California Coastal Commission

Right Column

2009 Coastal Art & Poetry Contest Honorable Mentions


Grades K-3


Sea Urchins

“Sea Urchins”
Caitlin Archdeacon, kindergarten, San Jose


"On the Beach"

On the beach
Do you see what I see?

I see the waves.
I see the sand
between my toes
cool and warm
as it comes and goes.

Tyler Clark-Faugier, 2nd grade, Pacifica



Treasure of the Sea
“Treasure of the Sea"
Regina Kong, 3rd grade, Kensington


"The Soul of the Sun"

I remember walking
in the quiet quiet forest
and seeing flowers
white as soft clouds
of cotton candy
walking by
I would save a picture in my mind
of the sun setting down
on the clear blue Mendocino ocean

Geneva Stefani, 2nd grade, Mendocino


“Two California Pelicans”
Gina Rose Partridge, 1st grade, San Jose


"Crashing Waves"

I can hear crashing waves
Even from miles away.
Some people can't hear it like I can
But I can hear the sea calling me.
Even on a rainy day in the gloom
I can still find a way.
In the dust of dawn
I know where I belong...
By the crashing waves

Lucie Reiss, 3rd grade, Los Angeles


Harbor Seals’ Lounge

“Harbor Seals’ Lounge”
Audrey Tsai, 3rd grade, La Jolla



Old as the Earth
Clear blue Water
Every day you're different
And so many fish
Never stopping.

Henry James Jorrick, 3rd grade, Bella Vista

Grades 4-6

Foreign Eyes

"Foreign Eyes"
Marlena Becker, 6th grade, Laguna Beach



Watch the waves
Crash on the rocks
The birds above
In their flocks

The sand fills your senses
From the nose to the toes
The warm sun surrounds you
As the clouds come and go

There is no where
You'd rather be
The beach in you
The beach in me

Kayla Gucciardo, 6th grade, Camarillo


Coastal Sunset
“Coastal Sunset”
Mikey Hawker, 5th grade, Santa Barbara


"Run away kite"

wind blows in my face
running with friends
drinking soda
holding onto string

laughing like a hyena
something is
jumping jackals

I let go of the
it runs along the windy beach
waiting to be caught

Philip Huang, 6th grade, San Francisco



 “Evening Glory at the Ocean”
 Sahil Khullar, 6th grade, Granada Hills



Standing high
Above the beautiful blue-green waves
Slowly, gently keeping time
Crashing against the gradually receding face
Stretching for miles above the ocean blue.

AJ McCalla, 4th grade, Sebastopol



 Jacob Lui, 5th grade, San Marino



Whale, tail flicking
Sends drops sparkling
Into the sky
Golden in the
Fading sun
Enveloped by the waves

Fish flickering
A shimmering mass
A school
Swimming, eating,
Being eaten

A red can glimmers lying in the sand
Dented, bent, rusted, "coke"
Of glass

On the reef
Sea anemone
Hiding creatures in need of help
Waving: Hello,

Waves and foam
Bluish green
Dives deep
Into dark

Henri Wood, 5th grade, Menlo Park


Grades 7-9
Sharks in Half Moon Bay

 “Sharks in Half Moon Bay”
Deanna Chung, 9th grade, Los Altos Hills



This vast expanse
Of nothing and everything
A wide, mysterious world
Under the multi-faceted truth
The surface

The water has no history
A timeless being
Cloaking the world under
Beauty embodied

The ruthless master time
Does not drag his harsh
Over the face of the
Ocean, defacing it
For it cannot
the ocean seamlessly
Slips through the grasping
fingers of time
Oh! To be the Ocean!

The ocean never tries
It may seem
To pull you closer
To want to take something
away from you It does not try
It never wanted to
make you long for something
you can't remember
The part of you
your mind simply cannot reach
It never wanted suffering

The Ocean is
guilty yet
playful yet

The Ocean
Obeys no one
The sailor who
Begins to think
Of control
Lost in one tiny
An instant of effort
In an undulating effortless
Gem that hides
Marvelous, wondrous secrets
a crab
a garibaldi
a mermaid
a tragedy
Life that continues
On through the
Ocean beauty

Dory Graham, 8th grade, Pacific Palisades



False Advertisement

“False Advertisement”
Lidiya Illyashova, 8th grade, Fremont


"Shell Sanctuary"

We need to find a place where we are safe,
a secret garden,
a haven in the midst of the earth.
a place where no worries dare lurk.
for me, such a shelter is the beach.
the ocean's stable flow,
its fearsome crashing,
and its inhabitants, slight, little inhabitants,
grasping onto the sand that pulls them to the shore.
their simple complexion of whirling, winding lines creating their spoken words,
for shells do speak;
if you listen closely, you will hear them murmur their solemn, soprano tunes.
When I feel their presence, delicate and soggy in my hands,
I feel solitary, yet not alone.
I don't feel protected,
but with my little collection, I feel safe.

