Always FREE Issue No.

11
WJHS Press
Wells Junior High School // Late Spring 2017

Maine Poetry
by Young Poets

“First Love” “Rome”
by Julie Mott by Kadia Thompson and Zoe Clark

It seemed eternal I have been one to wander around Rome
Everything was better I have Roamed around the Tiber river
The grass was greener I have skipped through olive groves many a time
The sky was bluer I have seen the colosseum glowing
It felt like it was going to be forever I have smelled some Carbonara cooking
But the feelings started to die - And tasted this delicious pasta dish
Then the flavor was gone I have bathed in the ancient Roman baths
The life was sucked out of it I’ve seen Apollo flying in the sky
My world went grey His magical sun chariot glows bright
The thing was... Blinding all the birds that pass by his light
I never thought it would end The Parthenon looks over its city
Romulus and Remus battle bravely
The Palatine and Aventine stand tall
I have been one to wander around Rome

“Wandering” “The Winds”
by Isabel Martin by Hayden Jellison

I have been wandering in lonesome wood An array of colors flash through the skies
A dead wood I have longed to return to
Thinking the thoughts I never thought I could Swirling around, flying to their eventual landing

I have wandered elsewhere, yet here I’m glued Empty trees swaying in the wind
Promenades through fields of beautiful fleur
Has not prompted the sorrow to fall through Nature sleeps, under the dead leaves

But decayed trees have caused it to occur Protected and untouched
I have been showered with rain, yet I choose
The water to cause my vision to blur Shielded from autumn’s corruption

My arms are raised to the sky, cold and bruised
To the birds that are flying, as they should
To the oak far above, branches abused

By birds who choose to nest in lonesome wood
Thinking the thoughts I always wished I could
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Always FREE WJHS Press Issue No. 11
Wells Junior High School Issue #11

Staff List: “Fiery Aspirations”
by Andrew Mott

Editor In Chief- Andrew Mott (7) Aspirations are like a flame
lit in darkness, burning with its fiery glow
though it burns so bright you don’t think it could
Featured Writer- Zoe Clark (8) stop

but it does
Featured Writer- Julie Mott (8) whether it be when you’ve reached the end of the
dark hallway it’s leading you down
Featured Writer- Kadia Thompson or when you realize the flame won’t last you to
the end of the hallway
(8)
the flame does burn out,
eventually
Featured Writer- Isabel Martin (8) but it burns so bright you don’t think it could ever
stop
Featured Writer- Hayden Jellison (8)
so whether it burns out at the end of the path
or at the start
Featured Writer- Natalie Hanagan (8)
it will burn out,
maybe not now
Featured Writer- Sophie Killam (7) maybe not tomorrow
but it will

so you must savor the candlelight

Table of Contents:
Page One- Featured Poetry by various students
Page Two- Table of Contents/Staff List/Poem
Page Three- “Rights Restoration”
Page Four- “Rights Restoration”
Page Five- “Rights Restoration”
Page Six- “The Truce” by Natalie Hanagan
Page Seven- “Dakota’s Christmas” Story
Page Eight- “Dakota’s Christmas” cont.
Page Nine- “Dakota’s Christmas” cont.
Page Ten- “Dakota’s Christmas” cont.

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“Rights Restoration”
by Andrew Mott

Say you were convicted of a crime- would to vote or serve on a board have lost those
you still vote afterwards? Possibly. In most fundamental rights permanently, unless
states could you vote? Possibly not. The they make an appeal and go through the
right to vote should never be denied to ex- process of rights restoration. Due to the
felons, as their disenfranchisement may taxing nature and low rate of success with
serve as a stepping stone from a lifestyle of this inefficient ‘rights restoration’, many
rehabilitation to a lifestyle of crime. The lack felons do not make an attempt to regain
of all felon votes may also mean an entire their rights, and even if they do take action,
election could turn- and with the increasing very few make it to the final stages of it.
difficulty of civic and social reintegration, “[The process of rights restoration] is an
many felons lose the elusive opportunity to exhausting, emotionally draining process.”
rejoin society. Almost all states in America With an exponentially increasing number of
deny this fundamental right to those who ex-felons, the number of those unable to
have committed serious crimes, and yet vote will also continue to increase
many respectable sources share the drastically without a proper adjustment to
irrefutable evidence that the current rights
shows why ex-felons restoration process, in
should be allowed to order to make it far
vote despite their simpler, and “reduce the
previously committed stigma associated with a
crimes. felony level conviction.”
“Once somebody And with all of the
has truly paid their debt negative connotations
to society, we should surrounding ex-felons,
recognize it. We should federal ruling in court
welcome them back into has typically been that
society and give them felons are simply not
that second chance. allowed to vote- some
Who doesn’t deserve a states may justify this as
second chance?” In retribution for the acts
states such as (but not those felons have
limited to) Florida, where committed, or as
f e l o n something to keep them
disenfranchisement is from falling back into a
commonplace, those criminal lifestyle. Despite
who have lost their right that justification, those

