The week before last, I wrote about the poems the students in my 7th grade class wrote for their first major assignment. This past week, the students turned in their poems and read them out loud to their classmates. They were pretty nervous but all did a great job – they presented their poems with passion and pride.
Here are three of my very favorites:
How thoughtful is the sentence “I am a poem who is writing myself?” It’s a great metaphor of what it means to be a human being — for aren’t we as humans continually “writing” ourselves — who we are and who we want to become each and every day? And a poem that is writing itself is indefinite, will seemingly continue to write itself over and over forever and forever, unlike a person’s life, which one day must come to an end.
G’s language level in English isn’t as sophisticated as V’s, but I’m pretty proud of G’s poem, nonetheless. I’m proud that he completed the poem and read it aloud to his peers as he struggles to complete most of his classwork and is painfully shy. The sentence “I am a black boy who lives in Statenice” is simple, direct, but when G read it out loud it was powerful. He is the only black boy in his class and the only black boy I have seen at our school. Read aloud, the statement became a proclamation to his peers that he is proud of being black, that he is proud of the continent, Africa, where he is from and which he still wonders about and dreams to return to one day.
B is also very shy, but is quite sharp. When she looks at you, she doesn’t break eye contact. She really looks at you; it’s a little unnerving! As someone who likes to draw, she is very observant about the world around her. She is only twelve years old, yet she understands the difference between just “existing” and truly “living.” She also understands that looks can be deceiving, something might appear one way but mean another. My favorite line of her poem is this one :”I pretend I am silent.” I feel that, in this line, B is saying that though she may be quiet, she is not weak-minded. She has a lot to say but chooses to speak through her drawings.