The Hidden Truth
Matawan-Aberdeen Middle School
What's also special about our town is that we have one of the largest NJ Transit centers in the state. We can hop on the train and head to any surrounding town, whether it be Red Bank, Asbury Park, or even New York - we're just one ticket away from gaining new experiences! This is what makes our community so unique - we all come from different places, and we all can bring into Matawan-Aberdeen Middle School the life lessons we learn if we head out of town during the day and come back in the evening. These lessons are our truths, and they're what we celebrate here. With each new day, a new lesson unfolds, revealing truths that were hidden one day, and brought about the next.
Have a read of this year's version of our Literary Arts Magazine, written by our students here at Matawan-Aberdeen Middle School. They've revealed their truths below, drizzled with hidden messages in between the lines. Enjoy!
Our Magazine Cover
Magazine Cover Artist: Kathryn Brown, Grade 7
Enjoy the video above, as it represents all that is good in 2018-2019!
Please feel free to listen to the music that inspired us while we wrote this year!
Our Stories, Our Truths
The Ghost of 1875, Matawan
There lays a house in Cliffwood, New Jersey, also known as my home. It was built in 2002, but things always exist in areas before new buildings take over land. Before the safety of my home, there were other things. Possibly battles, possibly unknown fights. All I know is there isn’t much history online of my area, but there should be. The following writing should not be taken seriously, as it is fiction, or is it?
I need to share this with someone, before it’s too late. Before “he” returns. Before “he” realizes I’m writing this. I can’t keep silent anymore, “he” needs to be known of. “His” doings should be known, not for bad reasons, but for good, for “he” isn’t famous, but “he” is special.
This story starts around the time I moved to Cliffwood, sixteen years after it was built. At the time, I was putting my clothes in my closet. Many colors of shirts upon rows of hangers hung up onto the rails. I heard a small thumb as my shirt fell off the hanger, behind the other shirts.
“Must’ve bumped it,” I said to myself, beginning to pick it up. As soon as I picked up the shirt, I noticed something, a small door and a note, under it. I grabbed the note and read it. It read, “Use the key, open the door.” The “y” of the key was made into the arrow as I followed the writing with my eyes, and at the end was a key. I pulled the key off and studied it.
The key was small, with even smaller letters reading “L. P.” “What could L.P stand for?” I asked myself. I came up with many things that could have the initials L.P. Stuff like “Lizard Person, Locked Pet, etc.” filled my mind.
Then, another note came out the crack, “Please let me out!” it said.
I looked for the keyhole, and when I found it, shoved it in. When I turned it, the door flew open and hit me in the face.
“Ow!” I felt a gush of wind pass me as I was hit.
I decided to look in the doorway, only to find many papers and pencils.
“Don’t look at my work, ragamuffin!” the voice yelled.
I quickly turned behind me, to see a ghost. He looked like a male around the age of twenty-five. He had a black jacket, along with a tie and peach-fuzz. “What is wrong with your clothes?” he questioned. “They look...strange..” He floated out the door. “How has everything changed so fast, it was just 1875, right?”
I stared him down. The more I looked at him, the more he looked straight out of 1875. “Um...I’m afraid not, sir...it’s 140 years later actually.”
“That means…..it’s 2015?” he looked flabbergasted.
I simply nodded.
“That would make Clara….dead...the love of my life, dead?” he stared at his hand, “Along with me…” he sighed.
“Uh...I’d hate to interrupt your sudden realization that you’re dead but...I don’t even know your name yet you’re talking about your love..” I interrupted.
“Oh..sorry ragamuffin, my name is Leo, Leo Pierce.”
I stood there.
“You know it’s basic human logic that you should share your name when someone shares their name, ragamuffin,” he said.
“Sorry..I’m known as Lily...Lily Rubin.”
“Anyways, back to my dearest Clara.” He paced around my room, “You must help me find Clara!”
“I can’t! I don’t have free time!” I retorted.
Leo walked to my calendar, “It says today is August 5...and judging that you look young, it must be summer for you..so you have time.”
“I don’t,” I retorted. “My parents would be worried!”
He smirked, “Lie to them..simply tell them you were invited to hang out with a friend for a day at most.” He flew into the door and grabbed a paper and pencil. He quickly scribbled something onto the paper.
“This is where we’ll go,” Leo said holding up the paper.
“The cemetery?” I screeched.
He sighed, “Why is this so shocking? I’m a ghost, Clara’s a ghost...so she’ll be there!” Leo spun around cheerfully, “I’d call this plan brilliant!”
I simply sighed, “Fine...just let me tell a lie.”
I walked upstairs, to my parents. A few minutes later I returned, to Leo on the ground, writing, and also holding something small, balled up.
Leo held up a bag, “I packed you a lunch, since you took way too long.”
I just shook his remarks off. “So...how do we get there?” I questioned.
“Well Little Lily, we walk...isn’t that how you travel?”
I sighed, “I guess we will...” I grabbed the bag and began to walk outside. “So...which way is the cemetery?” I questioned.
“Uh...I thought you would know…” he said.
I groaned, “A search it is then...great.”
We searched many places. Near Air Trampoline, near a pizza place. Passing through heat going for miles, and luckily, we eventually made it to a cemetery. We had no idea if it contained Clara, but it was a start.
“Let’s go! I bet Clara is waiting!” Leo said cheerfully. He grabbed my hand and pulled me into the cemetery.
“Wait!” I yelled.
“Huh?” Leo said as he turned to me.
“W-What if...she isn’t waiting, Leo? What if she has moved on Leo?”
He glared at me, “What do you mean! She can’t move on! She loved me!”
I stared at him. “What I mean is what if she’s in...a place in which you cannot go? Like...what if you’re in purgatory, and meanwhile, she’s in a better place?” He stared at me, with a pained expression.
“T-That may be correct, but why should I believe a person who’s never met her! You don’t know what my dearest Clara would do!”
I growled, “Then who was she! How do you know she cared for you enough to wait around for you to show up?”
The ghost sighed, “It’s not like you would ever understand….she was too complex for your young mind to understand…”
I sat on the cement, “Well, we have time since I said I’d be gone for a day.”
He sighed, “F-Fine, I guess we do have time.”
He motioned for my lunchbox, “Give it to me for a second...”
“Why do you need it?” I questioned.
“Just hand it over!” he growled.
I handed it to him and he quickly opened it. “Here it is!” he smiled. He handed a paper over to me. The paper had a yellowish tint which could be expected considering the year in which the paper was initially used. “It’s a poem about Clara…” he said.