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felons may then be angry at society for that it makes felons revert to less
removing their rights, and that anger would criminalized lives, felons are now
facilitate those felons receding into a seeking revenge on society for making
criminal lifestyle. Felons are citizens in them outliers, and essentially creating an
themselves; they work and pay taxes, and unnecessarily large amount of tension
the only thing keeping them away from and stigma surrounding them. Felon
being considered a citizen is one simple disenfranchisement isolates ex-felons
criminal act. As of 2010, over 5.85 million
from society by removing them from the
people have been deemed ‘non-citizens’,
political election process, thus creating a
and have lost their basic right to vote- and
with all of those people missing from the counteracting agent to the “rehabilitative
voting age population (felons make up 2% ideals of the criminal justice system.” If
of that population), several elections may the primary goal of felon
have already been turned by the lack of all disenfranchisement laws is to reduce
those votes, as will future elections unless crime, then policies (such as this one)
action is taken by society to reintegrate that result in further ignorance of the law
these felons back into being considered contradict the ideals of those striving for
‘normal members of society’. Seven times a g r e a t e r c o u n t r y. Felon
more people were disenfranchised in 2000 disenfranchisement laws are, in result,
than in 1972, meaning that criminal inefficient and result in increased crime-
punishment is also becoming gradually these laws should be laid out as times of
more strict. With the number of those who the past, and serve as a stepping stone to
cannot vote being increased exponentially, further improvement in the criminal justice
we can expect that many elections in the system.
future will have an outcome different from Despite all of the arguments
what it would be if felons could vote. In the contradicting felon disenfranchisement,
1960 presidential election, for example, of many still attempt to maintain the point
Nixon vs. Kennedy, Kennedy won by a that felon disenfranchisement is a
difference of 0.1% of the voting age positive thing for society, and that it has
population- felons making up more than roots in the U.S. Constitution. Although
0.1% of that population at the time, Nixon felon disenfranchisement laws can be
may have easily won this close presidential
supported by the Constitution
election.
(dependent on interpretation), even
Felon disenfranchisement, contrary
proponents of felon disenfranchisement
to the belief of its proponents and
agree that a lifelong termination of a
supporters, may be acting as a gateway
person’s suffrage is too great a
to increased recidivism rates- felons lose
punishment (despite that being what
their right to vote, and despite the idea
several states are currently doing). Other

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defendants of felon disenfranchisement unnecessary, and that law is not at all
argue that it is not ‘cruel and unusal’, as necessary to keep ‘our voting population
some opponents of the law may say. clean’. Felon disenfranchisement not
Despite that, removal of voting rights only may act as a turning point in future
(among others) was actually referred to federal elections, but it may create an
as “civil death” in Ancient Greece, and environment in which felons are more
was one of the harshest punishments psychologically motivated to get their
available. Therefore, despite the retribution on society- thus, the law to
Constitution facilitating felon keep the ballots clean is polluting our
disenfranchisement statutes, there are country with revenge and anger torn
plenty of other reasons as to why felons citizens, who are deprived of the
should never be denied the right to vote. fundamental right to vote.
In conclusion, the idea of felon
disenfranchisement is unjust and

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“The Truce”
by Natalie Hanagan

The wind breathed in
And spilled an emptied breath out
Upon our sorry skins
A breath of eagles and trout,
A breath of mountains and brooks,
A breath of deserts and plains,
To give us the breeze of which we took
To spill on the moon's waxes and wanes.

And so we huddled from the cold,
And so we kept each other warm,
And so we got lost in stories we told,
And so we prayed against the storm
For our young to hold a future so sweet,
The light we've come to dim,
To never be without bread or meat,
To have Him forget their every sin.

An explosion of mud-slick hands
Pleading, "Don't shoot, don't shoot!"
And brittle, fiberglass plans
Hearts to lie and tongues to pollute.
We can run and we can hide,
We are ever evasive,
We are the kings of eluding pride
We can tie a noose or knot our laces.

A man with a cigar stands in the light
Kisses his smoke,
Which kisses the sky,
Which curled the stars in one weakened croak.
They bred acid rain to wash us of wrong,
They told us how to fly our hopes
Like kites that sailed on angels' songs,
Then dropped their words and cut our ropes.

Mother, it is snowing on the sun rays outside,
The tether is pulling loose,
Father, the clock fingers have come to bide,
On the arm of time labeled "The Truce".
I can see the stones begin to sway,
The mantle is coming undone,
Sister! Is this the end of days?
Brother, it's just begun.

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“Walking in a Wood”

the leaves speak to me as I take my evening walk

the leaves rustle but to me I hear them speak

they don’t have to make words to speak, and so I hear them talk

the rustling of the leaves shows to me the path ahead is bleak

the swirling of the leaves tells me the winds ahead are the first steps
of a cruel tempest though they don’t make words they say that the
winds ahead are stronger than I

the moon above is my caretaker, spectating with a watchful eye and
the leaves are my defenders, warning me of dangers yet to come I
myself am the walker, the one always trekking the paths

the one always warned, not the one giving the warning the one
being protected, not the one protecting

so tomorrow I think I’ll take another path maybe in the day

with no moon to watch me perhaps I’ll take a path through a field
with no leaves to protect me

I’ll try my own path tomorrow, I decide

I’ll find what lies beyond the hillside by myself And perhaps on the
way back

I’ll see another walker

and tell them of the dangers yet to come

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“Dakota’s Christmas”
A Children’s Story
by Kadia Thompson

Early one winter morning, before the crack of
dawn, Dakota woke up to find her prairie dog
burrow decorated with red and green.
Evergreen and berry garlands hung from the
ceiling. There were three little socks hanging up
by the fire place and the smell of fresh baked
sugar cookies drifted in the air.

