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Leave This Song Behind: Teen Poetry at Its Best

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It's been 10 years since the last book in the Teen Ink series Written in the Dirt was published. Now, a whole new batch of teen writers has emerged with their own unique voices. Leave This Song Behind features the best poetry submitted by those writers to Teen Ink over the last five years. The pieces in this book were chosen because they were so powerful that they stood o It's been 10 years since the last book in the Teen Ink series Written in the Dirt was published. Now, a whole new batch of teen writers has emerged with their own unique voices. Leave This Song Behind features the best poetry submitted by those writers to Teen Ink over the last five years. The pieces in this book were chosen because they were so powerful that they stood out from the rest. Teen Ink editors took a deep look into each poem's strengths then divided Leave This Song Behind into seven sections based on the poetic techniques or qualities that moved them most. Vivid sensory details made some poems shine; others caught their attention with simple, sparse language. Still others were chosen because of their thoughtful use of form; compelling stories; strong figurative language; unexpected connections and wit; and fresh writing about familiar topics. Dig in and let these brave young voices capture your heart and mind with their passion, their pain, and their amazing poetry!


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It's been 10 years since the last book in the Teen Ink series Written in the Dirt was published. Now, a whole new batch of teen writers has emerged with their own unique voices. Leave This Song Behind features the best poetry submitted by those writers to Teen Ink over the last five years. The pieces in this book were chosen because they were so powerful that they stood o It's been 10 years since the last book in the Teen Ink series Written in the Dirt was published. Now, a whole new batch of teen writers has emerged with their own unique voices. Leave This Song Behind features the best poetry submitted by those writers to Teen Ink over the last five years. The pieces in this book were chosen because they were so powerful that they stood out from the rest. Teen Ink editors took a deep look into each poem's strengths then divided Leave This Song Behind into seven sections based on the poetic techniques or qualities that moved them most. Vivid sensory details made some poems shine; others caught their attention with simple, sparse language. Still others were chosen because of their thoughtful use of form; compelling stories; strong figurative language; unexpected connections and wit; and fresh writing about familiar topics. Dig in and let these brave young voices capture your heart and mind with their passion, their pain, and their amazing poetry!

30 review for Leave This Song Behind: Teen Poetry at Its Best

  1. 5 out of 5

    Trinity Irwin

    “Leave This Song Behind” is a LOVELY collection of poems all written by teenagers. There is so much emotion within each one and a hidden story on each page that I thoroughly enjoyed getting to ponder. Poems are truly a whole other language than the one we speak on a constant basis. It aids in our escape to a place only our mind will allow us to go. A place where emotions can be felt in such an extreme way that is too beautiful for any other form. I want to thank “TEEN INK BOOK” for puttin “Leave This Song Behind” is a LOVELY collection of poems all written by teenagers. There is so much emotion within each one and a hidden story on each page that I thoroughly enjoyed getting to ponder. Poems are truly a whole other language than the one we speak on a constant basis. It aids in our escape to a place only our mind will allow us to go. A place where emotions can be felt in such an extreme way that is too beautiful for any other form. I want to thank “TEEN INK BOOK” for putting this together and sharing it with the world. I also want to thank all the teenage authors who contributed to the book and allowed me to wander through the depth of their soul for even a short visit. I love poems; all kinds of poems. But the poems that bring out me, my story, my heart, my emotions, MY song, those are the ones that stick with me. Here is a list of my top favorites in the book: 1) Year of the Dragon by Miriam Himelstein 2) Inverted Biography by Julie Yue 3) Souls Are Not Scientific by Anna Piper 4) Charcoal Boat by Callie Zimmerman 5) A Letter to the Past, Present, and Future Selves by Sofia Wesley 6) Orange Hospital Bracelet by Sophia Shelton 7) Genevieve Carnell by Moria Crowley 8) Another Poem About You and the Sink in Your Downstairs Bathroom by Angela Sabo 9) Sincerely, Perspective by Samantha Park 10) Prometheus by Eden Hartley 11) Pomegranate by Claudia Taylor 12) Don’t Fall in Love by Claire Podges 13) Knees on Neon by Sabrina Ortega-Riek 14) Soft by Mahalia Sobhani 15) Healing Old Wounds by Emily Dehr 16) The Day After by Eli Hiebart 17) One Summer by Shona Louisa Jackson 18) The Trooper by Charlotte Zaininger 19) Where Dandelions Roar by Breanna Bowers And I know that this review has nothing to do with Dead Poets Society but for those of you who love and respect that beautiful piece of film the way that I do, I’d like to say… *ahem* I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book Via NetGalley.

