. I live in it and back it up. I guess I’m gonna end up being a gang member of Fullerton Tokers Town. And now I’m gonna live with a hurtful feeling in my heart. And I have to stay with this feeling forever. I just hope God could forgive all things that I have done and things that I haven’t done yet.

Fuck I’m still attending Buena Park learning Center. And I’m still talking to Daisy. She’s cool but she’s from Anaheim La Colonia. And she’s a enemy. But no matter what I’m gonna love her like a homegurl 4ever. Well at least in my eyes. But fuck it I’ll be puting it down for my hood to the fullest. So fuck it.

Dam I haven’t wrote shit down for a while. Alot of stuff has been going down on these couple days. Well I don’t know shit about shit. But I do know that I have been getting high lately. I went to my first meeting already. (With the homegurls). And I fuckened learned a lot of fucken shit. Well for today there’s nothing really going on but my cousin Lucero has to tell me something hopefully it’s nothing bad. I mean I don’t think that I have fucked up in anyway. So I’ll just let her tell me whenever she feels like telling me. Dagger.

Today I got out of the halls...I was in there for 21 days....and fuck that shit sucked ass man....When I got out I heard that Emir was cheating on me…Well fuck it you lose some and you get some. In this case I lost it.... Well he tried calling me but I ignored him up the ass....Guess I’ll just get my self another man...and that won’t be any problem that’s 4 sure....Well Fuck Emir that’s 4 sure…I fucken hate him with the passion man... Lil Dagger 4 Life...

Journal No. 1: April 6, 2007 – August 21, 2008

Journal No.2
(15 years old)

Damn well today I went to school and my PO [probation officer] came to my house and well he didn’t find nothing in my drawers. So I’m good and well just [trying to] keep out of trouble. Tomorrow Ima go to school and my teacher Mrs. Lowe is going to get me some sun chips and an Arizona. That’s cool. I like my teacher very much. She’s the best. Well that’s about it.

Well today is Tuesday and Damn it’s been a weird weekend. I got drunk as fuck on Saturday. I got so drunk I started crying and then it was the day that Rascal died. Fuck I was crying because of the 2 abortions I had. But I’m trying to  get through it, you know. And then yesterday both Raymond’s puppy Ginger died and my aunt’s (Tia Gloria’s) mom died. And she went to Mexico. And so did Brenda. Fuck this year is not coming so good so far. Damn well this year Ima start working, well, when I’m 16. [...] Well damn besides all this shit that has been happening I’m alright. And just trying to get skinny and just want to get through life. So I’m glad I’m still trying to be strong.

Strong is the way to be!

Today I didn’t go to school but fuck its cuz its been raining a lot and this weather is a bitch man. It started hailing yesterday and well today is pretty boring and I love it. I like it when I have nothing to do cuz then I find something to do. Well I’m still trying to loose, I mean lose weight. And well I just really want to lose weight so that I could look way better. Well I’m not saying I look bad but I just wanna look better. But I just think that Raymond is better than me, that's why I don’t go out anywhere with him. Yup that’s why I don’t go anywhere with him but fuck as soon as I get skinnier I’ll go out with him.

Ooh Dear god. Hear me out. You know I ♥️ you. My Lord. But it’s just too much money. My mom already has to pay for my court, for myself being in juvenile hall and then for being in Orangewood and then they put $500 more dollars. Ooh and I have court tomorrow. Like if that’s not enough, I was thinking about dropping out. But no. I can make it. I know I can. It’s my second year and I know I can make it. With God’s help I know I can. Well hopefully I do go to the retreat this Saturday. Cuz I wanna graduate big time. Well that’s all for now. Ima take a shower.

Damn well what to say man. My little sister Ruby got alcohol poisoning this Friday [illegible]. And well I got so mad that I hit her and I feel like shit because she didn’t deserve that whatsoever. Hopefully god can forgive. I didn’t hit her just to hit her. I hit her because I felt so bad and mad when I saw my little sister all drunk n all I did was slap her and hit her when she couldn’t defend herself. Well I just feel so bad. And then I called the ambulance because no one wanted to call the cops because they were scared. My mom and my cousin Crystal. Well then I guess she was foaming through her mouth n I was so scared that I mite lose my sister. We may not be close but I think it’s my fault. Because sometimes I leave her alone. But after all this happened I’m trying to be a better sister.

The last time I ever wrote in my journal was when Jesse died. Well after his funeral. And to this day I’m still taking it hard. And he’s been gone for 3 months already. And seems like if it was just yesterday that I was talking to him. I cry for him here and there. Like rite now. Well anyways Raymond got busted and he’s been busted for a month and something days. And I miss him as well. Because regardless wat we’ve been through he was always there 4 me. I go visit him every Saturday and Sunday. And Sunday I go to church with Lisa, his mom. I haven't drank at all really. And that’s good. But two days ago I got caught stealing at Target with my sister and Monica. I deserved it because I was stealing a lot everywhere. And I’m glad this happened because it’s a reality check 4 me. And I’m not ever gonna do it again. And I promise really this time Dear God. Please forgive me. I’ve done many bad things as you already know and hopefully you can forgive me please. I know I’ve done many horrible things but I still believe I can turn my life around.

Damn well where to start. First [of] all its 2011 already. Time flies by quick. Raymond is still busted. If God’s willing he will get out on May 24 of this year. Everything has been fine. But not great. But I can’t complain. At the moment I’m reading Anne Frank The Diary of a Young Girl. It's horrible. The killed. And I don’t know but I just don’t like talking bout the holocaust. It makes me cry. Since I’ve been reading the book which I barely started reading I’ve been trying to put myself in her shoes. In a weird way I think we [are] similar in a way. Only thing is I’m 16 and she was 13. But I’ve been in my journals since I was 11 or 12. So it has been a long time. But besides that I have been going to school this week. I went three days in a row without any hesitation. I love school. I love my teacher. Her name is Mrs. Lowe. She’s the greatest. Because yeah I mean when I go to school it's working on subjects and etc. But with her I can tell her anything and talk to her about anything. [...]

Hey there well I was thinking that maybe I should name my Journal something like Anne Frank did to her diary. She named hers Kitty.[...] Because well I mean when I write in this journal and journals to come I write to god. I tell him about my day. So yeah. But anywho. When I write I write just to write.


Today has been going greater than great. The principal from fullerton high called me and told me to come in with my mom on the 14th of this month so I really think that I might be going to the high school finally. Its been almost 4 years that I haven’t been in a regular school. Well technically since Ive been 13. I hope and pray that she lets me go to Fullerton High. I swear that I will be the most excellent student. Well at least try my bestest to be. I can’t [wait] till I go to the meeting. I cant cant cant wait.

Today Ima babysit but I’m not sure at wat time. Ooh and my mom took my hours to the court. So everything went good. Now I have to wait till my two tresspassing tickets come. And the one for stealing at target. I freaken regret it. I haven’t stolen anything since that day I really haven’t. And the weird part is that I can’t even steal in my dreams. [...]

I can’t believe that I have made it this far. I thank god that I got the chance to go to Fullerton high school. Haha. I don’t know why I’m writing in cursive. This isn’t my school English journal. I guess I just got used to it. I want to finish this journal up. Damn I’ve written in a lot of journals. I just love writing in journals. I love explaining my life to a piece of paper haha. (lol) You get what I mean. This journal started in 2009 and damn it took me awhile to finish it. Literally a year and something. Haha. But all well. So far I have like three journals that I have finished so far. [...]

Journal No. 2: September 24, 2009 – April 10, 2011

Journal No.5
(16 years old)

Today was alright. I did go to school as planned. Yay. So I’m so happy that I went because now I’m catching up on my school work. I’m happy that I am. In English everything is good. I just need to pass my finals. And just keep up on my school work. And on everything else. Omg. I don’t think I’m going to join track because it costs like 140 dollars to join. And I honestly don’t have that type of money. But all well I’m going to see what is going to happen. I want to join track though. I don’t care anymore though so all well. Anyways haha yesterday I was going to go pick up my birth control but I have taken my medical card but they told me that I needed my Caloptima card instead so today that’s what I did. I brought my Caloptima card and yay I managed to get my birth control.

[...] Recently a boy got stabbed to death. A 12-year old got killed by a 18-year old all because of a tagging crew. This is just bullshit. I’m pretty sure I met the little boy before but dang I feel so bad. […] Dear god, what’s going on with all of us. I honestly don’t know. Me, you know that I’m not perfect, but you know what I love but most of all I absolutely fear you. I don’t like doing bad things. I hate to. But sometimes I just do them without even thinking. I really am sorry I hope and pray that Juan, the little boy that was killed, is now with you. And if not take care of him. It’s been awhile since Jesse died. It’s almost been a year. And yet I still haven’t gotten him off my mind. He is still in my prayers. I still haven’t gone to visit him since his funeral. Tell him that I am sorry. But then again also let him know that I still need to know if he is okay. I still don’t even know. I hope you’re okay though. I still remember what was the last thing you told me. “I’ll get that kiss one day” was the last thing that I heard from you to me. He did get that kiss, only thing was, he was already dead. I still remember it all. But I learned how to get over it a bit. [...]

“Can you feel me when I think about you?” that’s a song I like. It’s by Selena Gomez, but dang today so many things happened it’s not even funny, but yeah. But let me start from the beginning. It was a beautiful sunny day and I woke up like around freaken 4:00pm, all late. But I get up so that I can start getting ready to go out. And my sister was getting ready too. So we call up the people to see what was going to crack tonight. Serina tells me come to my pad, I got a 40 oz, so me and ruby go. We were also going to meet up with fucken high heels. We all go inside the pad and start drinking. I got sorta buzzed. We left after to the park. I was going to meet up with Troubles, but when me and Mirella roll up, oh and my sister, we see all the guys, but for some reason we didn’t go with them to kick it, we went straight to the benches. And right away that’s when I see two cops rolling up but as soon as they turned the corner I ran through the [illegible] to tell them that there was cops rolling up. I told Treasure to tell them but that lame ass just sat down with the rest like a stupid ass. But anyways I guess Troubles had a knife with him and they called him up to search him, he just ran. And luckily he got away. That lil kid ran fast as fuck.

It’s been two days exactly that I haven’t smoked shit. And I’m happy about it, really I am, but I kinda do want to do it. I guess I got used to doing it now. But anywho, yesterday was just straight out drama. But let's start off this long ass story from the beginning. It was a beautiful Wednesday and I had just waken up. I look at the clock and it was four in the afternoon. I was like damn. I got my phone and I got all these missed calls and texts.[...]

[...] Time to straighten up, don’t you think. Well that’s it for today. Ima go to sleep.

Journal No. 5: June 6, 2011 – August 26, 2011

Journal No.6

Second day of school today. And it’s okay. I just got back from being at the office. I wanted to change my government class to my second period. But I couldn’t be able to change it because I guess it’s already full. So I just kept it like that because there’s nothing else I can do. My counselor did tell me that I could change weight training to second period and I would be able to come to school later. But I don’t want that because then I’ll get lazy, I know it. So I’ll just suck it up. But I came to my floral class because I don’t want to be outside. It’s really hot. Mrs. Hernandez let me come in. She’s real cool. But I’m going to stop writing for now. I’ll write later on.

