Getting Out

Writing by Esther Lee // Photograph by Julie Young

Success is sweeter on the tongue when you’re only a mile away.

It’s a saccharine butterscotch melting into the back of your mouth,

the kind you take from the doctor’s office, the kind that you force yourself to believe tastes good.

Desire is like that,

You don’t know it until you’ve suckled from her strawberry-stained lips but by then

you’ve already overstepped your welcome.

When you want something you subconsciously reach for your boy-scout pocket knife,

creating an inscription into the groove of you cerebellum so that the shape of your desire becomes a way of living.

But freedom is the pink gum-ball at the toy store, the one that never seems to tumble into your palm.


Lately, you’ve been plotting

Stealing quarters from your mother’s purse and picking up pennies from cracked suburban sidewalks, the want inside you is seething, growing,

Manifesting into a bruise-coloured anger.

You don’t know it until you’re on the highway and three hours away from home and watching cities blur by

but damn do you want

to get the hell out of here.


Esther Lee

Esther is a fifteen year old writer and artist who dreams of becoming an industrial-organisational therapist and owning four dogs. When she’s not occupied with school and art, she visits the thrift shop and watches Wes Anderson movies. You can find her Instagram @hellagorl and her tumblr @shadowhed.

Julie Young

Julie Young is a currently a senior in high school. Tigress magazine is Julie’s first writing internship but she is hoping to do more in the future. Julie has a passion for photography, veganism, running, swimming, and writing.

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