Book Creator

The Tabard

by Doug Blackburn


Blacksburg High School 2023
Literary Magazine
The Tabard
Colors of Life Issue
To The Tabard
Geoffrey Chaucer started his collection of tales in an inn called Tabard. His story changed the English language and literature. For many years the Blacksburg High literary magazine was called the Tabard in honor of this literary milestone that was the initial setting for stories of a variety styles, themes, genre, and audience.
We, the Journalism class of Blacksburg High, decided to bring back this magazine as a yearly production to show our variety of artistic and literary skills and achievement.
The theme this year is "the color of life". Life is beautiful, dark, brilliant, sad, and wonderful all at the same time. Each facet different. Each color a unique flower. Each piece a part of the mosaic that is life.
Section 1.
Personal Essays
Section 2.
Poetry of life
Section 3.
Non Fiction
Section 4.
Short story
Section 5.
Poetry of Love
Section 6.
Faculty submissions
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Essays and narratives reflecting personal growth and experiences.
Picture by Edmund Guthrie
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The Time My Friend and I Broke Up Our Friendship
Mason Lydia
They say friendship is the best thing and that it will last forever but I care to
disagree with that saying. My friend Jane and I met during science class in
freshman year and we started to hang out more as the days went by. But during
the friendship I came to the conclusion that people can easily hide their true
self for a long period of time but it is only a matter of time before you see
their true side but it’s already too late.
First, I was a sophomore in Blacksburg High School and it was the fall of 2021 and my
best friend Jane and I had social studies together along with her boyfriend. It
was the first few weeks of class and all three of us were sitting at a table
together making jokes about each other. Well her boyfriend suddenly called me a
name that hurt my feelings and she laughed at it and seemed to like that he
called me that. It felt weird at the time and I should have said something at
that moment but I just smiled and started to watch videos on my phone trying to
push the moment out of my brain. After school I tried to talk to her about it
but my mom was picking me up so I did not have the chance to and it felt like a
war going on inside my head. That night after school I finally texted her about
it asking “Why did you let your boyfriend call me that” and when I sent that
message I suddenly got this anxious feeling in my stomach when I saw that she
replied to the message. The text she sent said “You shouldn’t really care about
what he says besides I yelled at him about it after class.”
As a result of that text I tried my best to believe that she meant that but it
seemed weird to me and I explained the whole situation to my mom the next day
before school and she told me “If she is not sticking up for you at that moment
then she is not doing it at all.” That was a really hard pill to swallow
because this was my best friend, we were talking about and the more I thought
about it the more upset I became at Jane. The next two weeks Jane and I were
going back and forth with each other about the whole situation, me trying to
get an explanation about why she didn’t stick up for me and her always sending
the same message “I talked to him about it after class” or “It wasn’t my place
to confront him about it.” The whole mess felt draining to me because Jane never
gave me a straight answer about what she did. It always felt like she was
dodging the question and making excuses about her boyfriend’s actions and why
she said nothing about it.
Finally, after a few days of us going back and forth with each other Jane messaged me
saying “Well if you didn’t act like one then he wouldn’t have called you that.”
That felt like a shot to the heart, my best friend who is supposed to have my
back is fully blaming me for the situation and that in her mind I deserved to be called the name her boyfriend called me. I finally was done with me and Jane
going in circles about the situation and I waited a few days to reply back to her to think of the right thing to do and say. During the final day of school
before we left for winter break I messaged Jane telling her that I was done with the friendship and we would not be speaking to each other again and I had
this feeling of content about it. In my own opinion I should have talked to her about it in person instead of being a chicken to confront her in person and
telling her face to face how much the situation hurt me and how it made me feel. That decision would've been smarter than messaging her through the phone
and blocking her on every social media app and it would have made everything more understandable from both parties involved.
This situation taught me to be more careful about who I make friends with and get to
know them better before ever starting a friendship with them. I learned that a person can easily change their stripes and be a nice person one day but in
reality they could care less about what one goes through and will not be there all the time like they promise. A person can be an amazing person when you
first meet them and it’s fun and exciting finding someone with the same interest but the more you hang out with them the more you see their true nature
and realize everything is really too good to be true.
