Question #1: Who’s the illustrator?
When I decided to start putting this book together, I knew I’d need help. I needed someone who could understand what I’m trying to get across in these poems and turn it into art. I immediately though of Faith. Her art is beautiful and simple, she’s a really good friend of mine, she’s beyond sweet and beyond hilarious. Working with her is a blast. I honestly think she’s gonna be super famous in no time at all. I’m honored that she took on this project with me, and that she does everything with excellence. She’s a real one & I love her to bits. If you wanna see some of her work, go check out @faith.draw!
The short answer: Faith Sizemore!!!!!!!
Hola! My name is Rivers Bliss. I’m an 18 year-old Texan with a passion for poetry. I started writing poems a few years ago when I was going through a rough patch, and now it’s become a way of life. Whether I write everyday or once a year, my poems capture a moment in time, a version of me that I’ll never quite be again. They are a way to see how far I’ve come and to see how far I want to go. They are my heart’s way of helping me understand and express everything. This book has been a long time coming, and I figured it’s about time I start making my dreams come true. If you’re here, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. Follow to stay updated!
An original photo of Cucamonga Peak, of the San Bernardino Mountains, and an original poem titled "Mountains"
What grand mountains,
San Bernardino Mountains
Standing beyond the ocean, and desert
Withstanding earthquakes, and other natural disasters
White with snow, black at night,
Forever with great might. .
Generations call home these mountains,
Others live within their reach,
Suburban homes, Mountain cabins
Snowboards, skis, weekend trips .
Visitors from near and far,
With views that reach beyond the urban horizon,
Touting with far-reaching expectations,
Hiking, biking, gazing at the stars, and the glowing moon
Soon it must be near,
Driving to the place, of paradise,
in the expanding metropolis
To which many call home
If my soul was the blanket that kept me warm, it has been unraveled, thread by thread, until there is nothing but holes left to cover me.
If my heart was the golden morning light cast from the sun, the clouds form thick and grey, fed by years of industrial pollution, until all that's left is a dim, dreary forecast.
If my bones were the architecture of the most beautiful buildings in Rome, they were used against their will to host battles, fought to death, and never cleansed of the thousands of dead bodies that litter the grounds.
If my brain was a network intrinsically linked to all species of every plant, animal, and fungi and the Amazon forest, is has been decimated by forces much too human, much too fragile, yet much too strong to stand against, and is left alone, with no hope to recover .
If my lungs are freefalling, pure, ecstatic bliss, faith in the backpack contraption, the parachute did not open, and concrete was the unexpected cause of my last exhalation.
If my hand was giving food to starving children, strong and proud of it's life's work, it did not know that the bag from which the food came had been poisoned, and those who I wished to help were only harmed, then it is now a burning sacrifice on an alter, one last failed attempt at redemption.
If my mouth was the source of the most beautiful melody ever sung, if it filled stadiums and ears of many, if it shattered glass and mended wounds; then my vocal chords were ripped from my throat in the middle of my finale, and oh what a finale it was. I am left choking, in agony, yet nobody seems to notice much more than the abrupt silence before they walk out. Silence doesn't keep people around.
And lastly, if my words were what saved me, if they were the only true love I've ever known; the papers on which they were written were lost to the wind, blown across the seas and deserts, back through time until they came upon a book burning, a time when all knowledge was erased from the Earth, and the evildoers had just enough flame left for a misunderstood little manuscript; no mercy for a martyr. No glory for the goner. No one who cares for the wisdom of the dead.