Well I just came back from break. Haha. I got high though, it was freaken chill. We got high right here at school by the bench that we kick it at the stairs. But yeah now I’m at [Mr] Cagely’s, and damn I’m hella high and well I’ll write some more later.

Well I’m at home now and today was good. I thought I wasn’t going to be able to make it, but yeah, I did. 

So I’m like real happy that I did because I don’t really like to miss out on things. I’ve been thinking that my schedule and classes are perfect and yeah even though I don’t have a second period class. That time allows me to get other things done so I like that big time. So I’m just going to keep my classes the way they are. I wasn’t feeling all that well today but I did suck it up. In my government class my teacher is real cool. He used to be in the military. He was telling us that it’s a good thing to join the military. So my mind is set on that. I want to join the military. But first I’m going to make sure my mom is well taken care of. Well, that’s still a while for it to happen. [...]

[...] Next semester I want to take culinary. I want to cook. I love cooking. Just like I love writing songs and love writing poems and just plain writing in my journals. This is my sixth journal. Mr. Cagely said that he may start reading our journals. That sort of left me in a bit of a shock because yeah I take my journal writing serious, I write all my personal things on here. So Cagely if you ever read my journal don’t judge me. Okay. Well anyways [...] I went to the library to check out my math book and then the librarian said she liked my vest. I told her that she had just made my day. So after I got my book I went to the career center to print out a couple of things. But I kept on having to blow my nose and all that. Ugh I hate it. Hopefully I get better pretty soon. Dear god help me get better. And I hope that I get my monthly gift, I don’t want to be preggo. Fuck that shit you know. Help me out dear god, like on the real. I bet you're already tired of me screwing up. But I’m only human. So help me out please. Besides all the bullshit I’ve been doing good so far I haven’t been late to any of my classes. I’ve been either the first one there or one of the first ones in the class you know. Oh and I haven’t done crystal meth. I’m honestly glad that I didn’t. I mean that I haven’t. But I got this feeling that I’m still going to do it. And to be honest I miss it. [...]

[...] Dear God take care of all my family and friends and of my dad. I hope I get to meet him soon. I wish I had him here. But all well it is what it is.

Do you see me? Because I feel as if I can see you. Not saying I got eyes on the back of my head. My heart feels when you're coming my way, stops, then energizes me all through my body. Can’t walk though. Seems like if my feet forgotten how to walk. What is it that you do to me? Why is it that my brain goes blank when I see your face? Could it be that love is finding its way toward me? It's knocking at the door but I refuse to let it in. Not scared of love, scared of the pain and lies that comes with it is what I’m scared of. Give it another chance, so you say. Given billion of chances for it is what I’m saying. I can’t lie. I love, love, love being loved, love giving love, love getting love, facts are loving someone is giving your soul, your dreams, your promises, you can love somebody for the rest of your life and never feel the love you’re giving them. So another chance you say, to try again. Well I have all the love I need by me loving me


Well I don’t know where that came from but I like it. I called it loving me. Dear god I wonder if you’ve forgiven me for all the dumb things I’ve done. I hope you did. Because yeah loving myself is all good but I need your love as well. I didn’t go to school. I don’t know, I’m just stupid. My mom bought me and Ruby a laptop. We don’t deserve it though. [...] I told my mom that I’m going to join the army. She didn’tlike the idea at first. But I’m going to do it. I want to hold a gun. And take out anyone that doesn’t seem right to me. It's been a dream of mine for a while already. I want to get out of this place. Be alone, just me and my journals, my memories, my dreams and fantasies, goals. And just turn it all into a reality. Just for me. Because no one else will understand what I’m all about. I still don’t get myself all that good. So what makes me think that any other person will ever get me at all. I don’t care though. It’s just me. And I’m going to die for something important to me. I’m not going to live for just nothing. My name Martha Coral Trujillo will be spoken and remembered of.

[...] Oh how I wish I could just stop smoking dope. Well anywho in English we are learning about king henry and queen Elizabeth I. It’s so interesting I actually want to learn more about it. King Henry had like more than 7 wives or so. But yeah he had a lot. He had two daughters and one son, Edward who became King after King Henry died. But Edward died after being King. He died at 16 years old. That’s so young. Tomorrow we are going to watch a movie. It’s called Elizabeth I. I definitely want to watch that movie. [...]

Finally I went to all my classes today. And yes I went to weight training. But as soon as I got to school I went toward the office to go get my phone. I saw Mr. Harrison. I told him if he took my phone already. He was like, Oh I have it right here because I didn’t know your name. I was like, are you serious? I go to the office with him because he said that we had to go to the office to tell the staff to sign that I got my phone back. So then I go straight to weight training, but I didn’t dress out, but I wrote a note so that they can excuse me for not dressing out. I started writing Raymond a letter but it turned out being a fucken book. It’s 6 pages long but not back and front. Just front because I was using this sharpie to write. I like the letter. I only hope he actually gets it. I’m going to mail it tomorrow. I hope and pray that he gets it. On the serio, I took my damn time on that letter. I even wrote it in cursive. At least he remembered my birthday, right? All my classes went by smoothly. Algebra went by fast. Turned in my HW. And floral went good. I painted my color wheel. I guess a lot of designers use those to determine what color is better. English went also good. I turned in my Elizabeth packet. [...] That movie Elizabeth is hella down. There’s this fine ass guy in it. His name is Robert. Sir Robert, I think. He and Elizabeth love each other, I think. Well, it sure seems like it. And dang the movie is just really good. [...] I didn’t get high off dope today just off weed. Government was chill my teacher Mr. Archy calls me lil lawyer. Haha. I like that. And it got me thinking maybe I can be a lawyer. Just maybe. I like how I looked today. I wore a skirt with a cardigan I looked nice. Cario, I mean Karil (I think that’s how you spell it) told me I looked professional today. And that’s a compliment I really like. Call me professional any day. 

Cagely, stop reading my journal. Haha! Okay haha. And I’m going out and I’m going to drink Gatorade. Haha. I just wrote that so that Cagely, my English teacher, is doing journal checks. Because after all I do write in my journal for fun but it's also because it's half of my grade for English [...]

I have to stop smoking. I can’t even remember the days all good anymore. Damn, that’s hella sad if I do say so myself. But yeah. I fell asleep after I told everyone to come back if they wanted. But I was just too tired, like really. I didn’t go to school, I hid in the bathtub. I’m so dumb, right? Gosh my mom caught me though cuz something feel how I’m so dumb. Everybody is telling me that I’m dumb but what can I do to stop all this. Like really to be honest, this week I don’t really remember on what days some of these things really happened. Today I can’t remember what I did, but fuck it I know I had fun. I didn’t go to school that’s for sure though. Funny shit ay. Do you want to hear it? Well here it goes. Elizabeth is slanging, what a trip, right, and yes I mean Ears who else? haha but yeah she slangs now. She don’t really hook it up but at times she does. She don’t really got all that much so that she can be able to be packing it. So yeah she’s on deck. [...] My mom told me that she sees me much more skinnier. Well that can make two of us because I for one feel much more skinnier. My clothes fits me just right. Not to loose not to tight just perfect like how they should fit, but yeah. That police office that killed Kelly [Thomas] is behind bars and he is sentenced to life pretty much they have him under suicide watch.

“My day today by hood standards many p’s would say it was straight. Now on the flip side, my personal life, that my friends is a completely different story. My personal life sum up in one word is simply “fucked.” I would go in to detail but I got trust issues holding me back” By: Mugsy.

Mugsy wrote this. I just barely read it today. I feel bad because this kid wants love. Well he is looking for it. Because I think he won’t feel loved after his mom passes. Because he had told me that his mother has cancer...

This morning I woke up and dang I felt so dizzy I thought that it was Sunday but I guess it was Monday. So I just went to the kitchen because I was real thirsty and hungry. I didn’t eat anything yesterday. I just slept all day practically. Right after I had put all my stuff away, literally all my things. All my clothes I put in my drawers. My shoes, I still need to separate all my make-up and hygiene. I’m not mad at my mom. Or Ruby. But I don’t want to share any of my things with them any longer and yeah. She wants me to be independent then I will. All the things she feels are partly true. I have been fucking up big time. And I haven’t been able to accept that fact. Now I have. So yesterday I told myself, “Today is the starting of a new picture. I will stop smoking dope, stop bringing people over, stop not going to school, stop all the non-stoppable things I was doing. And so I’m going to hold myself to that. Please forgive me. I know that I have forgotten all about you. I will start new for myself and for you knowing that I’ve hurt the people around me. The one person you gave the opportunity to have me. I to all say I’m deeply just simply sorry. Forgive me for all the dirty uncalled for thoughts that go through my head. I know that I’ve made my bed, but if it's possible to say that I think it doesn’t look quite ready yet, please let me unmake it knowing that I put on the covers straight. Right now dang I have bags under my eyes. Some pants I have fit just right. I loved cooking, but the microwave is the only way I cook any food at all. I know I need to change. And I am. It’s going to be hard because I’m so used to going out and all that but all well, all those nights of being out high without a sound of me being who I once used to be. My floral teacher put on the board: “If we had the chance to change something about anything in the world what would it be” I put on the paper, “To want to change a person yourself or simply just anything you’re going to need to start by changing the main thing that makes everything be what it is set out to be and made to be believed without a doubt being seen. I’ll change what we all so call a world.” I get so into things sometimes that then I start rhyming without knowing it. It’s funny though if you ask me. I didn’t go to school today though I’m stupid yes I know. I’ll go tomorrow for all my classes and that’s on my word.

[...] Today in Cagely class something he said really got to me. He said that it's real hard and it takes someone real strong to not steal or do drugs. And how good can a person be even if say you are alone in a store and no one is there or looking I mean not looking and you can steal a snickers bar and you don’t steal it. He said that’s how real can we be to ourselves when writing in our journal. But I’m always true with myself and especially writing in all my journals that’s a fucken fact.

