Ode to the Midwest

Continuing the tradition set by last week’s longer poem, for our fourth session we read “Ode to the Midwest” by Kevin Young. Students recognized immediately that the poet is being funny throughout the poem, though sometimes he is also serious, creating an interesting tone. Young also employs a number of literary devices here, so we identified his use of metaphor, simile, personification, and puns, along with rhyme. We also discussed the idea of the Midwest, which is a geographical location but also perhaps an attitude, which may explain some of the speaker’s declarations, such as “I want to be doused / in cheese // & fried,” and behavior, such as when he gets up “early, before / anyone’s awake,” just to be the first person in his neighborhood to scrape his driveway clean. Why should that matter?

I explained that this poem is an example of an ode, an ancient form that expresses emotion over something you love, and asked students to compose their own. Here’s a selection.

Ms. Carlson
Room 316

Ode to Da Cheese Burger!
David B.

delicious but not
very nutritious.
A super yummy
Super delicious
to eat.
2 buns
1 cheese
1 pickle
1 meat.

Ode to Video Games
Jadon J.

I don’t feel like doing
anything my parents
make me go swimming
I fake like I am
sick so I can
play video games
after all my birthday
is tomorrow. I don’t
have to do anything
because just in
12 hours I’ll
be getting Titanfall.
I can relax do anything
because I know
just around the corner
I’ll be ten.
But I go swimming
because it’s a family
thing and because
I love my family anyway
and you should too.

Ode to Sports
Benjamin K.

Of the many
I love them
all. I
play them
a lot. My
favorite is
I hit the ball
hard. I pitch
the ball
fast and accurate.
For basketball,
I shoot the
basketball well.
For football,
I can pass it
long. I can
catch very
well. All are
very fun.

Ode to Candy
Jaden S.

I want to
shove my face
with candy.

I will eat
gumdrops, chocolate,
and many more.

Candy is the

I will get
a sugar rush

and bounce
off the walls.

I want candy
every day!

Ode to Sports
Emmett S.

I want to

run around

all day.

I may be tired,

but I still have an extra

source of energy.

Catching the ball,

throwing it back,

kicking the ball
and kicking it back

hitting the puck,
and hitting it back.

But then falling to your

knees, in the agony of

defeat, or the feeling of

victory. The sense of teamwork,

and winning it all, brings together

the ode to sports.

Ode to Candy
Richard T.

Oh how I like this treat
so sweet.
Dipped in sugar and
spice and everything nice.
Girls don’t deserve to be made this way.
It is candy,
the one and only candy.
As you can see
which you probably can’t,
candy is the best,
and definitely better than those girls,
who stole the title of the sweet

Mr. Chau
Room 220

Ode to Minecraft Lite of Birthday Parties
Alan D.

Gulp, why did I go to this adventure,
I am trapped, in a mine shaft.
I hear a monster’s power but I
see no torches. I just see redstone
torches then I see a miracle, light on
the range for I hate darkness but
I love sunlight. I go to the light
nothing stops me. No creepers, no
zombies. Then there is an explosion
and I see cake, gifts, food and
they say this is my birthday
how could this be better? I
hope no darkness appears.

Ode to Sports
Allen F.

I always love to play sports
I love basketball I’m always on the court.
I like to kick balls,
I try always fall
and I would build a snowball fort.

So then I would love to play soccer.
I kick the ball never hide in my locker.
So then I would say
To sports “Let’s go play”
I would never use myself for a popper.

Ode to Soccer
Erick P.

Dribbling the
ball. The referee
making the foul

The goalie is
flying. When we
lose we are

The shooting
goal we win.
The away team is
mad they kick my

Ode to Dance
Olivia P.

My ode to dance.
It is my ultimate hobby.
Also it is the best way
to get your heart rate started.
Many people like it the beautiful
You may think it is just a
lift of a leg but it is
so much more with every
heel stretch. This is my ode to

Ode to the Pen
Praniksha S.

The pen is helpful to us to write.
It can be helpful for us to do our
homework for children.
We can write anything in any-
When we cannot talk with others
what we want to say to people
we can write on a
separate sheet of paper what
we want to say.
The pen can help everyone
to write.

Ode of Ta’Khara Money
Ta’Khara S.

once walking
once talking
once Ta’Khara
once money
once baked
Doing all those things but
you can’t talk about my

Mr. Cox
Room 312

Ode to Dance
Summer F.

Dance is to move
as take away is to remove
Dance is to sit
as spit is to bit
Dance is good
as hoodie is to hood
To Dance is great
like the food on your plate

Ode to Beef Jerky
James G.

The juiciness
I want to throw and explode. I love
the tangy flavor of the food. Ode to
jerky ode to jerky I also really
love turkey. If you touch my jerky
touch my jerky I will punch you
nice and smirky!!!!

Ode to Books
Nell H.

I like to ruffle the pages, breathe in the musty
smell of long lived pages.
I like imagining what is happening in my
mind picturing I’m a character.
I like slipping in the piece of
paper and staring at the cover – so perfect.
I like to devour each word storing
it in my brain.
I like to look, till
it ends then I pause to seek
out a new one.

Ode to Minecraft
Jackson H.

Your pixillated blocks all around
Hide secrets that are not yet to be found
Your black and blue and green blotted ore
Leaves passers-by begging for more

The scary monsters all around
Come popping from holes in the ground
The constant shots of skeletons
Leave remnants of a person’s sons

Ode to Spring Break
Taylor K.

I like to go to vacation
during spring break,

I like the lemonade cools
me this year,

me and my dog playing
around in the hot sunny,

but his tongue cools me why
he licks me.

Ode to Puppies
McKenna M.

Ode to puppies big
eyes and heart! Loving
and loyal. Furry friends
protective barks. Different
kinds same love. To stuffed
animals, to stickers or real.
Just stay the same puppies.

Ode to Life
Kaila W.

Life is good
Life is great
We should
thank it
for the
food on our

Ode to Life,
Ode to life,
let us thank it
for this rice.



“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.