Editor’s note: Local students Levi Mullins, 11, and Willow Paschal, 15, were recently named the middle school and high school winners, respectively, of the Warren County Public Library’s poetry contest for middle and high school students. Paschal, a sophomore at Foundation Christian Academy, won for a piece titled “Dear Society, I’m Sorry,” while Mullins, a sixth grader who is homeschooled, was selected for his poem “A Tree’s Eyes.”

‘A Tree’s Eyes’ By Levi Mullins

A Tree

Planted

In Rich soil

Surrounding Him

Safe

Growing

Tall

Strong

Stretching Out

Budding

Animals

Climbing

Hiding

Nesting

Storing Food

Children

Swinging

Sitting

Reading

Playing

People

Running

Walking

Eating

Riding

A Tree

Comfort

Protection

Sturdy

Strong

‘Dear Society, I’m Sorry’ By Willow Paschal

I’m sorry society,

I’m sorry for not being enough,

I’m sorry for not fitting into your bubble,

The bubble of expectations.

The bubble that tells me to be

skinnier,

Taller,

Stronger,

Prettier,

I’m sorry society,

I’m sorry for not being smart enough,

I’m sorry for not being bold enough for you.

I’m sorry I can’t make you happy.

I can’t fit your mold,

I was broken because I could not please you.

I was on the edge of a mountain ready to jump, And for what,

I was willing to give up so many parts of me,

Society you were telling me I had nothing,

That I was a broken toy with no shot to make it in the world. I’m sorry society but I’ll never be enough for you. But society I will always be enough for myself, I’m fine whatever shape,

Whatever size,

Whatever color,

Whatever stage of life I am in,

I am enough.

You may tell me I’m broken,

But I am a masterpiece that you just don’t understand. I am a beauty that should leave you speechless. Dear society,

I may never fit your mold,

And I may never fit into your expectations,

But I will always be enough for me.