Poetry

I Miss
Getaway Room
Last Night I Rode a Night Mare
I Cherish
This Shade
The Forgotten Land
Man from my Dreams
Suddenly you turn around and . . .
Looks
What friendship means to me
Strange
Star Light & Bright
What About Me?
My Forbidden Love
Eagle Eyes
A Voice and Then Nothing
I Love to Fight
DISILLUSION
Love = Misery
Victims of the Night
Must
Suicidal Loser
Angel
Fiery Deceit
Dove
Mixed Emotions
If You Only Knew
Up in the Sky
Sand Dune Forever
Galloping Through the Wind
Slavery

Essay

In Respect for Charlie:  A Tribute to Dead Pets

Short Story

Glowing Embers

Book Reviews

She's Come Undone

I Miss

His tender looks
His tender kiss
All the things I love,
I miss

The way he sings,
The way he talks,
The way he writes.
the way he walks...

All the things i love,
i miss
his gentle love,
his loving kiss.

Teardropp
9th Grader
Woodbridge, NJ

Getaway Room

She ran to her getaway room, the room where she hid from it all.
She pulled out a blank canvas and began to paint her life.
She wept as she painted her sorrows; indigo, Prussian, navy;
And felt angry as she painted her rage in crimson sanguine and scarlet.
A smile crossed her face while she recreated her sheer happiness; happiness in lemon, dandelion and saffron.
As she stroked lavendar, violet and amethyst, her passions flooded her memory.
She stopped painting, and touched the handle of her brush to her lips.
She stopped painting and thought a minute, a month, a year; and began to
paint her color of realization, a light delicate pink.
The color of her inner peace, the shade of true recognition of her life.
So much more than indigo, crimson, lemon and lavender.
She stepped back from her portrait, satisfied, and left her getaway room.

Shinka
11th Grader
Springfield, MA

Last Night I Rode a Night Mare

Last Night I rode a Night Mare,
heard heart or hooves pounding
visions of my life
in darkness surrounding
We rode through the night
as fast as a song
but our back beat was heavy
and so we rode along
We brought terror with fancies
and desire with fears
We brought despair with butterflies
and carried hope with the tears
We rode through war
through famine and fire
Saw a mothers, worries
and a strong mans desire,
We saw the sanity of madmen
and the madness of the sane
Made a world where the ugly, were lovely
and the beautiful, plain
We rode through the night
and saw the worlds dreams
Saw that not all light is beautiful
and nothing is ever as it seems.

Ashke
11th Grader
Lakewood, CO

I Cherish

I cherish the friendship I have found
Who understands how I feel inside
I cherish the new man in my life
Who'll always kiss me goodnight
I cherish the fact I'm shaking now
A release of energy and pain
I cherish that there's someone in the world
Who's willing to know my name
I cherish the scratches on my arm
The tears that they prevent
I cherish that I have no regrets
None of my actions I repent
I cherish my anger, depression, and tears
And who it makes me be
But why do I care what others think?
Their opinions and views of me?
I cherish those who know I'm alive
Even more so, those who care
I cherish those who try to understand
Who try to make things fair
I cherish the blood seeping out
With it all my fear
I cherish someone who sees me new
Someone that I hold dear
I cherish my brother for hating me
When I was just a kid
But I can't help but wonder, without him,
Would I end up the way I did?
I cherish my view of life and death
And that I can't tell the difference between
I cherish my anger and experience
And the innocent eyes with which I've seen.

Julia
10th Grader
LaPlata, Maryland

This Shade

It's been a long time since I felt this way
So incredibly, impossibly, painfully in love
that I can think of nothing else all the day.
For once I can't afford to let it fade
I must quell this aching loneliness
I must drag my heart from this shade.
I will do it, I shall-
I will drag my heart from this shade...

I've never, ever, felt quite this way
so incredibly, impossibly, deeply hurt
that I can think of nothing else all the day.
I must find some way to make it fade
I must quell this even deeper loneliness
I must drag my heart from this shade.
I will do it, I shall-
I will drag my heart from this shade.
For this too shall pass.

Brad
12th Grader
Northport, New York

The Forgotten Land

When I arose in the morning, my eyes drifted toward the East.
The sun was climbing steadily, a massive, glowing beast.
No other place possessed this fiery orb, this land was like no other,
It contained a special balance, all the creatures were blood brothers.
The birds were singing melodies of untold happiness,
For they knew their land was special, unique, unlike the rest.
The creatures lived in harmony, the balance ever present,
>From the frozen tundra, to the scorching, sand-filled desert.
When one soul was lost, another was born in its place,
All carrion was eaten, nothing went to waste.
When water lingered low, it was replenished by rainfall,
No creatures were greedy, there was plenty for all.
The land was not perfect, but as close as it could come,
The balance ever present, even when a day was done.

