Meet the Members of SAGE

The English Department’s most prestigious group, SAGE, has added a great number of new faces this semester.

SAGE, or Student Advisory Group for English, is a group of committed English majors that serve as the unified student voice of the English department at Wittenberg University. We act as a liaison between the English department faculty and personnel and Wittenberg’s English students, advising on certain policy changes and other official matters. We also task ourselves with spreading awareness of the many things Wittenberg’s English department provides for its students and creating programming that both generates a presence for the English department on campus and brings the students and faculty closer together in our shared pursuit of knowledge of English literature and writing. Additionally, we assist with academic showcasing for prospective students in presenting what the Wittenberg English department has to offer.”

Here is a little introduction to the English Department’s 2018-2019 members of SAGE:


Hello! My name is Lexi and I am a senior English and Theatre double major. When I am on campus I am involved in different plays on campus, Kappa Delta sorority, and as one of the presidents for SAGE. I wanted to major in English due to my love for literature and writing, and I wanted to connect these passions into my future careers. My favorite class so far has to be Dr. Kate Polak’s “Disaster, Catastrophe, and Havoc,” and if it is offered again, I definitely recommend checking it out. Some of my other favorite English-things is the “What Can You Do With and English Major” colloquium event, as it is an opportunity for people to figure out different paths they can take with their English degree after they graduate from Wittenberg. It is so wonderful to see my peers after Wittenberg succeed in life with the tools gathered from their time here. And finally, one of my favorite books of all time has to be A Court of Mist and Fury from Sarah J Maas’ A Court of Thorns and Roses series. It’s a beautiful story of love, loss, and triumph over demons both mental and physical in a fantasy world. It’s very well written and the characters have really incredible arcs. 10/10 would recommend. – Co-President Lexi Gallion, ’19


Hello everyone! My name is Jenn and I am a senior English major with Creative Writing and Journalism minors. This is my second year as SAGE Co-President alongside Lexi, and I am truly excited to have this leadership opportunity again. Here at Witt, I’m involved in way too many things to mention, but some of my favorites include working in the Writing Center, being the Editor-in-Chief of The Torch, serving as a senior representative on the Matthies Advisory Board, and working for the English Department, a.k.a., writing these blog posts! When I came to Witt, I knew pretty much everything that I wanted to do, including my major and minors, minus all of the extracurricular activities (even though I wouldn’t wish my four years here to have gone any other way). Reading and writing are two things that have always come easy to me, so it was a natural decision to major in English so that I could read in all of my classes, and a natural decision for Creative Writing and Journalism, as I would always be writing. Last semester I had the opportunity of taking Dr. Polak’s Disaster, Catastrophe, & Havoc class. If any of you have had the opportunity to know or have class with her, you’ll know entirely what I mean when I say that it was perhaps my favorite class I’ve taken at Witt, period. Not only did I learn that there is no hope for our future as a society, but I learned that we were all hopelessly in this together. In the past, one of my favorite SAGE events has been The List, and I am super excited to get to co-host with Lexi in November. There’s a good line-up in the making, and I can’t wait to see the end result. Ever since I stumbled upon Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult in about seventh grade, it’s been my favorite. I’ve used her novel as inspiration for my creative pieces, as an example of good writing, and as a general reminder of what can happen in only nineteen minutes. – Co-President Jennifer Ryan, ’19


Hello! My name is Logan Bliss, a senior English major here at Witt. I love to slowly walk through the, what seems like, a forest of trees and color on campus. I love to watch the sun drop from the sky in the early evening as I read in the dusk of the Hollow. I also enjoy sitting and writing anywhere and everywhere. My friendships also enrich my life from day-to-day, and for that I am so grateful. I joined SAGE because I wanted to put my voice and face more across this campus—considering I’m like Spider-man with his mask on most of the time. The English major has transformed my life and made me who I am, I just want to give back to it somehow. I’d deeply recommend taking Dr. Bob Davis’ 300 level class about the Beat Generation—a generation of lost, romantic souls that still have yet to be found. Let Davis’ voice trail across the voices and words of the Beats and see what you learn. Life is too short to not try, right? That’s all I got. Until I see you reading in the library again, – Logan Bliss, ’19


