Poetry Essay/Prose Short Story
Black and White

Through the eyes of a child
all the world is a black and white photograph.
It is seen in shades of gray.
And on the human spectrum
all men's skin is just another shade
of the same color.
The lightest black is as different from the darkest black
as it is from white.
Each hue is unique
so no colors can be grouped as one.
And who is to say where white stops and black begins?
10th grader
Columbia, SC
I have wanted to be a writer since third grade, and through writing I hope to make people see the world a little differently.
Equal Tears

Do you cry for me the same
Do your tears fall like mine do
Do you cry for me the same way
As the way I cry for you

Does your throat start to swell
As the tears flood to your eyes
Does the acids of your tears
Burn your cheeks as they do mine

Does the blood rush through your veins
As you scream inside your head
Do your thoughts rip you apart
As you weep inside your bed

Does your face get red and hot
When you tremble from the pain
Does your voice close over
As the questions drive you insane

And the answers somewhere inside you
The answers I wish you knew
But the greatest question remains
Do you cry for me, like the way I cry for you?
11th grader
Guelph, Ontario Canada
Ok so this is my first piece that I have submitted to teenlit.com and hopefully not my last.
I have posted many of my other poems on other teen poetry sites so I'm not real nervous of what ppl are going to say...I would however really apprecialte constructive critisms only that way if there is an area that i should improve in my writting I can do so without feeling bad about my poems.
I have many poems so if you ppl like this one let me know and I will hopefully be able to post more!!

i sit around tracing my fingers over the contours of your face,
watching how the light hits the walls in dark, offbeat shadows.

listening to the trees outside saying, hey love, where'd you go...
reminds me of unfinished dreams
and quiet smiles.  and i want to sleep forever within
the gray mornings light resting on me like a second skin...
but all i taste are the scattered words and intense loneliness
drifting amongst the scents of air.
and all i have are the unknown feelings that hover above, that
swallow my inner stomach with an anonymous hunger.

and remembering today how i sank a little further as i stared at my hands,
their creases lined with dirt, makes me realize how dim
everything seems when i watch the light from the window
dance upon the walls with uncertainty of shape and of
who they might be.

10th grader
Forgotten Worries

Liz Miller had blue eyes and perfectly straight black hair.  She had the California tan and was thin enough to be a model.  Practically her only flaw was the fact that she barely smiled.  When confronted with the fact, she always argued that she was perfectly content.  Some thought she had one other tiny flaw, though.  They thought she was too skinny.  But Liz didn't consider that a flaw.  She was unaware that the girls in her school whispered over her alleged anorexia and bulimia problems.  She didn't notice her mother's intent gaze as Liz grudgingly used her fork to play with her food.

Like any other girl, she flaunted what she thought to be positive aspects of her body.  She wore short skirts to show her thin thighs and light colors to accentuate her tan.  Today she was wearing a short white summer dress and every now and then her boyfriend would steal a glance at her crossed legs, proud she was his, only wishing the skirt was a little shorter.

His glances stood unnoticed by Liz who was fixated on the television.  She was leaning comfortably on the armrest of her big blue chair, occasionally playing with her dark hair, the way she always did when bored or nervous.

Max tore his eyes from his girlfriend and followed her gaze to the television.  He was seated in the chair a couple of feet away from her and he knew that if her mother wasn't in the next room, she would be seated comfortably in his lap.  He sighed and tried to watch what she was watching.  It was the news, some report about a girl who had killed herself.  Max didn't know her, but she had apparently been around their age, which was seventeen.

Suddenly, Liz turned to Max and stated as if they had been in the middle of a conversation, "Don't you agree with me?  How could somebody kill herself?"

It took Max a moment to realize that Liz was asking him a question, but when he did, he responded, "Oh yes, horrible," wishing he had paid more attention to the news report.

"Why would someone do that?" she asked, almost rhetorically.  "I wonder what was going through her mind."

Max, unsure what to say, just shrugged.  "Don't worry about it, Liz."

She acted as if she didn't hear him.  She turned back to the television and turned the volume up slightly.  They were showing pictures of the girl.

"I don't recognize her..." Liz said, "Do you?"

Max just shook his head, not realizing that his actions went unnoticed by Liz.  She wasn't even looking at him.  He had moved his eyes back from the television to his girlfriend, eager to drop the subject.  He glanced out the door to see if her mother was still in the kitchen, but she was gone.

"Why don't you just forget about it?" Max asked, "She killed herself.  It was her fault."  He smiled mischievously, "Now why don't you come sit on my lap?"

Max was unsure whether Liz just didn't hear him or she chose not to respond.  She adjusted the strap of her dress and tucked her hair behind her ear.  "It makes me problems seem pretty small," she said turning toward Max, "you know?" 

Max stood and walked towards her. He grabbed the remote and turned the television off. "Stop being so serious, Liz. I'm your boyfriend and I'm over at your house. Don't you want to do more than just watch the news?"

Liz's eyes glazed over for a moment, confused. Then she looked up at Max. "You don't think the news is important?"

Max rolled his eyes. "Of course it's important, but it barely affects us." His voice softened. "Come on." He got down on his knees next to her chair. He put his hand behind her neck and kissed her.

But Liz pulled away, "Max, you're distracting me," she reprimanded. "I want to think about this for a little while. She caused her own death. She removed herself from this world. Isn't that profound? How can you say that it doesn't affect us?" She leaned her back against the chair, grabbed the remote control and turned the television back on.

Max let out an annoyed groan. "Liz, what's the point of me even coming over if all you're going to do is ignore me?"

Liz had managed to block him out. Her eyes were once more fixated on the chattering anchorman.

"Screw this," Max said. He turned and waked to the doorway. At the doorway, he glanced back. He had expected some sort of reaction from Liz, but she was still staring intently at the screen.

With one last annoyed sigh, he left the room.

Honestly Liz was glad he left. It was true that she didn't notice he was gone until five minutes later, but all he was doing was hindering her concentration. She liked Max, but he wasn't a deep guy. He had good looks going for him, but that was about all. It was obvious he wanted Liz to be the same way. Sometimes she wanted to have intelligent conversations and she couldn't get those out of Max.

Liz shifted her attention to the news.  The girl who had killed herself was named Donna Lewis.  She was gorgeous.  Liz couldn't think of what would cause her to do it.  A couple minutes later, Liz noticed the anchorman had shifted to a lighter topic: football.

She turned the television off, but stared at the blank television screen, still pondering what she had just heard.  She shut her eyes and tried to put herself in the same situation as Donna Lewis.  She invented motives for herself.  She pictured herself staring at the bottle of pills and contemplating whether to take them or not.

"There's no point to it." Liz said, her eyes slowly opening.  "If you live on, who says life won't improve?  If you commit suicide, then that's it.  Your life is over.  Bam."

It was at this point that Liz noticed that Max had gone.  She'd forgotten that he was there so she didn't give his leaving a second thought.  There were more important things than artificial boyfriends like Max.  Liz doubted the relationship would last two more weeks.

