Layla McFalls
issue 01
Nonesuch exists to encourage and celebrate original pieces of beauty, mystery, and clarity as a means of worshipping our Creator who loves us as fellow creators. It provides a safe and respected platform for students and teachers at Chattanooga Christian School to take risks in sharing their work.
Spring 2020
Matilda Green
Director, 2019-2020
Dear reader,
Making art takes a lot of close-looking. As I put together the magazine, getting to know each piece, matching and unmatching, reading and looking closely, I’m really proud of the gentle, watchful work the artists have done. Together, they form a collection defined by attention and self-awareness. This is evidence of how creativity is a tool you use to know yourself and others deeper. This watchful creation reminds me of our own Creator who notices every detail of our lives. Just as Hagar named him El Roi or “The God Who Sees Me”, children of God should recognize His powerful attentiveness. He sees us and He longs to commune with us. (That’s why he sent Jesus!) 

By practicing watchful creating, we learn to commune with Him. By doing this faithfully, we answer his second command of resting in Him. The school year of 2019-2020 was different than any other, but the calling remains the same: to rest in Him and be reminded that we should always.

I pray you read with watchfulness, vulnerability, and rest.
Table of
Lauren McNeese


Matilda Green

Layout and Design:
Mrs. Mia Baker

Selection Committee:
Jolie Adams, Flannery Lowe, Jenna Miller, Gwen York

Advisor, Editor: 
Mr. Chris Slaten
Ice Cream Soup
Written by Will Daniel
Chapter 01
Upon the inquiry of the meaning “poetry”
Chase Whitener
Someone once asked me
“Why do you enjoy this laboring task: ‘Poetry’”

At first I knew not the answer
It was far from me,
So I replied carelessly
“I donno.”

But today, the last day required,
I have found its generous meaning.

It’s not lines written in correct syntax,
Or fancy phrases from middle english,

It is the marvelous conversation
With self and with one’s Creator
About love,
Truth, and
The small ordinary things
That mean the most to us.

It’s the screaming of one’s soul
Into the dead of night
Like an injured dog
Screaming for help.

It’s an expression of hate
Or it’s the tender love felt
In between mankind,
His creator, and his creator’s creation.

It’s your wedding night,
It’s cold winter mornings,
It’s roasting,
It’s your favorite ice cream,
It’s hate towards one’s enemies.
It’s forgiveness of sins,

It’s your heart written for others to hear
And to see.

Iced Mocha
Ava Killian
Flannery Lowe
i've got a plan for after school
i’ve been thinking about it a lot
an apartment in a city 
l.a. or new york 
drinking red bull out of china teacups and arguing about aesthetics
thrifting our clothes and having photo shoots
walking to coffee shops and falling in love with everyone we see
you’ll read the classics
to better be pretentious
i’ll listen to my music about the end of the world
you can dry flowers and hang them on the walls
i think i’ll cut all my hair off
or at least most of it
we can discuss philosophy in a waffle house parking lot 
and start a band, i’ll design the posters
and have vinyl records and windows to let in the sun
i’m not sure when
or how
but i’m not sure about anything right now 
so i keep coming back to the apartment in the city 
7 PM
Jenna Miller
A Car Fire as a Hot Shower
Addison Howard
A car fire as a hot shower
Hot, steamy, dangerous
Melting, glimmering, murderous
Sometimes there’s explosions
It’s a messy cleanup
You’d think water could fix everything
Little Sprout
Brady Neighbors
When a mother redwood drops a seed
It soon becomes the ground’s feed.

It starts off as a little seed
But bursts out of its pod when it needs.
It grows from a leaf to a twig,
then it goes from small to big.
Limbs grow and stretch out
and even begin to sprout.

The mother says to the sprout,
“Sometimes in life one can doubt
But need not worry my little sprout.
The earth will shape you along
and you will grow big and strong.
Your bark will be thick and rough
so fires won’t be tough enough,
the fire of life won’t reach your core.
And those who try to cut you down will need more,
more than a saw to make you fall
because you are thick and tall.
Life is sprinkled with doubt
so do not worry my little sprout.
You will grow to surpass even me.
You will be a big strong tree.
And all the trials will shape who you be.”
Delaney Tallent

s a flower blooms
or a tree blossoms,
it changes and
it becomes more beautiful.

as a person changes,
they blossom as well and
the closer they’ll get
to the best version of themselves.