  2. 4 out of 5

    [Shai] Bibliophage

    Leave This Song Behind is a collection of poems that depicts different life situations teens experiences: such as depression, problems with parents, sexuality and love issues, to name a few. Teen poetry but a young adult, such as I, still can relate to some of the poems in this book. Several of these poems that I associate myself into are: Write What You Know by Mandy Seiner; Charcoal Boat by Callie Zimmerman; A Letter to the Past, Present, and Future Selves by Sofia Wesley; and Chinese Politics Leave This Song Behind is a collection of poems that depicts different life situations teens experiences: such as depression, problems with parents, sexuality and love issues, to name a few. Teen poetry but a young adult, such as I, still can relate to some of the poems in this book. Several of these poems that I associate myself into are: Write What You Know by Mandy Seiner; Charcoal Boat by Callie Zimmerman; A Letter to the Past, Present, and Future Selves by Sofia Wesley; and Chinese Politics (over dim sum) - Eda Tse. There are other poems that are quite remarkable, e.g., Don't Fall In Love by Claire Podges; and The Sistine Closet by Hannah Livernois. The selection of poems in this outstanding book will leave readers ponder whether they have experienced the same situation or currently in that state, which was described in each poem. If you are into poetry, having a copy of this impressive book should not be missed. Thanks to the publisher for the review copy of this.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Hirdesh

    "Poetry is language at its most distilled and most powerful." Thanks to Netgalley. Leave This song Behind- Epic poetry by great writers. Wonderful piece of imagination and flawless enthuciasm. I've enjoyed some poems, eminence and Juvenile and their propaganda & possessions wrapped into poetry. *Don;t fall in love Don;t fall in love with a girls who reads she'll overanalyze your every word and she ll nevr understand why people aren;t paperback and she'll write into your corners search for a plot into your "Poetry is language at its most distilled and most powerful." Thanks to Netgalley. Leave This song Behind- Epic poetry by great writers. Wonderful piece of imagination and flawless enthuciasm. I've enjoyed some poems, eminence and Juvenile and their propaganda & possessions wrapped into poetry. *Don;t fall in love Don;t fall in love with a girls who reads she'll overanalyze your every word and she ll nevr understand why people aren;t paperback and she'll write into your corners search for a plot into your veins and make a metaphor of your broken heart

  4. 4 out of 5

    Ariana

    Originally posted on: The Quirky Book Nerd This was a poetry collection that I wholeheartedly enjoyed. It is a wonderful and broad compendium of some of the fantastic teenage voices in the literary world. Full of beautiful prose and sentiment, these poems were stunningly thought-provoking and held such meaning and depth. It definitely shows the true power and significance of the written word, particularly that which comes from the mind of a young person. Each poem is so poignant and pure, which s Originally posted on: The Quirky Book Nerd This was a poetry collection that I wholeheartedly enjoyed. It is a wonderful and broad compendium of some of the fantastic teenage voices in the literary world. Full of beautiful prose and sentiment, these poems were stunningly thought-provoking and held such meaning and depth. It definitely shows the true power and significance of the written word, particularly that which comes from the mind of a young person. Each poem is so poignant and pure, which shows the beauty of the young mind. The writers have allowed themselves to enter the depths of their mind and soul, and bravely expressed what lies there. I absolutely love how much Teen Ink encourages young people to express themselves and find their voices. Poetry—and writing in general, really—was something that helped me a great deal during my teenage years once I discovered it. It was a way to get my feelings out when I felt like I had no other option. And I always felt very thankful to be in a situation where I had a lot of support and reassurance from the people in my life in regards to my pursuit of writing. It is wonderful to see that there are some great resources to give teenagers this much needed support. I truly enjoyed my reading experience. This is an important and highly inspiring collection of words that I hope many people will read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Layla (Between the Lines)

