I Am From

I am from food that tastes like heaven. From
family that is far away. I am from quiet streets.
From Prince Pizza. I am from English turned
Spanish. I am from constant fighting. From fear of
my family breaking up. I am from fake friends &
no ends. I am from two sisters I can count on
in life. I am from a father I barely knew.
From a mother who drank her life away, but doesn’t
anymore. I am from two years of my life, sleeping
with a mask so I won’t slip into an eternal

Kayla Rodriguez is 14 and in the 8th grade at Feltonville Arts and Sciences in North Philly. Her favorite subject is Science, and she likes to sleep in her free time. 


Are supposed to be of warmth,
Of comfort,
Of trust.

Like houses made for the heart of loved ones,
Whether hard and calloused,
Or soft and gentle,
They hold on for that sweet embrace.

Hands are supposed to be of safety,
Of faith,
Of hope.

Kristen Bui is a senior at Franklin Towne Charter School. Her dream is to one day become a professional writer, specifically for DC Comics. Reading and writing are her favorite hobbies, however, nothing touches her heart like a big, hot bowl of ramen noodles.


New-sprung life
Scented carpets
Of paint-splashed

Sunlit showers
Blush to cheek
Of maiden

Crimson leaves
Mid streams of
Gold all

Stars above
Down on blankets
Of powder

Naomi Mengel is a senior at Tall Oaks Classical School. In addition to writing, she enjoys photography, running, reading, and playing the piano. She lives in Newark, DE, with her parents, younger sister, and Golden Retriever.



Caterpillar eats
So delicious is the leaf
Bite, chew. Munch, crunch. Lunch!


Sunflower gazing
Yellow face up, standing strong
Grinning at the sun.


Leopard laps water
Reflection ripples away
Nature’s wet mirror

Caroline is a 10-year-old student at Tatem Elementary School in Collingswood, NJ.  When Caroline gets older, she hopes to be a scientist or a veterinarian. Her advice for writers and artists young and old:  Mistakes are not always the end. They are the bloom of new ideas.


two pieces fit together
more matches make it better
to complete the puzzle
you have to search for answers

Mairead is a second grader at Rehoboth Elementary School in Delaware. She loves to play lacrosse and basketball, and her dog, Violet.

A Little Temporary Peace

After the sun has made its rounds
and is slowly drifting to sleep
After the birds and squirrels have joined
the trees that wish and weep 

The thoughts all slip away
into the world that lies ahead
Only colors in the distance
The sadness has finally fled

There is nothing to think about
Only things to see and hear
about the world it used to be
when it was without fear 

Mira Tensuan-Eli is a sixth grader at Haverford Middle School in Havertown, PA. She enjoys reading, writing poems and short stories, and staring off into space. She prefers quietness or soft music, but can deal with any atmosphere as long as she has an interesting book.

My Dog

You’re a weird one,
Whisky dog.
You really are strange.
You bark when no one’s out there,
You’re afraid of your own poop,
Whisky doooooog!
The three best words to describe you
Are strange, cute and loving!

Alexandra Murray is eight years old and in the second grade. She likes to read, write, and draw. She enjoys reading the Warriors series and playing Minecraft with her sister, Scarlett. Her jingle is a spoof on the song, Mr. Grinch, and is paired with her drawing of her family’s dog, Whisky. Alexandra produced these pieces at the Free Library of Philadelphia’s 2017 Comic Con event.

Tame the Beast

Tame the beast
He’s evil
He’s destruction
Tame the beast
Get him while you can
Or you’ll be the one at fault
Tame the beast
My brother is released!

Molly is 10 years old and attends Williamstown Middle School. In her spare time, Molly enjoys playing softball and Minecraft.

What Black History Means to Us

So I know what you think --
Three 8-year-olds don't know black history.
But we know how to write a poem in three minutes.

As we looked up Black History, we found interesting people,
Like Maya Angelou.
Maya was a poet and she fought for civil rights.
Ruby Bridges was brave enough to step foot in an all-white school.

Kindal Way is a third grade student at Myers Elementary School in Elkins Park, PA. She loves to do gymnastics, sing, write and dance. She also loves to help out in the kitchen with her aunt. Emma Zubairu is a third grade student at Myers Elementary School in Elkins Park, PA. She loves to play the piano and bake with her mom. She also loves to do gymnastics with her friend, Madison. Madison Alexander is a third grade student at Myers Elementary School in Elkins Park, PA. She loves to do gymnastics with Emma and play with her little sister. She also loves to bake with her mom and dad and play video games with her brother.  

Major League

It was not until 1947
that African Americans were allowed to play Major League Baseball.
Jackie Robinson was the first to get the call.
The Dodgers’ manager called him and said
if you want to play for us, you need to ignore what everybody else says.
So Jackie said yes, but it was hard to ignore what they yelled.
So my message, is we can all break barriers,
if we work together.
Just like Jackie!
Stand up.
Speak out.
Together, we are stronger.

Henry Wasserman is a third grade student at Myers Elementary School in Elkins Park, PA.  He loves to play baseball and football -- any sport in general -- and he loves to read. He also loves math, social studies, writing and research.

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