Liz stood up, resolving to forget about the news report. So many bad things happen in the news every day, she thought, that you can't let it get to you.

She entered the kitchen and immediately found herself staring in the mirror.  She hated looking at herself.  Unhappily, Liz scrutinized her body.  She grabbed a clump of nonexistent fat in her stomach and made a face.  She was positive she was gaining weight.  Looking herself over once more, she felt her self-esteem crumble beneath her.  She wondered what people thought of her.  She wondered if in the recesses of their mind they speculated about her weight and noticed she was getting bigger.

She sucked her stomach in and stared at herself from the side.  That was how thin she wanted to be.  She wanted to put the stick-thin models to shame.  She wanted people to notice her slim form and she wanted other girls to want her body.

She sighed and lay a hand on her flat stomach to ease the grumbling.  She hadn't eaten anything yet today and she wasn't about to start now.  In her mind, every time she walked through the kitchen without eating was another step towards losing weight.

As she passed through the door at the other side of the kitchen, a smile formed upon her face.  "This is it," she said to herself quietly, "I've started losing weight and as long as I keep on doing this, I'll lose more.  I have the willpower to do this.  Soon enough, I'll be incredibly thin and my life will be completely perfect."

* * *

"Liz?  Is that you?"

Liz turned around, puzzled.  She searched the crowd of people behind her in attempt to find the voice that called her name.

Suddenly, a familiar face popped up in front of her.  With the same bleached hair and dark eyes, Max hadn't changed a bit, at least not physically.

"Max?" she asked with surprise, "I haven't seen you since..."

"Yeah, I know," he said, "April."

It was December now and Liz had been shopping for a gift for her mother.  So far, she had been unsuccessful and she had been planning on leaving the mall empty-handed to come back another day. 

"You Christmas shopping?" Liz asked.

Max shrugged, "Yeah, I guess.  But I don't really feel like shopping anymore.  Would you want to get something to eat?"

Liz had nothing else to do so she agreed.  The pair left the mall and walked to a café that was close by.  Liz was surprised by the maturity that he seemed to have gained in the past couple of months.  She found herself actually having what she would consider intelligent conversation.  She figured it might be because they weren't going out and there was none of that pressure that came with dating.

As Liz took her seat at one of the small round tables in the café, Max offered to go and get food for them.  Liz told him she wasn't hungry, she just wanted water.

A few minutes later, Max returned.  "Here's your water, Liz.  Are you sure you don't want anything else?" he asked as he placed the sandwich he'd ordered for himself on the table.

"I'm not really hungry." Liz repeated and opened her water. 

There was an awkward silence as both of them searched for something to say.  Finally Liz said with a laugh, "You look exactly the same as you did nine months ago."

Max shrugged, "Well, it's only been nine months."  He looked at Liz for a moment.  "You look like you've lost a lot of weight."

Max thought Liz looked extremely unhealthy.  Her arms were like sticks, he could almost see the bones.  Her eyes were sunken in and she had dark circles beneath them.  Max thought he could almost see her ribs through the dress she was wearing. The curves that he had once admired had all but disappeared.

"Thanks." Liz said with a smile, unaware of Max's disgust.  "I'm on a diet, so I'm glad that it's working."

Max stared at the bottle of water that sat in front of her.  "How much of a diet?" He asked slowly.  "You look like you need to gain weight, not lose it."

"Stop it, Max." Liz said shaking her head, "You don't need to say that.  I mean I don't think it's a big deal, really.  If I don't lose weight, I don't lose weight." Her expression contradicted the words she said. "But at least I'm not as fat as I was when I was going out with you." She laughed slightly.

Max looked at her like she was from another planet.  "What are you talking about, Liz?  You were skinny when we dated.  My mom thought you were anorexic."  A look of realization passed of Max's face.  "I think you should eat something."
Liz just rolled her eyes, "Max, don't worry about it.  You're starting to sound like my mother."

"Liz, I'm serious, you have a problem if you think it's okay not to eat anything."

"This isn't a problem," Liz said, getting annoyed, "death is a problem. This is just me losing weight." Liz laughed remembering the news report that had been on the television months before.  "It's not like I'm committing suicide."
Max didn't laugh.  His expression remained serious as he shook his head. 

"Aren't you, Liz?  Are you aware that you could die from not eating?  The reason we have food is to eat it so we can have energy.  You shouldn't just stop eating."  He spoke these words slowly, like he was talking to a small child.

"Stop giving me a lecture, Max.  I liked you better before."  She stood up to leave.

"Wait," Max said. 

Liz turned around with a sigh, "What?"

"Liz, just think about it.  It is exactly like you're committing suicide.  You're causing your own death and removing yourself from earth and all that.  If you die, it will be your fault because you are causing it."

Liz just stared at him, shook her head and walked out of the door of the café, leaving Max staring after her.

As she walked away, she considered what Max had told her.  His words were powerful and they made sense as she remembered her exact thoughts the day she had seen the news report.  But what did Max know?  He probably just wanted her to gain weight so that he wouldn't feel bad about losing her months before.  That's it, Liz thought, I can't die from being on a diet, that's ridiculous.  Max has no idea what he's talking about. 

And Liz kept on walking.  She put on a smiling face and pushed her worries the back of her mind.  She resolved not to worry about the consequences of not eating.  All that was going to happen would be that she would lose weight.  She resolved not to worry about anorexia.  Anorexic people were thin and she was quite sure that she was not thin. So she forgot those worries and didn't think about them again, but if she had, they may have saved her life.
11th grader
Los Altos, CA, USA
About the author of Forgotten Worries.
My name is Christina and ever since I was a little girl I have wanted to be a writer.  I hope that someday my works will be published and I hope that Forgotten Worries is a good reflection of my talent and experiences.
~She Dreams~

She dreams in colors
Paintings in her head
Swirling themselves together
Finally mixing into an ugly gray.
Her thoughts are music
Every once in a while
Forming a tune,
Rolling from her lips
In a river of song,
An ocean of tears
The many she's cried.
Her thoughts are jumbled
A maze of emotion
She often gets lost in.
Her feelings are secrets
Yet to be told,
Trying to release themselves
From her lonely soul.
Her mind is a book
Often left open,
Always dreaming.
Dreaming of her future.
She dreams in colors...