    “Don't fall in love with a girl who reads because she'll fall in love with last chapters and final words and the ending will always be her favourite part.” Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ARC of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Leave This Song Behind is a carefully curated collection of some of Teen Ink's best poetry submissions over the years. The submissions are categorized under common themes, senses, and emotions, but there is still a variety o “Don't fall in love with a girl who reads because she'll fall in love with last chapters and final words and the ending will always be her favourite part.” Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ARC of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Leave This Song Behind is a carefully curated collection of some of Teen Ink's best poetry submissions over the years. The submissions are categorized under common themes, senses, and emotions, but there is still a variety of voices and tones in each category. While the variety was nice, it does come across as a little bit choppy if you're the type of person who likes to read through an entire book in one sitting. Regardless, I really love how each section has so much to offer. Some of these poems were so poignant and full of experience that I kept forgetting they were written by teenagers. But I shouldn't be surprised. Adolescent voices have always been strong, just never listened to. I can't help but wonder if my poetry was this good when I was 17-years-old. Probably not. There were several submissions that stood out to me, but my favourites were The Sistine Closet by Moria Crowley, and Don't Fall in Love by Beatrice Waterhouse. Here are a few lines from The Sistine Closet that really hit me: Dear Michelangelo, When I can't sleep at night I wonder where you are now. I wonder if heaven exists. I wonder if God was waiting for you at the gates, If he looked at you and said "Don't listen to them. Of course you can come in. Of course you can come out now." Michelangelo, tell me there are no closets in heaven. Tell me I will be allowed to walk down the street Holding her hand. All in all, this is a wonderful collection of teen poetry. I wish I could have read something like this when I was younger, so I could have known that others my age felt as strongly as I did. *Actual rating: 3.5 stars Find me (and my reviews) elsewhere: My Blog ● Instagram ● Twitter

  6. 5 out of 5

    Clyo (Las Páginas de Alex)

    I've been trying to write this for half an hour, but I think I finally got it straight. Thank you very much to NetGalley and the Publisher for providing me with a copy of this book. This is a poetry collection that puts together some of the best submitions Teen Ink has had over some years. It's divided according to the different types of narrative, and it's really interesting to read. Some of this poems are written with such complexity I had some trouble remembering teenagers wrote them. I was ca I've been trying to write this for half an hour, but I think I finally got it straight. Thank you very much to NetGalley and the Publisher for providing me with a copy of this book. This is a poetry collection that puts together some of the best submitions Teen Ink has had over some years. It's divided according to the different types of narrative, and it's really interesting to read. Some of this poems are written with such complexity I had some trouble remembering teenagers wrote them. I was captured by their writing and stories and so grateful to be able to read such confessions. That being said, the actual reading felt a bit awkward. The way the poems are separated results in reading poems that while similar in form cover totally different topics and subjects. This had me reading about break ups on pair or everyday objects and really simple things. Separately this poems are incredible but together they blur in a big mess. This isn't necessarily bad, because you could buy it and read a poem each time you had a bit of down time or while on the bus or car. But for people like me that enjoy reading the entire book in one or two sittings this felt a bit too forced. I can't say I loved the book because I was incredibly uncomfortable with the topic changing, but I definitely loved the poems and will continue to re-read them one at the time to enjoyh them separately.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lili Marcus

    Leave this Song Behind is a collection of poems written by teenagers. When I was younger, I consider myself more of a poet than a novelist. I don't know what happened why i lost my passion and so I was so excited to read this collection of poems. I read all of them in one sitting. Then I felt like something is wrong, I couldn't figure it out that I couldn't even write a review. So I reread it again because I just so love reading poems. :) This time though, I read them differently. A poem a day. O Leave this Song Behind is a collection of poems written by teenagers. When I was younger, I consider myself more of a poet than a novelist. I don't know what happened why i lost my passion and so I was so excited to read this collection of poems. I read all of them in one sitting. Then I felt like something is wrong, I couldn't figure it out that I couldn't even write a review. So I reread it again because I just so love reading poems. :) This time though, I read them differently. A poem a day. Or a poem each sitting. It's a technique I usually use in reading collection of short stories and essays. Poems, not normally because they are shorter. Anyway, I figured out what's wrong. Individually, the poems are amazing. Some will touched my heart and some blew my mind. And I didn't even think in a moment that they were written by teenagers. I got lost in some of the poems because of how beautifully written and constructed they are. Some even are eye-openers. But here's the thing, together, the poems lost a little of their appeal. Because not all of them connect with each other. some are deep, some aren't. It's as if some of the poems were just thrown in there. So I suggest reading the each poem as an individual art not as part of a collection. *I was given a copy by the publisher thru Netgalley for an exchange of an honest review.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Becca (Coffeebooksandjournals)

    I have this a 2/5 stars. I didn’t really care for any of these poems. None of them stuck out to me or made me feel much. I liked how they wrote about different things, I didn’t dislike them but I didn’t totally like them either. I just found them to be okay. Thank you to net galley for this earc.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ankita Singh

