songs of youth | foreword

foreword: “The one consistency in my life, from childhood to the teenage years of angst and to the blooms of young adulthood, has been writing. I wrote to make sense of the world around me and of myself, I wrote to express myself, I wrote to connect to the world and to myself.

This is a collection of poetry written between the ages of sixteen and twenty. Brian Molko of Placebo, who was the soundtrack to my teenage years and the one who hypnotised me with rawness and alluring born-to-die sadness, once said that, when you are a teenager, you react to the world that surrounds you with great emotionality and intensity, with full heart. He mused that growing older is a process of finding semblances of sanity. This collection aims to illustrate exactly that; it is not written by an adult looking back with maturity, nor tenderness to their early years, but by the teenager who is in the midst of experiencing the turbulent highs and lows of being thrown into life.

This collection of poetry was a creative project I compiled as an undergraduate student of Creative Writing at Lancaster University. It includes unpublished work, as well as work that has already been published.

It is structured in three sections: ‘teenage angst’, ‘my loss is my root’ and ‘at last, light’, which chronicle the journey to adulthood through churn, grief, and joy.

You may notice that the poetry is written in lowercase. More than an aesthetic choice, lowercase marks the teenage search for identity and reflects how disconnected teenagers feel to themselves. As a teenager myself, I found it difficult to capitalise ‘I’-s, as it seemed as if I was proclaiming who I was before I knew.

This collection explores the beginning of the search for the ‘I’.


🕊 the cover art i fall in love with more and more every day is by Holly Robinson🖤🤍🖤



(u.k. links, do message me for the link if you are from another country & are interested in ordering 🖤 thank you so!!) 🕊

(on the night the witch was born) or (solaris) by Téa Nicolae

on the night the witch was born

her grandmother oiled her infant body

with poppy’s milk. as the concoction gently swirled

into the blood pouring from her mother’s womb,                           

her grandmother adorned her bare head

with flower garlands and carried her

into the woods. toes dug in damp Earth,

sacred chants glued to her lips,

the elderly witch drew in the Moon                           

and lifted the child to the Heavens.                   

the Divine Enchantress descended

before them, bracelets around Her ankles,

silkily playing her flute. She licked

Her index finger and placed it between

the new-born’s eyebrows, breathing

magick and abundance through her core.

with tender fingers,

the Enchantress weaved the web of her life,

as the maiden, the mother,

the matriarch and the crone

tangled themselves in her eyes.

the Moon, waxing and waning,

poured light on the crest of her head

and the Divine Enchantress sowed her heart

                                             with golden thread.

*poem published in volume XI of Skye Magazine. to me, it holds two titles: ‘on the night the witch was born’ and ‘solaris’.


i adore this poem poem & the illustration that accompanies it! it opened my final year collection of my undergraduate degree – an occult lyrical project entiteld ‘Hymns ot the Divine Enchantress’, which was centred on illuminating the female esoteric experience. it is so moving to me to finally see it in print! thank you so much, Skye Magazine!

Skye’s beautiful illustration:

and the poem’s original moon format.


xanax, side effects

*poem published in L. C. three years ago. it feels like a glimpse into another life…

when i was on xanax

my brain curled into itself


everything was numb

and nothing hurt.

my therapist had prescribed three doses of 0.25mg per day to me.

each morning

i would swallow a first dose


at 8:54

and i would carry off with my morning routine, while mentally rewinding the side effects.


i roll in my sheets, patting the mattress, searching for my phone


i double-press snooze

changes in patterns

i fall on my back in bed, bringing my knees to my chest

clumsiness and unsteadiness

i doze off


i jerk as the alarm goes off

feeling sad and empty

snooze snooze snooze

shakiness, an unsteady walk

i rub my eyes. there’s a small ache in the back of my head. feels like it’s melting my thoughts apart.

slurred speech

i jump as the alarm rings for the third time.

(less common side effects)

loss of self-control

i search for a pair of panties to match my mood. grey

loss of coordination

i pull a shirt over my head

loss of memory

i flatten the wrinkles with my hands

loss of voice

i apply foundation unevenly

muscle stiffness

i press my nose to my mirror. i stare at my glazed eyes as i swallow my first dose.

i got off xanax because

while my insides didn’t clench anymore

my eyes could still see

the hurt.

brief sonnet to sorrow by téa nicolae















* original format:

* happy december, my loves! as 2020 is slowly coming to end, i am bringing back this poem which was published on The Writing Disorder in summer, as i believe that it encapsulates my year beautifully; fully.