The Lanyard

Why I Chose my WW Fenn Poem

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Poetry may not be for everyone, but at The Fenn School, we have a poetry speaking contest that everyone participates in. This year, I was stumped while looking for a piece. I scrolled through poem after poem on the website, poemminer, that my English made for our class. I didn’t like any of the poems that I was scrolling through, and I scrolled through the entire website before I found the poem that I knew I wanted to do, The Lanyard. The Lanyard is a poem about a man remembering when he made a lanyard for his mother. He talks about how she gave him everything in life, and all that he could repay her with is a lanyard. The other poems had themes that were hidden, and themes that I could not relate to as much. The Lanyard was more straight forward than the other poems, and I could relate to it more than any of the other poems. Not being able to repay your mother, or someone in your life, is a universal theme that most people can relate to. The poems that I looked through before had important themes, but they didn’t have one, straightforward universal theme. I also like the way that the poem, The Lanyard, was written. It used language that I could understand, and it didn’t have hidden meanings. The Lanyard spoke to me from the first time that I read it through. It was the only poem that I felt like I fully understood, and the only poem that I related to. Now that I have started to memorize it, I like it even more, and I can’t wait to recite it.


Writing like Melville

Bonding as a Class 

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Bonding with a group of people is the greatest feeling in the world. This year, our entire small ninth grade class at Fenn, made up of only 26 kids, has bonded and gotten to know each other. In prior years, our grade has been made up of 50 or 60 kids, but the ninth grade class is always smaller. It was sad to see my old friends go, but this year has been much more fun, and we have bonded through activities like hanging out above Mr. Boonisar’s garage. It was a Friday afternoon, and we had just gotten out of lunch. Today, we had baked potatoes (which are not my favorite) and now I thought I had to go to study hall. No one wants to be in Friday study hall, and we would probably be more productive if we went to the gym. That was when I remembered today was Pen to Paper. It was already 1:55 pm, and I had to be there by 2:00 pm. I sprinted down the hallway past the old gym, and took a sharp left out of the glass door that leads to the heads house. I got there, took off my black nike shoes, and sprinted up the stairs. There I saw a beautiful array of snacks, and all of my classmates sitting on the brown couch in front of the TV with the Patriots highlights on and laughing together. I sat right down on the floor, and grabbed some cookies and a sprite. We ended up talking and having fun with each other, together as a grade. That Friday afternoon was fun, and this entire year has been full of bonding and having fun together. Our class has came together, and this has been the most fun year at Fenn yet


New People and Experiences

The Miracle League

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All men live enveloped in whale-lines. All are born with halters round their necks.”

Herman Melville

    Embrace difference and never back down from new experiences. I have always enjoyed new experiences, but one that stands out is volunteering for the Miracle League. The kids there may be different from me, but that does not mean that you can’t bond and have fun with them just like anybody else. It was a Saturday morning and I came down the stairs after putting on my grey Miracle league over my Celtics hoodie. It was my first time working for the Miracle league, an organization that helps kids with special needs come together for a baseball game, and I was nervous. I was going to be paired up with one of the kids from the organization and I did not know what to expect. Would he like me? Would I know what to say? I ate breakfast, got in the car, and we drove over to the Miracle League field in Acton. Right when I got there and met Jack, kid that I was paired with, all of my worries went away. He came in smiling from ear to ear, and I knew that this day was going to be fun. Over the course of the game, we talked, laughed, ran around the bases, and had fun together. At one point we were having so much fun that he even started dancing on the bench. I eventually had to say bye to Jack, but both of us could’ve stayed at that baseball field forever. Jack was very different from me, but that didn’t matter. Our differences did not stop us from aging fun, and I do not know what I was worried about before I arrived at the Miracle League field. Do not shy away from new experiences and people because they are different—you will regret it in the end.


