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From the Teens of Washington County, MD
Updated: 2 hours 7 min ago

Teen Artwork: “Ayama”

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 07:46


Follow the artist on Instagram @aldernorth_

YA Bookshelf: 4 Book Reviews

Thu, 01/07/2021 - 07:54

by JJP, Staff Writer

Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong (Graphic Novel), by Prudence Shen & Faith Erin Hicks

4 Words: Friendship, Classic, Funny, and Sweet. A must-read for sure – it’s all over the place, and its everything you could want while you are stuck at home. It is a really well-put-together graphic novel.

The Art Of Being Normal, by Lisa Williamson

READ THIS! IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE, FOR REAL! It’s too amazing to put down, and it will make you mad, sad, and everything else you could feel. So READ IT. You’re stuck in the house – what else are you going to do? And when you are done reading, you will understand what I’m saying. Whether you’re straight or LGBTQ+, you will love this book.

Teen Titans: Raven, by Kami Gracia

I love this book! If you love black magic, fighting demons, and uncovering family secrets, as well as a powerful teen girl, then this is most likely your book. Just saying.

Black Boy White School, by Brian F. Walker

For this one, the only words I have are: Read, Learn, and Understand. This is probably the best book I have read in all my 16 years of life. It’s a book you can’t put down.

Teen Artwork: “Procrastination Artwork”

Thu, 12/31/2020 - 07:40

“Procrastination Artwork”

Follow the artist on Instagram @lucy.ghost_runner

Teen Artwork: “Untitled”

Thu, 12/24/2020 - 07:25


Follow the artist on Instagram @aldernorth_

Teen Photography: “Deer”

Thu, 12/17/2020 - 07:19


By Joshua Kebe

Follow the photographer on Instagram @joffoes_photography

Teen Artwork: “The Sheikah”

Thu, 12/10/2020 - 07:09

“The Sheikah”

By The Delirious Sapphic, Staff Artist

It’s All Passing

Thu, 12/03/2020 - 07:59

by MJ Maheu

She learned to trust – who can blame her?
But they’re slowly crumbling it all away

He learned to love them – he was sure they knew
But now they’re all slowly fading

They thought they had it all
They knew it wasn’t a dream…it was real
But now they see it all slowly disappearing

It was a mistake she’ll never make again
A decision he never thought he’d regret
A moment, a question they never thought they’d get…

Everyone and everything in this life passes
Trust, love, fear, joy are things that break easily and sometimes won’t last
Live your life to the fullest
Build it with good morals

Life’s tough.
If it’s easy, you’re doing it wrong.


Thu, 11/26/2020 - 07:55

by Ryan Dowd, Library Homelessness Expert

I love Thanksgiving!


I try really hard not to be grateful for what I have.

You might think that someone who works at a large homeless shelter (and who has witnessed crushing poverty in multiple African countries) would be especially grateful to God that he lives in neither a homeless shelter nor an African slum. And I am, but I try not to be.

I try not to be merely grateful because it is very easy for gratitude to replace action. It is very easy for gratitude to become an end rather than a beginning.There is nothing wrong with gratitude that leads a person to action on behalf of others. Unfortunately, we often seek gratitude for its own sake, and there is nothing inherently good or worthy about gratitude that does not cause us to help someone else.

My only response to the misfortunes of others cannot be gratitude that I am not them.

I try especially hard not to be grateful to God for the blessings in my life. I have spent too much time with people in shelters and slums to think that God gave me a beautiful wife, two healthy children, a law degree and a steady job while giving others homelessness, malaria, schizophrenia and cancer.

We often treat gratitude like a burnt offering: something that drifts up to heaven and pleases God for its own sake, but doesn’t fundamentally change the conditions on this earth. It supposedly atones for a multitude of sins, but by itself it does nothing to rectify them.

Maybe the God who created the trees and the birds (and us) and the very earth where slums and shelters sit wants more than my gratitude. God did not build the slums and the shelters. We did. And it is we who will have to unbuild them.

So, my prescription for this season of giving thanks is to embrace the joys in your life with humble gratitude. But immediately after gratitude you should feel angst—angst at a world that falls short of its potential. This feeling is more important than the gratitude that precedes it, because angst coupled with hope is capable of birthing both today’s miracles and tomorrow’s justice.

Or, more simply put: Be grateful. Then go change the world.

(Photo credit: Terrence Antonio James of the Chicago Tribune)

Teen Photography: “Sunflower Time”

Thu, 11/19/2020 - 07:22

“Sunflower Time”

By Emerson Paul


Thu, 11/19/2020 - 07:10

Die at dawn

Respawn at spawn

I love Minecraft

Until my dog died in a shaft

Lol, whoops, spider trap

My fingers go snippy snap

Is that a cave spider or a bat?

I want to have my tabby cat

No, no, Doggo – that’s a cliff!

I still remember his sniffy sniff

Look at all those chickens

I have tons of seeds

I want to find some beads

Who can mod them in for me?

I have lemonade to pour

Is that a zombie at my door?

