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These pieces are selected for publication by YWP Staff, mentors and this site's Community Leaders. If you wish to participate in the selection, contact Susan Reid.

 

 
Dec 07
joseph.deffner's picture

Snow

Dec 02
joseph.deffner's picture

Winter

The brittle air encases anyone who steps out
The soft snowflakes brush your skin and get stuck in your hair
The winter is beautiful but brutal

The cold came swiftly to Vermont
In early November it was already turning young girl’s cheeks pink

The snow came soon after
Making the state a winter wonderland

Snowball fights were held on the green
Girls against boys, of course

Snow angels are sprinkled in yards
And the big hills had sled marks all over.

 
Nov 26

Confessions of the Broken Hearted

I am a thief. 

I have stolen
time so that 
it stretches like
pizza dough; 
I have hid it in my pockets
like a stolen chocolate. 
I have melted and 
molded it to fit
the shape of 
my palm, 
I have stolen 
time. 
I stole it to 
make the 
seconds feel like minutes
and the minutes feel
like hours and
the hours feel like days and
the days
feel like
forever. 

I have stolen 
time so that 
it bends and 
ripples to go by
my rules, so that
we'll never have to say
goodbye, 
so that
I'll never have 
to kiss your 
cold cheek
one last time,
as tears
create oceans
on my face,
and tissues become
paper sailboats, 
lost in the
storm of my sadness, 
and 
I. Steal. Time. 

So that it stops, 
and when 
I look at you, 
our smiles are 
Audio download:
Audio Recording 3.m4a
Nov 24

The Winter Painters

The brushes of the winter wind
Whisk across the cottage windows.
Only in the darkness do they paint
For they are shy
And work best in the night.
When the world is fast asleep
They come
They come across the freezing moor
Peering in the windows of all the houses.
Riding the tendrils of clouds
Carried along by the gusts of chilly wind.
They come to each window
And dip their brushes in the frosty air.
Then they create 
They paint small spirals and designs all over the glass.
They dance through the winter air and dab at their canvas.
When each window is a masterpiece
They retreat back to the sky.
In the morning,
The children walk up and gasp in surprise at the painters work.
They use their fingers to add their own touches to the frosty art.
Soon the sun
Melts away their work 
Clearing the canvas
So the winter painters can cover them once more.
 
Nov 17
poem 6 comments challenge: General

The Little Things

In our society we’re consumed by the number of likes we receive,
It’s assumed if you don’t have pages, and pages of friends you’re lonely,
But only, this media we call social is anything but,
Driving us further and further away from communication,
Take a break from your phone,
Appreciate the life around you,
Don’t let it slip away,
Don’t let social media control you,
Look at the beautiful trees that surround you,
Listen to the spectacular sounds that are around you,
Appreciate the little things in life,
The most simple of them all,
Maybe someone said “Hi,”
Maybe someone said “Bye,”
Maybe someone held the door,
Maybe someone did more,
Don’t ignore these little things in life,
Because in our society,
We will not be consumed by the number of likes we receive.
Nov 07

DECAF

We always meet here.

The waiter comes, I order some coffee
He asks where she is
I say she’s on her way

I can smell her
This place smells of her
She smells of this place
Our memories smell of here
They always will.

I wait.

I finish my coffee and order more; decaf
She always gets decaf, I remember
I don’t want this coffee anymore

I wait.
It’s late.
I leave.

I'd told the waiter she was on her way
 
Audio download:
decaf.poem_.mp3
Oct 29
zazu's picture

wondering why

I see the girl with the long brown hair walk down the halls, with a permanent smile plastered onto her face. It looks natural, but I know that it isn't— It's forced. She's pretending to be someone she's not so that people will like her more. I wonder why.

I see the boy with the jet black hair bouncing a basketball down the hallway. He's a good dribbler, but I know he doesn't really like sports, he likes science. He pretends not to though, so that he might get noticed more. I wonder why.

I see the girl with the tinted glasses skipping and twirling down the hallway. Most people give her a strange look as she passes by. I smile at her and she smiles back. It's not a fake smile. She's happy and ease—not trying to hide anything about her vibrant personality. Everyone else must wonder why.  
Oct 15

8:26

I cut through my spiraling, twisting, coalescing thoughts by turning my attention to my phone.
I press the small button to wake it up.
I look at the time.

8:26.

I turn again, this time away from my phone, and the thoughts come back.
Foggy, confused, uncontrollable.
I think about every action I took today
And how I could have done things differently
Said things in other ways
Left people alone for certain amounts of times.
It feels like I could think about every single thing I did for hours and hours and get no answers,
No conclusions.

I’d have to do something else.

I fumble around with small objects
I tidy the space around me
I shift a glass just a little to the right
I glance at my phone.
I hit the small button, and the phone lights up.
I see the time.

8:26.

Huh.

I pick up my phone and text the person I need answers from.
Oct 11
sophie.d's picture

On A Deserted Road

In a muddy gray car
On a thirsty dirt road
She drives with no destination in mind. 

The last drops of
Balmy air whip her hair
Into a thorny halo
And guitar-rich music
Trails behind the car.

Sweetness diffuses into
Her nose
Along with hints
Of ripening leaves
Distant cow manure
And a future pumpkin patch
(She smells her mom in the kitchen).