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YOU Don't Need Anyone!
The influence of a significant male role model starts in early childhood. Having a strong figure for support and guidance increases our ability to form trusting relationships and builds our capacity to interact positively with others.
Continuing to fail as a mother to a son that lost his father at the time he needed him most. It taught me that I don't need anyone, I can take care of myself and the ones around me. It showed me that I was the backbone of my family after my fathers passing. Somehow for 2 weeks out of every month I was financially supporting her, the other 2 weeks we had the social security checks that paid the bills. After that I was on my own working 35 plus hours a week while in school. Still getting used by my own mother. I wouldn't have had a problem if she would've let me take care of the stuff we needed, but I guess she believed that her wants came before our needs. I still made it work. I couldn't deal with the stress she put on me at fourteen-seventeen because she thought she had always had it on her. It has not and was never on her. She taught me that it is always somebody else’s fault not yours. She taught me how to lie, she taught me how to
connive, she taught me that everybody was against me, she taught me how to manipulate people, then used it against me. I guess you could say she showed me the world before I wasn’t even able to understand but it never felt right. I would not listen to her, she always said I was the worst and I was just like my father. I realized at a young age she was not right. I realized she had nothing for me and that she saw I was different so she tried to ruin me. She tried so hard to ruin my name. She tried everything she could to keep me in this town. She wanted me to stay by her side and make her look better knowing she didn't do any of the good that raised me. She was glad when my father passed, because she saw me actually struggle and she attacked me while I was at my lowest point in life. At the age of fourteen my father passed and he left us a good amount of money. I always questioned why he was working so much and why he was never home. I realized it on March 14, 2020. He knew he was sick, he didn't think there was anything the doctors could do to help. No I didn't need him but I wanted him to be home to stop her from doing what she was doing. He was at every game I played, he was at most of the school events I was in. He took care of us, and mother’s drug abuse/addiction. He made it work, it made him work constantly. Going in at five a.m. and coming home at eleven p.m. He never once complained about it even though I saw the hate in his eyes, the struggle, the grief.
Nobody tried to help, when someone did Misty pushed and pushed till they stopped. She pushed everyone away, even her side of the family. I hated her for him. I still do to this day, I know she has her mental issues but she doesn't want to get better. My father taught me the most valuable lesson I think anyone can learn: it's that you do not need someone to help you. It is easier with someone that has the same wants and motivation that you do, but no matter what you should never give up, never stop wanting what you want. My father was a man of few words, but everything he taught me has stuck with me through the years. During his funeral, of course I was dead inside, I was emotionally stuck, I had no other choice but to cry… Yet, time and time again she never fails to make it about herself, telling me to suck it up. From that day on I knew that I would and could never truly love the woman that birthed me again. The next three years felt like the worst place on Earth. I did everything in my power to stay away. I practically lived with my brother that summer, and everyday I didn't go to school on the hybrid days. She just couldn't stand someone else finishing/fixing what she tried to raise. She again pushed him away and blamed it on him and the child that wasn't even born yet. She had everyone of her boyfriends try to be my father–I didn't let that stand once. I was friends with one, but he knew that he wasn't and couldn't be my father. He never went outside his boundaries. She tried to make him. He would not.
One day I just got tired of it to the max, so my sister left while i was at work. Misty came to my work place and said, "Do I want my stuff?" and I said “yes now leave me alone”. We went to our brothers and stayed there for about a week, then she forced us to come back. I called DSS multiple times to get us out. All they did was check the house. Never questioned us or anything. One day my mother planted weed in the car I drove to school. She had it searched but she moved the car off school property so I wasn't held responsible. That day was not fun, the school called DSS and told them basically misty abandoned us, and that they weren't allowed to let us leave with anyone. They tried to get her to let us stay with our brother for the time being but she was not ok with that. My sister and I stayed in a group home for about three days before the state gave custody to my brother. We have been there every day since.
The entire moral of the story is I have had a rough few years and I have still pulled through and somehow kept going after I've seen the worst of life at a young age. Nobody should have to bury their parents at that age, but if one day you do they would not want you to stop pushing even if you basically are doing it alone and raising your little sibling at the same time.