living in the darkness

so much has happened

so much has not

through it all i held a light

to keep me steady through the night

this world is darkness

has nothing for me

.

.

.

.

so i will hold onto the Light


photo and content
Christina Alexandru © 2021 All Rights Reserved
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Germany in my pocket

A short story taken from my journal. Enjoy.

Walking down the block with my little sister, the wind whipped and snatched at our hair. It was a rather windy day, but we still wanted to walk. Walking down the block was our thing in the suburbs. My little sister’s hair, good for her, was in a ponytail, so she had a pretty clear line of sight, unlike myself whose strawberry blonde hair relentlessly covered my face like it was some annoying sticky seaweed that clings to your skin and snatches around your ankles in Lake Michigan. My hands stopped flapping around my face to remove hair strands. I figured I’d just let it be. There’s really no use in trying to fix your hair in a windy Chicago suburb. No point. Move on. Let the hair fly, people. So I stuffed my hands in my pockets, letting its furry warmth settle around my fingers. Chicago does that cruel thing to you— suddenly changes its mind about the weather and changes from 50 degrees one day to 10 degrees the next day with snow. Now that’s just rude, Chicago.

I felt around in my pockets; my fingers are not the only ones hibernating there. I feel something like paper and something hard and sharp. I fidget with the items before deciding to just take them out and see what long forgotten objects there are.

Taking out the first two sharp objects, I recall them right away.

“Oh yeah!” I smile and stride toward my sister who was a few feet ahead of me.

“I got these from Germany. ” I nudged her. “We were walking on a rocky path to a castle and I picked this up thinking they were probably like hundreds of years old. Doesn’t look special, but can you believe that, like hundreds of years old?”

I give it a little toss and catch it.

My little sister giggled and said, “You should have also taken the water, and the soil, oh, and a tree, AND a plant while you were at it.”

“Rats. Good idea.”

Next object I select from my pocket are coins.

“Oh look, it’s my 20 euro cent,” I said, continuing to search my coat pockets, then taking out another coin. “And a 10 euro cent from Germany!”

Almost immediately my little sister opened her palm to collect them. I rolled my eyes. She’s relentless.

“They’re mine, sorry.”

Her palm reached my nose.

I shrugged. “Fine, Bird Queen. You’re going to put them in your coin collection?”

“Yeah,” she said with pride.

After we turned around the block to head back home, my left hand returned to my coat pocket.

“Hey, there’s one last treasure here. I wonder what it is.”

“Don’t tell me it’s…”

I took it out, and we both looked at it. It was a candy. Actually, it was a cough drop with yellow flowers on the wrapping. Squinting at the very long and small words, I confirm the language.

“Yep. It’s German.”

My little sister replied, “Oh my gosh. You have Germany in your pockets.”

A Prayer

I am touched by dreams and daydreams but let me always be led by You. Come settle, God, deep in my bones.  Amen. Watercolor illustration inspired by Return by Aaron Becker 

Calling the Future

Calling the Future Taken at WNDR Chicago 2019

Calling the Future Taken at WNDR Chicago 2019
Christina Alexandru © 2020 All Rights Reserved

How can we call the future when the pandemic has changed so much around us?

The pressing issues in our COVID-19 New World are outstandingly real, provocative even; better yet, transformational and devastating. There are a few views you can choose to have. Positive or negative. Right? Yet, maybe a mix of the two is healthier. Whatever your perspective or mentality during these unpredictable times, would you do me a favor? Would you share with me or a friend, right here & right now, a kind and gentle note that could possibly be a seed of light for our future?

Who are you, I wonder? What are your dreams and goals and how have they changed? Or, maybe you’re reading this and already have a good job. Let’s say you’re in a safe and steady place. Now imagine yourself in the opposite, unable to provide fully for your loved ones, working a temporary job that you can get laid off from at anytime. This is us at the moment. All of us. This is the world. How can you help someone today? What if it started with sharing your story? Your true and vulnerable story about how you got started, where you began and who you’ve become through trial and error, success and failure. Suffering is real. Don’t hide it.

Tell me your story.

As a twenty-five-year-old growing creative professional, writing specialist, aspiring children’s book author, and content producer, I feel more isolated than ever before. I have never yet obtained the opportunity to enter the gates of my desired industry. Will it ever come now? I don’t know. What I do know is that I’m a little stuck at home, pouring my energy into what counts, but boy, is it exhausting. Our economy and our people are suffering. This is certain. And I’ve recently realized I lost a sense of my community, as well. In the words of my friend Katherine, “These times are so socially isolating.” After she said this to me I felt better. I know she understands it too.

Pleased to have graduated with my Master’s in December of 2019, I gained one tremendous achievement; but almost immediately after, lost another. That hurts. You know the feeling. You’re here in this unknown place, too. Hang in there. I remember in the beginning of COVID, I surprisingly transitioned and adapted very well. It happened quick, and I was on board with the new rules. Soon I was meeting my writer’s group online, and I felt that this meeting online thing had several advantages to it. Then I gained an opportunity to teach online, and I became more tech-savvy than ever before. But then, unemployment struck me again, like an uppercut blow. If you’re in a similar industry, profession, or recently graduated like me (or you’re in a different industry, but still dealing with unemployment), you can sympathize. I want to hear from you. What is your story? What are you looking for? Community? A chance? Belonging? Just a job to provide for your own family?

Let’s not forget to be a light toward one another, help each other network, and just remain hopeful, calling forth our future. Together.

Excerpt from Crossing Thresholds: my father’s story

From the train station, my father waited by the side of a dirt road for a ride, any ride, his final ride. A middle-aged man picked him up and drove him to the towns gas station, pointing out where to go should he be interested in crossing the border. My father walked firmly to wire fence that stood approximately 200 meters away. The fence didn’t even have barbed wire on the top. Eyes pressed into his back as he climbed over the fence, a tingle in his hands. There was no looking back. He walked through the forest for twenty minutes or so until the trees had cleared. Then my father found another fence to jump, and ran through another area of forest, realizing this was it. He was crossing the border into Italy. Looking in the distance above the tops of the trees, he saw the border patrol towers with snipers lingering out of the windows. He could feel his heart ripping out of his chest, but he only heard the pounding of his feet charging, running as far away as he could from the towers, from his nightmares … from the oppression. Suddenly, there was a woman in sight. Italy? Italy? He asked franticly. She nodded, si,si. Italy. My father chuckled, jumped for joy, and he was happy.

Christina Alexandru © 2020 All Rights Reserved

This short story has been completed as of Summer 2020; if you’re interested in reading it, please contact Christina; thank you!