Book Cover I've always considered terribly melodramatic poetry to be an inescapable rite of passage for teenagers. All that angst has to go somewhere, you know, and more often than not it ends up scrawled in a black velvet notebook from Waldenbooks, peppered with a few Morrissey quotes to round things out. Maybe I'm generalizing, but come on--we've all been there, right?

So I'm completely floored by 16-year-old Jillian Clark's totally kick-ass poetry. I stumbled across Clark's poems in 3AM Magazine and subsequently her book if i am in a room full of people, i am not having any fun, just absolutely dumbfounded by the clarity of her writing. Honest, sarcastic, hilarious--the sort of stuff my teenage self certainly felt but could've never put into words. Phrases like i just want to study/and drink capri sun/and feel like a three year old make me feel like crying even now, and when she ends the same poem this was not actually a poem/this is actually the truth it doesn't even feel melodramatic...it just feels true. How did this awesome girl avoid the liquid liner hell of bad teenage poetry? I'm way jealous (and way girl-crushing).

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Check out Clark's book and blog . And fight the urge to dig out your high-school journals; if you're anything like me, it'll just be painful.

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