Why must it be hard for you to see but easy for you to believe when the whole picture is crystal clear yet on the scene with your eyes wide open and still you can’t see the matter of the fact when it’s open for you to see but you’re only believing what your eyes can’t really see but what your own eyes deceive. All in all of this how could it be that it has to turn like this, and yes it’s just a need, take the time look at me stare not at my appearance but into my soul you could believe it’s me. And it is. The hurt inside under my skin is so damn extreme. You mustn’t look with only bare eyes See what you need and take it in and if it’s true and you know it for sure Your heart will let you see me for me Not for the person I made you believe. But you’re not really looking. You never actually ever did


And yet this world just seems to believe and careless to see, this fake apparition of my shadow hiding behind not my body but what really is me that’s what I tried to set out for all and for you to just see, to believe once, you had made yourself think you seen my heart, my soul, my person, you have not. How could you have when you never been there, you were but not as the Raymond I once fell in love with, but forever will my heart, soul and person remain as a blind blurry scene to everyone’s dry eyes, Imperfection I may be and that can be something for you to believe, but how to, how not to be, when my true colors aren’t really showing this human being. Isn’t really me. It’s not all that hard to see. Just hard to believe at least for me. For me, the one person I used to be, Nobody even noticed she had to leave, for reasons out of her reach, one day you and all will see this girl laying cold without a soul anymore; and will see the way it was meant to be, that this girl when alive wasn’t herself for some time. She played it out like a role, read and said lines maybe from a script, but only then will you be able to see with your eyes within your soul, and then your heart will allow u to see the imperfection you thought about me, was not really apart of me, but a part of a missing piece in my life that wasn’t ever and can never be filled in. Needed to find the perfection that had once made my life shine, oh so bright, such in a way a candle light you were able to spot me out in the dark, which was me that was really me, Had a glow to my smile when I smiled, you would look into my eyes and be able to see what you meant to me. Loved you I can honestly say. No other boy had ever made me feel that way. Had butterflies in my stomach when you would just pass on by. I lost myself how could it be, the roads turned these tables got played the fuck out. We are on a one way street on our own, and it sucks to be like this honestly, But you never heard me never actually did you let my words sink in, and you have me feeling now like if I’m in the wrong, and it could be so because now in the mirror a stranger I seem to be, so hurt to see when in reality it’s all me, simply, easily, indeed, when dead I’ll speak and say “was it really hard for you to first see then believe, what was being me, really was a demon that had come out from under my feet. Now my body lays low without a breath in my own, very soul, I didn’t know I had to die away from my own body to release the truth about me. If I would of known I would of taken my own life without a doubt in my mind to just have the satisfaction to find me and my soul. I haven’t felt myself since you had to leave, lies and cries just a fun play, was all you gave to my brain. But I never actually took us like a fucking joke but moving on is what I’ve done and need to do to be able to love someone new but the harsh truth is if you didn’t see all that in me, you didn’t or ever actually loved me.

Journal No. 6: October 13, 2011

[...] I had fun. Me and Ruby went flower picking but this time we came prepared to this damn session I brought some dang scissors. I’m glad too because flower picking is getting pretty dangerous because the people be coming out now telling us not to cut their flowers, that’s real funny huh. But all well too bad. It's all good. I’ll still get my flowers just like I always get my way. My way or get the fuck out of my way. And to top it off the fucken thorns stab my fucken fingers and that shit after awhile hurts ass you know. But yeah that’s why I now carry some scissors at all times now when flower picking

[...] I brought lunch for me and Anahi. It looked so cute though because I took our lunch in a Victoria Secret bag. It was good though because I took us some sandwiches and two Pepsis, one for her, one for me Some ritz crackers. And then she brought us some doughnuts and granola bars. It was so bomb. We have never ate better. Well besides the times we have gotten Angelos. But actually I think our lunch today was way better than any other thing we have ate there this year as 12 graders. Oh well school has been going good. I’ve been completing all my assignments and classwork and say when I do miss a class I will always make up those quizzes. And homework/classwork. I have an appointment with my psychiatrist on Monday because of all the dumb shit that I’ve gone through over the years. My mom always contradicts my every word at times she says you and your sister do not or have never even suffered a little bit. You girls have it all. My response to her allegations is that just because you see suffering only in the way you have suffered doesn’t mean that I haven’t suffered in my own way. A different way from the way you have suffered. And me and my mother will go at it. Since the day I stopped smoking dope I told myself that I would independent with my own things. I have all my things put away. But anyways I like the way I have all my things. I am planning on putting all my stuff away from the things of my moms and sisters. But I haven’t had the time. I went to get high with Robert, Anahi, Eddie, and Luis. It was good. And then I went to Anahi’s pad and we baked two cakes. They were very good. I brought a piece to my mom. I knocked out pretty much 4 the rest of the day. Ugh. I didn’t do my homework.

[...] I’m not going to do much today, maybe just smoke a blunt but that’s about it. And I need to catch up on some homework. And I need to read my book Hamlet. Oh dang I hate this shit. I hate missing school tomorrow. I have an appointment with my doctor for my fucked up “mente,” that’s mind in Spanish. How many times must I try and be myself until someone sees that I had already lost myself. Anywho, I got a lot of homework. And I need to catch up. I need to catch up on some quizzes. Math, English and American government. This shit sucks but I need to stop missing school. I’m going to go to school tomorrow but I’m going to take care of a lot of crap tomorrow like I really do because I got to take my tests. And then go to my appointment. But I hope I can get a note so I can excuse my absences. I’m going to be all sad and then tell her to give me a note for me. I will end up giving it to Mrs. Wilde’s the next day which would be on Tuesday and I need to go to all my fucking classes and go to school all damn week. I know I can do it. I just need to do it. [...] Well I ended up staying home. I didn’t really do much besides that mostly because I had a lot of things to do. Homework and shit like that. So mostly because of school shit. I’ve been thinking a lot lately but I don’t know what to be thinking about it. You want to know something about me I barely found out. It’s pretty funny but here it goes: I’m a drug addict. It may not be with dope now but it sure is with bud. But it’s always with something I’m always doing like what the fuck on the real I clown on people. [...] All well. I’m going to continue to be who the fuck God sent me out to be. And if you don’t like it discontinue yourself from reading this. 

“To Be or not to be And I am”

[...] I wasn’t going to go to school but I ended up actually waking up. And it was okay. Even though I woke up at 7:10 I still managed to get to school on time. I even managed to dress out for weight training and I need to continue dressing out because this fucking semester is almost over, well pretty much its literally over and I need to at least get a D in weight training so I can pass. I’m passing all my classes except weight training. The other day I looked at my grades in my English class and oh my goodness I tripped out because I have a fucking B in that class. Because I have been doing my work classwork and journal, homework, and besides Cagely is a pretty dang chill teacher and he explains everything real good. Because of that I understand everything all assignments, I made up my Act I test. I think I did pretty good in it and I hope I did too. I need to stay on my toes because we almost have our midterms. And fuck, I don’t want to flunk all my tests. So I need to practice and study especially for American Government. Because I’m kinda fucking up in that class. Mostly because the fucking quizzes we take are pretty hard for me. And I always get low scores and that’s what’s fucking me up big time. But its not the quizzes fault. Its obviously all my fault because I should be studying the section we just read so could get at least better scores on them. I just want to be perfect. But that can never be possible because you my God are the only perfect one in the whole world and universe. You know something. Mr. Harrison isn’t a bad teacher. I was just being a bad student. I feel so bad. I went to go take my homework but it was after school and he said that he already put in the grade for the homework. But I told him that its okay, he could mark it late. But he told me just to turn it in on time next time and he gave me credit for it. It was a good day today. Thank you for that I finally understand all my algebra shit. Yay. I love life. My Foolish life.

[...] Today at Cagely’s we had to do a writing prompt about deception and so at first I was sitting there all dumb-founded because it came out of nowhere but then out of nowhere I start writing. You know me once I start writing and I get into it I won’t stop till I’m satisfied with what I have written. So pretty much I wrote a poem about Deception. I hope and pray I get a good grade on it. Because honestly I love writing and one day I hope to publish a book about myself about who I am what I’ve done. About the real me. Anywho hopefully Cagely reads it and likes it. [...]

I went for a run today with Anahi. I fell asleep but luckily I woke up early to go make it for the run. I’m happy that I did too. Because I want to stay in shape you know and so far I still look good. I’ve been losing a lot of weight and in a good way now I’m so proud of myself. I really am. But hopefully my arms get much more bigger well at least more cut. Because on the bottom of my arms they are sort of flabby. And when I move my arms they giggle in a way. Dang and then one of my arms is more cut than the other lol. Haha. I want to get both of them at the same shape you know. But maybe soon I’ll have a beach body lol. Well I’m getting there a lot my friends tell me that my legs are very strong and toned. I love hearing stuff like that because now I’m loosing the weight in a healthy way and I don’t feel guilty about me thinking that I’m loosing weight in a bad way because I’m not I’m clean and I’ve been clean. I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever do that stupid shit again but I just hope and pray that I don’t ever touch that shit ever again. Because I don’t want myself or my family to go through that again. You know. I just want to be a good girl and do normal things that normal people do. I went to the doctors and I told her everything that I have gone through. She seemed so surprised. But I at the beginning of the session of the treatment I told her that I was going to surprise her with all the shit I’ve been through. She didn’t judge me. She just told me that she feels for me you know. And I felt comfortable talking to her about all that. I really did I liked all that a lot. I have to come next Thursday. My Mom’s in a tight spot with money right now. I need to get a fucking job.

My lord you know that I’m really trying in school. I’ve changed my mind about what I want to do in life. I’m going to stay in this fucked up world, in this fucked city. I’m not going to go to the army. I can’t abandon my mother and my sister. I will go after I have them taken care of. Because if I leave from here I’m not only leaving all the stupid bullshit I’m leaving what makes me. My sister and my mother. I took responsibility awhile ago for them and I mustn’t break that quite yet you know what I mean. But yeah. I’m thinking about joining Fullerton College. I really have thought about what I really want to do and that’s be a surgeon. I really want to do that. But besides all that I want to be a mother. Because I need to learn more beyond and beyond. Mr. Cagely said something today about Mr. Hobbs I forgot how exactly it went but I fell in love with those words. But it went something like this: the more I learn the more I don’t know. And then it had another phrase but yeah.

Drug Abuse is Life Abuse

I stayed home today besides the fact that I went to go run with Anahi. It went good. Well we didn’t actually go run today but we did exercise a whole bunch because since the baseball players don’t play on the weekend we went to the Woodcrest stadium and ran up the stairs up and down for about well for exactly 10 minutes. And dang I was hella tired but it was good. We have been working out for quite some time. And its been really effective and I’ve felt so damn good. I feel the best I’ve ever felt before like really. Its not even a lie. I feel so fucking good about myself. I thank god that Raymond got out right on time to be able to open my eyes before it was a little too late. Because it was getting late. But really I thank you so much. I’m going to prove to you that to do good. But of course I’m still going to need your whole absolute help my God. But yeah really thank you for everything thanks for not loosing hope on me. Really thank you. I appreciate it so much I really do. And hopefully one day you can see that I really mean it. But until then I am going to need all the help possible for me and my mom and sister to make it in life. I am going to fill out a application for McDonalds. Please help me to get a job. Because I need to help my mom out really I do. But I don’t know I’m sorta loosing hope. But I’m going to try not to. Because I’m not a quitter. Dang money’s been so tight lately. My poor mother has been stressing out so much that’s why I need to get a job and quick like on the real please help me out dear God. I need your help because no one can help me out right now but you so help me not to give up. Okay. Besides all that I’ve been hoping that my grades go up on Monday. So that’s why I’m going to check them. And I’m going to go to school well to all my classes starting on Monday because I need to get all my credits. Especially for weight training Algebra and English 4 and American Government because next semester I want to go to Fullerton College. I know I’m going to make it that’s why I need all your help. I really am. I’m going to try my hardest to succeed in this fucked up life. I want to be a surgeon. I want to be responsible for people’s life and responsible if I can’t save them. So allow me to live to do all that please do this for me my father. O and I hope I one day be able to see my [illegible] father. I sometimes cry because I wonder if I’ll never see be able to see my father one day with your help. my life depends on you. So have mercy on my soul.

