‘The day when I danced’: Shelter In Place Poems

As we continue distance learning, students at Taft Freshman Academy continue to generate beautiful poems! This week’s poems are inspired by Sheltered In Place by Richard Levine. Students examined/ observed how they passed time during lockdown both in reality and in fantasy/ memory.

Lesson Note: ‘In a time of crisis, poetry can help focus our fears and transform ‘noise into music’ … In effect, poetry “aims in every possible way to reaffirm the world that we actually inhabit, in all its vital, messy, beautiful, tragic reality. Mar 10, 2020, The Washington Post.

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period One

Waking up
By Lincoln R.

I wake my chromebook up alongside me
Ready for another day of work.
It says, ‘You’re a sloth today, Lincoln.”
I shake my head and open a tab.

My classes moved;
they were slower than growing corn
I was the farmer doing the work
The corn asked if I was still awake and I closed my computer.

this lockdown
By Mari K.

Reading, comfortable in a spot where
nothing can hurt you. Alone, needing
a place to take you away from this reality that
doesn’t have any problems, is something you could
only imagine. A place that would will allow
you show your imagination.

Traveling, making new memories,
adventures seem so long ago.
Having to stay at home with no adventures,
not being about to laugh or smile
with your friends, can make you feel sad or lonely.
As i dream about how
I wish about how i want my present to be,
my future still await, you just have to
make sure you doing the right thing,
Imagining. The only thing that gets us,
through this time….

As i remember the traditions we used to do, all together.
I feel an overwhelming feeling of sadness
about how much i miss it, and how much is going
to change, because of this year..
Even when you are away you’re still in my heart.

Movies with friends, family, people..
How i miss the smell of
movie theatre popcorn and sitting
in a cold theater with friends laughing,
before a movie starts.
sneaking in snacks from home
instead of having to pay more for a snack there,
hoping you don’t get caught.
Wishing you could be on that big screen
in a different reality

By Max M.

If I can put some “english” on the ball,
Climbing the hill before the mountain
Part of the crowd.

You can only gain experience, not lose it,
Education is a marathon not a sprint.

Shining light on dark spaces,
A wave of calmness crashing on the beaches.

Strategies that twist your mind,
Is it possible to walk the same path?

Ms. Taylor, 9th Grade
Period Two

Exciting but fallen
By Anwita S.

The day starting with my workouts
The sunrise that wakes me up
My day was a trapped with sadness
but kept going till I’m not succed
The sweat going through my whole body
making me feel motivated

Facetiming my best friends
Who makes me happy from 8,431 miles away
The person who can make you smile
Make your soul filled with flowers
through million miles away and
the person who is next door can’t even talk to your soul

The day when I danced
as if it was my last chance
til the raindrops stopped
and the sun rises

Being with my whole family this year
Again it was dropped with the pain
Because of this pandemic
tears dropping through my soul
talking to myself that “it’s gonna be okay”

Watching movies with my family
Closing the lights and turning the movie night
into a horror scene
The one who is is scared
The one is more excited about what’s happening next
and one is curious if there’s a ghost or not

Hanging out with my cousins
Connecting with my cousins felt
Like I met my own self

Like meeting my own past best friend
Like being with a family.

By Daniel M.

Stay home and not being able to do what i like to do
I also get what i need to do first than do what i choose too
For my fun time everything i do makes me feel different rather
I like to do it or not i get threw it just try do it it as fast as possible if
I dont like it, i have to go to school which i really dont like
I like to walk my dog during my lunch break since i love to
Take my dog on a walk since he loves it and i like to make him happy
I play games after school and that clams me down since i work out feel the
Pump and talking to my friends on the game.

By Eliza H.

Volleyball is a sport that makes me feel nice
when i spike that ball
The ball goes straight to the
Ground and the point goes…

My team
The game goes up to 25
But… if the other team is one point away from you
You go to 27.

Stay At Home
By Julian G.

Days pass by feeling like there’s not
enough time and sitting idle in a chair
Looking at a screen like the monkies do in
Toy story watching everyone

Sleeping like a sloth to pass time to only be
found with more time to do things. Doing things
to pass time has been like seeing the same
movie over and over, it’s redundant

Hopefully, one-day things will go back to “normal”
But until then I live like a person who has unlimited
days but only lives inside like an anxiety-filled introvert.

By Matthew G.

