Feb 23
essay 0 comments challenge: New
madeleinec0's picture

The consumerism cycle

The feeling of new is sickeningly addictive. From a young age, we quickly discover that new stuff makes us "happy." New toys or foods or places or clothes, bring us so much excitement and temporary joy, that for a moment we forget all other worries. This feeling brings a rush of excitement and light into our lives, yet the feeling fades quickly, into boredom and dissatisfaction, thus calling for the cycle to repeat.
Feb 12
lvaughan's picture


February vacation was next week and everyone was excited. During the morning meeting, everyone took turns saying what they were doing. Rebecca was going to visit her cousin in New Mexico. Bobby was going to Paris. Betty was going to Louisiana. John, Sally, and the teacher were going to Iowa. Sam was headed north to Canada. Ana, Tammy, Tessa, and Matthew were going to Florida.

When it was Amy’s turn, she told everyone that she was staying in Vermont. Amy then explained that her February vacation consisted of helping around the farm like she always did and helping to get ready for the sugaring season. Her family had a sugar house in the woods surrounded by maple trees, perfect for making syrup. Every February vacation they would prepare for the upcoming season by making sure everything was hooked up, ready for the sap. Once they got that ready, it was time to start drilling holes into the trees. After explaining all of this, their morning meeting continued as planned. 
Feb 04

Frosty Morning two

Jan 27
The second mouse's picture

Remember Me Gently

He came first in a ragged manner, dressed in solemn garb.
He floated, like a wilted flower, pounded by the rain, among the mourners, adverting their eyes at his presence.  
An unwarranted pity grew in my heart as I watched him, his eyes falling at last upon the casket of our loved.
I was drawn to him in the strangest manner and did not fight the urge, tapping his shoulder.

“What is your plan?” I asked in a voice low as not to be heard by the rest.

He stared for a moment responding “I will take him just as I have taken all before him.” 

“Why,” I questioned, keeping my voice one of nonchalant curiosity, of which I was trying to succeed “why do you choose this”

He smiled a heartbroken smile that could have shattered the strongest of souls“Ah, but I do not choose this life. I am a mere tool of those unwilling to look me in the eye, those turned from the truth.” 


Jan 21
poem 0 comments challenge: New Day

Wait for it

I see that he's president, finally. 
I see he seeks to erase his predecessor
and the tyranny that rushed through the administration that came before, I see how he is good, not bad, however simple those words may be. 
I see how he, instead of looking down on the people,
looks up to them and seeks to serve them, not himself. 
Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country, that is his rule. 
Ask not, what can I gain from this. 
Ask, how can we gain from this. 
How can we reverse the scars and tears that were carved into our history? We cannot, should not erase the pain of the people. To do so would belittle all the suffering the people have faced. 
We can, however, seek to eradicate the mandates, the sermonic rules that created that pain, that suffering, in the hope that our actions will prevent it in the future. 
Jan 20

President Joe Biden

These are more photos from November 7th.
Jan 16

Smoke Signal

Jan 10

Photos (random and not connected)

Jan 08
Ada123's picture

Oak Tree

I walked past a crumbling stone wall; it was covered in moss, and acorn shells littered between the rocks showed that squirrels had once been there. The stone wall ended, leaving a gap between where the wall would start up again. I walked through the gap, following the path that had been made by the numerous times animals had trampled on the tall grass to get to the other side of the field.

    I followed the path, feeling the grass graze against my legs. I kept my head down low, not wanting to see what was ahead before I reached my destination. I knew what was ahead; I had come to this spot time and time again, but I kept my head low anyways, navigating my way through the tall grass and chirping crickets. I reached the clearing on the other side of the field.

Ice Fishing

“Time to get up,” said Dad. Half awake, I had almost forgotten that we would be going ice fishing today. We get ready to go by packing all of our gear, checking the tip-ups and loading up the truck. We need extra warm clothes today since we’ll  be out on the cold ice all day. 

We drive to Lake St. Catherine and once we get there, we unload the truck. Today is going to be a good day out on the ice, I think to myself. We walk around on the ice until we think we have found a good place to fish. We use the auger to drill holes in the ice and get the tip ups in.  Now all we need to do is wait until a fish bites.

