Write Away

What's happening in the Seacoast for and by teens.

The daisy that healed hearts

Sofie saw her mother’s daisy lying in its little pot on the counter. The full watering can sat next to it; it’s faded flowery stickers peeling with age. Dang! In her rush to leave on the most important day of all at school, she had neglected to water the small plant. She picked up the watering can and tried to douse the daisy in water, but it was too late. The small plant bent down and it’s happy bright colors faded to a dreary shade of gray. No, no, no! When her mother got home to find the daisy lifeless she would be in the most trouble anyone could ever be in the history of the world. This was all because Sofie had died the tips of her hair pink. It all started at the hair dying salon when her mother got all worked up and she needed the daisy most. It would only work if Sofie had watered it. And now, thought Sofie with one thought leading to another, my mother may never get better again because of me. Then she started to cry. She slid down the wall, fat drops pouring out of her eyes life a waterfall. These were the tears she had been keeping back ever since her mother became ill. It had always been Sofie’s fault. Maybe her mother was better off without her. Yes that was absolutely true. So Sofie, her eyes still wet, left and hurried out into the rain only leaving behind one small trace that she had ever lived in her mother’s house. A small letter written on the largest charcoal petal from the daisy. The one her mother always turned over in her fingers when Sofie was at the store or out with friends. That one was Sofie’s petal. Each person that was special or dear to her mother had a petal and her mother would turn their petal around in her hand when she felt that person could use just a little luck. Just enough for the flowers magic to fill her with hope. Hope that maybe she may live. That she and Sofie would be able to spend more than just a few years together before… before… before she was gone.

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Haikus by Daiyao Zhang

The trunks of oak trees
Recede into small branches
Reaching for the day
Deer in the Day
Traveling in herds
They race to the forest heart
Small ones far behind


At Night
Day gives into night
And shadows are uncovered
This is where they live


Brown splattered on white
The snow banks melting in March
Ground covered in slop


The cat flicks its ears
Frolicks on the white snow banks
Nothing stops the joy
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Short Story by Solyana & Erin

It was a rock with a keyhole. The rock was shining in the sunlight, and Claire instinctively reached to her necklace. The silver key fit into the rock’s keyhole and the rock moved to the side! Claire and Erin gasped and looked at each other. It was a hole, a pitch black hole. Cautiously they climbed into the hole that lead to a tomb full of amazing and historical treasures of a pirate. They tried to dig around it but whenever they did an odd sound of shifting tiles sounded. Then something started to slowly rise out of the sand covered in rust and seaweed. It was a golden tablet. The tablet had strange writing on it, and a small door was on the side. When Claire opened the door, a shining light burst out and the girls were sucked inside.

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A Short Story by Claire Turnbull & Mica Wishengrad

…CLUNK!  A wooden treasure chest with gold coins spilling out was revealed. Pandi the panda pulled it out of the sand and put it on her beach chair. The beach goers to her left had their mouths open in awe. Pandi the panda carefully opened it up. Then she screamed. She saw a warm, golden light wrapping around her like a blanket. It encased her and she faded. The light disappeared, yet it was bright and warm. Her eyes were closed and she was swimming far, far away from her beach, from everything she knew and loved. Far, far away. Finally she landed and felt hard metal… coins below her feet. She was in the treasure chest.

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A short story by Kaylie Montgomery