9th grader
Gillette, Wyoming/ USA
I like to write, do modern hip-hop dancing, play acoustic guitar, listen to music, read, and play vollyball and soccer. I'm fourteen years old. Yeah....I guess that covers it.
Dear Death

Dear death!
Oh help me in my forlorn struggle
Too many nothing for me to juggle.
I cry and yet nobody hears,
I'm faced with all my greatest fears
And all those times I've tried to runaway
I waited for someone to tell me to stay
Dear death!
I'm dying on this forgotten train
My life and mind is full of pain.
Thrown at me, your swears and teases,
My world of glass is left in pieces.
Forget me in my desolate grief
Time for me to take my leave.
london, uk
i am sinking in my life long mess, 15 yrs worth of uselessness, i luv the chili peppers- and i am a stupid girl.
Ode To Love

Everlasting embrace
and the kiss of grace
soulful promises
pains yet to erase

An art to melt
the heart, been felt
bleeding fires
passions soon delt

Their breathe you feel
the aura unreal
heart drops to stomach
skin starts to peel

Open and exposed
soul is transposed
air rings silent
as eyes close

trembling lips
stomach rips
together as one
heartbeat skips

symphony of song
together you belong
linked to the core
hearts clutch, so strong

a cry through the wing
desires are skinned
one last glare
sadly you grin

silver moon dove
drenches passion above
beneath the luminous moon
flows the river of love
10th grader
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Well i love the gothic culture. It has inspired me in a great many ways.

i wrote this poem actually without actually any experience. Um, i guess i love writing poetry?
The Scream unheard.

Of "It" there were millions - all different yet exactly the same! All born from the same organ and delivered using those age old techniques. Some, at conception, had a slight birth defect resulting in the offspring possibly seeming hoarse, shrill even croaky. However with the mere clearing of the throat or ingestion of Halls all defects could be eliminated.

These "births" were so routine and uniform that one "it" mingled into the next which in turn also did the same. However if every "it" was as "trumpet-tongued" as the other then a death would seem like a birth. As this reverberating sound wave would be succeeded by yet another carbon copy. "It" would eventually vanish as if it had never been uttered.

I may have been uttered or even muttered into this world like every on else, yet profusely refuse to be faded out like whispery background music. One day a fade out may be necessary yet I plan to "go platinum" before adjusting the pitch. No fads or mass- production for me. I plan to be heard!  As I plan to be the designer of my own scream - to mould, perfume and evolve it as my tongue and pallet choose. Rather than being a stoical scream. In lieu of having my unconforming scream categorized one can simply brand  me "untitled". As I aim to an unidentifiable and meet none of the criteria!

Conformity makes living life easy yet dying death an unsolvable equation because then those left behind begin to wonder who the deceased really was. However the answer: a mere "scream", is by no means a palatable answer to that equation. How each one of us "screams" chooses to be enunciated - with a whisper, mutter, mumble or bellow - we should decide!

"Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth."
John F. Kennedy (1917-63),
9th grader
Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa

You're beautiful
Fated to expire
Constrained now to save you
To undo your chains
To set you free
Let you taste the sun
Once more
You're at rest
The wind will blow
Compelled to slice the masts
To make them fail
To request reprisal
Let you have life
Once more
Hush now
It will all be over soon
My dear Iphegenia
They gave you to the wind
And the war
12th grader
17 female from Canada. I sing and write songs and poetry. This poem is about Iphegenia, a young woman who in greek mythology was sacrificed to the goddess Artemis by her father so he could sail his ships and battle for his country.
He Doesn't

He doesn't wear Nike, so he isn't with the 'in',
He doesn't wear fish nets, so he isn't 'alternative',
He isn't popular, he doesn't have friends,
He is an outcast. He doesn't fit in.

He doesn't agree with what 'they' say,
He isn't liked,
He doesn't drink and smoke drugs,
He isn't as high as a kite,
He is an outcast. He doesn't fit in.

He likes hip-hop culture, he doesn't like pop,
He doesn't like sports, he doesn't like football,
He doesn't feel comfortable in large or small space,
He is an outcast. He doesn't fit in.
London, England
My name is Tony and i'm 17 years old. I've been writing for the past two years and i'm very keen to get my work published. I try writing from different perspectives and including content related to politics, society, religion, law, and myself. I've just got a new site up and running where you can find more of my work. It's available at <removed> Thanks for taking the time to read my poem and about me.
                &#65279;The Plant

                 The plant looms over me,
                 Almost like a tree.
                 Bugs swarm everywhere
                 Telling me to go away.
                 It's seeds flow through the air.
                 Before I really didn't care.
                 But now I think severely
                 Maybe I should've pulled the
                  weeds during the summer.

10th grader
I am an insane robotics scientist.  Or at least I like to think so with my constant designs for the robotic war that is going on.  But I also has a sensitive side with enjoyment in the theater.  I am also a Sophomore Vice president at Murray High School and well liked and respected by everyone.
Crying Heavens

Mist and dew, gathering in a great swamp of air,
the sun, being blocked from our eyes,
darkness cast upon the ground of dispair and grief,
pearly drops of creation, dripping from what looks down on us.

The fresh droplets revitalize our bodies, our souls,
The cool breeze whistles across our damp bodies,
our minds in full action, wanting to leap out from our shell of deceit and lies,
for once, we want to dance in the rain as we did when we were young

Powerful blobes of windows to life,
brighten our day,
as the heavens cry.
9th grader
I have been writing since I was a small child with the greatest of imaginations. I always invented stories and characters in my head, then drew them onto paper, never starting to actually reaching a point where I knew exactly how my stories would finish and when. But since I started secondary my writing has much improved and now has a beginning, middle and yes, even an end!!!

Desperation horrifies me
One wink
And a new bizarre dream
One Blink
A smile from some foreign stranger
My head spins rapidly
Questions are slipping through
Those aliens are mystifying me
And I don't want to expect reliance on them
The lights are captured by my prospect
Although not understood within me
"Save me from Paranoia"
I cry to the unknown
Darkness rises
And goes again
The nightmare is still present
There again it is
The alien, the lights
And the invisible touch
Do they just want to shield me
From the answer I have yet to uncover?
Not a single answer am I to know
Not reality
Not the existing dream
This nightmare that is not welcomed
Still enters
Ignoring my struggle to not be innocent
Because I am so vanished
I am so paranoid
The alien holds me
I doubt if I shall bind myself in them
Scared from the rest
A wink
The new world comes
It's black, terrifying, and risky
Maybe the aliens keep alarming me
Trying to penetrate me in their world
Yet my body is not capable so
It is so lost beyond the last universe
It is so left behind
It is bothered by the distant voices
Will reality ever
Have the knowledge to find the path
To where I shall be
11th grader
Oh Medina

Oh Medina
Haven't seen you in a while
Guess you've started on your journey
Without telling me goodbye

It's okay though
Everyone leaves friends behind
Leaving faded footprints on our hearts
From those we've loved in life

Aw yeah
But I don't know if you intended
To isolate yourself
From the rest of us

It's tearing me apart
As I watch you slowly searing in your pain
To no avail
I try to water down the flames

Oh Medina
Don't you try to play pretend
Acting like we're still good friends
When that part of you is dead

You'll be okay though
There rests hope beyond your lies
Looking through your bloodshot eyes
I see drops of silver light