I began reading it. Word after word, line after line was filled with pure emotion.
“Is this what you meant by ‘complex?” I questioned.
“Y-Yes..” he said, nervously. “Could you give it back, please?”
I gave it back to him, after getting his other poems from my bag.
“Let’s get going...shall we Miss Lily?”
I got up and we began walking on the path. We passed many graves. Graves of many kinds of people. Young people, old people, kind people, and bad people. After a while, we were there. A small gravestone stood there, reading the words “RIP Clara Levine 1877 - Died of Sickness.” Surrounding her grave was a small row of lilies, that had been recently watered.
“They buried her next to me?” he said in a questioning, yet enthusiastic tone. “And look at this, they put my favorite pen by me.”
He looked at her grave, “How do we get my sweet love to come out, as a ghost, like me?”
I paused for a moment, “Perhaps we put something by her grave?”
He twirled around, “I got it!” With that, he quickly grabbed the poem he wrote about her and put in on her grave.
Right then and there, a small female appeared. The ghost was in an olive green dress, with her brown hair toppling down her shoulders.
“L-Leo?” she said, a pair of green eyes widening.
“Clara!” he yelled happily. The two ghosts flew into a hug.
“I thought I’d never see you again, Leo...”
Clara floated over to me, “Who’s this?”
Leo smiled, “This is Lily...she helped me find you!”
I simply smiled. She pulled me into a hug that was tingly and cold, “Thank you Lily..for bringing Leo to me...”
The two began to float away until I interrupted.
“Will I ever see you again?” I questioned.
Leo smiled, “Do you have any special items with you?”
I shook my head.
“Guess again!” he said grabbing my lunch box. He took out my pen and smiled, “Just come here with this pen if you want to see us, okay?”
I grabbed the pen from him and he turned to face Clara.
“Let’s get going…” They glided away as I waved goodbye.
As soon as they were gone, I grabbed my lunchbox and walked home, down the paths in which I walked with Leo. Down the paths in which I traveled so he could see his love again. During the trip home I was thinking about what caused this all. A little hanger falling, revealing a note that caused this adventure, and the friends I gained. I unlocked the door after getting home and went to my room. The small door was still open, but this time...there was something new. A small poem about a young hero. Blonde with blue eyes, about me. I went onto my bed and read it. A small smile grew onto my face and I put it into a drawer after. With that, I went to sleep...dreaming of two spirits...two that I’d never forget, even when I’m old and gray.
The Giant Oak
If people can be represented by something in nature, then perhaps it is the tree. Take the giant oak, for example.
It starts as a seed, which would be us as a baby. Then it begins to sprout into a beautiful little plant. The leaves and flowers start to bloom, which is arguably the most beautiful and enjoyable part of the tree’s life. This is comparable to any person’s childhood, and as many people say, it can be the most pure and natural time of life itself.
Then the tree grows and grows. It widens, and becomes the large tree it is today. This embodies the human experience, as in - becoming an adult. We grow and grow, whether it is in height, weight, knowledge, maturity, or experience. And as time passes, the tree may begin to shrink and whither away, comparable to the human growing old, and one day passing on. Even though our human bodies do not live forever, our presence and our memory will always last, just like the everlasting imprint of the oak tree, leaving its eternal mark - whether it be on the ground, or in someone’s heart.
The tree to human comparison shows us the value of our lives. A great oak tree, or any tree for that matter, can provide a place for someone to let out emotions. People can sit upon the roots when they are sad, or look towards the oak as a memory for when someone passes away, as a happy place for to obtain joy, or as a thinking place for seeking new ideas. The oak is a place of inspiration for some, and a place of hope for others. The great oak can change peoples’ lives, and can make or break the spirit. For every tree you see, remember that it tells a story, not just the story of itself, but maybe the story of you.
The Family Reunion
“Do we really have to have them over?” I asked my dad, hoping he could cancel plans in the last minute. They’re so... weird.”
“We’re gonna have a great time!” he said back. “Your Aunt Brenda’s family is coming over. So is Uncle Timothy’s. We’re going to have a great time, Logann!” He pushed my blue hair behind my ear, revealing a piercing that my father very much disapproved of. “Some might think you’re strange too.”
I rolled my eyes. “Whatever,” I scoffed.
He didn’t know what style was like now, still stuck in you know, back in my day. This was going to be the first Christmas after my mom left. We always had her family over before, who I could actually stand. Whenever I heard stories about my dad’s family, I always thanked the heavens above that we never saw them. But now I would have to, and I already expected it to be terrible.
The doorbell rang. Great, who’s first. My father forced me to get up and answer the door. When the door opened up, I was greeted by a middle aged woman with a stroller bearing twins. A noisy, sticky-looking toddler-aged boy ran up from behind her.
“Mommmmmyyyyy!” it - the toddler - squealed. “Mommmmyyy!”
It took all my strength not to groan aloud. I took a deep breath and asked, “Can I help you?” The “mommy” looked up at me and made a big PTA mom smile.
“Hi, sweetie! I’m your Aunt Brenda! Is your dad, Freddy, here? You know, he told me about a Logann but never about a beautiful daughter!” she chirped. I almost lost my temper with her, my hands crumpling into tight fists. “These cute little babies are Travis and Peter and my toddler, Scottwad.”
Scottwad, I thought. Who names their kid Scottwad?
“He’s in the kitchen. I don’t have a brother, I’m Logann. Crazy. Where’s the husband?” I spat out.
As soon as the words left my mouth, a man in a collared shirt and khakis tripped coming out of a blue Subaru, dented on the passenger side door. You can’t be serious, I thought, stifling back laughter. He was reading a book entitled “Dancing with Cats.”
Me, seriously thinking that he could be reading poetry, asked “What kind of poetry is that?”
“No,” he laughed in response, as if I was the ridiculous one here, “It’s a guide. To dance with your cat. Our cat, Nibbles, at home, is currently a solo dancer. I’m planning to accompany him sometime and become stars in the not-so-far future. I’m your Uncle Leslie.” He stuck his hand out.
I put my hands behind my back. “Oh, cool,” I muttered, thinking that his statement must have killed off all my brain cells. His wife entered in the house clumsily, tripping over the welcome mat. The joke-of-a-husband put his hand down and proceeded to fall into the house, not watching his step; the book must have been very captivating.
This first family that showed up was an extreme disappointment. How much worse could the families coming get? The answer was a lot, lot worse.
