Teen Poetry Contest Winner for 1999
Amy Anichini
Regina Dominican High School, Grade 9

Me

Go back to the place
Where the rain came down in the warm summer air,
And the whole joy of playing outside was getting wet. 
Clothing drenched, the game continued
Rolling down the driveway on a glowing, dripping skateboard,
Making up the rules as we went along.
Having the time of our lives,
No cares about yesterday or tomorrow.
Only to be reminded it was time to go home
And walking each other home, flip-flops slapping the backs of our feet.
Back and forth, back and forth
Until one mother would figure out our new game,
And send the other child home.
Only to have the game continue the next day.
And the next.
And the next.
As the summer days neared their close,
We wished it would never end.
But it did.

Go back to the place
Where there was nothing but wilderness,
And a small circle of friends,
All secrets and giggles shared in the tent,
The tent secluded from all the others.
Where a hand behind the ear meant to rendezvous in an unexplored place,
Where freedom was ours and no one could find us and any thing could
happen.
Where, by the fireside, we could lift ourselves, spirit and body, with the
guidance of two fingers and a chant.
Not worrying about yesterday or tomorrow.
And as we enjoyed our adventure,
We wished it would never end.
But it did.

Go back to the place
Where the sky was as blue as the sea and the clouds had taken the day off.
A breeze kept our jackets on,
But our faces were warmed by the sun.
Everyone was friends that day.
Whatever we encountered, we were able to have fun.
No worrying about yesterday or tomorrow.
And as the day wore on the loving and safe feeling continued,
And we wished it would last forever.
Though we all knew it would have to come to an end.
And it did.

Go back to the place
Where people talked endlessly
Noise filling every corner of the room, 
But it was a good feeling.
We could communicate freely, no restrictions,
And we wished it would last forever.
It made us feel safe to listen and talk and slap hands to the beat,
Not worrying about yesterday or tomorrow.
All in the comfort of our room.
But it had to end sometime.
And it did.

Go to the present.
Where all the safety, the warm summer rain, the endless wilderness, the togetherness, the friendship, and the youth are almost gone.
The empty feeling is starting to fill up the part of your heart once occupied
by all these things.
You must survive on your own without innocence, without safe freedom,
without togetherness, without safety.
All alone in a big unknown called life.
And as you step from the childhood we've just learned to appreciate,
To the adulthood we can't begin to understand,
There is one person that can turn an empty future into a full life.
One person that can be counted on to lead, head on, into the darkness of the
unknown.
Me.