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W.I.S.E. Youth Chronicles


This is the site of our official W.I.S.E. Youth literary journal. The page will be updated bi-monthly, and will cover themes relating to the community, self-awareness, personal/social issues, education, sexuality, relationships, health/well-being, career and spirituality. Every issue will present creative expression in the form of poetry, visual arts, creative writing, music, theatre and dance to the ‘urban trends’ such as graffiti and spoken word, according to the monthly topic. 


 W.I.S.E. Youth Chronicles
    Feb. 2005:Issue 1
 Love and Relationships

In a city full of lights
And nights full of whispers
While the trains thundered
The honking of cars drowned out the weeping.
There's a chamber full of light
Where the aroma of Old Spice
and cinnamon wiped all tears.
Hard rain drops
splashed against the concrete.
And a picture of a true love being stomped away,
crowds around me,
The whispers and chatter drown out the sound.
There's no point of getting it back now.
The strong manly cologne brings me back.
And the familiar sound of laughter makes me focus.
The cheers for the Yankees from when I was an embryo.
And the familiar humming that soothes me.
the Spanish spice tickles my nose.
And Nana's soft, wrinkled hands gives me a bracelet with her scent.
The Book of Life takes me back
As I flip the pages and the smell of dust stuffs my nose.
This is my Life
This is where I come from.- Kaylee Santos

"Wake up, Beba."
I don't want to wake up,
quedarme en my dream world
where our hopes collide
cause in the real world
Everything is para chavarse
When you think that you know
You wonder how the hell did this happen
wondering about life
And how da hell I can change it
Walking up to la bodega
Hoping not to get shot
Viviendo en esta vida
Filled with hate and corruption
Viendo how people be racist
All my homegirls getting arrested
Everyone just be hating
Cause of the colors I be wearing
I guess my Titi was right
When she said Life was a bitch
because it changes from bad and good
Stabbing you in the back
Cause la vida es tramposa
It could never be trusted.
Thats' why life needs people like me
Latinos, Blacks, Asians and Whites
They want to make a difference en este mundo.
So when mom calls out "Beba, wake up."
I'll wake up
Levantarme de mis suen~os
to make them a reality
To make a difference in this world
To make it my dreamworld.- Kaylee Santos

An essay on Don't be Cruel- Article for discussion 2/19
The article was about a girl that as an adult now regrets what she did in high school. When she was in high school, many of her friends teased an innocent girl. She could've stopped all of this from happening, but instead she just kept it going. She didn't even try to defend Effie because she was insecure and she had no faith in her friends to like her after she stood up to them for Effie. She was a scared little girl who wanted nothing more than to belong and to be liked. So in the future, if you do not want to regret something like this girl did then you should treat others just how you want to be treated. So next time you or someone else hears a group of kids dissing someone else you should go up to that person and try to stop them from hurting someone else's feelings. Don't be cruel! - Yadira Mangual

Comedy skit on Marriage
You know how before you get married a man might have a bachelor party? The reality is that it is a goodbye to the single life! Well, I've been thinking that maybe they should change the name to the Welcome to hell party! At this party there will be fun games and entertainment. At this party instead of strippers there will be nagging housewives in slippers and rollers telling you to, "Take out the garbage!" At this party a wonderful game called, "Does this belong here?" will be played. The men always lose and answer in a tired tone, "No, honey you win!" Now if you end up sleeping on the couch some nights don't get too attached cause your wife will definitely think you love the couch more than you love her. Might be true. So if you are thinking of getting married, have yourself a "Welcome to hell" party and I promise you'll think twice.- Steven Arroyo

The Flavors of Love
Blueberry is an ocean of tears
Kiwi is the flavor of my smile
Strawberry is the color of my heart
Orange is the taste of sweet and sour grapes running down my throat
Because I am a cherry bright and ready
And these colors are me in my own special way so thank you God...Sabrina Maldonado

Complete Darkness
Im so sick of crying alone in my room
Crying myself to sleep
I dont understand why I continue to weep
What happened, happened.
Its already done.
I don't see
why I can't just get over it and have a little fun
but there is no fun 
Instead I run
I run from the tears and sorrow and the bright light from the sun
Because ever since it happened
Ever since it was done
My life has been complete darkness 
There is no one
There is no one here to talk to
I'm all alone
The phoneline is dead
and so
is my heart now.
This poem
has ended right at its start.- Charlene DeJesus

A Love-Dedicated-
Problems come and go,
yet some is unknown.
You have one big problem because of his age,
But he is just a brand new page.
Something so precious that is creaseless,
When I'm around him I'm left speechless.
Scared to lose him because he's a valuable item,
Knowing my brothers they'll be fightin'.
Wanting to avoid a big predicament,
Wanting to avoid the argument.
How did this happen all of a sudden?
O wells boy got all my lovin'.
Cute smile,cute face, cute personality,
I feel like this is a dream I must come back to reality.- Maru Lopez