My name is Lexus Cole – I’m a senior English and Communication major. On campus, I am involved in CABLE, serve on Student Senate as the Greek Life representative, I also serve as a Peer Mentor for the FYS program, and work in the Writing Center, aside from being a part of SAGE. I decided on the English major because it was the one thing I consistently loved. Words fascinate me and the fact that there are multiple ways in which you can interpret them. There are so many things that the English major can offer and it felt like the right one for me. So far, I don’t know what my favorite English class has been. I’ve loved all of the ones I’ve taken at Witt thus far. However, I think Reading the Body with Dr. Cynthia Richards could be my favorite, if I absolutely had to choose. I’m only a few weeks in, but it’s a very refreshing class and take on what we’re reading. The literary costume contest is always an event that I enjoy. Personally, I’m really bad at coming up with clever costumes, but I think it’s really nice to see how creative others can get, especially with so many options. This summer, I read Call Me By Your Name, which has quickly become one of my favorite books. I also enjoy The Handmaid’s Tale and The Year of Magical Thinking. All of these books were just read at the right time, so they all hold a special place in my heart. – Lexie Cole, ’19


My name is Kristen Feigel and I am a senior English/Theatre double major with a minor in secondary education. I love to read, write, act and direct plays, watch movies, and hang out with friends. I joined SAGE to get to know the people and to better know everything that happens within the department. I highly recommend taking a class with Dr. Mattison, if possible; the content is always relevant and I always leave his classes asking more questions than I had when class started. – Kristen Feigel, ’19

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Hey, my name is Victoria and I’m a senior majoring in English. This is my first year in SAGE but besides this, you can find me in the Writing Center where I am an advisor. Because of my love for writing and my passion for books, it only made sense for me to be an English major but I did have to find my way back to it. The English Department is really amazing and so it’s really hard to pick a favorite English class that I’ve had so far. However, Dr. Lori Askeland’s Outlaw Love course is one I deeply appreciated. As I am currently studying abroad, I won’t be at any of the SAGE events this semester, but I am looking forward to hearing about all of them, especially The List event as I need new book suggestions. And now one of my favorite questions: what is my favorite book? I find that I can’t pick a favorite book as I enjoy almost every book I read on a deep level, but my book of the year that I would recommend to everyone to read would have to be Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi. – Victoria Ladipo, ’19


Hi, my name is Emma Stogsdill and I am a senior majoring in English and environmental science. I am really passionate about marching band, drum corps, and especially color guard (if y’all know what that is), and I love cute animals. I joined SAGE to be a part of something on campus, to get closer with my classmates in the English Department, and to help out other English majors as well as potential incoming English majors. I had a blast taking Advanced Poetry Writing with Dr. Polak and would recommend it to anyone that enjoys poetry in the slightest. – Emma Stogsdill, ’19


Hey everyone! My name is Erykah Andrews and I am a junior majoring in English and minoring in Education. I love music! I play the viola in the Wittenberg Orchestra. I also enjoy reading and writing in my free time and going on adventures with my friends! I decided to become an English major when I took English 101 my freshman year with Dr. Askeland. I would recommend that class to incoming students because it isn’t only a general education requirement, but you learn a lot about writing essays, which will prepare for the years to come, and you also learn a lot about your strengths and weaknesses in your writing skills. I joined SAGE because my professor and advisor, Dr. Askeland, recommended me. I love being a part of SAGE and the English Department and I hope to help incoming freshmen and upperclassmen who want to be English majors go in the right direction. SAGE is a way for me to give back to my school and dedicate myself to my major. GO TIGERS! – Erykah Andrews, ’20


My name is Reese Harper. I’m a junior English major (and probably doing another major/minor to be determined). If you read my blurb last year, I said I was going to double major in psychology if I get my life together. Life update: I didn’t. In addition to my involvement with SAGE, I am president of the Witt Review of Literature & Art, on exec for Spectrum, write for The Torch, and probably play a role in any of the other italicized student organizations on campus. I’m also a member of Alpha Delta Pi Sorority and Alpha Phi Omega Service Fraternity. I majored in English because I enjoy over-analyzing my existence. My favorite class in the English department so far is one that I’m currently enrolled in: Dr. Scot Hinson’s Contemporary American Fiction. You should come to the English department’s pizza party September 5th. I’m going, and I don’t even like pizza. My favorite book is Demain by Herman Hesse. It’s kind of like The Catcher in the Rye in that should read it before you turn 25. Here is a picture of me eating spaghetti because I don’t like pizza. – Reese Harper, ’20


