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Artwork by Nick Dilworth

Everything Comes With A Price

A Poem by Rhiannon Steele from Collegiate

Hands red, beating against the cold steel wire.

Hearing drops, aware of the tears falling,

Smelling the acidic tang of iron.

My head smacks the bars, eyes shut, bruises crawling


Suffocating, sore, non-stop ringing.

How many months, years, will it have been?

The rust on the lock is stinging.

True freedom, a wish from a djinn.


A key flickers, charming the mind’s eye.

It’s so light. Can this even be real?

Finally a chance to leave, no time to cry.

Why must this be so much like a deal?


The strange key slides in the heavy lock.

Feelings of regret are like a hawk.