The mountains rose up steadily, the forest was small at first,
But then the trees were plentiful, where their seeds had been dispersed.
At the peak of the wooded mountain, began the lands vein,
If creatures drank from this river, the lands spirit did they gain.
Further down the current quickened, a swirling, crystal, mass,
The waterfalls liquid ribbons fell quickly through the pass.
Through the forests and rocks, the river did venture through,
And into the open land, greeting colors of every hue.

The sun was halfway over, the day was half gone by,
With the balance ever present, the land would never die.

The grassy hills rolled back slowly, their tops concealed by mist,
There the springs resided, their water, fairy kissed.
The waters babbled and gurgled to themselves, until they tired at last,
If you listened carefully, you would hear of the lands past.
The prairie grasses gently blew in the breeze, their tops swung round and
round,
No barricade restrained them, their freedom they had found.
The ocean cliffs were rocky, both enormous and high,
They provided shelter for every sea bird who had ever sounded a cry.
At the bottom was the sea, the place where life began,
Deep under the sea floor, the lifeblood of the universe ran.

The sun was quickly sinking, this the creatures saw,
They paused in their activities and watched with special awe.
The celestial show was breathtaking, like many nights before,
But still the creatures watched the heavens, as the stars grew more and
more.
Much time passed in the night, but the creatures were still transfixed,
They watched the other star clusters, far off planets in the midst.
The night was halfway over, another day would soon begin,
The balance would remain forever in the lives of the lands treasured kin.

If only humans could find this land and find inner peace throughout,
Never know hunger, plagues, or war, never have a need to cry out.
But we knew this land before, so many decades in the past,
But we changed it so dramatically, the balance did not last.
Now our land is much different than what it used to be,
Because of our actions we are suffering, we were not willing to pay the fee.
If you look and listen carefully, the balance is still there,
And it can grow and prosper with much time, love, and care.
So if humans still want to live in peace, and each one lends a hand,
We will be forever happy, when we find the Forgotten Land.

Andria
8th Grader
Bradford, MA

Man from my Dreams

From the dark of the night he appeared
Coming toward me, his long shaggy beard
Sotty old clothes and sandpaper hands
He reached out to touch me and far away lands

Tears swelled up in his ancient eyes
They screamed for help with bloody cries
He turned away and fell to his knees
Calling for help with crackled ol pleas

I crept a bit closer and knelt down beside him
Lokked into his eyes and read lines between him
The weeping stopped and I came nearer
He looked up to greet me, his face was much clearer

I stared for a while then his expression changed
A small smile grew as me his eyes ranged
Then I just giggled and he joined in too
His eyes filled with laughter then away he flew

And gone was he this man from my dreams
Hiddenin the darkness not too be seen
Yet I can still hear him calling out to me
No matter where I may wander, there he will be

Mandy
9th Grader
GFH, AB, Canada

Suddenly you turn around and . . .

Suddenly you turn around and the seasons have changed,
the colors have faded,
from beautiful to deep,dark colors dripping with sorrow.
Suddenly you turn around and everyone's gone.
No one's around to share your sorrow,
to help you through good times and bad.
Suddenly you turn around and you can't understand
why everyones gone and left you by your bedside.
Alone, in the darkest depths of pain and stress,
Alone, no ones shoulder to lean on,
to cry, and heal from your wounds and scars,
Alone, no one to turn to.
Alone, to find no ones there to lend a hand.
Suddenly you turn around and sadness pours all around you,
like the ocean waves,crashing along the jagged rocks at the sea's base.
Suddenly you turn around and you realize you are the rocks,
and the waves become the problems and worries you have,
coming down hard and crashing into you
more powerfully than the first time.
Suddenly you turn around and you realize you're not alone,
you look into the mirror and find another soul.
A soul screaming to get out.
You grievesome more,suddenly to realize everything will get better,
your two souls will combine as one and deal with your problems,
as a whole.
Not as one, but a whole.
Suddenly you turn around and the seasons have changed,
the colors are no longer faded, but beautiful again.
Suddenly you turn around and you realize
your grieving is done for now,
until next time the waves will crash into you as hard as they did that day.
The water is now calm and steady,
clear sailing ahead,problem free, so you think,
but you know,deep down, the current will rise,
and the waves will crash and fall onto the jagged rocks,
as they did once before.

Alexandria
7th Grader
Greenlawn, New York

Looks

His eye contact is so strong that it speaks,
It is so strong that it makes me weak.

All I want to do is talk to him but I don't know what to say,
I get so shy when he looks at me in
that way.

I know that he watches me,
Because thats all I can see.

LaToya
11th Grader
Sussex, Virginia

What friendship means to me

What friendship means to me
Is something that will never be
Do you ever wonder what its like to have a best friend
Some one who would give a heart to leand
That is what friendship means to me
A friend that does not turn away form me
A friend that would not ditch me at all
A friend to make sure I stand tall
A friend that understands my pain
A friend is what I need to gain
A friend that is close to me
Is something that I wish never flew away from me

Joy
10th Grader
Darrington, Washington

Strange

I felt something strange
Rising in my blood,
Growing hotter and stronger,
Overtaking who I was,
Making me compromise
All that I stood for.
Curiosity and want,
I did not fight back.
I let it consume me whole.
I suppressed my screams
As it ripped open my soul
And burnt in my heart.
I became human after all.

