Archives for posts with tag: high school

By Taylor Mali

I walked into the classroom and straight to my chair,
But when I reached for my pen, it just wasn’t there!
I had no pen! or crayon! or pencil!
I was stuck before class without a writing utensil.

I could have asked the teacher (if I had dared,)
But I knew she would have said, “You’re unprepared!”
So to be diplomatic and avoid the fight
I quickly turned to the girl on my right,

Do you possibly have a pen I could borrow?
I’ll use it today and have it back by tomorrow.
“Oh! Furshur! What kind? I’ve got plenty.”
And she turned around with a handful of twenty.

I really don’t care what color or style,
I’ll take the fountain pen, I said with a smile.
“Oh, you don’t want that one. It comes out all ugly.
And it’s made of pure gold,” she said to me smugly.

Then how bout the blue?
“No, that one hops.”
Okay, maybe the green?
“Comes out in glops.”
“I’m afraid it’s having trouble connecting.”
“I’ll need it if we do any in-class correcting.”
Look, I said, my voice filling with fear,
Just gimme a pen before the teacher gets here!

“But this one always comes out in tons,
The yellow one skips and the purple one runs.
When the brown one dries, it looks real icky,
And the orange one’s covered with something sticky.
This one’s for emergencies (in case I get confused)
‘cause it’s clean and it’s fresh and it’s never been used.
I keep this one for quizzes ‘cause it brings good luck,
And the ballpoint’s splotchy and the cap is stuck.
This one’s empty, with the silver band,
And the felt-tip will leak all over your hand.
This one’s cracked, and that’s gone berserk!
And that would be perfect but it doesn’t work.
But here! Take this one! This one’s fine!
Oh wait…I’m sorry, this one’s mine.”
I think she went on but I couldn’t have cared.
I decided it was better to go unprepared.


Visit poet Taylor Mail at his website See him read “On Girls Lending Pens” at

Photo: My Life as a Bargainista, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

by Zander

The man Jay Gatsby
Only wants to be happy
Has the dream of an American
To have a wife, he’s a fan 
All he wants is Daisy
Just the thought of her makes him hazy
Longing for Green Light
Tom can only watch in spite
The new friend of Nick Carraway
Linking him and Daisy from across the bay
Luxurious Living in the Egg
Having lavish parties on the reg
Driving up in his Rolls Royce
Saying “old sport” with his voice
Having Daisy is his last hope
Without her he wouldn’t be able to cope
Always a man with a lot of time
Getting around with his buddy Wolfsheim
Some say he is a man of crime
Some say he bootlegs wine
Trying his luck in a love triangle
In the end all he could do was untangle
Shot by Mr. Wilson on a pool float
He then lay dead in a blood-filled moat
He leaves a legacy of a mysterious fellow
Who ended his life lying around mellow
This is the story of a man who was great
Who died in a pool with a life full of hate


“Great Gatsby” by Zander appears on (written by teens since 1989).