+ Illustrations by Ila Davies

Where I’m from 

First in Maine . . .

With carrot-nosed snowmen and missing mittens

Sidewalk chalk, grammy’s lake, and vanilla milkshakes

Saying goodbye for the first time

Smiling, laughing, and crying

Then to D.C. . . .

With crosswalks, sidewalks, and tall apartment buildings

Bullies and crushes

Friends that always seem to leave too soon 

Sexism, mall sushi, and Legos 

Smiling, laughing, and crying 

And now in Maryland . . .

Boat rides, bikes, and salty air 

Sticking up for myself

The pandemic

Therapy and mental health

Smiling, laughing, and crying 

Place after place

I find a piece of myself

And leave one behind

Smiling, laughing, and crying.

Elizabeth Quintero, 14

Eleanor’s Dream

A DreAm of a unicorn

is All You Desire

it is in your heart 

through mine

Eleanor Missimore, 6




Is spectacular

Filled with thoughts 

Constantly processing life 

Always working to understand

Sending signals which cause our brains to wonder what is real and what is not

Is our sphere of life floating out in the universe as a lone golf ball forever

Never moving towards, but meaninglessly in a void of nothingness

Or, is Earth a dancer, spinning, twisting, twirling around the sun

Always in a rhythmic system, never stopping or halting

 Our minds allow us to be in control, to understand

                   Then how do we know that it›s not all fake and wrong 

                     How do we know that we don’t twist reality and our life

                Could we tell if we created       What If nothing was real

               What if we made up worlds              If you and I were fake             

                 Simply, a figment of                            Someone’s imagination

                If so, whose                                                        Mine, another’s

                 Maybe                                                                           Maybe not

                  Time                                                                                       Will tell

Addison Johns, 15


The pencil flew

Over three heads

And right into my lap.

I looked back to see who threw it,

Then put it in my pocket.

It was safer in my hands anyways

A pencil rolled

Down the hall

And right in front of my feet.

I looked back to see where it came from,

Then put it in my pocket.

It was safer in my hands anyways.

I used one pencil to write this poem,

And one to draw the doodle beside it.

To the owners of these stolen pencils,

They were safer in my hands anyways.

Ila Davies, 13

The Colors of Pride


The triangle that signified us and the pulse of forty-nine 


The color of plump lips and the fluid that stained the hospital steps


Healing, the color of pumpkins and the sweet smell of citrus


Sunflowers and bees and for people outside of the binary


The life being brought back into me and the fresh grass dancing in the yellow


The color of the sky, my cuffed jeans and the calmness of the ocean (and my soul)


The royal color, and the pride that I wear on my sleeve every single day I’m alive

Piper Langenfeld, 16

The Human Diagnosis

Your body talks to you

“I’m not good enough,” it says softly. 

And you believe it. 

Your mind confides in you

“I’m messed up,” it gently says.

And you believe it.

Your surroundings whisper to you. 

“We’re trying to upset you.”

And you believe it.

These beliefs don’t make you gullible. 

Questioning everything in your path doesn’t make you curious.

Feeling like every single atom that makes up the universe is trying to annoy you on purpose doesn’t make you dramatic.

It makes you human.

Karli Applestein, 17