The prompt was: In 250 words, answer this question: How old would you be if you didn’t know your real age?
Here is what we received in return.
My Age by Sarah D.
My mother has always looked younger than she was, even now as she closes in on 60. People used to think my brother and I were her siblings instead of her children. I don’t know what kind of magical genes she has, but I have inherited them. I have always had a baby face, and a tiny voice. Being the new girl in Portland, no one knew how old I really was. When people talk to me, they guess 23. When I tell them 28, I always get a look of surprise and disbelief. I don’t feel 28, but I don’t feel 23 either. Some days I imagine I am still 19, although I know I have changed so much since then. If I had no concept of age, or any knowledge of how old I was, I would still imagine myself being in my 20’s. Older than my teenage self, but not quite a grown up. Somewhere in between having no idea who you are, and knowing exactly that.
33 to 17 by John I.
If I didn’t know I am 33
I would still be 17 wearing
beat-up high-tops with sharpie-colored soles.
I would still have hair on my head,
but it would be hidden under a cut-off
sweatpant leg that I pull over my eyes
my teacher throws a chalk-rag
at my head.
It’s the same now as it ever was;
deficits of attention translated into financial debts
as I age. Doodles in the margins of homework pages
Become entire notebooks. My entire life,
inside a notebook, spiral-bound, perfect-bound,
sharpie-colored, reckless daydream.
One Page Wednesday
April 4, 2018
Writers, escape the solitude of your desk. Readers, come hear great fresh…
Everybody Reads 2018
April 5, 2018
In partnership with Multnomah County Library and The Library Foundation, Literary Arts is…
LOOK ALIVE OUT THERE: Sloane Crosley in Conversation with Chuck Klosterman
April 19, 2018
This event is free, but space is limited. Pre-order a $26 copy…
Oregon Book Awards Fiction and Poetry Finalists reading
April 25, 2018
Featuring: manuel arturo abreu Omar El Akkad Samiya Bashir Allison Cobb Wayne…
April 26, 2018
Come celebrate Portland’s creative youth during our seventh annual Verselandia! poetry slam.
Oregon Book Awards Ceremony 2018
April 30, 2018
Join Literary Arts’ annual celebration of the state’s most accomplished writers in…