Emily
12th Grader
Colomibana, Ohio

Star Light & Bright

Star light, star bright,
Ive wished on every star in sight,
I wish I may, I wish I might,
I wish this wish all through the night.
If you were here, Id hold you close,
If you were mine, Id love you most,
If I could tell you all these things,
And all the dreams Ive every dreamed,
Youd see just how crazy I am for you,
And how what Im saying will always be true.

I have this fear of being let down,
You see its happened before, and I hit the ground,
I lost all hope thinking you were all the same,
And wondering again was I just a name.
I dont want to be another face in the crowd,
I want to be yours, and make you proud.
I can do all these things if you will trust me,
And happy together forever we will be.

Andrea
Graduate
Arlington, Texas

What About Me?

What about me?
What about my thoughts, my feelings, my moods?
Am I the only one that worries about these things?

What about me?
Why didn't I get that shot at playing that action hero?
You know the one, in that big budget movie, with that great big salary?

What about me?
Why don't I get to go out with that good looking woman?
You know the one, who's on all the magazine covers with the hair?

What about me?
And how come nobody thinks about me when Nobel Prize time rolls around?
I mean, I know I'm not the real obvious choice here, but come on, not even
a nomination?

What about me?
Am I the only one that worries about these things?
And don't think I've forgotten about that woman, either. The one with the
hair.

What about me?

Shaun
8th Grader
Port Huron, Michigan

My Forbidden Love

Could we be destined to be?
Confusion is all I feel.
I can't explain the chemistry.
Can't even explain what you do to me.
My Forbidden Love.
We both belong to someone else.
But why is it everytime we are together,
I lose my breathe?
Can't explain it.
Nor can I detain it.
What can I do?
My Forbidden Love.
Never once have I made a move,
Never letting my thoughts consume me.
Oh how I have prayed. . . .
Please let this feeling go away.
I know I must take a chance.
To find out if there is really romance.
My mind changes like the weather.
But some how this is different.
My Forbidden Love.
Patience is the path I have decided to take.
Holding my feelings inside 'till the perfect date.
But until that time,
You'll go your way,
And i'll go mine.
And you will remain. . . .
MY FORBIDDEN LOVE.

Audrey
10th Grader
Miami, Florida

Eagle Eyes

Still sapphire pool of time
Breaths of life scatter wide
Hope sends ray of light burning
Like laughter on a gentle breeze

Colour paths playing masquerade
Shade and reveal secrets of ages
Tempting to join and be lost
To beauty in its full array

To bring light and dark
The spiral turns full again
Fly high in trails of air
Time allows your eagle eyes to soar

Sarah
11th Grader
St. George, Utah

A Voice and Then Nothing

Before there was god
sprang civilization
de nihilo nihil
nothing came from something

before god, there was peace
vox, et praeterea nihil
and the earth came before the sky
and the beasts held the yoke of man
de nihilo nihil

god created all...
de nihilo nihil
vox, et praeterea nihil.
But of nothing can come nothing
but a voice
nihil nihilo
vox, et praeterea nihil, nihil
viva voce
we are here


(there's a little bit of Latin in there, so here's what it means
de nihil nihilo means 'from nothing comes nothing'
vox, et praeterea nihil means 'a voice and nothing more'
and viva voce is 'the living voice')

Vada
10th Grader
Harrison, Arkansas

I Love to Fight

    I love to fight! Day or night. All I have to do is throw the first
punch, eeew right in the nose, what a nice touch.
    I love to fight! I usually hit with my right, until I knock em out of
sight the only weapons I choose to abuse are that of my fist. Believe me you
dont want to be next on my list.
    I love to fight! Some people say Im crazy, just beware if you say it to
my face, youre in for a scare and you better have a can of mace. cause Im
goin be on top of you I a secon trowen lefts and rights; just a deckin. so
my last words of advice are Just be nice, and dont get in my face or be a
disgrace Cause now you know, I love to fight.

1999

Travis
8th Grader
Houston, Texas

DISILLUSION

Convict me, put me behind bars, lock me up and throw away the key
Hate me, stifle my aspirations, deny me everything I want to be
Pain me, laugh at my misery, stab me with your ever cruel hurt
Shame me, slander well my hear, kill all my feelings of self worth

Scare me, haunt me night and day, leave me not a moment's peace of rest
Offend me, scorn with all your might, put my strength and weakness to the test
Deceive me, pretned to be all good, then transform into the monster of all
bad
Damn me, doom me to salvation, assure yourself I'll live forever sad

Trap me, trap me in my mind, so my cries for help may go unheard
Suffer me, slash my pride to pieces, threaten me to speak not a word
Anger me, I long to run away, but there is no place left for me to go
Kill me make me dead inside, wound for my blood until you make it flow

Chris
11th Grader
Trinidad

Love = Misery

Without you i'm in darkness,
Without you I'm in pain.
Without you there's no sunlight,
Without you there's just rain.

