‘We were stuck together like tape’

On the first day of our 6th 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…

Mr. Smith’s Classroom

The Cardboard Dino

By Daniel C.

When I was about 6 or 7

I was given a gift that would

Rivel the heavens. 

On my birthday 

I was given a cardboard box

That said “Go Outside”

I went outside 

And to my eyes

Was the most wonderful thing. 

It was a cardboard dinosaur.

Painted to look like a T-Rex,

the Amazon boxes after four years

Came to this masterpiece. 

The Weird Gift

By Emily S.

It was my very favorite day, my birthday.

Where you would eat cake and celebrate!

Sure, not that many people had 

Come, but it was fun.

Lots of people had brought gifts,

But one had stood out…

An axolotl! Such beautiful features and eyes.

But oh so sad when he had to leave me.

Didn’t know how to care for such an

Exotic being I loved.

But we all have to let go sometime!

The Weird Gift 

By Priscilla A.

The dandelion 

With its beauty 

It kills.

The plant that 

Destroys others.

Nature killing itself.

The dandelion is a


Though it kills and destroys,

It has beauty. It is a 

Part of nature. It is a

Gift. My gift, your gift,

Nature’s gift. 

Mr. Hollich’s Classroom

Don’t Be Fooled

By Romeo C.

My mother gave me

A water bottle for my birthday

But not just a regular water bottle

It was in a T-Mobile bag

And I thought it was a iPhone

And when I opened it, she gave me

An empty plastic water bottle

And after that,

I didn’t talk to my mom 

For the rest of the day

But I learned my lesson:

Don’t be fooled.

Valentine’s Tape

By McKinkley R.

I got someone tape, they were so happy.

Jumping with joy, she was so satisfied 

She gave me a hug.

Valentine’s Day was so good. We were stuck

Together like tape.

Ugly Gift

By Isabella 

Last year for my brother’s b-day I decided

To get him a gift I didn’t have much

Money but I bought him something

With what I had then I give him it

He unwrapped it… then he saw it…

He started laughing, he loved it!

They were Spongebob underwear

It was weird but special 

At the same time. 



“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.