    “I’m not ready!
    The calls could be heard all the way across the lawn.
The children, the kind, good children, played in the meadow with their father. The weeds soaked up the moisture from the gardens, leaving the grass as dry and as copper as a penny. Their mother sat on the rocking chair, watching them from the front porch.
    Inside, she could be happy, outside, maybe despaired.
    She was hard to predict, shuffling between one emotion and the next, never able to decide or pinpoint how she felt, no matter what the circumstance, no matter the time of day, no matter the setting of the sun, or the passing of the moon or the coming of dawn, or the windows being pelted with rain and her miserable children sulking inside by the fireplace, trying to keep warm. 
    She was never, ever clear. 
    But her children, her golden children, like gifts from God shining so brightly from the heavens, pouring their light into the unheavenly bliss that was her world, her sad world, the world that was only gay and joyful from them. Her family. 
    Although she was getting old, she was getting weak, she had them. Her husband, her children, her mother and father. They kept her rooted to the earth where she was, where she stayed. She tried, tried, not to bring up the topic of death around them. 
    If only death were easy.
    She had known, all along. She had known ever since that one December morning, when the doctor pulled her in, into a private room, where there was no time to be happy. No time to feel blessed, no time, no time. 
    The doctor, he’d been handsom. He’d had short raven-black hair with a stout beard and a sharp nose, and eyes as green as emeralds. He had spoken the words, softly, sharply, so only she could hear, although the room was quiet, empty. Her children and husband, they were in the waiting room, when the doctor had spoken:
    You are going to die.” 
    She’d been upset, and all the tears of countless nights and days, all bubbled up into one, like a bucket almost overflowed, like a stream, clogging and pooling, like a gutter, filled up with leaves and mud and rainwater. She was like a sponge, soaking it all up, and then letting it loose. 
    Once, she’d almost come close to telling them, that night in the kitchen. That one night, when her husband was gone. When he wasn’t there, wasn’t there to tell her not to do it. Not to tell them. Not to give in. 
    She’d gathered them around the table, all in their bedclothes, with mugs of hot cocoa, steaming, and an old book of stories from Grandma. She’d rescued it from the attic, and decided that now, with a story before bed, would be the way. 
    But she had held back. 
    All the effort, it had made her cry, all her tears spilling over the kitchen, her children, those lovely little blessings, cleaning up her spill. They had rushed to her aid, sat by her side. She’d fallen, fallen, fallen…
    “Ready to go inside?” Angela’s call startled her. She jumped out of her memories, from her drifting pool of a life. She almost fell off the chair, but her oldest child, her daughter, Angela, was there, helping her. 
    “That was a good game of catch,” said her husband, and her children gripped her in a tight embrace. She felt it. It was time. 
    All the countless seasons of holding it in, the secret, transparent, just behind reality, finally, she could grasp it. It was one thin strand, the strand that contained death, her death. 
    She wondered how her children would take it.
    She stood up and followed them inside. 
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Worn by Daiyao Zhang


Stop on Main Street and look up at the sign that tells you where you are even though you insist you already know.

Do you see how the sign reaches towards you as if

you have a secret to tell?

Do you see where the rebels tried to tear it down, where the snow melted and fell,

where the baseball finally dented the corners after hours of target practice?

Now look at the cracked pavement, note the maniacal grin that meets your eyes, the

pothole mouth that will never close

Do you see the balled up Wall Street Journal on the ground? Do you see the

worn words of tired ghosts, stolen children, kidnapped homes?

Can you feel the relaxed page of comics sweeping over you like your mother’s palm,

can you see the wrinkles in the op-ed page, waiting for you to smooth it out?

Can you see the same wrinkles in the mother who swept her palm over you? The

way she smoothed out the collar of your shirt with the same hands.  

Can you see the way she silently stirred the pot with your favorite soup, and spoke about her days of blissful childhood?

Do you remember the way your sister leapt into the days and swam into the nights

and stared at the moon like a newborn wolf?

Do you see the town you passed on the way to piano class, the one with houses that

had chipped paint and drooping Christmas wreaths?

And finally, look at your hands.  Do you

see the creases in your fingers, the lines on your palms?

how many years

have you worn?

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“Love Makes the World Go ‘Round” by Kaylie Montgomery


Cool, calm

They are the only peace in this world.

From the load bickering of the spokespeople

to those in quiet shops or apartments

to the faces of your loved ones

To the animals in the park,

They all love each other

And that’s what matters

If we all stopped and argued,

All through the day,

Life would not move forward.

Love would be the only way.

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“Henry Had a Secret” by Madeleine Triff

Henry had a secret,

A big one full of fun

Henry had a secret,

His mom hadn’t won

Henry had a secret,

His mom hadn’t won

Henry had a secret,

And finally spilled the beans

Henry had a secret,

And saw his brother gape

Henry had a secret,

He owned a great big ape.

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“Cool as a Cucumber” by Madeleine Triff

She was cool as a cucumber

A ripe big one too,

She was cool as a cucumber

Crisp and full of crunch,

She was cool as a cucumber

On a hot sunny afternoon,

She was cool as a cucumber

even on a rainy day.

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“Spill the Beans” by Kaylee Montgomery

Beans, rolling down a hill


A long-lost secret.

A forgotten code.

That’s what they where;

Four lonely secrets

As brown and tumbly as beans


Like the dirt we sit on.

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