Ignorance is Bliss

Happiness Is All That Matters

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    One questions that many people fantasize about is would you rather be happy and ignorant or wise. In my life experience, I would choose the first option. I believe that it is much more important to be happy in life than to have wisdom. You can still be happy when you are wise, but you could also be sad or depressed. That is not a chance that I would take in my life, and I would choose to be happy over most things in life. Another reason that I would choose to be happy and ignorant is because I do not feel like you need to know or have awareness about every issue, and I don’t think the goal in life is to have knowledge. The goal in life is to be happy. If you are happy, you will always live a good life. If you are wise, their is always a chance that you will be sad, and that chance is not a good risk to take. Finally, ignorance is bliss. If you do not know about something, you will not worry about it. If you do not think about the things wrong with your life, or with the world in general, you will not have any worries. When you are wise, you think about all of the things that are wrong and all of the things that you could have done better. Although wisdom can bring happiness, there is also a chance that it can bring sadness. Living a happy life is the ultimate goal, even if that comes with ignorance.


The Power of Collective Tradition

At the heart of every family tradition is a meaningful experience.”

- Anonymous

    People move on, but traditions never die. One tradition that my family carries on every year is Easter. Each year for Easter, we go up to my Aunt and Uncles house in Connecticut. We eat dinner and hang out, but that is not the best part of Easter; the best part of Easter is when all of the kids have a big easter egg hunt. It was Easter Day, and our family gathered at the beautiful white house on the Rectory School campus. We had just finished our delicious dinner of ham and mashed potatoes. The food tasted amazing, but that is not what I was really looking forward to on this Easter; I was looking forward to the Easter egg hunt. We all took half an hour to digest our food, and then the kids gathered out in the front yard. I already had my eyes on a few eggs, and with the sun setting in the background, my Aunt Marcia yelled, “3, 2, 1, go!” We all sprinted, everyone competing to get the most eggs. My competitive spirit leads me to want to win, and gather the most eggs, but all of the older kids know that we also have to leave some for the younger kids. When it seems like all of the eggs are found, we gather back inside and. count our eggs. I ended up with the least eggs this year, but the Easter egg hunt is not about amount of eggs that you get. It is really about having fun, and bonding for one of the only days we get to see each other. This tradition of having an Easter egg hunt may seem small, but it is very powerful. I look forward to this day every year, and it is still fun for me at the age of 15. It helps me reconnect with people, and have fun with kids of every age. While people get older, and new generations come through, tradition is the one thing that stays strong.


A Child’s Christmas in Wales

Imagination, Figurative Language, and Images and Actions

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Imagination is the golden pathway to everywhere.”

- Terence McKenna

    The narrator rose out of bed, and looked out of the window. Snow covered the ground, and the cats, “sleek and long as Jaguars,” were roaming around the house. In the short story A Child’s Christmas in Wales, by Dylan Thomas, the narrator’s imagination takes him back to a Christmas Day where he remembers his time as a child. This Christmas Day is described by the author through use of figurative language, especially muscular verbs, and images and actions.

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Waste of Time

No Time Is Worth Wasting 

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 Don’t waste your time trying to fix the past because your past is already gone.”

- Jeetash Kevlani

    Time is precious, so do not waste it. In my life, there are not many things that I do with no purpose, but one thing that I do that wastes time is stressing over a test score. When the test is over, there is nothing more that I can do. Even with this thought in my head, I still stress over my score. It was a Friday afternoon, and I just got out of sports. It was the weekend, and most kids were excited. This was not the case for me. I had a math test the last period before lunch and I was still stressing on what my score was going to be. In the back of my head I knew that a there was nothing more I could do, but I was still thinking about things like did I get the right answer for this question, or, how much will this test affect my grade? Eventually I left Fenn and went home for the night, but I could still only think about that math test. That night I played some Fortnite with my friends, but I couldn’t fully enjoy the experience. I was stressing so much, and I couldn’t get the thought out of my head. I knew I had to stop thinking about this, and I knew that if I didn’t stop stressing, this weekend would be worse than school on a Monday morning. Stressing over things like I stressed over this math test is a waste of time. If something is out of your control, don’t keep thinking about it. This one test will not affect your job in the future. This one test will not affect your social life. If it is out of your control, don’t waste your time—forget about it.


Thanksgiving

Give thanks for a little and you will find a lot.”

