After by Alyssa Carlier

I said no

"Aftermath" courtesy of Rachel Kertz
“Aftermath” courtesy of Rachel Kertz

but I am more
than my blood
than my breach
than my bruises

I am more
than my thighs
than my tragedies
than my tears

I am more
than my past
than my pain
than my pieces

I said no to you
but I won’t say no
to myself



Alyssa CarlierAlyssa Carlier can occasionally be found in a junior high school in Hong Kong but more often swimming in a sea of ink. In a world full of labels, she hovers between “somewhat acceptable” and “mentally deranged.” Writing is her way to escape the social birdcage into the fantastical realm of the mind. In between bouts of writing, she dabbles with bacteria in a lab and blogs at


Rachel Kertz was born in a small town in Missouri in 1988. While earning her degree at Southeast Missouri State University, she became interested in photography and began using her commutes as excuses to go on long drives through the rural countrysides, hoping to find locations and abandoned houses to photograph. She hopes to convey relatable stories in her images that speak to her audience on themes such as loneliness, love, exploration, and the feeling of being alone in unconventionally beautiful places. You can find more of her work here:

Germ Magazine guest author
… is a contributing guest author for Germ, which means the following criteria (and then some) have been met: possessor of a fresh, original voice; creator of fresh, original content; genius storyteller; superlative speller; fantastic dancer; expert joke teller; handy with a toolbox; brilliant at parties; loves us as much as we love them.


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