    First of all, thanks to NetGalley and TeenInk for giving me a chance to read and review this book! Leave This Song Behind is a collection of absolutely beautiful and meaningful poems! The fact that all of the poems are written by teenagers only adds to its charms. I enjoyed all of the poems. They were deep, meaningful and absolutely beautiful. Though I did enjoy them all, some of them became my favorites. 'Year Of The Dragon by Miriam Himelstein', 'A Letter to the Past, Present and Future Selves by First of all, thanks to NetGalley and TeenInk for giving me a chance to read and review this book! Leave This Song Behind is a collection of absolutely beautiful and meaningful poems! The fact that all of the poems are written by teenagers only adds to its charms. I enjoyed all of the poems. They were deep, meaningful and absolutely beautiful. Though I did enjoy them all, some of them became my favorites. 'Year Of The Dragon by Miriam Himelstein', 'A Letter to the Past, Present and Future Selves by Sofia Wesley', were some of my favorites while 'The Sistine Closet by Hannah Livernois' was my absolute favorite! Though at times I spotted some punctuation mistakes and the page formatting was a bit confusing, the poems were absolutely beautiful and I loved them all!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Cindy

    3.5 stars!!! Reading this book took me back to my youth. And to the youth I never got to experience. There was so much feelings. So much that it claws to my heart. Honestly, however, the poems that started the book were not as powerful as the ones in the middle, so other readers might find it hard to read it continuously. It's not my first time to read a book of poetry, but I can say that I like how the poems were grouped in a way that could build up the emotions of the readers. The only thing th 3.5 stars!!! Reading this book took me back to my youth. And to the youth I never got to experience. There was so much feelings. So much that it claws to my heart. Honestly, however, the poems that started the book were not as powerful as the ones in the middle, so other readers might find it hard to read it continuously. It's not my first time to read a book of poetry, but I can say that I like how the poems were grouped in a way that could build up the emotions of the readers. The only thing that hindered me from marking it five stars was the difference of the number of good poems with the averaged ones. I can't say that it's bad to gather ideas from different authors, but let's admit that they're not of the same levels. Anyways, Leave This Song Behind is a well-thought book idea that I'm sure can touch and inspire many teens. Or the non-teens just like me.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Elena

    I liked some of the poems in here, and I like the idea of how it is young writers poetry. However I didn't like the method that was used to split the poems into categorises. I think instead of being split up because of the way they were constructed or written, they should have been split into different feelings, themes and experiences that the poems were talking about. I did enjoy reading the poems, but the categorising method just made it feel like the poem were being organised randomly and were I liked some of the poems in here, and I like the idea of how it is young writers poetry. However I didn't like the method that was used to split the poems into categorises. I think instead of being split up because of the way they were constructed or written, they should have been split into different feelings, themes and experiences that the poems were talking about. I did enjoy reading the poems, but the categorising method just made it feel like the poem were being organised randomly and were just one after another without a general trend or theme.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Kris

    Thanks to #netgalley for providing me with a copy in return for an honest review. There is some absolutely amazing poetry in here. As with any anthology, there were some that I liked more than others, but overall, the quality here is high. My personal favorites were The Sistine Closet, Pomegranate, Don’t Fall in Love, Nine months and all the seconds, and I’ll massage your tense shoulders. There were some issues with organization and formatting, but the content is excellent.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Dezel Marie Ocampo

    2.5 stars! "Poetry is language at its most distilled and most powerful." *Thank you to NetGalley and the Publisher for providing me with a copy of this book.* Another poetry book I finished last week this time a collection of entries submitted by teenagers to Teen Ink. Some of the best were chosen and put together to create this book. I admit that I found this one different from the other poetry books I've read but this is as lovely just the same. Sometimes I forgot that teenagers actually wrote 2.5 stars! "Poetry is language at its most distilled and most powerful." *Thank you to NetGalley and the Publisher for providing me with a copy of this book.* Another poetry book I finished last week this time a collection of entries submitted by teenagers to Teen Ink. Some of the best were chosen and put together to create this book. I admit that I found this one different from the other poetry books I've read but this is as lovely just the same. Sometimes I forgot that teenagers actually wrote these poems and while I liked some, the others just didn't make sense to me which I think was okay. It's divided into sections, each with style and impact of its own. I also can't say that I loved this one since there where times when I skipped pages especially when I can't connect with the words. Don't get me wrong, there are some which I really liked but I think the book as a whole isn't just for me.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    I enjoyed most of these poems but, it took me a little longer to read than normal. Maybe if it would’ve been more organized into related sections I wouldn’t have been a little confused on the rest of them. However, the poetry was very well written and I would read more from the majority of the poets.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Ann T

    Thank you HCI Books and Netgalley for this ARC. I thoroughly enjoyed this book of poetry, written by a variety of people and many teens. A lovely book that has encourage me to read more of this genre.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Zara

