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Christobelle R. '24 – Loved by Herself: A Series of Poems

The inspiration: Being a teenage girl in today's world is very challenging. The ever-influential force that is known as social media makes it even harder. I am constantly at battle with opposing emotions and it seems like I can never catch a break. I recognize that many teenage girls feel the same way, and I wanted to let them all know that they are not alone.

The process: Automatically, I knew that I wanted to write a poetry book because I think poems are such a fascinating medium where the author can express unique emotions that are still very relatable and, of course, leave the rest up to interpretation. I also really love art and I wanted to try watercolor painting, so I paired up each poem with a particular object that that poem was centered around. It's not easy to explain the feelings associated with being a teenage girl, so I really took time to sit with myself and think about all of the different moments where I felt certain emotions. I researched various poets, with the help of my Junior Workshop advisor, and realized that I loved Sylvia Plath's writing the most. Her poems ended up being very inspirational and I dedicated my epigraph to one of them.

What I learned: First, I learned how to paint well with watercolors, which was a great achievement and an amazing trial and error process to go through! I think one of the most important things I learned was how to deal with certain feelings that you have. The physical act of writing them out and associating objects or moments to them really helped me understand my past emotions more and it was very moving.

What's next: Absolutely! I wrote more poems over the summer and I had a great time continuing all of the things I learned in my Junior Workshop class. This was the first book I have ever written so it has definitely inspired me to write more and has set a solid foundation for my future books.