Another ring from the doorbell. I crossed my fingers, hoping there would be some cool cousin I had never heard of. I closed my eyes as I opened the door, trying to anticipate some good. A little giggle escaped from someone’s mouth.
A little girl in a bright pink raincoat and cowboy boots stared at me with a big grin on her face. Her face was covered in what looked like chocolate ice cream, framed by golden locks in two braids. I stooped down and asked the little girl, “Howdy, what’s your name? Where are your parents?”
Two people came skipping up our driveway, humming out of tune. The man and woman bumped into the little girl, almost knocking her over. The little girl didn’t mind though, laughing senselessly.
“Oh, Lavender! Did you already meet Logann?” the man questioned the little girl. She nodded. I coughed, trying to get their attention.
“Oh, hello Logann!” the man laughed a bit too loud. “I’m your Uncle Timothy. This is my wife, your Aunt Indigo. And this is your little cousin, Lavender.” Aunt Indigo was wearing a long white skirt and a black polo shirt with red stripes. My Uncle Timothy was wearing the same thing.
I said nothing. I just pushed the door a little open and let them walk in.
Aunt Brenda’s family was from Alaska. They flew from Juneau to Seattle, and then drove all the way from Seattle to our town in New York. They joked that they hadn’t eaten anything the whole trip because ‘they wanted to save space for dinner.’ Uncle Timothy’s family came from a long-term trip in Mongolia for two years. They were living in a yurt. Aunt Indigo decided that the flight from Mongolia to New York would be a good time for Uncle Timothy and her to go on a ‘spiritual fast.’ Neither of them had consumed anything for the past thirteen hours, except for water. However, they allowed Lavender to eat chocolate ice cream the whole trip. Lavender, by the looks of it actually, is seemingly lactose intolerant.
We sat down for dinner right away. My father prepared a beautiful dinner of mashed potatoes, green beans, and corn as side dishes. There were stewed carrots and brussel sprouts, which I surely wouldn’t touch. A golden turkey sat in the middle of the table, making my mouth water. The dessert sat at the end of the table, gingerbread cookies and chocolate cake. Those nights staying up and watching “Food Network” really paid off. I filled up my plate as other family members did.
They ate like animals.
They grabbed food with their hands from their plates, not reaching for a napkin once. There was noise, the most awful eating noises, coming from each of them. Even my father looked a little surprised. They were done in the matter of seconds. Ugh, it makes me gag just thinking about the way they ate. I ate little bites, trying to keep my food down while avoiding eye contact with any of them. Soon enough, Aunt Brenda, Uncle Leslie, and their three kids whipped out floss. Aunt Brenda turned her head up and said, “You want some? It’s bacon-flavored!” with a forced smile, I of course said no.
After dinner, the four little kids sat around singing and laughing. The adults had conversation about their lives and recent news. Oddly enough, our dinner all seemed so normal at this moment. But I sat in the corner, on my phone. I actually felt a little sad, not feeling like I was able to include myself. But who wants to be around those… freaks? I thought about it. Sure, they have their flaws. They have their little quirks. But what person doesn’t? I felt bad about judging them.
Uncle Timothy tapped me on the shoulder. Him and Aunt Brenda were smiling their faces off. They took my hand and placed two ornaments within mine. These were no ordinary ornaments though. They were so unbelievably ugly. Just sparkles and glitter tossed every which way. It was awful. I tried to appear gracious, to spare their innocent feelings.
“Open them!” Uncle Timothy laughed. “Lavender made one, and Brenda’s three boys made the other. Their feelings won’t be hurt though, when you break them open. That’s what they were made for.”
I took both and smashed them on the ground. Out of them burst two necklaces. They were beautiful. One of them was of my birthstone, a pearl. The other one had my first initial on it.
I hugged them, something I never thought would happen.
“Thank you,” I laughed, a grin on my face. I probably looked just as goofy as them. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my dad smiling to himself.
Maybe they’re a little okay, after all.
If Democracy Disappeared
A Journal Found
January 1, 2078
Every day is a new struggle, every day has a new horror, every day is harder than the last. I walk through a sea of flames; it seems that I am the only creature in existence that doesn’t act like a wild animal - well it has been many years since the “change for the better” was put in place by our “lord and saviors the Wise Men.” I miss my old life, my old body, but alas no one can choose his or her own futures anymore.
The Wise Men cast an experiment on a handful of citizens. It turned out to be...something they had not planned. Unfortunately, I was one of the handful of citizens, and now it seems I am less of myself every day. Our small, peaceful city of Waterup was closed off to “normal humans,” as we were slowly forgotten over time. This is the place where hope is gone; this is the place where chaos is a norm. this is a place tainted by cruel hands….and I miss it.
January 5, 2078
Another act was put in place today for our “own sake.” Curfews have been changed to 7:30 pm, and if you are caught after that time you will be terminated on sight. Hmm, really protecting us, eh? But this act was...horrible. This “act of peace” tore apart families; it states that any child through the ages of nine and fifteen must be handed over to the Wise men to be raised into the next army of the “New World.” My guess is that our “young, pure moldable age” would be good to mold into a suitable army. Wow. Unfortunately, with me and my sharp age of thirteen, I am supposed to leave my small shelter. The wise men need to be stopped for the good of all of the lives out there who have been hurt by them. I’ll try to write again tomorrow.
February 17, 2078
It’s been a while since I’ve seen this old leather diary. The camp is - horrible. Everything is horrible here. It seems that there are always “people” watching me, judging me for whatever I am. I need to get out of here, this place will make me go insane. I swear it. I swear.
February 19, 2078
Rough day in the academy today. We had extreme training today. I’m sore in places I didn’t know I could be sore in. I’m taking it easy for the rest of the day.
My extreme master plan in short is erm...coming along. I want to figure out something before March where the extreme training starts when the “academy” is placed in even stronger security. My only chance to escape would need to be before then and I am terrified that while the plan working could mean freedom, failure will be a fate even worse than death itself.
February 26, 2078
I’ve done it. I have a plan.
I can’t risk putting it in my journal in case unwanted eyes will see it. It may be crazy enough to work - who knows! If I’m caught though…who knows what will happen? The Wise Men are planning something big and nobody has the power to stop it. I’ve gathered all of my work and this journal in a satchel. At least if something goes wrong maybe someone will find my book. Now is the time I need to go; if everything goes right, I’ll be able to write again as early as three days from now.
July 17, 2093
I found this journal on a cove next to Saracotta. I have no idea if the original journalist is still alive but I wonder what she would have thought of the world today, a world of freedom. It saddens me that she may never have seen a world like this, but her work has been a useful source to the new resistance. We are working to continue to stop the Wise Men and make a new world that is fair and equal for everyone.
