Short Stories & Essays

Amateur Farewell

Numbed words dribbled to a stop upon my chin,
We stared at our dirtied hands and gulped back hungry words,

And sometimes,
I'd let you in at night
Just to feel your fiery breath invade my essence,
I let you tear me down those nights,
As I prayed to touch supernovas and emerge in cores of red giants,
But I just held onto your spine and breathed in your lust,
Your pleasure is my pleasure,
                               my disaster,

We spelled our own misery on fogged over windows,
As another oiled up rainbow came crashing through the pa(i)nes,
Stifled ignorance oozed between our vowels...

Splatter me against your warmth before I change my mind,
Shadowed pleas begged to be spoken,
        I turned away,
(180 degrees of utter bravery)
Icy pupils fixed on the back of my neck,
But I went on
               and on,
Pushing past the idleness in a tear smeared rush,
Chaotic passion was flicked aside-
Mangled images of a vacant attachment

8th grader
Topeka, Kansas
The Crush

Is this reoccurring sensation
As I timidly look to my left
To my right
I see his face staring intently at me
And I fight
To look the other way
I’m with someone else
Someone caring and cute
Not at all like this one
The one with brown eyes
Always brooding
                Sending me into another world
Leaving me entranced by his smile
I cannot believe I feel this way
We hate each other
Or, at least, we should
But I cannot hate him
I’ve liked him too much
Too long
So here I sit
Trying to be strong
He’s got this look
He uses it sometimes
Or he used to use it with me
It’s a half smile
While he’s laughing
And whenever I see it
I flip out
Wanting to shout
Tell him this hidden secret
Of this hidden crush
It’s wrong to like him
God, I know that
But it’s so hard
To just STOP
When all I can think about is him
During the day
When I pass his way in the hall
Sometimes he’ll smile at me
And I can see that wild look in his eyes
Sometimes he’ll talk with me
And I can hear that soft voice that once told me a secret
But usually we just ignore one another
Like before
When everything was fine
When he was just some stupid guy
With stupid remarks
And stupid looks
Even now people think I am crazy
For continuously defending him
But somehow
Deep inside this tattered heart of mine
I think he still likes me
Some hope from so many months ago
Has kept its flame lit
Kept it guarded and burning
For that one day
That one, awe inspiring moment
When his ears will know
That this crush
                           Still exists
And maybe that day
              He’ll come to say
                            Something sweet within my ear
              As well

10th grader
Seattle, Washington
About the author of "The Crush"...Well, I have a crush! *smiles* Aren't they complicated things? This poem was inspired by Andrew and meant for him, though he'll never see it.
About No One

the viscera of hedonism
we lived
an iridescent life.
Sincerity was crystalline
and we held it in our broken hands.
We watched the basements
go to ashes
outside of the stained morning
on a crippled sidewalk.
Pugnacious and polluted
the gods were lost and
nothing could quite requite us.

Losers, maybe,
but we were the pretty ones.
And we got by

11th grader
Bowling Green, Ohio
About the author of "About No One": Pay no attention to the short chick behind the curtain.

Then suddenly, you hear music
Except you don’t know if it is really there or just in your head
The room, or maybe your mind, is spinning.
And all the people you love, or maybe love and lost, are there.
Shaking there heads and mumbling, "Why; why didn’t she understand it?"
And you are still wondering what it is.
And the world is still spinning, but now spinning away
Fantasy has won the battle with reality in the war of your mind
And is infiltrating.
The world is
Happiness is finally a possibility.

10th grader
Middletown, New Jersey
He Left That Day...

You tell me my dad was a really great guy,
 but I don't believe you,even though I do try.
I can't belive he left that day
because the word good-bye he forgot to say.
I always wounder why he left before I was born
or why over him you never did mourn.
Sometimes I wish I did know him
or at least his part of my kin.
But I guess in someways I am glad
That you didn't tell him,he was going to be a dad
because maybe he wouldn't have let it be
and someone else would had to of adopted me.
So I want to tell you how much I love you
And I know you feel the same way too.

8th grader
Eclectic, Alabama
About The Author:
I'm a 13 year old girl, I am an only child with one parent.I love to write my feelings down on paper. I also love animals, sports, traveling, friends, and reading. The main thing in my life is family though.
In Motion 

The symphony silence
          is armored
               by       desire        like a needle
sickened by     sour                   notes
                  and ended

11th grader
Bowling Green, Ohio
About the author of "In Motion": See that poem up there? I wrote it....

Masked heat, hide the color beneath your skin
Deep wound, festering with each blow
Blood flows, roars in the ears pierced silver
Long anger, growing and straining against the barriers set

Feel the tears
Let the anger burn them dry
Feel the pain
Add it to your vast collection
Feel the heat
Boiling just under control
Feel the volcano
See it in my eyes

Are you afraid yet?
Will you respect me when I strike?
Dark as stone, quick as light
When you feel the pain, think of me
Of the years spent toiling under the chains
Binding me, restricting me from flight
From you, from them
I'll fight to cool the sores on my soul
In a frozen lake far, far from all I know
Away from familiar eyes, away from names

Drown me, you can't
Surround me, you can't
Bind me, you can't
Blind me, you can't
Kill me, you can't

Years from now, gray in your hair
The mocking laughter will follow you
I live without you
Free to be me

Ears don't hear your voice
Eyes haven't seen your face
Fingers never touched you
Heart does not feel for you

I'm glad to see your back
Years would be too soon
If I meet you again
I hope not
Good riddance.

12th grader
St. George, Utah
About the author of 'Volcano'. I've written poems, but never about anger, like this one. Usually my anger leaves very swiftly, but this lives deep within, too deep to be bled from my mind. A part of me.

The waves never end, they just keep going
You meet someone spectacular, your fate not knowing
This ecstatic feeling, tingling, running through your hands
Knowing God never could put, on this earth a better man
Sooner or later, you know it must end
Life was never, to be this grand
Saying goodbye, but you never know
You might meet him again, bringing his face to a glow
Coming back home, seeing friends family and all
Only thinking about his eyes, that now seem so far
Not to hear from him, for a very long time
Not seeing or hearing, his voice so kind
The waves never end, they just keep going
You meet someone spectacular, your fate not knowing
Sooner or later with fate, the man will come again
For in your heart you know, he is your life long friend

10th grader
St. Joseph, Michigan
One Last Goodbye

I turn around
And it's just for a moment
I see your face, I look into your eyes
And I know it's finally over
I think of who I am now
And who I was then
All the good memories
Just barely overshadowed by the bad
You used to be my best friend
And there were times
When everything betweeen us was real
Silent overwhelming moments of truth
That betrayed what we really feel
I remember when you took my hand
To show me into the light
And all that you gave me was darkness
I wish I could find more reassurance
In knowing that you tried
But all that is in yesterday
It's over, done with, and gone
The time has come, it's now, I have to move on
I know he can't replace you
But I'd like to think he might
There's no use in arguing over what we were
It's about time we gave up this fight
Neither of us will ever be able to give enough
To make this love that strong
We watch each other now with eyes that regret
As we each go our own way
We told ourselves this wasn't through yet
But, liars that we are, we knew it was all along

10th grader
King George, Virginia
About the author of One Last Goodbye:
I'm 15 years old and in 10th grade. I've been writing poetry since I was 12.