Éléonore Dambre, 7th grade, Encinitas


“Heron at Monterey Bay with Sealife”
Rebecca Rubin, 9th grade, Davis


"Salty Mist"

With my feet planted firmly
On the dry, slivery dock
I look out across the vast, turquoise ocean
The sound of waves crashing
On the shifting pebbles
Is intriguing me
Into the ocean's cooling arms
The warm wind sifting through my weightless hair
Salty mist drifting onto my legs
Sending a delightful chill throughout my whole body
Finally, my knees start to bend
My arms swing above my head
I leap into the air
Everything went into slow motion
I felt like I was flying
My fingertips slip into the water
Followed by the rest of my body
The thick water surrounding me
As I descend into the slippery seaweed
Tickling me all over
Little bubbles following my toes
I point my body towards the surface
I swim up to it
I bob on top of the water like a boat
Gazing up at the sky
It's perfect
I'll stay here forever.

Kayla Jones, 8th grade, Point Arena


Bottlenose Dolphin

“Bottlenose Dolphin”
Carolyn Sy, 9th grade, Foster City


"Eyes of the Sea"

No one knew the age of the man
Who walked all day on the sunlit sands
His sea-green eyes pierced the souls of all
Who passed him by, to make their spirits fall
His wizened hands were white as chalk and
When the sea washed o'er the path of his walk
It dissolved the evidence to leave no trace
The sea-waves battered a consistent race
For only they knew how old was the man
Who walked all day on the sunlit sands.

Great was the age of the old, old man
Who stood alone on the moonlit sands
The darkened waves, plush't white with foam
Never seemed to hold their own
But, pushed and pulled in the tide of the moon,
lep't and danced to the sea-gull's tune
And here and there a silvery flash
revealed a school of blue Kelp Bass
For they also knew how old was the man
Who stood alone on the moonlit sands.

The morning dew had aged with the man
Who walked alway on the dappled sands
Waking seagulls grey and white
Shook their feather'd wings to flight
The stone-faced man reached out his hand
A seagull stretched its wings to land
And stared unblinking at old man wise
With round and black and sparkling eyes
Kenn'd he of a gull who knew the man
When he flew beside him on the dappled sands.

Well his ancestor had known the man
When they moved together o'er the pearly sands
Together, together, when the man was a boy
Both of their hearts would leap for joy
At the smell of fish, the slap of the waves,
The song of the birds, and the sight they most craved:
A wood-plank't vessel, with men who'd hail
To the boy to come for adventure to sail! Ah,
Well the whales and the fish knew the lad
Who for the clear sea left all he had had.

But now no one knows the age of the man
Who walks all day on the sunlit sands
Those he knew, those friends of old
have passed away, their tales untold
None are left of the 'venturous band
Who sought for gold in foreign lands
Who risked their lives for the blue's frenzy
Except the old man and the bounding sea;
Now only they know how very old is he
Who walks all day on the cinders by the Sea.

Karis Tanksley, 9th grade, Oceanside

Grades 10-12


Caspian Terns

“Caspian Terns”
Alona Bach, 10th grade, Berkeley


"The Land"

You are the headlands shaped as sleeping children—
you are the silence I caught in a fisherman's net
and release among the migrant birds
to carry to the other parts of the world.

In the mist,
in the unending waves, you are still.
The gulls eat the stars
and the stars escape to the hair
of the Sequoia trees. Leave the night sky blank
for your immutable sierra
to fill.

In your forests, you have concealed everything
Your name and your eyes
So I imagine mine to be your own.

On your shore I settle
endure wandering men and creatures
because they cannot see me
because there is no difference
between my hands and the cliffs edging the ocean
between my voice and the hiss of eroding rock
between my body and the land.

Yaul Perez-Stable Husni, 10th grade, San Francisco



Stephanie Liaw, 11th grade, Diamond Bay

"The Beach"

marinating beneath the falling sun
we watch the incandescent light
quickly exit from stage right
and then the pale moon’s drunken dance
animates the unveiled night

enveloped in a salty crust
of seahorse tails
and mermaid scales
with knotted hair in long blond braids
we dance among the reckless waves
and watch the fading sky change hues
from red
to lilac

shadows of the looming night
slip in to watch the final act
when sparkling ocean says goodnight
and turns
into a pool of black

Carolina A. Beltran, 10th grade, Santa Barbara



Otters in the Water

“Otters in the Water”
Crystal Perreira, 12th grade, Hollister



The ocean,
wild, rough, and mysterious
strikes a sudden flicker of fear.
Not too strong, but strong enough.
Over time the fear has slowly morphed
into a healthy respect
for the power of the waves,
and for the ferocious creatures
that lurk deep in the darkness.

The thought of leaving it though,
hits hard to the chest.
Without an ocean
so near by,
home would not be home.

The cry of the seagull
frantically chasing the grey sand crab.
The smell of the too-salty air
early in the morning.
The burn of the summer sand,
blistering hot with the mid-day sun.
Without these, I would be lost.

Beverly J. Hollerback, 12th grade, Boulder Creek



5 Oceans (collage with gum wrappers)

“5 Oceans” (collage with gum wrappers)
Juan Velasquez, 12th grade, Hollister


As dusk falls on the beach,
The beacon illuminates the waves
Rolling onto shore.
Softly, the wind murmurs
Quiet thoughts to the sand,
And the painted clouds fade.

Emma Stokes, 10th grade, Los Gatos



Northern Elephant Seal Pup

“Northern Elephant Seal Pup”
Vita Zakhu, 11th grade, Foster City