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Poetry with Laurie Filipelli 2022

On our first day of Poetry & Imagination this smart group told me, “You don’t know us, until you do.” In our five days together, we got to know each other as only poets can. Each morning, we walked out to explore the world. Moontowers, murals, fountains, and fairy gardens greeted us in our East Austin neighborhood. Together, we collected details and chalked sidewalk haiku. Back in the studio, we read poems by Federico García Lorca, Matsuo Basho, Theodore Roethke, and Elizabeth Alexander and used them as inspiration for our own work. I’m honored to say that by day five each poet had developed their own direction and shared their deepest thoughts. Enjoy! - Laurie Filipelli


Collaborative Poem

Five Directions to Poetry

1) Go for a walk. First step, walk, run, go!

2) Walk to the broken sidewalk, waiting to be fixed.

3) Beneath the thick crust of secrets, there is such an urge to speak the unspoken.

4) Grow, grow red rose up out of cement. Your petals pink.

5) You are a rose, tangled at its roots.

6) I said the place you seek is farther south. Go until you hit the trees and then you will find the place you seek.

Gabriel Gutierrez


The rabbit suddenly fell, looking down it was too dark to see anything. Then he saw food hung up on pegs. One of the shelves he passed was labeled, RABBIT. He thought of running.


The things you seek are farther deep

The more you search the less you seek

Once you seek you’ll finally see the thing

You seek has been thought to be

Five Haiku

Trees grow tall for shade

To protect me from the sun

Until winter comes

Sidewalks get hot fast

In this scorching summer heat

Pet owners beware

This feels new and hard

Poetry is a struggle

Between pen and mind

Fire a source of strength

Power within the flame

Coals burned until gone

Power be careful

It can break the purest hearts

makes good turn evil


Molly Stromberger

Alice in Wonderland

—a found poem

Suddenly stopping at the well

To wonder?

Look down.


Disappointment, empty


Tumbling down the stairs

Why, I wouldn’t say anything.

Down, down, down

No end.

No one to listen anyways


Downward, falling through the air

Down, down, down

I hope-

Ignorant little girl,

There is nothing.

Down, down, down

I doze off, I dream

Ignorant little girl-

Tell me the truth

Down, down, down

The fall was over

Birds & Moontower



Help me, ease my pain

For I fear I am next,

Next to leave

They tear down all that is around me


Please tell them not to take me


Don’t fly away

I know you can hear me!



Help me!

ease my pain

for I fear I am next,

next to leave


Fiona Briggs

Around the sun in real time

Filling space in a cosmic mess

Emptiness is a troubled mind

Days spent wistful and weary

A difficult scale to compress

Around the sun in real time

The dark and light will greatly contrast

Endless days of fear and stress

Emptiness is a troubled mind

The moon will sink and the stars will fade

Find a new thing to obsess

Around the sun in real time

Words alone cannot convey it

Only feelings can we express

Emptiness is a troubled mind

To do what must be done, one must speak

Only then can we progress

Around the sun in real time

Emptiness is a troubled mind


Flying by, staying on the moontower only as a place of rest

It has no use now

Bright lights from the houses light the dark streets

It cannot remove the stars in the sky

For what has been removed cant be removed again

It still stands because it costs too much

To take it down

So there it remains

The moontower invited the birds to rest on it

To give it a purpose

For it has none now

So there it remains

It claims it lights up to prevent crime

It claims to make the world brighter

But the birds know you cannot brighten the world to prevent crime

You must prevent crime to brighten the world


Siyona Biswas

You Say I'm Just a Girl

You say I'm just a girl

You say I'm just a girl

You say I don't need to be perfect

You say I'm just a girl

but I'm full of power

so devastating, so simple

even the lions are afraid of me

I hold chaos in the palm of my hand

To tame the untamable

I whisper every word

for fear it may be heard

I used to be unnoticed

thrown down to the curb

now I'm anything but a girl

I'm different now

the ocean's made of the tears I shed

I'm always second best

Thunder is the dreadful sound of anger

That everyone can hear

So if you say I'm just a girl

You’re wrong

So very wrong


Time passes me by


If only it may stop

I've tried so many times


Hoping that if I take of the hands

Almost to rob it of its identity

Time may stop

But it hasn't

It won't

And so...

My heart burns


on a platter

to be served to the world



everyone has a fear

But I'm certain I don't

How may I fear if nothing has yet happened

Fear is like my stalker

It's waiting for me to snap

It's waiting for me to be scared

It's waiting for me to feel at all

to be happy

to be sad

Fear, a simple emotion

and addition to life

something we must worry about

If I don't feel.

how may I fear

But fear has overcome me

And now all I do is fear

and what do I fear


I fear fear

Its impossibleness to overcome

The pain

The swelling it causes

And yet, through all this fear

I manage to become human

To feel

and maybe that's the lesson of it all


Viviana Gutierrez

The Sock

I am worn all day

I’m a pair but all alone

You know what I am


My cat, Leo is

five shades of brown

Fourteen and has the soul of a kitten

The Desk

I am sat on all day

Homework is always on me

Medal and wood makes me

Cool Cream

Cool Cream

It’s awesome, yum

Delicious cool cream, eat it

Sweet makes it good

The Happy Rabbit

He was born without siblings

Unusual for a kit

Sweet snugs and floppy ears

Favorite thing: Carrots, Tomatoes, and People

My bunny


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