Nayab Sanchez

Text Book Friends

We’re textbook friends.
Meeting in school, assigned seat-by-seat.
You see me, I see you; you’re sitting right next to me.
Yet somehow the words won’t come out of me.
All I can ask is “What’d you get on number three?”
We stare and stare, with nothing actually meaningful to say.
Then you lean over and ask me “Hey, what does this mean?”

We’re textbook friends.
I see you everyday, but there’s nothing to say.
Just an acquaintance, some person, a stranger to me.
Just a stranger to forget, that’s all we’re going to be.
I want to get closer, I want to get closer.
But the barriers, our biases, won’t ever let my dreams come true.
All I can do is keep being your textbook friend.

We’re textbook friends.
But shouldn’t friends have more substance to their relationship?
As I watch you from afar, with another group of friends, I can’t help but wonder:
Shouldn’t we talk more? Shouldn’t we see each other more? Shouldn’t we be…?
I want a meaningful connection with you, but that might make me selfish.
So I’ll adapt to the distance and find a way to inch closer to the wall.

We’re text book friends.
All I can say to you is over a string of texts.
All I can manage is typing my thoughts into words.
It’s everything that I can’t tell you to your face.
A simple “Hello” or “How was your day?”
Is easier to say when we’re so far away.
It’s a deep web of lies, tangling up everything inside.
I pretend we’re real friends, not just the text book kind.

We’re text book friends.
This thin chain of messages building a bridge,
But it’s imaginary, since I can’t seem to walk over it.
A real connection is what we’re lacking.
Guess that’s why we’ve become text book friends. 

We’re text book friends.
Only communicating by text.
Never saying a thing even though I’m right next
To you. Seeing each other as only a means of success,
I want to have more than just this business relationship.
Texting each other about the book to be read;
These messages lack any sort of connection.
You know quite well, as do I,
That when we finish reading this book,
The texts we send will cease to exist.

We’re text book friends.
Mutually lying. Mutually hiding.
Mutually manipulating the game to our benefit.
A selfish relationship, its meaning only relevant for now.
A weak connection held up by the occasional meme or text.
Meaningless, void, and useless, a barrier I can’t dare to break.
Simple suits us best, to keep the status quo,
But even simple hurts too much.

We’re text book friends.
That’s all I can say, a wry truth though it may be.
You need me for English, and I need you for Math,
But after we’re done, and after we’ve gone,
You’ll find someone else, and I’ll find someone else,
To become your new, to become my new
Text book friend.

A Ghost Given Substance

I want to hold you.
Please hold me.
Please tell me I’m your world.
Make me yours, complete and full.

Connect me to you, quickly.
Pull me close, and chain me up.
Blindfold me and take me away.
Because I want to feel everything, rushing in blindly.

Raw, and quick, but slow and warm.
I want to feel all these sensations.
Rocking into my body steadily, I want to feel it.
Granting me a new substance to make me feel alive.

You are the only one who sees me.
You are the only one I see.
Are we meant to be?

Let’s throw caution to the wind.
I want to feel your love.
I want to feel your whole, true warmth.
I want you to melt the ice.

I will hold you, tight and close to my chest.
I need to feel you as much as I want you to feel me.
This desire is burning me up,
But I like it like that.

I prefer this heat, building up in my core,
And burning me up inside out.
The coldness of my life dissipates with you here.
It melts away as you cup me closer.

I feel warm.
I feel spent.
I feel satisfied.

Just by being with you, I feel human.
My pulse feels so connected to you;
Like a string tied neatly with a bow, I’m yours.
This knot is unraveling my heart, gently prying it apart. 

My heart is tearing open, as warmness seeps out of me.
I haven’t felt this way before.
I cry out in bittersweet pain, this feeling foreign, but barely familiar.

I can’t focus on anything else.
My heart is pounding too loudly, and this heat is too intense.
Is this because of you?
Euphoria washes over me as I hold onto you tighter.

You press me closer to your chest.
You must be feeling my warmth for the first time, taking it in greedily.
Or, you’re trying to take back the warmth I’m taking from you.
But I don’t mind, no matter your intention.

I feel loved.
Give it to me harder.
Please don’t stop.

I want to be more selfish.
Please, once more.
One more time, please.
I don’t want to let go, I don’t want this to end, I want to feel all of you.

I want to feel your strong arms wrap around me.
Protecting me from everything outside.
I want to feel like we’re the only two in the world right now.
I want to feel like you love me, and just me.

Can I ask for more?
Or will you leave me and forget about me like everyone else?
I don’t want to think about it.
Can I be selfish and focus on this moment right now?

Be harsher with me.
Be assertive, because I can’t.
Make a move so I don’t have to.

Tell me you’re satisfied so I won’t have to move.
Please tell me I’m just enough for you.
Can you tell me that you’re as happy as I am?
Just say that you love me, as we lay here together.

Your tired smile makes my hardened, heavy heart flutter.
Your sweet scent puts me to sleep, but I feel safe.
It’s just us two, right?
Your substance compensates for what I’m missing.

I’ll shut my eyes and accept the warmth you’re willing to feed me.
And for once, what I feel lacking,
Feels fully filled. 