Journal No.12

Our English teacher Mr. Cagely was telling us a few things about how our generation isn’t as original as the other passed generations. It sucks hearing it from such a great teacher like him because I already don’t like my generation and well, I don’t want to be just another lost cause, I want to do something not just be a copycat and copy everything that already exists. That’s some bullshit. [...]

[...] last night my mom and also I was stressing because they don’t want us in our apartment anymore because we have a lot of people I guess but damn that sucks. I really do not want to move. I love where I live, I really do. And they are giving us 60 days to move out and dang dear God please don’t let that happen because I really do not want to move that’s just too much for my mom I fucken swear. Hopefully they let us stay if we pay more rent. And well I need to get a job I honestly really do and well besides that everything is okay.

Slavation lies within

I didn’t go to school today. I felt really horrible because I’ve been going out so much I sorta need to re-up on my damn fucking rest and well that’s all my fault as you already know. No one else’s but mine. I can’t believe that I’m moving out and going to be living with Crystal and all them I honestly think you’re the one doing all this to help me out with getting all my shit together I don’t want to change who I am just because I’m moving I just want to be on task with my life and get everything straight for once. [...] I want to do so many things that I just don’t know how we can or I can be so slow to achieving in them. When I turn 18 I want to go and close down my juvenile record. Just because I don’t want to have a record. And because I honestly don’t think I’ll get caught up with anything stupid. Your always protecting me even when I’m at my worst. You know that butterfly well I always see it; it is always going where I’m going and well it just gets me thinking you know. Like why is this butterfly following or is it just that its butterfly season. But I know that this butterfly isn’t just a butterfly but something else. But what that is I do not know. I like that it follows me though. [...]

It’s Friday and I didn’t go to school. I’m really dumb but I went out to this party at houston it was pretty chill. Everyone was having a good time. Raymond was not there so that was pretty good right and well I didn’t get fucked up I just got really hella stoned but that’s about it. Nothing else went on ~

~ Well I was writing real ugly right here because Cagely was going to check journals and I wasn’t done. And well he still gave me full credit. And I’m happy because of that. Party was chill. Edwin got me Hella stoned. And yeah. I left the party though because Yessica and Mercedes and tiny wanted to get high. And I went but we weren’t really smoking. We just went on this lame cruise. And then we picked up Vivi. I don’t even want to get high with her because I know that it’s going to start a lot of trouble if someone like lil [Illegible] finds out. And yeah. We end up dropping off Tiny like by the eastside and Mercades back at the party. I stayed with Yessica and Vivi and that [illegible]. All boring I was falling asleep and damn it wasn’t even funny. It was a bust cuz they just wanted to smoke like they need to. I need to stop smoking though at least for awhile you know. But yeah. Ricky that one guy I’ve been talking to has been like kinda weird because he sorta trips when I don’t text back. Lol.

I didn’t come to all my classes today again. Damn I hella suck. But dang serious shit. I came to third, fourth and fifth only again. My interview for floral was good. I know I did very well. Because I know I just did. Hopefully this grade for this interview helps my grade go up to a A+ again. Because I want to at least have an A or B in each class that I have before I graduate you know. [...]

I was absent today and ugh. I was going to go but I don’t know why I was being so damn lazy. I need to call little Caeser’s about my application. But no I’ll just call tomorrow. I’m not in such a hurry you know but then again I really am haha I need something to occupy me or maybe just something else besides weed or anything drug related for that matter but yeah I hope everything goes okay. I stayed home pretty much today except when I went to go check out the poster boards at Michael’s they were 4.99 but I knew they were going to be just a little more over $5.00 dollars so no I didn’t get it you know. [...]

I came to all my classes today thank God I was going to get home early but I decided to just stay because I was just getting real happy because I call little Caesars and they tell who is. So I just say this Martha Trujillo can I please talk to Chris. And then they pass the phone to him and He says Hi this is Chris how may I help you. I say I’m just following up with my application and he asks for my name, I repeat it. And he says Oh yes I remember your name I’ll call you tomorrow or the week following up because I still don’t know when I’ll be available for interviews yet but I’ll give you a call tomorrow okay? I said politely okay thanks so much. And we hung up. And I’m just really happy that he even remembered me and my name. He is actually really cute lol. I’m actually really fucking happy that he might give me the job. Which I honestly would really like. Especially since I’m going to graduate pretty soon.

Well I’m now living at [redacted] east Walnut Street Ave Fullerton CA 92832 with all my cousins and my Aunt and Uncle Mom and Sister. Everything is going okay so far and well I got good news. I got the job yesterday at the interview. Thank God I’m so damn happy but I didn’t go to school today unfortunately because I don’t even know I was too tired and still had to fix all my belongings. The room is not that crowded but kinda. But we just have to make it work you know make it all work out. Everything is going so well. But I do miss living at my old house but I’ll get over it so that’s good. I cleaned and made breakfast for Mom, Aunt Crystal and Eman. Then I went to Fullerton High to get my real work permit. Which was awesome and then went for a quick stroll and went to go visit Mrs. Lowe. She was so happy that I went to go visit her. And so was I because that is one of the most greatest teachers I have ever had to be honest. I already started taking the servsafe thingy it’s a requirement to be able to work at any food place. I went out real quick to the hood again on that bike Dulce let me borrow on Friday. So I’m going just keep it and buy it off her. I’m still smoking dope mostly everyday. But like its just weed for me I don’t fein for it though. I still got my shit straight.

I came to school today and to all my classes which is real good right. Today Ima stay home because I have to study for a math test And then I have to do my Food Handler test so I can print it out tomorrow. And I hope I end up working but next week or something. I still need to go to the orientation. Ima call little Caesars today just to tell Chris that I’m done with the test and that I need to just print it out tomorrow. I want him to know that I really want him to know that I really want this job on the real. So that’s the first thing Ima do when I get home then my poster board then clean or something then all my other homework. Ima tell Daniel to hold on to my bike and to not give it to anyone else. Which I know he won’t. I need to kick back on going out because I want to live where I am. I don’t want my Aunt or Uncle to trip on me and then want me and Ruby mom to move. Fuck that. I need to try and kick back even though I love my streets to the Fullest. Well I’ll write more later on. Peace. I stayed home all day today it was really chill but I mostly slept to be recharged for tomorrow you know. But I don’t know if Ima go out because Batt’s sister’s birthday is tomorrow. And yeah. I passed that food handlers test. Ima print it out tomorrow and take it to little Caesars. And hopefully I can start working. I got 300 out of 300 on my July is Deadly Poem. I am so proud of myself. I truly am. My project is coming along real good.

I came late but I made it to all my classes today yay. I am real fucking happy that I did because I needed to take a quiz and I came in time to be able to take the quiz. I’m going to be going to little Caesars today so that I can turn in my Food Handlers certificate and hopefully he tells me to come to the orientation and start working you know. And make some paper lol haha. But first I’m going to call Chris and let him know I’m done with it. Hopefully he doesn’t think that I took too long to finish it you know. Because I do want to work I just need to get all my things to start working like the pants and shoes and apron. I’m going to do it just watch I’m serious. I’m going to finish up my poster board project today. Hopefully so that I can bring it on Wednesday because it is due on Thursday. Mine looks real good and I’m doing everything free hand. No printing out shit haha. Which I think is good.

It’s been a fun ass weekend, but damn I have been getting high a whole lot I’m actually getting tired of all the dumbass shit that goes on with me. Why well that’s something I don’t know. I thank you lord for still keeping me breathing but I know one day pretty soon I’m going to go because no one accepts the Corey I am but me. [...]

It can’t be a much more bad day than a good day. I didn’t go to school. And my mom knows what I did. And now I feel like I have all this weight on my shoulders. It’s still not stopping me though. I’ll still keep trying to be a better me the way I want to be. My mom starts crying and says that it kills her to know what I did. I feel so damn horrible. And I break down too. She thinks it doesn’t even hurt me but it hurts me every day of my life. And well she only knows about one. Not that I had two done. That would just devastate her even more. I’m mad at my Aunt I really am. But idk. Everything is falling apart while I’m trying to reconstruct it. It’s not fair but I’m not in here to play fair. So it’s all good. Dear god you know I hurt and cry. I’m sorry again. Crystal and Lucero got down omg. Crystal has like a black eye. And yeah horrible day it really was. But it’s okay. I’ll be okay. It’s just another day. [...] I need to start on my lyric poem. Because it’s due on the 6 of June or maybe the 7th. I need to turn in my trifold project tomorrow. And excuse my absence. I’ll write more later. Peace.

Its Friday and I guess you can say there’s a lot of things that have been going on lately everything seems to be working out for the best of me and mom and sis it honestly is. I’m happy up to now. I realized that my legs aren’t going to heal if I don’t stop smoking dope. So for this weekend it’s the last it honestly is because I’m already really skinny and then I can’t even be myself at times but I still know what I’m doing. I have a lot of things I need to get done but my ass is just lagging on it. I kick it so much with Butt and Dulce. We all are inseparable. Haha. But yeah today was chill I go out to the hood and well we drink smoke and toke. Just another day. And then I leave and go to Eazy’s. I think for some weird reason I want to get with him [...] I don’t know I feel so weird and confused on how I think of life. I feel that I can do anything I want but all these people around me tell me it’s either you bang or you change. I want to do both things like who is anyone else besides me to tell me what I can or not do. I’m going to make it. All the way. And I’ll still be smoking a blunt. And toking on shit. Just wait and see. I’m going to try and make it legit without anyone spotlight on me. I haven’t gotten any police contacts which is honestly really good. My job thing is going good. My orientation is on Saturday but the next Sat. And I’m going to get paid for just attending. It’s not that I’m stupid its just that I’m crazy. I need to learn on my own. As well as make my own road in this world. I don’t want to be a follower or let anyone else follow me. It’s my world.

Who needs a heart when it can be broken

School was cool I went to all my classes and got a lot of shit done. And Mr. Archy put me off the hold list and then I just need Mr Cagley to take me off the hold list and also Mrs. Valencia my new Algebra teacher has to take me off. I don’t know what happened to Mr. Miller. He hasn’t came and Mrs. V is going to stay with us now till the end of the year which is fine by me. I wanted to get my cap and gown today but I will wait. I’ll make it. I guess I’m not missing any credits for English so that makes me happy. Which means I’ll graduate with more credits. Oh wow so I pretty much made it. I’m staying home this whole week because I want to stay on my toes being focused. I can’t afford to quit now that I’m so close to the end of the Rainbow fuck that it’s my time to shine above the rest of the crowd. I have started my poem thank God. So I just need to organize it a bit more and I’ll be good. I’m doing the lyric one because the sonnet I suck at it. I did horrible. I got a 190 on it. Which is bad. But all well I’ll try my best on this one. I swear I just worry on my Algebra class because I have a D+ on that class. So yeah I’m pretty sure that I will walk that’s just a for sure thing. Dear God thank you I really do appreciate it like I really do. It’s no lie that you have helped me. Even though I have fucked up many times. I love you. Thanks. Don’t ever let me go. I will always try to overcome any obstacle you lay on me. So just know I’m up for the challenges. Just don’t have my heart stopping any time soon. I promise I will change the world. One way but it’s going to be the biggest way ever just you see. My father. Take care of my dad. I will help him out too. I will I love him. I [want] to hug him.

