Love Feels Like Freedom

Anthology of Poetry

Love Feels Like Freedom is an anthology of poetry by the third grade students of 457X, Sheridan Academy for Young Leaders. During the twenty days we had together, students discussed the writing of Sandra Cisneros, Walt Whitman, Aracelis Girmay, Franz Kafka, Christina Rossetti and others. Students engaged in an extensive study of the great Harlem poet, Langston Hughes.

Click to read full anthology!

Students learned how to use hyperbole, metaphor, simile, alliteration, personification and to  they practiced using their imagination to enliven their writing.

This is the second year that I have worked with these creative children, and it is inspiring to see how much they remembered, and how much more they are willing to learn. We hope that each one of these young writers will continue to play with language and to explore poetry.

We are grateful to the teachers who welcomed us into their classrooms and who were active collaborators in our lessons. Whether connecting our lesson to the school curriculum, walking around helping students with their poems, or sharing poems they wrote themselves, they have added their own unique contribution to the experience.

This anthology could not have been possible without the collaboration of the teachers and aides. Thank you to Ms. Cohen, Ms. Kouakou, Ms. Pimentel, Ms. Weiner and Ms. Wright and paraprofessional, Mr. Jusino. We thank you for your enthusiasm and dedication to these young students. We are grateful to have been part of this team.

We thank Principal, Ms. Febus and Assistant Principal, Mrs. Pevey for inviting us into the school once again. Thank you for your warmth and for always making time for us when we needed help! Thank you for cherishing the arts and for your commitment to celebrating the arts in your school.

With Love, 
Alba Delia Hernández & Virginia Valenzuela


Rainbow Cloud
by Ashley (3rd grade)

Love is as
As an

Is calling
Me when I

Is sweet
A lollipop

My heart
Like an apple

My love is
A rainbow
Of joy

Love is
As a bird

Love smells
A strawberry

My heart
Is a
That’s called
Rainbow Cloud.

Virginia Valenzuela is a poet, essayist, and yogi originally from Manhattan. She holds BA degrees in creative writing, literary studies, and women’s studies, and a minor in film studies. She is a second-year MFA candidate in poetry and creative nonfiction at The New School. She is a writer at The Warblr, curator of The New School After Hours reading series, and Prose Editor of LIT. Virginia’s poetry has appeared on the Best American Poetry Blog. She is a 2017–2018 education associate at T&W.