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AIDS is a sickness.
I feel that people who have AIDS
are no different than us.
Please take my hand and I will be your friend.
I will find help for you.
I will help you see the light of
day, every day.

    Christine Genco, age 12

World of Red

As the red ribbons have become a part of our lives,
we look, and wonder, and notice, we're concerned.
Walking down the streets as the heads all turn,
with a sign of affection in one's eyes.
And everyone says that AIDS is not real,
and AIDS does not discriminate.
Yet we are aware that it is not true,
for the world is full of prejudice.
But then she's there, you can spot her fast,
like a star that doesn't shine.
For her body has become a tree in the winter,
as she begins to diminish as season's change.
Though she is one that will not reappear,
but will fade as the years pass on.
It is hard for her in the outside world
to watch human nature flourish,
while she is cold and all alone,
standing outside the window.
There are many thoughts to cross her mind,
so many goals to conquer,
for she knows soon it will be too late,
and death will be commencing.
But once in a while you'll see her there,
at her favorite bench in the park,
closing her eyes and trying to dream
of the life she couldn't possess.
Reality begins at the end of her life,
when there are no more corners to turn.
Realizing now, and seeing the facts,
that AIDS is more than real.

    Stacey Druver, age 15


She lives in fear
Always waiting for
her sister's scream.
A scream that comes
from so deep inside
that it tears you limb from limb.
What would she do when the scream came?
Hug her, kiss her, comfort her?
And then what?
What about the next day,
what would happen then?
She needs a cure
for the scream.
must work for the cure.

    Rachel Peters, age 14


I don't mean to hurt,
Please come ride the roller coaster with me.
Be my companion,
live hand in hand with the disease.
I need to find it --
Find the one
The help
The cure.

    Sophie Holman, age 11

AIDS and Me

When my Mom comes home
after a long day of caring
for people with AIDS
I dare not get mad.

The virus strikes again
and makes my Mom so loving
toward those with AIDS
For that, I dare not get mad.

Always be there
for the sick who are helpless.
AIDS is not bad
for a Mom like mine
who really cares.
Remember: Don't get mad.

    Youri R. Guibert, age 12

Writing Exercises: Compassion

  • Imagine that you are living with AIDS/HIV: What is it like to have AIDS? How do you feel physically? emotionally? spiritually? Write a poem about this.

  • Why are people not always compassionate to people with AIDS/HIV? Is it because they are afraid of people with AIDS/HIV because they remind them that they, too, may some day get sick or die? How can people stop being afraid and start becoming more caring? If everyone cared more, and was less afraid, would it be a better world? Write a poem about this.

  • Pretend that you are a doctor or a nurse who cares for AIDS patients. Describe what it is like caring for someone with AIDS. Is it sad sometimes? Do you ever laugh with your patients about something? Do you cry? What is it like when you go home at the end of the day? What do you learn from your patients? Do you learn things that make life more precious? Describe this in a poem.

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This article was provided by AIDS Poetry Project. It is a part of the publication AIDS Workbook 2.