    I like to jig while we wait. Jigging is when you have a little pole and bait and you drill a hole in the ice and fish with your jig pole. You usually want a lot of holes. I only jig a few minutes in every hole. It is better to have a portable fish finder so you know where to fish. You usually will catch panfish but I've caught others. 
Jan 07
Alaina Cimonetti's picture


Flying free beyond the shimmering shore, 

Riding where no being has gone before,

Flowing, skipping steps on the darkened grass, 

Hoping that the moment will always last.

Trying to flee from all that cursed past, 

Feelings, freeing but what that feeling cast, 

And leaving the last shards from what has crashed,

Knowing that the moment will always last.
Horses neighing and the horses braying, 

Trying to escape the feelings attack, 

Riding, crying, while fleeing on his back, 

All for hope that the moment will not pass. 

All is trying, hope relying one day, 

those magical, beautiful moments last. 
Jan 06

Matar (to kill)

I am doing history homework 
when I watch the Capitol fall. 
                  (Ironic, isn't it? History always repeats itself.) 

We were trying to watch the 
electoral votes being counted and suddenly 
a push           no a wave 
of red, exclamations about gas masks 
and armed rioters and for a second 
I thought we had been transported 
right back to where we came from.
                  (God! my mother exclaims. It reminds me of Iran!
Please tell me what to do.
I am fifteen years old and I am watching 
democracy burning, burning. 
I am fifteen and I am watching a red man sprawled over
the vice-president's seat, confident. 
                  (It's funny, the smoke kind of smells like spit & passion, 
                   like hurt & tears, like treason & smashed glass.) 
There are pictures, guns drawn 
and I watch the news anchors repeating 
Dec 25
Icestorm's picture


i. dremel uvula
we are girls. to hope is to expect. to revert back
to sticky hands, to beg between tantrum sobs
for lullabies. we are girls, we polish
our sentiments (with sandpaper tongues)
down to shining minimums
before bending at the waist to spit them
onto the kitchen table, beside the clay vase
of cut carnations. we girls wipe away excess saliva, knowing
nothing tastes as cloying as an apology. we girls dance
to the clatter of amethyst
on expectant dinner plate. to the fine china shards
we tape to brick walls. girls, girls
almost as demanding as
the word pretty.

ii. gardeneress
the gardeneress twists submission from silence
like warm bathwater from a washcloth
& hangs them both up to dry. looking at bookshelves
the same way she yanked out her son's teeth
in the dull living room bulblight. he watches as she
Dec 23
Francis.Kautzman's picture

Say their names - a photo series

This is a series of photographs that were taken in the summer of 2020 during a Black Lives Matter protest taking place on Church Street in Burlington, Vermont. The photos capture the expression and passion of the crowd marching through Burlington. These photos were shot on a digital camera in color and converted to black and white in post production. In this work I tried my best to capture close up portraits of people's expressions as well as their signs. They are showing the people's reaction to the mistreatment of Black Americans across the nation. It made me feel hopeful that so many Vermonters were willing to show up to protest.                            
Dec 17

Cat on the windowsill

Coiled on the windowsill
watching as the snow falls down
from a leak in the clouds

a tail like an old grandfather clock
swish, swish, swish
giving the occasional thump on the wall

someone splattered the unwanted colors
and she was caught in the mix –
she is only black, brown and white now

small breaths fog the glass
steam like the hot cocoa being
passed around the table

nose pressed against the cold window
almost as though she can touch the feathery frost
that lines the windowsill

satellites sit atop her fluffy head
twitching at the smallest sound
always listening

collar purple like the old wrapping paper in the basement
or the dried out flowers on the counter
or the little girl's coat, except it is not speckled in snowflakes

still, on the windowsill
stomach rising up and down
gentle, calm.

The messenger

Pen and watercolor.
Dec 12


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Young Writers Project is grateful to VTDigger.org, a nonprofit news operation in Vermont, for publishing selected YWP writing, art and photos each week. Please support the young writers and artists by going to VTDigger.org and leaving a comment. 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 YWP Executive Director Susan Reid.