.As an English major, I tend to do a lot of reading – more specifically poetry and creative nonfiction, as it is my favorite of the arts. My favorite book consists of “Nothing” by Jane Teller and the Tenth Edition of The Bedford Reader. I find essays to be particularly enjoyable and the art of the essay is quite fascinating. Along with this, I write a tremendous amount in my free time. Writing is undoubtedly a pastime I take great care in. However, there is only so much you can do behind the wondrous canvas of a notebook. Therefore, I joined SAGE as a way to become more involved within the English Department. I highly encourage prospective English majors to indulge in the Literary Form and Interpretation course with Dr. Bob Davis. The course has allowed my writing to breathe and flourish under his instruction. If one desires to find a new light in the work of others, as well as breathe life into their own writing, Literary Form and Interpretation would be an amiable first step. In the past year, I have also published my first book, “Ginger Tea,” available for purchase on Amazon and run a rather inconsistent blog on I am currently working on publishing my memoir, and hope to unveil my new book of poetry in the months to come! – Nikki Howard, ’20


Hello, hello! I am Emma Kilpatrick, a junior English major and triple minor in Creative Writing, Dance, and Music. I’m really heavily involved on campus because I’m awful at sitting still. I’m part of Fact in Fiction (the creative writing club), Shakespeare Society, the Tiger Pep Band, Wittenberg Singers, the History Club, and the Witt Late Night planning team. I decided to major in English because I want to be a writer when I grow up, and I wanted to take these four years as an opportunity to really let my craft develop. Because I can’t just pick one, my favorite Witt English courses are D’Arcy Fallon’s Creative Writing course and Dr. Scot Hinson’s American Literary Genealogies. My favorite English Department program is the annual Matchbook Poetry event, because I live and breathe poetry. And finally, my all-time favorite work of fiction is Neil Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane. – Emma Kilpatrick, ‘20


My name is Carly Schneider and I am a junior. I’m majoring in English and Sociology (but don’t ask me to pick a favorite). I enjoy writing, reading a good story, and discovering new pieces of myself… like the part of me that likes to paint but isn’t too good at it. I joined SAGE to assist the English Department in whatever ways I can. Amazing things do not happen unless people work together to make them happen. I like to help out wherever I can with the things I love. For future English majors, I recommend taking Beginning Creative Writing. I was in the class and can already say that I am learning to appreciate writing in new ways. It forces you to step outside your comfort zone and I believe that pushing your boundaries is what college is all about. – Carly Schneider, ’20


Hello! My name is Clay Waidelich and I am a junior English major with a minor in Education. Other than my studies I am involved on campus in The Torch, Student Leadership Fellows, S.A.G.E., Sigma Tau Delta (English honors society), and Kappa Delta Pi (Education honors society). Finding my love for English was not your typical story. I have always loved reading, but it took me until my sophomore year of high school until I figured out my love for all of the English subject. The only reason I found my passion was because a fantastic teacher of mine took it upon herself to challenge me and make me a better writer and analyst. I grew significantly through this and my love for English blossomed. Due to the work of my teacher, I decided I wanted to be a high school English teacher. So far, my favorite class in the Witt English department has to be British Literary Genealogies because I was introduced to so many new writers. The colloquiums offered are also really cool; my favorite is by far the defense of the List as professors have to dive into the importance of the works they have chosen. If I were to add a book to the List, it would certainly be The Great Gatsby. – Clay Waidelich, ’20


Hi, I’m Megan! I’m a junior English major with minors in creative writing and journalism! I work as the manager of the chapel choir and you might see me around in Fact in Fiction, kayak club, WCA, Shakespeare Society, the costume shop, and Greek Life! I’m an English major because you get a free mug (and also endless deep discussions about some of the most incredible literature, but mostly the mug). My favorite English classes are anything with writing! One of the greatest events of the year is the costume party! What other colloquium involves costumes, pizza, and English friends? We’ve read some pretty phenomenal books in my classes, but Gatsby will always hold a special place in my heart. Maybe I’ll dress up as him this year for the costume party. – Megan Winters, ’20


Welcome Back!

Witty English welcomes all of the new freshmen and returning students back to Wittenberg for the fall semester and the 2018-2019 academic year.

The English Department’s first event will occur on Wednesday, September 5th at 4:00 p.m. in Ness Auditorium.

For those considering an English major or Creative Writing and/or Journalism minors, this is a great opportunity to talk with current majors/minors and faculty/staff. Undeclared students may also have the opportunity to declare their major/minor at the event.

For declared majors/minors, class pictures will be taken at 4:30 p.m. Pizza and light refreshments will be served promptly at 4:00 p.m.


A Civil Rights Activist Too Often Forgotten: Bayard Rustin

Last week, a lecture series featuring the life of Bayard Rustin, a gay Civil Rights activist, was presented at Wittenberg University.