This young author’s work will not be forgotten. She has made plans, researched them for some time. Hopefully, I can continue to live in a world in which everyone, including this “Naomi,” is happy. For now, until next time.
The Meaning of Life
by Alma Matezic, Grade 6
What if our life was nothing but air, no surroundings, no one to hug, love, or hang out with. What if I walked home one day and thought that I was going to run to my room and sleep. If I thought that, I am imagining.
What if theories, truths, and surroundings were never invented? What if humanity simply, never was, or never will be?
The day humanity disappeared feels like light years ago. I was dreaming one night, and my mind went blank. My dreams had been about falling, or swimming with the pigs in the Bahamas. I woke up and realized I had just fallen off my bed, that it all wasn’t real. And then, everything went black, and when my sight was restored about ten seconds later but what felt like hours, I could not remember my dreams, or what even happened the day before today, or the day before that, and so on. It was like I was blank slate.
I walked into my living room, and I did not see my mom who usually calls me downstairs for breakfast; I didn’t hear the sizzles that bacon makes once oil on the stove starts popping. I could only view my home in shades of black and white.
When I stepped outside, I felt the cold air. I don’t know if it was actual briskness in the air, or the emptiness of the world itself. It felt as if I was going to fall into a black hole. I hopped onto a rock to sit down. I could feel everything, but the appearance of the world was eerie. I could not feel color, though. You might be wondering, color? There is no way someone can feel color! But there is. People can see and feel how the colors make a texture.
Once I hopped onto that rock, though, it teleported me to a lake. Without thinking, I dove into the lake and I started to swim. The lake gave me life for a few seconds; it gave me a moment to appreciate that I was alive. I have seen life - I was chosen. For some reason it didn’t seem as if I had liked or appreciated life before. When I got out, the world became black and white again, and I was teleported back to the rock.
I walked back inside; I wanted to live the life that I thought I remembered, the one I thought of when I was in the lake. I went back to bed, hoping that humanity would exist. But when I awoke the next morning, it did not. I cried the minute I woke up. My tears disappeared, but my little life that was supposed to be big was dying. My insides were dying, but my outsides were not.
One Day Later
I remember yesterday when I cried, and my tears would fall and then disappear. But now I am realizing it - that I am not human. I am a ghost living in the world, and my life is not what it once was, or what I thought it was. I have come to find that maybe my life as a human never existed, and I was living a dream when my life was here.
Blossom Lake: A Story about the Trail of Tears
by Daniel Yamin, Grade 6
It was summer of 1838 and the Lake family was about to start eating dinner. What happened next nobody saw coming.
Three angry pounds on the Lakes’ front wooden door startled them.
“Open up!” yelled an angry man.
Blossom Lake was scared to death. She and her two other siblings, Red Bird, who was her four-year-old brother, and Waterfall, her sister who was only seven, hid under the big wooden table.
Blossom’s father ran to the door, which he opened and said, “Hello soldier, what do you want?”
The soldier glared at him and said, “I need you to leave your home now by order of the law! Pack your bags immediately because you are going to be traveling to the the west. And no excuses!”
The family was scared to death after that. Blossom left from under the table, got a sack, and helped her mother, uncle and aunt pack their things.
“Family, stop packing!” Blossom’s father said. “We cannot leave, for this our home.”
After Blossom’s father said that, the soldier pushed him onto the ground. “You better pack up now,” he yelled.
And with that, the family packed; they were finished after some time, and sadly left the house. Blossom’s mother sneaked the food from the table into a sack. Blossom’s mother had a disease that she was born with, and it always upset Blossom when somebody talked about it. Blossom’s father always worked on the fields growing crops and hunted in the woods. Her aunt and uncle lived with Blossom’s family and were soon going to have a baby.
The family said their final goodbyes to their home and started their rough and treacherous journey, which would one day be known as The Trail of Tears.
Four days passed since the family was forced out of their home. They were sleeping in a little pen with other cherokee families. The soldiers poorly built the pen and it felt like it would fall down. That’s when a thunder and lightning storm started. The lightning struck the pen and it went on fire.
Blossom’s father was awake at the time and jumped out of bed. “Fire. Fire! Everybody, wake up!
All of the Cherokee woke up and got out of bed. They ran very quickly to the pen’s door. Blossom’s father then realized that the soldiers locked the gates so he ran and ran, and then busted the door down.
“Leave now!” he screamed.
Suddenly, Blossom’s father saw that his family was still asleep. “Wake up my loved ones. There is a fire!” he yelled.
Just then, they all woke up and ran. Father was behind his family and just when the family left, the pen the door shut right before he went to escape. He couldn’t open it up.
“Help!” he screamed.
The Lake family used all of their strength to break open the door, and they ran inside the pen quickly. Blossom looked around and then found the body of her father - dead on the ground.
“Father,” whimpered Blossom, now starting to cry. Then, her whimpers turned quickly to anger. “Father!” Blossom screamed; she was crying more than anybody in the family. Tears rolled down her face like water falling from the sky. Her father was now dead.
It was two days since the death of Blossom’s father. As saddened as she was, she knew that she would have to stop crying and moping, so as not to be next. Blossom and the rest of her family family were walking on the trail when she heard a scream.
“Haha!” she heard.
“Don’t scare me like that again, brother.”
Blossom then looked down and saw two boys who were hiking up the trail. Once she saw the boys she got scared and just ran. Blossom then saw her mother sitting on the ground.
“Mother!” Blossom yelled. Blossom then ran to her mother, who was taking her medicine when she saw Blossom running towards her. Just then a soldier started to stare at Blossom’s mother.
“You cannot have that,” the soldier yelled, and he ordered Mother to give him the medicine.
“I cannot, as I need it for my disease,” Blossom’s mother calmly told the soldier.
“No medicine. Hand it over,” he yelled furiously.
Just then, the soldier snatched the medicine from Blossom’s mother.
“Give it back!” said Blossom’s mother in anger."
Without responding, the soldier shoved Blossom’s mother really hard, and just then he realized that she was on the edge of the hill that they were walking on. Blossom’s mother began rolling down the hill, and then banged her head on a large hard rock.
Blossom saw this happening. She was scared to death. Just then she started to run to her mother and Blossom was next to her mother on her knees.
“Blo-Blo-Blossom, y-y-you are n-now in cha-cha-charge of the family. Please take care of whoever is left,” Blossom’s mother said in her last gasp of air.