Today I didn’t go to school today but I did go home afterwards the night seemed so long I kept going out of the garage to pop some [illegible] But what’s it called I have all these weird graspy feelings telling me that I should be careful but I love the things and how I do them. I can’t quit. Maybe you can call it me just being lucky or something like that but I have to keep going on with my plans of becoming a surgeon. And being above it all. I have it now but yeah I don’t want to loose it. I didn’t go to school today but well there’s no excuse. I got home like at 1 in the afternoon. I was with Eazy all night long. We don’t do anything though you swear. And besides I love it. I got my period and that was all bad. But I didn’t stain myself thank God you know but yeah. I felt horrible. My legs are getting cleared. Hopefully they do all the way by graduation. I’ve been trying to get my cap and gown but I’m still on the hold list for Cagley and Algebra and not the library book because I turned it in yesterday. I told Cagley if he can remove me from the hold list because I know I won’t be absent and that I’m going to pass his class no doubt. But he sends me away. And then tells me out loud to the whole classroom that I’ve missed so many days and that I still expect him to remove me from the list. For some reason it hurt he judged me. I look up to him. I email him telling him what I felt. Even tho it was only Josh and Kristina in the class, I felt embarrassed as fuck. I tried and it got me this far. He emails back saying sorry and that he really does believe in me. And that he will remove me as soon as our final poem gets graded. It made me cry happy tears.

Going to Write in journals for the rest of my life.

Went to all my classes. Second to last day of school. It feels so strange. And yet so unrare. I worked on my poem last night and it came out being really hella sick. Hopefully I get a good score. Even though I don’t need the credits. I know I want to get the credits for his class because I love being in his class. I’m going to continue writing for the rest of my life. Maybe one day publish a book of my life. I want to be somebody everyone can admire. Someone my little sister can look up to. It’s almost her 16th birthday. My how the time flys. She is trying very hard to go to school and to make it. But she doesn’t want to. For some reason Ruby’s to herself, she don’t explain what she feels but I do know that she needs me. Even though she throws bullshit at me all the time. She enjoys music and music writing, just as much as I do. I’m going to buy her a journal especially for her to write all her thoughts poems and lyrics in. She needs something like that. It’s crazy how a pen and paper can make me feel. I scribble nonsense at times. But dear God you [know] that I do try. My mom already gave me money. 140 I have to buy things for work and a simple dress for graduation. I’m going to make this budget work. Tomorrow’s my last day of school. Oh and I managed with a lot of dedication to get my cap and gown without even having to wait for Cagely to get me off the hold list. He’s someone I’ll come back to visit. No doubt. Going to miss his lectures and the music. Crazy but I’ll always be on time. My writing has improved while being in his class. [...] Wow I made it. I really did. My gown is too big though need to change it.

Second to last day, last journal check but not the last time you’ll hear from me again. Thanks Mr C.

It’s Friday and I’m going to try and have a good weekend. I start work tomorrow and then I go to start work training tomorrow. At the Buena Park orientation. Hopefully I get the hang of it quickly and I have all my paperwork all ready for when I go tomorrow. Well I call little Caesars and Carina answers telling me why didn’t you come in sorta telling me how come you know. But I’m pretty much confused on what she is talking about so then she just hands the phone to Chris and well he just said your fired. But he was only kidding. Carina made it seem like a big ol deal when it wasn’t he had told the lady for orientation to come in today and that way orientation won’t be tomorrow you know. So he said it was cool. And that not to trip on it. To just come on the following Saturday but at the place in Buena park. Which is fine by me. That way I can go out today and not trip on going home early or at all. Ahaha. I went to go buy my shoes and pants for work after school. And then I went to the mall with Crystal, Johnny, and Ruby, and Brenda and the baby. She is so cute. Just like the outfit I had. Lol. It’s all good you know. Chris is real cool with me. And I like that. He said he’s going to have my things ready for when I’m done with orientation. I’m real happy. [...]

Damn well today was the very last day of school and I’ve got my cap and gown and everything has been going pretty good. I’m still going out like crazy. I cant freaken stop. Honestly for some reason I did feel that by moving I was going to kick back. But it’s just made things a lot worse. I’ve lost a lot of weight. There’s really no day that I stay home all the way through. I’m always kicking it with Batt and Dulce but mostly batt. We smoke and drink and toke it. But dang this shit has been real crazy. Tomorrow we got to go early to school to rehearse for our graduation. I’m real excited. I haven’t cried at all. Well just that one time for when Cagley told me how many absences I’ve had n well it hurt so the next day I didn’t go to school and I sent him an email. He apologized. But still. I haven’t cried since and well for some reason I’m still good.

The rehearsal was good me and [illegible] got up early and everything went good. Yesterday Ruby had gotten suspended she honestly doesn’t get it. She thinks that when I tell her shit or tell her what she is doing its working to her advantage. Ruby gets all offense like of I hate her or something which of course that I don’t. And then there’s my mom she’s still believing all this lame crap about me that my Aunt tells her. And also my mom found out about one of my abortions. Yeah I just ended up coming clean as well. I didn’t want to keep lying. It hurt her real bad. It really did. Me and Crystal got the most perfect seats right at the edge. I am so excited. I already got my dress and a blazer that goes with it really well and well my legs are still beat up. And I bought shoes and a pair of kaki pants for work. Which I should be attending the orientation this Sat. Finally right.

OMG it was everything I hoped it’d be. It truly was me and Crystal looked great and dang we left a mark at that school well our class lol there was beach balls being thrown haha wow. But once it was our lines turn to get up and walk up I was real nervous. But happy Cagley got to call our names. When I gave him my name card he quickly told me “you made it Corey” and I said “I know I know Cagley” All happy. But before that while I was still at the house my favorite teacher Mrs. Lowe came by and brought me flowers and a gift and a card. It was so unexpected I was still in my pjs bumping Natedogg lol OMG I screamed Mrs. Lowe she just came real quick and I opened her present and she made me this lei but with money and candy. There was $50 on it. And dang I was real happy. But then again sad because I lost over $60 when I went out I’m real stupid. I know someone came up on them but I ain’t even tripping, you know. The only I lost them was because I got super fucked up. I got wasted. I even threw up.

Is the Party Over

Well damn its been awhile right since my graduation and it feels almost weird writing here on this journal of mine. It still smells like beer. This week a lot of things have happened. Some things of which I aint proud of. But you know that I’ll still grow the balls to write down even though you already know. Its just a low pro way of me agreeing to all the things I’ve done. I’ve been smoking dope so much that it don’t even hit me anymore if I don’t snort it. I love the way it feels when it goes up my nose. And well I was always kicking with Eazy and after awhile he ended up wanting to get some. And my ass gave it up. And dang all bad. We are still cool you know but I stopped talking to him just because he is a kiss and teller. So yeah. And then Tiny we did again. But yeah. And then there’s that one fool brain I used to talk to a lot in the past. Well I don’t know just recently I started kicking it with him a lot. Well here and there. But what’s it called we got with each other and fucked like two weeks ago and also last night. Hopefully I aint pregnant. Because he the only one that I didn’t use a condom with. But yeah. I haven’t found the time to realize how bad its making me look on the real. But what’s it called. I go out everyday. Today I didn’t mostly because I got court and I start working tomorrow finally. It feels good you know. I know that everything I go through is for a reason. But I also didn’t go out because I fucken ate shit like three times yesterday on my Ferrari aka scooter. I was going with yoyo and Ruben to the ampm. And I ate shit twice going over there. How embarrassing. And then the other time right there in front of Batts. A lot of guys are hitting [on] me. And honestly I’m flattered but I don’t like it. I’ve lost a lot of weight but I tell my family its because I always stay active. I can pretty much show off my stomach. And then I think Ruben Rays cousin secretly likes me. Like how I do. Low pro though. I think he is really cute. But yeah. And then Juan Luis Creature’s bro likes me too. As well as Creature. But I haven’t even heard from Creature. I still got his iPod. But yeah my days have been continuous without stopping. I’m tired, fed up and worried and sad. But I swallow all that bullshit up and put on this elementary smile on that everyone seems to love. I’m 17 and I feel like if I already lived a full life. I graduated from high school diploma its real you know its great. And now work. And also today I signed up for college and to Fullerton College to be precise. I’ve done all that and I’m just 17 when I actually feel 30 or something. Fuck. Life on the fast lane it could be a bitch but I love it. Loves blind and Fullerton’s streets got me blindfolded. And my phone has me going crazy just insane. So just in case you didn’t know I’m going to college and major like in biology or chemistry. Because that’s what you need to do in order to be a surgeon. I want this so bad. Just like how I want to be still posted on these streets. But shit. Its going to take all I got to make it in this field. And than I’m still going to need to work to be able to help out my mom. She’s real proud of me. And deep inside that’s all I want. For  her to realize that I do dumb shit but still do shit right. I’m living the best of both worlds all in my life. And I’m going to keep on pushing forward I honestly don’t know if you love me. But you must. Because you’ve kept my head on straight all these years and I wouldn’t love more than to thank you personally but hopefully one day you give that privilege. My father. You know I never had an actual dad and honestly it does suck. I love my dad. I hope I get to see him one day and be able to help him out. I don’t have nay hate towards him. Me and him have so much in common. Well I’m just going by what I think I know but yeah. I hope I’ll be able to meet him before its too late you know. I am my dad. You know I’ve never called him dad. I don’t know the feeling of calling someone dad. That sucks. One day though. When I’m ready. Living here on Walnut Ave is aright it good I like it. It’s still my home away from home though. But yeah. It’s cool living in a house rather than a apartment. I want to get a car and keep on progressing. Sometimes I get all these things in my head of what I want to do when I finish one thing. Like I always tell my fam I’ll do it when I do it. But I’ll always get it done so never doubt me and so far I’ve managed. So today my last day of being unemployed, I’m growing up. Fuck. I wanna cry so bad right now. I know you know it too. The tears are just trying to gush out of my eyelids but I don’t allow it to happen. I just try not show a weakness. I have to stay above all the bullshit. Yesterday I also went with the homeboy Freeks to Long Beach to pick up dope. He’s real cool. He’s 25 but looks hella young but yeah. Ima write some music. I’ll for sure write some more tomorrow after court then work. Wish me luck. I do love you. Raymond is almost out. My true love. “What’s going to happen to me?

