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"Zentangle," illustration (cropped) by gigikelly1005. Post your photos and art here for publication in this space.


The Daily Read

Jun 26

I Felt It

On November 25th, 2013, I woke up to morning rain.
It was maybe a good forty degrees, something like that,
and I wasn't ready for the day at all. It was a Monday.
God, I still hate Mondays. They're an enemy to us all.
I made the careful decision to bring coffee to school,
caramel swirl in a thermos mug,
and pulled on a pair of new jeans and a t-shirt.
My mom commented on my style with some distaste.
As I fixed my hair, I felt my heart throbbing a little
and I wondered why it did that.
There was a tension in the back of my throat
and my chest was clenching in fear and sadness
as though I was experiencing some kind of loss,
but I hadn't lost anything recently and everything was fine,
but nothing felt fine at all.
I felt a little sick and barely touched my coffee.
It tasted like soap and I left it on a table when I got to school.
The cafeteria was full and some kids made fun of my clothes.
Aug 02

Today's Tiny Write

Recent Daily Reads

Jun 24

A dream a thousand stars old

The wet juice

From the strawberry


Dripped down her chin

A small piece of happiness, but

All the same


Is the joy of living.

Do you take joy from the brush of ink across the page,

Swirling in its own ecstasy?

Remember that

Words written in stone one thousand stars ago

Can find their own meaning

In the stars today.

And if a little boy dreams of reaching his nebula some day,

Why stop him?

See what we can do.

Watch us.

Hush, child.

I am trying to tell a story

One thousand stars old.

Once there was a little girl who

Did what she was told and sat with her hands in her lap,



Now, good night, deary.


We say

Staring up at the stars above our window
Jun 24

Middle School - An odyessy

a sail to the wind
caution has flown
run little girl
run all the way home
keep your eyes
on the vanishing horizen
breathe in the cool night
which the stars soon arise in
a song of forgiveness
gives hope to the sea grey
hold close my hand
please let me stay
somedays you hurt me
and somedays you heal
somedays i'm dreaming
somedays it's too real
imagine a miracle
the bringing of the light
i'll change the world
and you hold me tight.

Jun 23


This morning the sun,
beyond the birch grove, 
ripened like a summer peach. 
The river rushed to the ocean. 
My body was a core of closet dust. 

This morning dark stones on a ledge 
descended in handfuls: 
slipping into each other, 
tumbling like an uptight crowd. 

His gaze drops like a feather
to the wilted corner of the vacant bedroom 
where a pile of ruffled notebooks 
sit slouched, untouched 
in over a year. 

You promise yourself 
not to be static,
not to get stuck,
not to be a moon for someone 
else's planet. 

The boy behind the blue cash register
at the corner store accidentally
circles you in his sleep. 

When you were younger
you revolved around a model
of Pluto, downsized
and jammed into a jar. 

Usually, bookshelves 
hold people adept to looping 
the lip
of sink drains and kissing
Jun 18

map of quiet

for mom

words washing up on paper
like shells from the sea.
the evolving pattern of tomorrow
determined by our choices made today.
the map of quiet laid out before us
beconing with the promise of still.
the map of quiet forever beside us
waiting for a u-turn in this road.
the map of quiet is the map of time,
the map of patience, the map of life.
be quiet as you walk this map of dreams


Recent Daily Reads

Jun 19


sure, it’s gorgeous here;
i have plenty of nature’s glory
in these winding mountain roads,
but they make me citysick
& i need proof of human decay.

let’s go somewhere
where there are a million lonely people
broken smiles and cigarette fingers
we’re sane because everyone’s alone.

why is it that emptiness is heavy,
but skyscrapers make me light?
open meadows are exquisite
but they don't fill me the way
symphonies of taxi horns
& masterpieces on subway walls do.

i’m sorry to betray the stars
by choosing neon lights over constellations,
but there are some things
that are seen much clearer
from a hotel fire escape.
Jun 18


An issue that matters to me? That's easy. I don't like the closing of small schools (school consolidation). I don't think the state should have the right to close a school, especially one that has  been around for so long, to save money (which it didn't). I don't want to hear all the 'it will give students school choice' or 'students will get better options/educations in bigger schools'. We were doing just fine. Our town is a small community. What makes you think we want a bigger school? We are used to small and we like it. I don't like that the town had the option to close my high school. WHY DON'T YOU ASK THE KIDS THAT ACTUALLY GO THERE? I want everyone to know my story on this. 
Jun 15
poem 0 comments challenge: Blue

Paint a flag on your skin

It was the most 
beautiful shade of 

the flag that 
was imprinted on her skin, 
right next to her eyes 
that shone brown. 

