amanda mabel book library
Photo courtesy of Amanda Mabel

Her blood is saturated with sunbeams and
her bones brittle thin
and from her skin arises
the musky scent of paper
and smoky vanilla fire.
There’s a bottle of ink spilled over
her fingers and twenty-
six letters carved into her skull.
They rearrange,
remix themselves
into a different world, a different time, a different person
The soft flipping
of threadbare pages
in her ears,
A beautiful sound,
and the sunlight beaming through
her irises fills
her broken body with warmth.
Her head is whirling,
in ebony words
that shoot into her veins
and heal the carcass that
houses her wandering soul.
The letters,
they cure her lust for comfort and
a home
and for a smile to
stretch across
her lips once more.
The ink seeps into her pores and
teleports her away from
the madness
and the tears
and the lonely,
takes her away to where
fairytales come alive and laughter
isn’t an anomaly,
where castles rise out of golden lakes
happily ever after
is just the beginning.
The books and stories that saved her
from herself
when she couldn’t stay awake
have now become her
escape from
the brutal truth
of reality.




Hana Tzou is a dancer, a poet, a coffee addict, a city girl, a future English major, the one you go to with homework questions, someone who puts pink raincoats on her beagle, the grammar police, a candle connoisseur, the Queen of Sestinas, and a chopstick master. She doesn’t like being called “Hannah” and loves to procrastinate AP homework by writing. You can find her work in Stone Soup, Teen Ink, Germ Magazine, and elsewhere.


Amanda Mabel is a fashion and portrait photographer living in Sydney, Australia. Originally from Singapore, she moved to Perth in 2011, then Sydney in 2012. She is currently studying a Bachelor of Arts (Advanced) (Honours) at the University of Sydney. In her free time, she loves taking photographs, travelling to beautiful places, and drinking tea. She also happens to blog for Vogue Australia Spy Style. She maintains a website at and can be found on:  Instagram  Facebook  LinkedIn  Pinterest  Tumblr  Bloglovin Flickr.

One Reply to “Memoirs of a Bibliophile by Hana Tzou”

Leave a Reply