Courtesy of The Torch, Witty English features junior English major Reese Harper’s article, who covered the event.

When thinking about the 1960’s Civil Rights Movement, big names like Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X are usually the first to come to mind. However, many other figures were involved in the movement and not all of their legacies appear in history textbooks.

Last Friday, scholars and activists, including Jared Leighton, Ph.D., Walter Naegle and John D’Emilio, Ph.D., visited Wittenberg’s Shouvlin Center. This event was in conjunction with Wittenberg’s English professor Rick Incorvati’s “Writing for Social Change” class to bring light to a civil rights activist too often forgotten: Bayard Rustin.

Rustin’s greatest accomplishment included organizing the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in August of 1963, which advocated for the social, economic and political of rights of African Americans and is where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. The march resulted in the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act that outlawed discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex and national origin.

Historians and social scientists cite Rustin’s sexuality—as an openly gay man—as his greatest obstacle in the face of his opponents and the main reason his legacy is often forgotten. Other civil rights activists believed that Rustin’s sexuality would undermine the movement and although Rustin hoped to connect the black civil rights movement with the fight for gay rights, those around him feared that they would lose key forces working with them, such as churches.

Leighton, a professor of African-American and LGBTQ+ history at the University of Nebraska started off the lecture by reading a paper he wrote about the connections between black civil rights activists and LGBTQ+ activists in the 1960’s. He noted that LGBTQ+ people came together around the civil rights movement because of its high ideals of equal opportunities and freedom. However, gay rights activists tended to organize separately, rather than drawing civil rights networks to form a massive group.

In response to the subversion of LGBTQ+ civil rights activists in the 1960’s, “The entirety of the past is not always legible, especially when discussing oppression,” Leighton said.

D’Emilio, author of “Lost Prophet: The Life and Times of Bayard Rustin,” also noted the difficulty of honoring lesser-known activists like Rustin.

“The way history is put out there, only the biggest names come out to us unless we’re actively searching for people like Bayard Rustin,” he said.

D’Emilio also discussed the difficulty in “coming out of the closet” during the 1960’s.

“It was nearly impossible to be ‘out’ in the 1960’s,” D’Emilio said. “’Coming out’ was a key phrase, but it meant only allowing other LGBT people know you’re gay.”

The discussion and responses to the essay were followed by Q&A session with the audience that included questions like, “How did you find a way around the family and church being for racial equality but against LGBT rights?” and “How do we increase solidarity between Civil Rights Groups and LGBT activists?”

Naegle, Rustin’s former partner, answered from his first-hand experiences.

“The response to the church and family is alternative institutions: alternative definitions of family and relationships as well as the creation of new churches,” Naegle said. “Rustin knew nonviolence and had the practical experience that King didn’t have, but sometimes King found it difficult that Rustin was gay.”

Naegle connected the question of solidarity to one of the most prominent civil rights movements today, Black Lives Matter.

“We need open communication between groups along mutual causes and true inclusiveness to make sure everyone has their voice heard,” Naegle said. “I could see it happening in BLM, considering two of its three founding members identify as queer. It’s intersectional in its founding.”

The closing question from an audience member asked if Rustin, as a leader in non-violent change particularly, felt that civil disobedience undermined the cause of civil rights.

“From protest to politics, no matter what movement, we will never win on our own. We wouldn’t be in this situation in first place if we could, and that was Rustin’s underlying principle,” Naegle said.

Saying Goodbye: Kailey Mau, ’18

One of my favorite classes at Wittenberg was Dr. Robin Inboden’s “Chick Flicks” film class. I enjoyed learning about women’s changing roles in Hollywood, in addition to how influential they were in the making of early films. My favorite memory in this class was the day where we tried on antique hats and discussed costuming. Also, (this was for a different class with Dr. Inboden) one of my favorite Wittenberg memories was when our 300 level class took a trip to Mast Mansion and had a tea party! It was nearly Christmas time and there was a slight snowfall, but we sat inside with a warm cup of tea and wonderful blueberry scones–it felt magical! 17097177_682799645261556_6794984144606811334_o

My other favorite class at Wittenberg was Dr. Mike Mattison’s “Writing for Teachers” class. I took the course right before student teaching, and I felt that this prepared me the most for life in the classroom. Though it was a night class, time always flew by because we always had the most fascinating discussions about pedagogy, writing philosophies, and ultimately how to become the best possible teacher. These two classes and wonderful professors are why I love Wittenberg. I’ll definitely miss my time here.

