The Power Of Place

There are times in life when beauty is found in anguish 



Peace cannot be kept by force: it can only be achieved by understanding

~Alebert Einstein

There's always a place where people go to seek refuge from their challenges. My haven is in the vast resplendent woods of the great Presidential Range. It’s been my experience that hurt feelings seem to wash away like a curtain opened up in the morning sunlight enveloping my entire body. In the vast mountains, you may feel alone, but eventually, you will feel a sense of one with nature. I felt this feeling the most on the Franconia Ridge trail, which in my opinion is the most exquisite of hikes on the range. I was both in awe of the range, and quite scared of the massive mountains towering over me.

     My friends and I were ready for the challenge but we're not expecting the prodigious emotions that this trial had in store for us. Days prior, I was at camp walking through the enormous dining hall as my friend Hayze and I signed up for the 9-mile hike. While we were giddy with excitement, we were also so anxious about the challenge. I had spent years training on lesser trails for this one moment. Eventually, the day arrived. I woke up early, showered, brushed my teeth, and collected my muddy boots from under my bed. With a deep breath, I exited the bunk and walked up the front lawn to the van.

`On the ride, we stopped at Dunkin Donuts, which ordinarily puts me in a gleeful mood, however, while everyone was ordering, I vomited in the parking lot as a result of car sickness. To make matters worse, we weren’t even halfway there! Despite these unfortunate events, I was still ready to defeat the challenge of the Franconia Ridge trail.

    When we arrived at the mountain, I simultaneously opened my mouth as my mouth spread wide open. This was personal. This hike will be the one thing in my way before MT. Washington. As I started the journey the activity of the trail left me exhausted but, I was also struck with the sheer beauty of green woods, clear glass rivers, and green leaves which left me in a reposed state. Hiking up Mt. Lafayette, I wasn’t thinking about how hard it was I dispelled those emotions away. I was too invested in the views of the mountain range and the oblique and salient rocks to think of the physical pain I was in. I felt a sense of tranquility wash over my tired body. When I trekked closer to the top there was a mash of boulders that I was about to climb up.

    As I trudged up the boulders I was staring at MT. Washington to my left. When I finally made it to the summit, I felt a sense of accomplishment that I had never felt before, but the hike was not over yet. As I hiked over the mountain ridge, I saw a sea of green below me. I felt amazing. As I reflect on that day, that mountain and the experience continue to give me so much happiness. I believe that all people should strive to find the place that brings them peace because it makes you feel like you’ve never felt before. Mt. Lafayette and the journey up to the summit is my peaceful place. What’s yours?


The Power Of Friendship

By- Jacob Hershenow 


                                    True friends are never apart, mabey in distance but never in heart ~ Helen Keller

There are moments in life where you feel alone, but friends are always there for you. For me, my friends always keep me company. when I was down in the dumps, when I was angry, I turned to my friends to give me joy. 

My friends Jack and Jacob were there for me when I was upset. They were always there for me. When I was mistreated and disheveled my friends were there for me. I was so angry, so sad, so lost.

Back in kindergarten; when our minds were fresh with joy and imagination. I was not like the other kids, I was shy and lonely. Every day when we had recess all the kids would run to the playground. I would run to the giant slide and sit in a blue tube with a plastic widow. I would watch kids play and have fun with their friends. But for me, I felt safe alone. That all changed on one fateful day when two kids walked into the tube their names were Jack and Jacob. We eventually became great friends.

 My friends gave me hope, a reason to care. I had so many fake friends, but when you found a real friend you should cherish them and don’t take it for granted. I found that friends give you joy. No matter what you do your friends will be there for you. I was desperate for a friend and when I found one they always ended up not caring about me. 

But now I care about them and they care about me.cherish your  friends, they're always going to be by your side


Family Is All You Need

By~ Jacob Hershenow

Family’s are primal forces of protection, belonging, and joy.


“There is no doubt that it is around the family and the home that all the greatest virtues… are created, strengthened and maintained.”

~Winston Churchill



It is in times of despair you seek virtue from the primal force of family. It was my family that gave me this precious feeling of affinity and inseparability. When I was alone; lost in my feelings. The sharp shards of reality sliced through my emotions. When my forsaken life was left in pieces, my family was the superglue that held my emotions together. When my emotions are broken, my mom's arms engulf me and my dad runs around the corner and hugs me; I’m home. I’m where I want to be. It didn't matter that I had been bullied that day, it didn't matter that I had failed the quiz, it didn't matter that I had lost my sports game. It only matters that I was back home. My day had a meaning, a purpose, a reason. I’m home, and safe. It only matters that I can always trust my family to be behind me and to comfort me. Family is all that you need.                                                                                                              

Poet X imaginary letter.

Hi, how's it going? Is school going well, how is you sports team doing? I haven’t seen you in the longest time. Since you went to Belgium I’ve been kinda lonely. I’m doing well though. School is going well.

