As part of Colchester School District’s literacy efforts (you can read our five-part primer about literacy initiatives here), we are involved with the Young Writers Project (YWP)—an organization focused upon aiding better student writing.
One of our students, Colchester High School senior Chiara Evans, was recently honored by the YWP for her submission “What Makes Up Dreams.” The piece is part of YWP’s Anthology 4, selected for inclusion from nearly 12,000 writing submissions and 2,000 pieces of visual art, representing the best work of more than one hundred students from across Vermont and New Hampshire.
This is not the first time that Chiara has been honored by the YWP; in fact, the YWP has recognized her approximately twenty times since her sophomore year through various outlets in addition to her most recent honor, including publication in Anthology 3, the Colchester Sun, Seven Days, and the Burlington Free Press. She hopes that some of her writing will also be included in the YWP’s Anthology 5 collection next year.
“She is attune to the subtleties of language and no matter what she writes, carefully chooses each word,” educator Wayland Cole, head of CHS’s Humanities department, said of Chiara. “She loves words and language,” said Mr. Cole. “She is the rare student who truly cares about how and why each word fits with the next to create meaningful ideas … she reads well and widely, which clearly has helped her to become a better writer.”
Chiara’s anthologized poem, which she said was inspired by a YWP writing prompt about dreams, was written—incredibly—in a single draft without revisions.
“What Makes Up Dreams”
Conglomerate messages wound up in the day’s thoughts
A simple process of untying your own knots
The best objects of your desire
A wish for something better
A touch of love
A tear shed for something gone wrong
Allow yourself to take a journey into your own mind
Look at yourself through your own eyes
And see what others see
Go floating through your scatterbrains
And don’t let anyone take away your childish wonder
The best entertainment is one you make
Wrapped up in memories and wishes
To go far away
To have something new
Or just a better life one day
Dreams fulfill us and take us through sleep
Seemingly short but ever so long
Conscious but unconscious you sleep
While being carried off farther and farther
Don’t get lost
Dreams will haunt you, make you laugh
Dreams will love you, and send tears to your eyes
But you have to remember not to get caught
Hold on to reality
Because dreams are just your brain
Figuring things out.
Chiara plans to pursue higher education in bioscience following her graduation from Colchester High School; she is particularly interested in exploring a career as a biomedical engineer or in pharmacology.
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