And then the 
king that had thrown 
a revolution of hate 
decided that he didn't like the fact
that she wore it so beautifully. 

This is the story of 
a people's rebellion. 

Once upon a time,

the king went through the kingdom
and ripped it off people, 
one by one, 
when he decided that they didn't fit
with what he thought was right. 

He looked at the people 
whose flags where still slowly
being drawn on, 
who had chosen it out of love 
or come here out of desperation 
and decided that the way that they 
clashed a little with the other colors
against their skin was 
an abomination and he tore 
the newly growing things off. 

He looked at the people
Jun 14

oma koti kullan kallis

The evening before Vappu, my grandmother would spend the entire night in the kitchen, kneading dough, slicing cabbage, and whisking batter-- all of this happening simultaneously as we drowned in spice-perfumed air, surrounded by piles of delicate kaalikääryleet cabbage rolls and sweet tippaleipä cakes we were forbidden to eat. While my siblings and cousins played outside, I stayed with my grandmother in the kitchen, transfixed as her careful hands heated the fragrant makea manteli oil over the stove. I was fascinated by the way the thin, wispy tendrils of dove-grey smoke curled towards the ceiling like slithering serpents. The air would fill with the heavy, sweet smell of simmering almond oil and the warm, bright scent of orange peels and vanilla, smothered in a smoky blanket of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove.
Jun 11

YWP awarded national grant!

[Credit: Ryan Mercer/Burlington Free Press]
We’re thrilled that Young Writers Project received a $25,000 national grant from USA TODAY NETWORK’s A Community Thrives initiative! We were one of 16 national grantees, selected from more than 1,500 applications to A Community Thrives, part of the Gannett Foundation.This grant will help support a new community journalism project for the 2019-20 school year! More details here.

Thanks for all your support!

Dec 07
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THANK YOU to our generous supporters including those featured above! Please support them and support YWP, too! DONATE TODAY! 

YWP News

Jul 30

Community Leaders' Newsletter

Let's flood Sophie with inspiration!

May 31
sophie.d's picture

Good Thoughts

Hi YWP writers!
I’m Sophie Dauerman (sophie.d on the site). I started the initiative Good Thoughts, which is a project designed to share your inspiring words with the Vermont community. I'm asking for your unique "quotes", which will be lettered onto small squares with art and scattered throughout the community. 
YWP editor's note: Original posts may have been lost due to a IT error. If you don't see your inspiring words here, please add them again! This time it will work. Thanks! 
May 24

Summer of Stories

Join us for Summer of Stories! Every week until Aug. 9, write to weekly writing challenges and submit photos and art for prizes in August. See all the challenges here and the challenges for Week 4 below.
May 23


Is there something special or unusual about your family? Do you have a kooky aunt or a famous cousin? Do you have a favorite spot where you gather in the summer? Funny family traditions and rituals?
[Unsplash, photo by Mike Scheid] 
May 23


Sometimes you get a feeling in the pit of your stomach about a person or situation. Was there ever a time when your intuition was right? What happened? What about a time when you were wrong?
[YWP photo library, photo by Shawn Baker] 
May 29


[Photos and challenge by Erin Bundock, YWP alumna]
Set the mood with low-key lighting. Post your photos in a slideshow or post one photo and write a short story or poem inspired by the photo. Need tips? Check out this article.

Recent comments

May 15

Summer Writing Workshop

Credit: Alexis Brown, Unsplash
Write with Jennifer Cohen at Vermont Commons School: Monday, July 15th - Friday, July 19th, 9:00- 1:00; OR Monday, July 22nd  - Friday, July 26th,  9:00 - 1:00. Ages: Must be at least a rising 7th grader. Cost for one week: $300. Location: Meet at Vermont Commons School (75 Green Mountain Dr., South Burlington), but will venture outside to comfortable, inspiring places. Bring your own lunch. ABOUT THE WORKSHOP: Jennifer Cohen teaches English at Vermont Commons School in South Burlington, VT. She has taught for 27 years and has masters degrees from Harvard and the University of Washington. Of this workshop, she says: "This summer workshop will gather creative writers who will plan a week of short readings and creative writing, based on their individual interests.
Jan 09

Post Your Art & Photos!

YWP is looking for your visual art -- photographs and scanned art -- to be featured in our monthly magazine, The Voice, on the front page of the site, the newspaper series, and the Anthology! Respond to this challenge and post your best photos and art!

Sep 22

The YWP story