FIRST PLACE, SONNETS:

SONNET TO MY STUDENTS ON THE FIRST DAY OF CLASS

Come in and make a mess with all your thoughts.
Here shake them loose and spill them on the page.
Then push them, pull them, tie them into knots.
Your words are laughter, questions, hopes, and rage.
The writing in this room will echo, pound
against our heads and hearts: cacophony.
Then, crash of who we are creates a sound
From which our hearts rise up: a symphony.
For mess and noise and joyful chaos reign
In space where all experiment and try.
To set you free, I loose you from the chains,
Release you to explore your inner eye.
So, welcome. I invite you to a year
Of messy, joyful learning without fear.

Allison Berryhill
Atlantic

Copyright © 2020 Lyrical Iowa Iowa Poetry Association