I will never be able to forget . . .

Parachute of Grace

Again, I laughed with my brother as we flew,
From the sky like floating birds, together- -
Then I fell, as He reached.
A fallen angel… it’s now or never.

But again, He pulled the chute.
No Longer lost; And ah, the taste- -
the Breath of Life; don’t you see?
His hand, my chute, saving grace!

--S Christerson
Scotty’s Spectacular Show
(13 February 2014)

Before the show,
school seemed to drag on forever,
and when American Lit finally ended
I immediately went to the Gillioz.

After suffering through an opening act
Scotty came down my aisle and...
our hands touched

He sang “write my number on your hand”
during which
he wrote on my hand;

No words can describe
the emotion...
that mix between excitement,
shock, and exclamation.

I’ve never been so thankful
for McCreery
and sharpies

--V Gonzalez
Country of Dreams

Girl looks at the butterfly on the flower,
Butterfly seems so interesting and pretty,
She wants to chase and catch the butterfly,
But there is a fear from the first touch.

She is just one confused girl,
With a ton of packed bags next to her legs,
Holding white envelope her mom gave her for the goodbye.

Her seat is there in the crowd with the other seats,
And she sits on it like everything was fine,
But thousands of butterflies are flying through her head.

People say:
A country where dreams come true,
And it only takes courage to catch them.

--Z Jovanovic
Game Changer

Only thing on our minds
is gettin’ dirty at Class 5a State
and we will not fail again.

The stakes are higher
and the innings change
until the finale settles all.

The last pitch is smacked
way out into right field;
Kacee goes back and

in the final inning
that settles it all,
the tag is placed.

The umpire screams
out number three.
Our teeth bright from ear to ear

Great Bend High
goes to Class 5a State
. . . that settles it all.

--H Middleton
A Cardinal Memory

On a cool October day
After my classes
I got the call.

My parents had news,
News that would change
The outlook of my day.

I packed my bags,
Did all my homework,
And made sure I was ready.

We arrived Friday night
And got settled in at the Holiday Inn.
Anxious for the next day, I could not sleep.

Game One of the postseason.
People gathered everywhere
As the gates started to open.

White towels waving,
People cheering
The St. Louis Cardinals.

--A Miller
Decade Drought

An ocean of red . . . all for us to hear
District Champions and only two losses
Listen to my community cheer

Fans gather from far and near
Word of success tosses
All of the town streets are clear

The gymnasium loaded with fellow peers
Finally hard work and dedication cross
Listen to my community cheer

The Bulldogs felt no fear
A tidal wave pauses
An ocean of red . . . all for us to hear

I cut down the net with a shear
A sense of pride washes
An ocean of red . . . all for us to hear

--T Rose
In Kirk’s Presence

Aisles overflowing with wizards
And comic book heroes.
Fangirls screaming and crying,
And actors and actresses signing until their hands ache.

A Deadpool here, a Batman there,
Gandalfs scattered throughout the aisles,
While Captain Kirk sits on his pedestal
And poses with his subjects.

Before me, others chat with Kirk
About the weather, traffic,
And other meaningless topics;
Kirk barely mutters a response.

As I take my place beside the Captain,
I study his face, and see the signs of aging
Then he turns to me and says
“You smell fantastic amazing.”

--K Stout
La Ville

Dancing throughout the night
glittery reflections shimmer
across the window panes,
accompanied by a cool breeze.

The night is special,
rivaling any Mertlot or Pinot Noir
tiptoeing across the taste buds,
dancing throughout the night.

The festivities were accompanied
by feelings of euphoria
all throughout the streets,
glittery reflections shimmer

The sweet aroma lingers
long after the final call
the color of the city visible,
across the window panes.

That night’s special
that rivaled any Monet or Van Gogh
thrives within the city,
accompanied by a cool breeze.

--L Struckman
Before Returning Home

I will never forget the fear,
the words tumor, surgery,
and, the worst

And the eighth grade
was tests,
doctor’s visits,
and more tests.

Finally, the IV came out
and blood gushed everywhere.
Then, I was asleep.
To wake, knowing there will be a ninth grade.

--C Taylor
Underdogs Own the Night

3rd game of 3
 11 to 21
pirates only need 4 points

 ref's whistle echoes
announcer's voice booms

Jessi serves . . .
pushing points

 it's getting loud
the floor shakes

then the gym goes silent . . .
 'jays perch
eyes extended

hearts stop
a kill

"Somebody forgot
 to tell the Pirates
it wasn't Over"

--A Tennis
Strapped Up and Ready

When the coaches called my name
I was an Outside Linebacker
I was destined to hit that running back

Blitzing off the edge
Two receivers to my side
One slowly crept his way towards me

But as the ball was snapped
I was the one laying on my back
I was flat-lined, blindsided

--J Washington

begins on a staircase
sweaty students clutching
their carry-ons. lights fail--
yells, screams, call to groups:
Orange! Green! Blue!

pushing, shoving
doors and lines
passports presented,
questions asked
dumping, searching
Move along! GO!

papers, answers
grab and leave
enter the country
Why have you come?
     we come to help
   share His story
 to talk of what is not realiz. . .
Wrong answer

doors and lines
pushing, shoving
yelled at, screamed at,
say what they want
Why have you come?
     we come to see
   to visit and laugh
 to enjoy your coun. . .
Right answer

papers, answers
grab and leave
into the sunlight
Welcome to My country

--M White

I will always remember . . .