You're the one I trusted,
So I gave you my whole heart.
But everyday that passes,
It's slowly falling apart.

It's breaking because you've found,
Someone else to recieve your love,
And who am I to argue?
Only God know the truth above.

I've never felt this way.
About any other man.
I'll be really honest,
I don't think I ever can.

At first what i felt was happiness,
But then I learned it would never be.
Now when I think of you,
All i feel is misery.

Believe me i'm not blaming
My feelings all on you.
I just wish that I could make you
Feel these feelings too.

That would make it easier
Because finally you would see,
how much I truely love you
And how much you mean to me.

I can't express the emotions
That are flowing through my mind.
It devistates me to think
That your heart I may never find.

You already are aware,
of what you are to me.
aybe I should give up,
before I lose my dignaty.

But what is more important?
Only I know what is right.
Instead i'll go on dreaming
Through the day and through the night.

The truth is I'd do anything
You wanted me to do.
I'd swim across the ocean
And climb a mountain too.

As long as I'm alive,
i'll never ever be free,
Because you hold my heart
And your the only one I trusted with the key.

Lindsay
11th Grader
Oshawa, Ontario, Canada

Victims of the Night

When twilight comes the shadows play
upon the cool green floor
the summer breeze may kiss my face
and leave me wanting more

the rolling waves upon the beach
will murmur midnight sighs
and let a shiver ripple through
the scattered velvet skies

the water's wind of lotus flower
dances on my lips
I long to swallow every sense
in many selfish sips

I lean against the willow tree
my patience knows no bounds
I wait alone for my dear love
and drink the night's sweet sounds

And then he comes, a shadowed shape
and then a radiant man
his face ablaze with my desire
and then he takes my hand

Side by side we wade along
the shallow silvered lake
to be here on the moonlit beach
was more than we could take

and now we are but one with dusk
Children of the moon
for love can drive a man insane
and make a child swoon

but when you come to the willow tree
in the hours of twilight
do not forget about the love
us victims of the night

Meg
9th Grader
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Must

Do you ever think,
About what happened that night?
Do you ever wonder?
I just thought you might.

I thought youd like to know
Youre always on my mind,
Escaping from the thought of you
Is always hard to find.

I just want to know one thing,
Do you ever think of me?
Am I ever in your thoughts
My face do you ever see?

Can you feel your hands upon me
Like they once were?
Can you feel my rapid heartbeat,
I need to know for sure

Did you ever love me,
Or were you just in it for lust
Did you feel the burden to kiss me,
Or did you feel you must?

Nikki
9th Grader
Hazelton, Idaho

Suicidal Loser

You think
You're so special when you write those depressing poems
And that YOU are the only one that feels that certain way
Your depression makes me ill

Why would you ever write a poem
And give it to me to ponder over
If you weren't trying to tell me something?

Do you really think that I don't know how
it feels
To be a teenager?

And even if you did kill yourself I would
maybe cry on the outside
to show that I did care                  at one time

but now you know what my true feelings are
for you are so foolish and selfish as to take your life
because you're
sad
sick
dejected
or ugly
maybe even all four!

Can't you see it has grown old?

Go cry to you diary
I have  enough things to worry about        loser

Evangelia
9th Grader
Cincinnatti, Ohio

Angel

A black hue defines the skies color, filling the soul with infinate
sadness. I look over to as you fall to the floor. No movement comes from
your body.
Your baby blue eyes that once took my breath away, now closed forever.
Your lushious red lips that once tasted so sweet, now pink and pale, never
will kiss again. your skin that was once so soft, warm, and beautiful, now
pale, cold, and depressing.
As, I stand staring at you, a lump forms in my throat. Tears flowing down
my cheeks, like rain from an angry sky. I see you fly away, with beautiful
white wings of glad grace, into the arms of heavens divine white light.

Jamie
11th Grader
Dearborn, Michigan

Fiery Deceit

One shade of pale green,
enchants the haunted walls.
The rooms are so desolate.
Motionless figures are suspended
in the air.


The ghastly child looms
around the doorway.
No emotion, sorrow, or tears
are expressed by her ghastly face.
No regret for what she has done.

An ominous black figure invades the background.
His being:
a symbol of what has just transpired.
His expression:
a calm and collected show of deceit and treachery
Deserted and Lonely.


Suddenly, a flash of light.
Shades of black, red, and fiery orange,
attack the spectacle.
It has come for vengeance,
It has come for them.
There shall be retribution.

