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Poems submitted in 2022

My Lost Youth

by Julianna Lanze, 2022

Sometimes I remember, waking up in a chilly, air-conditioned room,

Rushing to get my stuff in my backpack for the day ahead,

Driving 20 minutes to the parks

My escape from the mean people at school.

Screaming my little heart out on all the rollercoasters, no cares in the world

My best and only friend surprising me while looking out at the lake of Universal

Dancing around with her until my feet hurt.

“I wish there was a way to know you are in the good ole days before you leave them”


Often I think back on getting ready for a long day at school,

Drained as I finish up the school day happy to be out on a Thursday afternoon

Doing my homework when my mom walks through the door,

She seems different

I go to hug her, but I can tell she’s forcing a smile

She sits me and my little brother on the couch, I knew something was wrong

She tells me my aunt passed away, I get mad at her for lying about something like that

Why is she crying?


“I wish there was a way to know you are in the good ole days before you leave them”


Two more years of highschool,

I’m starting to finally realize that nothing lasts forever

I’m getting older and there is no stopping it.

I’m scared, what do I do with my life?

Shouldn’t I be happy?

I don’t want to lose sight of who made me who I am today… my family

I could move away and live a separate life, and forget about the pain in the past

But, I don’t want to lose my best friends.

Choices are hard, LIFE is hard,

I’m not a kid anymore, I have to live up to expectations and provide for my family.

“I wish there was a way to know you are in the good ole days before you leave them”


by Adam D Fisher, 2022

I pull a tomato plant
from its plastic pack,
its fine white roots
vein the dark soil.
My trowel parts the earth,
and after I lower the roots
I cover and tamp it down,
knowing that
with water and sun
tomatoes will grow
without my even looking.

Gaia (Gaea) Earth

by Charlotte Heotis, edited by Peter Heotis, 2022

Lava throwing
Soil eroding
Shifting blinding
Fire igniting
Life destroying
Waves soaring
In the earth it’s
Growing, groaning
Ever evolving

What Happens to your Fantasies From When you Were Young?

by Evelyn Miller, 2022

Are they pulled out

Like a tooth at the dentist?

Could they be torn off

Like a Band-Aid, pulling every hair with it?

Maybe they are eagerly ripped apart,

Like a present on Christmas morning?

Or maybe they just disappear,

Like the leaves on a tree in Autumn,

Not realizing they’re leaving until they all are gone.

Magical Tree

by Adam D. Fisher, 2022

When a grandpa arrives
visits his grandson,
Jimmy jumps up and down,
“Quick grandpa let’s go
bike riding. I want to show you
my secret, magical place.
Please! Please!!” Grandpa
follows recalling that he hasn’t ridden a bike
in forty years and doesn’t know
if he remembers how.
He follows his grandson to the
garage where he finds his daughter’s
bike rusted, tires flat, chain askew.
He pumps up the tires,
adjusts the chain, and gives
it a try. He is wobbly at first but soon
more confident.  He follows Jimmy
to a path in the woods paved with wood chips,
“ See, Grandpa, I told you
this was a secret, magical place.” Just then
a couple walks by with a dog. “Well,” says Jimmy,
“almost secret, but still magical. Let me show you
my favorite tree.” They ride farther. The boy
stops lays down his bike and hugs a giant oak.
“This is the biggest tree in the forest and has magical
powers too.” Grandpa gets off the bike and holds
hands around the tree with his grandson, “You’re
right—it is magical.”

Black and White

by Charlotte Heotis, edited by Peter Heotis, 2022

Someone inked my trees in black and white
And silently did it over night
Against the covered snow below.
No one signed nor painted it, I know
I’m sure no artist’s canvas could capture
Such a scene of depth and rapture
Praise to God, for the eyes’ delight
Of outlines done in black and white.