Young Writers Project

Weekly On VPR.net

VPR partners with Young Writers Project to present selections of the work of young writers, photographers and artists in Vermont.
 

Each week, VPR features a submission - an essay, poem, fiction of nonfiction - accompanied by a photo or illustration from the Young Writers Project.

The Young Writers Project provides VPR's audience another avenue to hear and read selections from Vermont's young writers. The thoughts and ideas expressed here are the writers' own and do not necessarily reflect those of Vermont Public Radio.

The collaboration is organized by Susan Reid of Young Writers Project and Vermont Public Radio.

Young Writers Project: A Mother's Love

May 4, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

Abby Simmons, a high school junior from St. Albans, writes about the incredible power of a mother’s love.

She loves like water
Beneath our feet
Above our heads
Coursing through our bodies.
Ever present.

Her love shines
Like the warm sun above,
Touching all those
On this side of the earth.
Radiant.

In her soul,
Lies an endless mine
Full of passion
That will never run out.

Courtesy, Susan Reid

Sophia Cannizzaro, 17, of West Glover, writes about the importance of achieving balance and how tricky it can be to get there.

Young Writers Project: We Don't Care

Apr 21, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

This week's young writer, Lonna Neidig, a junior at Bellows Free Academy in St. Albans, says she has always wanted to write something “comparing how we process tragedies."

Young Writers Project: 'Happy Ballerina'

Apr 14, 2017
Courtesy, Alexandra Contreras-Montesano

she dances her way out of everything/soaring/arms curled cruelly around her head.
passe/develope/grande jete/and she's off/
i was a fool to think she could keep her eyes away from the mirror.
she glances/face glistening at her reflection/punctuating every tondu with a gaze.
i tell her to be happy and she laughs/her feet bleeding as she jumps again.
'i am happy' she replies/casting a longing look at the stage.

Geoff Gevalt

He had soft brown eyes and a forgiving soul.
He had a hug that consumed me in warmth.
He had lips that curled up at the ends and dimples when he laughed.

Courtesy of Lia Chien

I dare not mention your name,
Not because you hold any fame
But because I am ashamed.

Young Writers Project: 'A Little Girl'

Mar 24, 2017
Lia Chien

Iris Robert, 13, of South Burlington is in 7th grade. She writes about the dreams of a little girl who believes she can fly, and then, in crashing, she picks herself up and learns something about herself – about recovery and her own strength.

Young Writers Project: 'Chase For Equality'

Mar 17, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

When I was younger, I thought that I lived in a world where everyone got along and everyone was treated equally. 
I would read books about the struggles of those fighting for their rights, and thought that it was over now. 
That they won. 

Young Writers Project: 'Playing At Higher Ground'

Mar 10, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

I sat in my chair, shaking with nervousness and excitement. I was about to play my fiddle at Higher Ground Music Center in South Burlington.

Young Writers Project: 'What We Love About You'

Mar 3, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

We’d started talking about hands.

Anna told you that you have

beautiful hands.

You protested,

saying that they were too

old, wrinkly and twisted

to be beautiful.

Anna insisted you, and your hands,

are beautiful.

Uncle John saw the problem:

You didn’t see your worth.

So he suggested we go in

a circle and say

what we love about you.

Anna said she loves your stories.

I said I love your soft, lovable,

huggable personality.

Mom said she loves your strength,

Young Writers Project: 'My Big, Beautiful Bubble'

Feb 24, 2017
Liana Lansigan, a seventh grade student from Hanover, NH, writes about realizing that life isn't always fair and that there is discrimination in the world, including against her family because of their Japanese heritage.
Courtesy, Susan Reid

I live in a bubble

Young Writers Project: 'A Chance'

Feb 17, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

We have been told to give Trump a chance.
We have been to told not to judge based on the past.
We have been told to wait before we judge.
We have been told, "You're just holding a grudge."

Well, I have given him a chance.
And I have tried to ignore the past.
And he has responded with banning religions.
He has responded by ignoring the court's decision.

Young Writers Project: 'Beautiful Person'

Feb 10, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

I hate being a deep thinker, but at the same time it’s a blessing. Sometimes I care so much for people. This can go anywhere from a family member, close friend, to even somebody I don’t talk to regularly. Today, I’m going to talk about someone that I don’t talk to regularly, someone I don't know very well. When you’re in school you’re surrounded by tons of people, right? You have to admit that there are some people that will always stick out to you, no matter what. Sometimes you don’t even understand why, they just do.

Young Writers Project: 'Parts Of War'

Feb 3, 2017
Alison Redlich Photography

i.  Fear

1492

Finding people surprised them.

Spanish ships and the promise of gold had brought them here.

“They don’t look like us,”

their guns whispered as they spit bullets.

“They don’t act like us,”

their blood sang as it rushed to their heads.

Courtesy, Emily Smyth

As I walk into the hospital,
I breathe in the scent of disinfectant
and stale air,

Young Writers Project: You-words

Jan 20, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

Your eyes were always my favorite.
Bright stars on the dark background of your chocolatey, tousled hair.
Warm and inviting they drew me to you
     to sit with you
wrapped in a blanket
     by the fire.
Sipping something warm,
     something brown, and dark from the mug tucked between our hands.
It was dark and brown but never as dark as your tousled hair or your winter hat,
     a shade of deepest forest green – another earthly element in the dark backdrop from which your celestial eyes shone.

Young Writers Project: The Making Of Konrad

Jan 13, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

Mrs. Perkins stormed into the business meeting, stumbling over her high heels, her hair looking like it had gone through a tornado. Her face was beet red from anger and her eyes had a look of slight insanity to them.

Situations like this, except with different people, had happened so many times that Mr. Kiln instantly knew why she was barging in on his very important meeting.

"I quit!" Mrs. Perkins bellowed.

Some of the employees closer to the door yelped and began to scoot away in their chairs.

Young Writers Project: Mi Nombre

Jan 4, 2017
Courtesy, Susan Reid

Briggs. That’s my mother’s maiden name. It is also my first name. It’s a strange name, often mistaken.

It is not Bryce, Brig, Brick, Bridge, Bricks — or even Prince, as one old man misheard.

This was one of many choices for my name. Most were nearly as strange, though I still would have preferred nearly all of them: Ronan, Cadmium, Van, Rory and one of my dad’s favorites — Boy.

But my great-grandmother had a dream before my birth that I would be Briggs, and so it was.

I don’t like my name. It doesn’t fit me.

Young Writers Project: I Believe

Dec 30, 2016
Alison Redlich Photo

I believe hard work gets you

somewhere in life, even though it may

not be the place you want to be. I believe

Young Writers Project: Drugged

Dec 20, 2016
Madi Cohen

I take it like a drug, one that falls
like rain over my open skin,
drink it in like water
until it runs in my blood
knowing nothing but this feeling,
nothing but euphoria of this moment.

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