Crying, Blossom ran to the soldier and screamed, “You did this to her, and for no reason!”
Blossom then ran to her family and told them what happened. Both of Blossom’s parents were gone.
Fifteen days after the tragic death of Blossom’s mother, the soldiers just finished building another non-sturdy pen for everyone to sleep in. Blossom and her family were sleeping on the bunk beds, as peacefully as they could, but in their hearts and souls they could not feel peace. Blossom’s aunt woke up after feeling a kick. She looked around and saw nobody awake. There was then another kick she felt. And another!
“Husband!” she said waking up Blossom’s uncle. “It is happening.”
“It is? Are you sure,” he whispered.
“Yes,” said Blossom’s aunt.
“Lay on the bed,” said the uncle.
She did as he said. She felt more kicks and pushes from within her stomach. She was pushing as much as she could. Blossom woke up from the sounds of muffled screams and saw her aunt. Blossom ran towards her.
“What is happening, Uncle?” Blossom asked.
“It is, the baby!” he responded.
Two hours passed, and Blossom was anxiously waiting to find out if the baby would be a girl or boy. She woke up her two siblings who were now also anxiously awaiting for the baby, too. Then, their uncle came to them.
Happily whispering to Blossom and her siblings, he said, “She is a girl.”
The children celebrated quietly. Blossom ran to see the baby. She was was in her aunt’s arms.
“She is precious,” said Blossom.
“Thank you,” said her aunt. “I am now a mother.”
Weeks have passed since the family started their journey to the west. The family claimed some land to grow their crops. They built a house to live in and Blossom even got ahold of some of her parents belongings. The family made a memorial for their parents and go there once a week. The family is living as happily as they can, and Blossom plays with her new friends everyday in the fields and has fun with her remaining family. She abides by her mother’s final words, now and forever.
Author’s Note: Nearly 6,000 people died in “The Trail of Tears” and so many Cherokee people suffered.. Even though the characters in this story aren’t real, this story is based off of some true events, and you should think of what the Cherokee people went through to get to the West, and all they sacrificed during their lives. We shall never forget them. Thank you.
by Lily Rubin, Grade 6
This is my story, and I must tell it. A story of antiques. A story of ornaments. A story of strange happenings. All you need to know is:
Heed the warnings or bare the curse.
“Why are we doing this, Amanda?” I asked my friend as we walked into an antique shop.
“Why not Elsie, it’s the season to be jolly,” Amanda said, doing jazz hands.
“But why an antique shop?” I asked, “It’s just a bunch of dirty junk from people’s garages.”
“For ornaments Elsie!”
“Oh wow...ornaments, totally not something I can’t buy anywhere else.”
“Come on, at least humor me by buying one with me!” she said, attempting to pull me inside.
“Fine...” I said, giving in to my friend’s request.
“Do we have to stay together?”
“Nope!” Amanda said as she ran off. I attempted to follow but she was too fast, so I decided to go my own way. I went down aisles and aisles of strange things that ranged from chairs to things that are best left unsaid.
Things like Furbies and creepy dolls seemed to stare at me, with their dead looking eyes. Before one of the things could get up and chase me, I reached the ornament area, where my friend was.
The area was small, very small. In fact, the area was confined to basically just a box of ornaments..
“Look at this one Elsie!” she yelled as she held one up. It was just a generic snowflake with a small bit of glitter.
“G-Great…..” I said, trying to sound polite.
“I bet you can’t find anything better!” Amanda said, suddenly making this a game.
“I won’t say I will...” I replied.
“Can you try to show some excitement Elsie! This is supposed to be fun!” she said, pushing me directly in front of the box.
“Now search!” she demanded.
I simply nodded and began digging through the box. I was stuck doing this for minutes, until I found something. The ornament I discovered ended up being an eyeball - one that looked exactly like an eyeball, complete with eyelashes that swayed in the wind, the wind being air from a small fan.
“I’m done Amanda…” I called, lifting it from the box and waiting for her to come over.
She ran over, holding a different ornament. It was just a smiley face this time. I held it up and she immediately dropped her ornament, leaving it to shatter on the ground. Amanda ran away in a panic, screaming the whole way. When I turned it so it could face me, I saw what had happened.
The sclera had become black and the iris was now split vertically, with one half green and the other red. I stared at it for a moment, and the eye looked straight at me, then blinked. I simply shrugged it off, thinking it was just because of the fact that we had no sleep. I turned the eye so it wasn’t facing me any longer and walked to the front of the store, so it could be paid for.
“Good to see that children can still enjoy antiquing!” an old man said, looking down at me.
“I’m a tee-”
“Still counts!” he said, as he grabbed the item from my hands. His eyes widened as he grabbed the eye from me. He turned it fully around a long amount of time and then gave it back.
“Y-You can have it for free! Consider it a Christmas Gift,” and then he mumbled, “...that will ruin you.”
“What was that last part?” I asked.
“Nothing of your concern young lady! Now, run along! He looked nervous, and sounded it too.
I nodded and walked outside. Amanda was there, shivering. She grabbed my hand and we ran off to our neighborhood. Soon we made it to her house, so we parted ways and then I made it to mine. I unlocked the door with our generic house key and went to my room. I quickly pushed off the junk from my desk and placed the ornament in the middle. Then, I rummaged through the drawer and grabbed a flashlight.
“Click,” it was now on, and I aimed the light towards the new eye. The black part became smaller and smaller, until it was barely visible.
Test One: Movements - Check
I put the flashlight back into the drawer and closed it. Then, I grabbed the small cup from my desk and took out a pencil. I went back to looking at the ornament and attempted to poked it. Just like any normal human eye, it blocked itself by shutting inside of an eyelid cocoon.
Test Two: Reactions - Check
“Could you not?” a voice said.
I quickly turned around and saw nothing.
“Wrong way, kid.”
I turned back around and looked back down at the eye.
“Good job, you found the disembodied voice coming from me!” the eyeball said, without moving a thing, “Except, I’m not a disembodied voice kid.”
The eyeball began to float from my desk, and once it was halfway to the ceiling, it began to glow. It became brighter and brighter until the whole room was basically white.
When the glow disappeared, a man stood in place of the eye. Black hair, pure white skin, black suit, a green and red tie, and most important of all, the same eye, but now two, as the ornament.
“I was getting sick of being dragged around, sorry if that was a shock, kid,” he said, helping me up.
“W-Who are you?” I stammered.
“You may call me, Arian...or your boss, and as your boss, I shall call you New Hire.”