Oh Medina
12th grader
Milford, PA USA
Kevin Bradley!
What have You Done Now
By: Elaine
" Kevin, how dare you do such a thing!" the preschool's principal yelled.
To no avail, she tried to pry the sandals off the teacher's feet. The teacher wailed louder
with each firm tug.
" Why did you have your shoes off in the first place, Mrs. Harvey?" Kevin's mother asked.
She winced with each of the teacher's cries.
" And why was there super glue in a preschool?"
" Does it really matter?" the principal said.
She set down Mrs. Harvey's foot and wiped the sweat off her brow.
" What matters is that Mrs. Harvey had her sandals super glued to the bottom off her feet by your son. Now, I think I'm just going to take her to the hospital."
The principal paused to run the fingers through her hair and then helped Mrs. Harvey to her feet.
"Oh, by the way," the principal said," don't even bother to bring Kevin back here again."
As they walked out to the car, Kevin's mother sighed and shook her head. Kevin's innocent blue eyes shone, and not a strawberry blonde hair on his head was out of place.
" I didn't mean to make her mad, Mommy," he said. " I honestly didn't."
" I'm sure you didn't," his mother said. " Just wait until your father gets home."
When they arrived home, Kevin turned on some cartoons, and his mother started
baking a cake. As soon as she had the cake in the oven, she went upstairs to pick
out an outfit for a party. After making sure she was gone, Kevin flounced into the kitchen. Carefully, he took the cake out of the oven and set it on the floor.
" Such a plain looking cake," Kevin said. " I'll have to help Mommy decorate it."
He looked in the cupboards and refrigerator, but he didn't find anything that was pretty
enough. With dismay, he wandered out into the living room, and that was when he saw it! On the coffee table sat his father's special Time magazine with Elvis on the front cover. Kevin grabbed the magazine and dashed into the kitchen. He took the scissors out of the drawer where they were supposed to be hidden. Carefully, Kevin cut Elvis' face out of the front cover and examined it.
" Beautiful," he said," I cut right around the lines."
Next, Kevin set the picture neatly into the cooled cake batter and pressed down hard. Cake batter oozed over the sides of the pan and spilled onto the floor. The batter stuck to everything including Kevin's clothes and hair.
" That's better," Kevin said.
" Kevin Bradley!" his mother shrieked from the doorway. " What have you done now?"
" I made it pretty, Mommy," Kevin said with innocent round eyes. " I was only trying to
" Honey, I'm home!" shouted Kevin's father.
" My cake!" his mother screamed. " Come here and see what he did to my cake!"
" My magazine!" Mr. Bradley said.
Mrs. Bradley picked Kevin up by the back of his shirt and carried him into the
bathroom. A bath and a fresh set of clothing made Kevin look like a perfect angel again. Those
blue eyes glowed, and not a strawberry blonde hair on his head was out of place.
" Tonight," his mother said," Mommy and Daddy are going to go to a party, so you're going to stay with Uncle John. I want you to be on your absolute best behavior. Understand?"
" Yes, Mommy," Kevin said. " I'll make you proud."
Kevin's uncle was a priest at a church nearby. It wasn't long before Kevin found
himself sitting on a couch in the rectory watching cartoons. His uncle was upstairs getting
ready for the service the next morning.
A long, slow creak came from the staircase behind him. Kevin whirled around,
but nobody was there. " It could be a spook, like Jimmy told me about yesterday," Kevin thought. He was convinced that Jimmy was telling the truth about the dead man who walked around houses, moaned, and tapped on the walls . Surely, nobody could lie about a story as serious as that, and Jimmy was older than Kevin.
Then that slow, long creak came again, and Kevin didn't dare to look.
"Creak, creak, creak!" cried the stairs.
Kevin put his head in his hands and said the only prayer he knew.
" Dear God, we thank you for this food. Dear God, we thank you for this food," he recited.
" Who's with you, Son?" a raspy voice asked.
Kevin felt something cold touch his arm, but he forced himself to look up. Before him stood a man wearing an ankle-length white robe. The man had gray eyes, silver hair, and ashy skin.
" The spook!" he screamed.
Upstairs, Kevin's uncle was practicing a sermon in the mirror, but he was interrupted by a ecstatic little boy with blonde hair.
" Kevin," the priest said," please tell me what happened. I can't help you unless I
know what's wrong."
Then the creaks came from the stairs, and Kevin buried his face in his uncle's robe.
" Sorry, " the raspy voice said. " I think that I frightened him. This new robe fits nicely."
" Kevin," his uncle laughed as he pried him off his clothes," Stop it! I know him."
" Who is with you, Kevin?" the man asked.
" I want my mommy!" screamed Kevin as he hid behind his uncle.
" He wants you to say God, Kevin!" his uncle chuckled.
"God!" yelled Kevin.
" Don't worry, Son," the man said. "You already are a God-fearing man."
" Are you God?" Kevin asked with wide eyes.
The man laughed and replied," No, Son. I'm only the bishop."
" What's that?" he asked.
" He's like my boss, Kevin," his uncle explained. " He's the head of the churches."
" Oh, he must report right to God like Uncle John. Uncle John's always talking to God ,"
Kevin thought. " He kinda looks like an angel, but maybe that's what spooks look like. I'd better be good or else he'll tell God how bad I've been. God would be so angry if he knew what I did to Mrs. Harvey! I have to be good. Bishop must be his name, but I think he's really a spook. My Sunday school teacher says that God can read your mind. I wonder if Bishop can do that too.
If he can, then he will know about Mrs. Harvey. I'll never do anything like that again. I
Then Kevin dashed out of the room .
The next school day, his mother took Kevin to a different preschool. Teachers eyed him
with trepidation, but the principal had no choice except to let him in. Kevin tried to behave
, but there was this one little girl who followed him around every where. Her name was Alex, and she had a terrible habit of putting her finger in her mouth. Otherwise, she seemed normal, and Kevin even thought she was kind of pretty with her dark hair and eyes. Her blue plaid dress with a matching hair bow made her look even prettier.
" Why do you keep following me?" he asked.
Alex just stuck her finger in her mouth and ran off. Only minutes later, she returned.
At first Kevin didn't mind Alex, but after a while, she started to get on his nerves. Alex
had a special liking for playing house and making Kevin be her husband.
" Um, Alex," Kevin asked," can we do something else? I'm tired of playing house."
" No," she said," and don't forget to take out the trash, dear."
Later that afternoon, Alex was seated beside Kevin as usual, and they were cutting out a pattern. Kevin immediately thought about cutting Alex's long hair with the scissors.   
" No," he thought," I'm a God fearing man now. If I don't watch out, that spook will come get me again."
Amazingly enough, Kevin went three weeks in his new preschool without getting kicked
out. One day, he suggested a change in the project they were working on.
" Kevin, that is such a good idea!" his teacher exclaimed " This will make it so much easier."
Kevin was content, but he had one problem: Alex.
" Don't hold your fork like that!" she henpecked. " Hold it like this."
Alex demonstrated, and Kevin refused to listen. She nagged at him even more. Finally, he did what she wanted, but when Alex wasn't looking, he went back to holding the fork the way he always did.
Kevin thought Alex was beautiful with her glowing eyes and great ideas. However, she
was too bossy, and Kevin decided to make Alex leave the preschool.
The perfect opportunity came when the preschool was making applesauce. After they had boiled the apples and mashed them through a strainer, the teachers put it on the oven, so it would stay warm. Kevin noticed that for a very brief period of time the teachers left a batch of applesauce unattended, and they never checked it before they put it in the oven.   
" Alex," he said," why don't you go color that applesauce?"
" Why should I?" Alex asked. " If they want me to color the applesauce, they'll ask me."
" But they asked me to ask you," Kevin said," I would never lie to you, Alex."
" What do you want me to color it with?" Alex asked.
She stuck her finger in her mouth.
" Take this crayon and put it in the applesauce," he said. " It'll make it turn a pretty color, but don't let anybody else see you or they'll get mad at the teachers. Then, you won't be so special because everybody will get to color the applesauce."
Alex went over to the abandoned applesauce, buried the crayon in the very bottom of the
pan, and scurried away. As planned, the teachers put the applesauce on the oven to keep it warm
for lunch.
That morning, Kevin played house with Alex without complaining. Alex was happy at the thought of pleasing the teachers and was content being Kevin's wife.
At lunchtime, all the preschoolers waited while the teachers took the applesauce out of the oven. For most of the preschoolers, homemade applesauce was the perfect treat. Their
parents certainly never had the time to make such a thing.
" Who put the crayon in the applesauce?" cried the head teacher. " Come on. One of you had to do it."
" It was Alex!" cried Kevin. " I saw her do it!"
" Alex," the teacher said," come with me."  
The preschoolers gasped and gaped as the teacher lead her out of the room.
" Such a wonderful day," he thought.
 Kevin was never again bothered with Alex, and he didn't have to change preschools any more.        
10th grader
Athens, PA USA
It was Late

