The poems featured in today's District Weekly are some of the winning entries in the recent 1999 Parkmont Poetry Festival. The 17th annual contest, judged each year by a panel of poets, drew more than 800 entries from students in public and private schools throughout the city.

This year's winners included 20 students from middle schools and 20 students from high schools. The 40 winners, joined by parents and teachers, read their poems at a special recital last month at Parkmont School, a private school in Northwest Washington. The contest is designed to give students a chance to express themselves through poetry, and their winning entries are published in the festival's annual poetry booklet.

Monday

I am dancing in a new year

I am leaving my old dancing shoes

Behind

I am getting new dancing shoes

I am cha cha-ing into a new year

While everybody else is learning

How to dance

I am dancing like the people

On TV

I am dancing in a new year.

Antonia Garrett

Seventh Grade

Garnet Patterson Middle School

I Am Dancing in a New Year

Today is Monday,

Manic Monday.

Monday is bad,

A bad day,

A tired day,

A day where you think why is it not over yet.

Finally it is, and all you want to do is sleep.

That is Monday

Tuesday is much better.

Jack S. Marash

Ninth Grade

Lab School of Washington

Happiness

A blue shirt

and black jeans

with dress shoes

Everyday.

Happiness sleeps

in a silk shirt

with a sock

for a pillow.

Happiness eats

Chinese food

Vanilla cookies,

And butter pecan ice cream

with chopsticks.

Happiness drives

A 4 door

Ford truck

with 4 wheel drive.

Lynnard Richard

Seventh Grade

Sousa Middle School

For Jesus' Sake

If this is love, why does it feel so funny?

If this is love, how come he's acting like a dummy?

If this is love, why does he come home late and leave home early?

If this is love, why the demanding voice when he arrives home?

Is this your way of showing me your love?

Why am I here?

Should I leave?

Should I go?

For the kids' sake I let him stay.

For my sake make him leave.

For Jesus' sake help me decide.

Please!

Lillian Hunt

11th Grade

Richard Milburn Academy

Wasteland

Empty with no life

at all

covered with

Dirt

old plants drooped

over and brown

but in the corner

of the field

pops out a little

green bud.

James Riddleberger

Sixth Grade

Georgetown Day School

My Real Name

I get called

Shorty girl

Skinny little girl

Chicken legs

Apple head

And mouse

I hate people

Calling me

All that stuff

Especially

Chicken legs

My real name

Is

Sunflower Special

Jessica Lopez

Seventh Grade

Lincoln Middle School

Hey You

Hey You,

sitting out in the cold.

You must be freezing. I can't stand

being out here for five minutes, but You,

You live out here.

You with your tattered sign and your flimsy blanket.

I, with my thin, yet substantial jacket

I want to help You.

I want to give You food, but I have none with me.

I want to give You money even though I can't be sure

You would buy what You really need.

(I don't have any money with me either.)

But until I can take You to a shelter,

or remember to bring You a sandwich,

or keep change in my pocket for You,

all I can say is,

stay strong. That, among other things, is what You are.

People try to ignore You.

They walk past like they can't see You,

but I see too much

that is being lost.

Emily Sala

Eighth Grade

Holy Trinity School

Companion

Suddenly--like the loss of a loved one

or

the changing of the seasons

As a smile changes to a frown,

sun moves through the sky,

two hearts combine and fall in love,

or tomorrow turns into today

As hope turns your reality

into an illusion,

understanding becomes confusion,

a sunny day turns to rain,

or a friend becomes an enemy

As a promise is broken,

focus is lost, someone makes a difference,

or a speaker pauses to listen

As night turns to day or a lost soul

finds its way--I found my companion

My companion is

Me

Brian S. Jones

11th Grade

Benjamin Banneker High School

< > ><

SHE'S HEAVEN.

I'M HELL.

SHE'S FAST.

I'M SLOW.

SHE'S HYPER.

I'M MELLOW.

SHE'S GOOD.

I'M BAD.

SHE'S DAY.

I'M NIGHT.

SHE'S CONSERVATIVE.

I'M LIBERAL.

SHE'S RAP.

I'M ROCK.

SHE'S DOMESTIC.

I'M AN IMPORT.

SHE'S SAD.

I'M HAPPY.

SHE'S WORK.

I'M PLAY.

SHE'S EARLY.

I'M LATE.

SHE'S MATH.

I'M ENGLISH.

SHE'S LAND.

I'M WATER.

SHE'S POSITIVE I'M NEGATIVE.

I LOVE HER

SHE LOVES ME

OPPOSITES ATTRACT

Oved Sofair

11th Grade

Lab School of Washington

Special Place

behind my eyes

I live in the sky

all around me are

birds

clouds and

blue music

I have no neighbors

the sky is all mine

In the morning I'll make it rain

so I can shower and be clean

I have the red sun for lunch and

hail for dessert

when the moon comes

I play with the stars

no cursing

no fighting

no bad expressions

here

I am myself

Inside I feel like banging on pots

family lasts forever.

Lois Jenkins

Sixth Grade

MacFarland WritersCorps