National Poetry Month Weigh in

April 30, 2020 /

As National Poetry Month comes to a close, read below submissions from We ‘Ced youth.


If you could write a poem to COVID, what would you want to tell it? 


Dear COVID-19, 

You don’t know me 

But right now everyone knows you 

You’re infamously the talk of the globe

As we isolate at home

We’re told that we are not alone

But the division you caused says otherwise

I don’t even want to go outside

You can see fear in everybody’s eyes since that’s the only feature you see

This is the “new normal” for us

This is how my brother and sister are growing up

I want my life back

I can’t go to my boyfriend’s house their ostracization is painful and raw 

Given to me by a fear you caused

We can’t go to the mall like we used to 

This has been the longest I’ve been without my auntie 

I never was a hugger but I’d give anything for us to be together

I’m Class of 2020 but there’s no cap and gown for me 

If we’re lucky maybe a belated ceremony 

My whole life is online now 

School, work, friends, everything

You are detrimental for my socialization 

I have siblings I can’t see 

Family who misses me 

A life I can’t lead 

Drive I’m losing

And you still won’t leave 

You make it hard to function 

And way too easy to think

Kids my age can’t take it 

Suicide to escape this combat rink 

We’re too embarrassed to admit it but we’re scared

I’m scared of what you’re doing to me and my family

What do you do when your a child seeing your dad terrified

When you see pain mother in your mother’s eyes

You aren’t killing my body 

 But you’re eroding away what’s inside

With much hate, 

A Teen of 2020

– Stephanie Gurtel, 17



It’s Hard..

Our Country is falling apart

 Shifting history into a crumpling heart..

Bringing pain & unforgettable misery

While we tumble in the rumbling dark..

Who knew..

Another Disaster

Tearing through the plaster

Like some bumbling bastard..

Perceived like the beauty of a corsage

 Into this twisted mirage

Revealing the facade

Underneath this infectious barrage  

It’s Hard

Distracted with tragedy

Surrounded by never-ending catastrophe 

We forget..

A simple smile

Making the world worthwhile..

As another beautiful day passes

I stare out my window..

And I whisper Inwardly to the masses.

“Change…Change is Pain”

– Steven Rice, 17


The silver lining in COVID-19

To dance in the mirror

The eight year old

Dreaming of corsages 

Stunning bright red dresses

Will sigh

She will cry

But habits 

Create gratitude

Embrace the love you feel 

For him

It seems

The world is barricading

Our country, 


He’s not forever 

But he will be today

My first phone call 

List my recents

Every day

Grocery shopping

Is easy

Healthy is arbitrary 

But the foods

That nourish my body

Are still on the shelves

Possessing mature tastes 

Treats me so well

My body’s test of time

My mind

The goals that I can find

Learning my culture’s language


The three years

Of Spanish 

I miss, 

And sign language for 

The friendship I predict

Decades down the line 

Sweating out depression


I paint for passions

Strength in mind, body, and soul

I never intended to ration

For this pandemic

But the greatest things of all

Is the humanity 

I find in


Joyous greetings

Across grave sidewalk

Amidst my morning walks

I used to trudge home 

My peripheral consisting

Of smelly gasoline


Curses at mundane catcalling

The homes glowing yellow

On the streets

That spoke frightening

Remind me 

Of game nights

Monopoly and Boggle on Fridays

Blue light pixelating 


People I find myself bonding with

People I used for practice, 

Long distance training

Intertwining our empathy

It’s easy for a high school senior

To get angry 

At the pandemic

Rushing out the world

And the months 

I’m meant to be celebrating


The world

Has a resilient reality

Meant for humanity

I just need to own it

And join a long awaited community

Society breaking history

 – Rachel Livinal, 18


I’m a senior now

in High School

 I’ve worked more than 12 years to get to this point

I was afraid that I might not be able to walk the stage

I have to leave everything before I’m even done

I was thinking of the memories

How fast it all has happened 

I would always think about the day 

Where I would walk the stage with my peers

You took everything and put it to an end 

All the things I thought had me ready to keep going 

I’ll have to say goodbye to the memories 

They are all gone 

The sports have been canceled 

Saved up all my money 

Not one expense paid on prom, grad nite 

You took all my excitement 

From my last year of High School 

My expectations are all gone 

It’s all about you now 

Seniors having high anxiety 

Not being able to see their family from the stage

You had no invitation 

But you are here 

Class of 2020 would want you gone

Karina Vivas, 18 


A city that never sleeps




In a city that never sleeps something is always happening

The noise never quiets down

There’s a comfort in that

The pulsating heart of people that never ceases beating reminds us that we’re still alive

The city that never sleeps has not been like that recently

The heartbeat has slowed

The noises not as loud

It’s disorienting, the quietness if it all

People have to stay indoors for the betterment of others

While the heart beat reminded us that we’re alive, the stillness has reminded us that we’re kind

We don’t want anyone else to get hurt

The heartbeat is still there

Slower, quieter, but still beating

And when the city wakes up again, it’ll be louder than ever before

 – Hannah Sanchez


(the following poem is not a response to the prompt)

Love Me or Love Me Not

You held me in strong arms with loose wrists

With the hope of never letting go

We just slipped 

Cold water on harsh cracked tile

Neither of us looking out for the wet floor sign

And now i’m wondering what we could have been

If none of us were told what we couldn’t be 

I was built for you, manufactured hands that fit like melted wax covering yours – warm and still, wax creating the mold that shouldn’t have broken us 

Woven, my eyes to draw you in the sketch pad of my mind and only you

The way I catch you looking

I can feel it in my aura that yours is trying to hold hands with mine 

I turn to find your blue eyes meet with my grey ones 

The way I catch you looking

Or maybe you caught me 

Sifting through your movement wondering if I can read your expressions like a book I forgot I read

Wondering if you’d still look at me with those eyes, blue like the sea after a storm

To have me fit back into your mold, before you break for someone else 

Someone who wouldn’t see you like I did, who wouldn’t see that your insecurities are the reason I believe in the word perfect

That someone would never come to know all those years ago, it was just a simple crush

A crush and crumble of a love letter written in a forbidden language we both still know how to read 

And now i’m wanting a taste 

A lingering, soul filling, anticipating feeling of turning your pages to the next chapter

To know of you still love me or love me not

If the characters in the story would end up like how we could 

Because i’ve picked all of the pedals off of the flowers in the garden 

And i’m simply dying to know 

If you still love me or love me not

– Lyrical Anne, 18

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