When I saw her gentle face,
Her features soft and free,
I realized how much I loved her
No matter what I did.
Her hands wove strings of beads
And for me they would weave beautiful dreams,
That danced, twirled, and fluttered around in my head
Like the strange creatures of the sea
And these dreams would stay in my head ‘till dawn broke,
In a cloudless sky
She would awaken me
>From my soft bed
To show me the glazed sun,
Climbing out of the ocean.
But now the memories are just so very dim
Like the haze over the sea,
And I can't believe the thought of forgetting her,
Letting her float away in the current of the sea,
Her bronze hair no longer shining in the sun beams,
Her hands no longer making dreams for me,
No longer stringing tiny shell like beads.
But no!
I will grab her
And keep her in my heart,
Until forever ends.

7th grader
About the author of Memories
I am 13 and luv to read and write poetry in my own free time.
This is Reality

Here I am, so alone.
No more do I care. Yes, I do.
I care too much.
It hurts so much to care.
My whole mind, a writhing sea of nothing.
Confusion swarms my thoughts;
a never-ending fest of dancing locusts.
Here they hop here and here
they flip there and never stop.
How I tire of constant motion;
variations from second to hour,
from day to month.
My scrambled thoughts scare me.
To keep them in my mind,
to keep them out,
makes my body, my emotions, tremble.
Then the tears begin.
They never want to stop;
a torrent so discontent to cease.
They flood my eyes, my cheeks, my lips.
They hit on my breast, on my heart;
the notes of my soul swirl from within.
They sing the song of my wrinkled brow,
my soaked face, my tightened gut.
They play out every note staccato
and stick me each like a dagger so sharp,
slicing my every emotion into bits.
Never can they be put back together.
No, they are ripped past recognition,
past hope, fear, and love.
Never will I be able to piece back the pieces.
Nor will I try.
For, my own hands are to blame.
I am the one who slowly ripped the whole
into tiny halves, then to quarters that
ended up as shreds before my eyes.
Those very eyes have seen the end
of innocence, the beginning of
realization and, in itself, reality.

10tj grader
Mont Belvieu, Texas
In Your Eyes 

I see fear in your eyes--
fear of me?
Why do you fear me?
Am I not pretty enough for you?
I see fear in your eyes--
fear of me?
Why do you fear me?
Am I not rich enough for you?
I see fear in your eyes--
fear of me?
Why do you fear me?
Am I not cool enough for you?
I see fear in your eyes--
fear of me?
Why do you fear me?
Am I too low socially for you?
I fear in your eyes--
fear of me--
I am looking in a mirror.

7th grader
Wilton, Connecticut
About the author of In Your Eyes is a seventh grader. Poetry is her life and nothing more.  She would like to dediacte this poem to Brett.
Potion of Emotions

Emotions swirling all around me,
Never ending and constantly confusing,
Just when I think I comprehend it all,
Another one shows up and blows it all to hell.
I'm stumbling through a fog of hormones
So thick it clogs my memory,
It forces me to forget the pain
That was so fresh in my mind.
There's another downpour now,
Heavier on the confusion and
Lighter on the drama
If only I can get through the wall,
Maybe this time I will win,
Maybe this time I will win...

10th grader
Bowling Green, Ohio
About the author of "Potion of Emotions". I've already submitted one piece here but it just wasn't good enough. Well, I certainly hope this one is. I put a lot of work into this and it has always been my dream to become a published poet. I was been writing for over a year now and it is the best thing in my life. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I have been through some heavy stuff in the past year and poetry was my one outlet. If this is accepted, please look for me again in the future.
Just Another Teenage Angst Poem

"Two shots of anger with a twist of hate please"
I take a deep gulp and feel pleasure at the burning sensation blackening mythroat, heart, lungs, liver
Eating away at my soul
They grasp me and I feel the beginning of what feels like a rope burn
But is the layers of me peeling off
And I ask for another
Coz I just love this criticism
That kills my heart and brain
Haunting me until I'm at the brink
of insanity and just about to leap over
When a hot steaming cup of love pulls me back just a bit
But that doesn't last too long
And I start feeling the effects of my drink once more
And start teetering forwards
I lay my head down silently and go willingly
Dropping at long last without a fight

9th grader
About The Author:
As the title implies, it's just another teeange angst poem. Hope you enjoy it ~God Bless~
I am

I am the wolf you slaughtered
I am the cat you skinned
I am all that suffers
or what you call,
eternal sin

I am the now gone birds
I am the distant past
I am what you butcher
I am what you see
I am your so called
distant reality

I am the once great tree
I am the belittled mouse
I am the land you walk on
I am the sky you soar
And so you used me
and destroyed my roar

I am the one that kills you
I am the ironic mind
I am all that dictates
I am the only strife
and so, I’ll always remind you
I gave YOU life

10th grader
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

The vaguest reason for belonging is never enough for reality.
We understand why we are here but we can never discuss it nor can we defend it.
This is the first in a while since the time when I felt high enough to sponsor a hero.
The dream has fallen from the sky and engraved itself into the hillside,
Without your freedom we are nothing but vivid anger.
Encased within this mind of empty fear, beyond reasons of hope and satisfaction. 
That this time the only time will remain within ourselves and if I offer you this hope it will not allow you to drive me away.

Since this is the beginning of time in the world of silenced dreams,
We must remain alone to believe that what you are thinking is true.
Broken lights across the landscape call out,
They fear that this is the entire reason for dreams of endearment.
Tell them that they are wrong.
Allow the idea to create some sort of semblance of peace.
These heavily armoured cars have killed my spirit, if only there were something in reality because the sequence of time had stopped.

If reality has not changed then I have changed reality.
Have you altered my mind or should I find some other reason,
Perhaps this is the reason why creationism is false and that all we stand or is real.
Dreams that are guided from the lights of eternity,
Become nothing special in our lives of unrealized impurity.
My skin feels unlike my own as the cool winter breeze sweeps through my mind.
Sincerely wishing that this would end, that the siege would become victim to its own creation and fall beneath
 the weight of my love.

Penance has become indistinct, blurred by our own nature.
Frightened children line the streets with impatient fear awaiting his arrival.
Dreams of all that has ever become will eventually seek the tortured children,
For these children are the way of the future, beyond them there is no life.
Yet reason will convey the idea of a social order that will remain,
A social order that will demand justice and impose judgement.
Since the end of time we have discussed the idea of returning for one last bid, that if we believe enough our truth will come true.

