Unifying Through Poetry 


A Collection of Poems by Aspiring Poets & Future Educators


  • Never Lose Sight of My Inner Child: Poems about Childhood

  • Brussel Sprouts by: Zach Retterath

  • How One Knows Autumn Is Here by: Jessica Osos

  • Teacher, Teacher by: Brittany Holmes

  • Molly Bear by: Christina Sauchak

  • Why I Love 7099 Dibrova Drive by: Christina Sauchak

  • Guardian by: Justine Albaugh

  • I Am the Bird of Whimsy, I Am the Bird of No Care: Poems about College

  • Who am I? by: Matt Wright

  • Night Before by: Sarah Melnick

  • The RA Life by: Nicole Hagen

  • Roommate Problems by: Sarah Melnick

  • Our Garden by: Jayne Gendreau

  • You Said This....You Said That...You Lied: Poems about Heartbreak

  • Leader by: Chris Shin

  • I’m NOT that Innocent by: Meghan Rohen

  • Liar by: Meghan Rohen

  • With the Sunny Side Down by: Katie Weed

  • meet me under the trees, where you will always be: Poems about Love

  • Afternoon Amore by: Taylor Cummings

  • Bobby Pins by: Liz Buckner

  • This One is for my Baby by: Aliya Krall

  • Wedding Blessings by: Alecia Hinston

  • Warmth in Winter by: Alyssa Towns

  • Love Haikus by: Caitlin Jordan

  • For every hug missed, every tear shed, every moment you could not see: Poems about Loss

  • Coming Home by: Nicole Hagen

  • Without Him by: Justine Albaugh

  • Mirror by: Jenna Tobin

  • When Sandy Comes to Town by: Kari Dinsmore

  • That Program by: Kelsey Langlois

  • First Easter after my Mother’s Death by: Laura Apol

  • Safely Tucked Away: Poems about Reflection

  • Sitting at the End of the Dock by: Taylor Cummings

  • How I Make Sense of You by: Chelsea Gose

  • All Things by: Megan Johnson

  • Orange Juice by: Megan Johnson


Never Lose Sight of My Inner Child: Poems about Childhood

Brussel Sprouts


No one likes you.

Your family comes

out of the ground

like some alien,

green bean stalk.


I fight incessantly

To avoid you.           

You follow me

too closely and

I can never seem

to break off from you.


I don’t know what

you expect from me.

Perhaps to say

that I am wrong

to judge you

without tasting you.


Is that it?

Fine, come here.

let me rip you

free from your cluster

of friends and family.

Not so tough now

are you?


Fill the pan

with golden oil

and pig fat.

carve you into

quarters so you

can’t fight back.


Sautee you until

you’re plump and crisp

and fit rightly

into my malevolent,

masticating mouth.

Then return again

to my plate to

eat a friend.


Or perhaps I

will tear off your

jade jackets,

bit by bit,

and torture you

to make it clear

that I can’t stand you.


Your exquisite essence.

Your tantalizing texture.

Your cool color.


maybe I don’t

hate you after all.


-Zach Retterath


How One Knows Autumn Is Here


You’ll see the leaves turn bright colors.

Bright shades of red, orange and yellow reflect on the water.


You won’t see the different hues of green.

The colorful flowers will all wilt and brown.


You’ll wear your favorite sweater.

The air is cool and soon the water will be frozen.


You won’t be wearing shorts outside.

All the summer clothes are packed away until the world warms up again.


You’ll watch scary movies.

In the dark and cuddled under blankets, you can’t help but scream.


You’ll visit an apple orchard.

Fill your tummy with doughnuts and cider.


You’ll snuggle up with your favorite someone.

Happy and content with the “cuddle weather.”


You won’t be so happy once the warmth slips away,

when Autumn is ending and the snow starts falling


when the frost sneaks in and chills you to your core.


-Jessica Osos

Teacher, Teacher


You say I act out and don’t listen to you

And say I should do as you always do


But teacher you don’t get it

You aren’t hearing me are you

You’re listening but my words don’t really get through


I’m calling out for help even though it’s silently

But I yell for everything else hoping maybe you’ll get me


But I’m tired and annoyed when I can’t make a noise

And your ignorance has got you thinking it’s because I’m a boy


And I say I hate myself and you say that’s not true

But come stand in my shoes and you’d hate you too


Cause I’m told everyday that my life isn’t worth shit

And all of my energy has already been spent

At home where I walk on glass all day long

Tip-toeing around hoping their anger will fade

And I guess I don’t know what I want you to do

but isn’t there a law or something so you can report it too


See I’m trying to listen carefully to you

But see my message just isn’t getting through

I don’t think you get what I want you to do

I need a helping hand and it has to be you.

