Fearless Catholic Writing Camp 2019 Student Anthology-Group 1

 

All Anthology Content ©Catholic Literary Arts 2019

Leah, age 14

Mirrored Inside

When a new class of first graders walked into their classroom, they were all handed pencils.  Half of the students were gifted brand-new freshly sharpened pencils, while the other half were given small used ones.  When the class took their seats, the students with the new pencils noticed some kids had small used ones and began to laugh at them.  The teachers assigned the students to begin to trace their name and numbers.  The kids with the used pencils were easily able to complete the assignment.  However, the lead of the new pencils kept falling out, and they needed to be re-sharpened.  Finally, recess arrived and all the students with the new pencils grabbed the best play equipment and wouldn’t share.  Then at lunch the students with the new pencils separated and sat by themselves.  When class resumed the students were asked to write a story.  The students with used pencils completed the assignment with ease once again.  Unlike them, the other half were continuously sharpening their pencils due to the inadequate lead.  When the students finished the story, they looked at their pencils and were shocked.  Their pencils looked exactly like the used ones. 

This parable was inspired by current prejudices in the world today.  In the beginning the pencils caused discrimination based on how they looked on the outside.  However, towards the end of this story the students were able to see that on the inside, all their pencils were the same.   


Marissa, age 14

I, too…
(after “I, too” by Langston Hughes)

I, too, can cheer.

I am the left-out flier.
They forget about me and ignore me.
When pep-rallies come,
I’m always on the ground.
Smiling, pretending to be okay,
but clearly not.

Tomorrow,
I’ll show everyone what I can do.
They will be astonished when they see.
They will realize their mistakes
and wish they didn’t leave me out.
I will turn heads and make the crowd
roar wild. 

I, too, am a cheerleader.

 
 

Children’s Garden—a meditation 

I spy with my little eye.  These are familiar words my father once said to me.  He was a good man, a smart man.  When I was younger he used to take me to a garden.  Not an ordinary garden, but a special one.  It was so special because he said that his dad used to take him here all the time.  He said the birds used to chirp gleeful songs and the grass would sway back and forth singing a cheery song.  The butterflies would fly in circles showing off their majestic colors and the woodpeckers would tippity-tappity till their beaks grew dull.  His father taught him the game. A special game. I spy.  They would play this game for hours on end.  No one could ever ruin this game, at least not yet. 

But, one day something happened.
The twin towers burned down.  The building grew with large dark flames.  The roads filled with gray thick smoke.  The firemen panicking and worried.  My dad tried to save others.  His father told him he was only a kid.  But my dad wanted to prove his father wrong.  He got caught in the fire.  The tall building collapsed.  My grandfather tried to rescue him, but it was too late.  They both got crushed by the debris.  I used to hate coming back here.  I  didn’t want to remember that traumatic day. But now I realize, I spy a chance to make him proud. 
This is the Children’s Garden, so now let’s be loud.


Marcia, age 15

I, too, am here
(after “I, too” by Langston Hughes) 
I, too, can sing.
It might not be loud,
and it might not be pretty,
but once it hits a wall,
my voice echoes.

I, too, can see.
The silhouette of your secrets,
your light is in my hands.
My eyes reflect your soul
as well as sing my own.

I, too, can understand.
I am the shadow of a figure,
my time spent collecting what I hear
while others speak their minds. 

I, too, can make it.
Within my grasp
a bright future glows
so that when I get there,
my history will be sealed.

I, too, am here.

 

 

 
 

Glorified Morning

The sky
is so open
with the sun’s gold shining through
and the clouds lighting up
so that a new day is found
by all who look above them.

A glorified morning
silent and early,
inside the room I share with my sister
at my grandmother’s house.

With such limited time
at that house in Maine
the only thing I wanted to keep
was the beginning.

The end was too cloudy,
Too deep of a wound,
dark as night
when I had to say goodbye.


