I am in awe of these young writers as they grow into their lives. Look at these poems! They are deceptively simple, full of surprises, soft as wishes, hard as darkness — as the ache of losing, as the fear and wonder of loving what is transient.
Is there anywhere a more poignant paradox than this: to love the parts of ourselves and others and the world around us that we know cannot possibly last? To know on a gut level that it’s worth it, anyway? That’s what these poems show us. The autumn generations are leaving the earth behind them in very capable hands. I am vastly relieved by this, and I am so deeply grateful.
I thank everyone involved for writing, listening, reading and putting these ideas into printable form. Thank you, Sarah Linn, Tribune entertainment editor, and thanks to The Tribune itself for celebrating National Poetry Month. Thanks to newspapers and editors, reporters and readers for helping to keep our mosaic of a world together. And thanks for helping us see all sides of it at once. Bravo!
— Marguerite Costigan, San Luis Obispo County poet laureate
Mindy Cuccia, 12, Grover Beach
Pink is like pink frosting on a cupcake,but as rosy as your cheeks.Pink is the best colorYou could wish for.Pink is like a rose floating through a river,But most of allPink is the happiest color.
MY TRIP TO RENO
Antonio Ramirez, 14, Oceano
Smashed in the car like a potato with the familyLooking at the snow-covered mountains 8 hours on the roadAnd we finally saw the city light.Our first stop was at McDonald’sThen off to Circus CircusA whole day of playing gamesNext we went to visit family.When we got thereShe already had dinner ready for usIt was about 8 p.m.When we got there.After we all ateMy cousins and I went out and played in the snow.I was very tired and cold.I fell asleep around 10 p.m.And we left in the morning at 4 a.m.Being in Reno made me feel like the boss
Juan Lopez Perez, 13, Oceano
My dog is always sleepy like a slothHe only gets up to eat, drink water,And go outside to go pottyHis fur is short and like aShiny bronzed metalHe likes to eat white puddingHe is skinny like a branchHe is small as a toy truck
Fatima Merino, 14, Grover Beach
Marisol is like the sunshineHer smile is like a thousandDiamonds in the skyShe is beautiful like the moon at nightHer laughter is full withJoy and happinessShe is as sweet as honeyMarisol is as kind as CinderellaShe is cute like a newborn babyMarisol is as hyper as a little kindergartener
FROM ANGER TO PEACE
Anthony Diaz, 13, Grover Beach
Walking down to the busGetting kicked offFilled me with rageI am as angry as a bearWho’s protecting its cubThe only way for meTo calm down Is to listen to musicMusic makes me feel as peacefulAs a sleeping puppy
Jesse Aguilera, 14, Oceano
Old people swagThat’s my TiaShe’s as small as a puppyEyes shine like diamondsVoice as perfect as an angelThat’s my TiaLoving like a momHappy as a penguin on the beach that’s my Tia.
WHAT GAMES ARE TO ME
Kaelen Ellis, 13, Oceano
My games help me with my frustrationMy family frustrates me with allof the yelling all the timethey screech like hyenasit makes me feel angryas a mama bear separated from her cubsto help me with that angerI play video games on my PlayStation 3The music from my micDrowns out all the yellingWhile I playWhen I’m on my gameI am so happy I can avoid all the bad things happeningAnd talk and play with my friendsMeeting people around the worldDistracts me from the problems
Elio Garcia, 14, Grover Beach
Looking into the shiny glassI felt sad because it doesn’t feel goodSeeing a gorilla not with their familyAlso, I saw a lion roaringAs loud as a baby cryingLater it was hot as fire on your faceFinally my family and I left home to sleepBecause we were all tired, as weary as a mom cleaning the whole house
Ashley Walsh, 12, Grover Beach
A friend will stick with you like glueFriends will be that extra power of confidence when you’re scaredFriends will argue a lot but will still be friendsFriends are that missing piece of your lifeFriends are the best thing in the worldThey will pull through everything to know that you’re all OKThey will hang out with you every dayAnd when I sleep, all I dream about is my friends
Cooper Limon, 14, Shell Beach
Originality is the beaten path where a man once wandered,The childhood that he would forever keep concealed like fog over a town.Originality is from happiness and excitement,From joy to anger and peace to hope,Originality is formed by the people around them,Showing them the way to do things,Originality is from traumatic life-changing events,Either hardening a person to granite or opening their reach,Originality is a special thing that all people have,But only a few care to show it.