- Brittany Holmes

Molly Bear                                                                                                                                          

With silky fur so soft and gray,

I waited in a box to play.

December second, nineteen ninety two,

was the day that I met you.

Looking through my big brown eyes,

I saw that you were mesmerized.

My head was straight, my face unworn,

but over the years, it has been torn.

You never let me leave your sight,

and held me close with all your might.

You dressed me up on Halloween,

and in every photo I can be seen.

I’ve been many places by your side,

in the car, plane, or a long train ride.

I have seen you stressed, angry, upset, and mad,

but when you are happy, I am so glad.

My nose is tattered, and I am falling apart,

but you will always hold a special place in my heart.

-Christina Sauchak


Why I Love 7099 Dibrova Drive


Because in the sweet summertime all is green

and the reflection of the blue sky and soft clouds

can be seen on the serene surface of the sparkling lake.


Because the long branches of the Weeping Willow

dance along the shoreline where my 7 year old self  once chased minnows for hours,

and built sandcastles and made mud pies in the warmth of the sand grains.


Because I watched my dad labor in the yard for hours,

popping a fresh, grape tomato from his garden into his mouth,

while tending to his juicy meat which simmered on the grill.


Because when my mother saw a ripple in the water

she jumped to her feet to grab a fishing pole,

and stood patiently on the dock as if she had 0 things to worry about.


Because at age 9 I spent hours in the grassy field picking wild flowers,

and chasing fireflies at dusk, smelling like bug spray and campfire.


Because when morning came again it meant another day on the lake,

navigating around the small body of water in the rowboat

that was built by my uncles when they were once young.


Because back then there were no laptops or cellphones,

and so much pleasure was found simply by being at the lake with family.


Because today Lake Dibrova is the place I go when I need a break,

Because I can still take walks to the mulberry tree down the street,

or splash in the water with my cousins as if we were still 9 years old.


Because now that I am grown I appreciate the fact

that my cottage on Lake Dibrova was built from the ground up

by the hands of my grandfather and great grandfather.


Because I never had the chance to meet either of them,

but they both look down on me from heaven

and remind me  to never lose sight of my inner child,

who spent so many sunny days at 7099 Dibrova Drive.

-Christina Sauchak




I confront you first as I walk into my house.

Ashamed to confess my sins,

eager to boast my accomplishments.

I rehearse my speech to you as I pace your foundation.

You—gave me strength to face my family.


My parents’ hover

over you—

Standing  s  t  i  l  l.


my baby sister and I grow

into young ladies.

Setting us free—

but resisting the urge

to not let us go.

Driving away with friends

and boys.



their long shuffle up to the door

across your stone.

You’ve even tripped one,








Inscribing your


on his fleshy wounds.


My dad’s personal assistant,

doing all of his dirty work.

An outlet for him to reveal

his protective nature

while hiding behind

his welcoming exterior.


Your long narrowing path

along the driveway hails

friends, neighbors, and family

into our home.

You give us peace,

a place to rest.

Countless warm summer evenings—

Mom sipping her wine,

enjoying the sunset and the company.

Knowing that we’re all together

on the front porch.


-Justine Albaugh




I Am the Bird of Whimsy, I Am the Bird of No Care

Poems about College

Who am I?


I am the bird of whimsy

I am the bird of no care

Every inch of my tail tells a story

Every feather,  my glory


I fear no weather, no ocean, no land

I fear nothing, except man

Man is the reason I continue to fly

Man, who hunts my coat, and looks for me in the sky

I have never known what its like to be wanted

I have never seen another, one of kind, my tail flaunts it

But I like being alone, me, myself and I

But I wonder why I was made to be alone, they say I should find the cat in the bowtie


I am not alone, I am free

I am not alone, no one knows what its like to be me­-



-Matt Wright

Night Before


My final paper is due

and I can’t come up with a topic.

I stare at the window and

watch the snow fall

to the ground for ten

minutes. I turn back to my

computer and type whatever

comes to my mind.