Next Chapter 18 :(

I’ve been trying my absolute best to write in my journal at least everyday but its pretty hard now for me either I forget or some shit happens and yeah. But on Thursday 28th the day I had to go to court and start working well everything went good. Court went fine. I didn’t get a fine just community service but I had asked the judge if I could have just pay it off. But he said there’s no easy way out when you do something wrong and he’s right. And yeah we got out pretty early. It was pretty funny because everyone in the group I went with we’re all pretty much from Fullerton. After court me and my mom went to go get one of those bombass sandwiches then we left to go catch the bus. And then out of nowhere I see that butterfly that always follows me. And I know its that one. Because its all black. Well its wings. And then it has this bright yellow that outlines its wings all round. Its so weird and dang all the way to Orange. I don’t know maybe I’m just tripping maybe I’m just crazy. But I don’t care what anyone may think that butterfly is looking over me or trying to tell me something. But its real weird since I moved here to Walnut, I haven’t really seen it. So it has been awhile. So when I did see it, it gave me this happy feeling. It somehow gave me hope. I just don’t understand how my life has come to be. Like not saying I don’t like how it turned out or wait how its turning out. No because you more than everyone know that I love my life to the fullest. But I’m just amazed that I have always been able to overcome any bump in the road. I know I owe it all to you. I know that you a plan for me. A good one. And the one thing that I don’t understand is how you can be so patient with me. Or at least I think you are. But dang you do remember when I said or when I wrote better said, I think it was when I was 13 I said, Dear God please forgive me for all things I’ve done and for all the things I’m still going to do. Thank you that’s all I got to say and whatever you have planned for me. I know that with my hard dedication and with your daily guidance Ima make it to the top. There’s a lot of guys that have a little thing for me. But it’s really weird they are waiting for me to turn 18. Destiny’s Uncle Spider is one. He straight up told me. He was like when you turn 18 and he said he’s gonna hum when I am 18. And then some one fool I’ve been seeing around but that I just met. He also. But I guess he has been asking about me. Just asking who I was n how old. [...]I’m starting to realize that I’m growing up. And the people I’ve kicked it with are as well in their own ways. I’m just sad I really am. I don’t want to be 18. I don’t maybe because there’s a lot of people waiting for me to be 18 either at work or on the streets, the guys family everyone except me. I feel that I’ve been 18 at 13. Dang. I just analyzed it today. After I got off work. Oh and by the way work is really fun. Today is the third day of me working. I’ve gotten the hang of it already. But when yeah when I got off work today I was real tired and I didn’t feel at all like going out. And I just layed in bed and started crying because I don’t want to stop being out there. And I’m just growing up and I’m still wanting to be a kid. 18 shit I don’t want anything on my record. For me it ain’t a joke. I don’t know. I really confused and emotional. I don’t want my lifestyle to change. But then again I have to flip the last couple of pages of Age 17 and start getting familiar with my next chapter. 18. I’m scared, un-ready. Can’t believe I’m saying this but it’s the truth. But I’m staying right alongside my word. I’m going to make all these new priorities work perfectly together and no matter what I’m going to stay true to myself. Never give me more than I can handle please. [...]

Raymond is almost out. Hopefully he doesn’t start shit you know. But yeah it’s now or never. If I want to be that someone to change the world even just in the littlest way. Well I have to start now. Being 18 shouldn’t scare me. Because when I was 11, I wasn’t so why start now. So far I’m real happy. Honestly am. I’m going to put my city on billboards and make it known by me. Corey. Martha. Foolish. It’s on.

Pop Pop Bang Bang

The more and more I think about it I’m getting way too much attention from guys its outrageous to be quite honest its too much. But anywho these last couple of days have been pretty up going . And yes I’m still continuing to use Meth. Which gets me really mad to be honest. But for me now doing dope isn’t a big ol thing. But pretty much to stay sober I need to stay at home. But shit you know how that one goes for me right. Haha. [...]

I love working at little Caesars. I honestly truly do. I enjoy it a whole bunch and even though I’m not going out as I used to (Daily) lol I’m starting to see the big picture of what life well my life should be. And I’m going there. And yeah. But hopefully one day I can find a guy that will forever just be a friend. It’s not impossible. [...]

[...] We smoked a blunt and yeah just talked I saw my butterfly while we were smoking. And yeah he asked me if I’ve been smoking dope and I tell him yes I have [...] But I check my phone and I had a missed call from little Caesar’s so I call back and Chris says that if I can make it in at 1:45 or 2:00. I tell him that I’ll be able to but at 2:00 but yeah I was all shocked that he wanted me in earlier and then my high went away so I get ready in the quickness and then take off I ended up making it at 1:45 like how he had at first wanted it. He was happy that I made it perfectly I’m sure of it. I pretty much know all there is to do for little Caesars. But Chris said that he wanted to teach me register so when he did. First he told me that he doesn’t ever normally teach register to someone as new as me. But that he has seen that I’ve been getting the hang of all the jobs in the store and he likes how I can multi-task and be so enthusiastic about working pretty much he wants to make me a manager but like in a couple of months because I’m still not 18. I was so happy to hear that. And its my 5th day working and he’s already telling me something like that. Well that’s the good news. Bad news is that I fucked up on the register I didn’t punch in how much a lady owed for a pepperoni and cheese pizza. Pretty much she got free pizza. I told Chris and he said not to do it again. And thank god it wasn’t a big order. I love my job though [...]

Well Raymond is now a much more bigger dilemma than before he just bugs me and sticks right by me. [...] we smoke there, chill with Nicholas’ dad telling me how life out here ain’t nothing so you have to be real careful you don’t go up state because that’s where its all about. He was saying as well how he had to kill his own friend because it’s a do or die operation. He was real close to him and well he had to tell his friend that he had to do it. And what got to me the most was that he was so loyal to his gang life that he allowed Nicholas’ father to take his life. Nicholas dad told him not to fight back. So he just got into a little ball and allowed for his life to be taken. He even told the guards that it was his fault while he still remained breathing. That’s fucked up shit. I could only imagine how that guy felt. I picture all this in my head and it stumps me. I can’t believe I’m going to end up saying it. But yeah first let me finish. [...] but fuck it I’ve been seeing my butterfly all day n night long almost like telling me to go home. But I don’t listen. [...] I feel weird and out of place nowadays I don’t crack jokes anymore. I stutter [illegible] and I’m way too skinny. But still looking hella fine you know. But yeah. [...] Didn’t work today and I should get paid today. Hopefully 150 dollars. I earned it though. And had fun. I’ve mastered these streets. I’ve graduated at the top of the class with honors. I’m now forever a gangster a soldier to myself and will be loyal to myself till the world spins no more. This is now the definition of gangster when I think of myself. Everyone’s shady. They all think one another are being shady. And they all talk shit and I was getting like that as well. And that’s why I’ve been do un-me. Yoyo is the one that has told me what’s wrong. But yeah the dope has them all against one another. Fuck all that I’m myself. But I can’t be myself with all that negative energy. It’s all of them against me. [...] I’m sad but not for me but for them. May you watch over them and protect them I’m not I’m just a man Shit I’m shocked I feel so much older I’ve gone through so much that it feels I’ve lived a while life but fuck no. It’s not even the next chapter of my life I’m barely on the second line of my life’s story. Hopefully one day someone can learn from all this I’m writing. Because I’m pouring my heart out every time I grab a pen and write on white canvases. At work everything can be great. I just need to realize what’s more important. [...] And about the dope I’m done. I’m fucking my body up. My soul can never get fucked up. But I need this body to say what I need to do to explain why I was put on this earth. I can’t keep killing my body more each day. I’m quitting But I will do it again. I’m not addicted to it. I just like that it makes me wiser you can think otherwise. But I abuse this drug I use the drug. I am the one that chooses whether to allow the high to overpower me. But I don’t let it. I don’t got drug abuse on my hands. The drugs don’t want to encounter with my hands. Because there’s no effect if I don’t allow it. Mind over matter. It’s a motto I go by. And its beyond most people’s comprehension. But to me my comprehension is past and beyond I’m goin to go out here n there until I turn 18. I can’t have shit on my record after 18. Because of the profession I want and will get. I’ve been realizing all this this whole week that passed. And yesterday when my butterfly lead me home and then said hi to whoever was there. [...] And then finally I got to see the Kelly Thomson video of how they....I cant even say it its making my throat all hard and the tears are trying to burst out . They killed a poor homeless man for a reason that I honestly don’t know but I will find out. They did with this thrill with this amusement. With this un-human motions. I wish I could have been walking by there at that time and place. I would have helped I would have done something. As myself not calling for this so called police department that is supposed to serve the public. Yeah help serve not literally be served the way did all this. To this man that was begging for them to stop. When they would continue they had put their cars in a certain way so that the public wouldn’t see exactly what was happening they had it planned. This is when I realized also that its not the other gangs I hate its these cops these fake people with authority to do what they’d like. Fuck no I’m going to do something about this. It may take a while but I am. Because as with Jesse the ambulance took forever to come get him. He died on the way to the hospital. All these people don’t like the gangs and trying to stop it by letting kids die because they couldn’t the directions correctly. Bullshit. Jesse, Kelly you guys are victims of the system of the media of all these judgmental people society is fucked up. I’m against it. I will avenge the deaths of both of you and to all the people that have died from the piece of shit system that supposedly helps us I’m going to get help. I can’t do it all on my own. Us kids are the future. And we can rise higher than all this. But I won’t forget my goal because I have only one I want out of this and that’s “a world treated to its natural fundamentals no artificial gestures or pleasures a true imaginative tangible world with the laws of reality to our humanity. Love and peace to all that can dream and achieve. Remembering still who we are and where it is that we came from without judging the people even after you meet them. The logics of a free life free of drugs free of violence and evil a world where you can walk naked and feel no shame in it. To know you won’t go hungry if you share. To be able to cry out for help and be heard. To be lost and be found to be unprotected then be attended to be able to be living in your own shadow if it’s the desire yet still be noticed. I know that’s a lot and going to take a lot of work. But you put on here for a reason a big one. I just know it. Help me save the world from also changing to its residents. I can’t help getting this powerful feeling in my brain stem. I’m hungry for people to open their eyes. And see my visions as well to the way I see life. Everyone is greedy. They live for themselves. They don’t really worry about everyone else. Alas because of how society taught us to live. This system is going to crash out there somewhere I know there’s a girl or hundred, thousands, billions maybe that think, feel, and need exactly what it is that I want to kill. [...]

[...] I got my check on Tuesday it was only 46.82 because its my first check [...] And I also need to start doing my community service hours but Ima call Mrs. Lowe tomorrow and tell her that Ima start doing them Monday. And I also haven’t seen my butterfly that sucks. I wanna see her or him. I really do. I feel so alone and scared of all this evil in the world.

