2016 Junior Authors Poetry Contest Winner Category 5

Anya Ambarish, Age 11, Virginia, USA


The Journey

Bare feet running
But giving chase is no one
Only what he is running to
And what he is leaving behind

She sits on the train
Watching the ink sky and the stars
Every star granted her a wish
But not one would ever come true

His sack bumps against his back
Hollow thumps with every step
Only a reminder
Empty, Empty, Empty

The train screeches and halts
Eyes turned to heaven, she steps off
Away from her only hope
And the silence is deafening

He passes through a forest
Shadows of anger stare menacingly
He runs faster and faster, to get away
But he is only getting closer

Each foot is made of cinder blocks
Weighing her down further and further
As she hikes an endless journey
To finally belong

He finds a bench to rest
Legs of rubber collapsing
And as he sits gasping
A silhouette emerges

She sees a figure
A boy sitting on a bench
Her feeling of isolation gone
She sits beside him

And as they hold hands
Lost in their conversation
The door of isolation
Is finally unlocked


Anya Ambarish

Anya Ambarish

What inspired me to write this poem is looking at old family photos. I thought about my parents, who settled in different states in America but still managed to find each other. This idea was the basis for my poem. Read Anya’s Blog.


6 comments on “2016 Junior Authors Poetry Contest Winner Category 5

  1. Edmund

    This poem is not SO great. I mean it is good, but still Laura, what do you find so interesting in non-rhyming poems. I am sure there must be entries much better than this one. Weren’t there any entries with a rhyming poem? What is so bad in rhyming poems? Besides, non-rhyming poems don’t look like poems. Do you always give a chance to win only to the members? Please do reply.

    • Hi Edmund. You bring up a good point, one that comes up every year it seems. This poem represents the best of the bunch in this age group on the main criteria we have for both the contests and the blog: unity of impression. There are rhyming poems in the top 6. What I have found over the years with both the contests and submission to jaBlog! is that rhyming poems seem to be harder to write well (keeping unity of impression in mind). Remember that there is nowhere to hide in a poem. Any weak line or awkward word choice drops the impact and impression of the whole poem. What happens with rhyming poems is that words are “forced” and meaning falls down through weak or confusing usage. A publishable rhyming poem is hard to write. If you feel so strongly that rhyming poems are the best type of poetry, then I invite you (if you are between the ages of 9 and 21) to write up an article on that topic and submit it to jaBlog! We are accepting submissions until June 15th.

  2. Quintina Smith

    CONGRATULATIONS! I am so proud of you. This is a wonderful and thoughtful poem filled with imagery and symbolism. You definitely have made me proud to be your teacher! Please don’t ever stop writing. It will only get better.

  3. Great poem! Well done :)

  4. Anya Ambarish

    Thank you Dorcas and congratulations to you as well!

  5. Dorcas Wong


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes:

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>