Since reality has stolen our nature of desire we may only dream of fulfillment.
Tossed beneath the iridescent light of thought, dreaming of ideas that will kill nature and create hope.
Everything he believes in is false, there is no god, there is no heaven, there is no hell,
There is one reason and one reason alone, that the disappearance of his own dreams give new hope.
He lays in the field with the children awaiting something he is unaware of,
That perhaps he were only there for one and one alone, without this pitiful lingering he becomes undone.
Go with him, lay along his side that he may become what has been allowed, he is the future and if you believe
        close your eyes.      And wait.      Just wait.

/ so / so you think you can tell / heaven from hell / blue skies from pain
/ can you tell a green field / from a
cold steel rail / smile from a veil / do you think you can tell / did they
get you to trade your heroes for ghosts /
hot ashes for trees / hot air for the cool breeze / cold comfort for change
/ and did you exchange / a walk on
part in the war for a lead role in a cage / how I wish / how I wish you
were here / we're just two lost souls
swimming in a fish bowl year after year / running over the same old ground
/ what have we found / the same
old fears / wish you were here /
from "Wish You Were Here", Pink Floyd

11th grader
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
An Artist's Passion

Drunk with Passion
I perform my love
Use him as my canvas
His beauty is the paint
raw pain is the rhythm
of the wild song we sing.
Our souls nude to each other,
a reminder of our binding as individuals
He is chiseled
 like my sculptures
and will stand proud through the wind
a monument of our love.

11th grader
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
About the author of An Artist's Passion:
I'm 16 and trapped in the southeast. This is my first attempt at publishing any of my writing and will appreciate any constructive crticism.  This poem is one of my favorites as it came to me from nowhere while I was looking at the magnetic poetry I keep on my 'fridge. Hope you enjoyed! : )

The clearing wave of the times
Brings me through the days alive
So I used to say
When I wash away my pain
There's a secret I leave inside
It falls under me

Push it out of the inside
It marks the day I die
When reality turns to ashes
When it all crashes

I am sitting unspoken
Eyeing a wound that is open
Drowning in my pain
When death comes inside of me
I won't have to feel the pain
Of another day

12th grader
Frederick, Maryland
About The Author:
My look on life is described in this poem. There is barely ever a day that goes by and I don't feel horrible.
Someone Was Ashamed

I suddenly awoke, but realized it was a dream,
My life of eternity, I was sure of it it seemed.

My best friend, however, was quite a bit unsure,
I was suddenly aware of the hardships she'd endure.

For it suprisingly hit me, she was going to hell,
All because I was too selfish and embarrassed to tell.

To tell her of our Father's mighty love,
To tell her of her promised home above.

To tell her that the battle's won,
Because of Jesus Christ, God's Son.

He willingly endured the pain and strife
So that we may have eternal life.

No matter who we are or what we'll be,
He wil always love both you and me.

Now, my friend was begging on her knees,
"Before it's too late, tell me please!, Tell me of His love for me!"

Satan stood to her left, and Jesus to her right,
On her face was the look of horror, of fright.

And then on the Judge's desk I spied,
Laid out and open was the Lamb's Book of Life!

God was intently reviewing every name,
He looked up only to shake His head in shame.

Another life lost because someone was ashamed,
Ashamed to share that wonderful name.

The Name that saves, the Name that heals,
The Name we thank before every meal.

There are many in our world who are lonely and lost,
With those, we must share the story of the Cross.

So dear Christians, witness to your friends,
For one day soon he's coming again.

9th grader
Blackshear, Georgia
About the author of Someone Was Ashamed

Erin is an outgoing teen.She likes to sing, dance, read, write, and everything else! The most precious thing to her is her Christianity, which is plainly seen throughout the elements of this poem.She began writing it one day for a friend who did not know Jesus Christ as Savior. She never really intended for the girl to read it; however, she did. The girl's life was, in turn, completely changed.



a strange, foreign feeling fills my heart
and soul.
i look into your eyes and feel
so alone
nothing about me understood
not my feelings
needs or
i feel as if i am trapped in a glass bottle
alone as ever.
i peer out a gaze at your distorted image
i feel a burning sensation
sizzles through me.
Like you care.
i push and shove against the sides
hoping to break the bottle
and making it shatter in your smirking face
the shards cut you
expressing my anger
setting me free from your so-called love
letting everything go.

7th grader
About the author of Trapped-
I am a 13 year old who lives in the USA.  I don't know what inspired me to write this it just came out. I love to write and hope to publish many of my pieces.

Everyday I look out the window and hope to see you
But i see not what i hope
I answer the phone hoping it's you
but it isn't
so i walk past your house
i wish for you to be there
but I do not get what I wish
every morning i wake up
and wish to see you
and again i do not get what i wish for
memories of you dance in my head
 taking over my mind
i miss you and i need what i wish for to live

9th grader
About The Author:

i'm 15 years old

Last breath

When the heavens in the sky break all hell loose
 the darkness seems to arrive
A colour, an image, blind people see
It's a covering for us to all hide
Though the air is soothing, evil fills the sky
The stars are suffering, the love is fading
People laugh and people cry
This is their joy
A blinding light spreads, echoing through the silence
People stare terrified
For my love has been sucked out, my heart is no longer in vein
My soul is empty as I am done
An ending

11th grader
Sydney, NSW, Australia
About the author
I am a 16yr old teenager frpm australia where i am inspired to write through my feelings and emotions.
Hold my Hand

We walk together
Enjoying the beautiful weather.
You make amiable conversation.
I smile.
Without notice
Without preparation
You turn to me.
I sense your gaze
And turn to you.
How blue your eyes are.
Why hadn't I noticed them before?
And the freckles,
That cover your nose so cleverly,
When did they appear?
How entrancing your smile is.
How is it that I've never seen you in this light before?
You smile daftly
And I laugh.
You laugh too.
How perfect!
A moment passes without talking
And I begin to feel slightly uncomfortable.
What is this feeling that is taking over my soul?
You are rubbing your hands together
You don't quite seem like yourself.
I hiccup.
Why did I have to hiccup?
Luckily, my action causes you to look at me.
"Are you alright?" you ask.
I nod nervously.
And then it happens.
Your right hand glides near my left
And our fingers touch.
I think nothing of it and continue walking.
But then it happens again.
Except that, this time, you succeed in rubbing against my hand.
But, you return your roaming hand to its rightful spot at your side.
And we continue walking.
Another long moment passes
Before you try again.
Once and for all
My left hand becomes cooperative
And slips itself comfortably into your right hand.
Our fingers link together
The warmth of your hand penetrates the coldness of mine.
I'm loving this!
Finally, I turn to you.
And you turn to me.
You smile.
I smile back.
If all you wanted
Was to hold my hand,
You could have just asked!