Rose Vos
Birmingham Botanicals
Lauren McNeese
Ava Killian
I look around 
At the group of people
Sitting in this living room 
Wearing costumes
Disguised as persons who are not their own.
And I am thankful
That I get to know
The wonderful people they are
Behind the masks. 
Lauren McNeese
by Oracal from the album Wic
Composed by Charlie Green
Chapter 02
Heavy Eyelids
Emmy Hubbard
These heavy eyelids
that come to remind us we have to rest
that our big plans can wait
and what we have accomplished is enough for a day
for even Jesus who had humanity to save

Jenna Miller
Delaney Tallent
Adead drug addict
A rich company owner who golfs with Peyton Manning
A dedicated nun
A criminalized couple
A guy named Bob
A family of 10 that lost everything to a hurricane
An insane old lady who talks to her imaginary friends
A grandma with dementia
A grandfather who took his own life
A little girl with Down Syndrome

That’s a lot of different people.
Nothing’s the same except for that
they’re all connected to me.
That’s my family:
my uncles and aunts, my grandparents, my cousins, my sister.

Family is a variety of lives, 
and stories 
that happened to be connected by blood, 
an inevitable string.

I’ll Figure It Out
Summer Jones
When discouragement comes, I feel it in my stomach
When inspiration arrives, I feel it in my hands
When joy shows its face, I feel it in my heart
When frustration peeks out, I feel it in my jaw
When stress squeezes in, I feel it in my brain
I'll be honest
I like controlling these things
But I loathe when they control me
So therefore here they are
On this paper.
I put them there,
But they led me.
Kali Vaughn
I sit back and watch
I can't wait to see
What’s happening to everyone else, except to me
With social media, magazines, and lies on tv, 
We can’t help but find someone else to be
Charity Armao
Jada Tun
Still Yours
Emmy Hubbard
there are millions I will never look into
there are exactly the same amount that will never look into mine
but I wonder
how many times I have looked into yours I’ve seen them watered with tears,
wide with laughter,
soft with love,
and even now, still with anger,
I remember they’re still your beautiful eyes
Charity Armao
Where I’m From
Chase McBryar
I am from Xbox 360,
from NCAA Football 14 and Lego Star Wars.
I am from the tall backyard oak trees. 
(Dark, leaning, bark like stiff sandpaper.)
I am from ball dirt and grass stains, 
late nights and early mornings on the field with lifelong friends.
I’m from college football Saturdays and yes sir, no ma’am lectures.
From Papa Cobby and Papa Larry.
I’m from Christmas Eve movie night and Saturday night cookouts,
from “Life ain’t easy” and “Rub some dirt on it.”
I’m from the right side of the ninth row of an old baptist church with a backcountry, West
Virginian Preacher.
I’m from Lookout Valley and Wildwood, Georgia,
Nana’s barbecue baked beans and Papa’s freshly brewed afternoon coffee.
From the smalltown high school football glory stories of my Papa,
the chainsaw scars on my dad’s left arm.
The bookshelf crammed full of photo albums in my grandparent’s house,
and the trophy case on display in the corner of my bedroom.
I am from these moments,
as they have been the greatest memories made with the greatest people.
Gone, but Not Forgotten
Rose Vos
Jada Tun
Sydnee Tallent
“What’s wrong?”
Everything. “Nothing.”

“What’s behind your back, young lady?”
A broken glass vase. “Nothing.”

“Did anything happen at school today?”
I failed a test. “Nothing.”

“You’re hurt; you need to go to the hospital!” 
I should. I’m in so much pain. “Nah, it’s nothing.”

“Would you like anything to eat? I can cook up something really quick.”
I’m so hungry. I haven’t eaten anything today. “Nothing for me, thanks.”

“Wow, that stunt was impressive!” It was so cool. I’m jealous of his ability. “That was nothing.”

“Haven’t you climbed high enough now?”
Yes, and I’m scared that I’m going to fall. “Nah, this is nothing.”

“We have leftovers in the fridge or you can make a sandwich.” 
I’m too lazy to cook anything. “Ugh, there’s nothing to eat in this house!”