Soapy Hands

A little girl

Heart beating, Mind racing
Hands trembling, Footsteps unsteady

She saw her mother
Her hands were soapy.
The little girl saw her thoughts drifting and unconcerned
Like the bubbles floating around her

The little girl watched
She opened her mouth, but no words were heard
She tried again

She saw a soapy dish fall clattering to the floor
The mother spun around
Her face beamed
Tears fell to the join the dish

Relief washed over her
The little girl felt the soapy hands
Hold her tight

A quiet prayer 

--K Bash 14 Dec 2015
God’s Plan for My Future

“Duck, duck, duck”
As she walked around the squirming circle.

Sitting on the floor, crisscross,
I waited to see who would be chosen.

Grace slowly made her way toward me
Placed her hand on my head and yelled, “goose!”

She had the biggest, purest smile on her face
I was giggling as I ran after her to my final destination.

--M Conway
Five-Hour Nap

My step-dad calls me
nine in the morning,
      “Do you want to go to New York?”

Just beginning my summer
excited at the possibility
      of an adventure

Thirty minutes later,
I find myself sitting
      in the back of a cramped pick-up

en route to northern New York.
The fifteen-hour drive
      is uncomfortable and awkward.

Stuck between two construction workers,
I am unable to move, stretch, or sleep
      as I hold on to hope and arrive at the apartment.

I awoke to the question,
“Do you want to stop halfway and sleep, or drive the whole way?
      We are going back… now."
This isn't an interesting story
other than describing a wonderful nap
      that took fifteen hours to take.

--J Emery
A Doomed World

The choices I made left me cold
and alone in the dark
searching for a coat for comfort

The fragile ice shattered beneath me
I shivered in fear
Family guided me through this snowstorm
as the fading white turns filthy snow

Third week of the New Year I decide
to abandon my life to Him
ending harsh weather
and the rawness of my hands and feet

--J James
The Shine

I feel it. The stone in my chest.
It’s knocked me down, now it may take me to rest.

But if I die, before I am woken,
I pray that my stone may never be broken.

Don’t let it win, don’t stay here defeated.
As the lights grow dimmer, my stone now starts beating.

It beats, and it beats, pumped full of new light.
The sun finally triumphs over the cruel night.

That sunrise, with it comes a shining new day.
I can feel the light wake me as my stone is rolled away.

--M Kilgore
Busted Head

at the river
rocks glisten
the beating sun
shines off snow
mountainous rocks

she spots an ice patch
turning and turning and turning,
down she went.
second busted head
for this six–year-old.

--H Lancaster
Capturing A New Body

Curiously, the first spine that I ever cracked open
was not a class requirement.
It was painful to persist through,
and my nights were long and weary.
Never before had I felt this way.

The endless marks and highlights
of new ideas and thoughts,
none could satisfy my hunger.
After each conclusion
I desired more.
More names, more emotion,
more creases and finger-cuts.

The calendar months flip over one another,
the layers of rips and tears
slowly develop around my shelves
And I write new names down
on the list of future endeavors.
Each of them just as invigorating as the last,
creating me into a new man
with a new body.
But it all began from the very first spine
that I ever cracked.

A simple book about a young man
discovering a fantasy world,
The Magician's Nephew
catapults me
into my love for
the magical realm of literature.

--A Leer
In Everything We Do

Whether kids are singing in praise
or even playing kickball
He can be glorified

During quiet time
or even during swim time
He can be praised.

During chapel
or even during lunch
He can be praised.

Whether kids are at church camp
or even at the playground
He can be glorified.

--S Mart
Six-String American Beauty.

Breakfast is a delight.
Father walks in with his wallet.
A day of shopping.
A day of walking.
A day of shopping.

Cash Generator Electronics.
A shine spiels off that beautiful American
Fender Stratocaster.
Glossy red, six strings still firmly in place.
Theo! Theo! Theo! Theo!

Do you want me?
No hesitation.
Just a smile.
No hesitation.

--T Oghide 11 Nov 2015
Sicilian Shore

Crisp salty Mediterranean waves lap the Sicilian shore
Four young cousins build sand castles

Late nights on the beach, the fire of hand-made
torches tells many sinister stories.

Thousands of years of ancient history rest in sand
Roman ruins melt in Mediterranean waves

-J Pietroburgo 14 Dec 2015
What Opens the Window

. . . and makes a two-way street?
How can the present revisit,
while the past remains at peace?

This two-way street, not a matter
of chance, but a simple creation,
allowing people to glimpse.

To some, this is all they have. . .
nothing to look forward to,
nothing to hold.

To others, this street brings back
that old house on the corner,
where they first saw Peter Pan.

--A Pritchett

Too much blue.
Blue cotton smock.
Blue plastic gloves.
Blue mask showing only her blue eyes.
Blue chair threatening to swallow me.

Blue blades, and hooks of steel
letting her scrape and slice and saw.
Blinding light overhead.
Blue paper covering a tray
Blue soaking red turns purple.

Defying the blue.
Keeping my jaw locked
like a treasure chest
guarding pearly whites.
This blue will not defile.

--B Tarrant
Triumphant Journey

The peace disappears
sunshine and sandy beaches erased
suppressing her heritage
even she is a prisoner.

Chaos disembarks
greed and contemptuous eyes lurking
announcing a painful past
Will she ever touch peace again?

New independence
memories and humble soul unscathed
realizing her future
is where she finds serenity.

Matronymic acclimate
espousing my soul mate.

--J Woods 8 Dec 2015