2023 Winner


I don’t remember much of you.

Just the corner of your smile,

The light in your eyes as bright as stars

And how your house smelled of flowers as sweet as spring.

Every time,

I close my eyes,

Imagine your laugh,

Your heavy accent,

I try to piece everything together.

Try to imagine you.

I’m always so close, so close to see you —

It all fades to a color as dark as shadows.

I wish I could remember memories,

and laugh about how I was a part of it

But mostly, I feel the lump in my throat,

the throbbing of my ears

And the BOOM! that echoes in my head

As I start to feel like I’m falling.

And there’s no one there to catch me.

But I know you would if you were alive.

When my sadness has been reduced to tears,

And on a particularly good day, I sit on my bed and talk to you,

Hoping my words reach all the way to heaven.


Kira Neufeld

Washington Latin PCS, Cooper Campus

Grade: 6


Washington, DC


Washington, DC

Favorite Author or Book:

Where the Crawdads Sing

Dream for the Future:

My dream for the future is a world with zero waste and clean forests and a cleaner world.