“fnsdkfnasfnsmnfam i need to focus!”           

that does not help, so I do what

I do best. Take a nap and

hope it will come to me

in a dream.


-Sarah Melnik

The RA Life


The door swings open like in the kitchen on thanksgiving –

the room changes though.


A dressing room, a counselors’ office,

a friend’s house, the place advising appointments are held,

the principles office, a movie theater,

anything you could ever want.

The hours are 24-7 – never closed,

always staffed by the same friendly-faced girl.


No judgment is given,

laughter is occasionally heard spilling out into the hall,

sometimes there is the soft sounds of sobbing.

Life passes but in this room life stands still.

There is no class, no exams, and no homework.


At the end of the day though,

the door closes,

the click of the lock is the last sound heard,

the room turns into my dorm,

and there is just me.



-Nicole Hagen

Roommate Problems


I have worn

your favorite black

sandals to class



you told me

not to

wear  your things

but I did anyway


I’m not the bad

roommate so I

left sour patch

kids on your desk


-Sarah Melnik

Our Garden


Imagine walking

into a house

almost like a garden—


A garden of flourishing

friendships where each

woman is nourished


for who she is.

In this garden the

fleur de lis blooms


with, dignity, staleness

and grace.  Prosperity

and success are key


here, but beauty

is found in the petals

of our sisterhood.


If you listen,

you can hear

the wise owl


in this garden we call our home.


-Jayne Gendreau


You Said This....You Said That...You Lied

Poems about Heartbreak



She’s a leader.


She leads the way

I follow.


She guides me where to go

I listen.


She steers me down the path

I walk that path


Dead end.


She led me on

a dead end.

Dang. Dagger straight through my heart.


-Chris Shin

 I’m NOT that Innocent


I have read

your texts

that were not

to me


but to

the girl who

you said

you were “just friends.”


Forgive me

they were heartfelt/private

so harmless

and so conniving.


-Meghan Rohen


You said I was…

Your dream girl,

Your one and only,

Your true love.


You told me that you would…

Never love another,

Never cheat,

Never give up on us.


You promised that we would…

Be honest with one another,

Be strong and hold on.

Be together forever.


You said this…


You said that…


You lied.


-Meghan Rohen

With the Sunny Side Down

When you picked me out

and yoked us together

it beguiled and excited my heart.

But you ignored the handle with care warning.


Without a shell,

your tricks turned me over and over--

easy for you,

playing with my fragile heart.


You can confuse and scramble me

carelessly yet carefully

to keep my tears



You’re a bull.

And I’m on a beautiful china dish,

and all the king’s horses,

and all the king’s men

can’t put me back together again.


-Katie Weed

meet me under the trees,

where you will always be. . .

Poems about Love

Afternoon Amore


The clock strikes two,

slipping out the back door

of the house I don't feel welcome in.


Stopping at the market

to grab the freshest grapes

and  the promiscuous red wine.


Leaving my life behind,

to escape the loneliness

I find myself living in.


 I long to be held

in caring, strong arms

that never want to let go.


 Amongst the dark forest

away from the town,

awaits our secret hide away.


 Same time every week,

meet me under the trees,

where you will always be. . .



my afternoon amore.

-Taylor Cummings




Bobby Pins

A single slender staple of the science of indecision,

 Misplaced far too many to count

Reappearing in bottomless back-pockets

 and on bedside tables of those I love- and have loved.


A little loop of metal to the left of my brain,

Masked by a mass of muddy hair that belonged to my mother thirty years before.

A pin that cannot be kept for more than a week,

And cannot be kept in the same spot for more than ten minutes



A little loop of metal to the left of my brain,

Serving as a constant reminder of my indecision. 

An indecisive push then an indecisive pull,

This is how it is with me.

            -Liz Buckner

This One is for my Baby

 What a love story

one of a kind,

the guy I can always count on ,

you Freak out every time I leave

begging me to stay,

you snore like a 500 pound man

eat like a horse

and smell like a pig

you are a non-respecter of

personal space

you’re a bed hog

and even like to ruin my showers.


last week you

shredded my favorite shoes,

drooled on my blanket,

ate my sandwich,

and let me chase you in heels.


You love to cuddle.

take long walks,

even car rides

of course I drive,

you let me watch chick flicks,

and even like them

but most of all

you never let me down

comfort me

when I cry

keep me company

and wag your tail

at all the right times

Titan, you’re a girl’s bestfriend.