The sun is hovering
Somewhere over a golden lake
But she can't keep her eyes
Off the pink-streaked sky
Set over the orange speckled hills-
A crown atop a queen.

She's afraid she won't
stay on the road
As beauty hijacks her senses
But she doesn't care
Because she has nowhere to go but
Where the sky leads her.

The leaves skip from their branches
The sun melts into the lake
The last popsicle of the season.

She turns off the engine
Oct 09

Autumn

There is something magical in the leaves during Autumn. 
 
Oct 04
poem 1 comment challenge: Almost
Ella23's picture

Beginnings Always End


The scene in front of her was almost perfect.  

Almost.  

The sun was setting with gold and pink streaks,

The Robins were singing with glee as they swooped low into the treeline,

Light was shining down onto my golden hair with the warm breeze waving to the sun,

As if to say goodbye.

It was almost perfect,

Almost.

The frost that would fall next morning would only last for an hour or two,

But soon it would stay until the grass was covered in a soft, cold blanket.

The Maples would start to turn,

Leaving the trees bare and alone.

The occasional Weeping Willow would have a friend or two,

Burrowed into the trunks of trees to fall into a deep slumber.

Robins would leave,

To go somewhere else where they could sing and swoop low into a treeline,

Warm breezes would soon be hidden by the frigid winds of winter,
Sep 30
audio 3 comments challenge: General
Layjmo's picture

The Box

The Box

The idea that people aren’t the same

Seems to be something our minds cannot frame

Young people want to “fit in” and “be cool”

But is that really how we’re getting through school?

Kids are stifled, trapped in this cookie cutter

Our unique abilities tossed down the gutter

Too scared to show who we really are

But tell me, will that truly get us so far?

It seems we’re being trained to fit into a box

The way we all walk, the way everyone talks

Moves alike, identical syllabic flow

But what is it that we’re trying to show?

That we’re all able to be one and the same?

To follow societal rules in the avoidance of shame?

The alternative isn’t so bad, it turns out

Just showing the world what you’re all about

Where is the problem in that, I ask?
Sep 20
poem 0 comments challenge: General

If I Could Fold the World

Once I folded an origami rose,
Layers of curled petals spiralling,
Gently leaning back in the sun,
Wrapping in close to itself.

Imagine if I could stretch my arms and reach,
miles and miles
grasping
the North Pole with one hand,
the South Pole with the other.
Folding the northern tip of Canada down to the equator.

People would dance, arms curled around each other,
The world would gently lean back towards the sun,
The world would wrap people in close to itself.
If only I knew how.

The instructions are not folded away in a drawer,
Hidden among layers of paper.
Leaning back into my imagination’s sunfire,
I must find my own way,
Wrapping my hands close around the idea,
that will let me fold the world.
Sep 18

Sunset at Puget Sound

Sep 09
AboutToSnap's picture

Sunny days

Sep 06
emily.hess's picture

The Planet and Her Colors

Green, 
orange,
blue, and murky gray.

When I think about my planet
I think about her many colors,
I think about,
browns and yellows,
and reds and the rarity of purple.

And when I think about my planet I am afraid.

As I grow up
my colors become less vivid,
more industrial and smog
and polluted and black.

And when I think about my planet I am afraid.
I want to hold her in my hands and
show my future children the colors of the world,
I want to show them green and blue
and rainbows.

I want to show them that all their favorite colors were given to them from the Earth herself,
and I want to show them that they too can hold the planet in their hands.

When I think about my planet I am afraid,
because it is mine,
as well as yours, and hers, and unfortunately it is also his.
and we are far too often taking her
Aug 21

Foggy Photographers

Taken atop Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park.
 
Aug 14
poem 2 comments challenge: General
Lynnez's picture

Day Dreaming

Aug 10

what i will tell the hairdresser

Freedom, I used to think,
was long hair billowing
behind me in the wind
split ends and bed head and braids
down my back.

I used to mourn when
the girls I knew with long beautiful hair—
red, mostly, like tendrils of fire—
cut it all off.
Who would shed their phoenix feathers?

Now the hair which I took such care
to grow out, always growing out,
weighs upon my neck
strangles me when I lay it on my pillow,
little coils of rope, still wet.

I think I know those girls-turned-women
for I, too, thirst for an unfamiliar freedom—
one where the wind strokes my shoulders
instead of toying with dead cells—
a new kind of confidence, power, beauty.

When before have I wanted to shed the past?
 
Aug 06
poem 2 comments challenge: Left Out

The People I'd Rather Not Be


The people who know what to say.
The people who say what they mean every time.
The people who talk, talk behind others backs--it makes them cool.
The people who are loved by everyone.
The people who get the inside jokes.
The people who want to be in the circle,
and The people who are...

I am not these people.
When everyone's talking,
I'm not.
I'm listening,
until I say something.
And then those people go quiet.
You could hear a pin drop.
Because what I say is not what they want to hear.
They want the funny.
The teasing.
The flirting.
They want the right thing every time.
But I'm not those people.
I don't have the right words to give...
But then, they smirk.
Almost turn away,
but not quite.
Inviting me in, kinda.
Almost daring me to make a comment again.
Just so they can smirk at me.