Archive for the ‘Memoir’ Category

White Lightning


Photo Courtesy of WikiMedia Commons

by Ryan V., 8th Grade

The cold, smooth-feeling ice and fresh fumes in the air almost makes you shiver while sending chills down your spine.  I look down and see my reflection, which sometimes does not seem to mirror me. If I was angry or sad I would slowly skate across the ice talking deep breaths, and when I close my eyes a new feeling of happiness would take the place of the bad things I want out of my head. Without ice I would be lost.

When I touch the ice I feel like I am a god looking over Antarctica.  The sweet music the ice makes when your cut you blades into it.  Sometimes I think about what it would be like to look up through the icy surface from below.  I can image seeing silver dashes of lightning glide across the surface. I could hear the sticks banging on the ice and the bodies smashing against the hard, cold surface.

When I look at the ice I see myself standing face to face and see little pieces of crystal being set free by the wind.  I visualize the cracks in the ice acting like tiny little canyons.  I see friends having the time of their lives playing pond hockey. “Puck, Puck!” the kids say as they dash across the ice.”GOAL!” Suddenly their gloves are like birds in the air.

The ice can clear your mind and set you free when you step on it with skates to play before a game.  I feel like nothing can stop me from being the best I can be. When I get on the ice I feel like the only thing controlling me are my legs. I look up and see a giant cloud in front of my face. I close my eyes and I feel like I am in a whole different world. I think to myself, if I die, I want to be playing hockey.

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-by Brad B., 8th Grade

I remember the fresh mountain air of Lincoln, NH. It was like nature’s air conditioning in the middle of the summer. We arrived at our condo and unpacked everything. We brought food, drinks, clothes, video games and most importantly bathing suits and sneakers.

It was a beautiful day outside. Hot at home before we left, but refreshing and breezy in the mountains. It was like that until about 5:15 pm. The clouds started rolling in over Loon Mountain, and we had a perfect view from the living room of our condo. It drizzled a bit but then over the mountain, after it cleared up a magnificent rainbow appeared almost like it was part of the mountains.

By nightfall my Dad called the family onto the deck. We saw the stars in glory outlining the mountains in amazing patterns. Thousands of them, lighting up the sky, like little candles viewed from afar. We saw the Big Dipper, Little Dipper and other constellations. The stars were so visible because there were no bright lights shining around us, just the quiet mountains.

Off went the TV, the ipods, the DS’s and the family gathered on the deck. The cool night air chilled us all. We gathered pillows and blankets and arranged ourselves like fallen sticks under a tree, each getting our own view of the spectacular night sky. We watched quietly and pointed out what appeared to be a moving star, but was really a satellite. My Mom said, if we were patient, we would see a shooting star.

We waited for what seemed to be forever, gazing up at the beautiful night sky. The payoff was spectacular. The streak of light flew across the sky like a spark jumping from a fire. We all gasped at almost the same second.

Feeling satisfied by this celestial event, I went back inside. I watched a little tv and had a snack. Then I changed and got into bed. When I closed my eyes the images of that day would be stuck inside my mind until I finally fell asleep. The memory of the beautiful rainbow and starlit night will remain in my mind forever.

Photos Courtesy of WikiMedia Commons

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The End of the Cold

by Kaylee R. – 8th Grade

My brother is the figure in the left bottom corner and my cousin is the long silhuette.

My brother is the figure in the left bottom corner and my cousin is the long siluet in front of the boat.

Hunger. I guess I could call it that. I have a growing hunger to be free. Not from a literal prison, but from the cold chains of winter that bind me inside. I’m not the only one who feels this way; my family, friends and the Earth itself share the pain. The Earth has been hidden and is finally stretching after a long, frigid sleep.

My cousin and I are starting to get a bad case of “Cape Sickness.” “Cape Sickness” is when you are tired of winter and need spring and summer or you will explode. It is called “Cape Sickness” because we miss our summer home at Smaland Beach, Island Pond. My family has been going to this part of the Cape since my Pepe (grandfather) was a kid. Always exit 2 before the bridge’s traffic, a perfect place to stop with impassioned children in the backseat. I don’t know how my mom deals with the screams that open every spring; maybe she did the same.

An hours drive of music and excited talk. I look back into the mental pictures I’ve had since I could stand. “There’s the water tower that looks like a spiral rainbow and there’s the McDonalds with the totem pole in front.” These thoughts buzz in my head like an angry bee. Exit 3, almost there, just two more minutes, but I can’t take it and start to bounce in my seat. Finally Exit 2 comes into view and my mom pulls into the exit lane. At last my brother, my cousin, Rachel and I open the windows and scream as we approach the red school house that welcomes the highway travelers. Suddenly I feel faint and calmly breath in the Cape air.

I’ve memorized every tree and house (except the new, “fancy” ones, that take away from the Cape experience). My heart starts to beat on my chest as we pass Great Herring pond with the boats attached to white, yellow and red buoys. Three more turns and we’re there. One and now two. I can see the pond through a patch of trees. Last turn and I see my summer home, my cottage! Mom parks in the driveway that is cluttered with leaves and dirt. The kids push to be let out, of course the doors are locked and our fingers fumble with them.

Finally we’re out and high-tailing it down the crooked stairs that unfamiliar people would fall if they ran, but this is our element. We brake free of the trees and look out. My breath has left me and my heart skips a beat as I look at the clear pond that has been my inspiration since I could read properly. A smile creeps on Rachel’s face, I know what she’s thinking and I start removing my sneakers like her. We put our socks in our shoes and wade into the cool water and I am at peace, even with my brother saying we’re crazy and he is going to visit a friend. Oh well, his loss. Rachel and I get working on our summer plans as we scrunch our toes in the sand and celebrate the end of the cold.