12th grader
Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
About the author of Hold my Hand: I had too much time on my hands and was thinking about  a certain person in my life, or maybe the one that used to be in my life.  I don't really know.  Anyhow, this poem emerged from that thinking.
Sometimes When

sometimes when i
go walking in the evening
i like to look up
at all the windows
full of warm yellow light
spilling like lemonade out into the street
they look so inviting but
sometimes when i
see them in the evening
i wonder what goes on inside
beneath the hazy illumination
if the lives lived within
are dim by comparison
or are they the source of the brilliance but
sometimes when i
find in the evening
avenues covered with endless houses
each the center of its own universe
i hope i don’t wane and vanish
like a transient image
you see only when you close your eyes

11th grader
Oceanside, NY
About The Author:

Alanna is a sixteen year old junior from Long Island, New York. In addition to writing short stories and poems, she enjoys reading, photography, playing bass guitar, and film. She hopes to eventually become a successful author.

Jenny Travers

An awful lot of sorrow
Is not much quieting down,
Since gentle Jenny Travers'
Body was found,
She was such a quiet child
So loving and so fair,
That all went away
When she took that simple dare,
Off the bridge into the water
She flew down fast and quick,
They say she tried to swim
But the water was too swift,
An awful lot of sorrow
Is not much quieting down,
As gentle Jenny Travers
Is lowered in the ground

10th grader
Brookfield, Wisconsin
About the author

Amy is 15 years old and lives in Brookfield Wisconsin. She has been writing for the past 3 years.  Poetry is her favorite area of interest but she also enjoys Creative writing. Amy is also a avid reader and hopes to one day become a author of some sort.

Autumn Song

Wind chimes play an autumn song.

The lyrics inspired by a gentle breeze.

The trees cry their coloured tears.

A ritual mourning of the season past.

Animals prepare their winter home to the rhythmic sounds.

As the coloured tears carpet the ground, preparing to be reborn.

For their salvation lies in the synchronised course of nature.

And all the while, the wind chimes play an autumn song.

8th grader
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
I Shall Retire...

Green green gobs of gooey formation.
Heck! I live my life twenty-first century!
Where shall I see peace? When?
Where is my home? Home? I've lost it. You see it?
It's gone with the wand in vain!

They hurry, scurry and hustle about.
Thank no one but kiss yourself.
Eat your soul and seep thy blood.
Drink your toast in coal named fear.
Celebrate they say, when Satan's gamed.

Supple love greet fickle doom:
Of love, compassion, wild man chase.
Fake and fickle wild man chase.
You seek your future, sink thy rainbow.
Sink tomorrow by the brink?

Advancement came, but he bit my lips.
I ached, you danced. I cry, you glee.
Gleam and glamour, take my seat.
Sin and sorry, earn your prey.
A goo is formed beneath thy soles!

War and hatred, hail me meek and mild.
Years ago I saw my meadow.
Heart at the edge and the tears foresee.
Today I stand a dungeon drain.
Spit me names and stab me hard.

Unhurt ... I shall retire ...

11th grader
About The Author:

Currently 16 years old. Main passion of course evolves around writing and reading. Enjoy dreaming, net surfing, music and badminton also. [Great way of getting muses! No kiddin']

Questions of Confusion

Who do you think you are?
To come into my mind,
park yourself there,
and stay the center of attention.
Why are you doing this to me?
Ruining my concentration,
confusing my mind,
and taking away my soul.
Do you agree with my feelings
or is this just a horrible dream,
where you make me think you do?
Why do you confuse me so,
because I would never do the same to you.
Why does it seem that I can always find you,
in the midst of the crowd.
Maybe it is the way your eyes smile
and always seem to be pointed at me,
but more like the person next to me.
But my mind sees those eyes
and wants them for its own.
So to it, those eyes
Are staring right back at mine
Do you agree with my feelings
or is this just a horrible dream,
where you make me think you do?
Why do you confuse me so,
because I would never do the same to you.
Take your smiling eyes away from here,
Because seeing them reminds me
of when I thought they could be mine.
And as the music plays on, I will still wonder,
Why couldn’t that song last longer?
Why couldn’t I hold on tighter?
Why couldn’t I have been the one you wanted?
Why couldn’t those moments last forever?

10th grader
Middletown, NJ

When I see the world
this way
I die.
and dark
and rain
nice somehow.
I melt into the grass
like the green light
dancing as a running woman
on the velvet navy water.
I sink.
Watching the pale blackness
of the sky
I suffocate.
Hearing human words
I try to remember the motions
of the cross
but I forget.
When I see
Actually see
the world
I am never born.

11th grader
Little Rock, Arkansas
Sometimes I wish

Sometimes I wish I had somewhere to hide
I wish I could find a corner
I could hide in my corner
Everyone would forget about me

I would be safe in my corner
I could be safe from all the pressure,
From all the rejection,
From all the pain

I wish the world around me would stop
Stop spinning
I could shrink down and cry

I wish I had someone to talk to
I wish someone understood
I wish someone really cared
I wish someone really knew

Sometimes I wish

9th grader
The Writer

Her hands are warped and ugly, callused bruised and old
Her fingers are not straight but crooked, and they shake as though she's
But still she carries them with pride as she remembers long ago
The days the words flew through her mind out onto pages with her own
creative flow
Her hands, ink-stained and boney, so unlike they were the years before
When she had been a famous writer, like no other was before
But the leaves change with the seasons and are never quite the same
And her hands well forever tremble as she signs her once famous name

8th grader
Pittsburgh, PA
The Mask

I put on a mask today,
so that everyone would see a perfect me.
For me to be what they and I want me to really be like.
But it was still a mask.

It made me cool, it helped me fit in.
It helped make friends, and so
the real me hid behind for so long,
behind that mask.

But still close friends saw me with the mask,
even when I wanted to rip it off,
show them the real me.
I couldn't get it off.
But never the less it was only just a mask.

Some, few, saw me without the mask
They tried, did love me for me........
for a while but without the mask, without perfection,
it was just me, the same...always, and they wanted...
a mask.

I tried to take off the mask, tear it off
but it wouldn't come off
i had had it on for too long.
One way I knew it would leave,
and I did it.
I left the mask and everything else too, forever.
Because it wasn't only, just a mask.

About The Author:

Um... the poem is about trying to find out our true identities while going through adolescence and it is a story of a girl whom found it too hard to show the real her, so she left her identity and everything the only way she knew how, suicide.

The Red Rose Bud 

The red rose bud opens to life.
Closes to death.
Red, The color of blood.
There in life, in death.
When you are born, when you die.
The red rose bud opens to life.
The plunging of a knife, blood red.
Red rose bud opens to life.
There in death you may lay,
But the red rose bud only opens to life.

11th grader
Hudson, New York

Ready, brake,
reduce, gap it,
6, blue 88, blue 88, set, hut,
block, tackle him,
clapping, huddle, lets go D!