It’s a Monday today and a beautiful one at that. I worked all week last week from Monday July 9th to Sunday July 15th. I put in 15 hours that past week which is good. Actually really good. I’ve been working now for 3 weeks and I know how to pretty much do everything like for example the crazy bread, the hot wings, pizzas the dough, the preps for the toppings. Pretty much everything except the register. That there is a bitch. I fuck up on it a lot. Like I’m real slow. But everyone helps me do its not like I’m alone at it. But yeah. Hopefully soon I get ahold of it better with the time that comes. Chris is at times saying good job and keep up the good work there was one occasion where he was almost out. But he just kept telling me really good job and keep doing what I was doing and I just feel so good when they tell me things like that. So all this was in the same day. And then I was on landing which means that I was putting pizzas out of the oven into the pizza boxes. I love doing the landing so I was putting the pizzas away into the hot n ready for the customers and Chris says “you impress me” and I honestly didn’t even know what to say because one I was shocked and second I was really busy with the pizzas so I just said humbly really how though and he says because you do more than some of the people that have been working longer and you’ve only been here like two three weeks. Keep it up. I then just kept working but replied to Chris saying well thanks Chris really I’m glad I do my job well. Then he says yes you do and I honestly can’t wait for you to turn 18 so that I can start training you to be an assistant manager. Yeah I was like straight blushing because he wasn’t just telling me personally. There was other people there and I’m pretty sure they had heard but I don’t really care if they did. But yeah. Pretty much to keep up the good work and then he walked away. But I thanked him repeatedly. I had a big ol smile on my face straight out. I love my job. I really honestly do. And then to top it all off I got my bank account for chase already it was cool I liked it. It feels like each day I’m taking a step closer into being a more productive and organized young adult. I still don’t want to be 18. Brain and some girl named Michaela always also giving me good feedback. Michela was giving me little lessons on how to do register and I got the hang of it fairly well. I like her she’s real cool. Brain also he tells how long have you been working and I say three weeks and he puts on this face of amazement. He said to me that “you may not notice but us managers keep eyes on everything and you’ve been working really well in this short period of time. Just keep it up and maybe you’ll get promoted. I just love hearing all this and that. I really do. Michaela says I’m one of her quick ones right now. I love working. My next paycheck should be a lot bigger. I got a debit card so that I can buy with a chase card that’s so sick. I’m real happy at where I’m at. I haven’t really been out. But that’s all good. [...]

[...] please help me dear God please help me help myself while I try to accomplish all these things at the same time I’m going to do it. Just guide me. I know that I still do things you’d rather me not. Let me just apologize. I’m really sorry I have no damn excuse I’m lying to everyone that I’m not doing anything when in actuality I’m doing it all. Dear God there’s some things I can’t explain for myself so therefore I can’t explain them to you or to anyone else. So I’m just keeping it a secret. You made me though and you do know what’s so hard for me to explain. You created me. For what I do not know. And maybe I’ll never ever know the true reason why you put me where I’ve been where I am where I’m heading. But like how I’ve said before I put my life in your hands. And so far you’ve held on to me. So I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Don’t ever lose hope in me. Remember you made me in your image and I’m always going to pull through. Give me the chance and life to help the world. There’s so many things that I’m scared of. Things that just make me cry with fear. I don’t know exactly how this world was before but right now its just insane. I don’t know how people can kill people for nothing at all. There’s so many times where I put my life at risk. But for some reason I always feel safe. I feel this power, this force field around me that prevents anyone from hurting me. I’m only 17 but one day I’m going to be writing when I’m 40 and so on. I don’t want to be old. When I was 13 I didn’t know what I was saying when I wished I was older already. I want to stay young but then again I want to experience the steps of life. I want to see how far I can thrive and how many people I can touch. I honestly don’t see myself getting married anymore or for that matter having any kids. Its weird but I feel like if the abortions I had had to happen like if it was the destiny. But no that couldn’t be right that was my fault. My fault. Still though I get the feeling that you put me here on a mission that mission I still need to find out. But anyways Ruby has a tattoo now. It’s nice. It’s five birds. And she explained to me why she got birds and what they represent to her. I guess she got birds because when we were smaller but of course I was still older I would leave Ruby at home alone while I was out being stupid. I felt so bad when she told me just didn’t show it. And well she said to me that while I was out she would at times cry and just stare out the window and watch the birds. It made sense after she had explained and it also put a knot in my throat. Because it made me remember the times the many times I would leave her alone. Me and her were so close as little girls. I left her. Its something that I shouldn’t of done. That’s why we are how we are today. But I love that girl I love my sister. She said that she got five birds because each one symbolizes someone, my mom, the virgin Mary, my dad, you (God), and I got shocked when she said (ME). But it made me realize that she has forgiven me. I’m so happy that she is. Because that also keeps me motivated. My mother has been through so much. I wish I was able to tell her all the things I’ve gone through. But I know that will never happen. I found refuge here in these journals. Here in this pen. I speak of all the events in my life good and bad. Without hearing any harsh remarks. There is much I want to write...I should be starting college this fall August 28th. I must start right away no delaying my future cannot be on hold. I still need to verify a couple of things but I’ll be a Fullerton college student this year. But serious business I need to start my community service. I haven’t even called Mrs. Lowe. I’ve been slacking off on that one. But tomorrow since it’s Monday Ima give her a call. Hopefully she ain’t mad. Today was a good day overall. I haven’t heard from Ray since earlier when his mom brought him to pick up some weed. It’s okay as long as he is doing well. Watch over him my little butterfly he’s a good kid. Just lost confused and unhappy. I haven’t seen my butterfly well that’s all for this . I’ll try to stay up to date with my writing. “I was created for greatness even with my deadly intelligence my imagination will be the future generation” Plz...lord let Jesse know I still think of him.


I’m honestly just speechless. Where should I even start from because it feels like there’s no finish line to this war. There’s hell on earth. In just these couple of years that have gone by so many deaths and not enough living. I must not allow it to overwhelm my mind. But at the same time I have to do something. Jesse’s anniversary is coming up. And I have this knot in the inside of my stomach like: somethings going to happen on that day, on that night. The killing of Kelly Thomas and that guy that ate some guy’s face because of some new drug called Cloud 9, he’s as well dead, killed by cops. The guy well the victim is alive but won’t ever look the same. And just recently a shooting in Colorado at a movie theater for the primer of the batman movie. This insane beast (man) dresses up as batman and goes inside the movie theater where the movie was being watched by lots of people and he just starts shooting with no feeling. He killed 12 people young and old. Even shot a infant. A baby. And then also the killing of the guy from Buena Park the one with the guy that killed Jesse. But cops killed him. Then there’s a kid (black) well teen shot by a cop because he thought he was reaching for a gun when it was only his phone. And then there’s the most recent and the most closest. The shooting in Anaheim. Cops killed a guy from Anaheim Thumper was his name. Cops shot him because him and two other guys ran from them I know that its like they all say if you have nothing to hide then why run. But even I run if I see them coming well depending you know on whatever situation I may be in. But what if they shot me. Cops nowadays just aren’t what they are meant to really be. Maybe they’ve never been. They like to be dicks about everything. That’s why we run. This is bullshit it honestly is. I’m sorta no I’m really scared. And I don’t know….I’m out of fucken words. They killed one of the two that ran away with that guy thumper. The cops are doing shameless things to the public they are suppose to serve.

July is dropping caskets. The knot in my insides are getting more and more intense. It’s already 11:30 pm of the day July 25th 2012 and there’s been constantly sirens of the cops day in and day out. Something is happening something is bothering something has to be done something I don’t wan to care about. This something is making me go insane. There’s big lights in the sky. Helicopters.

I have learned the elementary things sad but true.

Lets fully escape the time and forget forever. Lets finally be the greatest source together. The concept of being patient giving our wounds the time to heal and bind. I bet if only we tried the world will once again shine reell and bright. An eye of mine seems a bit blind. No need to hide got my share of pride. it’s time to go after mine. Maybe thats just the whole right side of my mind tick tock its showtime. [...]

Conquer the World

Living can be difficult. Struggles with dreams can’t mix you know. Still running from all this stress you know. Even if I have to walk home in the middle of the night you know. Tired of how all these twisted turns have thorns. No warning signs for a trench up ahead of the road. Going and going so fast now just hopping better than a toad. Wanted a vacation to a destination that calls for a different attire. This bic just went out fuck need some fire need to get higher fuck getting wired I just get tired. And lighter. I’m Foolish and I am a fighter. Thinking of how many delightful things require this world to spin. My fists automatically grow tighter. Bitter but sweet in a life so different, legit. That’s why I’m always last to sit.

Alberto Lule

Alberto Lule uses readymades, mixed media installations, video, performance, and
tools used by agencies of authority to examine and critique the prison industrial
complex in the United States, particularly the California carceral state. Using his
own experiences, he aims to tie the prison industrial complex to other American
political issues such as immigration, homelessness, drug addiction, and mental
health. Lule creates artworks that explore institutional roles as gatekeepers of
knowledge, authorities of culture, administrators of discipline, and executors of
punishment. He is the recipient of the Public Impact Fellowship, Claire Trevor
School of the Arts, UC Irvine, 2022-2023. The 2020 Kay Nielsen Memorial
Drawing Award, The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles. Alberto received a BA in Art
from The University of California Los Angeles, and is currently pursuing his MFA
from the Claire Trevor School of the Arts at UC Irvine.

Cassandra Flores

Hello! My name is Cassandra Flores and I was raised in South El Monte after my parents’ immigrated from Nayarit, México to East LA. I spent my summers in high school exploring politics and multicultural literature. This is where I began to dissect my own cultural identity through the works of writers like Gloria Anzaldúa and Oscar Zeta Acosta. I find power in vulnerability and confrontation in all types of writing, including music. The lyricism of artists such as Clairo, Natalia Lafourcade, and Lorde foster an intimacy I hope to capture in my own writing. Things that bring me joy include my cat, Kiwi, dancing, concerts, and crafts that stimulate my creativity! As a student at UC Irvine, I study Social Policy and Public Service and I’ve been dancing with Ballet Folklorico de UCI for two years. My favorite poet at the moment is Yesika Salgado. I resonate with her experiences, the bilingualism in her writing, and aim to one day publish my own poetry book.

Tatyana Hazelwood

Tatyana grew up as a low-income, first-gen, African-American, Panamanian and Mexican student in both Orange County and San Diego, CA. She works as a System-Impacted Peer Mentor and an intern for the LIFTED Program. At UC Irvine, she is a Psychological Science (B.A.) and Criminology, Law & Society (B.A.) double major. Being a system-impacted student herself, she had a difficult upbringing and strives to find healing through success in education to end generational sacrifices. She began writing personal poems in her creative writing course in high school but often felt restricted to the conventional rules of poetry. Her works shared in Issue 4 are her most personal and meaningful poems.

Janellee Hernandez

Hello! My name is Janellee and I am a first-generation college student who was raised in a Guatemalan household. I have always loved how art has been a medium (in any form) that allows people to say something without actually speaking. Whether it’s to communicate a deeper meaning or is just there to simply exist. Photography has been something that I have always enjoyed and found that it is my way of self expression.

John Dayot

John Silvan Dayot is a rising senior at UCI studying English. He recently became an alumni of the award-winning nonprofit program Ghetto Film School (GFS). With a background in film, John wants to grow as a storyteller and develop projects with his community of talented friends. He believes art is always growing and is currently inspired by visual arts and capturing real life/people.

Daniel Le

Daniel Le is a third year student studying psychology with a minor in digital arts. Originally from Cerritos, CA, he enjoys exploring new things with friends, making spotify playlists, getting tattoos, and immersing himself in his Vietnamese culture.

Dontaye Henderson

Dontaye Henderson was raised in Atlanta Georgia and now resides in San Diego, California. He attends UCI studying to earn his BA degree in Sociology. His inspiration comes from his children and loving mother. He desires to use his education to help aid the struggling youth in society as a mentor. He enjoys writing poetry, reading, drawing, and cooking. He is grateful for this opportunity with furthering his education with UCI and plans to be the best version of himself towards everyone he meets.

