before the night of new year’s

i plant earth into the ground,
watch my hands 

bloom over the space
like the crested moon that rotated

around the sun this year.
i want to call my friend alisha,

tell her something
i pretend she doesn’t know

about america. the only thing that separates 
us is different 

moons. i stand back
up, think about what to confess

to last year’s me. i finished 
three marking periods 

without blood. i ate cookies for the first time
without shame. i found 

a life that doesn’t need to keep fortunes
safe. my mom 

waves for me to come back 
inside, her hands raised 

high as if holding up
the sky.                      we are what grounds

                              the world, i hear 
and pick my head back 



This poem falls within the theme of new beginnings. It is a short recollection of memories throughout the year personal to me. They are strong moments but gentle in writing as they roll through me one last time before the year ends. I believe that it’s important to relax oneself and think; one does not have to think about everything that happened in the year, but I like to have some reflection that involves a connection with the Earth, friends and family, and myself. At the end of the poem, I am brought back to new beginnings; I become aware of the things around me that I appreciate and pay attention to.

Jacklyn Vandermel

Jacklyn (you can call her Jackie!) Vandermel is a 15 year old, rising sophomore at Northern Valley Demarest High School. She is a poet for Zenerations and passionately writes about diversity, equality, and mental health. She loves being adventurous and learning new things.

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