Saying Goodbye: Joey Sechrist, ’18

It’s impossible to pick a single course or professor that stood above the rest – from the rigorous theoretical discussions of Dr. Sha’dawn Battle’s class to the contemplative loafing exercises (in the spirit of Walt Whitman) in Dr. Kate Polak’s poetry course, they are all worth mentioning. I loved every English course I had the privilege to take, and this is largely thanks to the investment of our professors in their work and students. This engagement has inspired me to potentially pursue a career in academia; I’d like to feel the same level of fulfillment, which has been so apparent in my English professors’ passion, in my own career. As I did in my thesis, I hope to continue working with political theory in literature, and I am also considering pursuing a master’s degree in Political Science to supplement this.


Looking towards a future which increasingly devalues the liberal arts education, I wonder if the job market will continue to accommodate (although this accommodation is already questionable) the study of literature. I hope so, but I’m not crossing my fingers. While I have learned marketable skills at Wittenberg, I have more importantly learned to question the concept of marketability itself. If we value what we teach, I strongly believe that we must fundamentally change the relations of production, to use Marx’s term, which stifle it. If this is the task of the twenty-first century English major, so be it!

Saying Goodbye: Reed Gibson, ’18

When I first came to Wittenberg, I was very hesitant to major in English. I have always been a terrible speller. But, I knew that the math and science route was not for me. I didn’t want black and white answers; I wanted to challenge myself and provoke new thoughts and ideas.

There’s been quite a few times where I feel like I bit off more than I could chew in that regard. The first was Dr. Ian MacDonald’s Caribbean Literature, a class that was, “more like a graduate level class,” and happened to be my first 300-level English class. Another is happening right now as I’m desperately crawling to the finish line for Dr. Kate Polak’s Disaster, Catastrophe, and Havoc’s class, a class that she admitted she intended for half the class to drop due to the workload.Reed

Perhaps against my better judgement, I’ve stuck out the English major, and I believe I’m better from it. Next year I will start law school at the University of Dayton, and I feel incredibly well prepared. Read this 400-page book over two days? Easy, been there, done that. Write a 25-page thesis? Piece of cake, did that for 404/405.

I believe my education at Wittenberg has taught me valuable traits, traits like effective communication, innovative thinking, and attention to detail that will serve me well as I go forward.

Saying Goodbye: Anissa Dann, ’18

My time here at Wittenberg has been life changing, to say the least. As an English student, I have not only grown as a writer, but also as a person, citizen, and learner. I truly enjoyed all classes I took here at Witt and my education would not have been the same without the tight group of English professors I spent my time with. Dr. Mike Mattison, Dr. Robin Inboden, Dr. Bob Davis, Prof. D’Arcy Fallon, Dr. Michael McClelland, Dr. Scot Hinson, Dr. Rick Incorvati, and Prof. Tom Stafford have all been extremely influential to me as a person and as a writer and student – I can’t thank them enough.

Some of my favorite memories are from Dr. Davis’s Beat class (the inspiration for my final honors thesis) and Dr. Inboden’s Women in Literature course where I engaged with my peers over all the books I love. From Dr. Inboden mistakenly telling us that one famous poet suffered a writing accident instead of a riding one, to Dr. Davis declaring the angel-headed hipster status of our class, to literally any of Dr. Hinson’s wonderfully terrible dad jokes – I have had more fun with my major than I ever thought possible.

Most importantly, my work through the English Department – with the Writing Center and Torch – have provided me with new experiences and a plethora of interesting ways to learn. I have gone to Chicago where I learned about directive tutoring over really good sushi; I have ventured to D.C. where I learned from other national student newspapers, talked to Edward Snowden, and stood in front of the White House right before our historically bad change in residents; and I have traveled to Lowell, Massachusetts where I met fellow fans of the Beat Generation, a thesis topic that would consume my senior year and personal development. Wittenberg, and the English Department, have opened my eyes to what is not only possible, but what is left to discover.


Unfortunately, it’s now time to move on, and I carry with me the linguistic skills, writing proficiency, and assuredness of character that the English Department has provided me. I’m not sure what’s after this, besides California and new adventures, but I am motivated by the bright words of Jack Kerouac: “I don’t know but we gotta go.”

Matchbook Poems: ‘Hook, line, sinker’

At Thursday, April 12th’s Matchbook Poetry event, many students came forward to read poems as created from the lines in their matchbooks. Some have asked that their poems be shared on Witty English, so over the course of the rest of the semester, these poems will be released in installments.

