Contest-Winning Poems

By Raehana Anwar

On March 29, the winners for the 2018 Sybil Nash Abrams Student Contest were revealed by the Poets’ Roundtable of Arkansas. Out of the six winners, four are from Mount’s very own Creative Writing class. The four students submitted handwritten poems from class and ranked from 2nd place to 2nd honorable mention.

The Poets’ Roundtable of Arkansas (PRA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the study of poetry. The PRA was created to encourage poets and promote an appreciation of poetry in the community, and secure more recognition for the works of poets in Arkansas. This organization offers monthly contests, one of which all the students in Mount’s Creative Writing class submitted poems for, along with students from six other schools. This added up to a total of 23  high school student entries, with only six prizes given.

The winners from Mount include Raehana Anwar in 2nd place, Stephanie Verdaris in 3rd, Hannah Brockette with 1st honorable mention, and Grace Cassie with 2nd honorable mention. 2nd place receives a $30 cash prize, 3rd receives $20, and honorable mentions are awarded books. Along with collecting their prize, each winner is invited to attend the Poets’ Roundtable of Arkansas Dr. Lily Peter Spring Celebration and is given the opportunity to present their winning poem.  The winning pieces are listed below in order of their award.


Raehana Anwar

i am six,

with a head of hair,

free of curls,

falling to my hips.

teacher tells me i hold my pencil wrong,

but i write neater than any other first grader i know.

one day mom was crying,

and i knew my baby brother would be here soon.

i wore my best dress: blue flowers painted onto pale white.

i had to make the best of impressions for the new face.

i don’t understand the red, yellow, green lights on the streets,

how they change from color to color.

i think there are small people inside of them,

pushing buttons for hours and hours.

i would hate to have that job.

i hear a soft sound echo from the radio.

mom tells me the soft sound is called a flute.

i want to make the sound.

dad always counts his money.

he takes us to diners and days on the beach,

but it makes him sad.

his business is dying.

but he doesn’t think i know that yet,

because i’m only six.

Texas and Arkansas

Stephanie Verdaris


It wasn’t always “Texas and Arkansas”
Used to be just one state,
But then you had to leave.
Intense games of tag, lots of fun, and many playdates,
But then you went to Texas and we had to set each other free.
And then as we got older, our paths crossed once again
And we immediately remembered why we’d been such good friends.
Your positive outlook, hilarious sense of humor, and loving heart
Made me realize I should’ve kept better contact with you from the start.
But now you’re still in Texas and I am still in Arkansas
But we’re back to being inseparable.
Annual visits, facetimes, sweet texts,
And lots and lots of “I can’t wait till I see you next.”
You have shown me what a true best friend is like
And that no matter what, you’ll always be a part of my life.
Maybe you’ll always be in Texas. And maybe I’ll always be in Arkansas.
But no matter where we go, you will always be in my heart.

Lake Days

Hannah Brockette

Hot summer days
Spent at the lake.
Floating on a raft,
Tubing in circles.
Water splashes in my face.
Fast strokes against my arms,
As I race my friends.
The boat bounces up and down
As it hits wave after wave.
It pulls up on shore
Scraping the gravel.
Now I’m back at camp
Sitting around the campfire.
Listening to stories and gossip
All night long.
I get in my bed.
I lay still as a stick.
But my body still moves like a fish

Love Letter

Grace Cassie

It’s hilarious how someone can go from being your best friend
To a stranger
In a matter of seconds.

I remember lying next to you under shimmery, yellow lights,
Hoping that this moment could last an eternity,
As you wrapped me up in your warm arms,
Protecting me from the cold world around us.

I remember late nights eating dinner with your family
And losing at every card game placed in front of me.

I remember the moments when calling you could stop
The flood of tears from overcoming my life
And you calling me to listen to every moment of my day.

But, people change.

You went from a carefree boy to a politician,
Always concerned about what others thought
And, in return, trying to win over every single person you met.

You went from my undying protector
To my inevitable downfall.
But most of all,
you went from my best friend
To someone I don’t even know,
And, because of that,

I will sadly always remember you.


Spring Recipes

By Rachel Eberle

It is always fun to change up your cuisine with the new seasons. With the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables in spring it is easy to create healthy, tasty dishes. Here are two spring inspired recipes that are delicious and easy to make.

Lemon Risotto with Spring Vegetables

  • 12 ounces asparagus
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen spring peas
  • 1 quart low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium leek, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 ½ cups Arborio rice
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh, chopped parsley
  • 1.25 ounces grated parmesan cheese (about ⅓ cup)

The lemon risotto requires a little effort and prep time but the finished product is worth it. You can make it your own by swapping out the peas and asparagus for other vegetables or adding in a protein for a more substantial meal. Eating it the day after, as leftovers, made the flavors even stronger and better.

Check out the recipe here.

