A dream beyond the sun

By Eleni Murphy
7th grade, St. Peter's School, PA

With lines from "How Does Coronavirus Kill? Clinicians Trace a Ferocious Rampage Through the Body, From Brain to Toes" by Meredith Wadman, Jennifer Couzin-Frankel, Jocelyn Kaiser, and Catherine Matacic, a Pulitzer Center reporting project

The red sun soaking the earth
Life and loss absorbed
Grey stones swallowing the stars
Forgotten fates

While I am stuck in the confines of my dreams
I try to break free
My brittle bones, the frail fingers
pull me away 
From escaping the inescapable 

A ray of light hydrates my face
A  harmony of birds takes me over
Striated branches, veined leaves
Nature abounds

I reach to grab a prickling branch
Something I cannot grasp
I can envision beyond it
The end of the desolation
The unreachable star

Too far from my existence
The red rocks burn beneath me
I ask the land for forgiveness
Beyond the ground, it has passed on
Time is of the essence

I drown in a pool of lament
Then reach for those beside me
There is nobody there 
Everybody is gone
No more support

I grab a blazing stone
A burning pierces into my hand
The blood trickles
Dripping to the ground, it seeps into the soil
The lives left beneath me
Not nature, but death abounds
A ferocious rampage through the body
It takes us over

I feel their voices
They feel comfort
I feel their warmth on my youthful skin
I listen to them, to the division and the separation
They were taken by innocence
Its ferocity breathtaking and humbling
The battle itself disrupts
To rest peacefully below the ground
Gasping for breath
With a loss of smell and taste
No sense of the world above them

A beige petal drifts beyond my eyes
As three more follow after
To travel into the stars
Venture beyond them
To a place that is no longer unreachable 
A place no longer envisioned
A place no longer a dream
A place beyond the sun

Eleni Murphy
Eleni Murphy

Eleni Murphy is a rising 8th grade student at St. Peter's School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She was first immersed in profound poetry analysis in her early years at St. Peter's. Now, she adores writing poetry, reading creative writing, and spending time with her two cats. Just like many other people in America, Eleni has been isolated inside of her home in Philadelphia. This time, and the tribulations that many have faced, inspired her to write poetry as a form of self-expression. This led her to write for the Pulitzer Center, and she is very honored to share her poem to this new community.

Read more winning entries from the 2020 Fighting Words Poetry Contest