‘Someone gave me a solar system’

On the first day of our 5th Grade poetry residency at Sayre Elementary, we went over what poetry is, as well as the poetic terms “line” and stanza.” We then read a poem by Naomi Shihab Nye about a very strange gift. The poem was called “Valentine for Ernest Mann” and featured a man giving his wife two skunks for Valentine’s Day. Just like poetry, we talked about how there’s something beautiful to be found in most things. After that, students chose to either write about a weird gift they have received or given, or even make up their own weird gift they would give or receive. We shared some very strange gifts…

Mrs. Childs’ Classroom

100 Slimy Snails

By Swyft B.

If I could, I would give a stranger

100 snails in a box with bowties.

The stranger might get a

Grossed out feeling.

To me, I think snails are cool. 

I would take care of them and

Help them learn how to 

Swim in a pool.

Even though snails are slimy,

I still think they’re beautiful in

My eyes. God made them for a reason.

The Weirdest Gift in Space

By Abigail K.

Today, someone by the name of Alyssa gave me a

Solar system

I really wonder why

Should I teleport?

Or should I fly?

I don’t know how she expects me to not forget the way

I probably won’t live to see it anyway,

What’s the purpose of it all?

Are there aliens?

I thought they were only on Mars

If  see this someday

That day will be better than any day

Filled with planets

I’ll use my gift to be rich.

The Rainbow Socks

Londyn C.

The rainbow socks were colorful

My grandma said they look very wonderful

I had a frown on my face

Wishing the socks were something else

My father asked me why I look so sad

I said I didn’t want socks, Dad!

Mr. Goldner’s Classroom


By Ella P. 

I have a big box. Not a box

Full of rocks. But a box full

Of chocolate hearts. It reaches

The sky high and tall as you

Don’t have to worry about it 

being small. If you eat all the 

Chocolates it will give you

The ick as later you will

Be sick! Some with caramels

Some with apples. 

A Single Starburst as a Gift

By Alanis A.

A single starburst as a gift, how weird?

Expecting more, wondering what else was in store.

You can’t expect any more from siblings, I guess

But at least a dollar to fix this mess.

I single starburst, I eat in confusion and joy

But boy, at least it’s a gift

The first gift from him at least

I treasure it like it’s a feast.

A few months past, but not fast

In confusion and joy, I treasure this gift

This gift of a single, pink


The Paper Gift

By Jayson P. 

A paper, anything I can do 

With 10,000 pieces of paper is

Draw on it, fold it, and maybe make 

A comic. I know it’s the weirdest

Gift, but there is so much that

I can do with 10,000

Pieces of paper.



“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.