Out There — 1984/85

I got a lot of mileage out of this poem. I wrote it in the summer of 1984 or 1985. I remember it was summer, and I was either just starting or just finishing second grade. In 1988, when I was in sixth grade, my dad submitted it, along with some of my other works, to a local amateur essay contest.

I got to go to some workshop with some weird old hippie poet. The other poem was from a creative writing class I took with my dad, and it was about a wolf. It was modeled after “Tyger, Tyger,” IIRC. In any case, the old poet spent most of the workshop screaming at me for stereotyping wolves.

Later, “Out There” was published in the USC Sumter literary magazine when I was in college. A few years ago, I sent it to one of those “You could win $10,000 if you send us your poem” book things, and supposedly it was published.

Out There

(Grade 2)

What could be,
Way Out There
Beyond Pluto,
Beyond Solar Flare?

What could be?
If only we’d see,
Out There
Out There

What could be?
maybe a sea;
a sea of stars,
a sea of being –

What I see
is another Earth;
The opposite of ours:
One of Peace.

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