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2019 Teen Poetry Contest Winners

2019 Teen Poetry Contest Winners

CAMPBELL LIBRARY

CUPERTINO LIBRARY

GILROY LIBRARY

LOS ALTOS LIBRARY

MILPITAS LIBRARY

MORGAN HILL LIBRARY

SARATOGA LIBRARY


CAMPBELL LIBRARY

Middle School Winner

STARS ARE 

Stars are the last speck of hope
Peeking through a velvet of blank darkness
The very core of human creativity
Opens holes for light to find it’s way

Stars are the glowing
Fish of the many galaxies
Crowding the light of newborn
Dreams in an abstract reality
Moving back and forth between
Our vision of light and dark

Shooting stars are the eagles
Their wings like iron gods eyes
Forged from the twinkle of possibility
Looking for a way to amuse every dimension
Glinting off the bright twinkling
Wings that fly for freedom to fly freedom
Going at at the speed of human capacity

Stars are the idea of
The young bursting into the brains
Of children all over the world
Reminding people that there
Is always more and to go
Forever to the end of the
Beginning

Stars are the holes from the war gods blade
Which god uses to sew the Universe back to life
When he takes a break there is
Life in jeopardy to either live or die
And he isn’t in control

Carter Cormier
Rolling Hills Middle School
Grade: 6

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CUPERTINO LIBRARY

High School Winner

Memories

A reminiscent taste that floods your tongue and carries into your mind
A familiar scent that makes you pause and breathe in deep
Or a look back at the painting from grade school that brings a gentle smile upon your lips

Each young memory is as alive and real as can be—
Spurting with color, warmth, and emotion in its boundless spirit
As you close your eyes the vivid picture is painted once again
Like masterpieces created before your very eyes
Van Gough’s starry swirls, Monet’s lucid water lilies, and Cassatt's careful strokes

Weeks and months weave into years and decades
But memories will linger
Living in the museums of our ever-changing minds

Our bodies will grow old
Our bones will become brittle
Our skin will wither
And our outer shells will mold into something different

But our minds will still carry the memories that
Taught us who we are
Taught us what is right and wrong
Taught us that what is right is not always righteous
And what is wrong is not always wrongful

And when we find ourselves in a dark place that
Seems devoid of life and hope
Remember that we carry the very origins of our life within us
We are forever bound with our memories
They are all we will have left
When the world around us has changed
Their essence remains timeless

Vardaa Molasi
Monta Vista High School
Grade: 10

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CUPERTINO LIBRARY

Middle School Winner

Worthless
I’m worthless
It’s not true that
I’m beautiful
And I know that
No one cares
You are so wrong if you say
I can do all things
I’m drowning
And you can’t convince me
To stay afloat
I won’t hesitate
If it takes me away
I will survive
Only a little longer
My pain will last
Forever
My hope will last
For a second
I don’t doubt myself
When it comes to weaknesses
I’m an absolute loser
No one loves me
Nothing anyone says could make me believe that
I am worth something
Now read the poem backward.With a different perspective, no matter how bad things are, you will find the beautiful things in
life. You are loved, cherished, and special.
Sahana Nayak
Miller Middle School
Grade: 8

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LOS ALTOS LIBRARY

High School Winner

Mother Nature

I notice
these winds
have been picking up lately,

These
hurricanes
and
wildfires
are a daily routine.

These temperatures, on
a rollercoaster ride,

Do you understand what that could mean?

Humanity’s decrepit mother,
in her regrets, and stormy tears,

Lashes down her fitful fury,
a warning
so plain,
so clear.

Yet,
we’re oblivious to her message,
shooting gray into the sky,

Isn’t it quite ironic,
that both our minds-
-and our world-
have gone dry?

So listen to the howl of the winds
To the storm, and to the flame

Mother Nature is in need of great help, and
It’s up to you
to change the game.

Suhrith Bellamkonda
Mountain View High School
        Grade: 9  
(top)

LOS ALTOS LIBRARY

Middle School Winner

Sunday

If time froze at 8am,
Warm, clumsy hands finding each other,
Groggy good morning’s
And morning breath complaints
If time froze at 9am,
Oversized glasses and soft smiles and shared quiet,
Still squinting through
The blurry haze of sleep
If time froze at 10am,
Burnt toast and coffee with way too much sugar, laughing because
I’m so glad that I’ll be spending today with you.
If time froze at 2pm,
Screaming with the radio because our song came on
Then out of breath and laughing with the windows down
If time froze at 9pm,
Lights dimmed and windows open,
Furniture moved to make way for
Shy slow dancing to the faint song of the
Night birds outside.
If time froze at 10pm,
Scary movies and microwaved popcorn in colorful pajamas, and
Clammy hands gripped tight underneath piles of blankets.
If time froze at 2am,
Insomnia and darkness and deep, emotional thoughts
The dark outline of your figure, the gentle sound of your breathing
And the delicate curve of your mouth in a small, blissful smile
Everything fits just right,
Like the way your head fits snugly in the crook of my neck,
Like pieces falling into place,
Everything is perfect, everything is right

Audrey Shen
Blach Intermediate School
Grade: 8
 
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MILPITAS LIBRARY

High School Winner

Hi

Simple yet meaningful

Like a motor vehicle

Initiates a friendship

As fast as you sharpen a pencil tip

Strangely a beautiful word

Never going unheard

Like a two letter miracle.

