Once it was July
and I listened to a conch shell until
all the ocean rustling bled out.
Summer suffused with salt and gold,
everything spilling outside the seams.
That day the sky smoldered
ash-white like the wrong
side of a mirror. I saw a girl
carried by the sugary breeze,
sequins in her hair, but in a few years
nobody will remember the curve of her hips.

I still don’t know what it means to be beautiful
for more than a moment.

Rona Wang is a seventeen-year-old high school senior from Portland, OR. She has been nationally recognized by the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, The Sierra Nevada Review, and National Poetry Quarterly. Currently, she serves as a poetry reader for The Blueshift Journal, youth poet ambassador for her city, and editor for her school magazine. Her writing can be found in The Best Teen Writing of 2014, The Sierra Nevada Review, Textploit, Canvas, and other publications. When not writing, she’s working out a math problem or getting lost in downtown. She blogs about studying and the college admissions process at http://chasingcollegedreams.tumblr.com.

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