TEAM Englewood – Week 7

Today we looked at William Stafford’s “Traveling Through the Dark.” I like this poem as it’s about an act of violence that seems justified in its reasoning, but doesn’t feel triumphant. It is hard to justify violence for me, but I think it’s a human impulse and sometimes unavoidable. I had a student once describe this as an anti-hero poem: when you do a right thing that doesn’t feel right.

This workshop was about dilemmas – either their own times of not knowing what to do, or if they like, a rewriting of Stafford’s.


Ms. Dube – 9th grade

5th Period


“When My Lil’ Cuzn got Burnt”

Kara W


When My lil’ cuzn got burnt

she ran into the front room

and was knocking everything down

like boom! boom!

I don’t know what to do, but

my Auntie do.

“It’s like I just Saw You”

Corinthia D.


It’s like I just saw you mins ago

when I found out you was gone,

I didn’t know what do

or go.

But now I know that you’re in a better place

I just feel so relieved

and let go.

I just wanna say

I love you

once again, just to let

you know.

“Traveling Through the Dark”

Amber T.


Traveling through the dark

I found a dead deer

laying in the middle of the street. I got

a stick and poked it and it was hard

like the ground

It was best for me to just stand there

on my two feet

it was dark still

there with my flashlight on the deer.

In my body, my spirit just felt

like it flew away like a kite. The deer

stomach was the only big thing

on its body. I was thinking

to myself
should I cut it or leave it?

so myself said
cut it

so I spared it into pieces

from head to toe

so it had a baby in its stomach

it was little as my baby toe

so I took the road to the vet

made a bet

to let the deer set.

Ms. Dube – 9th grade

7th Period


“It was my First Football Game”

Marquis D.


It was my first football game

and they told me

to run a slim jim straight across

and I was looking across the field

not knowing what to do.


“The Time I Didn’t Know how to Play Poker”

Damien C.


I always wanted to know

how to play poker. The first

time I played it

I kept putting all my money on the table

and losing it

one billion times. The last

one, I finally won.

Still don’t know how I won, but I won.

That mainly wasn’t important to me

that I won for the first time

But now

I kind of got a hang of it.

“When My Mom Yells”

Marcell D.


When my mom yells

I feel like I’m

in jail.

When she doesn’t

the chains break

and I come out

like a beast.

Ms. Dube – 9th grade

8th Period


“I Walked into the Big Glass Doors”

Tyra C.


I walked into the big, glass doors

not knowing what to expect. I saw

a few freshmen yelling

we up next. I looked around and saw


my heart started to pound

next thing I know there’s pennies

all over the ground. The fear I had was real

which made me know

high school is the deal.


“Waking up Hungry”

Bryan P.


Waking up hungry

not in my house

don’t wanna get caught

sneaking for food

midnight darkness all I saw

“What Should I Do?”

Krisheina R.


What should I do?

A lie?

She’ll never trust me again

The truth?

He’ll never talk to me again.

A mother’s trust or

a brother’s love

what should I do?

Should I just let him go with it

or stop him in his tracks?

I was wrong for letting him go

But my mother will never know.



“Writing poetry makes me feel like I can see myself, like I can see my reflection, but not in a mirror, in the world. I write and I know I can be reflected.”
-Oscar S.

“Writing poetry makes me feel free.”
-Buenda D.

“Writing poetry is like your best friend.”
-Jessica M.