When they got divorced I felt like I was dying. It was so unexpected. The whole time that my dad, my brother and I had been living in another place my mom had been saying that she wanted to get back together. When they called me and Ben down to the kitchen I thought it would be good news, like, we were going to move back in. But it wasn`t. Instead it was the news that we would be permanently moving somewhere else, and spending half our time at one house, and the other at a different one. We would be living two different lives. And for some reason, it felt as though we weren`t supposed to have a problem with that. My dad was heartbroken. He felt as though my mom was the only woman in the world for him. My mom acted like she couldn`t care less. A little less than a week after the announcement about the divorce my mom had a boyfriend. At first it never occurred to me to question this, but as I got older it became more and more clear: my mom had cheated on my dad. I never got ove!
r the feeling of pain and betrayal, I didn`t have a chance, too many other things happened.
All through the sixth grade I was frightfully aware of my body size. I stood at about 5'5 which was hard enough, being so tall at my age. Instead of taking into stride my height, I worried extensively about my weight. I felt like I couldn`t do anything to control weight loss or gain, and for some reason, cutting my shoulders helped. I felt like I wasn`t real throughout that whole year, and the only way for me to escape, and feel as though I was alive, was to inflict things on myself. When I saw my shoulders bleeding, I knew I was real. I stopped eating. I threw out my breakfast each morning, and I didn`t eat lunch at school. Truth is, I have never been overweight,  I have always been tall and healthy. When I looked into a mirror though, all I saw were these ugly, fat legs, and ugly fat arms. That`s all I saw, it was all I could see.
I was never really aware of how I looked. I knew I had blonde hair, and blue eyes, and I knew that I was now 5'8 and 125lbs, with tan skin. I knew all this, but it didn`t sound good enough to me. My mom always told me with scorn in her voice how I had no idea of the "sex appeal" I held towards boys. She seemed to think it was my fault how I looked. It was true, I had no idea how boys felt about me. I had my first boyfriend in sixth grade, I never kissed him, I never did anything like that. We broke up, like most sixth grade couples do, and I didn`t care. I never held boys high on my list. As I got older I began to care more and more how I looked, and it was hard going through changes that I didn`t understand, and didn`t have a parent who cared enough there to explain to me. Every time I walked home from the bus stop, at least one man or boy would yell to me out of a car window. At first it was nice, having the attention, but after that it got to be a hassle, I heard rude comm!
ents about my looks, and people seemed to think that I wanted to hear their opinions. When guys passed me on the street they would make remarks about my chest, or about how "good" I looked, as though I enjoyed being put on display in that way. My friends were mean to me about it, they acted as if I tried to get the attention, when inside, all I wanted was for it to go away. It didn`t though, it just got worse and worse as I got older. By the time I was a freshman in high school I heard it all the time. I never really tried anything big, I didn`t drink a lot, I didn`t do drugs a lot, I didn`t smoke cigarettes a lot. I had done my share of trying things out, but I never got heavily into something. For some reason though, without all the things that impact decisions like drugs and alcohol, I still had a hard time. I had always been afraid of walking home alone even though I lived in a pretty good neighborhood. If it was dark out, I felt especially scared, because that was when al!
l the guys went out to party. One night I had to walk home alone, my parents weren`t home and I wasn`t allowed to stay at my friends house. It wasn`t an especially long walk, it was actually a pretty short one, but on the way to my house from my friends, I had to go on a road which I particularly didn`t like. It was a road on which I always got people yelling at me, and pulling over and telling me to get into their cars. I had no idea that the night I had to walk home alone would be one of the worst in my entire life.
I was walking along the street, when I heard someone honking a horn at me. I turned around, because it was late, and I wasn`t used to hearing the loud noises that late at night. When I turned I saw a car full of teenage boys who seemed like they were drunk. I know that they didn`t go to my school or any neighbor schools, because I would have recognized them. They started yelling at me, and laughing, and I basically laughed along and kept walking, assuming that they wouldn`t stick around longer than anyone else would. I was only fourteen, so my common sense probably wasn`t as good as someone who is older. I probably should have turned and walked the other way, but I didn`t. I didn`t do anything to stop them. I had never been strong, my brother could always beat me up without a problem, and it was the same with these boys. When they asked me if I needed a ride I said no, and instead of just driving off, two of them got out and pulled me into their car. It`s obvious what happened!
 next. No matter how many times I said no or tried to fight, I couldn`t stop them. There were four or five of them, and they looked exactly like the type of boys I would go for. They were cute, they weren`t old, but they also raped me. I hate talking about it, because it makes me feel disgusting. I hate the word, and I hate how it makes me feel responsible for what happened. Deep down I know that what happened wasn`t my fault, but any other person, boy or girl who has been through this situation, know how it feels. No matter who tells you it isn`t your fault, there is this feeling that tells you it is. Since then, I have been looking inside myself to find a part of me that knows what happened was wrong, but I haven`t found it quite yet.
9th grader
Philadelphia, PA
About the author of "It was Late"
I am a fourteen year old girl from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Thanks for reading my writing, and if the question on your mind is whether or not my piece is true, the answer is yes.