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by Anna G.- 8th Grade

When our car reached the end of the street, my attention was caught by a makeshift sign hanging off of an old oak tree.  Words snaked across the old beam of wood in curly black letters; they read File:Wintry scenery.jpg“Oak Ridge Golf Course.” Paint peeled on the sign’s edges and icicles were hanging off of the bottom.  I stepped out of our old red Subaru Outback, my eyes passing over the familiar scratch near the back that looked like a fish.  I paused to look ahead of me at the breathtaking scene of untouched snow that seemed to go on for miles. 

The hill was menacing next to my timid five-year-old body.  Snow covered trees who had lost their leaves in late fall glistened in the early morning sunlight.  For a second I had a feeling of fear, which was soon replaced by excitement.  I turned to my mom and dad who were unloading the sleds out of the back of the car.  We were all bundled up in coats, hats, mittens, and boots because it was getting colder each day now.  I could even see my breath in a foggy cloud before me, staying suspended in the air for a few seconds, and then disappearing as I drew in a new breath. 

For a few moments, it was so quiet and peaceful that when my little brother’s footsteps crunched up next to me, I jumped.  He turned and pointed to a dark blue Honda Pilot pulling up next to us.  Its thick black wheels on the icy snow made a sound that imitates gravel crunching on a dirt road.  “Looks like we’re not the only ones here,” my mom noted, and I have to admit that I was a little disappointed.  When we had first arrived, the idea of having the hill all to ourselves was delightful.  I turned and took my brother Joe by the hand and whispered in his ear, “I guess we have to share.”  He looked up at me puzzled, and obviously hadn’t understood anything I had said, but still trudged along next to me, eager for the fun to start.

I hoisted my brand new sled from the trunk with help from my dad and started to pull it towards the hill.  I was so proud of that sled; it was top of the line and was black with red racing stripes.  It was large enough so that my body could fit in it lying down, so more than one person could sit in it at a time.  On the box it had even said that it was the fastest sled around, which added to the childish excitement that consumed me.  As I guided it towards the hill it made a quiet scraping sound on the icy snow.  I looked back, noticing my family starting to follow me and the faint marks that the runners of my sled left in the snow.  I sped up, making sure I got there first.

I reached the top of the hill and was reminded of its astonishing size.  I felt like a pebble next to a boulder.  I wasn’t one to pass on any kind of challenge, even at age five, so this was just another adventure to me.  I wanted to throw a snowball and see how far down it would go, so that maybe I wouldn’t feel as small.  The first handful of snow that I took from the ground crumbled between my gloved fingers.  I was wearing my favorite gloves; they were fuzzy and pink, had Mickey Mouse on the top, and had little grips in the shape of hearts on the inside of each hand.  I reached down and picked up a new handful of snow, which I hurled as hard as I could.  When it became airborne it was hit by a huge gust of wind, which blew a mound of snow back into my face. 

I flinched, impatiently brushing the snow off of my face and opened my mouth to take in a deep breath of chilly air.  I could feel snowflakes melting on my tongue.  Snowflakes are just as fun to catch on your tongue the 15th time as it is the 1st, especially when you’re five.  Soon my family walked up beside me.  Joe turned and pointed at the other group of people on the other edge of the hill.  “Friends?” he questioned, being two and a half years old and not knowing many words.  “Maybe,” my mom replied, glancing at me with a look that read ‘go along with it’.  I put down my sled and held onto the string.  “I want to go with Mom this time” I said, looking up with a hopeful smile. 

As I turned to face the hill again my mom bent down next to me so that she was just about at eye level with me.  “You sure you want to go down this big hill Anna honey?” She looked into my eyes, knowing how I ignored when she called me honey at just the right times.  “Yes!” I almost yelled. I made certain not to look the least bit scared despite the uneasy feeling in my stomach.  We got onto our sleds with Joe and I in the front and Mom and Dad in the back.  My mom’s strong arms around my little waist were reassuring, and I was more than ready to conquer this hill.  “Okay, let’s go!” my dad exclaimed, and we pushed off. 

File:Sparkling-snow.fairytale.jpgIt was an amazing feeling.  The cold air whipped against my face and blurred the quickly moving scenery around me.  The once crisp clear trees and snow covered sheds around the golf course now looked like ones in a watercolor painting.    As we glided down the hill I was aware of myself laughing, and of the vague sensation that I was flying.  This went on until we were near the bottom of the hill, and almost too soon, it was over.  My heightened senses and heady feeling of thrill was replaced by a desire to do it all over again.  We trudged back up the hill and were all flushed a light shade of pink when we reached the top.  “I want to go by myself this time,” I said and looked up at my parents with the eyes I knew always got to them.  My dad smiled warmly.  “Really?”  He laughed.  “Already?  You’ve only been down once!” his voice showed amusement even though his face showed fatherly concern.  “Don’t worry, I can do it.” I said, which brought on another quiet bout of laughter which I knew wasn’t intended to be insulting, but always made me a little mad.  I grabbed my sled and jumped on. 

This ride was twice as good as the first.  I swerved left and right, feeling the sled move easily with my silent commands.  When I reached the bottom, I raced back up the hill, trying not to slip on the icy mounds of snow that were around every corner. As I looked around I saw the lines that traced the path that I had taken down the hill, which would be covered up by new snow in a few hours.  I dragged my sled over to a tree and carefully draped the string around its base.  My mom and dad were talking over by the car, so I sat down next to my brother who was playing with the snow around him.  When I reached him, he turned to me and looked at me with the face that always made me laugh, when he narrows his eyes and one eyebrow is higher than the other.  I tried not to laugh, and didn’t succeed when he looked at me and said two words with a completely solemn expression.  “Show off.”

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