Nothing always means something.
Chase Whitener
0, the number of degrees in kelvin which is unattainable

1, The number of choices that actually matter

1.62, the number of beauty
2, the number of the binary system in programming
2.76, the number of e
3, the number of the triune God

3.14, the number of π
4, the number of basic elements: matter, energy, space, time
5, the number of senses
6, the number of quarks

7, the number of days
8, the number of planets in the solar system
9, the number of fruits of the spirit
10, the number of the decimal system
11, the number that is forbidden in Spongebob Squarepants

12, the number of disciples
13, the number “whoops”
17, the number of years this man has been around the sun
29, the number of the year Jesus died and rose from the dead
42, the meaning of life according to The Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy
100, the number of cents in a dollar

420, hte mnubre fo edew
666, the number of the beast!
911, the number you call when you have an uh oh
1000, the number of reasons to not read this poem
1350, the number of the year a bunch of rats killed a third of Europe
1492, the number of the year some Spanish guy sailed to India but it was all a prank
1517, the number of the year Martin Luther wrote a break up letter to the Catholic church

1776, the number of the year England’s children ran away
2001, the number of years the human race has evolved passed Christ to produce me!
10,000, the number of reasons for my heart to find
100,000, the number of meters the FAI defines spaceflight to begin.
1,000,000, the number of gigabytes in the human brain
1,000,000,000, the number of months ago dinosaurs existed
4.54 billion, the number of the age of the earth
7.53 billion, the number of people in the world

13.76 billion, the number of the age of the universe
131 billion, the number of dollars Jeff Bezos had before he made a big oof
1 trillion, the number of net worth of Apple in dollars
37.2 trillion, the number of cells in your body
43252003274489856000, the number of possible combinations for the rubix cube 
6.022 × 10^23
, the number of atoms in 12g of a carbon 12 substance (a mole)
10^81, the number of atoms we know about in the universe
Googol, the number with 100 zeros with which Google named itself after
10^111 to 123, the number of different ways a chess game can be played

Churchill’s Calling
Lauren McNeese
At the end of his life, Winston Churchill retired to the Chartwell countryside,
Where he painted a goldfish pond.
It was described as honest, as revealing.
Who knew fish could be honest and revealing?

It isn’t just a pond; it’s very much more than that. 
To Churchill, to the viewer, to the goldfish, even. 
Deep down, beneath muted colors, there was something else, something swimming around, something that was unwanted, that was not supposed to be there.
Churchill painted with great precision, great detail, great pain.
Years earlier, Churchill lost a daughter at age two. Marigold, so named for the color of her curls. It is noted, that even on his deathbed, Churchill never stopped putting paint to brush to canvas, pouring out heart and soul into a depiction of his pond. Over twenty times, he painted the same pond.
And I wonder if maybe, we too, get trapped at times,
In a carousel of emotion.
Subconsciously painting, over and over again, ghosts of grief that haunt us just below the surface.
Beethoven Beats
Addison Howard
Chapter 03
Crumpled To-Do Lists
Emmy Hubbard
Save your crumpled to do lists
Keep them where you’ll see them
And whenever you're overwhelmed
Pull one out and laugh at it
Delight in how none of it has worried you 
since the day you finished it
And how time will go on 
And the long unfinished one on your wall
Will also be conquered

The Softest Touch
Lauren Kay
Sticky Notes
Lauren McNeese
Clutter the inside of my laptop
My planner
My dashboard.
Telling me of books to read,
Teachers I need to talk to,
Things I need to write,
Topics to research and
Academic resources to consult. 
One says to remember to get gas on my way home
Another reminds me to stop by the bank to withdraw money to get gas on my way home. 
The most ironic
I believe
Is the one I stuck to the back of my phone
Reminding me to get more sticky notes.