10th grader
St. Joseph, Michigan
About the author of Football. I am on the football team and Swim Team at my high school. I am in 10 grade at St Joseph High School

Written in a pen.
Sealed with a kiss.
If you love me,
then listen to this.
I do believe that God above
created you for me to love.
If i go to heaven and your not there
I'll write your name on a golden stair.
If your not there by Judgment Day,
I'll know you went the other way.
I'll give the angels back their wings,
Golden harp and other things.
Just to prove my love for you,
I'll go to hell to be with you.
I guess what I'm trying to say is,
No matter what you do or say,
I will always love you anyways.

10th grader
Willows, California
About The Author:
I am a 15 year old sophomore in high school. I wrote this for my boyfriend when we first started going out. I would do anything for anyone that i am close with. I like to write, roller blade, run, talk on the phone, and go to the movies.

One by one they march
All the same
They fit the mold
That America has made

Dependant on one another
They are all followers
Incapable of leadership

Marching to the same tune
Allowed no thoughts of their own
Only believing what they hear
In their minds,
Independence doesn't exist

They've never seen diversity
Never heard of any thing different from them
They know of nothing out of routine
They don't even know that there's another,
Better world
Out of their sad existence

Merry Dawn
10th grader
High Point, North Carolina
About the author of "Ants". I'm only in high school and I LOVE writing, it's the only sure way to express myself, and let others know about my talent at the same time.

Why do we cry?
Streaks of salty water
falling carelessly down our cheeks
Why do I cry?
Is it my life, the sting
or the questions that remain unanswered?
Is it the rejection and the pain
the words that stab me like a knife
or is it because I am lost?
Tell me why you cry
why tears drip on your jeans
blending in with the dark fabric
Are we going to find ourselves?
Finally realize who we are
Are we going to leave?
Never to return
Is anybody going to listen?
To our cries for help
or the words we do not say.

7th grader
Madison, Wisconsin
Prophet Singer 

Listen to me;
almost every day being a dream,
this should not matter.

 There are gutter things with hearts
 And the sewers of fantasy
 Bring out the filth that is their dream

 Rotted cheers can roll along
 Humanizing the dour, the slow
 Voicing the cosmos only for the lepers

 Sometime, proud folk will be blown down
 Prophets for the decaying come
 And say "I am the Gutter Dream, the Golden Dream."

Almost every day being a dream,
this should not matter.

11th grader
Bowling Green, Ohio
About the author of Prophet Singer: I got a lot of inspiration for this from reading old poetry from the 1700s and 1800s. Some of it is completely terrible, other times it's the greatest stuff you'll ever read.

I'll always be
           the shy one,
           the one who had big glasses
           the one that everyone told their problems to
           but never shared her own
          the one whom is
nameless and faceless
the buddy
Yet I've lived
          lost much
           regretted more
           won battles
          fallen hard
          cried rivers
          and kept my face behind a mask
Can you see me as i see you?
Do you cry for me as i do for you?
Doubtfully wishing and
Second chances
That i don't want...

About The Author:
I am the one that you pass by in the hallways and don't give a sideways glance to, yet i have a soul of unimaginable thoughts and ideas running rampant (sometimes it scares me actually)
The Hunter

Mike Jonas loaded his gun onto the back of the truck, his breath creating tiny clouds of moisture in the icy morning air. The grass crunched as he walked, thousands of particles of frost being crushed underneath his boots.

There was movement by the front door. Mike’s daughter Kelly stood there, staring at him.

She sighed, and muttered, “I hate hunting season.”

“If we didn’t have it,” Mike retorted, “this town would be overflowing with deer.”

“Sounds beautiful to me,” Kelly answered.

Mike considered, then climbed into the truck and pulled out of the driveway.

He gave Kelly a little wave, which she didn’t return. He knew that she despised Maine, calling it “The South of the North”. That probably meant the state had more rednecks than Alabama, but was a hell of a lot colder.

Never mind that. Kelly would go off to college next year, leaving Mike to his frozen paradise without any negativity. His ex-wife Sharon was convinced that Mike’s soul was going numb, the same way his hands did when he forgot to wear gloves.

“Everything you do up there, you do so you won’t have to think,” she told him during their last phone conversation. What kind of soul-expanding could she possibly be doing in LA? Mike often wondered. Talk about numb- the people there were so gone on drugs and Hollywood that speaking to them was no different than speaking to someone on general anesthesia.

Mike wasn’t actually sure why he hunted. Perhaps it was for the raw surge of power that a man could experience when holding a gun in his hands. But that didn’t do it for him. The animals were so helpless. They couldn’t fight back. Ending life simply because he could did not leave Mike with any feelings of superiority. Actually, he liked to think what he did was a tribute to his little brother. Chris had loved hunting, called it an “adrenaline rush”. At the end, Chris became the hunted, in Vietnam. He was shot at such a close range that the bullet passed straight through him.

Mike stopped the truck and got out. He had reached the edge of the woods.

Moving as slowly and quietly as possible was the key. Deer had incredibly sensitive hearing, so he had to be silent. That was the problem with starting off so early in the morning. The frost had no time to melt, and the sound of Mike stepping on it probably seemed as loud as a lawnmower to the animals. Mike could wait until the afternoon, but he liked to avoid the other hunters.

As he approached the deeper areas of the forest, Mike barely allowed himself to breathe. He perked up his own ears, listening for signs of life near him.

He heard nothing. Mike thought, with mild amusement, that all the animals were still asleep.

A dim light broke through the treetops, shattering the grayness that had presided. Without warning, a single deer appeared before Mike, seeming to materialize out of the undergrowth. The beginnings of antlers were poking their way through the top of its head. Mike’s heart thudded loudly enough to hear it through his heavy coat. He slowly lifted his gun.

The deer lifted its eyes toward the rifle, as if to acknowledge the life-destroying capacity of the weapon. Despite this, it actually started to walk closer to Mike.

He couldn’t shoot, not with it just staring at him that way. What kind of deer was this? By now, most had become wise enough to fear humans.

Shocked, Mike waved his gun at it. The deer didn’t appear startled, but turned away and began to retreat back through a group of trees.

Now, Mike’s mind commanded coldly. But he could not shoot the deer in the back, either.

He waited until the deer moved out of view, and exhaled slowly. Mike wondered if Chris had killed anyone in Vietnam. He hoped not.

When there was no sign of the deer, Mike turned and walked back to his truck.

Later, back at home in his kitchen, Kelly asked him how many innocent animals he had murdered that day.

“None,” Mike said softly.

Kelly looked at him for a moment. “Good for you, Dad,” she said, and went outside to scrape the ice off her car.

11th grader
Oceanside, NY
About The Author:

Alanna is a sixteen year old junior from Long Island, New York. In addition to writing short stories and poems, she enjoys reading, photography, playing bass guitar, and film. She hopes to eventually become a successful author.

