California Coastal Commission

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2012 Coastal Art & Poetry Contest Honorable Mentions


Looking for Food, by Sofia Lutsuk, 1st Grade, Roseville
Looking for Food

Sofia Lutsuk
1st Grade, Roseville

My Otter

My otter is eating shells,
He holds it in his little hands.
He lies on his back and eats in the water.
I lie on my back and eat in the tub!

Lauren Crabtree
Kindergarten, Laguna Niguel

Scuba Diver, by Kacy Chung, 1st grade, Irvine

Scuba Diver

Kacy Chung
1st grade, Irvine

The Ocean

The sea swirls
In up and down loops
The birds tweet
And fly on the beach

Elena Brem
Kindergarten, Yorba Linda

Three Pelicans, by Johnny Cornejo, 1st grade, Watsonville
Three Pelicans

Johnny Cornejo
1st grade, Watsonville

Jellfish live there.
Fishes love to swim there.
Starfishes like to stick to rocks.
When I go to the beach I have to
Take off my socks.

Cara Constant
Kindergarten, Cupertino

Starfish, by Hemal Kurani, 1st grade, Sunnyvale

Hemal Kurani
1st grade, Sunnyvale

View the 2012 Winners



Sky's Lighthouse, by Skylar Scripter, 3rd grade, Laguna Hills
Sky's Lighthouse

Skylar Scripter
3rd grade, Laguna Hills 

Understanding a Whale

Whale watching the first time
and the connection was strong.
The whales like huge birds in the water
singing songs like a flute,
playing songs of joy.
When I see a whale,
I understand how it feels.
A female and her calf
trying to feed.
The mother distressed,
on and

Maya T.
3rd grade, Fairfax

Color My World (Opal Squid), by Avi Jagdish, 2nd Grade, Lakewood
Color My World (Opal Squid)

Avi Jagdish
2nd Grade, Lakewood

The Big Wave

It was the five of us that day
Didn't know the wave was on its way
I enjoyed playing with my cousins
Kelp on the beach was in the dozens
Then the waves came thrashing
Then the waves were bashing
Oh! the humungous wave was here
We all dashed up to the pier
Past the sand dunes to the car
And the wave didn't come that far!

Naina Gupta
2nd grade, Cupertino

The Pelicans, by Sarah Arim Kong, 3rd grade, Los Angeles
The Pelicans

Sarah Arim Kong
3rd grade, Los Angeles

The Waves

The white cresting of the waves makes me smile.
I like to stand
and watch the waves go in and out,
in and out. The rose peach sun is setting,
it is time to go home.
But I still look at the waves.

Martha Quirie
3rd grade, Fairfax

Flowery Hills, by Guru Balakrishnan, 2nd Grade, Tustin
Flowery Hills

Guru Balakrishnan
2nd Grade, Tustin


A Morning Walk by the Golden Gate Bridge, by Michelle Kim, 5th Grade, Irvine
A Morning Walk by the Golden Gate Bridge

Michelle Kim
5th grade, Irvine

Harrier Hawk at Point Reyes, by Clarissa Wang, 5th grade, Mountain View
Harrier Hawk at Point Reyes

Clarissa Wang
5th grade, Mountain View

La Piedra

La piedra brilla
como el sol y la luna
cuando la veo bajo el mar.
Como los peces nadan,
las ballenas en busca de alimento,
los tiburones, como persigen a los peces,
y como se muevan las algas,
y como los cangrejos persigen a pecitos,
y las conchas del mar se abran.

The Stone

The stone shines
like the sun and the moon
when I see it beneath the sea.
Like the fish swim,
The whales searching for food,
the sharks, how they chase after the fish,
like the seaweed moves,
like the stars hide,
and like the crabs chase little fish,
and the shells of the sea open up.