Amaya, age 14

Sisterly Love

 I, too, have sisters

I am the oldest sister,
that watches the younger
ones. We disagree and argue,
sometimes just for fun! 

However, we laugh the warm
day away, and talk together on
cold nights.  We brush and comb
our messy hair in the soft morning light.

They are my girls
that I love, it’s a fact.
All seven of us have fun
when we wash our angry cat!

SIX SISTERS, you might
say.  Yes, you heard me right.
We have fun, laugh, and play.
I thank God for them at night! 

I, too, have sisters.

 
 

Easter Truth

 White lilies blooming
After the torture God chose
Empty tomb beheld
Once again light consumes man
God has rekindled our hearts.

Honey Bees 

Humming honey bees
soaring through fields of petals
making liquid gold

Night Star Lights

 Crystals up above
Shining through the dark night sky
God’s natural nightlight


Fernando, age 16

Latin Mass
(after “I, too” by Langston Hughes)

I, too, attend Latin Mass.
I am the Ancient Acolyte.
They tell me to forget the old ways.
But I pray,
Spread incense
And praise God.

Tomorrow
They’ll be in my Latin Mass
When the Angels & Saints attend
Nobody’ll dare
Even utter
“Forgotten traditions & outdated ritual.”

Besides,
They’ll see how Reverent they should have been
And go confess.
I, too, attend Latin Mass.

 

Chris, age 16

The song I sing
(after “I, too” by Langston Hughes)

 I, too, am awkward. 

I am the anxious sister,
who cannot introduce myself.
I either open my mouth and nothing comes,
or stutter while saying my own name. 

But I disappear when parties come,
blending in the background.
Words escape my mouth
and it’s like I can’t control it. 

Tomorrow,
I will be known & loved.
I won’t stutter even once.
Nobody’ll dare ignore me.
I will for sure be seen.

I, too, am awkward.


 

Angie, age 15

The Liturgical Year

Purple, rose candles
All surrounded by a wreath
We pray and prepare
To await the greatest feast
The birth of Our Lord, Jesus 

No room in an inn
Nativity of our Lord
Born in a stable
To save the entire world
The newborn King has been born

 Ash on our foreheads
To begin the forty days
Fasting, praying and
Penance. In order to make
Reparation for our sins

Bright, snow-white garments
Our Savior from the dead
A cold empty tomb
Is the only remnant left.
Our redeemer has risen

 
 
 

 The Children’s Garden – a meditation

I walked through the entrance of the stone wall surrounded garden.  Almost instantly—I could smell the sweet floral scent of freshly bloomed flowers and a rich scene of the earth.  As I slowly moved my eyes around I examined the garden to find vibrant green grass growing all around and bright, colorful flowers of all kinds.  Happy squirrels scampered up trees while birds chirped happy songs.

I continued to walk around to find a white stone bench under a great oak tree. I sat down on it and examined more carefully the beautiful flowers around me.  There were all sorts, such as roses with a deep red color, small lavender flowers, pastel colored tulips and many more.  As I sat there in peace and silence, I had the greatest sense of peace and satisfaction that made me feel I could stay in this beautiful garden forever.


Janelle, age 18

 I, too
(after “I, too” by Langston Hughes)

I, too, fall short.

I am the prodigal son
I demand my inheritance in arrogance
When I don’t deserve anything,
But I sneer,
And bark back,
And run away.

 Tomorrow,
I’ll beg for forgiveness and help
When I don’t deserve anything.
Oh, how I hope
He will tell me,
“I still love you,”
And hold me close.

I’ll cry
And see how blessed I am
And be ashamed— 

I, too, will get back up.

 

 

Untitled

purple and pink on wall
round wreath with colors galore
the tree with décor
altar boys in black and white
midnight, the Savior is born

Ian, age 16

Tanka and Senryu

  Bells chiming in ears.
Black and white marching past pews
and so, it begins.

  

A lot of papers.
A lot of rewrites I did.
A lot of time used.
A lot of mess-ups and fails—
all for the art—writing.