With a Little Help from My Friends

Last week, we read and discussed E. E. Cummings’ “maggie and milly and molly and may.” Before doing so, I asked if anything looked unusual; students noticed the use of lowercase lettering throughout—except for the last stanza, which signaled something different must be happening there. Each of the previous stanzas describes what the four characters are doing while playing at the beach, and the class imagined those activities (finding a shell, a starfish, and a stone, as well as being “chased by a horrible thing / which raced sideways,” which we determined must be a crab) as well as identified the poem’s internal and more familiar end-line rhymes. As far as the conclusion, the last line says, “It’s always ourselves we find in the sea,” and we pondered the relationship of the four characters: sisters, maybe; friends, definitely.

That segued to the prompt: compose a poem about friendship. Here are some examples.

Ms. Yim, 4th Grade

Jasiah B.

Jasiah and Joshua
went to the park.

Somebody named Heyson
came along.

Heyson was Jasiah and
Joshua’s friend.

They couldn’t decide what
to play.

They decided to make a
group name.

They all made a name
that they agreed on.

The group was called
The Scrambled Eggs.

Danielle E.

Maylen, Kaelyn, Kaylee. Best friends forever and ever
never break never ever
stay together forever and ever
and live happily ever after

Rania M.

At school I play with my
friends at recess and talk with
them at lunch.

Me and My Friends
Shiv P.

Me and my friend play soccer. We
play together and we sit together
at lunch. My friend lets me play
with him every day even though it is full.

My friends include me in every
game. My friends help me when I need

Zoya P.

Once me
and my
friends went
to the beach

and then
my friend
saw a shell

that sang
so sweetly.

Friendship: Daksh and Dhrumil
Daksh P.

Dhrumil is my friend and reading and writing
is nice. And Dhrumil and your game is soccer.

Dhrumil’s best friend Eliseo and best
friend Nawfal your friend and Dhrumil’s third
friend is Shamsan.

Every day they come to school and
go to after school and then go home
and do homework with their laptops.



“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.