It's always the moment after the crash
when you see with startling clarity
where you went wrong

When you hear you fathers scream
from the backseat
you realize,
you should have swerved

By then, of course, it's too late
You hear the crash
for a split second,
you plunge into blessed blackness
away from the guilt that plagues you already

then, you wake up
of course you're not dead
you could not get that lucky
you still have to face what you did

moans are coming from the backseat
you want to cover your ears
get away from this reminder of your stupidity
pain in your arm keeps you still

your brother, instead of leaving you there to die
like you deserve, drags you out
the pain in your arm intensifies
still not blocking out the pain in your heart

as you see your father on the ground
wallowing in pain
you are paralyzed by what you did
you can't even go to his aid

the acrid smell of smoke fills the air
the sound of your own breathing reaches you

approaching sirens battle with the wailing in your head
you become hysterical
you can feel all the eyes on you, blaming you
throwing darts at your already battered body

the crowd becomes a blur of ghoulish faces
a mass of confusion
the world seems to spin
throwing you into a mental sucking hole

paramedics rush to help you
but you wave them away
you welcome the pain in your arm
as a punishment not closely appropriate to the crime

the ambulance leaves, whisking your father away
you know already
things will never be the same
but, it's like I said
It's always the moment after the crash
12th grader
About the author of Halloween
I was in a car accident last year. These are my thoughts
Perfect Imperfection

One of the biggest causes for stress in teen's lives is the struggle to be better, or the loose-loose battle to be perfect. Weather we're unhappy with our hair, our grades, our social status, our athletic ability, our wardrobe, our group of friends, our weight, our sexuality, we're constantly trying to improve or change to be better for everyone else. When you think about it though, the need to be perfect and the desire for inner happiness are always in conflict. It seems as though teenagers are often 'dissatisfied' with themselves. Although we made the team, we focus on the fact that we aren't star players. Although we made an A, we focus on why we missed the extra credit. By focusing on the downfalls, the failures or what's missing, we're losing track of the achievement and in turn making ourselves feel even 'less perfect' all the time. Now this is not implying that you should settle for any less than your best, or stop being competitive or stop reaching for your goals!
, not at all. It's only saying we need to stop focusing on what's going wrong or how we messed up and focus on the positives. The mistakes we make during our lives are only small patches of the road we're walking on to our future. Although we don't like making these mistakes and do all we can to avoid them, we learn and grow and mature from them. When we learn to stop looking for the perfection, we can clearly see that everything and everyone around us are exactly how they are supposed to be, even though it may not look like it from the surface. We all need to experience "Perfect Imperfection"
10th grader
Windermere, Fl
About the author of Perfect Imperfection:

I'm a sophomore at Olympia High, I'm part of the newspaper team and also take journalism class. I've been writing since I was 7 and I'm constantly writing.
Happiness to a Man

There was
a man
a man of great importance
He knew how add and do
He knew his geography and
his sociology
he knew all his literature-
Shakespeare indeed.
His friends all admired him-
his wife adored him
his children respected him:
he knew a lot

but yet he was
unhappy as can be
for he lived his life with
Then one
he said
"I've had enough
of all this moral

The man left town-
he took a satchel
slung upon his shoulder
He didn't look back-
He didn't want to
He had been thought successful-
and yet
he felt it not

For who lives life
in a bubble
day-to-dayness- and:

This man he went
to find shelter
he found a clearing
with a tree
and by this tree
he found a cave
(he did)
and crawled inside
to think for

he was wearing his best suit
because he wasn't ready
to give up his facade
of respectability

He knew inside
(inside his soul, right there)
that he was wasting
precious time
He knew much of
worldly matters and yet
he knew nothing of
how to live his life

The days went by
and months and years of sorrow came to
all his friends and
his family
Though the man was aching
to see his wife again and
play with his children
he knew that his time was-
not yet over
There was something else that
he had to see
and then one day
it came right over
into his cave in the clearing
by the tree
A great brown creature
grumbled softly
it was ready
to have a sleep
It lumbered over
and snuggled up to him
the bear slept on
natural as can be
the man was stunned
this was impossible
the bear should have killed him

He slept all the winter
(in the forest, there)
beside him, his comfort
the big brown bear
he and the bear
they were friends and they were
living life
so peacefully

the bear had cubs and then
there was too little space for him and
he knew that
the time had come
He knew what to do
knew how to do it
he picked up his satchel and-
headed for home.

His wife was rocking in her chair
on the porch
She was
than he remembered her
he looked once back
to his friend and what
had been his home for
so many years
now how could a man of such
great importance
change his life
just because of a bear?

He says it's a secret and-
if you're lucky
you'll find out
live in happiness

His wife looked up and-
smiled warmly
she knew that he had
come back to stay
She said
"The children are grown
they've married and
far away
but I knew you'd come back,
come back someday"

And now they
sit on the porch on a warm
summer evening
and sometimes this great man
hear his bear
The wife know it's useless to break
the tie
of two creatures, two friends, who found meaning in life.

The man is no president
or even V.P.
of a multi-million dollar
But though he's not rich,
and though not so famous
this man is happy
as happy can be.

10th grader
About the author of Happiness to a Man:
I love to write and would like to continue to do so in the future. Please drive carefully and carry your life out as best you know how.
Realistic Love

Hands linked
Knees tremble
Toes curled
Eyes locked
Can she trust this man-this boy?
Will she negotiate her future, her plans, her goals- for love?
No. She has worked too hard to get here.
But would he change his objective? Would he attempt to rearrange his destiny to be with her?
Never. Love will always come second.
So are they both just pretending? Do they just not care enough to compromise?
No. They are just two different people, in two different situations, who need to get where they need to be - without each other.
Will she be able to let him go without a regret in mind, and no trace of tears in her eye?
Oh no, she could never do that. She will scream and cry and make herself sick in solitude, never letting him see a single tear. Never revealing that she is not as strong as he thought.
Then she will kiss him goodbye, muffling out the sound of her heart breaking with a fake giggle.
And they will both unlock their eyes, uncurl their toes, relax their knees, and release their hands, and mechanically go on with their lives,
Always wondering when they will meet again. Always knowing that they never will.
Both dreaming of a fairytale ending that could never exist.
11th grader
Berkley, MI

I walk down a boardwalk, its wood rotting with salt from the salty sea air.
I hear the soft padding of feet, as I walk where I dare.
The ocean waves crash, leaving mists, dampening my hair, making it cling to my forehead, knotted, wet with my tears.
The sun sets below the horizon.
Vivid oranges and reds take its place.
I reach the sand scattered with seashells,
tossed by Mother Nature's hands.
I walk upon land, seemingly untouched by man.
The waves wash my footprints away, leaving no trail to tell from which direction I came.
Everyone needs an escape, all of their own,
to go to when things are too hectic at home.
For when the world is confused, and you're misunderstood.
For when you do not know who your true friend really is.
You need your escape for when you can find nothing good.
You need your escape for when you need something good.
Your escape is for you, no one more, no one less.
Your escape is for escaping, nothing more, nothing less.
9th grader
Toowoomba Queensland Australia
The Lost Family
                                                                               December, 1939                                                                                        Brzezyiny, Poland