            -Aliya Krall


Wedding Blessings

 Baby bride,

Why rush? 

Why not wait?

So much time,





But now we’re here

And you’re dressed in white

I’m in the pew

smiling at the man by your side.

May he give you love

And cherish you all your days.

I only hope

You’re not making

A mistake.

-Alecia Hinston


Warmth in Winter

 I’m the cold chill, sweeping

across your town, bringing

you to wrap your jacket

a tad bit tighter.


I’m a snuggled mug,

whose aroma comforts

and warmth soothes frost-

bitten fingers and hearts.


I’m the unison of a

cross and a manger that

bring victory and hope

over the darkness within.


I’m the uncommon warmth

between family members

as they pass mash potatoes

and memories at dinner.


I’m the nook in your

couch that you so easily

and gently nestle into,


You are


from the

cold chill



            -Alyssa Towns

Love Haikus


Like chocolate or

ice cream, you are the thing I

can’t get enough of.



let me tie my heart

to  string and you will see how

far your loves takes me



Pew! Pew! Pew! You have

just been shot by the latest

bullets from Cupid

-Caitlin Jordan



for every hug missed, every tear shed,

every moment you could not see. 

Poems about Loss

Coming Home

A response to “Love” by Bill Mack



counting the minutes,




Praying with every breath.

Waiting for a phone call from you,

or the awful letter from them.

8 months feels like 6 years.

Not knowing where you are

if you are safe,

or warm.

Fighting a war in myself,

while you are fighting a war for me.

Trying to be as strong as you,

telling the kids you’d be home soon,

when even I didn’t know if that was true.

Finally that day came.

I drove all the way to base,

past the other uniformed men

waiting for you to get off the plane.

Standing in a crowd of impatience –

Every man, woman and child

standing on tippy toes,

necks stretching,

eyes squinting,

breaths held

until that moment

when we each see the one,

The one that belongs to us.

Finally you came

pulled me in tight

muscles straining

head on my shoulder

tears in your eyes.

Trying to make up –

for every hug missed,

every tear shed,

every moment

you could not see.

I could not move.

but I could finally breath

knowing you, and I,

were safe in each others arms at last –

where we are supposed to be.

            - Nicole Hagen

Without Him

 In a sea of life

with her children and grandchildren on

Sunday – the Holy day.

A time devoted to God, family and rest.


I invite them to come. Through the

garden’s we walk.


Hoping to bring joy, yet sadness

consumes her.

Her – our pistil. The female who planted the roots

of our existence.


Wallowing over my fallen


His love of the land,

the family farm,

their garden that defined them.


His absence haunts her.

We walk, yet she is

unable to move



Standing still in life, the life she

grew with him –

73 years of marriage;

8 children;

29 grandchildren;

9 great-grandchildren.


I feel him as I walk,

seeking comfort in

our families faith.


I inhale

his knowledge that

respires through the



In a sea of life,

surrounded by bouquets of family,

yet crashing into waves

in an endless



She is

unable to escape

the pain.


His death consumes her.

In a world so full of oxygen,

She is left

unable to breathe.


-Justine Albaugh



 A response to “Gosh!, Do I Look as Old as All That!” by Theodor Suess Geisel

 All you bring

is a reflection of imperfection.


Nothing but a face staring back,

showing all the things I lack.


Hollow eyes from all the lies,

a person I do not recognize.


I sit…

I look…

I wonder…


Is this indeed a reflection of me?

Is this the person I want to be?

-Jenna Tobin




When Sandy Comes to Town

 This is just surreal.

Like living in a dream with no chance of waking up.

Like your head is spinning and will not stop.

Like all you want to do is call your mommy but you have no service.


This is unbelievable.

When your home is full of shattered glass and you are hiding in the bathroom.

When your front yard is full of salt water as bitter as your thoughts.

When you are holding your kids and praying God takes you instead of them.


This is imaginary.

Am I really trying to reach a shelter when I have a home?

Am I looking at the rich mingle with the poor?

Am I watching a tragedy bring my city together?


This is make-believe.

Please tell me this is not happening.

Please whisper that it is all just pretend.

Please hum a tune that makes me forget my entire universe is being swept away

by a hurricane.

- Kari Dinsmore

That Program

I’m mad.

