Honorable mentions

from SN&R’s second annual student poetry contest

Middle-school honorable mentions

Time Flies

Time flies quickly by,
as the seasons change,
winter turns to summer,
the clock is running out of time,
teary eyes,
broken hearts,
as the rain slowly starts,
tomorrow is yet another day,
I hope and pray that I will be okay,
all my dreams are clotting in my head,
as I lie here still in my bed,
instead of going forward,
maybe I can go back in time,
in search of yet another rhyme,
the sky will soon surely clear,
and the sun will slowly appear,
the clock winds slowly down,
as I listen to its ticking sound,
I’m nearly happy once again,
as this poem draws to its end.

—Alyssa Campos
Eighth grade, Leonardo da Vinci School

Beauty at Our Grasp

Bricks and Flowers caress the outer layer of the corner
The smell of wood burning fills our nostrils as we take the morning stroll
Who would think that such beauty could be in our grasp?
Do we see simplicity by stepping on our porch?
The morning stroll, we will never forget
Steam pouring from mouths
Numb fingers hide in pockets
When we come to the corner we see that we are all animals,
Declaring our humanity
Teaching our children not to follow the rest
We shouldn’t be to blame
Just a morning stroll

—Morgen Whitesel
Seventh grade, Mills Middle School

We Miss U Man

Well I guess these past few days have been very grey
Everyone will always pray for you we miss you everyday
Mistakes by people are always affecting you
I’m going to always remember the things we’ve been through
Someday we will join you and things won’t seem so blurry
So until…
U and I were the best of friends but I really didn’t have a clue
Morning passes to night and I am still missing you
As tomorrow comes maybe the sun will shine on your face
Now as we are praying for you we know you’re in a better place

—Prince Saelee
Seventh grade, James Rutter Middle School

Sun and Snow

white, frozen
freezing, melting, refreshing
cold, icy, hot, blaze <bt>frying, scorching, burning
flaming, dirty

—Michael Geissler
Seventh grade, James Rutter Middle School


The sun will rise
The sun will set
Rain will fall
We’ll all get wet

Darkness will come
Filled with gloom
Birds won’t
Brightness will loom

People will wake
A volcano will rumble
A city will quake
A mountain will crumble

Families are hurt
Families are crying
Laying on dirt
People are dying

Who would help?
Who would dare?
Mother Nature
Is she there?

The sun will rise
The sun will set
Mother Nature
Is she there?
Help us, if you care.

—Jonathan N. Vang
Seventh grade, James Rutter Middle School

High-school honorable mentions

Hobby or Habit?

The kid in the back row
Shows no signs
No signs
Quiet, quiet, shhh
Friday night hobby
Becomes Saturday night habit
It’s just a hobby
California chronic
Fill your lungs
Lungs with smoke
Hold hold hold hold
Feel it hit your mind frame
Corrupt your mind wave
Numbing, numb
Weekday hobby?

—Tiffany Costa
Eleventh grade, Union Mine High School

John Wayne

See him comin’ across town
With his boots and spurs, and pistol at his side
You never look John Wayne in the eye

It is “Mister” to you, and that’s all it will ever be
You should throw down your gun
If you think you could win a shoot-off spree

Back at his ranch, his cattle graze
And the Red River crosses those lovely plains
A cattle drive is comin’ soon
Grab all the hands and head out before noon

“We’re burnin’ daylight,” he would say
When the sun was not even up.
“Got to get goin’, grab yer stuff.”
We packed up and headed out again
Another day with the bright sun so clear
And death is what we feared
Death from no water, no food to eat
And no one ever got enough sleep

So the sun was arising when they set out for the rugged trail
150 days to Kansas, and it wouldn’t take much to fail
There were mountains and streams to cross
Come encounters with Indians, and there would be a loss
But not for John Wayne and his cattle, you see
Because he was the one and only true cowboy to be.

—Shasta Cornelison
Tenth Grade, Union Mine High School

The Monkey

In a rain storm

Even the monkey

Needs a raincoat

—Andrew Johnson
Tenth grade, Union Mine High School

I Am From …

I am from a place of love, happiness and greatness.
A place where no matter where you’re at, you are always being checked up on.
A place where you are cared about no matter who you are.

