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"The Hooverville Blues" by Jackson Ranger '19

"Stand by Me" by Robby Huang '18

"Stand by Me" by Robby Huang '18   

      People love to treat their favorite plants like vulnerable children; it seems as though only under such meticulous care, the plants can flourish. This was my presumption until I met an unknown friend standing by my window who protested against such an assumption.
      On a burning hot afternoon, I first met him. I was weeding the garden by my window, with the pleasure of picking the inferior species out of the graceful roses surrounded by a concrete flowerbed. Suddenly, a green shoot growing in the zigzag crack of the flowerbed caught my attention. The tiny shoot had been pushing aside the stubborn concrete with a delicate body. Somehow, my hand paused right before it stained the innocent leaves. He looked different, like a floating green flame. With respect, I decided to leave it to die gradually in the concrete.
      A month later, we met again. He waved at me through the moist window in a mild rain. I was shocked for a second, just like people usually are when they do not recognize an old friend after being apart for a long time. He already showed a masculine appearance: the two pieces of leaves grew into a sturdy skeleton and the tender skin became coarse covered by bushy hairs. With surprise and excitement, I rushed out to greet him. He grew so tall that it was not easy to distinguish him from the rose bushes without flowers. I carefully studied him: the roots extended deep into the crack, which was pushed much wider than last time, and crept along the rough concrete until it dipped into a depression full of rain.
      I went back to my room and could not help glancing at my admirable friend. How many times in our lives do we retreat since no one has faith in ourselves? Do we bow down our heads because where we come from? Do we choose to hide in the crack instead of searching for a spot of light?
      Standing by my window, my friend always kindles the flame in my mind.

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