The Shadow Knows…

Last week, we read our second translated poem by an international poet, Italian Carlo Betocchi‘s “The Shadow.” I asked the students if the poem rhymed, and we talked about the poet’s use of half or slant rhymes, along with more obvious ones, as well as imagery and personification. When the discussion turned to the poem’s title, I pointed out how many shadows were actually all around us, in the classroom, and students got out of their seats to look more closely at them. We also talked about how the length and size of shadows can differ, depending on such factors as the location of the light source and time of day.

The idea for writing was for the students to incorporate shadows in their poems. I mentioned that since our classes fell on Groundhog Day, that could work as a topic too.

Ms. Thiel, 2nd Grade

Lucas C.

A shadow moves when
you move and a shadow
gets long when the sun comes
up that is cool.

Groundhog Day
Aurelie G.

It was a dark winter
morning and Phil the
came out

did he see his shadow?
No he did not spring
will come earlier

Mitra S.

A book’s shadow
is thin as paper a clock
has shadows all around

it’s nice and soft like
always stars shadow
you still can see dark

or cold it will
always every
day be a unique shadow.

Albert S.

Shadow morning shadow all around
me I wake up I see my shadow morning
I wake up

Family Spirits of Shadow
Destiny S.

Walking around on the beach
two shadows me and
my brother so young so small
nothing can top it off
at all

Lay down nice boy
shadows there and there
it is everywhere and
everyday you might get
scared it’s OK sit back enjoy this time

Everybody has a shadow
mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, sister
brother probably you too
so young so old so small so tall
any color just know you
have one

Ms. Ward, 2nd Grade

A Shadow
Arjun A.

I saw a shadow. It had a sad heart.
It moved like the wind feels like it ran away.
I feel like a sad shadows. Like a sad

Matasia C.

Shadows can be really spooky
for some people. Or, for
the little babies. I love shadows!
They make me look tall,
and I love to be tall
just like a mom or
dad. Do you love shadows?
That might be it about
shadows bye.

A Groundhog’s Shadow
Roxane L.

A groundhog sprouts, oh hee!
It does not see its shadow, whoopee!

But the groundhog sees a leaf’s
shadow, an inchworm, and a grasshopper

It goes to investigate, but it only
finds its friends

My Shadow
Max M.

I have a shadow on my body no one
could steal it like everyone’s shadow
it’s like a not hurtful thing
that follows you only if there’s light.
I love my shadow when I’m
bored I play with it. It’s a
star I love my shadow.

The Shadows Boy
Isis O.

I have a boy

am his shadow

I like my boy

am on the ground

I stay with my boy

The shadows boy

Me the Shadow
Reva S.

I am a shadow
when the sun sets I grow bigger
when the sun goes up I am smaller
you will see me on sunny days
I am usually tall
sometimes I am very small
I am a shadow

Ms. O’Connor, 2nd Grade

Zakaria B.

I saw a
shadow. It
followed me everywhere, so I grabbed
it. And threw it away. And I
got bored. I called
called. It came
back. I tried to
hug it. I couldn’t. Oh well.

Darius N.

I see a shadow. A shadow
indeed. I see a shadow, a
shadow from a tree.

I see a shadow up there
and it’s free. O how I
wish everyone could see
this shadow in this tree.

Xibao Q.

A groundhog saw his
shadow, it was a nice
green meadow.

Spring had come it
was gonna rain,
I’m a farmer I made a train.

I saw a stork right
by his shadow he was next
to the meadow

My Always There Friend
Shirley R.

My always there friend
Following me around
Never making a sound
Following me to the end.

My friend is always behind me
Like we’re playing Follow the Leader.
Sometimes my friend’s only a few meters
Sometimes we play around and see

All the others playing tag
We join them
Then I’m hungry for a nice plum
I find a plum I clean it with a rag

At night
My friend is gone
Probably playing with a doe.
Oh wait! My friend’s a shadow!

Ranya S.

I see a shadow of my
pencil…as I write it’s
drawing “I”s and “Y”s

others are jiggling
squiggling and figgling
some others are
doing their thing

the shadows are moving
and skretching high they
look like giants in the
sky…so I think I might


Ms. Rupp, 2nd Grade

Addison A.

A shadow
is a dark spot
in your dream.

A shadow is a
spot of darkness
under a stream.

A shadow is
under a crack
in the sky.

A shadow is under
a person saying

Groundhog Shadows
Rachel B.

Yay! Yay! The groundhog didn’t see his
shadow if he did I would be frozen in
ice but it is still winter! I thought
winter is over! I’m frozen at the toes!

Atia L.

Shadows are all
around you

you don’t notice
that just

around every then
and now
you see a

little more
shadows shadows
every morning

and afternoon you see
a little more shadows

Shadow Chamber
Tlaloc R.

There are shadows everywhere.

The shadow is haunting you.

Wherever you

shadow will
haunt you forever.

[For eternity.]

Sophia S.

The shadow

follows me

like an

angel in
the sky

of the

passed me
with the
wind and
song through
the air.

The Lonely Shadow
Clara S.

A shadow is lonely just like
yourself it has no one
to play with but itself.
Now sometimes you’re not
lonely and your shadow’s
not either because you
have friends.

Shadows are not noticed
as much as you so take
care of your shadow.

Ms. Schwartz, 2nd Grade

Sydney A.

Shadows are the same thing
seeing your own self
your shadow is never
going to leave you.

Sienna B.

The people are cold and people make
shadows they want to be in their
houses and be warm and drink hot
chocolate and stay home.

I Have a Big Shadow!
Calvin M.

My shadow is
as big as
the world!

Janiyah P.

Sometimes at night
the moon it reflects
on the ground to
see a shadow
and around my
house it has
little lights that you
can see your shadows

Leyla S.

Shadows are cool but
I am sad

shadows hoppy
oh I mean happy
shadows are dark and gray
oh shadows are good
I love shadows shadows
are fun and sneaky
I have to go oh
no I don’t oh
how could I forget
shadows are love to
ma oh I mean
me and if you put your
foot up you can see
your shadows oh I
really got to go bye bye.

Caleb W.

I make a shadow
you make a shadow
anything can make a shadow
a shadow is in you when it is
night time and it is out of you in the
day time you can’t see your
shadow in the night time
and you can see them in the



“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.