Kaleidoscope by Kristen Gresalfi

My life is as abstract as an ink blot test

But as precise as a geometric architect

My body is like a Picasso, only truly understood by its maker

My spirit is one of a mythical creature which flies to a different world


This mind is like no other, unique as one’s fingerprints

My heart is comprised of the most malleable material

That allows my emotions to flow as effortlessly as blood through veins

My soul, an unchartered treasure, its key hidden from the untrained eye


My brain is damaged goods, as science would say

Lucky my kaleidoscopic life isn’t broke

Its manufacturer is no joke

All of the pieces are cut to size


When all aspects of my life are accounted for

There’s only one force

That I want to stay my course

Turning my lens right to left, honing in on the path that is correct



Me by Madison Gaines

My door has been locked for 3 years, 8 months, and 26 days. I have explored this 25′ x 25′ room over and over again. Waking, pacing, eating, searching, sleeping, and then starting the process again for 3 years, 8 months, and 25 days. It took less than a week for it to become my monotonous routine. Doing it over and over and over again…

Some nights, after a long day of pacing and pacing and pacing, nightmares consume me. I scream, even after I wake, with no one to console me. No mother to hold me close, no father to check under my bed for monsters. But in this room, with its broken toilet in one corner and a too-small blanket and ratty pillow in another, there is no place for the monsters to hide. Or at least, that’s what I thought.

For 1 year, 6 months, and 19 days, I’ve been thinking about the bare door, locked from the outside. For 1 year, 4 months, and 7 days, I’ve pondered the fact that this eternal darkness I’ve been shrouded in has become comforting. That the unidentified meat that falls through a hole in the ceiling is appealing to me. That I can’t remember a day when there weren’t voices echoing through my mind.

It took me 2 years, 2 months, and 7 days to realize that the bare door was to keep something inside, not to keep something out. It took me 2 years, 4 months, and 19 days to realize that the reason why there’s no one to console me, why there’s no mother to hold me close, why there’s no father to check under my bed for monsters, why there’s no one to protect me….is because they can’t save me…..from me.

Forever by Veronica Tatone (Nora Roberts Young Writers Institute)

We loved each other before we knew anything. When we were still just souls, drifting in another world where there is no gender or race or even species. We were content to simply be together.

Everything changed the day the messengers came to us. They told us that it was our time to fulfill our destinies, to be given physical forms and start a new life on a planet that the native species called ‘Earth.’ We knew nothing of such a place, and at first we were distraught. I remember comforting you in your fear.

The messengers told us that they would be kind to us and send us to Earth at around the same time, so that we could be together there. They warned us it would be hard, that they had no control over where we would be sent. Countries and borders meant nothing to us in the Otherworld. We would have trouble finding each other.

They sent me before they sent you, at my request. I knew you’d be frightened to go first.

But the messengers unknowingly damned us the day they sent you. They had no way of knowing the cultural customs of Earth, none of them having lived there themselves. How could they have known we would be shunned, that people would want to keep us apart? How could they have known it was a cultural taboo, that they had done the same to millions of souls before us?

For you see, they made us both human men.

Veronica Tatone is a 16-year-old entering the 11th grade at Mercersburg
Academy, where she will be taking AP English and writes for the Arts page
of the school newspaper. She attended the Nora Roberts Writing Institute
and has been published in her school’s art and literature magazine, the
Blue Review. She enjoys writing science fiction and fantasy.

Run to the Thicket by Marissa LaPorte (Nora Roberts Young Writers Institute)

A beautiful female fox, with shining red fur, basks in the sun. A male is nearby, drinking from a stream. There is not the slightest hint of a breeze. Yet the heat is not stifling, it is pleasurable. The birds produce a melodic symphony. The sound of the male fox’s lazy lapping can be heard, along with the gentle trickle of the stream.  The female fox is dozing off, her majestic golden eyes becoming hidden by her drooping eyelids.

The male fox raises his head from the stream and scans between the trees. The female arouses and her black tipped ears flick back and forth. The birds abruptly stop chirping and there is silence, only for a moment. The deafening crack of a gunshot rips through the air and the birds take flight. The male fox falls and blood trickles from his shoulder. The female nimbly jumps to her paws and rockets in-between the trees, kicking up soil behind her. Shots are being fired behind her and soon the howling of hounds fills the air.

