Be A Kid…Again! Nostalgia and Memory in Poetry

Students shared childhood stories before writing their own poem reflecting back on their younger selves, as the speaker does in Billy Collins’ poem, On Turning Ten.

Lesson Note. “I think one of the strengths of nostalgia is that even if they have not had a good childhood, most people have at least one nostalgic memory that they cherish and that they can use repeatedly. Someone once asked me: ‘How long do these effects last?’ My 11-year-old daughter said: ‘They last your entire life!’ She’s right, too. Once positive memories are instantiated they might have only represented half an hour of your entire childhood, but you can dwell on them and return to them forever.”--Dr. Tim Wildschut and Constantine Sedikides, Department of Social Sciences & Psychology.  Article: ‘Looking back in joy: the power of nostalgia.’

Ms. Munoz, 7th Grade
First Period

Sebastian P.

Remember when it was early,
When costumes, TV and were like gold.
Ya some might say those were the good times.
Not for me, being so venerable and clueless isn’t good.
Being smart and knowledged are much more useful to me.

Your live is more enjoyable now
You have more confidence and have a
variety of things to do.
The freedom is also nice. If you think about it.
But hey that’s just me.

Ellis W.

When I was 8 I acted very different.
I was more crazy and knew a lot less.

The Bow and Arrow
Elena N.

Cut and bend the bark.
Take the string and decorate.
Climb the hills to find.
The bug infested sticks.

Attach, pull, and release.
Excited to see how far
My arrow will go.
For time has passed since then.

And now I can only imagine
How far my own dreams go.
Because i depend on
Seeing that happiness again.

Patrick Z

The food.
The Fortnight.
The Season 2
The bike.
The movie.
The game.
The pencil.
The Victory Royales.
The comet.

Ms. Munoz, 7th Grade
Third Period

Growing Up
Lizzie L.

Growing up is not that fun.
I miss the good ol’ days
Where I would dance around a stage
in a fluffy tutu
or see my first best friend again
and laugh about everything with her.
Reality is harsh.
Now all I worry about is school, school, school
Test, test, test. Homework, homework, homework.
Stress, stress, stress.
Being a little kid is like having a shield.
A shield to a fierce warrior called life.
Growing up will make this shield become weaker.
But I find that if you look on the positive
side, things aren’t that bad.
So maybe once you’re shield breaks,
You can be beat up by life.
But smile as it happens.

Robert S.

3, How I wish I was 7. I played games. Childish
games, games I would be told are not OK to be played at my age.
Games even my sister doesn’t play, but I love them
I loved building my character’s life, being able to have
powers, be able to be a child.

8, How hard it is to be 8. New responsibilities, new
standards, old friends being forgotten. I have to help with
chores? Help my sister? Nothing prepares me. I got
no warning and no choice!

But I love it, I love the change. The new experiences,
the new people and new thoughts. New ideas flowing
new maturity, new abilities

Kara L.

My favorite dog, ‘lost’
Oh were could he be?
Uncle, where did he go?
For I , have looked everywhere.

The life I lived about nine years ago.
How did I get so old?
Just yesterday it feels I was living this life.
Where did all this time go?

As I get older, I meet new people.
I get closer to family, four years ago
that year I saw them all again.

The times I was younger
is such a blur
that is what makes me old.

Ms. Munoz, 7th Grade
Sixth Period

Jonathan M.

When I was nine
the year was a shine
I had so much fun
especially in the sun

I had fun with my friends
We all chilled in our dens
But that was then

now we don’t really hang
It’s sad. dang
We don’t really talk
or really walk

Eleven and Twelve
Amina A.

Eleven: As bright as a
sun. Freedom winded
in and out, and
no responsibility occurred.

Transition: Freedom is
on less petal to
blow, and ages
come hard. H.W.
rushes in, and drown me
in the ocean.

Twelve: Test, study,
Test, Study, Test.
Wash dishes. Trash
garbage. Don’t mess
up life. Find who
you are.grade

Ms. Munoz, 7th Grade
Seventh Period

Priscila M.

When I was seven
I was a very bright kid.
I was in 2nd grade
and had great friends and was weird.

When I was eleven
I also had a group.
I had one best friend.
and we were inseparable.
We were like a notebook and pencil.

Not a lot had changed between
now and then. I still loved
the same things. I was very different
from eleven.

Now at 12, I had to leave my
best friends, change schools, and
go to 7th grade. At first it was horrible.
I only had 2 friends that tagged along.
Eleven was very different from twelve.

Continuing on with 7th grade was hard.
It was not like 2nd or 6th grade.
It was a lot more complicated.
‘Change is hard’ i told myself.
‘But keep on moving forward!’

Keith G.

I was 8/ I was 12
I was smart/I was cool
I was weird /I was smart
I liked to fart/ I liked pools

Soccer’s good/ Basketball is great
Basketball’s good/ Soccer’s great
I like to sleep/ My cat died
Food is good /that’s not Great.

Ms. Munoz, 7th Grade
Eighth Period

Emily R.

you say no, I cant
but I say yes I want to
It’s not a big deal
you say

I’m turning 10! It’s
a big deal. double
digits mean I’m
a preteen!

Now, I’m 12, and almost
a teen, I wish I could
go back to that 9
year old time.

Maggie T.

I look through the portal of time,
on my 8 year-old self,
trying so hard to draw a decent picture,
like the ones on the internet
only to throw her pencil and
put her head down in frustration.
It takes all my will not to go to the child;
show her my sketch book and say:
‘Keep trying. You will get better.’

Yet, I pull myself out and land my eye instead
onto a 20 year old me, drawing a masterpiece
Now I feel like the child;
in wonder and resentment,
at the person who’s better at everything.
She turns to me, shows me her sketchbook and says.
‘Keep trying. You will get better.’

And now I stand alone,
with my own work
in hand.
I pick up my pencil
and open a page.
I begin to draw.
I must keep trying.

I will get better.



“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.