Taking Notes
Emmy Hubbard
I hope they know I'm noticing
Even if they're hardly acquaintances 
I'm taking notes on what they've figured out makes a good life
And someday soon 
I'll take all my collected puzzle pieces
And put together my own beautiful life
And start handing out pieces myself
Jungho Bae
lonely company
Lauren Kay
how come two empty souls can combine to become full
how come two broken people can combine to become whole
how come two lost people can find the same path
and how come truly good people can never make it last
you in all your fullness may have done all that you could
but only lonely people make each other understood
Modern Nighthawks
Lauren McNeese
Recycling Center
Matilda Green
Addison Howard
your greed is killing the economy
The Burger King Cashier said to me
All I asked for was a little ketchup
And what I received was a political catch-up
Maybe this is Symbolism
Heinz-57 killed Capitalism

The Stippled Man
Rose Vos
Emma Sprayberry
picture perfect
time taker
hardly hazardous
definitely dangerous
exceptionally egoistic

Allie Hamel
It was cold the winds were blowing
I had let him in without knowing
He took my heart and self-worth
He left me there broken and hurt 
I had no idea where he was going 
But I was broken and left hoping 
would he come back with my heart 
as of now, I had fallen apart

7 again
Katie Whitener
morning arrives and your heart doesn’t ache that you have to go to school 
roll out of bed onto still dirt stained feet from the afternoon before 
“I'm so excited” you giggle as you put your field day shirt on from the year before 
you slither mixed matched socks on over your feet and slip your dirty scuffed tennis shoes on
without tying them
your mom offers to wash them for you but having clean shoes back then was a crime
you head into the kitchen and eat your eggos with whipped cream cause you didn’t care about
the measurement of your waste
you scurry over to last nights spelling homework and shove it into your light backpack
on the car ride you look outside instead of your phone and see dragons and goblins instead of
tired people
you get to school and smile at everyone 
you’re not riddled with anxiety 
you’re not holding your breathe
you’re living and laughing
you’re okay
you run into your friends and laugh as loud as you want, there’s no need to think about how
others perceive you
the school day goes by oh so quick
you get home and drop your backpack off
immediately shoes are kicked off and it’s out to the grass
the silky cool blades run along your feet and between your toes as you chase your dog
the bark on the tree crumbles just a little bit as your hand grasps the branch
the woods are filled with shadows and mystery
you take a breather and lie on the driveway
the cement is warm on your body and you smile
a little family of ants is crossing just to your left
there’s a plane overhead and the thought of secret missions dazzles your imagination
then the sweet trusting sound of “it’s dinner time” is heard in the distance
if only to be carefree and happy
if only to be better
if only to be seven again

I Will be Content
Jenna Miller
I wonder what it's like to exist among the clouds. I know only what it feels like to be planted on the ground. I am one among the hidden, always in the shadow of great mountains like you. Many have found their home here, fingertips meeting flowers. Blooms and buds contain great beauty, but none compared to what's above. I belong above the mountaintops too- to touch the whispering clouds, feel the unobscured winds, and maybe follow the airborne path you take.

But maybe I should find beauty in breezes, rolling hills, and grass-stained clothing. Perhaps I should be guided by floating autumn leaves, and fog that travels with the faint voice of mystery, comfort, and all things earthly. My feet are planted firmly on this damp, dewey ground and I will disappear into the grey morning fog. The leaves will still rustle and fall. The winds will still blow. The clouds will still whisper.

I will be content in the grey morning fog.
Under the Sun
feat. Victoria Priest and Seaux Chill
Produced and performed by Mr. Andrew Meador
Chapter 04
It’s What I’m Good At
Jolie Adams
Ido all this work, but why?
If I’m not working toward anything, why even try?
I look around and it seems like everyone has it all figured out;
And here I am who knows nothing, I want to scream. I want to shout.
My prayers are filled with yearning.
Will what I love give me an earning?
Your book says, “Do not be anxious.”
Don’t You know? It’s the only thing I am good at.
Top Left: New York City
Jenna Miller
Top Right: Unfolding
Matilda Green
Bottom Left: Chimney Rock, NC
Addison Howard
Bottom Right: Fall
Ada Young
Faraway Dreams
Lauren McNeese
There was a Princess named Rosalie who, despite being little, dreamed very, very big.She had beautiful blue eyes and a light dusting of freckles across her face. She told me that she was going to grow up to be a chef, an artist, a ballerina. For a moment, I had more faith, somehow, in this little girl’s dreams than I did anything else. As we sat on a bench, as the autumn leaves fell and faded in the background, crunching under my feet, so did my previously conceived idea about what it meant to ‘grow up.’
At that moment I was sure that I couldn’t work in an office and sit in a cubicle all day, every day. At that moment I questioned my own plans; they had once been similar to hers: what had happened to them? To what faraway place had they travelled?
I decided, all at once, that I wanted to go where Princess Rosalie was going: building castles in the clouds, making fine food, creating beautiful artwork, and spinning in circles all the while. 
I wondered what it would take to re-discover that freedom; to be liberated  from expectations of who you were to become and where you were going to go. 