Lemon Blueberry Whoopie Pies 

For the Whoopie Pies:

  • 2 ½ cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened (2 sticks)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup of milk
  • 1 pint fresh blueberries, divided

For the Lemon Filling:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 4+ cups powdered sugar

The lemon blueberry whoopie pies are easy to make and are a great dessert with just the right balance of tart and sweet. You can make these you own and eat them as cookies dipped in the lemon cream cheese filling instead or as sandwiches.

Check out the recipe here.

Valentine’s Day Printables

By MaryClaire Fox

Hey ladies! Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and I wanted to make some printables for you guys to get in the spirit. I know it can become a time of the year you just want to skip over if you do not have someone to share the day with, but that does not mean you can’t spend time with your family and friends. I hope you guys all have a great day and spread the love!

Click here to check out the printables!

Date-Night Looks

By Raehana Anwar

With the arrival of Valentine’s day comes the stress and chaos of prepping for the perfect date.  Whether you’re going to dinner with your S.O. or having a night out with the girls, it can be tricky to find the right look for the occasion.  With this in mind, I’ve put together four different outfits for four of the most common date locations I could think of, hopefully easing your worries and providing some inspiration for your perfect Valentine’s Day look.









The movies has always been the most cliche date spot, but also the most casual. With dark lighting and comfy seating, the movie theater has the most chill and laid back atmosphere, which isn’t a bad thing at all. You can easily pull off a comfortable yet cute look with a pair of sweatpants (or any other comfy pants), slip-ons, and a long-sleeved shirt.







Dinner is a bit more formal than a movie, which means, sadly, sweatpants won’t make the cut. Depending on how fancy the restaurant is can determine how dressed up you want to get, but a typical dinner can go along the lines of jeans, boots, and a sweater or long-sleeved shirt.







A coffee date or an afternoon in the park are both casual and easy options that call for more laid back outfits. You can pair leggings with an oversized shirt and a denim jacket layered on top for an effortless put together look. Slip on some sneakers and you’re good to go.








A concert or party would be the most dressed up look out of the four. My go-to party look is a black skirt paired with a long-sleeved shirt. You can dress it up with heels or keep it comfortable with sneakers. to make a simple outfit stand out more, add some accessories. Layer some necklaces or add on earrings and the look’s complete.






Treats That Will Slay Your Valentine’s Day

By Allie Keene and Bella Giglio

Valentine’s Day is here! Whether you are snuggling up with someone special or eating away your sorrows, these cake balls are the perfect treat for you.


  • 1 box of cake mix (we used red velvet)
  • About 2/3 of a tub of icing (we used cream cheese)
  • 2 packages of candy melts (we used pink and white)
  • 1 small container of sprinkles


  • First, bake the cake as directed on the box.
  • After allowing the cake to cool, crumble it into a bowl on top of the icing.
  • Next, mix the cake and frosting together until combined.
  • Form the mixture into balls about the size of a tablespoon and chill in the fridge for 2 hours or in the freezer for 1 hour.
  • After chilling, melt the candy melts into a separate bowl. Dip the cake balls in one at a time. If adding sprinkles, make sure to do so before the candy melts harden.
  • Allow the coating to harden and enjoy!

If you follow this recipe, your cake balls should turn out great! But, if you are like us, your treats will not turn out exactly Pinterest worthy. So instead of just giving you a recipe, we are also going to give you a list of baking dos and don’ts.



DO: make tablespoon sized cake balls

DON’T: make the cake balls the size of golf balls

DO: allow the cake balls to sit in the fridge for the correct amount of time

DON’T: put the cake balls in the fridge for 30 minutes and immediately begin to coat them

DO: neatly coat the cake balls in candy melts

DON’T: throw the cake balls on a plate and try to roll them around with toothpicks (especially if they are not fully chilled)




Inspirational Women to Celebrate this Galentine’s Day

By Josie Fitz


Greta Gerwig

Greta Gerwig is a serious triple threat. She got her start as a playwright, began acting in college, and just recently made her directorial debut with Ladybird, for which she is best known. Gerwig is a perfect example of going out and chasing your dreams, and encourages girls just by doing so. She’s making waves in Hollywood for her honest commentary on what it’s like to be a teenage girl, and she is one of the only female directors in the running this awards season, inspiring many across the nation and around the world.



It seemed like the whole world was watching as P!NK belted out the National Anthem. What many didn’t know was that P!NK had the flu while doing so. P!NK always performs wonderfully, no matter what conditions she’s under. She performed at the 2014 Grammys while doing a trapeze act, and still managed to sing flawlessly. P!NK inspires us to set aside what’s holding us back and just go for it, and inspires us to be true to ourselves.


Our Moms

Whether we’d like to admit it or not, our mothers taught us almost everything we know. We strive to be like them and we admire all they do for us. So what better day to celebrate them than on Galentine’s Day? Use this day to remind your mom just how much you love her and how much she inspires you. Happy Galentine’s Day!