    Teens like this need more recognition.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Literati Girl

    Poetry is not just for grown-ups or those trying to woo a lover. The Leave This Song Behind collection of teen poetry by Teen Ink is proof that poetry can be found everywhere in life. The collection features some of the best teen poetry of today. Reflecting teen culture, many of the poems adhere to a more free-verse style as is evident in modern slams. This collection contains some real gems of poetry, like Bluebells, Dear Michaelangelo, Don't Fall In Love, and A Letter To The Past, Present, and Poetry is not just for grown-ups or those trying to woo a lover. The Leave This Song Behind collection of teen poetry by Teen Ink is proof that poetry can be found everywhere in life. The collection features some of the best teen poetry of today. Reflecting teen culture, many of the poems adhere to a more free-verse style as is evident in modern slams. This collection contains some real gems of poetry, like Bluebells, Dear Michaelangelo, Don't Fall In Love, and A Letter To The Past, Present, and Future Selves. What really becomes evident is that this generation deals with some real and uly problems, deeply human flaws and raw emotions - and sometimes the best way to express all of these feelings is through poetry. With a collection of poems by several different authors, it is only natural that not all poems are to a reader's individual tastes. Because while there are some really beautiful and touching works in this collection, there are also a few which come across as overly pretentious. One run-on sentence in a weird format - like every wors in a new line - does not necessarily make a poem. And even though many of the poems deal with depression, selfworth issues, and unrequited love, the teen angst seems to be a red thread throughout the whole book. It is a nicely edited book. The poems are split into different sections, which makes it easy to find a poem you are in the mood for. There are even notes by the poets, but unfortunately, these are at the very end of the book. Personally, I would have prefered to have the notes close to the poems they relate to, as the flipping back and forth does get tiresome. Another issue is that the best poems are towards the middle of the book, and the beginning of the collection is not as powerful as it should by rights be in order to draw the reader in. Leave This Song Behind is a nice poetry collection which gives a unique insight into the problems teenagers of today have to deal with, but it could have made even more of an impact than it does.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    I am not going to mince my words. This was AWESOME! I am a big fan of poetry and make it a part of my English classroom on a daily basis. A lot of the poems had a very free-verse, 'slam' type of style that really illustrated the authentic voices of teens today. I had two personal favorites, 'Dear Michelangelo', and this poem, which I will post; I'll massage your tense shoulders I've never wanted to be thin white cotton until today when you lifted your arms to stretch and I couldn't help but wonder h I am not going to mince my words. This was AWESOME! I am a big fan of poetry and make it a part of my English classroom on a daily basis. A lot of the poems had a very free-verse, 'slam' type of style that really illustrated the authentic voices of teens today. I had two personal favorites, 'Dear Michelangelo', and this poem, which I will post; I'll massage your tense shoulders I've never wanted to be thin white cotton until today when you lifted your arms to stretch and I couldn't help but wonder how wide your wingspan would be and how close you could get to the sun with those shoulders of yours (Chelsea McCoyle) Seriously, doesn't that writer just take you back to your high school years when you would eye your crush? Somehow, I think a lot of teens could related to it too. I would definitely recommend this collection to any high school teacher. Thanks to Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for a review.

  19. 5 out of 5

    ReadingWhiskers

    I really enjoyed this book very much! I have recently been really into poetry and into writing poetry as well and a lot of these poems that these teenagers wrote were magnificent!! Being a teenager, I could relate to a lot of what they were saying. Another thing I loved about this book was how organized it was from poem to poem, it was a very simple/easy read and I found my self going to this book when I was in a very poetic mood and just wanted to hear someone else's views on life. I'm sorry th I really enjoyed this book very much! I have recently been really into poetry and into writing poetry as well and a lot of these poems that these teenagers wrote were magnificent!! Being a teenager, I could relate to a lot of what they were saying. Another thing I loved about this book was how organized it was from poem to poem, it was a very simple/easy read and I found my self going to this book when I was in a very poetic mood and just wanted to hear someone else's views on life. I'm sorry this review took so long to put up, I've just been super super busy. Especially with my finals that had finally just passed. Thank God! Overall I really enjoyed this Collection of Poetry's and I definitely would recommend it to readers who are in more of a poetic mood or just want to hear what teenagers think of life, their life, others life, Ect. Don't know where I was going with that hahah!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Palabasalibro