“What? I don’t recall applying for a job.”
“Pay attention to the deals you make, New Hire,” he said, smiling, “I mean, didn’t you listen to that old man?”
I thought for a few seconds.
What did he say? WHAT DID HE SAY?
I couldn’t remember anything out of the ordinary, so I gave up.
“No...I do not,” I replied to Arian.
“Well New Hire, I do not have time to explain! You’re already late for your first day.”
He’d quickly snap his fingers and my outfit changed from a T-shirt and pants to a full on suit. When I looked in front of me, a portal had appeared and he was tapping his foot impatiently.
“Enter the portal, please.”
I cannot finish this. My “boss” or as you know him, Arian said break time was over. I’ll quickly recap what happens after his words. In short, I got shoved into the portal and work simply started. That’s where it ends. No way to escape or get back to my world. All I can leave behind for my previous world now is a warning. Heed the warning or bare the curse.
When Times Passed
by Alma Matezic, Grade 6
Walking along my school yard, you know, I realized something super cool and something people might consider, “special.” I noticed an indent in the ground, a deep one too. It had no grass, as bare as skin, and it was of a rocky brown color.
I had seen a time capsule before, but I never knew there was one at my school. I wonder what might be in it.
Maybe there are old toys, batteries, cards, games - empty cans of soup? And maybe even old pictures! Welp, I'm on a journey to find out, and you’re invited to come with me!
So, first we have to calculate how long ago it was from. I mean, it looks like it’s from 1993, and I am assuming stuff was different then - different foods, toys, a lot of things. So how long ago was this? Well, if we do the math...twenty-, twenty-six years old! Wow!
So lets say maybe, LeBron James cards or TMNT (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) might be in there. We’ll get shovels from the janitor’s office, and start to dig...a lot, and finally as we do this, we hit this hard object. Hit, hit….hit….hit, until we sink down a little bit.
“Oof!” I yell.
“Are you okay? Are you hurt?” yells a voice.
I don’t know its owner, but I know I heard it. Do you recognize it?
“Ouch, that hurt!” shouts the voice.
I hear it again, and this time, it’s louder. What is that?
Bending down on our bare knees, we look deep into the hole. And the most unexpected thing happens.
I personally am so scared that my head is becoming red and warm, and I start shaking so much, my backpack falls off. How are you just standing there, so still?
The voice is that of a lady.
How can this be possible? The lady is old, and I banged her head when we dug into the first!
“Sorry, I am really sorry!” I say, and I hope that she understands the fact that I am just a kid, being curious.
I mean, this isn’t anything that I imagined or pictured, but, I mean, it is really cool. I wonder how this lady spent her time down there with no food or water. I ask the lady to explain her story, and she tells me that she she brought packs of goldfish and some bottles of water so she could stay hydrated and not go hungry. She also tells me that when she put herself in there, she did not do it for just for fun; she did it because she wanted people one day to open it up and find a lady from the nineties! And the last thing she tells me is that when she dug up the hole to stay in there, she originally was trying to borrow the time capsule for herself, but instead she just stayed. Surprising, huh!
I lend the lady a hand. You’re looking at me like I shouldn’t, but I am doing it anyway.
She takes mine and I tug her out. Together, including you, we pull out all of the items that are stuck in the ground, inside of the time capsule. They are brown, and smelly, and old. We wash them with the hose that was against the school wall, and I take some baggies out of my backpack so that we can put the items in the bags. We let them dry out and we keep the baggies open.
I want to give this lady a high five but, she before we knew it, she was gone! We take every, single item from the capsule with us to care for until Monday. On Monday, we will go to school and show Principal Huggins the items we found in the time capsule, we’ll tell him about the lady we found. Hopefully, he believes us, but then again, I am sure he has heard crazier stories before.
Gilbert and the Internet People
by Gabrielle Alli, Grade 7
My name is Gilbert Schuyler and I think I am going to die. But that’s just the way I am. I have thanatophobia and this causes me to have extreme anxiety about dying. One thing that has always helped me through my anxiety, though, is watching Bob Ross. I even grew my hair out to look similar to his. Although Bob’s painting episodes help, I had never gotten actual professional help for my fear. And I was going to start my journey to recovery last Thursday, October 28th. Nothing has been the same since then.
After looking through a thousand therapists, I decided on a Dr. Walter Berkins. He seems to produce results in his patients, leaving them happy and relieved. I hoped for the same effects. However, nothing made me happy or relieved in my visit to Dr. Berkins. Let me tell you the whole experience.
First, I walked through the door to see a huge skull. A human skull; real or fake, it made me feel absolutely sick to my stomach. But I had to be brave. There was no other way to make it through this already treacherous experience. I took a seat in the waiting room, decorated with fake blood splatters. A fake mummy occupied one of the seats. I couldn’t even look at it without feeling short of breath, and my mind kept falling back to the thought of that skull. I wondered, will my corpse look like that once it decays? Oh, I couldn’t bear the thought. The worst part was, I could never be sure when I would die. I could drop right then and there, and never open my eyes again. I was starting to sweat, my heart started to race.
“Mr. Gilbert Schuyler! Where are you?” a voice boomed into the waiting room. My thoughts stopped.
“Um, here,” I muttered.
“Dr. Berkins is ready for you now.” The man gave a menacing look, turned, and went back to where he came from.
I wiped the sweat off of my forehead and entered the room. The walls were a terrible shade of brown, and a dimly lit lamp sat in the corner. Dr. Berkins’ desk was incredibly messy, with papers, fast food wrappers, and Post-its scattered everywhere. A tall man stood before me. He was so tall that the seven foot high ceilings almost brushed against his brown, slicked-back hair. But still, his face was kind and he squinted at me through his glasses. He neared me, coming very, very close to my face. I could feel his breathing and wished he would stop with all my heart.
“Okay,” he muttered, three times in a row, in fact. “Green chameleon, restless log, mumbled music,” he said to himself.
I stared at him blankly. Someone just a bit more insane than me was going to fix my problems? No way. I should have just made up a silly excuse and left at this point, but I stayed. I needed help, urgently. Maybe this was the only way to deal with tomfoolery in order to be unafraid and normal.
He sat down and opened a drawer. Pulling out a sandwich with avocado, pickles, turkey, cheese, and tomato, he smiled at me. “Have to get lunch in before… well, you know,” Berkins said. He took a large bite, swallowed, coughed a bit, and then swallowed. “Take a seat, Gilly.” He plopped the sandwich back into the drawer.
“Gilbert,” I corrected him. But at this point, I wasn’t sure if I wanted him to know my name.
