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The Life of a Ribbon

It stands pinned to my wool overcoat
A vibrant shade of red
It is there to warn us and keep us aware,
But it stands alone
It is beginning to fray at the edges

Yesterday my ribbon fell off
I lost it
It is now gone forever
If we don't find a cure for this virus soon,
Many more will be gone forever too

    Debra Campbell, age 17


You Can't Stop Me ...

I'm just a person, plain to the eye,
Look inside my soul, there's a lot you might find.
Don't be afraid, I won't hurt you, you see,
There's not many differences, between you and me.
I may be sick more often, and won't hesitate to cry,
Sometimes I wake up in the morning, and ask myself why???
Why am I hurting, why must this be?
But for all the obstacles in my way .....


At night I wake up in a sweat,
Will I live to another day?
I run to the window, look up at the sky, and silently began to pray.

"Dear GOD and all the heavens above, please guard me with your light,
And make my body tough and strong, and prepare it for the fight.
See I've just discovered for the past few months, I've been living with HIV.
So I'm asking you to heed my words, and put a blessing on my heart,
So that I may live a little longer and prevent this from the start.
That's the end of my prayer, and LORD it's not just for me,
But it's for all the people in the world, who's eyes have not yet seen."
Sometimes I just stare out the window, and think of how things would be,
But for all those thoughts that get me down .....

    Takesha La'Shawn Rogers, age 17


When I think of
AIDS I think of
the sun because
it is waiting to
peer through people's
windows and make them
feel happy and cheerful.
Especially when they find
a cure.
If this happened there
would be one less problem
in the world today.

    Renay Savino, age 12


When AIDS dies
light will show
people will rise
life will shine
and the dark will go
into a deep hole
AIDS will die with
the black darkness
of death.

    Sam Wiehoff, age 9

How I See You

I see you as a touch of light.
Black or white I still see you as a touch
of light.
The sign of peace is in your heart.
Eyes of all different colors.
Sun or rain I can see you in the earth.
Because it is in me.
Shiny or dark you are still a touch of
Because it is in us.

    Marley Stone, age 8

Writing Exercises: Hope

  • Create a metaphor for hope. An example of a metaphor is "Life is a joke." Life isn't really a joke, but by saying that it is a joke, this is saying that life is funny, or unpredictable, like a joke. What is hope? A flower? A cloud? A sunset? A piece of driftwood? Think of something that makes you think of hope and write a poem that explores this metaphor.

  • Why is hope important? Does hope keep doctors working for a cure? Does hope keep someone who has learned that he or she has AIDS from giving up? Does hope help us cope with the knowledge that someone we love may suffer or die? What would happen if we gave up hope? Think of one way that hope is important, and in a poem explain why it is crucial not to give up hope.

  • When you think about AIDS/HIV, what do you hope for? Is there a person who has AIDS that you hope will live a healthy, happy life? Do you hope for a cure? Do you hope that you won't ever contract AIDS? Do you hope that people who are unhappy because of AIDS will find comfort and wisdom? What do you hope for? Write a poem about it.

  • Write a four line poem with each line beginning with the letters H,O,P,E. Have the poem say something about hope, but do not use the word hope in the poem.

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