by Stephanie Cui, grade 8


Out in the moonlight  

The trees are glowing white. 

They are fully dressed and await the wind’s call.  


But the wind is a shy girl at four in the morning,  

And she does not come out to play. 

Dawn slowly tip-toes, blueing the sky. 

I am lost on a path so familiar. 


Does darkness lock up my eyelids 

With a key that only belongs to dawn?  

I sneak by buildings,  

They seem unrealistic against the early light. 

Windows lit here and there, like the fading stars. 


My footsteps are shaky, 

My voice –the only echo remaining in the world. 

The sun rows the moon across the sky, claiming its throne.  

And I step into the day drunk with awe. 


Even though poets have long been praising the glories of the rising sun, this writer brings an original spin to the subject. The poet demonstrates an understanding of stanzas as an organizational element. Further, the writer employs a number of poetic devices and includes effective metaphors: “The wind is a shy girl…” or “The sun rows the moon across the sky…” Language used is clear and precise, and almost achingly fresh, as in the final line, stepping “into the day drunk with awe.” – junior Stursberg jury

LEAGUE OF CANADIAN POETS: What inspired you to write “Dawn”? 

STEPHANIE CUI: My poem “dawn” was based on my true experience with my uncle in an early morning.


LCP: How long have you been writing poetry?

SC: I’ve been writing poetry for almost four years, ever since I came to Canada in 2014.


LCP: Who are some of your favourite writers? 

SC: My favourite poet is Charles Baudelaire.


LCP: What are some of your favourite books? 

SC: One of my favourite books is Frankenstein. During spring break, I traveled to Ingolstadt — the town where Frankenstein created the monster. Now the novel fascinates me even more.


LCP: How do you see writing and poetry being a part of your life over the next several years?

SC: I will always express myself through writing, and I think there’s always room for improvement.


LCP: If you could give other students one piece of advice about writing, what would it be?

SC: I would tell them that no one is ever free, but let your writings be free.


LCP: What is your favourite thing about poetry? 

SC: My poems originate from my everyday life, but they can give my memories new meanings. Then, these memories would stay with me forever.