Joe
9th Grader
Cincinnatti, Ohio

Dove

I lay awake and wonder why,
when the day comes I have to die.
Kiss my family all goodbye,
Remember when i was young my lalabyes.
Goodbye to my family,goodbye to my friends,
All my pain and suffering has come to a end.
I am no longer here, I am now far above,
To watch over you and fly as a dove.

Brandie
8th Grader
Beaufort, North Carolina

Mixed Emotions

My heart sinks to the level of eternal darkness
My eyes shut tightly to block out bothersome tears
My head goes light
My vision goes weak
I lash out in a blinding rage, destroying everything in my path
I am a hurricane
Suddelny I am satisfied
A sly smile slowly creeps across my burning face
I am a great cloud floating away
I am everything
I brag and boast about my abundant greatness
An insult is thrown harshley at my soul
And I start my emotions again

Kirby
8th Grader
Arlington, Texas

If You Only Knew

Why are some humans so arrogant and cold,
Most think of themselves as being fearless and bold.
Though many do not understand how they are,
Not knowing that sometimes they go too far.
But how could a human act in such a way,
Like in this story I have here today...

A Dog sits waiting in the cold and dour sun,
Too devotedly faithful to leave, too frightened to run.
He's been here for days now with not a thing to do
But sit alone by the road and wait for you.
He doesnt understand why you left him that day.
He thought you and he were just stopping to play.
He's certain you'll come back, and that's why he stays.
For how long will he suffer? For how many more days?
He cries and wails at the moon at night,
Its not just out of missing you, but also of fright.
He dwells on the past as if it were today,
He remembers all the loving words, to him, you would say.
Like the day when you found him wandering on the street,
You took him into your home,  promised him love and named him Pete.
Finally in exhaust, the memory gets hazy,
If you would just come back, hed still love you like crazy.
His legs are growing weak, his throat, parched and dry
He's getting sick from the hunger and falls, with a sigh.
He lays his head down, then closes his eyes.
I wish you could see how this waiting dog dies.

Melissa
11th Grader
Hickman, California

Up in the Sky

Looking up in the sky
something catches my eye
a bright glare of light fills the sky
I feel I should close my eyes
but something won't let me
through the brightness I see a figure
could it be
oh god it is
I have missed you for so long
stay with me don't go
as the light starts to fade
my heart goes cold
see for me to be happy
I need you in my world

Lori
12th Grader
Hollspple, Pennsylvania

Sand Dune Forever

Wishmaster make my wish come true.
Take me to a place so quiet and new.
Warm beneath my feet,
cool upon my face,
is there such a place?

Fairwell to the day, no need for tears.
The millions of twinkles will dry up those tears.

Home is far away,
But there's no need for dismay.
Because the sand dune's forever,
Forever and more.

The waves provide the humble sense of joy,
There the man becomes a boy.
We wait anxiously for that special sound,
The sound of jets flying around and around.

Deer cross the road,
as we long to catch a toad.
Birds flying across the sky.
No need to ask the question why.

Because the sand dune is forever.
Forever...
and more!

Kelly
9th Grader
Cincinnatti, Ohio

Galloping Through the Wind

You gallop through the wind...
on warm summer nights
along the shore of an ocean
as your hooves maintain a steady beat
every time they meet the smooth, white sand

You gallop through the wind...
when you are alone
and no one else is in sight to watch
your mane and tail
flapping behind you from your immense speed

You gallop through the wind...
while your slick, black coat
reflects the white light of the moon overhead
and your big, brown eyes
stare directly in front of you, looking out
in the distance

As you gallop through the wind

Melissa
9th Grader
Cincinnatti, Ohio
Slavery

Every white man, woman, and child condemned me,
Not a light-skinned human alive will dare to befriend me.
What have I done?
Skin color caused this unreasonable shun.
Day after day, I spend slaving.
Day after day, whipped into behaving.
Whipped into a mindless obeying state,
The master insists this is my God-given fate.
This is because of the color of my skin?
Though Ive committed no terrible sin?
A color is the cause for the hardships of life?
A color is the cause for all this pain and strife?
I work day after day
For less food than the dogs, and absolutely no pay.
My wife must undergo beatings and rape,
Only one choice is left: escape!
Well leave with the secret song code,
And travel aboard the Underground Railroad.

Heather
8th Grader
Lilburn, Georgia

About the Author

I'm a 14 year old female.  I started writing in fifth grade, but not
seriously util last year.