    I'm a sucker for poetry books, so I really wanted to read this one. I wasn't disappointed cause I really liked the book. However I wish it had more inspirational works in them than some other poems in there. I did have a favorite, it was 'a letter to the past, present and future selves'. Reading the book, I wished there were more works like that in there.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    *2.5 stars This was interesting and quick to read. Every poem is lyrical and have beautiful description, and every poem is written by someone else. I do feel like I would have enjoyed it more in a different format or if the ebook I read, was more organized like a paperback. I couldn’t always figure out if a sentence was supposed to be on a certain line or if it wasn’t.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Angelia Katsianos

    I'm glad that teens out there are finding ways to get their voices heard. There were some great poems in here. The ones that stuck out the most to. E were the ones about issues. Sexuality, health, etc. These teens have a way with words, with syntax, that their older counterparts may not grasp.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Hristina

    If this is the future of poetry, then sign me up. Such wonderful, fun and interesting poems from a fresh perspective. I can't even pick a favorite one.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Tine’s Reviews

    I just couldn't continue reading this.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Stacie

    Leave This Song Behind, edited by John Meyer, Stephanie Meyer, Adam Halwitz & Cindy Spertner, is a poetry collection comprised of the best Teen Ink poems written in the last five years. Teen Ink is a monthly poetry magazine which accepts submissions from young writers age 13-19 years old. Teen Ink also has a thriving web community (www.teenink.com) with writer's forums, workshops, contests and guides to summer & college programs. Even before reading this collection of poems, I was applauding Tee Leave This Song Behind, edited by John Meyer, Stephanie Meyer, Adam Halwitz & Cindy Spertner, is a poetry collection comprised of the best Teen Ink poems written in the last five years. Teen Ink is a monthly poetry magazine which accepts submissions from young writers age 13-19 years old. Teen Ink also has a thriving web community (www.teenink.com) with writer's forums, workshops, contests and guides to summer & college programs. Even before reading this collection of poems, I was applauding Teen Ink for supporting poetry and artistic expression for teenagers. It is through poetry that I began exploring the world around me as a teen, and arguably that is why poetry is still my first love as both a reader and writer today. To have the support of not only teachers, but others in our literary communities is crucial. Today, resources like Teen Ink are paving the way for new writers to explore writing in a myriad of ways. The poetry in Leave This Song Behind is as varied as our cultural and musical histories, informed by the young writer's plethora of life experiences in their short years. The collection is broken into sections based on different writing style or themes. Some are more sensory in nature than others, some pieces contain spare yet moving language, others make surprising connections - while still others tackle everyday subjects or objects in fresh ways. What all of the poems have in droves is emotion, and because they are written from the perspectives of teenagers, I wasn't surprised. What other time of life is so filled with change and uncertainty, with both joy & sadness - fear & anticipation often felt in the same breath? Poetry is fueled by those who give voice to powerful emotions and life experiences, and so it is that teens can astonish us with how they craft words. And though their words may, in some cases, feel raw and un-revised - this is also, I think, at the heart of what contemporary poetry is today. It is rough around the edges, it is newly formed, and it is very diverse. And perhaps that is the best reason to pick up this poetry collection. To read the writing of young people who took a risk and made their voices heard, adding their words to a rising cacophony of diverse voices around the world. Through the noise, if we listen, we can hear beautiful music that deserves to be played, along with rhyme, meter and metaphor that dance from the pages to form our hearts. Those hearts are filled with the poetry of our interconnected lives. And that is a beautiful thing. *I received a free copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Krystal Ortiz