Dear Journal,
I sit here peering into the still ebony darkness that invades my eyesight. My mind is feverously rushing, replaying recent occurrences over and over again. I shudder as the cold wraps its stinging tendrils around my frail figure. Instinctively, I pull the fluffy covers tighter in a frantic attempt to conjure up any sense of warmness and security from its fluffy interior.
I watch the glistening raindrops glide down the slick windowpane, delicately casting swirled figures on the tinted glass. The furry of the wind, mercilessly masticating silence, rips tender branches from their leafy foundations. Its howling ballad echoes through the stone walls of this chaotic abode.
This wind, transforming the landscape into a precarious territory, has summoned my consciousness from a deep sleep. As I sit here, my mind wanders into its deepest fears. Ever since Germany invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, only one topic floats through these walls; only one vision frequently invades the mind of its inhabitants. My parents attempt to shield me and my siblings from the truth. They feel that the bloody details are not appropriate nor necessary to disclose to those so innocent and naive. However, their wholehearted attempts are in vain for I am not immune to the hatred that crouches at our door and scratches relentlessly at our windows. Although I am merely the tender age of eleven, I am not blind and deaf.
The reality of it all now comes plummeting down like an anvil. Yesterday, one sign was painstakingly removed and another was tacked up. This sign renames our street after Haursweisel, a famous German anti-Semitic writer. Now Jews are no longer allowed to reside on this street in order to avoid disgracing Haursweisel. Tomorrow is moving day. We are planning to seek refuge in Skierniewice.   
*     *     *   

April, 1941
Skierniewice, Poland 
Dear Journal,  
So here we are, starting our life all over again. This is truly a formidable task. I feel that it will never be accomplished because so much has been reluctantly left behind. When one temporarily pauses from the string of events that encompasses a day and takes stock, this loss is overwhelming. 
I feel like a criminal, yet I have not committed a single crime. I have been cast away by the very people who were once my neighbors and friends. My emotions run wild and I am unable to even start to define or express my thoughts and feelings. At first, I am angry at their ignorance and betrayal. Then, I am disappointed by the entire situation. Finally, I am disappointed that I am disappointed. Why am I not now angry?  In short, I am fundamentally confused about the entire ordeal.
           *     *     *
May, 1941
Road to Brzeziny, Poland
Dear Journal,
Deja Vu. It must be a vision from the past. Skierniewice was ordered to be freed of all Jews. Seeing no better alternative, my father has decided to return to Brzeziny. My mother wanted to flee to the Ukraine but my father was adamant in his decision. It will be his way or no way. This topic has been a great source of arguments. I cannot bear to uproot my life once more whether it be to the Ukraine, Brzeziny, or anyplace else.
To make matters worse, our financial assets are dwindling. Food is scarce and meals are far in-between.  I wander through countless days of hunger. It is the kind of hunger that seems to burn a hole in one's stomach. My brothers and sisters cry for food, I just yearn for it silently. I feel weakened and lost. It is as if others rush through the day and I simply float beneath them in a starving delirium. When will I wake up from this nightmare?
*     *     *

March 25, 1942
Brzeziny, Poland
Dear Journal,
MY BROTHER HAS DIED TODAY! My mind realizes that Moshe David is gone but my heart blatantly denies it. This ordeal has left me paralyzed. I attempt to scream, but only silence floods from my open mouth. He was so young; only allowed to experience a mere nine years of precious life. He showed so much promise and had his entire life ahead of him. We believe, with a fairly large amount of certainty, that the cause of his death was starvation.  
I cannot cope with this loss. It eats me up inside and paralyzes my soul. Not a minute goes by that I do not think of him. Not a minute goes by that I do not miss him terribly. I wonder why this has happened. Why are we being punished? Have I committed moral turpitude? I ask God every night for forgiveness. My prayers go unanswered and I am beginning to lose my faith in Him. Maybe He is nothing more than a fairytale or maybe I am praying to the wrong God. . Philosophy aside, all that I can determine is that things are becoming progressively worse.
*     *     *

May 19, 1942
        Brzeziny, Poland
Dear Journal,
Yesterday, my dear mother and four year old brother Issac Abraham were taken away to a place called concentration camp. I do not know where or what that is but I fear for their safety. I fear that I will never see my mother's smile and never hear my brother's high pitched laugh. Lately, concentration camp has been a destination for many Jews in the surrounding vicinity. One day, a group of Nazi Storm Troopers approach your door, order you to gather a few specific items, and change your life forever. These people never return. No letters are received, no contacts are made and it is as if a community has fallen into oblivion. As each day progresses, our community becomes a mere shadow of its former self. All that is left are broken homes, broken hearts and broken families.
I do not understand why this has happened. Why is our family being punished? Why is our entire community being shattered? We are simply trying to be good, honest members of  a society that refuses to accept and honor the diversity of humanity. We are punished for who we are. Our very soul and core beliefs somehow violate the laws of this nation. Being Jewish is no more a crime than living or breathing. 
*     *     *
May 25, 1942
Brzeziny Poland
Dear Journal,
My father has been taken away to work as a slave in a coal mine. His last words to my sister and I were, "stay together". I pray that one day we will be reunited along with my mother and brother.
*     *     *
May, 1942
Lodz Ghetto, Poland
Dear Journal,
I am so tired and my hands ache from the continuous sewing. Here in the Ghetto everyone works and no one prospers. My sister Ita and I work a half a day sewing in the stuffy factory that is situated in the center of the ghetto. We are fortunate to be living together in a one room apartment with my cousin Rosie. Rosie is a stout girl with an air or unmatched vitality. She never stops laughing and becomes ecstatic about the most insignificant and entirely unentertaining happenings. She, only slightly older than Ita, takes on an almost parental role towards me. She conjures up light from total darkness and creates an atmosphere that  always exceeds the grim expectations of reality. 
Ita, angular and pessimistic,  is the polar opposite of  Rosie. Ita rarely utters a word. Instead, she relies on an intricate language of hand gestures and facial expression. I feel tension rising between the two constantly. However, they strive to contain their feelings in order to dodge unnecessary turmoil. Although life is difficult, I must maintain a hopeful outlook in order to avoid certain insanity.
*     *     *
September, 1944
Oswiecim(Auschwitz), Poland
Dear Journal,
For two years I have wondered what concentration camp was, now I know. This is truly hell on Earth. Every night, I pray to God for an end to this madness; a termination of this evil we call war. I now think that either He is not  listening or the transmission has gone bad.
This nightmare began a month ago when my sister Ita was arrested and ordered to go to this place. I ,remembering my father's advice to "always stick together", decided to go with Ita. I figured that at the rate that the Ghetto was being cleared out, I would soon be forced to leave anyway. At least, now, I am able to temporarily preserve the remnants of my family.
The killing here is tremendous and the stench of death is a continuous reminder of the magnitude of these crimes. My nose has gradually become accustomed to the smell of burning bodies that engulfs this camp. We are tortured for no apparent reason. Yesterday, my sister and innocent others were put in a room chin-high with water where they stood for hours. Here we have nothing, not even the simplest necessities of life. I vow that if I survive this torture, I will never take a warm bed or good food for granted.
*     *     *
November, 1944
On The Road To Bergen Belsen
Dear Journal,
I don't know what lies beyond these curved roads; what monsters lurk in the future. We were told that our group was selected to go to Bergen Belsen. No further information was volunteered. The fear of the unknown seeps into the minds of all the prisoners. We, much like animals, were herded into a string of dilapidated cattle cars. The smell of death surrounds us as the sick, dying and dead are haphazardly thrown in the crowded corner like a discarded pile of children's toys. Those still standing, are forced to endure days on end without food or water. As I stand here, I wish I were dead. Painless death is a better alternative than a life full of emotional and physical pain. The glimmer of hope has faded.
*     *     *