- Anonymous

Sometimes you must sit back and give thanks. Give thanks for all you have; give thanks for all of the opportunities you have been given, and give thanks for all of the good experiences to come. In my life, I am thankful for a number of things. Sports, experiences, family, school. The thing that I am most thankful for, though, is the friends that I have made here at Fenn. Every moment with them is fun, even if it is as little as playing playing 2 v 2 basketball after school. It was Wednesday afternoon at 2:00 pm, and the Upper School had just gotten out of lunch. I walked up to my Study Hall in the new Campus Center. Dr. Dunkel was already their waiting for kids to arrive. When everyone finally got there, she said that we should get a jump on our work, but all of us knew that this was not happening. All that we were thinking about was Basketball. It felt like hours before the 30 minute study hall ended. Dr. Dunkel let us all out, and we sprinted down to the gym like a cheetah chasing a gazelle. I paired up with Rain, and we waited in line behind Fru and Conor for our chance to play in this king of the court game. We were finally up, and we checked the ball up top. Fru and Conor had just won in five seconds, with Conor hitting a deep three. We knew that we couldn’t let them shoot, so we played tight defense. We forced a miss, and from that point on, we knew we were winning. Rain blew passed Conor, and Fru jumped over to play help defense. Then Rain kicked it out to me in the corner, and bang! Nothing but net. This may be a small thing that we do together, but it is fun for all of us, and it helps us become closer friends. The friends that I have made at Fenn are people that I will always have fun with, and people that I will remember for my entire life. It doesn’t matter what you do with your friends—it will always be fun.


The Power of Place

The Small Place Full of Big Memories

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“Those little things can add up to make a big difference.”

- Tim McAvoy

 

    Everyone has a place that is special to them. One place that is special to me is the worn down couch in my basement. It is a place for me to go when I am happy, sad, or when I want to relax. It was 5:15 on Friday, and I had just gotten home from soccer practice. I walked in the door, and right away I ran down to the basement and leaped over my sister's dolls on to the worn down couch. I was tired from soccer practice, and I wanted some alone time to relax, play some “Fortnite,” and watch some “YouTube.” First, I opened up “YouTube.” I lay down with my head on one arm of the couch and my feet up against the other. I checked out if there were any new videos, and watched a couple of them. After I watched a couple of the videos, and relaxed from my stressful day at school full of tests and quizzes, I walked up to my Xbox and turned it on. I grabbed my controller and headset, and logged in to “Fortnite.” I invited Harry and Fru to the Xbox party, and we played a couple of games, always arguing about who was the best. Any time one of us died, the others would yell through the mic, but we knew that it was only in good fun. Even though the tan, worn down couch in my basement may seem like a small part of my life, it means a great deal to my life. Whether it is relaxing after a tough day at school, or having fun with my friends, this couch is a placate that is special to me. There is no rule on where your special place is, it just has to be somewhere important to you.


The Power of Hardship

“Difficult roads often lead to beautiful definitions”

- Anonymous 

    There is no success without hardship. One hardship that I have been through in my life was when I had to miss six months of sports because of an injury. I had never broken a bone in my life, but that all changed when I heard the news that I would have to have surgery on my left knee. I walked in to the doctors office for an MRI. I had hurt my knee a couple days prior in basketball practice, and I just wanted to get it checked on. My dad said that it would only be some growing pains, in which case I would just have to rest for a month. When the MRI came back, though, I did not get the news that I wanted to hear. I was going to have surgery. One of my biggest fears was having surgery, and I was devastated. Little did I know that this wouldn’t be the worst part of the doctors appointment. I was barely listening when I heard the doctor say, “We are looking at around a 6 month recovery time after the surgery.” I didn’t even know what to say. I was going to miss spring and summer baseball. After the surgery, it felt like I was in pain 24/7. Even getting up to go to the bathroom hurt like someone was stabbing a knife in to my knee. The worst pain, though, was the fact that I didn’t get to do what I love—play baseball. Even though this was devastating, it also taught me to like new things, like reading and playing board games with my family. Also, my friends were always willing to help me, and that made this injury a lot less difficult to get through. Although this was a hard time for me to get through, it helped me figure out new passions of mine, and it made me a better person. Before, I never would’ve wanted to go through this type of hardship, but it helped me in the end. Although hardship may be devastating, if you learn from it, the hardship can be a good experience.