Mad that you’re gone.

Mad that I never got to say goodbye.

Mad that you didn’t ask for help.

I’m mad that you didn’t try harder.

Mad that I didn’t try harder.

Mad that I’m here and you’re not.


I’m mad that I don’t know what to say standing in front of everyone,

Mad that I look down and see your smiling face on the program,

staring at me, like it’s my fault we are all in this dreaded place.

Mad that I can’t express our friendship in just a few words.

Mad that I can’t talk because I am crying way too hard.

Mad that I can’t think of a good memory to share

because there are just too many to choose from.

I’m mad that you’re not here to cheer me up.

I’m mad that there are a million memories

of you  going through my head and those

memories are the only ones I will have.

I’m mad that the one person I want to

talk to is you, and you’re not here.

Mad I have to go on without you.

I’m mad that you thought it

was time for you to go,

and now, I am here

without you,

struggling to

get by, mad

that I’m


-Kelsey Langlois.




First Easter after my Mother’s Death

I knew she would return to me in the spring,
not as a heron or owl or steady cardinal flame,


but as a quick flash, years in the making—
a moment I could not afford to miss.


And so I put out feeders, bulging with seed,
as always, starved for her love.


It was the year everything bloomed
too soon or not at all,


the year of extravagant finches:  I couldn’t get over
how yellow they flew.


When the calico brought gilded feathers
to the door,


I knew what I loved was truly gone.


Still, those feathers littering the steps

were not without grace,

which meant I could love the finch—

frail, hollow boned, all electric petals of light.


I could love the vivid feathers,
warm in my palm.


And I could love the calico as well,
taking and giving in equal measure,


reminding me to hold brightness and history
with a gentle touch,


to greet each new gift with an open, aching hand.

-Laura Apol





Safely Tucked Away

Poems about Reflection

Sitting at the End of the Dock

Soft, serene waves

kiss my toes

as I dangle my legs

over the edge.


Tilt my head upward

and see nothing but

blue skies and sunshine

casting down on me.


Sailboats glide

over the gleaming water

and faint laughter

is heard across the way.


In my left hand

rests a colorful glass

filled with melted

ice water.


And in my right hand

lies the newest

Danielle Steel book

The Cottage.


 Life's hidden treasure.

-Taylor Cummings


How I Make Sense of You

As summer comes to a close,

I welcome your warming colors of

reds, yellows, oranges, and browns

as I watch leaves calmly frolic in the breeze.


The wonderful scent of freshly baked

apple pie is creeping from the kitchen.

Chimney smoke fills my nose as I pass by

families trying to stay warm.


Warm apple cider dances on my taste buds

as I eagerly anticipate the

Thanksgiving feast Mom is fixing, complete with

succulent turkey and creamy mashed potatoes.


I pull my scarf tighter to escape

from your brisk wind as I

roll through your crunchy leaves,

giggling, as if I’m 5 years old again.


Because of you, I hear the frequent

sound of zippers going up and down, and up and down.

The sound of my brother chomping into

a candied apple echoes from the living room.


Ahhh, these are the beauties of the season.
And that is how I make sense of you.

-Chelsea Gose

All Things

I hold a lot of things.
All your possessions,
I keep them safe.

I hold joyous occasions;
holidays, birthdays, football Saturdays,
I’ve seen them all.

I hold your friends,
your family;
the ones you love most.

I hold memories;
The cornerstone to my foundation.
Lift them up through my walls,
radiating in every direction.
A constant flow,
keeping you warm
when you feel most alone.

I hold all things.
Most things you could pack away,
stuff and squish into a suitcase.

But not these walls.
Not these floors
you have scrubbed and scrubbed.

A time capsule
holding the contents of your life.
Waiting to be revealed
on moving day.
Then exploding.
My ashes floating through the breeze,
travelling with you.
Wherever you may go.

I am a house.
I am your home.

-Megan Johnson

Orange Juice

8 year-old me
safely tucked away
in a sea of sheets.
Their king-sized bed
swallowing me whole.
Enough room for 10 more
but somehow the perfect size
 for 2 ½ people.
Hazelnut coffee taking residency
in their labeled coffee cups:
Best Grandma in the World.
Best Grandpa in the World.
The aroma of hazelnut
masking the fruity perfume
of my own mug
of orange juice.

-Megan Johnson