I am from a place where you can smell apple pie a mile down the road and
know that it is coming from your house.
A place where you have family get-togethers at least once a month.
A place where at these family get-togethers, you have the funnest times and
the greatest memories.

I am from a place of loudness.
A place of being one of seven kids.
A place of long nights of hide-and-seek, being yelled at by our parents to
come in.

I am from a place where we travel afar to see our relatives.
A place where the great pyramids are seen from our balcony.
A place of excitement and a lot of shopping because everything is so cheap.

I am from a place of a lot of drama.
A place where he said, she said, what!
A place of a lot of thank yous and you’re welcomes when necessary.

I am from a place of a lot of yelling.
A place where my mother screams at me for the way I drive.
A place where my father discusses the priorities and morals of life in
a long lecture because I came home ten minutes late.

I am from a place where I could always be helped no matter the issue.
A place where I am not afraid to ask my parents for help if I was in any
sort of situation.
A place of love, happiness, and greatness.

—Kayla Ahmed
Eleventh grade, Union Mine High School

Anno Domini

BC was such a long time ago
        And was so far away
BC changed my world around
But that was before I really knew
        It was all lies and deception
Promises of a future that would never exist
        BC wasn’t right at all
Then I discovered AD
        And how good it could get
AD brought in new light
And fresh hope of bright futures
        BC is now done and gone
And I will be OK

—Ashley Dent
Tenth grade, Union Mine High School

College honorable mentions

The World Through a Beer Glass

I have a movie playing in my beer glass
my mind is racing, cold-filtered and facing
the clock is ticking, and time is wasting away
street lights, sports cars, coupes and SUVs,
the city, street signs, and bar fights,
darts, loud music, people, pool tables and beer breath,
everyone is dressed to impress,
I guess I’m pressed to do the same,
sporadic static, beer goggles, big screen TV or shame
lending, spending, and wishing for fame,
the jock, the hip-hop do-rag, the skater,
the fader and the fake,
the big belt buckle rocker, the mid-life crisis mullet,
and the business man in the Armani suit watching the clock,
the could-be-model babies,
the big-boned ladies staring at the floor,
the high-class desperate-for-attention tramps, the night-time betties,
and the cutest one with the innocent stamp scorned by the bees,
were all gathered for this hyped-up, whiskey and 7UP mix up,
the first one, the last one, and the rest of them missing their chances
or anyone who appears to be worse off than me,
from a high-priced glance, and the empty beer glass.

—Shawn Sutton
Sierra College


Ebony twilight
Fades to shades of gray

Velvety contours frayed
Stretch marks for all to see

Non-slip soles worn away
Reduced to household slippers

Vicious cracks and gaping holes
Reveal white cotton underneath

Oil marks and mystery spots abound
Bloodstains and breakfast mishaps swap war stories

Seven years old, over the hill
Still worthy of a few more adventures

—Zachary Evans
Sacramento City College

Grandpa’s Work Hat

Dingy, off-white fishing hat
Never used for fishing
Stained with sweat
Weathered like his stretched
Faded skin

Wore it everyday while he built
The world with his bare hands,
Toiling like the ancient oak that twisted
Unnoticed toward the sky

This faded canvas hat
Is all of him I can touch

—Victoria Koberlein
Sacramento City College

Your Cancer

Dissolving your existence
In a puddle of chocolate pudding
Stifled by pungent gauze
You sit and wait.

They creep from their rocks
Staring and prodding
Attempting to expunge their absence
Now it’s too late.

Anticipating deliverance
With each inhalation
Tottering between elusive worlds
Endlessly you wait.

Silent and stoic
Longing for sleep
Watching you wilt in your defeated body
I sit and wait.

—Victoria Koberlein
Sacramento City College

Rainy April Days

The phosphorescent
Off tattered city streets
Shimmers as passing autos
Sear and hiss,
Creating impressionistic
The drizzle-drip
From grayish puffs
—Rung out—
In—darkened deep blue
Of atmospheric mist,
Leaks until absorbed
—By eager slabs of asphalt.

—T. Blackmon
Sacramento City College