“So, Gil-meister, what have you come to me for?” he snapped his fingers and pointed at me. His posture relaxed and he didn’t seem as tall as before. Resting his feet on his desk, his eyes locked with mine.
I looked at the ceiling to avoid eye contact. “I have thanatophobia. I’m so afraid of dying that I can’t function. I need someone to help me,” I explained, nervously. “And it’s Gilbert.”
“Boo!” Berkins yelled from behind me.
I jumped from my seat, nearly having a heart attack.
“Yabba-dabba-doo, I got you! About your Thanos-a-phobia, none of us like dying. But you just gotta do it sometimes. So breathe and think, it’s not a big deal, bro.”
His dismissiveness annoyed me. I was losing patience, and very quickly as well.
“You don’t think I’ve tried that? I came here for you to teach me actual coping skills, not for you to tell me to ‘breathe, bro.’ And frankly, I’m beginning to question if those good reviews on your website are real.”
His face dropped. He opened a cabinet sitting above him. Another skull fell out, along with more fast food wrappers. The skull scared me out of my mind, and I couldn’t stand being there any longer. I started to turn in my seat when he pulled out a picture. It was of an old man with white hair, wearing a top hat and holding a cane. He was wearing a buttoned-up coat under another jacket.
“This is my daddy,” Dr. Berkins said, again straying from the issue at hand. “He’s really cool.”
“I don’t care about your daddy - I mean, father!” I yelled. “I want a refund for this waste of my time!”
Suddenly, a man popped out of the mysterious door in Dr. Berkins’ office.
“Daddy!” Dr. Berkins yelled.
The man, identical to the one in the photo, shouted, “You shall not leave! My boy here must stay in business. If you say but a negative word about him in a review, I will find you!”
“You don’t even know my address!” I screamed.
He pulled out a piece of paper, displaying my address clearly; he gave a threatening look as well. I left silently, without saying a word. My name is Gilbert Schuyler, and I still think I am going to die.
A Letter Found
by Shravani Vedagiri, Grade 7
I turned left on Glassworks Boulevard, excited that we were moving into a new home. Based on the pictures that my dad had taken, the place looked beautiful, stunning. I walked into the lobby, and sat on the leather sofa. I was waiting for a half an hour, and I was bored to death. I decided to walk around. That’s when I found a tiny little note tucked into the corner of the building. I pulled it out with a little effort, and opened it up. It was on old, rusty piece of paper that seemed like it was there for a hundred years.
To My Dear Friend,
I wrote to you because I wanted to see how life is going. I hope that you are still a Patriot, and your business is going well. I can’t wait for this war to be over! So many people are losing their lives fighting the Rebels here in New Jersey. Mother and I are mourning for them. We miss them all so very much so. And with this, I hope your family is well.
There is no trade going on here, henceforth our business sales are plummeting. I wish you were here because I know you would try to comfort me. Well, best of luck, and I will continue to pray for your family with mine. I hope to see you in the future.
This stunned me. The letter - from The Revolutionary War? This town was around for that long? This sent me into deep thought for the next hour. I wondered why I hadn’t known this before. I decided to research this on my computer. Who is Thomas Hunn, and what did he experience?
I learned a lot about my own town that I hadn’t known before. I wonder, what else lies hidden? I searched up Thomas Hunn’s name only to find out he was involved with the Monmouth County Militia. Is this for real?
Looks like tonight is going to be a late night of learning!
Author’s Note: please read this link for more information: http://www.revolutionarywarnewjersey.com/new_jersey_revolutionary_war_sites/towns/matawan_nj_revolutionary_war_sites.htm
Life from the Perspective of a Snowflake
by Alma Matezic, Grade 6
I start from a cloud, and fall to the ground.
I know I might be useless to the humans out in that world, but seriously! I'm more than just a white fluff that falls from the sky when the clouds precipitate and stuff, but - I can be good! I promise!
One day in the month of January, I started off in the clouds way up high in the sky, but then I fell out! Argh! It kind of hurt at first but then I got used to it because it happens to me all the time! So I fell down and landed, right in this person’s backyard and I saw this humongous thing that I apparently was bouncing on! I bounded on, and bounced, and then I bounced off, and I started melting. Oh my gosh, I hate this part! I didn’t want to go through this process of, melting, again. Falling from the sky, to the floor, and melting down into water, and then doing it again and again - it’s exhausting!
Why would anyone want to go through this process, multiple times! It’s the worst experience you could ever think of, worse than shoveling groups of me away just to get out of your driveway! Even though you people are humans, and you don’t know anything about this stuff actually, I think if you were a snowflake, you’d never make it. If you were ever a snowflake, here’s what I’d say - good luck!
I made a poem to tell all my snowflake friends:
I start from a cloud, fall to the ground,
I melt and restart, the horror of my life-
I wish we could all stay alive.
If you went through,
The trauma we go through,
We would all be entirely equal.
This poem inspires all of my friends in the snowflake world, but not the humans, I guess. Did you know that you can actually hear my poem every time I fall? I don’t think you’re interested in it though, because no person has ever complimented me on it, and I have recited it many times!
Anyway, I'm in the thick of this blizzard. As I fly down, all my other snowflake friends hit me and I hit them back, usually accidentally, and I injure them and feel so bad for doing so! When the winds die down, I apologize because I do not want my friends to be mad at my, and I certainly don’t want to lose them! Oh well. They hug me and start to tell me about their lives as snowflakes, as well.
Snowella tells me about the time she landed on the windshield of a car and was smeared off by a wiper. The nerve!
In case you were wondering, snowflakes don’t have age; we all think “age is just a number” that we all use to describe ourselves aging, and yearing! This is my story - it’s short and sweet, but it’s all mine, and it can never be yours. Until next time!
by Lily Rubin, Grade 6
We were all in the clouds, getting heavier and heavier as another joined us. All of us would become snowflakes, or so we hoped. I mean, it was a relatively cold day for us...a nice day for ice. Instead of being rain that would just fall down and become a useless puddle, we would become a bundle of snowflakes, and we would linger around for a while. We all awaited the minute it would start to fall. As snowflakes, we consider it a new life...one where kids would play with us while their parents would groan and moan. We would have enemies and friends, and I was the most excited.
I could not wait for friends! I could not wait for enemies! Of course, I already did have friends and I already did have enemies, but we barely talk. Most of us just sit around in the clouds and sing a song that we all knew by heart, and it goes like this:
Freezing time, what a bore.
Oh, we wish it was a pour.