Christian Viveros, 12, Oceano
Movies are interestingLike a new video gameThen your feelings comeYour feelings turn surprising!Then they turn sadThen you’re happyYou’re having funBut you understand the problemThen you get shocked!
Ameena El Sayed, 12, Grover Beach
A cute bunny that’s white like snowWith big blue eyes like the oceanSo playful as if it was a baby catAs soft as a fluffy pillowIt always looks at youAnd when you look backYou forget all your problems and worriesBecause the bunny is cute
Samantha Echeverria, 12, Oceano
Khloe is my dogIf you stare in her eyes it is like staring into the galaxyHer little brown nose like a caramel buttonHer goldish brown hair on her fluffy ears feels like a cotton ballThe brown fur around her little smooth paw feels like a silky blanketWhen she runs she looks like a cheetah drifting through the windShe has little curls like tiny springs covering her whole headI love her like a mother loves her daughter
HOW DOES SOCCER REALLY FEEL?
Fernanda Briviesca, 12, Oceano
Soccer is my lifeTeamwork makes it all happenShooting is breathtaking I can express my feelings out in the fieldDribbling is moving around like a sneaky squirrelTrophies make you feel like you’re on top of the worldBut the best feeling ever might bePlaying under the rain in the wet green grass
Jasmin Kelly, 12, Grover Beach
Creating Olaf in the snow,I gave him a nose,Next thing I know my brothers crushed it, like an elephant that is scared of a mouse.Before I got to give him mittens,I went to go get my skis,I went down the bunny hill,I ate it, like a bear trying to walk for the first time.
Lyla Merk, 9, Los Osos Love is the taste of gushy, melting milk chocolate in your mouth at a warm, cozy home in an evening in FebruaryLove is the smell of glistening yellow flowers at midnight when the sky is darker than my new shiny patent leather shoes with a glimmering sparkle for the starsLove is when I see the beautiful setting sun at the beach with all my friends ending the day and saying goodbye until next weekendLove is the sound of a great musician playing a song I adore at a late night performance as I grow sleepyLove is the feeling of the whole world just waiting to be discovered.That’s what I think love is.
Marisol Alvarado, 13, Oceano
Friends come and goBut true friends stayFriends can become strangersTrue friends stay with you foreverFriends are people who laugh and talkTrue friends you can be crazy with themFriends are just people that you enjoy havingAroundTrue friends are like familyTrue friends are as rare as a flawless diamond
Meg Campell, 14, Santa Margarita
She dreamt of the moonSailing its coppered, shining sidesThrough an ocean of dark nightsCaptained by dreamsRowing silentlyAcross the sky.The stars in its wake,The moon rocked in the nighttime breezeSpilling its dreams into her slumbering mind,Drawing the tides to itself,She dreamt of the moon.Its wispy tendrils of peace,The moon’s maternal fingersWhispering through her hair, a mistSo comfortingAs her thoughts cradledTimeworn souls, fallen dreams,In its lap.As she sleptThe ship sailed its course.And she dreamt of the moon.
Filisteo Lopez, 13, Oceano
Soccer is a fun sport to playIt’s a sport that involves to bePlayed as a team sportTo play soccer you have to beIn good to play as a teamSoccer is like the world’s sportA player is like a cat trying to get the ratChasing it everywhere it wentJust to get the ratFrom running back into hidingSoccer is just a game to play withFamily and your friendsSo soccer is every person’s favoriteLike pepperoni pizza
Courtney Crane, 12, Grover Beach
Green is everywhereGreen is a colorful rainbowGreen is trees in the woodsGreen is as cool as a cucumberGreen is the color of pine on Christmas morningGreen is fresh grass and daisiesGreen can be sour as a limeBut as sweet as apple pie