Here is the sixth installment of the matchbook poems, senior Drew Pool’s poem: ‘Hook, line, sinker.’

They said they still love you.
Just needed some time to figure things out.
They told others you were insane.
Denying every sweet nothing they whispered to you last time you spoke.

They said you will always be the one they think of for a future.
A wedding and children always something that would be shared.
They started dating again,
Between the lines of lies they sprouted to you.

They said they were just trying to mend,
But in the placing of their stitches,
They lacerated your heart.

They had your heart in the palm of their hands.
Instead of caring they placed a hook,
Line and sinker.
To drag you down to the depths of depression,
Mental degradation and pain the only result.

You were asked how you could not be getting the hint!
When they were giving you facts to contradict them.
You were pulled in close with a kiss,
They would later compare you to a rapist for the kiss born of a promise to rekindle
The love you once had.

You started to mend.
They came back again.
In your naive heart you opened up again.
They ripped you up again.

Time and time again
There were millions of chances.
They had every single one.
They stretched the never ending line,
Until it broke.

Now you are a husk.
Unable to open up like before,
Unable to love like before,
Unable to commit when commitment was your key promise before,
Until all that you can say to any chance at love is,
I’m sorry.

Saying Goodbye: Stephanie McGregor, ’18

Dr. Lori Askeland’s class on Native American Literature was life changing for me. It opened my eyes to ongoing Native American issues and gave me a deep appreciation for their literature, oral storytelling traditions, and diverse cultures. Last summer, I volunteered in Washington State through Lutheran Indian Ministries at the Makah, Quileute, and Hoh Reservations. I was invited to a healing drum circle, told stories by elders about their cultures, and got to see some of those same stories play out in their dances. By permission of an elder, I also got to see the only Quileute “story rock” petroglyph in existence.

When I returned to Ohio, my research turned to the Southwest Tribes. My senior thesis focused on “Ceremony” from my first class with Dr. Askeland, and “Yellow Woman and A Beauty of the Spirit,” a book that Dr. Scot Hinson loaned me after I was having difficulty understanding the Laguna Pueblo traditions (both books by Leslie Marmon Silko).


In researching for my thesis I was completely taken in by the Native American storytelling traditions shared with me. Through these experiences I have made lasting friendships with the Makah and Quileute communities and have begun to make contacts in the Navajo Nation concerning teaching positions. None of this would have happened without Dr. Askeland and Dr. Hinson. If that course had not been offered, and if I had not been able to freely discuss with them the literature I’d been devouring, my life would be entirely different right now.

Wittenberg professors and support staff have helped me make informed decisions on which career path I wanted to pursue, and directed me to classes that would help me achieve my goals. When I started this, I was just hoping to finish my degree and get a better job. Now I’m pursuing opportunities to teach reading on a Native American reservation.

Matchbook Poems: ‘Hypocrite’

At Thursday, April 12th’s Matchbook Poetry event, many students came forward to read poems as created from the lines in their matchbooks. Some have asked that their poems be shared on Witty English, so over the course of the rest of the semester, these poems will be released in installments.

Here is the fourth installment of the matchbook poems, sophomore Veda Krumpe’s poem: ‘Hypocrite.’

The cigarette smoking coming off her smells like expensively cured cheese.
But it doesn’t really matter because you wanna screw and it’s night and she’s a girl.
You size her up: her thighs, her arms, down to the sweat that’s glistening on the bags of her eyes
The red traffic light being all you have to see
Cause she’s sitting on a curb in a California street.

Like momma always told you, “it’s what’s inside that counts.”
But you know that’s a little more than wrong
Because if it were true you’d be attracted to both sexes.

But you’re not. Because the outside matters, too, you know.
So you keep sizing her up and begin to imagine how easy it would be;
No strings attached, you think. A small price, a bang, and then back to “real life”

And what is that price?
Well she’ll take things other than money, just so long as it has value.
And you think again, no strings attached.

It’s your first time, so it’s a little strange.
Not your first time with a woman, but your first time nonetheless.
And up close, you can taste the cigarettes,
the light is yellow now
neither of you are on the curb anymore.

And then bam!!
Three months later
She’s got pants instead of hot shorts
and you see her in the sun
She’s not that pretty, but she’s not that ugly either.

Her lack of ugliness is the only thing you had to be thankful for
When she tells you
You knocked up the whore on the side of the road.

And while you, the real you, the ones listening to me
Say “I’m not him. Shame on him. I’m not her. Shame on her,”
Realize that hypocrisy is the only commandment you follow

Because this is Genesis 38.