    This poetry collection, compiled by the editors of Teen Ink, was a surprising and refreshing read. The quality and content of the poetry was at a much higher caliber than I expected for high school students. The poetry collected and representing a unique array of Teen Ink's writers was very sophisticated, very mature and stylistically clever, clearly the best of the best. Sometimes in reading the poems, I honestly would forget I was reading something written by a teenager. Many of the poems had This poetry collection, compiled by the editors of Teen Ink, was a surprising and refreshing read. The quality and content of the poetry was at a much higher caliber than I expected for high school students. The poetry collected and representing a unique array of Teen Ink's writers was very sophisticated, very mature and stylistically clever, clearly the best of the best. Sometimes in reading the poems, I honestly would forget I was reading something written by a teenager. Many of the poems had a "wise beyond their years" tone to them. I often was waiting for a poem that stood out from the rest, more so for sounding stereotypically "teen" and not as thoughtful and vivid as the other poems. But that didn't happen. All the entries in this collection were strong, solid poems. I liked how the collection was organized. It was separated into 7 chapters, some broken down by theme and others by style. Each chapter started with its title, a quick one sentence or phrase about it, a quote that encompassed that theme and then about a dozen or so poems. I enjoyed the content of the poems as well, not just all about love or friendship, heartbreak or sadness. Poems were about things as simple as eating a pomegranate to as complex as sexual orientation and death. If I could make one critique about the book, it was that the teen author's name was listed under each poem but with no other info or context. At the end, there was a "poets notes" section where each writer had a chance to briefly say what their poem was inspired by. It was interesting to read but required a lot of flipping back and forth to refresh my mind on some of the poems (which was not easy to do in an e-book!). I understand why for visual and format purposes the editors included this information at the end, but it would have been nice to have that context right away. I would recommend this book for high school students. Some of the topics and themes are a bit mature, as is some of the language, so it would definitely not be used below high school. It would be useful in a school library or a classroom library. As far as the content, it would not be useful in teaching poetry itself, but could be a good supplement to show the use of techniques like imagery, sensory details, similes and metaphors, and other figurative language found throughout the poems. Most of those have chapters dedicated to them, so it would fairly easy to pull out poems to use as examples for students who are either reading or writing their own poems. For creative writers, this is also a great resource for them to learn about Teen Ink and see how regular teens like them have become published poets.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Bran Diyanne

    Leave This Song Behind is a published book of teen written poetry. April is National Poetry Month and what better way to celebrate this then by reading a book of poetry written by today's youth. It's been 10 years since the last book in the Teen Ink series Written in the Dirt was published. Today's teen writers have emerged with their own unique voices. Leave This Song Behind features some great poetry submitted by those writers to Teen Ink over the last five years. I was lucky enough to get the o Leave This Song Behind is a published book of teen written poetry. April is National Poetry Month and what better way to celebrate this then by reading a book of poetry written by today's youth. It's been 10 years since the last book in the Teen Ink series Written in the Dirt was published. Today's teen writers have emerged with their own unique voices. Leave This Song Behind features some great poetry submitted by those writers to Teen Ink over the last five years. I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to read this Ebook before it will be released to the public for purchase on April 26th, 2016. There are a variety of poems to read in this book on so many different subjects and thoughts. Some poems are only a couple sentences long and others have several paragraphs. There are no chapters in this book, but there are 216 pages of reading material. The authors have also included different quotes about poetry throughout this book too. Reflecting back to when I was the age 14, this is when I wrote my first poem. At times, I could connect to some of the young writers and with others there was a lack of "getting it" on what they had written. There were some amazingly unique poems that almost seemed to come from a voice of an adult. The true poets look, listen, wonder, and feel at any age. Whether it be by astonishment, love, heartbreak, humor, or the desire to right injustice; they will write it down. In summary, there are about 100 different poems that were chosen to be published in this new book from the Teen Ink Magazine. I think any teen who chooses to read this will surely find a poem that will resonate with them. The only thing that I believe would have been more beneficial is to know not only the name of the writer attached to the poem, but their age as well. As a reader, I was curious about just that and if I wanted to know that information, I had to go to the index (end of the book) to find out. Also, the spacing seems a bit off in the Kindle version. The poems and titles seemed to all run together, making it harder to tell when one poem starts and when one ends. * I did receive a free Ebook copy of this book through Net Gallery, in exchange for sharing my honest and unbiased review. Thank you. *

  28. 4 out of 5

    D_Fox

    She She sometimes makes me want to tense the tendors on my neck and send my head smashing into my keyboard and maybe my skin and bones would, as they snapped and fractired, hit just the right keys and type a jumbed ode to beauty and wealth, forgotten forever when the circuits spark and smoke and the little copper nodes on the hard drive dig into my eyebrow and its brittle white pastic shell snaps and splinters. Charles S. Siler I kept going back to this particular piece of the book for maybe three She She sometimes makes me want to tense the tendors on my neck and send my head smashing into my keyboard and maybe my skin and bones would, as they snapped and fractired, hit just the right keys and type a jumbed ode to beauty and wealth, forgotten forever when the circuits spark and smoke and the little copper nodes on the hard drive dig into my eyebrow and its brittle white pastic shell snaps and splinters. Charles S. Siler I kept going back to this particular piece of the book for maybe three days in a row.... The case with poetry is often that it's not understandable. I don' mean the language barrier I am standing if front of sometimes, but the emotional one. I've read so much classic poetry that never really spoke to me. Leave this song behind, despite the fact it was written by teens, somehow was my type of poetry. It kind of caught me off guard, I didn't expect to read pieces about God, for example: "I do't think I feel a God inside me. I feel uncertainty, and blood, and bones." Do we stop questioning God once we grow older?.... This little gem of a book is the type of poerty, or modern writing I want to show my students in my attempts to inspire them to be themselves more often, or make them see they are understood. Even when they 're angry, unsure or confused. As an attempt of a conclusion I'd like to share my other favorite piece from the book : Food and Wine you're burnt onto the bottom of everything I know, like a bone , or a bad joke, I choke you out whole, of course and wipe the blood from my mouth pick you out of my teeth and stare emotionless and the black mess at the bottom of the pan, take a drink from the bottle in my hand only to discover your spiits burning the back of my throat, fermented years ago and just now opened and it's too late you've already intoxicated me again, I can feel the world slowly falling away ; fork falls to table, glass falls to floor in a crash splatter tinkle carpet stain and the rest of you takes root impossible to remove as my poisoned frame lands on the rug we bought together last spring. **Copy was kindly provided to me by NetGalley**