Although this may not be empirical,

It can powerfully break down any barrier

And make anyone a little merrier.

Makenna Ma
Piedmont Hills High School
Grade: 9 

(top)


MILPITAS LIBRARY

Middle School Winner

Seasonal Daydreams

As she goes on and on,
Speaking into a blank audience,
A sea of heads sink,
And eyes narrow,
Into an endless reign of boredom,
But the colors filter and flow above my head,
Arranging into the beautiful gradients of,
Summer, where the foamy sea softly washes onto rocks,
Leading to Autumn, as the beautiful gradients of leaves,
Fall into a deep pile beneath the tree,
And winter, in which the delicate flakes gracefully land,
In my glove with a cold tingling sensation,
At last spring where the colors weave and fuse,
Into a wave of butterflies,
And as they fly,
The color drains and fades,
As they fly far south,
And slip right out of my,
Daydream

Tvisha Nepani
Merryhill School
Grade: 7 

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MORGAN HILL LIBRARY

High School Winner

Inside

There is poetry in my veins
Flowing hard and fast
Waves of song flood my soul
Churning and crashing within the walls of my
brain While I remain a placid lake
On the outside
There are verses woven into my muscles Chords
etched into my bones
Vital as breath
My heart keeps the rhythm
So much inside
I ache as it fights to come out
No way to express
I can’t explain the worlds of wonder
My mind explores
I can’t do it justice
Letters and words aren’t enough
They’re trapped inside of me
And every night my mind swirls and crashes  With
beauty and words
That will have disappeared by dawn
And I will be left with the scars of
All the melodies, songs and words
That are in my being
That are my being
My soul has written a poem
And my life will sing it.

Normandy Hays
Homeschooled
Grade: 11

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MORGAN HILL LIBRARY

Middle School Winner

The Sun

The sun
It fills our earth with light
We need the sun
To keep on hoping when we can't
To show us how to keep shining when we don't know how
We need the sun
To flood us with warmth when we are blue
To bring us spring
To give us rainbows
To fight through
Rain and
Storms and
Hurricanes for us
We need the sun
To make our lives
Brighter, happier
To make the sky change colors when it says goodnight
To catch our kisses
Catch our wishes
To hold on to our dreams
To remind us of happiness when we forget
To love us and ight us up no matter what
To do what we can't do
We need the sun

Doris Chiang
Jackson Academy of Math and Music
Grade: 6
 
(top)

SARATOGA LIBRARY

High School Winner

vertigo
refuse to sleep in a castle of cast-off bones,
bones that hold up his throne the way they once held up a soul.
instead, sleep between the trees in the garden by the river,
ear pressed to the mouth of the banks, and listen.
sleep among the pomegranates fallen from
a tall tree with blood red fruit.wake. split one open. look down at the seeds.
feel the vertigo you once knew from tipping your head back and facing the stars.all stories are the same: fresh themes on old melodies of
fathers’ fates, mothers’ machinations, sisters’ sacrifices, brothers’ bargains.you, too, are a story, and it is one you have heard before.your first day here, you met a woman lovely as late summer and just as bittersweet.
imagine for a moment that she is your mother, bearing crown and torch.
she is not — but kneel in front of her nevertheless. listen.like you, she welcomes flowers and bids them farewell as that great hourglass turns,
her voice gaining sound only after passing through someone else’s lungs as
breath, stolen.
like you, she walks with shadows and shades for company in the gardens.
it is a different garden, growing different things, but a garden all the same.once upon a time, she reached up — hungry — and picked a low-hanging prize from
a tall tree with blood red fruit.

unlike you, she had never yet seen barren hills,
rolling like an unkempt sea during an almighty temper — a reminder to
pay tribute. give thanks. make offering. beg pardon.
so she consumed the flesh of that fruit and left the core on the ground to rot.

my dear, listen. then remember.
with stained fingers, seek answers.
sink ankle-deep into the first cursed thing you can find. palm a pomegranate.
crack it down the middle with all the force that carves trenches into the earth’s crust.
pluck out the seeds, fit them beneath your teeth, and break them.

Kyra Jee
Los Gatos High School
Grade: 12

(top)

SARATOGA LIBRARY

Middle School Winner

Still Blue

Someday, I'll learn about loss;
But he's still a spirited soul,
Lively eyes sparkling with youth.
Brown spots on white fur welcome me,
A toddler without worries, to giggle and chase him
As we celebrate his first birthday.
Someday, I'll learn about loss;
But he's still a sportive soul,
His muscles surging as he jumps in the air.
A white streak, he blazes through the house;
And I grin near crazed, a youngster filled with sugar
As we celebrate his sixth birthday.

Someday, I'll learn about loss;
Slower, he's still a friendly soul,
His stumpy tail still wags like a sleek jet
While his graying face gives a noble look;
Yet I, a growing youth, still laugh and pet him
As we celebrate his eleventh birthday

One day, I learned about loss;
Though his fur and soul are now gone,
I persist through my tearless grief.
Though ashes remain in a box, my memories stay;
That day I stared ahead, refused to accept the news
As we neared his fifteenth birthday

Channie Hong
Redwood Middle School
Grade: 8

(top)
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