If I

by Ayannah Garcia

When you finally go back to your old hometown, you find it wasn’t 

the old home you missed but your childhood.”  —Sam Ewing

If I had stayed in my old house would everything be different? 

Would I be sleeping next to the same vent

Would all my time still be spent in the lovely, finished basement

If I stayed would my life be different in the present? 

In the past, I wanted to be a vet

Caring for all different types of pets 

Then I started looking into becoming a Rockette 

Now, all I want to be is an actor on-screen playing Roulette    

If I had chosen to do something different, what would it be–

Would I now be an actor that makes a guest appearance on ABC?

Or would I still be at home drinking peach tea?

I think about it always, especially when a see a reflection of me

Fantasizing about it makes me want it more

A tangible thing to work towards

Building that life even though I am a sophomore 

That always will be with me in my core

If I only did that one thing differently and the effect took place

Maybe I would have already finished the race,

The one where my accomplishments are already in my living space

And everything is splendid so there is no need to pace

Somehow I feel like I have time 

But there is this sinking feeling it will never be mine

It might be if I follow a certain line

I think about it all throughout the night.

About Ayannah Garcia

Ayannah Garcia is a freshman attending Richwoods High School, where she takes part in the Pre-IB program, the Royalettes dance team, and the drama club. Outside of school, she loves to dance, read, journal, travel with family, and play with her dog. In addition to these activities, she is currently a member of the Finale Group of the Greater Peoria Illinois Chapter of Jack and Jill, an organization for young African American individuals who want to serve the community, and a member of her church’s youth group.

Art by Ellie Kraemer

Ellie Kraemer is a sophomore and an animation major at Bradley University who lives and breathes her artwork. Becoming a professional artist and animator has been a goal of hers for many years, as various works of digital art and experience have held a pivotal role in her life. Intrigued by the diverse storytelling prowess of interactive media, she aims to get involved in the productions of visuals for video games and animated series after graduation. You can find more of her work at ekraemer.myportfolio.com.