June 16, 2019

2019 Merit Award
By Lucas Cunningham

I felt my head — with wings of silk
Off of my shoulders fly
It chirped — but once — before the Dusk
Did fill the auburn sky

I thought to think I could not think
Forsaken was my Mind —
And in its place beneath my neck
The Face it left behind

Blind and bereft — all that was Left
Once nightward thoughts had flown —
A gasping mouth — upon my Heart
A face but left Alone

I know not now where flew my Head
Nor how it felt to Die —
But I know grief — the Hunger of
The Anthropophagi

. . . . .
*Copyright 2019 by Lucas Cunningham. Broadside illustrated by Angela Boyle.

. . . . .
Lucas Cunningham is a senior at Sehome High School. He will be attending Pomona College, where he plans to study environmental science and creative writing. This is his first published poem, but he hopes to pursue more writing opportunities in the future.

“Anthropophagi” was inspired by the author’s AP Lit class. While reading Othello, the class stumbled upon a particularly intriguing illustration, and so the “anthropophagi” became a kind of motif throughout the year. The poem is written in the style of Emily Dickinson, but its heart will always remain with Ms. Nyman’s 3rd period class.



June 9, 2019

2019 Merit Award
By Porter Chesbrough, Grade 6

Going everywhere
On the earth
Every day
For there are places to go.

. . . . .
*Copyright 2019 by Porter Chesbrough. Broadside illustrated by Megan Carroll.

. . . . .
My name is Porter Chesbrough, I am in 6th grade, and I go to Whatcom Middle School. I am 12 years old, and I am an active kid, I like to ski, run, mountain bike, doodle, play soccer, and more. I do not really have much experience in writing poetry.

I wrote this poem for a poetry unit in my 6th grade language arts class. Mr. Owens is a great teacher and inspired me. It is a cinquain poem about people, animals, and other things going everywhere.


May 26, 2019

2019 Walk Award
by Margaux Barber, Kindergarten

Bones are teeth.
Bones are bloody.
Bones are in my body.

. . . . .
*Copyright 2019 by Margaux Barber. Broadside illustrated by Angela Boyle.

Attention Whatcom teens!

January 22, 2019

Whatcom County teens in grades 6-12 are invited to enter their original poetry for inclusion in A Forest of Words 2019, a teen poetry anthology, which will be distributed to area schools and libraries. Accepted poets receive a copy of the book (and bragging rights!) if their work is accepted for publication. A panel of library staff and area teens select poems based on originality, creativity, and craft.

The deadline is Friday, March 15, 2019.

The guidelines are here.

(And of course, don’t forget to submit your poem to the Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest, which is open for submissions during the month of March from poets of all ages .)

new voices

December 28, 2018

In the spirit of the season, and to usher in the new year, Pelican Bay Books hosts eight young poets, all current or former students of Anacortes High School. Come hear Anna Prewitt, Addi Garner (Poetry Out Loud 2017 Washington State winner and 2018 honorable mention), John Harrison, Geoffrey Hamilton, Alex Hanesworth, Layne Woodward, Will McCracken, and Jade Carter. The reading starts at 7:00pm tonight, Friday, December 28, 2018.


December 9, 2018

2018 Merit Award
By Allie Haugen, grade 10

i will write words you do not like
i will write words you do not agree with
& i will write the words i am afraid to say aloud

but i am not you.
you see, we do not have the same mind

we must disagree
but i will not be made small.

do not misunderstand,
listen closely

my voice is just as valid as yours
i will not be a duplicated version of you

i do not want to be you.
i want to be me

. . . . .
Allie Haugen has never published or even thought of writing poetry until now. The first poem she wrote won this contest. She currently lives with her parents in the county, cheering for the Meridian Trojans and writing whenever she gets a chance.

“underestimated” was inspired by everything that I have yet to write. Reading Rupi Kaur and R.H. Sin made me realize that poetry did not have to be boring and complicated. Poetry did not have to be like what we read in school. I could write something of my own. This is the beginning of everything to come.

. . . . .
*Copyright 2018 by Allie Haugen. Broadside illustrated by Angela Boyle.

I’m Just A Gal*

December 2, 2018

2018 Merit Award
By Megan Gillikin, grade 4

I’m just a gal walking into town,
Don’t really care if people stare.
With my big pink bright purse,
I hold the universe.
With my dark shiny blue coat
I don’t have to gloat.
With my bright yellow boots,
I turn and stare and there I see another me.
I’m just a gal walking in to town.

. . . . .
Hi, my name is Megan Gillikin. I attend Happy Valley Elementary. I love spending time outdoors and with my family. Some of my hobbies are drawing, climbing trees, writing, and swimming.

Inspiration for writing “I’m Just a Gal” came to me when in Texas while driving across country with my mom. We stopped at a gas station and the attendant called me, gal. As I looked about I noticed how people spoke with one another and that many wore cowboy boots. At the time, I had bought a big pink purse to hold a lot of toys so I wouldn’t be bored in the car and I felt I held the Universe.

I’m very happy my poem was selected, I hope you enjoy it.

. . . . .
*Copyright 2018 by Megan Gillikin. Broadside illustrated by Kim Wulfestieg.

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