A Summer Moment

"Maybe it was meant to happen."

Ouch! I couldn’t believe she just said that. Imagine, my best friend ever since the second grade, and she was telling me what was supposed to happen in my life. I wasn’t in the mood for this right now.

"Do you want something cold to eat? A popsicle maybe?" I was saying anything just to change the subject. "Look, we have grape, cherry, lemon, or orange. Which flavor do you want?" I asked her as I opened the freezer door.

"Hmm, I think I’ll try the grape this time. I had orange last time." Anna said. "And let me guess," she continued on, "You’re going to have the cherry?"

"Always and forever," I said with a laugh.

I shut the freezer door and we went back to our spots on the deck in my back yard. It was a hot, sunny, summer day, and the trees created a small shield against the blazing sun. I wondered how much longer we were going to spend the day outside because I always felt more comfortable in the air conditioning than outside in scorching weather.

"As I was saying," Anna spoke, interrupting my thoughts. "What can you do about Kevin? I mean, of course you had a great friendship while it lasted, but now can’t you see that it’s over?"

As I was listening to what Anna was telling me, my mind started to drift back to the last day that Kevin and I had spoken. It happened so long ago, but I could still remember every detail of our conversation. We were on the phone like we were every night, but this night was different. Conversation seemed hard for both of us to hold. There were long moments of silence that seemed endless. Finally, I guess he decided that he couldn’t hold it in any longer, he said, "I really want this friendship to work."

"What do you mean?" I answered him. "We’ve been the best of friends ever since we could walk. Why wouldn’t it work?"

"We’re both changing. Things haven’t been the same between us for awhile now. Something’s different."

"Kevin, what are you talking about? I’m still the same as I’ve always been. The same dependable, fun, happy girl that I’ve always been. I made a promise to you that we’d be friends forever, whatever it took, and I intend to keep my promise. Now what about you?" I laughed. What was his problem anyway? He always gets in these moods. He gets all serious on me and talks in metaphors, sometimes I think he just has way too much time on his hands.

"Some promises are hard to keep," he muttered.

"What? Kevin, can you speak up? I didn’t quite hear you. What were you saying?" I rose my voice to show him how easy it was.

"Nothing. Listen, I have to go. But I’ll call you tomorrow, OK?"

"You promise?" I asked him. It was kind of like a game I played with him.

I always made him promise everything he said to me because I knew that he never break a promise or he would die trying to keep it.

"I promise."

"Alright, I’ll talk to you later then. Bye." I put the phone back on the receiver and hoped that tomorrow’s conversation would go smoother. Needless to say, it did. But that’s because he never called the next day. And I haven’t heard from him since.

"Remember when you, Kevin, and I used to sit on my front steps and eat our popsicles?" I said snapping back into reality. "Kevin and I with our cherry and you with your lemon. At the end we would see who had left the biggest puddle on the steps, and it always Kevin and I because we had the same flavor and the puddles from our two popsicles would mix together and become one. Do you remember that?"

"Of course I do" Anna replied. "Those were some of the best days in my life."

"I wish we could go back to those days," I stated.

"Nope." Anna disagreed. "Sure they were fun, but now it’s time to grow up. I want to move on."

"Not me. I want to be a kid forever. No worries, all the time in the world. It was great." My popsicle was melting fast now and I was wishing that I wasn’t eating it so slowly. I love to savor every cold moment in my mouth.

"What are you going to do about Kevin?" I kept wondering why she was bringing that back up. Couldn’t she see that I kept trying to change the subject?

"Nothing. He’s just being Kevin. He’s in one of his moods right now. He’ll snap out of it and become his old self in no time," I replied.

"Maybe you’re right," she said. But she didn’t sound too convinced.

"I mean, why should things change now that we’re older? Nah, we’re just friends, like we have always been. Nothing’s changed, you’ll see." I wanted to prove to her that I knew what I was talking about. But the way she was talking was really starting to scare me. Why was she being so cynical about the whole situation? It was now becoming harder and harder to convince myself of what I was saying. I just wanted so badly to believe that nothing would be different, that things would always be the same as they always were. But then she said what I had been dreading someone was going to say to me ever since Kevin and I have become friends.

"Maybe you’re just drifting apart" As she said this, my popsicle broke in half, and landed on the ground. I watched it sit there as a red puddle started to form around it. Drips of purple fell from Anna’s popsicle and landed in the small puddle that my popsicle had formed. It was just then that I realized how small my puddle really was. For the first time in a long time, a tear rolled down my cheek and then joined the puddle at the end of my feet. And from then on, I knew how things were going to be. Anna, me, and my tears. Just the three of us.

11th grader
Long Valley, NJ
About the author of A Summer Moment

Kathy is a junior attending West Morris Central High School in New Jersey. This is the first short story she's ever written, and she hopes to improve with time. Kathy is still trying to find her passion in life, but she knows that for now she enjoys writing to help express herself. She wrote this story when she was trying to accept the fact that everyone around her was changing, including herself.

The Fall

Frank approached the window; the incredible height of the skyscraper made him dizzy. The sun had just begun to drop behind the city skyline, casting a red glow that only heightened the exhilaration flowing through Frank’s veins. Gripping the outsides of the window, he flung himself into the world. He did not just fall; he seemed to hover, descending slowly toward the ground. Inside, people were having parties, extravagant ones, the ones Frank had dreamed of. The peacefulness of the fall made Frank feel fortunate. All his worries: school, girls, his future… gone. He had never been so clear minded in his life.

He saw a girl in the corner of a brightly-lit apartment. She could not seem to sit still, tapping her foot in a discouraged manner as the kids around her enjoyed the music and dancing of the party. Frank knew that tap; it was the tap of a frustrated teen, seeking something more. Frank came to a stop, hovering right in front of the window of the apartment. The girl slowly stood and made her way to the window, shouldering past the kids, who were too preoccupied to acknowledge her existence. Frank waited. Her white, flowing dress made her stand out in the crowd of mini skirts and tube tops. She seemed out of place at such a party.

Finally, reaching the window, the girl smiled at Frank, who was surprised to see that he would have company during the fall. The girl attracted much attention as she opened the window. A sudden gust of autumn air shot into the luxurious apartment and someone muttered, “Shut that window, it’s cold.”

The girl took one last look around the morally empty party and leapt into Frank’s world. She quickly clutched his hand. Her name was Maria.

Frank and Maria fell for hours, days, maybe even longer. Time took a backseat to the incredible vibe that flowed between them. As their fall progressed, the eerie red glow cast by the falling sun grew darker. A loud boom—thunder—temporarily disturbed Frank and Maria from their dreamy fall, but nothing could put a damper on their long awaited journey, their journey into nothingness.

