The Welcome Table

A common household object became the focus for this lesson, while studying Joy Harjo’s poem, Perhaps the World Ends Here. The poet James Merrill once commented that, ‘we understand history from the family around the table.’

Lesson Note: Harjo’s work is often autobiographical, informed by the natural world, and above all preoccupied with survival and the limitations of language.

“I feel strongly that I have a responsibility to all the sources that I am: to all past and future ancestors, to my home country, to all places that I touch down on and that are myself, to all voices, all women, all of my tribe, all people, all earth, and beyond that to all beginnings and endings. In a strange kind of sense [writing] frees me to believe in myself, to be able to speak, to have voice, because I have to; it is my survival.” -Joy Harjo.

Mrs. Nazimek, 8th Grade
Group 2

At The Table
Bryanna P.

At the table I play
games like Monopoly.
At the table I sometimes
get yelled at.
The table is like a sign
of brining everyone together.
The table has been
through a lot and still
has not managed to chip
or break.
The table is a very
special thing.
At the table we laugh,
talk and sometimes even
fall asleep.
At the table there are
so many memories that
will never be forgotten.

Maribel R.

The world begins at a dining room table.
You would eat at this table
This table had all my birthday cakes
This table had all my family dinners
All my homework has been done at this table.
After having so much homework on this
table I thought the table would collapse
Under the table are legs and my
dog spread out in the middle.
This table had our family gatherings.
This table has never been moved.
At this table we talk about anything.
This table has held my life together.
this table has seen sadness and
This world will end at the dining
room table, while we are laughing
and having happiness.

Mrs. Nazimek, 8th Grade
Group 3

Kitchen Table
Emily A.

We eat at this table,
delicious food that we can’t get sick of.
each day we converse at this talbe.
we talk about the good
and the bad…
We have heard some tragic things.
Other things were wonderful
We all reunite at this table.
It’s the only time we can be together.
It’s what got us closer,
What made us stronger,
What made us weaker,
Waht made us happier.
Buat whatever happens in the end,
we’ll all be together,
laughing, talking and gossiping
at the kitchen table.

Alejandra C.

The Darknesss, and the light.
I lay within both.
Then the sun’s warm rays shine
through, my blankets go up.
My bed awaits, the moment
I decide to finally get up.
It sits through the endless nights
of Netflix bingewatching.
Through the intesnse pillow fights.
through the snacks that fall on
the surface.
through the most satisfying
Feeling, or finally being done.
It waits for me, to be donw with
my ice cream.
it reminds me of my essential
night routine.
Then, after I’m done, I fall asleep.

Mrs. Strus, 7th Grade

Table of Memories
Gabriella S.

The table si where I enjoyed eating dinner with my
The table is where I aged, and where everyone would
sing for me at each birthday.
the table is where we had long talks about life
and waht it’s become.
The table is where I told my parents what I wanted to
be when I grew up.
the table is where I was taught to behave.
The table is where we played hours of games
as a family.
Lastly, the table is where I live and learn the
meaning of life.

The Table
Cesar L.

I have worked very hard
at the table. I hope to mmet
family members I have never seen
at this table. There have been
fights at this table. Tears have
dropped on this table. I have cleaned
this table. It’s a brown wooden



“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.