   I started reading this really good book. The book is called Poet X and it has won 3 awards. It’s about a girl named Xiomara Batista who lives in New York. The story makes you feel all the emotions that the girl is feeling. The book is written in a poem style and each page has many themes. All the words are written in italics.The girl is talked to in demeaning ways and she feels like she’s nothing but what people see and think of her. 

    When I read this book I feel upset that people go through these things. I am put in a perspective that makes me see the other side of things like sexism and certain expectations that people are subjected to. It’s not something that I read for joy but I read it for perspective and my teacher makes me. One thing that I don’t like doing while I read it is highlighting different themes. I just want to read a book and not have to think about certain themes. I’d rather feel the emotions of the story. There were a few quotes that I found very meaningful. Some of them were, “all the things I wish I could have said make poems from the sharp feelings inside.” And, “ My fists became fists for him.” I thought these were very meaningful. 

“It happens when I’m sitting on the stoop, It happens when I’m turning the corner, it happens when I forget too be on the guard, it happens all the time. I should be used to it, I shouldn’t get s0 angry, when boys and sometimes grown-ass-men talk to me however they want”/After/

 This really showed how emotions can make a person crack under the pressure of society. Emotions can control peoples thoughts and actions, when that happens a person can cursed by their emotions. The book is very deep. I can't stop reading though. The way that the author makes the thoughts of the girl so deep and thoughtful is fantastic.

    I miss you and it's been such a long time since we’ve played 1 on 1 basketball or video games. Let’s make sure to keep in touch. I hope to see you soon.


Sincerely, Your friend, Jacob Hershenow




Technology will solve problems. It will also cause issues for the ill-starred citizens that have been “removed” from their positions. Technology will take the job of someone. Someone who needs, someone who wants. It will be efficient and free of cost to the affluent people of this forsaken world. It will reek havoc.

  The future will hold so much joy and so much sadness. Our success is dependent on technology. A technological grid controlled by the people on top. The “kings” of our world. So many jobs will be stripped away from society. A box of scraps will end up being more useful than a human. 

    I want to be a doctor. In 20-30 years robots might be doing my job. My point is society is inducing its own demise. It’s demise is ambition. Inventors are so ambitious to create the next best thing they cant stop to think of ticking time bump the strapped to the earth.

    Technology will eventually ruin us all.


Windsor Mountain


Jacob H. Hershenow

Fitz English

Windsor Mountain Essay


Windsor Mountain 

A thrilling adventure through the New Hamster woods


Believe you can and you’re halfway there.

“By: Teddy Rosevelt “


It’s Sunday night. I’m playing video games without a care in the world, and then my eyes suddenly pop open as I remember that I forgot to pack for my school trip. I frantically run around my room gathering supplies for my trip tomorrow. I shove everything in my bag, jump in my bed and doze off. Waking up, I grab everything for my trip, eat breakfast, and jump in the car. When I get to school I’m anxious to get on our way, but we wait, and wait, and wait.  Eventually, the bus arrives, and I quickly walk up the three steps, and sit down oblivious to what I was going to experience at Windsor Mountain.


The first full day of camp begins. I step out of my dirt-filled bed, and take a deep breath.  The cold air shocks my lungs as I realize that today’s the day I meet my challenge of the menacing dive tower at Windsor Mountain. I sit on the deck after breakfast, waiting for my activity to be called. Yes! We have waterfront for our activity. Despite the excitement of an activity that I really enjoy, I’m struck with looming fear of the menacing dive tower. My thoughts were interrupted with the clang of the bell signifying the beginning of our activity. I almost leapt out of my seat with joy, because I knew that my moment to test myself was almost here. I took a deep breath to relax my mind and body. My deep breath causes me to fall behind the pack of kids as they run down the hill as ecstatic as ever.  Without another moment of thought I ran trying to catch up to them. I jumped in the water with my classmates and swam as fast as I could through the vast dark waters of Black Pond unaware of what was about to happen. I swam to the dive tower and felt like a guppy in the ocean, waiting to be swallowed by the big shark, but I gingerly stepped up the ladder, each step resulting in an increasing amount of adrenaline and fear. I slowly looked over the edge, and it was clear to me that it was way too high, but it's too late to turn back now, and everyone was chanting “go jump, you can do it”.  With complete resolve, I took 5 steps back and threw myself off the tower. I looked down, and it seemed like I wasn’t moving.  I felt like I was floating in the air. My eyes shut, and bang! I hit the water with more force than a speeding car hitting a brick wall, but the joy of overcoming my fear won the day. This really made me proud. Even though the immense fear made me want to back down, I didn’t give up and I jumped. I finally overcame my fears and I remained triumphant. My anticipation was at an all-time high for what I will do next.