11th grader
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
What is Love

To define love in terms understandable to everyone would be an impossible task, and to describe love would be to simply draw from one’s own experiences. Love is a perception of an indescribable feeling by an individual, a perception that can be twisted one way or the other, bending to one’s every whim. However, when love strikes, one cannot help but realize its existence, as if recognition of love was an instinct placed in us ever since the birth of mankind. And with this instinct, I know that the strike has not streamed through my whole being as of yet. Of course, there was the innocence of puppy love when I was a mere child of four. I “fell in love” with my neighbor whom I’ve known practically since my birth and at that time the feelings seemed crucial to my very way of life. I followed him around everywhere, watching him stick out his tongue and run away with his male friends, only to join me in a game of “House” minutes later. But, when I was six he moved away and my romantic feelings soon dissolved, with the only reminder of a childhood romance being a small picture of us, sitting on a log.

Entering middle school presented a whole different challenge of getting used to the opposite sex all over again. Fearing to fall behind my friends, I went through several so – called boyfriends, partly to keep up with others and partly to rekindle the experience of having a guy for a friend. Although I felt some sort of attachment to these guys, who still remained strangers even after months of “romance,” I realize now that I’ve never truly loved any of them. I’ve never felt like I could not spend another day without seeing them, never woke up with one of their names on my mind. I never lost any appetite or sleep over their absences, never longed to see them the next day. I think that’s what love is about, not being able to be fully alive without another person, only to experience complete happiness in their presence.

When faced with leaving half of my family behind in Russia, I realized that there is also a different kind of love, the love that exists among family members. This love is unconditional and never – ending and persists through thick and thin, because the people who share it are united by a stronger bond, that of being related by blood. Such love does not require sacrifices, constant reminders or efforts for up keeping, it is simply there. Unfortunately, I only truly experienced this love when faced with separation and to this day I regret not spending enough time with my grandmothers, aunts and uncles. I regret that I did not appreciate them enough and did not take advantage of our special bond while I still could.

10th grader
Cleveland, Ohio
Shared Salt

He looked up into her eyes with redness in his own eyes which she knew were tears. He tried to bury his head into her shoulder so she would not see the truth. In her head she whispered vows of love which she knew he could silently hear. The words would not come as she continued to lie in his arms, sobs taking over her entire body. Every now and then she let out a shrill whimper, that of a child when they would cry. They both took no notice to the fact that each of their shirts were completely wet from the tears. They just held each other, heart to heart. She could feel his every heart beat against her body. She could hear his every thought in her mind. They clung to each other each one wishing time moved much slower. Every now and then they would pull away and look into each others eyes. They were both attempting to grasp hold of everything they had and keep it forever within them. He held her head in his hands and kissed away each of her tears. She kissed his lips tasting the saltiness of her own tears. She had never felt such happiness with anyone before and here it was being taken away from her.

She had no idea how to handle the pain that seemed to be filling up her heart. The tears she cried were not falling because he was going to be gone, they were falling because she knew that it was over. Every ounce of happiness she felt from him was being taken away from her for reasons she could not understand.

When he stood to leave she cried even harder. They stood for a long time in front of her house not talking. Until he told her promises she knew he couldn’t keep. She silently looked up and wished on a star that this was not happening. She looked into his big eyes for the last time, kissed his lips for the last time savoring every moment. As they were locked in embrace one single tear slid down her face and hit their lips as they both tasted the salt. As they both felt the sadness. He began to walk away from her and all that was in her life. She tried not to cry and stood outside staring in his direction until she could see him no more. It was only then that she went inside, and there she stood still not being able to move. When she began to cry she tasted the same salt which they had shared and she knew that she would never forget him.

11th grader
Montreal,Quebec, Canada
About The Author:
hey..I'm 16 and this story means alot to me, it is very true and hope that something flutters in your heart when you read it.  "Every night I ask the stars above, why must I be a teenager in love"
A Slave Girl's Journal 

October 15th, 1834

My feet hurt so much! It will be days before I will be able to stand on them. Maybe I deserved this punishment. Well, of course I do! At least that is what the law says.
“Why did you do it? Why did you run away, Lisa?” my parents kept asking.
Why? Because the cows grazing in the pastures have more freedom than we do.
We eat cows!
It started when I was working in the fields. My hands were
plastered with dirt. Sweat beads were forming on my face. I needed some rest. I walked over to a nearby field of wildflowers and laid down. I had only meant to lie there for about ten minutes, but I fell asleep and didn’t wake up until about an hour later.

I woke up and looked around, at first not remembering where I was.  Then, realizing I was supposed to be working, I looked towards the field.

Grumpy old Albert was handing out some bread to all the other slaves.  Knowing that I would be badly punished for not being there, I decided to run. I ran as fast as my short legs would go, but it wasn’t fast enough. I was caught in fifteen minutes by Al and a few other men. I was pushed to the ground. My head hit the ground and a sharp rock made a big gash in my cheek.

Someone kicked dirt in my face.

“Crazy animal,” Al said. “You N****** just never learn, do you?”

Then he picked me up and tied me to a tree. I knew I was in for it when he took his whip out. He whipped my feet ten times. Then he tied a rope around my wrists and the other end to his horse. I couldn’t walk, so I was dragged down the road. My skin is all scraped up, and my dress torn. 

Well, that is enough for now. I need to get some sleep.


October 7th, 1834

“You better be careful, baby. If them white folks see you writin’ you be whipped real good.” That’s what my mother keeps telling me. Well, she can say all she wants, but I’m not going to stop. Elizabeth, my master’s daughter, secretly taught me how to read and write. She says she thinks I deserve it since I work so hard. Says she feels sorry for me. I don’t need anyone feeling sorry for me, but I am very grateful to her. At least now I have something to do as I lay in bed when everyone is too busy to come and visit me.

Elizabeth should be here soon. She promised me a visit and another lesson this afternoon. I can hardly wait! 


October 8th, 1834

My session with Elizabeth yesterday was very interesting. First we talked awhile. Then we worked on my English. She said I am doing very well.  After that Elizabeth taught me some American songs. It was fun, but I don’t remember how they went or what they were called.  

I can’t wait until next time Elizabeth comes. She said it will probably be in four or five days. I feel like we are true friends. When we are together I feel happy and I am able to tell her everything. She tells me everything too. We understand each other and it is a wonderful feeling to have. Of course, I can’t tell anyone. A black being friends with a white is forbidden. I won’t let that get in the way of our friendship though. This is the happiest I have ever felt, and I won’t give it up. Maybe tomorrow I’ll start making her something, maybe a necklace, to show her what her friendship means to me.


October 11th, 1834

Doctor Smith finally told me I can begin getting out of bed and walking around the room. I was so excited I pushed myself out of bed and onto my feet, and immediately collapsed.

“Oh, yes,” the doctor said. “I must warn you that you will probably have a hard time standing up and will most likely need to use crutches to walk.”

And why, I would like to know, didn’t he tell me that before I tried to stand up?


