YWP: Lost in a Forest of Metaphors

Age 15, Chelsea
Monday, February 19, 2018

Young Writers Project is an independent nonprofit based in Burlington that engages middle and high school students from anywhere in the world to write, to express themselves with confidence and clarity, and to connect with authentic audiences. YWP publishes local writing in newspapers; through YWP’s website, youngwritersproject.org, and monthly digital magazine, The Voice; before live audiences; and with other media partners, including vtdigger.org and vpr.net. YWP is supported by this newspaper and foundations, businesses and individuals who recognize the power and value of writing.

This week’s prompts: Forest. Write a poem using a forest as a metaphor for either confusion or indecision; and general writing.

Endless forest

I go into the forest.

The forest thickens,

thickens all around.

Around me animals hurry,

hurry in every direction.

Every direction is blocked,

blocked with vines and branches.

Branches stick out,

out of many trees.

Trees are endlessly tall,

tall yet rising higher,

higher till the sky is gone,

gone from my view.

My view is closing,

closing the deeper I go.

I go into the forest.

Read the complete poem at youngwritersproject.org/node/20680.


In the dark places where they roam,

the gentle breeze knows I’m alone.

Strange creatures crawl in the night,

some tiny, tall, or taking flight.

I’m left in these tangled, wrestling vines,

steering me from my straight-walking lines.

I shall be here until my death —

it feels like I’m caught in a knotted net.

Some people say it’s left, then right,

but here I’m left with no more fight.

I look back on a moment far from here,

when I was in a place with no such fear.

The vines and roots stayed clear of my road,

for I was near my humble abode.

The trees didn’t spin; I could see my home,

and most of all, I wasn’t alone.

Fire rose from the pit and lit up the world…

but now I sit here withered and curled.

Give me the light; give me my path!

Give me everything that I once had!

Because now I sit here all alone,

and once again, there’s no sight of home.

Read the complete poem at youngwritersproject.org/node/20603.

Seaside mornings

The waves curl over your salted feet,

tickling and rushing and squirming.

It pulls the sand from underneath,

like the tablecloth torn out

from beneath the last wine glass

on the kitchen table.

And as it teeters on lacquered wood,

so do you on the rippled sheets of sand.

Generations of crustaceans swarm back

into the heaving smile of the next wave,

lurching. You lurch, off balance

in the glinting rays of the sun,

before the oncoming assault of the next

white, foam-lipped wave can accost you,

still reeling from the last.

Don’t fall!

Eyes wide, smiling bright,

hair flung back and arms up in the sea spray.

You embrace the colossal wall of

salty green, refreshing in its reincarnation.

It greets you, once more, with a playful shove.

Good morning, my dearest friend.

It’s nice to see you again.

Read the complete poem at youngwritersproject.org/node/20035.