Generation of Apathy

I’m told to be someone, but I don’t know who that someone is.
I look in the mirror, and look, and look, and look.
But the person staring back is not the person I’m told to be.
The person staring back at me is a product of apathy, I want to say.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told it’s nice to be empathetic, that it feels good.
And if it feels good, then I should want it.
But I don’t really want it if it takes too much effort.
My disinterest is why I’m not the person I’m supposed to be, yet.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told that there’s a time and place to focus.
But I don’t know what to focus on; I’m told myself, them, the future, the world.
It’s easier to focus on what’s the closest, as it takes less effort.
The closest thing is myself, but even that seems a bit too far.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told that close relationships make life worthwhile and fun.
But all the people around me aren’t too interested in making one.
I’m not interested in them either, it’s fine to be independent, I think.
Takes too much effort and concern to focus on those types of things, anyways.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told to help someone if they’re in need; it’s the nice thing to do.
But no one else around me is, so is it really necessary for me to do it?
They’re laughing instead, recording to show their friends how nice they are.
If everyone else is doing it, then it’s fine for me to join in, too.
I don’t really care anymore. 

I’m told that if I’m good, I’ll be rewarded.
I don’t know what’s good or what’s bad, though.
And I don’t know who’ll be rewarding me if I’m supposedly good.
The world around me rewards all sorts of things, though, so I don’t care much.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told that my generation is weak and complains too much.
I think I should scream out how untrue it is, but no one’d be interested in listening.
We just feel different about things, is all. How is that wrong?
A never-ending abyss of cynicism, burn-out, and boredom;
Our growing apathy, a result of their own negligence.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told to care more about my surroundings.
But I can only learn from example, from the people in my surroundings.
And as I look around, I see everyone’s too busy looking down.
So I’ll look down too, since I don’t wanna be the odd one out.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told to write a letter to a friend.
It’s fun to be old-fashioned for a bit, I think.
The surge of excitement I feel opening a letter entertains me briefly.
But then the excitement dies down, and I realize:
It would’ve been easier to send a text.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m told I’m a good student.
But it doesn’t matter much if I am, it won’t mean anything later.
No one cares about good students these days, anyways.
So I decide not to care, either.
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m asked about how I feel.
I don’t know how to respond, not really.
I’m told to answer honestly, but I don’t know what the honest answer is.
No one told me what I should be feeling, so I don’t know.
If I’m asked something easier, maybe I’d be able to give an answer quicker.
I’m not interested in thinking too hard, so I say what comes natural:
“I feel okay.”
I don’t really care anymore.

I’m asked what okay means.
I’m not sure, I just wanted to give an answer to be free from interrogation.
They look dissatisfied, but then again, so am I.
They look bored, but so am I.
They look frustrated, just like me.
They look tired, the bags under their eyes look like mine.
Maybe that look is natural; the emptiness in our eyes, the new status quo.
I want to say that the apathetic glare I see in the mirror isn’t just mine either.
Maybe I’m just imagining it.
Or maybe I’m not.
I don’t really care anymore.


I don’t like pain,
But a bite from you,
Is such a reward.

A craving for more,
Ties my thoughts into a knot;
I can’t stop reliving the night before.

A bubble of warmth
Tickles my core,
As I run over the mark on my neck.

All the sinful stares,
Following my unsteady path,
Just make the bite pulse; what an affair.

When I see you again.
Sheepish smiles
Spread for miles.

You hold my hand,
A sweetness to last,
I think I can learn to accept this.

You’re bittersweet and,
Your spice burns,
Yet you’re quite gentle; I’m taken off-balance.

Bite after bite peppered here and there,
A medal of your affections.
Pride swells in me from the sight.

Proof of your passion,
The mark near my thigh,
I keep it a sacred place just for us two.

To find myself beside you,
Feels like a lofty dream.
I’m floating too high under your touch.

I want to leave my own necklace of bites,
An urge to possess and keep mine.
I look forward to the spice of our nights.

Shivering, I finally leave my first mark;
I find that I can’t live without this feeling.
I hope you feel the same fluttering spark.

But I don’t know how to bring it up.
My attachment to you is dangerous.
I wonder why I treasure it so much.

The curiosity that killed the cat;
A fear to know if you like me back;
I want something to tell me that.

I want to know, just to know.
But I can’t live with any other answer than
The one I desire, though.

That fateful day,
Sucking in a breath, I ask away.
The ground is swaying.

I shut my eyes, throat closing.
I’m starting to feel the nervous heat;
Maybe I shouldn’t have said anything at all.

Then you laugh, tears in your eyes.
Cracking open an eye, heart sinking,
I hope your laughter is kinder than it seems.

Still laughing, you pull me close,
Catching me by surprise.
I’m holding a breath, unsure what it means.

“Silly girl,” you call me,
Stroking my hair; we’re too close.
Your breath tickles my neck.

Your warmth is familiar,
But its bitter spice is missing.
The difference, now, is the sweet scent.

Somehow I feel a blush arise.
We’ve done more sinful things,
Yet I feel like more of a sinner now.

I risk a whisper,
My ear against your chest:
“Why am I silly?”

You pull away,
Your firm hands holding my shoulders.
“Because I’ve loved you everyday.”

That day I learned,
That I mean more to you
Than just a simple fling.

Our shared tears made me realize,
That my love for you
Was worth the pain.

Nayab Sanchez is a senior in high school in the San Bernardino area. Starting her own writing club out of a passion for writing, she wants to pursue further improvement in her works. She commonly likes to write using dark or mature themes with a hint of subtlety, hoping it’ll cause reflection. Sanchez hopes that more people will be able to enjoy her works soon.