In Respect for Charlie:  A Tribute to Dead Pets

   Most everyone has experienced the death of a beloved family
pet. These times are met with an attitude of seriousness, and utter
solemnity.
Death is not a funny thing, and any soul should be mourned the same. In the
many times my pets have passed on, be they dogs, cats, or golden junebugs,  we have always buried them in an honorable and memorable way. Sometimes, though, things dont go as planned.  This is the case of my adored animals Charlotte, Excelsior, and GoldfishX.
   Tupperware is a wonderful thing; so useful.  Into this wondrous
contraption, was interred Charlotte, our hermaphrodite hamster.  Charlottes, well, Charlies..,no.. Charlotte. I think it was.. well, anyway, the hamsters sex was a bit of an enigma.  The pet lived a couple of years in my sisters care, and played in the warm sunlight that filtered through the shiny tubes, ducts, and pipes of his/her cage.  On the day that whatever-it-was died, something snapped in my sisters brain.  As we walked down the hill of our backyard, I noticed the gleam of plastic in Lauras hand, different from the usual cardboard box coffin thats usually used in our familys ritual burials.  She was planning on entombing Charlotte/Charlie in the ground in expensive plastic Tupperware.  Mother would be enflamed if she knew. But Laura was hiding the container, and the hamster, where mom would never find either.
   I guess Im morbid. Maybe I think too much, or Im extravagant.   Is
giving a beetle a burial service a little eccentric? All things great and small
deserve a little piece of immortality.  Excelsior, as Anne and I named him, was a gorgeous golden junebug that had been living in Annes basement.  Living on stale air and carpet lint, Excelsior lived a good life.. for a bug.  When we discovered him dead one day, everyone looked a little down.  Excelsior, age unknown, son of Gladys and Paul, died in the usual belly up position.   The only survivors were me, Anne, and a few wayward locusts.  It was a small funeral, which Excelsior would have liked.
   What is the life expectancy of a goldfish? In my knowledge and experience of ichthyology, anywhere between 3 years and 28 minutes after they arrive from Wal-Mart.
Most of the time, its a waste to even name them.  Such is the case with
GoldfishX, who represents a large number of fish who obviously died of sorrow after
being made to leave the tank at Wally-World.   When he decided to go belly-up (literally) mom alerted me to the fish warranty.  Fish warranty? you ask.   "If the animal dies within 72 hours of the purchase,  your money will be given back, with proof of purchase," my mother recited.  Now wheres that darned receipt?  The only  proof of purchase that could be found was the actual fish.  Mommy wrapped him up in saran wrap and placed  him in the freezer.  Ill never forget the look on the cashiers face when mom placed the frozen fishstick in her hand the next morning and asked for an exchange.

   Right now, I actually do have living pets, and strangely enough a sane
view on mortality.  Charlotte/Charlie, Excelsior, and GoldfishX lived happy, if
short lives.  Their burials were mere quirks in the usual routine of death in my family.  This might sound weird, but, doesnt everyone need a little excitement in their afterlife?

Vada
11th Grader
Harrison, AZ

The value of friendship is a great thing to treasure. When its put to the test, youd think that it would be able to uphold anything, even death...

Glowing Embers

October 31, 1973 six friends were walking home from tic tacking, egging, scaring little kids, and whatever else fifteen year old kids do on Halloween night. Bobby saw the cemetery ahead.

He said to Rick, " I dare you to walk into the cemetery and go to the statue." The statue is said to possess red eyes and if you enter on Halloween night the fiery eyes will haunt you for a year.

Rick being the macho man that he is replies," Fine, but Julies coming with me."

Julie screams all the way to the cold, steel gates. They enter the cemetery. As they walk to the statue, they see red eyes in front of them. They turn around and theres red eyes. They look left and right and theres red eyes.

Julie said," Oh my god Rick. We gotta get out of here."

Rick responds," Theyre everywhere. We cant escape."

Julie replies," Rick run. Ill manage to escape. Just go get help."

He looks at her and she looks at him with a look that shes serious. He kisses her and dashes off. Rick gets to the gates of the cemetery.

Bobby said," Rick, wheres Julie?"

Rick replies," Red eyes, red eyes, they were everywhere. Julie needs our help. She told me to run and get help."

Just then they hear a scream. Rick, Bobby, Kirstin, Tyler, and Lizzie run to the spot where just minutes ago Julie had been standing.

Rick screams," JULIE! Oh my god, I shouldnt have left her alone."

Kirstin and Lizzie start to look around yelling," JULIE! Nice joke Jules! JULIE!"

Tyler looks at his watch. He said," Its after midnight."

Bobby said," and your point is..."

Tyler replies," If what Rick is saying is true about the red eyes, then they have Julie and considering it was Halloween, she wont return till next Halloween night.

Kirstin said," Youve been reading one too many horror books."

Tyler responds," No, its the truth or at least thats what the legend is believed to say." Rick said," Well what should we do? We cant exactly tell the police the truth. Theyll think were nuts or worse that we killed her."

Lizzie said," We can tell the police that we were all suppose to meet in front of the school but she never showed. We waited but she didnt come."

Kirstin replies," So what your saying is that we lie about our best friends disappearance?" Bobby said," Whatelse can we do not to incriminate ourselves..."

Rick said," Shes my girlfriend, (pause), she was my girlfriend and I wont lie."

Tyler replies," what other choices do we have?"