Just drop us when it is warm,
So we could all just become a water swarm.
Of course, I have no idea what any of those words really mean because it’s not like precipitation has a school. We just kind of come into existence with words that we just kind of figure go into a sentence. Maybe those words mean that it’s some sort of fun time for us that we’re awaiting! I cannot wait to fall!
I’m sick of this place. All we do is sit here, waiting to fall. Why do we even need to fall? All that happens when we do is death! All that happens is that we fall, stay awhile and then melt and die. Why would we want to die? Heck, what even is death? I seriously need a dictionary.
Oh, and another thing to stop whoever is reading this from becoming precipitation. All the other snowflakes in my area keep singing this awful song, with stupid lyrics and off-key notes!
All I remember from it is the lyrics, which go as follows:
No more waiting!
Time to start creating!
We will make men of snow!
Or perhaps a white crow!
What even is a man of snow and a white crow? Is it some sort of ritual where we form a human and become a living being? I hope not, being stuck with these crazy snowflakes...yeah no. I refuse to become a single being with them! Please let me be rain, so I can just go into the sewers! I bet the rats are cool. Who cares if they have rabies? It won’t affect me.
I wonder how humans react to us falling down. Do they detest the beauty we bring? Do they play in what we become? Do they find ways to torment us for an eternity by shoving us in a freezer to never be seen again? Oh, maybe they try and make us into cold versions of themselves! That would always be cool! Oh, maybe we’ll be sentient! Great...more questions! I might as well make a list of them. It might save me the trouble!
How do we come into existence?
Why do we know so many complex words upon becoming what we are?
Are we even sentient?
Do humans want to kill us?
Oh well, not like I’ll even find the answers. Perhaps I will, depending on what happens if we fall. Speaking of which, what does happen when we fall? Oh well, I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.
I’ve been involved in over one hundred cycles. Each one more excruciating than the last.
At first, I was just Mrs. Happy Little Jingles, twenty-four seven, until the day we fell. But now, I’m the one who has become cynical. Lyrics about what snowflakes do when they fall....I must say, it is laughable at what they come up with. Small tunes about men of snow, angels made from them, children playing around, grownups picking them up. Was I this annoying during the earlier cycles? I hope not. Oh well, I think I have time before I fall, so I guess I’ll recite one of their pathetic songs:
Time to fall!
Cannot wait to see it all!
See it all!
Why must they scream it? If they’re going to sing then at least make it pleasant - I’d love that! A sweet lullaby to fall asleep to - sounds great! Just sleep while you await your impending death! Maybe I’ll work on one during the next cycle? Who knows...maybe I’ll just sleep. Oh gosh, I ran out of time rambling to you! It’s time to fall...great! Oh, maybe they won’t enlist me to be precipitation again for a while. Until next time, because you’ll most likely find me again...hopefully while I’m asleep.
by Alma Matezic, Grade 6
Melissa does many weird things. She likes to hug trees, walk down gingerbread streets, and collect many items.
“Melissa is hugging a tree again! I swear!” I shouted. I’m Libby, and I am two years older than my sister, Melissa, who is a real bizarre-o if you ask me.
As mom walks towards the dusty window, she finds Melissa, of course, hugging the white tree outside all covered in snow.
“Melissa, get inside! It’s freezing out there, and we have to go to the Goodwill!” I don’t know why she doesn’t do more to stop Melissa, before she seriously gets warped.
Mom has a major obsession with finding random things. We arrive to the Goodwill, and mom has crazy ideas again. Maybe that’s why she never stops Melissa; maybe they’re kind of the same.
Mom finds this object, a literary object - a book! “Dancing with Cats,” it’s called. She also finds a hideous ornament, with a note stuck on the back that says, “I HAVE BEEN THROUGH MUCH! HANG ME UP OR I WILL CLONE MYSELF INSIDE OF YOUR REFRIGERATOR AND YOUR TOILET!”
I can’t take this place. I walk out of the store, and my mom and Melissa follow me; I am shaking. Melissa was actually holding my hand and not a tree, and as we step with our mint boots onto the ice, I slip.
“Ow!” I scream.
My mom picks me up, but as she does this, I turn into a gingerbread man, and my mom turns into gum drops. I look around and there I find my sister Melissa hugging trees and my house. My gingerbread house. I walk inside and the ornaments are in my toilet. I run to the fridge, and it’s in there too. I was so scared, spooked, and shocked.
I look up and my mom isn’t there. I see the ornament and it’s screaming out, “bacon-flavored floss!” on repeat. What does that even mean?
The note from the ornament appears suddenly on my forehead like magic, and I realize I have to follow all rules of the note, the very note that I ignored earlier.
I pull the note off, and the words change before my eyes: “IF YOU WANT YOUR HOUSE, FAMILY, AND LIFE BACK, TELL MELISSA TO STOP HUGGING TREES WHEN IT’S SO COLD OUT! ALSO, THINGS CAN GET A BIT MORE TRICKY.”
What could this mean? I begin sweating out all of the water I had drank earlier in the day.
The note changed again: IT CAN BE SCARY. IF YOU WANT YOUR LIFE BACK, THEN GO AND TRY TO MAKE ALL BAD THINGS DISAPPEAR.
I try to listen to the ornament, because this altered universe is what I might get stuck in if I risk not listening. But how do I make everything bad disappear? I try to do what the ornament says, but the thing is, not everything can be done by myself! That’s the crazy thing about it!
But maybe this is what I am supposed to realize? That not all things can be fixed alone, and that maybe I should be grateful for all the weird things people do, because life as it is right now - in this altered universe - is way worse than what I had before.
And suddenly, as if by magic, I was back at the Goodwill. My mom picks up that same ornament with the sticky note, and I encourage her to buy it. I tell Melissa to take a break and maybe play outside, maybe even with the trees. We can all use some bizarre-o in our lives. Without it, what is life, really?
A Symbol of Life: The Egg
by Mrs. Fricchione's Class
"The eighth grade Italian students celebrated Autism Awareness Month. The egg is a symbol of life to the Italians. We all fit in!"
National Poetry Month Submissions
by Mrs. Fricchione's Class
"Seventh graders worked on Acrostic poems using descriptive adjectives in recognition of the month of April being National Poetry Month."
Thank you for reading our writing!
- Gabrielle Alli, Grade 7
- Peyton Kanaszka, Grade 6
- Alma Matezic, Grade 6
- Lily Rubin, Grade 6
- Shravani Vedagiri, Grade 7
- Daniel Yamin, Grade 6