Delaney Tallent
I watched as she ran
to embrace her dad.
He laughed
She smiled
I don’t get it
Child of Dublin
Jenna Miller
The Disease
Allie Hamel
I walk down the hallways laughing 
Oblivious of the disease I’m catching
By the time I realize it’s too late 
I’ve become filled with jealousy and hate
Everyone else has it too
It spread around like the flu
I hope one day we will change
But as of now we have no vaccine
Variation on Robert Frost
Kyla Downs
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood.
I wished it had stayed as one
And we could travel it together.

Rather our paths diverged 
And we became separate travelers,
Walking down our own paths. 

They briefly intersect for small moments,
But quickly swing back wide,
Adding distance between.

The path was lonely at first.
The trees blocked out any glimpse of light,
But there was nowhere to go but forward. 

As time went on, the sun shone more often,
And my paths converged with others.

Now I walk down a wide path
With many other travelers. 
They support me when I trip
And offer guidance when I become lost. 

Suddenly I realize that this new path
Is smoother and wider than the old one.

Jane Monahan
First comes
Second comes
Third comes 
Soul-straining regret:
The kind that 
Festers until it 
Seems as if all 
Of the waves crash
Into you at one 
Fixed moment &
Quite suddenly,
You forget how 
You were taught
to swim.

Falling late
Summer Jones
The leaves are their own.
Few choose to remain,
Their counterparts choose to change
But regardless of their choice
The soft and warm voice
Of the sun covers them like a blanket
Until the moon comes to tuck them in bed. 

The Musical I Saw Last Night
Kyla Downs
Last night I heard the people sing.
I listened to them cry for revolution,
And watched them die for what they believed. 
I see Javert give up on his hunt,
Succumbing to the voice in his head.
That he wasn’t good enough,
He was a failure.

How similar to the devil,
Feeding us lies.
Trying to tell us who we are,
And what we deserve.
At the end Eponine sacrifices herself
For the one she loves.
He might not love her back,
But she does it nonetheless.

How similar to our Lord,
Dying on a tree,
Not a barricade.
Sacrificing himself for those he loves,
Though we might not love him back.

The story of Jean Valjean,
A tale of redemption, 
And becoming someone new.
He was given the chance,
To hurt those who hurt him.
But he let him go free 
Showing mercy.

How similar to our God.
That we are dirty and unclean,
With deceitful hearts and sinful natures,
But he showed his mercy freely,
Allowing us to live in his freedom.

How To: Write (the Right Way)
Lauren McNeese
I have always yearned to become a writer.
There are a couple of students who I look up to
Who I admire 
Because they are brilliant writers, authors, poets.
I want to learn how to use a Pilot 0.7 as an instrument from which my inner thoughts
and insights can be recorded on paper.
They say it’s therapeutic. They say it can help you sleep better, to get things out of your head. 
So I emailed an alumni of my high school. 
And I asked her, 
I asked her, 
How could I become a better writer?
How could I become a writer who writes more like her?
And this is what they said:
There is no 
WayTo write.
To become a better writer, 
Is rather easy. 
But also, it is hard; a paradox of sorts. 
To become a better writer, 
One must learn how to 
Write about the happy things in life. 
The simple joys, the dewy mornings, filled with crimson sunrises and black coffee and uncontainable laughter. Book-lined walls, with fresh flowers and handwritten letters and deep conversations past midnight. 
To write about the sad things in life.
She quoted Richard Price, who said: “You do not write about the horrors of war. No. You write about a kid’s burnt socks lying in the road.”
Write about the scary things, the unknown, the future, the death of a loved one.
To write about things that you feel passionately about, that make you tick, that get you out of bed in the morning. 
Write about the monotony of the everyday. The hummmmmmmm of the coffee brewing in the wee hours of the morning, the buzzzzzzz of the radio on your way to school, the LOUD voices in your head but even LOUDER voices in the hallway.
My dear writer, 
Keep writing. 
And it was at that moment that I resolved to do just that. 
So now, when people ask me, what makes a good writer? Why do I write in such a devout manner? 
I simply shrug
And forward them
That email.