Rick responds," Fine, thats the story that well go with, (pause), at least till next year."

What the five remaining friends didnt know was that the red eyes knew they were there and the eyes would strike revenge for disturbing the peace of their world on their night. The police, Julies parents, and the rest of Fort Wayne, Indiana believed the teens story. Two weeks went by, Kirstin and Bobby were rollerblading at night. They came up to the cemetery. Just then a truck driver came the other way on the street aiming at the two helpless teenagers. Before they could escape the truck hit them and both were killed instantly. The trucker vanished into thin air but not before his eyes turned glowing ember.

The next day at school everyone was mourning the deaths of the two young students. Rick, Lizzie, and Tyler sat in the cafeteria discussing the night before.

Lizzie said sobbing," I cant believe it. First Julie, now Kirstin and Bobby, whos next?" Rick responds," What do you mean whos next? We didnt have anything to do with the hit and run last night."

Lizzie said," Well if you think about it, there should have been some trace of evidence that a truck hit them."

Rick said," Why are you guys so sure that a truck killed them?"

Tyler responds," The impact of their bodies... A car wouldnt have been able to do that much damage."

Rick said," Ok, so what if what your saying is true, the truck vanished. We cant exactly stop the deceased from killing us."

A few months past. Lizzie, Tyler, and Rick are still alive but not for long. Tyler was driving home from work April Fools night. He drove up to a stop sign at the cemetery. Tyler looked over into the creepy, dreary place where lifeless bodies decay remembering his friends and the nights of their deaths. When he looked back in front of him red eyes were there. He slammed on the gas but the red eyes created a flash blinding Tyler, making the car drive into a telephone pole throwing his body from his vehicle.

When the police arrived on the scene, they found a poem written by Tyler to his deceased friends. The poem was titled," Good-Bye my Friends". The poem said,"

I didnt know what to say,

when you told me you had to go away

with all the time we spend together

I thought our fun would last forever

Now youre going far away,

I dont know what to tell you to make you stay

But the time is almost near

I cant hold back my fear.

Youre the best friends I ever had,

you were with me through good times and bad

I didnt know what to say,

when you told me you had to go away."

The poem went on his tombstone. After Tylers funeral, Lizzie and Rick went to Lizs house. They discussed the deaths of their friends. They went to the library to find information about vampires, ghouls, spirits, and the rumor of the town. Lizzie says," Rick, we gotta beat this thing, whatever it is." Rick replies," Dont worry, we will."

Time passes, its October 31, 1974, Lizzie and Rick return to the cemetery. They walk to where Julie disappeared a year before. A couple minutes pass and no sign of their friends, just then Julie appears.

She said," Rick, Lizzie Ive been waiting for you."

Rick and Lizzie reply in unison with a sense of shock," Julie."

Rick runs to her and kisses her. Julies eyes turn red while Rick gives her a passionate kiss. Rick and Julie then face Lizzie. Their eyes turn red. Throughout the cemetery all you could hear was the scream of Lizzie.

October 25, 1998 the students at Fort Wayne High School in History 9X have a history project. The teacher, Mr. Felder, assigned groups of four. The assignment was to find information on the town and present an oral presentation to the class. Four students- Denise, Jonathan, Allison, and Alex who dont exactly get along are thrown together in this project. Denise is a feisty, snobbish, class president, straight A girl who looks at life as a mind game. Jonathan is a nerd, brainy, weird like Steve Urkel kind of kid. Allison is a semi-popular, into sports (soccer, basketball, and track), and very smart. Alex is semi-popular, plays baseball, and straight A student. The four intellects dont speak to each other due to their popularity rank. Mr. Felder tells the class that they should get into their groups and discuss their project.

Denise said," Oh my god. I get stuck with these low lives, oh yeah, the unpopular."

Alex replies," Yeah well its no picnic here either, like I want to be in a group with you." Jonathan said," Guys, I really think that we should just work on our project. Maybe we could divide the assignment into four presentations and just do our own part."

Allison responds," Thats a good idea."

Denise said," Yeah, I agree. We can divide the project up by the past, the town legends, the population, and the climate."

Alex said," Ok, but who takes what?"

Mr. Felder is walking around the classroom asking the students of each group about the project. When he gets to the group that doesnt get along with each other, he tells them that it is a group project and they will not divide the project into separate groups.

Allison said," I have a book about the town. We can also look Fort Wayne up on the internet."

Alex replies,"Alright. When can we get together to do this project."

Denise said," The sooner we get together the faster we get this whole project done and then I dont have to look your way ever again."

Jonathan responds rolling his eyes," What is everyone doing afterschool?"

The three other members of the history project replied together," nothing."

Allison said," Ok then, well all meet at my house at 3:30."

The school day breezed by and soon enough it was 3:30 p.m. After the three students arrived at Allisons house they went into the computer room. They sat on the couch.