Teen photography: “My New Crystal”

Thu, 11/05/2020 - 07:36

“My New Crystal”

By Joshua Kebe, Staff Photographer

YA Bookshelf: 4 Book Reviews

Thu, 11/05/2020 - 07:26

by Z.H., Teen Reviewer

  • A Thousand Pieces of You, by Claudia Gray

         I enjoyed this book enough to finish it, but not enough to continue the series. The reason for this was there was too much romance for me. I enjoyed the mystery and dimensional travel in the book but it was not enough to overpower the romance. If you are into romance and sappy stuff, then this would be a great book for you. Throughout this book, we follow Marguerite in a goose chase across dimensions to find her father’s killer. As this happens, a love triangle forms and makes everything more complicated. This book is too complex for me and I would recommend this for ages 15 and up due to sexual content, mature themes, profanity, and mild violence.

  • I Am The Weapon, by Allen Zadoff

         I enjoyed this book because there was a lot of action and adventure. In “I Am The Weapon,” the main character travels in and out of places in just enough time for people to mysteriously die. The main character in this book is an assassin for the Program, which is a corporation that eliminates enemies of the United States. One high-profile assignment makes him wonder if he is doing the smart thing, or if he should quit his dangerous job. Bridges are burned, relationships are broken, and new ones are formed. I recommend this book to middle schoolers and up because of violence, mild profanity, and some mature themes. 

  • All American Boys, by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely

         I liked this book because it was very moving and was told in many perspectives. This book takes place in a divided environment that has a lot of racial tension. It tells a story of a victim of racism and police brutality and also of a bystander who is conflicted between doing the right thing or defending his friend. Throughout the book, the characters, Rashad and Quinn, grow closer together and eventually take action. I would recommend this book to mature audiences like high schoolers because of intense profanity, mature themes, and violence. This book relates to what is happening in the US today and is a good way to find the truth. #BlackLivesMatter

  • Legend, by Marie Lu

         I liked this book because it had a lot of twists, turns and adventure. This dystopian novel’s setting takes places in the future and the city of Los Angeles is split into sectors. The sectors in the city were based on wealth and power. One of the main characters who is named Day, who is from a poor family and is well-known as a thief.  The other main character who is named June is a wealthy sister to a police officer, and he is very committed. This police officer is killed by Day, and June feels rage and bitterness towards him for this act. They endure a ton of adventures and hardships together and finally become friends after Day saves June’s life multiple times. This book is the first in a series, and I recommend it to preteens and up because of violence, mild profanity, and mature themes.   

Teen Artwork: “La Catra”

Thu, 10/29/2020 - 08:57

by Cat Ehmer, Staff Artist

Waiting for Night

Thu, 10/29/2020 - 08:06

by Kevin Lin, Staff Writer

Waiting for the sun to set

Waiting for the moon to rise

Waiting for the day to fade

Waiting for the night to fall

Waiting for the night creatures to appear

Waiting for the melody to be spread throughout the land

Waiting for luminous stars to glow

Waiting for the sky to be filled with crystal lights

Waiting for society’s voice to fade

Waiting for the peace and calm

Waiting to fall asleep

And waiting for good night dreams to be heard

An Edgy Haiku

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 11:47

By Indie Movies 4 Life, Teen Contributor

You cannot hurt me,

You vile piece of rotten dirt.

Get out of my sight.

Teen Photography: “Untitled”

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 08:54

By JJP, Staff Photographer

Teen Artwork: “Hopes and Dreams – Undertale OST”

Thu, 10/15/2020 - 08:33

“Hopes and Dreams – Undertale OST”

Follow the artist on Instagram @loser_lux


Thu, 10/15/2020 - 08:18

by Dahlia, Staff Writer

The hug lasted too long.

His hands were still wrapped around me when I moved away, not sure if I was to hold on as well.

He told me he remembered that little girl so many years ago, excited and happy, daring to be herself.

He told me of when he first met me, how the little girl reminded him so much of his daughter.

When he finished speaking he looked up from his hands telling the story to look at my sad, disgraced face.

He looked at me as if he expected to see that little girl he thought he knew, when in reality he didn’t.

So he told me, life had swung too hard.

Life had hit you with a basketball and you just needed to figure out it was an accident

Life was waiting for you realize it too

But I stared at him, looked him in the eyes and wondered just who he saw

I wondered if he saw the burst of anxiety and shaking I would get with the people all around, if he saw the foot tapping or eyes shifting as he looked over at me.

I wondered if he saw just how bruised and broken I was, like glass hitting concrete

I wondered if he saw his own daughter, now fragile and too compassionate.

I wondered if he blamed himself for what had happened to me, as if he had thrown the ball, as he was the one who hurt me, who called me names, and broke me down until I couldn’t put myself back together again

It didn’t matter.

I could see in his eyes the hope was fading, I knew it was too late, to say the words he needed, to guard him from the truth that he was too afraid to hear, it was too late, it was too late.

Now he was broken too.

Teen photography: “My Favorite Flowers”

Thu, 10/08/2020 - 08:32

“My Favorite Flowers”

by Joshua Kebe, Staff Photographer

Follow the photographer on Instagram @joffoes_photography

Till the Very End

Thu, 10/08/2020 - 08:04

by MJ Maheu, Staff Writer

People don’t value things

Till they’ve lost them

They don’t believe things

Till they’ve seen them

They don’t trust others till they trust themselves

They don’t love wholly

Till they’ve made sure they won’t get hurt

But he values everything and everyone before losing anything or anyone

He believes even without proof

He trusts even if he doesn’t trust himself

He loves till it hurts him

So he will keep valuing those around him

He will never stop believing

He will trust even if he’s betrayed

He will love till the very end of his days