October 30th, 1834

I haven’t written for quite awhile, but I was just too sad.  Something awful happened. I believe it happened on the 15th. Elizabeth was walking down here to see me. An African that was a new arrival was running away. Elizabeth was in his way and he pushed her to the side. She fell and landed on a hoe. The metal end was sticking up and it cut her throat. She bled to death. I had been hobbling over to meet her and saw it all happen. I screamed and dropped the necklace that I had spent hours upon hours perfecting for her. I was, and still am, devastated. She was my only true friend.

That wasn’t all that happened that day. All us slaves were forced to stand and watch as the African was tied to a pole. We had to watch as the long, freshly tarred whip bit into his flesh over and over again. The African was whipped to death and even a few times after. The whole time, we had to watch, and suffer.

I, unfortunately, will never forget what happened that day. I know that for a fact. My dreams are haunted with the sounds of the whip cracking in the air and against the African’s back, with the African’s piercing scream, and the cries of everyone standing around me. Never will I forget.


November 5th, 1834

I am back to working in the fields. After lying in bed for all that time, the work seems much more strenuous. I had to stop for a rest quite often.  When I got back to my family’s room I collapsed onto my bed. That was five hours ago, and I am still here. I am so exhausted that just writing is difficult. I hurt all over. I think I will stop writing now. It’s too hard.


November 11th, 1834

Good news! When Doctor Smith saw how dilapidated I was after one day of labor he said he would make sure I didn’t have to do anymore field work! Of course, I can’t get away with not doing anything. Now I work in my master’s house. I take care of Cole, my master’s three-year old son, and while he is sleeping, I help in the kitchen. Cole is a very sweet boy. I enjoy taking care of him. Imagine that, a slave enjoying her work.


November 13th, 1834

I don’t know if I will be able to live through anymore horrible experiences! Yesterday my father was sold to a man who lives about one hundred miles from here! Mama still hasn’t stopped crying. And me, well, I don’t cry. I can’t cry. Many times I feel as though I should be crying, but no tears come out. I had tried to be brave in fear that tears would get me whipped, but now when I want to cry, I can’t. My eyes are forever dry, but my heart is always crying. It cries for all of the slaves, for the sick children, and even for the cruel whites. But now it cries mostly for the father I have lost.


November 17th, 1834

Today is my sixteenth birthday. Birthdays are supposed to be happy, right? Well, for some reason I can’t find any happiness today. On my past birthdays my father would sing me an African song. But, today I didn’t hear his deep, strong voice, and I miss it.

Mama made me a sweater for my birthday, Sara, the head cook, made me a large delicious dinner, and Cole gave me flowers, but none of that brought back my father. Oh, what will I do without him?


November 24th, 1834

Cole has become sick with fever. I am no longer responsible for him. That is now Doctor Smith’s job. Now I work in the kitchen alongside Sara. I get much more food because I am allowed to take the leftovers. I always make sure to bring at least half of it to Mama. I don’t live with her anymore because everyone who works in the kitchen all day, everyday, lives closer to the house. I miss living with Mama, but I make sure to visit her when I can.


December 1st, 1834

There has been rumor that our master is in debt. If this is true, then all of the slaves on the plantation will probably be sold. I don’t want to be sold, because then I would have to start all over again. Right now I am about as high as I can get. I work in the house, get a lot of good food, and have a nice room with a comfortable bed. I don’t want to give it up.


December 15th, 1834

My life is over. My soul had died. I am just an empty body walking around.  My biggest nightmare has come true. All us slaves on the plantation were chained up and dragged along some miles without rest. At our final destination there were crowds of white folks, mostly men, standing around a platform. At the back of the platform there was a man standing behind a tall, skinny desk. I am not sure what its name is.  

One by one we were taken up on the platform. The men would say prices until no one wanted to go any higher. Then the man on the back of the platform would say the highest number once, twice, then sold. We were being auctioned; at least that is what someone said it was.

Mama’s turn came right before mine. She was sold to a nice looking middle-aged man. I thought that for sure he would buy me too. I stepped up on the platform and looked down at everyone before me. My knees were shaking uncontrollably. Numbers started to be called out. The man who bought Mama kept on calling out numbers. I was up there longer than anybody else, and the numbers got higher than anybody else’s had gotten. Finally the man who bought Mama called out a number and no one else called out anything higher. The man behind me said the number once, twice- I was so excited that I would be with Mama and have a nice master- then another man called out a much higher number. I looked at Mama’s owner, expecting him to say an even higher number. He had a panicked look on his face. He looked at me, then Mama, then me again. He put his hands over his face and shook his head. Then I heard the familiar voice saying the number once, twice… and sold.
“Mama!” I screamed. Mama’s new master looked up at me sadly. Mama fell to the ground, weeping.

My new master took my wrist and led me to his wagon. As we walked past Mama’s owner’s wagon, Mama said “I love you, Baby. Don’t you go gettin’ yourself in trouble, now. Remember your Daddy and me forever. Don’t forget us or what we been teachin’ you. Baby, don’t forget!”
“I won’t forget, Mama! I will never forget!” I cried.
“I love you, Lisa!”
“And I love you.”
My master pulled me forward. I watched as Mama was driven away with her new master. For the first time in years, my eyes blurred with tears.  “I’m glad I finally got me a pretty little N***** ", my owner said with a smirk. “I think I will enjoy you.” What did he mean?



December 19th, 1834

I cannot stay here any longer. My owner is a very cruel man. He
treats me badly and disgraces me. I must leave. I have packed up a few things and will leave when it is black outside. I am leaving this journal with Anna. I shared a room with her and she is the only person who has been kind to me here. I told her to get it to my mother or father if she is ever able to. I will miss it, but I won’t have any time to write while I’m running.  I should be nervous about running away, but I’m not. I know I could get killed, but I don’t care. After all, my soul is already dead. I might make it, or I might get caught and be killed, but either way, I will be free from this torture.

So long.


December 26th, 1834

Lisa was a brave girl. She was determined to get her freedom, whether it was by escaping, or by death. She received it through death.  Lisa escaped late at night seven days ago. Two days later she was caught.  She was whipped badly. Four days later, on Christmas, a smile spread across her face, then her last breath escaped from her body. She was free.


(author's note: this last part is completely made up, like the rest of the story)

Lisa said her soul was dead, but she was wrong. Her soul lives on in her journal. This is the fifth time her journal has been published. People from all over the United States are reading it and developing an understanding for how awful slavery really was. Let us learn from Lisa’s journal and the writings of other slaves so such awful things never happen again.

10th grader
Clarkston, Michigan
About the author of A Slave Girl's Journal:I was inspired to write this story after watching the movie "Roots." This is the first story I have written in a journal format and the first story I have written about the subject of slaves. I wrote this it as an assignment for my Challenger L.A. class. My teacher suggested that I send it in. I hope everyone enjoys it.

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