Alex said, " I think what Denise said earlier in history class well thats how we should do the project."

Allison said," Ok, well heres the book about the town and the computers right over there."

Denise replies, " We can split up... 2 on the computer searching and 2 skimming the book."

Jonathan said," Alex and I will take the computer and you two can do research on the book."

Jonathan and Alex start searching for the population and interesting myths on Fort Wayne.

As they are doing this Allison said," Where would you like to start, the towns legend or the past."

Denise responds," The towns legend sounds interesting."

"Ok sounds good to me"

"What page is it on?", Denise says taking the book off of the end table.

"136"

Denise starts skimming the page vigorously.

She all of a sudden said, " OH MY GOD, theres a legend about some statue that possesses red eyes. Oh yeah and like any of that is true."

Jonathan interrupts," Theres a news article on here and 6 friends and there odd disappearances after a fun of Halloween."

The four students look at each other with a look of scaredness, but yet lets uncover the mystery kind of look.

Denise said," If we can discover what happened that night then we could be famous. Maybe even a movie about it..." The other students glance at each other and finally respond," COOL!" Alex thinks to himself, "Yeah and maybe theyll call SCREAM 5."

Denise, Jonathan, Alex, and Allison didnt exactly know what they were getting themselves into. They decided to go to the school early the next morning so they could ask Mr. Felder if they could report on the information that they found. They were now standing outside Mr. Felders classroom. Jonathan knocked on the door.

Mr. Felder yelled," Come in."

The four students entered the boring, historical classroom.

The teacher looked at them and said," I already told you that this is a group project and you will work together."

The students stared at each other with bewilderedment.

Then Denise spoke up," No, were here to ask you if we could do our project on the towns legend."

Mr. Felder said," uhh... yeah, I guess."

Jonathan replies," We chose to do this as our project because we have reason to believe that the six students in 1973-74 were somehow tied into the legend."

The bell for homeroom rings. After the students leave the classroom Mr. Felder rolls his eyes and says outloud," Kids... the more I try to understand them, the less I do."

It was finally sixth period, history class for Denise, Allison, Jonathan, and Alex. Mr. Felder asked the students to get into groups and discuss their project some more. Alex says that they should go to the cemetery on Halloween night to see exactly what happened. Everyone agrees. They decide to meet again afterschool to gather more information before the big night. At the end of class Mr. Felder tells the students that the project is due November 2.

Afterschool the students gather at Allisons house again. This time they dont waste anytime. Denise and Allison go to the library and get old newspaper articles dealing with all of the teens mysterious accidents in 1973-74. Meanwhile, Jonathan is busy typing away on the computer. Alex is reading the book titled "Fort Wayne: Everything You DONT Want To Know". Allison and Denise return from the library with a handful of run-off copies of newspaper clippings.

During the next four days the students do all of the research that they can. When the 31st of October finally arrives they sneak out at 11:30 and meet at Jonathans house which is just a block away from the site. They walk to the steel, cold iron gates of the cemetery where 24 years earlier the obscure deaths took place.

Alex said," Maybe we should walk to the statue."

Jonathan replies," Yeah, just to recreate the moment..."

Allison says unsure," umm.... o.k. maybe we should."

Denise says," Its 11:50 p.m., if were going to uncover the truth we better do it now."

The four scared fourteen year olds stare at each other with anxiety, scaredness, and hope for the truth. Alex is the first one to enter. Shortly after the others follow. They walk hand in hand to the statue with glowing ember eyes. They look around, each looking in another direction.

Denise is the first to talk in the cemetery saying," Something moved... over there... I dont know what it is..."

Jonathan replies," Theres red eyes right over there."

Allison said," What should we do?"

Denise responds," For one thing we cant let history repeat itself."

Alex replies," Im speechless... theres nothing we can do."

Just then you could hear the laughter of six friends. The four, now called friends, turned to where the sound came from. They see six teenagers about the ages of fifteen and sixteen.

The one teenager said," Hi. Im Julie. Have you come to play too?"

Lisa
11th Grader
Lehighton, Pennsylvania

She's Come Undone
by Wally Lamb.

This is the life story of Dolores Price, an over-weight, abused girl from a divorced household, written geniously by a man. Lamb follows her from age 4 to age 40, and it's amazing the way he describes things that happen only to woman from a perspective that is so uncannily a man's. This story deals with divorce, over-eating, depression, rape, insanity, and controversial issues.
I'm not sure i'd recommend it to anyone who is immature enough to get embarrassed at sexual situations or language. It has adult content (though very well done) and a lot of 'vulgarity', but that only emphasizes this story's real life objective.  Dolores goes through just about every problem imaginable, and at times, this book just made me want to cry and scream. It's an interactive story. I suggest reading it, but not for anyone under the mental age of 14. It's tough at parts, and isn't really appropriate for immature minds. 

Vada
10th Grader
Harrison, AZ

 
         
 

Last Updated
11/30/03

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