October 27, 2007
By Amber Wozniak, Hawthorne, NJ

Seeping forward, Stress gnaws and claws at my head.
A constant buzz of a million concerns,
This masked figure demands every ounce of attention.
Yet I resist,
Shoving him farther back into the concealed corridors of my brain.
However, instead of dissipating among the hall of lost hopes and forgotten fears,
He condenses, re-groups, and grows all the stronger.
Angered, Stress crawls forward,
Sadistically knocking down dreams and jovial thoughts.
Behind him, he drags a bag of beads,
Each a gloomy shade of rose-colored cares,
And the “what-ifs” that come with those concerns that are never far behind.
They start out simple and small,
But begin to string around my inner thoughts,
Affecting everything I do.
I scream out in frustration and rage.
Until there is nothing to do but cry.
And as I weep Stress out of head, I finally glance at his face.
Each tear is a tiny gemstone mirror,
And it is my own paralleled features that intently gaze back at me

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