November, 1944
Salzweidel, Poland
Dear Journal,
Our life here is slightly better than in Bergen Belsen. Anything beats sleeping in an open field in the middle of November. After our group were chosen to work at Saltzwiedel, I was doubtful that life would get any better. Working in a factory is difficult, requiring long tedious days. However, we have found friends.
Many Jews here are pleasant and attempt to make the best of a bad situation. One kind soul, much older than I, has become almost like my mentor. Her name is Blema Cohen and she is a fit fifty year old with an aptitude for poetry and an innate love of children. Several months ago, she was brought here and was forced to leave her children behind in the Ghetto. The minute she saw me, she approached me and tenderly pulled out a folded picture from her pocket of a girl about my age. She commented on the remarkable similarities of our features and our uncanny duplicate expressions. From that moment on, we were fast friends.
The only problem, however, is the continuous tension between her and Ita. As each day progresses, Ita becomes increasingly bitter and argumentative. Ever incident is exaggerated and she is habitually silent. She is suspicious of everyone. May it be a Jew or a gentile, they are out to get her. Ita is deeply leery of Blema. According to her, "Blema is just too friendly. She is fake and will sooner or later take advantage of my naivety."     
*     *     *

May, 1945
Saltzwiedel, Poland
Dear Journal,

WE ARE FREE! The feeling is ineffable. I want to scream, to cry, to leap, to jump, but my body is in a state of jubilant shock. The Americans have prevailed over Germany here and have liberated this camp. It is truly bedlam as the freed prisoners mob the streets and rob any shops that lie in their paths. I grabbed five coats and Ita took a gallon of sour cream
My dearest journal, In the spirit of my exuberance and in the light of my newfound future I regretfully must betray you. You are the story of hate and the concrete memory of the inhumanity of humanity. I need to move on. I must eliminate this hate in order to move forward with my life. Thus, our friendship must end here.
*     *     *   

Author's Note:
This story is based on my grandmother's experience as a young Jewish girl during World War II. After four years in Germany, she immigrated to the United States.

10th grader

I am 15 years old and a sophomore at California State University L.A.
Yellow Roses
By Carole 

Yellow roses were her favorite, I thought as I placed the bouquet of lemon-yellow flowers on her casket. I could still remember the night she died. I could remember every detail; right down to the smell of the perfume she was wearing. It smelled of wild raspberries just now ripening. I knew the smell extremely well because I had given her the perfume for her eighteenth birthday, only days before the accident. She had opened my gift first. The silver bag glimmered under the bright restaurant light. She had this huge smile on her face as she smelled the perfume and sprayed it upon herself.
"It's my favorite scent! Thank you Kelli! You're the best!" Ashley sang out.
A few nights later, we decided to go to a dance club to celebrate her new independence and responsibility. We both promised our parents we would be home by one. The next thing we knew, we were at the hottest new dance club in town. As soon as we stepped into the club wearing our matching tank tops, capris, and flip-flops, we hit the dance floor. We grooved to the awful techno music not even noticing everyone else in the club.
After what seemed like only a few minutes, we checked the clock and noticed it was almost midnight. Since both of us had to work the next day, and were exhausted from all that dancing, we decided to head home early. Opening the door and stepping into the parking lot, we could still feel the vibration of the dance music. With smiles on our faces, we climbed into my black Honda Accord, expecting to be at home by 12:30.
Our expectations were wrong.
I started the car and heard the soft rumble of the engine. Ashley turned the radio on and we heard our favorite song playing.
"Every move I make. Every breath I take." we belted out as loud as we possibly could, occasionally fumbling over the words.
We were almost home when we came to a four-way stop. I stopped and looked all ways. I started forward while Ashley took her seat belt off to untwist it. As soon as she was finished, I saw a pair of bright headlights coming straight for us. At the time, I didn't worry much; there was a stop sign there, right? Ashley was about to connect the two parts of her seat belt when I realized the other car was not going to stop. I swerved to my left just as the other car hit us. I screamed as my Honda was thrown up into the air and as we rotated one and a half times, leaving us upside down.
 Once the movement of the car stopped, I went to Ashley's aid, after all, the other car did hit her side of the car almost dead on. I turned to my left and saw she wasn't there at the same time I felt a sudden change of weight on my lap. I looked down to find Ashley lying on my lap with bright sanguine blood pulsing from her head.  Not even trying to stop the blood, I shook Ashley with all my might just so I could get some sort of response from her lifeless body.  When there was none, I began to sob deep breathless sobs. "She was only eighteen! She didn't deserve this! What could she have possibly done that would make God angry enough to do this?" I screamed at the sky.
About fifteen minutes later another car stopped to see what was happening. Luckily, they were able to contact the police. A policeman came to arrest the drunk driver and two ambulances came for Ashley and me. Ashley was still breathing when she arrived at the hospital, but died only minutes later, before her parents had even heard about the accident.
"Kelli, honey, please, come sit down", my mom said, I didn't realize how long I had been standing at the casket, staring at the picture of Ashley placed on top. Several bouquets of bright yellow roses surrounded the picture.
"Good-bye Ashley", I whispered then walked back to my seat in the pews.

9th grader
Bakersfield, Ca USA
Hey! What's up? All I gotta say is don't drink and drive!

All I know is
Nothing - me
As myself
You as your God.

Minds travel
Soulless - it's in
The heart we
8th grader
Sydney, NSW, Australia

My mind spins out of control
My hearts fastens it's pace
The pain surges through
It feels like poison
It hurts and I don't know
How to make it stop

My minds tells me I'm in pain
How can I not believe it?
My body is going crazy
And I ask myself why?

My heart is speeding its pace
Going faster and faster
I want it to stop, I cant make it stop

I am loosing control
My body doesn't do what I want anymore!
I feel weak
My mind is leaving

I feel myself easily loosing control
I fight for one more second
It's no use I have total darkness
The pain has gotten the best of me
I can do no more
8th grader
L.A., CA
About the author of I CAN DO NO MORE
I wrote this poem when i felt so sad that and had a lot of emotional stress that I felt alt of pain, and that I could blackout any minute.

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