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Grade 11
Narrative
Writing

I Cannot Be Defined

Alexis G., Novato, CA

Alexis Grusby (she/her/hers) is a junior at Novato High School in California. She loves writing and has dreams of pursuing some form of art in her life. She dedicates all her work to her dog, Scout, and is extremely thankful for her family and friends.

I cannot be defined as one place, one clear image in your mind.

I am an entire ecosystem, connected with roads of veins and paths of blood.

My head is a churning ocean, the most treacherous part of this planet. Sometimes it is beautiful and sunny, when I am calm. The tide is low and seashells of unreal colors speckle the shore. When nostalgia strikes, children play in the calm waves that lap at their toes, making them giggle. Sometimes the sky grows dark and the ground shakes. The waves grow larger than life and I lose control. Rain pours from the sky, a brilliant storm that causes fear in the hearts of anyone that dares to come near.

There are many roads you can take to lead you away from the sea, depending on where you’d like to go. If you want to visit my heart, it is possible, but a difficult journey. The path is overgrown and dangerous, but once you arrive, you won’t regret it. A luscious garden awaits you, and only you. It’s a perfect place to spend eternity in, with a bench that is perfectly comfortable. You could sit on this bench for hours, staring at the otherworldly landscape. Flowers climb up trees that are the perfect height for a treehouse. A small waterfall burbles and beckons you to touch the water, a silent greeting. It is serene here. Everything is just as you wanted.

If you decide to venture past the garden (though not many do) you may decide to visit the small town etched upon my hands. There is an art studio located on my left hand. It is messy, and unfinished paintings litter the walls. Dirty paintbrushes fill the sink, and I really must remember to wash them. Next door to the art studio, there is a bakery. The sweets created inside are wonderful and tempting, but it is only open once a week, so you must get in line soon. If you take the bridge over to my right hand, more shops await you, each one built to encompass my hobbies.

Past my hands are the rolling hills of my stomach. These hills change shapes every so often, depending on how happy I am with my body image. Sometimes, when I am happiest, they are beautiful and picturesque, a colorful sunset perpetually falling over them. When I feel bad, they are steep, and rocks tumble down their sides, threatening anyone who tries to reach the top. When cramps threaten, they rumble with an earthquake, and the trees shake.

There are many other small places to visit among the busy world of me. You may like to visit my ears, where there is a park, and it always has a band playing, with a small cup in front of them that you can’t help but toss a dollar into. My legs are a forest, with bike paths running through them, and lakes that have the perfect conditions for swimming.

This world is treasured, and despite the ups and downs it faces, it remains my safe haven. I will always be able to come home here, because it was built for me. And it is perfect.

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