Friends or Family
I'm here in a cold cellar with bad people that did wrong before me,
I wish I could have done better and listened to my family.
Everyone was by my side when I was wrong,
I thought our love would never grow weak but it never stood strong.
Now I look into my past and see how I never comprehended what I was told,
I thought I was a little gangsta 
I thought I was very bold.
I chilled with the toughest girls cause I thought I fit,
But during the battle they made me pick.
I had to choose between my family and the crew,
I chose my friend and my family cried out and yelled MARU!
I took one look back to see the people I left behind,
I realized that my friends can give me love but not the family kind.
I've made mistakes a big one that can't be solved,
I wished I never pulled the trigger why did I get involved?
Now I'm stuck here in jail and where are those people I call friends?
Now I realized that your families love will never end.- Maru Lopez


 W.I.S.E. Youth Chronicles      
   March 2005:Issue 2
Alternatives to Violence

Independent Woman
The pain
brought by my walk
when I say that I care
and that life is not fair.
You say I won't dare.
So I strike with one look.
I sting with one touch.
Stomping away what seems to be fear.
Holding close to me what's dear.
Standing up straight
with my chin held up high,
that strong walk I have.
Stops you from hurting me
And then you realize
that I can make it on my own.
I never needed you,
but you needed me.
Because every man needs a woman
an independent woman
and that is me.- Kaylee Santos

We can do it!
Reach our goals which was once unexpected
In a society made up of people who are not respected
No matter how much we fought we were still not accepted
We thought we could not do it but we did!
With a life that has barely begun
And experiences have yet to be fulfilled
We can do it we really can
If you believe in faith and the power of will
Glass ceilings, racism and democracy are not ways to live
We have no idea how powerful the world really is
The impact or the pressure that we give.
We thought we could not do it but we did!
The person inside me, the person I am
Strolled through paths and walked many miles
We can do it we really can
I have cried before but now I smile
Through all the years that we had to fight
We thought we couldn't do it, we were blinded by our sight
But through all of the agony there was a light
We thought we could not do it but we did!
           Yadira Mangual
           Shaniqua Franklin

Dedicated-To My Sister
I open my eyes to look around this bright place,
I can't help but look at this woman's beautiful face,
She asked me if I remember or has it been erased,
She cried when I asked her if she thought I was a big disgrace.
She was always by my side no matter what went down,
Even that night when the bullets put us in the ground,
We were laying next to each other when our bodies were found,
We might've died but we'll be back for another round.- Maru Lopez





W.I.S.E. Youth's bi-monthly literary journal will include short stories, articles, poetry and visual arts based on the articles/topics of discussion for the months of February(Love and Relationships) and March(Alternatives to Violence). 2/12 is the deadline for Feb.submissions. 3/12 will be the deadline for March submissions. Mentors/Mentees will be reminded of future deadlines which will be approximately every month. 

We are always looking for new ideas and topics for the monthly newsletter as well as volunteers to maintain the site. If you have an idea or would be interested in writing an article for W.I.S.E. Youth, please fill out the form below.



En el Bronx

En el Bronx

La Bodega screams

Abierta 24 horas

El viejo screams

"Mira, no fiao for quarter waters!"

Playing numbers in the back

Selling loosies out the pack

Y Papi Chulo lights a Newport

sparking smoke halos

swimming from his menthol lips.

Over there

En el Bronx

The Projects are kingdoms

of Salsa queens

and clothesline dreams

Tight blue jeans transform

into pumping platforms

mini faldas

gold links

Crashing the pavement

with men's eyes full of winks.

En el Bronx

el bochinche buzzes

from Carmen's house por telefono

"My baby's daddy can kiss my ass,

My new man is Wilfredo."

"Wilfredo que?"

"Wilfredo Gobierno, Sr."

En el Bronx

Amor sizzles in the park

After dark

Eight Ball brew

Me and my Boo

Spark an L

Fall into magical urban spells

En el Bronx

Tu sabes

Fort Apache, Bronx Bombers, Mecca of HipHop,

Beat Street, Boogie Down Bronx!

Phone numbers on Bambu

"Hey shorty what's up with me and you."

Carlitos and Junito at the corner clutch their dicks

Try to make a dollar out of hustling mad nicks

They missed

Got dissed

You know they're fucking pissed

Shitty Cheater! Bang! Bang!

Niggas get dismissed.

En el Bronx

You hear it.

El tren jingling beats of crashing steel

Pulsating rhythms in our doorknockers

Waving banderas off fire escapes

Drowning echoes of un merenguito

from Maria's siempre screaming at her man Tito.

Kids fingers in their ears

Screeching thunder when it stops

Peepimg cada tipo and his culito when he bops.

The Cops, 5-0, Po-Po, La Jara

It's getting harder surviving on the streets

making ends meet

when the only chavo in your pocket is a food stamp to eat


Rice and Beans might be good for your heart

but they taste better when they're

arroz con habichuelas

from abuelas

con las belas

burning de Chango, Ellegua

Those who died, we keep the pride alive.

Porque el Bronx

holds secret dreams of

Papi Chulo and his own Bodega on the block

Carmen's man buying her that new shiny rock

Carlitos and Junito cutting records instead of dope

and the hope for tomorrow

the hope from ayer

keeps us shining everywhere


over there

En el Bronx - Delilah Martinez






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