Maxwell Surprenant stands in front of St. Sebastian's statue at his school in Needham, Mass. (Photo by Joy Olaes Surprenant)
Saint Sebastian's School

A Collection of Poems: Celebrating National Poetry Month

Poem: The Warrior

He grasps the arrow in his hand,
a stick and feather, nothing grand,
to shoot it out — where will it land?

Fist reddens, renews its grip,
Nervous bite, a blood red lip.
Closes his eyes to see the light,
No rest, he fights through the night.

Does the warrior have a choice?
Can a rooster stay silent, can it quiet its voice?
Should he drop the arrow,
what may come tomorrow?
No mark, no dent, not a sound,
Nothing left to be found.

Like a messenger on his horse,
carefully he changes course.
Using his force, his strength, his might,
he sends the arrow off in flight.
Trust instinct, let faith flower,
Inside his soul, lies his power
to overcome his darkest hour.

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Maxwell Surprenant stands in front of St. Sebastian’s statue at his school in Needham, Mass. (Photo by Joy Olaes Surprenant)

Poem: The Heist

Below the small pond that shimmers and shines
In a world that gathers but little light
Like the dreamers digging for gold in mines
I pray for a single one to bite.
Ripples awaken the water, sleeping and still
A sneaky thief breaks into a house
The school swims happily until
I become the cat that catches the mouse!
We push and pull, a child’s game, and I win
The prize flips and flops, this way and that way
The predator devours the prey for din
And this is the last heist of the day
The pond settles into its restful state
Darkness warns it’s getting late.

Poem: Cold

Winter’s breath reeks of hunger and hurt,
Its foul odor extinguishes hope,
Mountains of snow is darkened with dirt,
A homeless man must fight to cope.
No mittens protect his hands from the cold,
No warm scarf around his neck,
A soldier in war, he must stand bold,
No boots, no choice, on and on, he must trek.
He scours for scraps among the trash,
He holds a sign, a desperate plea:
I need change. Spare a little cash?
Please, won’t you even look at me?
Alas, one act of kindness warmed his heart.
The world needs more, but it’s a start.