She races deeper and deeper into the forest. The trees and shrubbery grow thicker the further her legs carry her. She bounds over fallen trees and ducks under low hanging branches. With her ears flat to her head and determination burning in her heart, she draws near to her destination. She jumps through a thick bush and hunkers down in a small clearing, hidden by its surrounding vegetation.  She has reached the thicket.

Marissa LaPorte is entering her senior year at Escanaba High School in Escanaba, MI. She won the annual “Edgar Allan Poe Writing Contest” held at Escanaba High School three consecutive years. She has also been selected as one of a few different winners for four contests held on the writing website Figment.com and was a runner up the “Letter’s About Literature Contest” and the NRYWI contest in 2013. She visited the NRYWI in 2014. Realistic fiction is her genre of choice but she also enjoys and writes horror occasionally.

Blow by Sean Kenny

Let us wind up the day

Crank up the winds, stopper up the sunlight

Cross the tracks the wrong way round

And dance through the dust with the alley cats


Jelly burns, bloody tires, chains swinging free

Skins on the table, bones in the sink

Tears all dried up, and far too much to drink


Come with me, sing with me, pierce the piercing howl

Skip the fence, beat the bricks

Rattle your rosary beads

Beechwood, maple, ponderous ponderosa


Let us pop the world

Catch its humors in a sieve

Sift the hugs from the fangs

And let the chaff float away with the weeds


Cross the tracks the right way round

Bend ‘em, make a bow

Sit down among the dandelions

Make a wish, and


Hedge Apple Reception on October 14th

The Fall 2014 Issue of the HCC literary magazine has arrived! Please join us for a celebration and reading!


WHEN:         Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

5:00 — Food, conversation, and sign-ups

5:20 – Hagerstown Magazine Internship Experience (Matt Makowski and Stephanie Eberly)

5:30 — Prose and poetry readings by contributors, followed by an open mic session

6:45– Workshops


WHERE:    Career Program Building 210-212

Hors d’oeuvres and drinks will be served.

Workshops will include:


Writing Dialogue – Amanda Hart Miller

Progressive Story Group Write – Hannah Streett and Stephanie Eberly


The reception and workshops are open to the public.


New pieces of fiction, poetry, and artwork released at www.hedgeapplemagazine.com throughout the year. Special congratulations to the 2014 participants of the Nora Roberts Young Writers Institute who were published in the online edition of the Hedge Apple.


The submission deadline for next year’s Hedge Apple is January 31st 2015.

Email your poetry, fiction, artwork, or photography, with a brief bio, to hedgeapple@hagerstowncc.edu

Publication of Authors from the Nora Roberts Young Writers Institute

The Hedge Apple magazine is pleased to publish the work of several young authors who attended the Nora Roberts Young Writers Institute this summer. These teens were wonderful to work with, and as you can see from their writing, they are a talented bunch. We will announce the editor’s choice award at the Hedge Apple reception on October 14th at 5:00 in CPB 210-212 on the HCC campus in Hagerstown, MD.

The Golden Boy by William Poe-Pitcher (Nora Roberts Young Writers Institute)

The golden boy played all day,

With his golden toy amongst the hay.

He played and laughed and had his way,

Upon him the sun casted its ray.

Then from what is the horizon came the rider,

Beneath his wreath sat a spider.

Its eight eyes shining like rubies in the sun,

Its fangs the size of barrels it looked like no fun.

The golden boy sat still,

And gazed upon the rider ill.

To him, it seemed so very far,

And moved slow as if engrossed in tar.

Until it came upon the time,

When the golden boy would see it close and fine.

Then for he could see,

Said it swift and loud ‘It’s coming for me’.

So he ran away,

Beyond night and day.

Now the golden boy,

Was without his golden toy.

Instead all they boy had,

Was a head that sat mad.

Then one golden day,

The rider got it’s way.

Upon the fang the golden boy thrust,

Into a new world would he trust.

Now there was no toy,

And now there was no golden boy.

Instead stood tall a silver man,

A grimace and no thoughts of I can.

Instead he’s dealt a silver hand,

Of which he works to bone from the world’s demand.

William Poe-Pitcher is currently in the midst of pursuing enrollment in the Barbra Ingram High School. He spends time studying philosophy, history and political academia and tends to base his work around such things. He has an admiration for symbolism and strives to put multiple layers to a singular story. He enjoys ancient culture and exploring old theistic ideologies which can also be seen incorporated into his writing.