Victor Lopez

My name is Victor Lopez. I am an incarcerated student at Richard J. Donovan State Prison. Serving a life sentence does not give a father much room to be a positive role model. Educating myself to motivate my daughter Arriana was the best that I could do. My past actions does not define who I am, with or without my freedom, I will contrive to be a better man.

Martha Trujillo

Martha Coral Trujillo is a 28-year-old currently attending Fullerton College to obtain a Paralegal Certificate after having completed a Master's Degree in Criminology, Law and Society. Martha's goal is to become a Criminal Lawyer and to continue to work with supporting youth at risk. Martha continues to write in journals and is currently working on Journal 33. Martha's passion for assisting and serving underrepresented youth has been the motivation for her to continue to reach higher and do more in the Justice System.

Patrick Acuña

Patrick was born in San Gabriel, California but was raised by the carceral system. After three decades of incarceration, he is the first member of UCI’s LIFTED (Leveraging Inspiring Futures Through Educational Degrees) to transition to campus as a first-generation senior with an emphasis in Psychological Science and Criminology, Law, and Society. When Patrick isn’t on campus, he volunteers with Guide Dogs of America where he trains dogs for children on the autism spectrum and veterans managing PTSD and/or overcoming combat related mobility impairment. His other passions include backcountry hiking, working out, and traveling. He’s recently returned from a 30-day cross country road trip where he slept on the sidewalk of New York’s Time Square, a back-alley doorway in DC, and the parking lot of a Las Vegas Cracker Barrel.

Yuzhou Michael Ju

Yuzhou Michael Ju, a second-year Sociology major at UCI, is an international student who was born and raised in Chongqing, China. He completed his entire K-12 education in China before coming to the U.S. for college. Yuzhou is particularly interested in immigration studies, with a focus on Chinese Americans. Whenever he visits a Chinatown, he feels curious about the people there: what motivates them to move to a distant place, and how do they establish new homes in an unfamiliar country? First-generation immigrants, in particular, must have made significant commitments to their entire families in order to support the future of their offspring. In his free time, Yuzhou dedicates most of his time to volunteering as a tour guide at art exhibitions or historical relics museums in Chongqing. He guides visitors through exhibitions showcasing Dunhuang Buddhist murals and shares the history of Chongqing's role as the War Capital of China during WWII.

Feliz Aguilar

Feliz is a disabled, non-binary, first-generation, Latinx creator proudly hailing from the East Side of Salinas, CA. They recently graduated from UC Irvine in June 2023, double majoring in Literary Journalism and International Studies. Their passion for learning and experiences as a first-generation student inspired them to question the accessibility of post-undergraduate higher education, leading to the piece featured in this issue. The people fighting injustice around the world are their greatest inspiration, and they hope to continue standing in solidarity with those resisting oppression globally — whether in writing or on the ground.

Helena San Roque

My name is Helena San Roque. I’m a third year Literary Journalism major at UCI. I wrote my piece “Azat Artsakh, Free Us All'' as a nod to my Armenian heritage. However, it’s more than that— it wasn’t until college that I learned about the broad anti-imperialist struggle across various nations in Latin America, Palestine, Armenia, the Philippines, India, etc… In this piece, I talk about Armenia and Palestine: in 2020 the Artsakh war broke out after a decades long armistice between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Israel, which has committed grave atrocities against Palestine, continued to support Azerbaijan in their unjust war against Armenia, resulting in capturing Armenian territory in a trial of human rights abuses. But when your father’s homeland is attacked, what can I, an “American” college student, do? For me, to truly help emancipate my people, the answer was to get educated and organize.

Guadalupe Parra

Guadalupe is a first-generation student majoring in History with the goal of becoming a teacher. She was born in a tiny town in Jalisco, Mexico, and moved to the US with her parents when she was three. She grew up in the San Fernando Valley, surrounded by Mexican culture, and uses that as inspiration in her poetry.

Mariah Rosario

My name is Mariah Rosario and I am a UCI 2022 graduate and alumni. The following portfolio I submitted is my college senior thesis I submitted for my final. It depicts my story of self-emancipation and finding myself through independence and trauma.

Makyla McLeod

Makyla is a Black, first-generation student born and raised in North Carolina. She is currently entering her 3rd year in undergrad with a double major in International Studies and Literary Journalism. As the author of "I Educate", Makyla looked to voice not only her personal experience as the oldest child in a southern Black household looking to further her education, but to also pay homage and express gratitude to the village that continues to help her get there. In her free time, besides writing, she enjoys listening to music, reading, playing video games, and watching horror movies.

Serenity Thu Ritchey

Serenity is a third-year English major from Garden Grove, CA. She has a soft spot for poetry, among other things, like honeycombs, and the color green. She thinks words are pretty sweet and wants to believe in them. (Sometimes she does).

Josie Bitnes

Originally from Washington, Josie is a second year criminology, law, and society major seeking a literary journalism minor. She plans on attending law school to become a criminal defense attorney. In her free time, she skis with UCI’s Ski and Snowboard club and enjoys playing guitar, reading, and being outside in nature.

Corbin Li

Corbin is a first-generation college student studying Civil Engineering at UC Irvine. Growing up in California, they fell in love alongside Pacific air, late night guitar, and bonfires at the beach. Corbin’s passions lie in the intersection between engineering, art, and society, and they look forward to further exploring these topics in future years.

Erik Perez

First and foremost my name is Erik Perez and I am 20 years young. I am an artistic expressionist and Chicano artist. I’m from Southern California where we dream big and plant seeds for the world to flourish.

Francisco Vazquez

My name is Francisco Vazquez and I am 20 years old from the city of Santa Ana–that’s the place I call home. I’ve been in and out of the Orange County Juvenile Hall since the age of 14. I’m on my way to prison and I’m in a different mindset than the one I had 2 years ago when I first got here. In here I like to read, draw, and work out. I got a hidden talent which is to sing and I would like to pursue that upon release. I attend college here and I try to be a role model for my peers. In the future I hope to give back to my community, which I used to terrorize at some point.

Helen Barahona

Helen Barahona recently graduated from the University of California, Irvine (‘23). She double-majored in Political Science (Honors) & Sociology and over the summer she interned in DC with the Shadow Topics team as a research intern at the Political Violence Lab. Prior to working with the lab she served as a student assistant at the UCI Basic Needs Center, and as the managing editor for LUCID through the Dream Project Fellowship. During her free-time she likes to read, write, paint, rate movies on letterboxd and go bike-riding!

Jaaziel de la Luz

I am from Veracruz, Mexico and currently a second year math PhD student at UCI. I enjoy writing, reading philosophy, skateboarding, learning languages, traveling, hiking, jogging, sketching, and doing research. I am passionate about community building and exploring the world.

Juan Jimenez

My name is juan jimenez. 
I’ve been incarcerated for 
just about 5 yrs. In the 
midst of this quest, I’ve 
developed a hobby!
             I’m a writer 
from the ghetto! Don’t you 
disregard my message . . .
Told them all that made me 
feel like I was less than: 
             Here’s a little bout my story. Not a boy. I know 
             I’m destined

Pablo Ramirez

My name is Pablo. They also call me Pablito. At this moment Im placed in JH. In here I’ve learned many things about myself and my surroundings. I’ve learned how the brain works and how trauma affects your thinking. Right now I’m going to high school at the moment. Ima graduate in December. Im excited because I want to go to college. I used to be wild. I didn’t care about life Itself. All I cared about was putting in work for my hood and shit like that. that was me out there. In here Im more calm kick back. I’m changing. This change Im doing is mostly for my family. They need me out there to support them emotionally and financially. I [used to be] the man of the house. At a young age I would work hard and pay my jefa for rent. [My mom] would struggle and that bummed me out, but there were also times where I shit where I slept. Now Im focused on getting my education and learning new stuff every day. Im more open minded. When I get out me voy a poner las pellas to work hard to buy a house for my lil family. I want to be a welder. I wanna learn the art of welding. Im a hands on person. Im thankful for everything I’ve been through. It taught me a lot.

Samog-J Lemon

I am a current student at Irvine Valley College and I'm majoring in communicative disorders. I was born in Anaheim. I love spending time with family and friends; as I got older I realized how important that was. I am a Christian and go to church with my great grandma every Sunday. I like to write poems on the beach; it’s my new way of clearing my mind. I actually do write now to clear my head, something I would’ve never knew I liked but I find therapeutic.

Allan Plata

Born in City of Orange, Ca., my family and I have moved from room to room. Eventually my mother was able to afford an apartment of her own. I always lived in rural areas in the same city then eventually I would get involved with the people in my environment. Father was in and out the picture due to negative habits and mother was either busy or would put her priorities before her own children. My sister was a second mother and also a friend that would try to guide me to do better things for myself, though I was stubborn and didn’t want to listen to what others had to say.

Rachael Collins

Rachael has been an educator and teacher of writing in the California Community College system and at UCI since 2005. A proud homeschooled student, CCC transfer and UC graduate twice over with a PhD in early modern poetry, Rachael is committed to curriculum design that focuses on providing high quality, innovative, and democratically-centered writing instruction to disadvantaged learners, including those who are limited to online learning environments. Drawing upon the multidisciplinary, multimedia work published in Lucid, Rachael's courses focus on the transformative potential of personal writing in higher education. She thinks that when students are given the space and the tools to express themselves, they write beautifully.

Ryan "Flaco" Rising

Ryan Flaco Rising, West Coast Credible Messengers Director and PhD candidate in Criminology Law and Society at the University of California, Irvine, leverages his personal experience as a formerly incarcerated individual to assist others transitioning into higher education at UCI. His research focuses on creating pathways for formerly incarcerated individuals in higher education and analyzing the evolution of related programs. Ryan's advocacy, including founding the Gaucho Underground Scholars Program at the University of California, Santa Barbara, has played a pivotal role in expanding similar programs across UC campuses. He has received prestigious awards for his work and authored pieces in various publications, showcasing the power of formerly incarcerated individuals in producing innovative solutions and sustainable pathways for their communities, encapsulated in his 'Organic Leadership' theory.

Lisandra Rising

Lisandra is an Undergraduate at the University of California, Irvine majoring in Social Policy and Public Service with a focus on Education. Lisandra serves as the Recruitment Coordinator for the Underground Scholars program at UCI. She is also part of a blended family and lives with her son and daughter who are both 14.

Mia Voloshin

Mia is a Freshman at University High and plays indoor volleyball. On her free time, she enjoys being with her friends, shopping, and going to the beach. She eventually wants to pursue college courses before and after she graduates high school.

Riley Rising

Riley is originally from Montana and moved to CA last year in eighth grade. He is now a Freshman at University High and is involved with jiu jitsu and wrestling at his high school. Riley enjoys skateboarding and free-styling on his free time. He wants to join the marines after he graduates.

Pedro Nieves

Pedro Nieves is a UCI alumni who graduated with a Bachelor's degree in the Arts. Born in Puebla Mexico, he immigrated to the U.S. at 2 years old. After getting involved with the Dream Center and Underground Scholars Initiative, he’s now passionate about advocating for underrepresented communities by using his photography and video production skills. He hopes to become a skilled photographer and creative and looks forward to applying to graduate school to further hone his artistic abilities and create a name for himself in the art world.