“but at the end of the day every/ body is going to do what they /want to do”: Table Poems

A common household object became the focus of this lesson while studying Joy Harjo’s poem, Perhaps The World Ends Here.  The poet James Merrill once commented that ‘we understand history from the family around the table.’

Lesson Note: Harjo’s work is often autobiographical, informed by the natural world, and above all, preoccupied with survival and the limitations of language.

“I feel strongly that I have a responsibility to all the sources that I am: to all past and future ancestors, to my home country, to all places that I touch down on and that are myself, to all voices, all women, all of my tribe, all people, all earth, and beyond that to all beginnings and endings. In a strange kind of sense [writing] frees me to believe in myself, to be able to speak, to have a voice, because I have to; it is my survival.” -Joy Harjo.

Ms. Fernandez, 5th Grade

by Raul A.

At this table I bake. Carefully.

At this table we’re cracking eggs.
Pouring flour.

The Use of the Table
by Julian O.

At this table I wonder any other experiments
that are happening, either if it’s sad, joyful, emotional. But
what’s going on.

AT this table people are celebrating loved one’s deaths.
Useless waiting until someone would just slam the door
open that’s going to bring wonderful news. thoughtless.

At this table someone’s death happened once again.

At this table, barriers drop, and gossip rains down soon
will become a storm.

At this table adventures may you go to but soon there would
be a fellow too who will make it rain all day.

The Family Table
by Arely C.

At this table my family talks about the latest
gossip at home or school

At this table I also do stressful, painful

At this table I see my parents argue
as tears flow down my face, worried
about my parents

At this table My family and I play
lotaia as me, jumping up and down
because I am excited

The Table
by Noemi N.

at the table we play Monopoly
fun. angry. excitement.
we play Uno.
Surprised. nervous.
talking about life.
happy. sad.
arguing about things.
mad. sad.

Mr. Maciasz, 5th Grade

My Table
by Ricardo O.

El Chisme at this table
is crazy when we start
talking about each other.

At this table when I use
my phone, I’m fighting for the
victory on my game.

At this table when we’re
talking about soccer we argue
what team is better and it gets

At this table when I
play it is very relaxing.

Soccer Future
by Adrian G.

Talking at this table. About
soccer is fun I feel very happy and
learning more facts about real Madrid.
But sometimes I feel upset. When my
team loses and i don’t feel confident
If i should become a soccer player
but at the end of the day every
body is going to do what they
want to do.

The Table
Luis V.

In this table you might
meet Jesus yourself
you might throw away
your money this table
is where you grow
and also where it
all ends you might get
dressed you drink
you meet friends
and enemies you talk you
laugh you fight you
gamble on who wins
the world cup a bet you
lose you might win this
table is interesting.

The Table
by Jazlyn L.

Talking at this table
I feel heard.
Its loud you hear laughing
and crying.
Then you hear your phone ring
you text you call you can watch
a movie or show.
In the table you can think and
have fun.
You can have a lot of different
feelings at this table.

Ms.Respress, 5th Grade

here at the Table
by Matthew V.

here at this table many things happen
like playing with a tech deck

or talking about our day
or even playing a board game.

here at this table anything can happen
even doing homework

or whatever brings you joy
like play cards with family

Fun at tables
by Damian A.

At this table there is fun and
sorrow. Don’t worry about the sorry
only fun.

The board games are one part of
fun. Chess and checkers are all part
of this fun.

Watching TV is a thing everyone loves.
It’s thrilling and takes the breath out of
you, but it’s fun.

These are the fun in tables there is
no sorrow in this; there is only

Dinner Table
by Janette S.

At this table.
Freedom from homework
playing at the table
I feel the sun on
my face.
I have the funist time.
Laughing from to talking
Gossiping at the table.
I feel the enjoyment in the laughter.
At this table I can feel freedom
At this table I do my work freely.

What happens at the table?
by Kylie R.

At this table, we play board games.
Playing at this table is so much
fun and competition.

At this table. We do homework.
Homework at this table is kind of
tiring and annoyed.

At this table. We do work.
Work at this table has so
much dedication.

At this table. We play cards.
Playing cards takes time but
fun and laughter.

At this table. We make lunches
for school. Making lunches is fun
and quick.



“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.