Billy Collins’ Most Excellent Adventure!

For our final poem at Washington, I chose, On Turning Ten by Billy Collins. The poem has one looking back while at the same time, looking forward…apropos for a great group of 8th Graders heading into the next big phase of their lives. Again, there were so many good examples to share, they could not possibly all be represented, here are a few as this Residency ends. Hats off to Mrs Nazimek and her creative classes of students. This has been ‘a most excellent adventure!’  Enjoy these final poems!

Mrs. Nazimek, 8th Grade
1st Period

Brianna A.

Five year old me, so sweet and kind
I would giggle and laugh most of the time
But one day everything went blind
I was playing with my older brother
We were running all the time
But that day everything went blind
I was so scared, I ran
Ran into the bathroom and slammed the door
I slammed it so hard I was stuck
Stuck like gum on someone’s shoe
That day everything went blind
I thought I was stuck for ever but that was a

Six year old me, I thought I was independent
My parents took me to Target and then Toys ‘R’ Us
They need baby stuff for my baby brother
I was looking at the books. They asked me to
follow but I stood behind
I bursted into tears and run out crying
I ran to Toys ‘R’ Us because I thought they left
The Manager called the cops, but I was fine
I went home and laughed about my story

Mrs. Nazimek, 8th Grade
2nd Period

Max G.

Man O’ Man those
single digits days,
were the days. I remember
4 I was in love with
my dinos. They all had
names. When I was in
Pre-K the first time I
made a friend and we
always talked. 6 I had
my first taco with
chili, my tongue was
on fire for a week.
When I was 7 I
thought that I was
the best soccer
player ever. Know its
different. I really do
miss those days.

Turning 14
Hanzel M.

Oh no my past me
You know if I meet him I’d I’d
I’d slap him across the face
God decisions Delete repeated word why so many
Oh why did you make so may terrifying decisions
Geeze you would say ‘ehh that’s future
Hanzel’s problem not my problem.’
Well, you sure got us in a juicy pickle tonight
Now to this day I have to deal with problems
you caused.

Mrs. Nazimek, 8th Grade
3rd Period

A New Age, A New Skin
Gladys V.

This new age isn’t a win win
A sigh of defeat
When I’d rather retreat
The big teen ages, but I’d prefer the young ages.

At Five I was a mermaid sitting on a rock
brushing my hair, collecting shells

At Seven I was a lost boy running around with
Peter Pan.
We’d lay in the warm sun getting a nice tan.

At the tender age of Eleven
I knew I was no seven
But please
Take me back to when I was seven.



“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.