Why? Because.

Because of testing some classes ran long and some short, but that didn’t stop Taft 8th Graders from penning their own ‘Because’ poem using Yannis Ritsos’ List Poem, ‘Because’  as a jumping off point. We talked about how the poem all the sudden shifts gears at the last line, creating the poem’s turn or volta. Here is some of the work which resulted.


Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period 1

Hannah B.

Because the sun awoke from the slumber
Because the flowers woke up to the colors of the world
Because the clouds opened up towards the sky
Because the glass crinkled with life
Because the houses started breathing
Because the cars shake awake
For this reason I say, ‘Good Morning.’

Anywhere Except Taft
Morgan W.

Because the pigeons are searching for food
Because the cars are rushing to get to work
Because the trees are bare like hairless cats
Because the kids are slowly walking into the building
Because the sky is so empty
Because the ‘tennis court’ is stained with mud
This is why I would be anywhere else

Because the sun rising to the east,
Because the students walking the building late
Because the cars rolling by
Because the clouds going slowly over our heads
Because the 2 zipping by
Because all of these are in sync
in a never ending cycle

Julia S.

Because the lot was sealed with crime scene tape
because the tension in the
air grew thicker than concrete,
because the trigger was
pulled and fired,
because the bullet pierced
through his chest,
because the Taft community
is strong yet hurt
for this, and for not a single
justified reason, we lost a
member of our school’s family.
R.I.P. Anthony

Siobhan L.

Because the branches are bare with no leaves
Because the car on the freeway beeps at another
Because the hurry of some students
Because the grass is patching with dirt
Because the distance looks so far away
for this, is the reason for my sadness

Alexandra J.

Because the high schoolers walked in well past 8
Because the expressway is rusted and cracked
Because the bungalow garages are empty
Because only seagulls inhabit the soccer fields,
Because garbage cans line the worn brick,
Because the Willis Tower can barely be seen through the fog,
Because the trees are bare in April like a broken promise
For this dreadful scenery made it hard to wake up this morning.


Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
3rd Period

Alejandra V.

Because goodbyes are hard
Because I was vulnerable
Because I was a fool
Because you made fake promises
Because I behaved,
For this, only for this, I got hurt.

Peyton K.

Because it did not snow today
Because the wind is breezy and light
Because the sky stayed a blunt light
Because the trees showed no blossoms
Because the car parked in the lot
For this reason, I went to school.

Anya P.

Because the grass has been sprinkled
with the morning dew
Because there is a man carrying
a crumpled yellow package
Because there is a lonely log
alone in the sea of green grass
Because the shadow of the misty
ladder changes with the position
of the sun
Because the temperature is as cold
as ice

Eddy P.

Because, we beat Volta (our flag football team game) 45-26
Because, we predicted many times
Because, we had good players on our team
Because, we advanced to play the playoffs
Because, our team had faith
Because, we all got along
For this, Taft Flag Football 2015-2016 will be the best.

Samia K.

Because the trees are barren
Because the grass is dry
Because the leaves rustle in the wind
Because the field is empty
I sit and enjoy nature, even if there is
nothing to offer.


Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
6th Period

Sophia M.

Because frozen water was falling from the clouds
Because the wind was singing in the window
Because a rainbow’s colors were bleeding onto the blue
Because the grass is turning green
Because the sun was turning bright
For this, for only this reason, I called to you

Kieran E.

Because the cars were stuck in traffic
Because the trees were leafless, swaying in the wind
Because the grass was frosted over and crunched when you stepped
Because the sidewalk was uneven
Because the flood lights were as bright as the sun
Because the buildings stood tall
That is the reason that I stared in awe.

Milo L.

Because I can not see
Because I can not hear
Because I can not feel
Because I can not taste
Because I can not smell
Because I can not think
I am not human.

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
7th Period

Kelly T.

Because the leaves lay anywhere but the trees
Because the weather can’t decide what to do
Because the patches of grass dirty your shoes
Because nature seems to be stuck in thought. confused
Because nobody can decide what to wear or to love
it or hate it.
What if they can love it and hat it at the same

Michael A.

Because the barren trees provide only shade
because the dirt creates anger
because the concrete causes pain
because the cars cause noise
because the world is not a good place
For this, only for this I hide you

Edin H.

Because the building stood alone among a field
Because the worn down dirt path was no longer used
Because the child walked home alone
Because the mother sat alone on the musty couch
Because all the hopes and dreams
All of these things are hopeless and spirally
Which is why I don’t feel alone

Deena A.

Because the trees are bare
Because the grass is brown
Because there are no flowers
Because it still snows
Because the wind always blows
This is why there is global warming.

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
8th Period

Daniela G.

Because its sunny and nice outside,
Because the leaves on trees are growing again,
Because the flowers are blooming,
Because the birds are flying and chirping,
Because you have family and friends who love you,
Appreciate the people in your life,
Because you never know when they’ll be gone.

Jessica W.

Because the bird was separated from the flock
because the sun shine brilliantly
because the flower blooms first dies first,
because the cloudless sky
because the bare trees from the long cold winter,
because they all hold a meaning,
for this, I fell in love with you.

Paige C.

Because the trees were barren from a long winter,
because the sun was beating down upon the ground,
because the glare on the ground was deadly,
because the sky was as blue as my backpack
because the people might never come back
because the grass was on the line of life and death
because the cars were driving like they were running away,
For this, only for this reason, I cannot stay.

Sunny E.

Because the rain fell relentlessly
Because the wind blew with the night’s rage
Because the details of the castle were
squelched to pieces of liberation
Because all the clouds seemed maternal, yet
Because the elusive sea was flirting and
the empire was ashes

Byron A.

Because of the bus I come to school
Because of the stand I eat
Because of the field I move my feet
Because of the people I greet
Because of the sun I see
Because of the cars we speed
These are the things I need.

Ferrando M.

Because of the sky is bright and blue
Because the trees have no leaves on them
Because the cars parked outside sitting there with nothing to do
Because the grass so bright like the sky
Because the dirt is embedded in to the ground
Is the reason why I sit here and stare out the window





“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.