Mother’s Words, a poem by 5th grade student Maddie Posch of Washington D.C., is this year’s winner of the ‘Celebrate America’ Creative Writing Contest. Maddie’s winning entry explores the importance of passing on immigration stories between a mother and child.

Mother’s Words

By Maddie Posch

I sit down slowly,

And quietly too.

Mother’s story draws me in,

Like all of them do.

She compares everything she had,

Too what we have here.


I look in her eyes,

And I see a lonely tear. I can tell she misses the place she left behind.

With a variety of cultures and clothing, in unique designs.


Her words form pictures, all drawn in my mind.

I see animals and people, All how she described.

I see birds like vultures,

And I watch them fly by.


Her words begin to get shaky, And I can tell she is about to cry. The lonely tear falls,

Then more pass by. Still, she keeps talking, Until she can’t anymore.


Her eyes still silently pour, With words left unsaid.

When she finally calms down,

She says with eyes still red, “Enough little one,

It is time for bed.”


I help her get up,

From the chair where she sat. I walk over to the bed,

And I lay her down flat. As I begin to walk away, She beckons me closer.


“Be careful little one for my home was not peaceful.

There were wars and danger that make me grateful

For what the Americans gave me and what they let me have.”


I pondered those words, As she sent me off to bed. That night I still had,

Her words in my head.

What did she mean,

in those few moments?


I finally slept,

Still hearing Mother’s words. I dreamt of soaring birds, And powerful herds.

I dreamt of her home, So nice and peaceful.

However, that was not all I had dreamed, I saw wars and fighting,

on the once beautiful scenes.

I saw bombs exploding in the sky. I saw families who lost people, Starting to cry.


Now I know why Mother had ran,

This had happened to her in her homeland. I was suddenly thankful,

For the land I called home. America took in my mother, When she was all alone.