Running By Rachel Shupps, Daisy Belcher, and Makayla Durham

Who I Am


It’s who I am

Running since I was born, Mama tells me


to the marketplace, to the cleaners, to the park

Anywhere I go








No shoes on, just bare feet

PIt Pit Pit

on the ground as my feet go running


Helps my mind

Gets it off Papa, off Mama, off the Nazis

They’re coming soon, Amett told me

Running gets it all out of my mind


The Wolf Family

My family is everything to me

I would walk through fire for them

There's Mama,

She's as sweet as honey and peaches

Then there's Papa,

He can be tough, but

he gets sick a lot

Coughs, throws up, gets shaky, grows better

Amett, dear. Amett,

All I can say is that

I love him to death, but

he sure gets under my skin sometimes

Rufus is my beloved little husky, even though he

Gets bigger and bigger every second

We all do


Today was like no other

And here is why,

A knock on the door, it was

loud as the race horses’ hooves

Bam, Bam, Bam,

A deep voice outside

Will you and your son,

join us in the Nazi party.

the tears dripping down my face

like raindrops in a storm

Drip, Drip, Drip

My Papa’s shaky voice

I’m sorry, but I have to

deny your request. Good day.

the deep voice returning

It wasn’t a question, your family has three

weeks to consider. We

can talk about the consciences later.

My Papa slammed the door.

We must leave.

he whispered to Mama., but we all hear him

The Stare

Two more weeks till our escape

Papa gathered us after dinner to explain our route out of Germany

He wouldn’t look at us with his soft smile, though

only a stare-

at the wall

at the ground

at us

A stare so fierce he could burn a hole right through anything

He’s been that way ever since the voice came

It wasn’t a question,

your family has three weeks to consider

Repeating in my mind

Three weeks

Railroad Jobs

We got a job working at the railroad

to earn money for America

Fixing cars, replacing nails, pulling up old railing

Papa said that I don't have to

work if I don't want to but

I refused

I was not going to put all the work on the family.

It wasn't hard

just some scrapes and dirt

Mama told me to be careful, but I didn't listen

Papa said once we got enough money to

start a living in America we would

start packing our things


I want to take my doll

Papa says I don’t need it

we need to travel light he says

We are packing for America

and we are all stressed

we got through work

but now we need to get through our escape

we pray and pack

then pray some more

Rufus barks

Ruff, Ruff

calm down Rufus

We pack his food and

I sneak my doll in my case

Papa shouts Come, we are leaving

today he is acting as mean as a bear

A hungry bear

Sneaking Out

It’s the middle of the night when we leave

Phoebe, wake up, we have to go

We all have to shuffle out the door one at a time


Me and Rufus



carrying two bags each full of travel clothes,


bare essentials

Cover your faces and RUN,

run through the bushes

through the bushes

Dodge the cars



Running isn’t quite so fun anymore

The Middle

We’ve been on this darn boat for to long

Amett brought his piccolo

has been

Playing it to

“pass the time”

Mama was crying,

she said she was ok

I know she wasn't

Papa still had that stare in his eyes,

And it looked like he had made his face

like that permanently-

Forever stuck


Today we arrived

I don’t know what to do

where do we start

where do we go

where do we live

I don’t know

I feel





like a cow in the slaughter


Mama’s face makes me scared,

always worried, tired, nervous

Papa’s face makes me a little less scared

fierce, focused, determined

Amett, is just, I really don’t know

he’s gone blank

Rufus whines a lot

We have to start all over

Well Papa sighed

let’s get to work-

start to build our house

chop, chop Let’s go

Papa couldn’t stop coughing the whole way here

And now he just keep coughing

He can't say a sentence without COUGHING





He told us he’s fine but

we all know

he’s not

where do we start

where do we go

where do we live

12 years later …

I found my old journal

So many mixed emotions when I wrote it

The sorrow, the pain, the waiting

I almost broke into tears

Life has gotten better through the years

found a home and work where we came into the United States

in Georgia

I found the man that I need and love, Tyler

and we gave life to our beautiful daughter, Emma

Mama and I got a job at the local diner

while Tyler works as a blacksmith downtown

Amett moved to Vermont with Rufus

to work in the mines

There is some bad news, however

Papa died,

he was very ill on the way to America and it just kept getting


and worse

until he was lying down all of the time

We still remember him, pray for him

I still run when I can

Remembering my youth

to the marketplace, to the cleaners, to the park

Anywhere I go








Only this time,

two little legs trot beside me



Phoebe is a twelve year-old girl who loves to run

Anywhere she goes


But when Phoebe's family is forced to move to America, what will happen to that dream?


Created with images by Hunter-Desportes - "Riding Amtrak, ca. 1978" • SFB579 Namaste - "Husky" • Jack.Flanagan - "Two Roads" • Matthew Paul Argall - "Clouds and the ocean" • skeeze - "victorian house painted lady architecture"

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