envelop instagram twitter linkedin facebook youtube triangle-down triangle-left triangle-right triangle-up article map-marker chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up youth-passageways-nameplate lil-guy dashboard map

Before (or After) Daring a Crossing

Remember how after our young questers came back

sun-bleached, tarps flapping

sand everywhere;

twelve, thirteen year old bodies

burning with ancient

stories of sacred nothings:

drawings of peanut butter and ketchup sandwiches

and faces on buoys,

dick jousting and sand-circle twirling,

freezing bedtime sand holes,

counting the stars all night long~

from sunrise to sunrise

alone, fasting, by the seal-wild



Remember how we told them ~

after they told us

their stories

ahowl with wolf and dead-whale calls,

lunar raccoon wanderings and stick-and-

stone boundaries:

to only let in/ the ones who they chose/ to let in;


Remember how we told them ~

because we longed for them to know ~

the way songs know

the way bones know

the way we all once knew / before we were counseled out of that kind of knowing~

Not to quit at the first misunderstanding

or at the tenth: “what are you talking about?”

or the hundredth: “what happened to you?

can’t you just be normal again?”;


Maybe you will be too much

for the world you’re returning to;

Yes, maybe you will …

But what you’re bringing back

that “too much”

that “too much”

is exactly what this world needs.


We need most

what we are the least prepared for.

This moment ~ Do I go or do I not go?

They think I’m crazy

How will I be able to come back? ~

I think,

is like that;


Like the rotting bone-hung whale we sat by,

thirteen-year-old Mononoke

sketching it so carefully,

so she wouldn’t forget

that what happened out there

was real.

<Back to the Issue

About the Author: Kineret Yardena

Kineret Yardena lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she is a youth worker and poet.
She loves galloping on horseback through the desert arroyos, and the smell of juniper at sunset. She wishes no kid ever hurt from that deep kind of loneliness that makes us feel we don't even belong to ourselves. And she believes that beauty has the power to bring us back to that which matters most.

Youth Passageways Blog

Welcome to the Blog. Here you will find current and archived versions of our ENewsletters, Updates, and posts from partners, and guests.

Interested in contributing to our blog? Contact us at: dane@youthpassageways.org

Youth Passageways is thrilled to provide a platform in which a wide breadth of perspectives can commingle and paint as comprehensive a picture of our partner base as possible. As such, the views and opinions expressed in individual letters, posts, or media content of any kind do not necessarily reflect or represent the Youth Passageways network as an organization, or collective.

Back to top