When I talk to friends it’s like they’re with me it’s like they never left me they feel like the family members I never had.

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period Four

By Andrew M.

The human mind is a fragile one, containing breakable synapses and connections
While circuits and binary do not share the same fragility
You can grow old, forget your experiences
But machines will always hold the memories of old
Looking on my 3DS uncovering memories of old
Memories of photos and audio files

Stuck in a world of no movement
By Dylan P.

I sit around in my bed all day
Thinking of when I’ll be back out there
I feel gloomy hoping one day I can go visit the bay

I barely leave the house, but like I care
my mom doesn’t want me to stay
I feel like a lifeless man with nothing to bare

Sitting inside just as I stare

Escape to my Fantasy
By Hope G.

I read all day and all night,
Reacting all the scenes of this reading,
as though I was faced with the same situation.

I feel as though I am daydreaming.
Placed in the fantasies where there is no escape.
Each word pulls me deeper into this world.

I have no senses in this outer world,
solely focused on these white pages swaying in front of me.
following each black word with my observant eyes.

By Larry F.

I watch the screens of the digital era,
Seeing my life going by like the binary.
My eyes tiring after the run at the blue-white LED’s.
I turn the speedy movements,
Life slows down.

I pick up the white and color book,
As I open it,
The universe breaking apart into
Atoms and molecules,
Chemical bonds and cells,
Elements and lines.

The paragraphs explain the universe from start to finish.

I get bored and go draw a story.
Sci-fi and alternate history combine.
The drawing move, graphite lines bending and expanding.
I see the story burst with color and once it’s done
I stare at its beauty.

I get ready for bed,
A normal day has passed.
I cover myself in the bedsheets.
And think if the next day,
Will be average
Or maybe something unexpected.

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period Six

By Georgia K.

I set my pen to the page
And walk along the dark lines
To a magical place I created in my mind
Wandering for hours on end

With no map to guide me
I run through the pages and fill them quickly;
All my ideas spill out onto the pages
And create a pathway to my imagination

Reality is all in the past
All I can see is the pen marks
Staining each paper with the words

Quarantine Shenanigans
By Jacob G.

We are an empty glass of water, constantly longing to be filled.
We are flowers, where a lack of joyous sunshine can kill us.
I am a 100-pound weight, heavy with guilt
We are labyrinth explorers, constantly getting lost in the pages of books.

Sheltered In Place
By Leslie L.

She goes on late night walks to the lake
It makes her feel less lonely and calm
She is a wave on the lonely lake

She mediates
It calms her and makes her feel better
I am a bad thought slowly fading away

She listens to music
It brings her joy
She is a lyric bringing her happiness

She does yoga
It makes her body feel less stiff
She is a tense muscle loosening up

Across The Sea of Clouds
By Nathan S.

I stare blankly in class
My mind wanders to a boat
It drifts across the forever sea
The clouds making it hard to see

It lands ashore the land
Walks across in snow
Until it reaches the end
There was nothing there except darkness

The darkness like a barrier
The sea shattered beneath his feet
It wasn’t a sea, it was clouds beneath his feet
He hit the sea that shattered as well

Darkness was now in the sea

I Feel
By Nathaniel S.

I feel when I game that I am in the computer
I feel that when I play the court is me
I feel that I am a social experiment being tested
I feel like I am in the terrain and in the ocean
I feel like I am my brain and I am losing brain cells
I feel that I am all positions and all positions are me
I feel the same way a battery feels when it is fully charged
I feel that I am a drawer and can find anything
I feel that I am an adult and that I am becoming wiser.
I feel the same way everyone else feels.

Ms. Taylor, 9th Grade
Period Seven

By jermaury b.

Play on my ps4 It cools me down Listening to music it’s a vibe

Sheltered in place
By Anonymous

I am an owl
I stayed up late
Not sleeping till four am

So much work
Piles and plies
I am lost in a maze of work

Sheltered In Place
By Mason F.

You watch your memories
Fade away, disappearing
Laying down all day long
Being a sloth in a tree

Remembering those long
Morning runs, being Flash
At the start and slowing down
At the end becoming a turtle

Playing video games all day
My thumbs touching the buttons
Me realizing I am the buttons
I have full control over the game

Looking out the window
Seeing nothing but trees and houses
Everybody locked inside
I am a gloomy cloud

Looking over the neighborhood
Seeing nobody
So lonely and quiet
Just the sounds of wind



“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.