My Dream Dog

He has dots on his face
and on his body
and he is cute as a heart

We play tug of war
and we go for walks
and I give him treats

I feed him dinner
and he follows me to bed
right beside me

Emile Johnson is a first-grade student at Belmont Hills Elementary in Bala Cynwyd, PA. She lives in Narberth, PA with her parents and big brother. She likes to read and write poems and stories and also likes to draw. She dreams of having a dogsomeday soon.

Ocean Trip

I see golf courses
The ferris wheel at the top of the night sky
I can see bubbles rising into space
I can see people hloding bags that are filled uo
I can see crowded stores
I touch the tickets
I can touch golf clubs
I can feel the cold metal of the rides
I can taste the cotton candy melting in my mouth
The water ice makes me shiver
When I bite into a fry, I watch the steam go up
At night on the boardwalk, I hear the waves
I hear music inside the stores
I can hear the screams of people on roller coasters

Michael is in third grade. He has two cats and loves video games. He collects pencils and toy cars. He is nine years old.

I Do Not Cry

This is how I don’t cry.

When I’m going to cry dark clouds roll in and thunder

To stop crying I cross my heart and I settle down.

The clouds roll back, sun comes in and I start to think
about summer.

James is in kindergarten and likes to draw and write poetry. He also likes to play soccer and enjoys hip hop dance. He lives in Havertown, PA with his parents and older brother. His favorite book series is the Elephant and Piggie series by Mo Willems.


Cute and cuddly
Oh, he is so fluffy
So soft and loves to play
Meow! Is what he says
Oh, how could I ever forget he is the best cat ever!

Grace Donia lives in Medford Lakes, NJ. She loves to draw, and she loves cats. They rock. She is 9 and likes to cheer, dance, and do gymnastics.

My Cat

I am
Black Gray and
I am indoor cat
I meow and purr
I like treats and cat food
I am fat
I like to watch squirrels
When I look at a squirrel
I am Riley the cat

Matthew McHugh is from Medford Lakes, NJ, and he likes playing soccer. His school is Neeta School and he is 8 years old.


Sense of one is a part of more
Feeling of interests in others’ worth
Walking on the same path, whether exciting or bore
Keeping all the secrets of our mind we swore.
Monotonous people, even them we hold close,
Being a part of something bigger is what we love most.
In this group we all feel like the host
So, to the sense of togetherness, I toast.

Davis O'Leary is 13 and a seventh grader at TE Middle School. He lives with his parents and big brother. His varied interests include spending time with friends and family, reading, writing, studying the Bible, football, wrestling and lacrosse. Davis is one of the winners of the first “Teens Take the Park” writing contest.

Brave Soul, ii

In this lugubrious land
where coltan and fighting decide to rhyme
where the Congolese and its splintering neighbors forget
what they're really fighting about,
it's easy to not hear Parfaite's dive into a lake of dreams
and dismiss the battles fought on her brave brown body
like she was the war.

What happened to simple desires unattached to the manufactured desires of outsiders
like fu-fu pounded fresh, obnoxiously yellow
mated with deep fried Nile tilapia
that Parfaite had pulled a thousand times from Lake Kivu

Sojourner Ahebee , 16, is a 10th grade student at Interlochen Arts Academy. Originally from Cote d’Ivoire, Sojourner now resides in West Philadelphia when not away at school. Her poetry has been published in Stone Soup, Teen Ink , Apiary Magazine and Red Wheelbarrow. Sojourner’s poem Listen to Africa was recently published as a poster for sale by the Syracuse Cultural Workers. http://syracuseculturalworkers.com/poster-listen-africa Sojourner has maintained a culture blog for teens for the past four years. It’s called Sojo’s Trumpet: http://trumpetworld.blogspot.com/


I am a cowering cat
I am a man paying taxes
I am the iPad clicking
I am the lone goose
Flying home

Victor Ginsberg is a twelve-year old writer. He studies creative writing at the “Teen Lit Magazine” workshop at the Musehouse Literary Arts Center in Germantown (www.musehousecenter.com).

Where I’m Really From

I am from Albania, where large land lies between houses.
I am from the warm country of beauty and peace.
I am from a place with big mountains and lakes, a place where kids explore and hunt.
I am from my family and friends and love.
I am from the country that loves soccer, camping, and home cooked meals.
I am from a place where kids run home to the amazing smell of homemade bread that
reaches the mountains.
I am from a place of dance, laughter, peace, family, and warm welcomes.
I am from a place I call home.

Anxhela Zere is in 9th grade at Adaire HS in the fall. Anxhela wrote this poem at the PSJr writing workshop at the Tacony branch of the Free Library.


Smith’s Watches and Fine Jewelry sat deserted on Cherry St.
Its owner now living in the slums-
For the Depression was on - And with their money gone,
Folks had no interest in fancy time-keepers or brooches.
And though they could sell them to the government instead-
(That was part of Roosevelt’s “New Deal”)
They still sold at a loss.
Which forced Smith’s to close its doors, for lack of money, much needed.
Its owner, now broke, and with a large family to feed,
Decided to kill two birds with one stone-
And go to the Unemployed Benefits Office and the soup kitchen-

Pearl Ramke is a 12-year-old homeschooler. She lives in Jenkintown, PA, with her mom, dad and bunny, Pfeff. She likes to dance ballet
and play percussion in addition to being interested in science and writing. She also has her own business selling potholders on the
website Etsy. Pearl studies creative writing at the “Teen Lit Magazine” workshop at the Musehouse Literary Arts Center in Germantown (www.musehousecenter.com).

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