There was a note left on the counter that read ‘Good morning Dakota, we
have gone to do some Christmas shopping and will be back this evening.
Love, Mom and Dad.’
“Christmas shopping? What’s Christmas?” Dakota said after reading the
note. She felt that she was a single chicken in the middle of a field of cows.
She took a long glance around the burrow at all the new decorations-
“these must have something to do with Christmas!”

She poked her little head out of the burrow to find tiny white flakes falling
from the sky. Winter’s first snow! The snow flew around the sky trying to
find the perfect place to land. Dakota stuck out her tongue to catch the
frosty ice crystals. They melted on her tongue faster than they could fall
from the sky, but seemed to stick to the ground and pile up, covering the
whole world in a white sheet.

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“I’m going to go find out what Christmas really is!” She climbed out of
her family’s burrow and and scurried out of the Prairie Dog Town. Dakota
went down the never ending road until she came to a herd of buffalo grazing
in a snow covered field.

She went up to the smallest buffalo and introduced herself. “Why hello
Dakota! I’m Chip. What can I do for you?” The young buffalo replied in a
sweet voice. “I was wondering if you teach me a little bit about Christmas?”
“Christmas! You’ve come to the right buffalo for this, I love Christmas!” Chip
said with a huge smile on his face.

“Christmas is the time of year where you decorate your house and put up a
Christmas tree!” Chip explained. “And at exactly midnight on Christmas eve,
Santa Claus comes to your house and fills your stocking with goodies and
leaves presents!” “Wow, sounds fun! But, who’s Santa Claus?” Dakota
asked. “Santa is a jolly old man who wears red and white and delivers gifts
to everyone in the world! He rides in a magic sleigh pulled by 8 flying
reindeer.”

“Oh my!” Dakota said in astonishment. “Christmas sounds amazing.” “There
is a lot more for you to learn about Christmas and lots of other animals in
the park who can teach you!” Chip said cheerfully. “Thank you so much,
great to meet you!” And with that Dakota ran off to find out more about the
holiday.

She walked for barely a minute when she came to a field of burros. One of
them came over to her and said “Are you lost little prairie dog?” “No, I'm
trying to learn about Christmas!” Dakota said as she jumped up and down
excitedly. “I can teach you about Christmas! My name is Sendero, you are?”
“Dakota.” “Well Dakota, I'll teach you everything I know about Christmas!”

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“Christmas is more than just Santa, it’s when we celebrate the birth of Jesus.
He was born in Bethlehem and was King of the Jews. He did many great and
powerful things, but some people hated him for that,” Said Sendero.
“Thanks! I have learned a lot so far today.” Dakota replied. She waved
goodbye and left the field of burros.

Across the road Dakota spotted her deer friend, Mocha. “Hey, could you
teach me what Christmas is about?” Dakota said as she approached Mocha.
“Absolutely! It's all about getting together with family and spending time with
each other. My family rarely sees each other, that's why Christmas is so
special to me.” “Wow. I don't know if I have any other family, if I do, I hope I
can see them. Thanks, Mocha!”

As Dakota headed back home she pulled a small tree out of the ground. She
climbed back in her burrow, tugging on the tree so it would fit through the
opening. She put the little tree next to the fire place and hung some shiny
ornaments on its branches, just in time for her mom and dad to come home.
“Well what do we have here?! A Christmas tree!” said her mom with a bright
smile. “Off to bed you go, tomorrow is Christmas and you must have had a
long day.” said her dad.
Climbing in bed, Dakota thought about all she had learned today, and couldn’t
wait for tomorrow.

Dakota woke up on Christmas morning to find her parents and grandparents
gathered in the living room. There were gifts under the tree and a small
Nativity scene on the table. “Good morning and Merry Christmas!” her family
said in unison with such joy. “Now this feels like Christmas!” Dakota
whispered to herself as she exchanged hugs with everyone. “It’s a Christmas
miracle.”

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Always FREE WJHS Press Issue No.
“Sweet Escape”
by Mallory Aromando

I stand here waiting to enter We hope you all have an
this new realm of excitement
and tranquility amazing summer!
I take another step…
- WJHS Press of 2017
And then I go

I peek under this blanket of
the unknown and wonder

what awaits it

I then fully submerge into a
new world

It feels like nothingness but
yet it also feels like everything

I know I am not breathing but
I still feel like I could stay here
forever

But then I come back, to the
known, to the usual
I don’t like as much, it is
missing something,
something that I need
I go back under, it’s a sweet
escape that only lasts for so
long
not long enough

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