FALL 2011




Solidus Online

J. L. Severance

Paradise of Strangers

Just waking up out of a coma, five years ago, I had trouble recognizing faces.
I still do, but whatever.
In the rehab center where I woke up, surrounded by expressionless people that were kind of like zombies, but quadriplegic zombies with tics that would make you think that they broke from a psychiatric unit, psychosis – insane in the brain.
Don’t give them sharp objects.
The staff of that establishment would use language, made it seem like the patients were chores to be said and done, like narcissistic buzzards watching over corpses rotting, sandy flesh strewn in the searing heat of the midday sun, just waiting for them to die.
The silence is deafening when you look at them, pounding like a great timpani drum as if at almost any moment, they’ll spring into life like a jack in the box, cracker jack, cereal prize.
This place is a lot like that place.
Paradise of strangers who are helpless to others who need it most crying at night so they won’t be seen; thinking the worst things with pointy objects clasped in their hands; sinking deep into the void of incurable despair to them. There is a light at the end of the tunnel so could you want to stay and play instead of to go with nothing to show?
The ones hardest to love need it most.


Jayme L. Severance

"Paradise of Strangers" is a slam poem authored by "jack of all trades" writer, Jayme Severance. He is what is known in popular scholastic culture, a "freshmore" - that is, he is a second semester sophomore during fall 2011, and emerges as a first semester junior during the spring of 2012. He is furthermore a member of the class of 2013 and a student of Creative Writing. Jayme has been a published poet since 2007, and appears in such publications as Manchester High School Central's, "The Oracle"; the 2009 issue of the Colby-Sawyer Alumni Magazine; and Illinois State University's electronic journal, Euphemism. In addition, in April 2011, He has had the opportunity to open for famous poet, Buddy Wakefield, by reciting a poem he authored in the moments preceding an interview for an article about him that appeared in the summer 2010 issue of the Colby-Sawyer Alumni Magazine