Because My Cat Found A Unicorn & Other Reasons Why @ Manley High School

Last Thursday, Mr. Peterson and Ms. O’Neal’s classes read and discussed an English translation of the poem “Because” by Greek poet, Yannis Ritsos. The poem offers ten lines of explanation, each depicting a new scene, “because the girl with the bicycle lingered outside the drugstore” and offers readers beautiful images “because the horse on the mountain was more alone than the star” by doesn’t reveal what it is explaining until the volta, “because of this, only because of this, I told you lies.” We brainstormed potential last lines and wrote our own versions of Ritsos’ explanation or apology poem.

Mr. Peterson
U.S. History

Brandon D.

That’s why I haven’t cleaned the house
Because I was ditching class
Because I went in early
Because I missed practice
Because I overslept
Because I was late for school
Because I didn’t call you back
Because I didn’t answer the phone
Because I didn’t do the homework
only because I was tired.


Tekia M.

Because the Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup
Because they had a parade
Because the NBA finals were on
Because I had to shower
Because the dog broke my phone
Because my cat found a unicorn
Because LeBron James living grew back
Because my fish had a heart attack
Because it was hailing outside
Because my parents moved to the countryside
only for this reason, I got fired from my job.


Dearl B.

Because I got hit by a car
Because I fell off my dirt bike
Because I fell off the building
Because I lost my baby toe
Because I tripped over the cat
Because my sister choked me in my sleep
Because my earring got stuck in my ear
Because I got jumped
Because I dropped hot grits on my face
Because I fell out the window,
for only this reason, I’m in the hospital.


Stephanie W.

Because people get on my nerves
Because they irritating
Because I’m not always friendly
Because I don’t trust people
Because they sneaky
Because they ain’t loyal
Because they fake
Because they phony
Because they keep up a lot of stuff
Because they go back and run their mouth
Because they have no life but to worry about mine
only for this reason, I don’t like people.

Ms. O’Neal

Dr. Crawford

Because I still have no money
Because I could not catch the bus
Because 100 pennies still make a dollar in the world
Because taking candy from a baby is easy
Because when someone see something they should shut up
Because my birthday only comes one time a year
Because no sin is bigger then the other
Because it has rained all summer long
Because gas has gone up 50 cents in Chicago
Because money is the route to evil—for this,
reason I stole $10.00 from your mom.


Veronica R.

Because they pants too tight
Because there are too many people
Because there are bumps in the road
Because there is no speed limit
Because there is not a loud enough alarm
Because the time doesn’t stop
Because I live too far
Because I work
Because I’m a teen
Because I’m me
and this, only for this reason I am late to school.


Because after Yannis Ritsos
Tiese A.

Because life ain’t all that easy for teens
Because Trump might be our new slave master
Because I saw Miley Cyrus twerking
Because the street lights on my block are out and the only light flashing is from the police camera on the corner
Because I’m a super senior
Because everyday isn’t the weekend
Because Frank Ocean isn’t making music lately
Because Alliyah is dead and I wish she wasn’t so I could be singing her new songs
Because my brothers may be next to be gunned down
For this, only for this reason, I need therapy.



“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.