The long day of activities are over, and I’m so happy that I get to relax and start fishing. Little did I know I was about to be bored out of my mind. I ran down the path to the waterfront where I saw my advisor. I walked up to him and suggested that we go sailing, and, while on the boat, we can fish. It’s always a great feeling when someone accepts your suggestion, and in this case he was open-minded to my idea.  My teacher set up the sail boat, and 15 minutes later the boat was ready, and we hopped on. I was happy to sail, but I’ve always hated that feeling of cold water pooled on the seat that makes me shiver as my swimsuit absorbs the pond water. Despite being uncomfortable with a soggy and cold swimsuit, we set sail to Blueberry Island. To our dismay we realized that there was almost no wind, so we went slower than a 100 year old turtle. Either way, I was gonna catch that fish, so I cast the rod over and over, but no fish took a bite. Eventually we made it to the coast of the pond, so we could continue trying to catch some fish. I cast it over and over again, but still nothing. I wasn’t going to give up yet, so I kept fishing. My friends in their kayaks pass by and say that they’ve caught 5 fish already. I faked my congratulations to them, as I wonder if I’m going to catch one. I kept that optimistic mindset until the bells’ familiar clang rang through my head 20 seconds later. Luckily the boat was moving slower than a caterpillar so I kept casting, and casting, and casting until we slid to the shore. Not a single fish was caught, and it felt like our boat moved 200 feet in total. Even though we didn’t catch anything and barely moved, I still had a good time. The long day was almost over and we were oblivious to the calm and mellow moment of the day yet to be experienced. 

Dinner was over, and the sun's rays began to cast a shadow over the dark waters of Black Pond. The bell rang. We all ran to gather around the campfire filled with anticipation of what we’ll do next. We were so excited and happy to even be able to have a campfire. I got to the bench, but was met with a wretched feeling of the stiff, and uncomfortable bench underneath my bottom.  The firmness of the hard wood grabbed a strong grip of my attention, until I heard it. A soft smooth voice cut through the noise of all the kids talking along with a delicate strum of the guitar.  As the kids began to quiet, we heard and felt the music wafting through us, sending shivers through our spines.  Our minds began to rest and relax.  The ambience of the campfire let us enjoy our time here all the more! As the melodic noise comes to an end, we’re met with the sound of a million crickets chirping, and rattling our eardrums reminding us of how lucky we are to be here under the pines of Camp Windsor Mountain. A new song started shortly after the first one ended, and we began to sway.  Our arms interlocked as we became a truly strong, and united community.  This is where memories are made, and last a lifetime.  We are one group of kids enjoying and appreciating this precious moment. We are one. We really connected and we all loved this experience. This moment marked the end of a journey, and helped us understand how lucky we were to be able to be here.

During this journey, I was subjected to fear and excitement. Have you


My passions

I Love The Feeling

My journey through the sport of basketball 



“To succeed you have to believe in something with such passion that it becomes a reality”- Anita Roddick

By: Jacob Hershenow 

    The feeling of stepping on the court, it makes my spine shiver. I love the feeling. I love the feeling of proving people wrong, I love the feeling of winning. I love these feelings and so, so many more. I get these feelings from basketball, a sport where you dribble the ball and shoot the ball into the net, simple right. But it's so much more than that.

    It’s joy, it's sadness, it's what makes me happy. No sister yapping nothing. Just the game. The ball bouncing on the imperfections on the pavement to the smooth soft feeling of a swish. It’s my world, my rules, my way. I love the sport of basketball. Basketball; what makes me happy.

    I started off playing rec basketball. Kids running around headlessly, when a simple behind the back made me the best player on the court. I could do so much then and I felt like a king. A king who couldn’t be beat. Out of nowhere the grey team came and I finally had my rival. A rival that would last for a lifetime.

    Basketball was trial and failure for me. Like when I didn’t make the 5th grade travel basketball team. The game meant the world to me. I didn’t stop trying and I made it to AAU basketball where either you find the best team or a team full of kids who were diminutive compared to us. 

    Then a travel basket came around. I made the team and had a solid 2 minutes or less of playing time a game.The next year I made the C team. I was so angry but I ended up playing very well. Then the spot light that shined so brightly on my dream began to dim. I stopped playing. 

    Years passed and eventually I got back into playing pickup basketball at camp. I feel back in love and now my sport is back and I’m ready to play the hell out of it. Like I always wanted to do.

My Goals


I’m lost
Stuck in my own misery 
I’m lost in a vast cave with no way out
I’m always hiding from my challenges 
My challenges fill me with greed
My life filled with wants and cants
Kids walking down the streets
They have my dream
But they don’t think twice about it
Laughing and smiling with their friends
I’m running a marathon
A marathon with no end in sight
A dream 
A dream with no way of completing
I’m  an outcast
I’m at the bottom of the food chain 
Like a rat that stands out from all the mice
I’m desperate
I’m like a lost dog
I stand on the road and I’m filled with greed
I'm hiding in darkness like a turtle in its shell hiding from predators 
My mind melts like ice cream
My ego fades away in the darkness of my mind
I'm back to the startling line with no end in sight
My goals
My goals are un achievable

When I received the information about the slam poem I was not happy to say the least. I was procrastinating the entire class and almost all of Saturday. On Saturday night I started to write my poem. I wanted to have a people that would impact the listener but leave a sense of mystery. I thought of it as a way that someone can think of their goal or challenge and copy and paste it into the poem and if they can relate. I think that I could of had a little bit more description of my life but I wanted people to understand that everyone has their challenges