  29. 5 out of 5

    Tabinda Mustershad

    Write What You Know don’t know calculus. I don’t know why the quadratic formula is important. I don’t know what they put in hot dogs or how to make people like me, and despite 150 hours spent sitting in a classroom, I still don’t know anything about chemistry. But I do know how to make coffee. I know how to make my best friend laugh. I know how to properly annotate a text (thanks to my ninth-grade English teacher) and I know what makes rainbows appear. I know why Simon Bolivar said “Let’s go, as fast as we can. No Write What You Know don’t know calculus. I don’t know why the quadratic formula is important. I don’t know what they put in hot dogs or how to make people like me, and despite 150 hours spent sitting in a classroom, I still don’t know anything about chemistry. But I do know how to make coffee. I know how to make my best friend laugh. I know how to properly annotate a text (thanks to my ninth-grade English teacher) and I know what makes rainbows appear. I know why Simon Bolivar said “Let’s go, as fast as we can. No one loves us here,” before leaving for exile in Europe, because I know how it feels to live in a place where no love exists. I know that orchids are the ugliest of flowers, that’s why I keep one in my house at all times, and I know why my grandmother cried when I told her I wanted to go into the arts. I don’t know if God exists, but I know that morality does. I don’t know how to work the Cylindrical Shell Method or solve for the integral of a power series, but I do know how to keep my seven-year-old cousin from crying. And I’d take that over calculus any day. by Mandy Seiner. Academic Thoughts I think the whole world exists on a number line all between one and negative one That's as far as cosine will exist That's as far as the periodic table goes, too, with the first group's charge of +1 and the seventeenth's charge of -1, except for the noble gasses, which I suppose then must be outside the realm of provable fact. Perhaps they are magic. Hannah says, "What is magic but a highly advanced science?" And once in chemistry she said, "I think God is a wave." No one with as many thoughts as that could exist between one and negative one. And there are more like her. They must bleed over into twos and fives and threes and eights, into colors and noble gasses, into undefined. Outside the realm of provable fact. Out where God is. Where the waves are. by Erika Cook.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Eline

    Pages: 220 Genre: poetry     Synopsis "Leave this song behind" features the best poetry from many teen writers that has contributed to Teen Ink. The topics and styles varies widely, and all the poems are divided into seven sections based on techniques and theme. In this collection is all from simple, thought-provoking poems to longer ones that paint vivid images with their carefully selected words. My thoughts Rating out of five: I think there's something a lot of "adult" poets can learn from these teen Pages: 220 Genre: poetry     Synopsis "Leave this song behind" features the best poetry from many teen writers that has contributed to Teen Ink. The topics and styles varies widely, and all the poems are divided into seven sections based on techniques and theme. In this collection is all from simple, thought-provoking poems to longer ones that paint vivid images with their carefully selected words. My thoughts Rating out of five: I think there's something a lot of "adult" poets can learn from these teenagers in that not every poem in a collection needs to be about the same thing described over and over. This collection had a lot of variation, surely because the poets behind it are so different personalities and it was nice to read through the different styles and themes. It also seemed to have made the collection especially difficult to fit together, as the subject of a poem can range from death and hospital visits to more light-hearted humor in a few pages. It wasn't always obvious that the writers were teenagers in the writing itself, most of them did a much better job than I could've and my (untrained) eyes see a lot of talent in here. But inexperience was more obvious in the subjects that were written about and, even though I'm sure I'm the same age as a lot of them, that decreased my interest some while reading. There were some poems in here that almost made me tear up, or that communicated something to me, among a lot that didn't. All in all, this seem like a fantastic project and I'm glad it exists to encourage young poets and creativity!

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