Julieta Salazar Bautista
5th grade, Fort Bragg

Eel, by Geneva Varga, 4th grade, Redding

Geneva Varga
4th grade, Redding

Garden Hose Nose

I bark, I growl, I'm annoying and dirty
I don't think I'll even live to be thirty
I'm large and I charge
I'm as big as a barge
I'm jealous and possessive
Yes, I'm a bit aggressive
And my nose, oh my nose,
My nose is as long as a garden hose!
I may not be an elegant anemone
But I'll always be me
King elephant of the sea

Remy Rosenberg
6th grade, Sausalito

Brown Pelican, by Annette S. Kim, 5th grade, Los Angeles
Brown Pelican

Annette S. Kim
5th grade, Los Angeles

Porpoises of the Sea

Seven crescent moon porpoises
Leap through the waves,
Colors of a misty lake.
Joyfully they slide into
The depths of the sea
Darting, splashing,
Calling softly to each other
Like children singing in bed.

Tallula Sorst
4th grade, Corte Madera



Family, by Joyce Chen, 8th grade, Rowland Heights

Joyce Chen
8th grade, Rowland Heights


The world disappeared through that cold ocean.
The sounds of the waves slowly rise
The moon and the sun,
At last fall in love,
Mesmerized by the tides.

There once was a wise man who told me
"The ocean could give peace of mind"
So there I kept sitting
Transfixed on the sand.
Mesmerized by the tides.

When the moon shifts away from the sun,
When the stars start to collide,
You'll know where to find me.
I'll always be here.
Mesmerized by the tides.

Anke Larsen Yskamp
7th grade, Monte Rio

Waiting for the Waves, by Amy Fang, 7th grade, Davis
Waiting for the Waves

Amy Fang
7th grade, Davis

Lunch for a Gull

Wings, slicing through air, the figures beside me:
blurred unimportant, feathers competing, traveling
over the vast expanse of yellow beach, looking
for what could be
down amongst the humans.

I was the first to see it;
Far below
the slight movement of a hand,
cradling the slow, relished, morsel.

Unconscious. Silent.
I concentrated, sounded a call and dove,
canceling out what was around me, distilling it
to shades of grey and white.

The calls of the competition echoed across the cliffs
rebounding, endless.

Then came the moment
forged by an age
beak on meat, a tug.


Rex D. Collenette
7th grade, San Geronimo

Wings Upon the Ocean, by Wilson Xu, 9th grade, Woodland
Wings Upon the Ocean

Wilson Xu
9th grade, Woodland


Waves gnaw hungrily at the cliffs
slowly eating them away
sending up glittering drops into the salty air
as they crash relentlessly on the shore
people wait in the water with their brightly colored boards
hoping for a wave large enough to balance them on its nose
as it bucks and races towards the beach
a child plays tag with the water
coming close as the waves recede
then turning to run as it chases after him
demolishing an abandoned castle
leaving it nothing but a pile of wet sand

Sequoia Meadows
8th grade, Fairfax

A Beautiful Creature, by Clara Suh, 8th grade, Foothill Ranch
A Beautiful Creature

Clara Suh
8th grade, Foothill Ranch

Into The Blue

I step off the sun-baked sand
into the swirling blue
The rough sand massages my sore feet
I wade deeper and deeper into the cool depths
The sun basking me in its gold light
A gull cries
I step deeper
Scraping my feet on the jagged rocks
The wind tugs my hair begging me to stay and play
I look at the cloud-free sky
Then into the ocean's gaping mouth of mystery
And jump in.

Audrey Webster
8th grade, San Anselmo

GRADES 10-12

Breaking Free, by Ivy Liao, 10th grade, Pleasanton
Breaking Free
Ivy Liao
10th grade, Pleasanton

Kelp Forest, by Alexa Sharpe, 12th grade, Torrance
Kelp Forest

Alexa Sharpe
12th grade, Torrance

Ode to My Golden State Pacific

Golden State Pacific, this hour I stand
in great wonderment of all you possess.
Man takes fright at the power of your hand.
A dip in your waves, my soul is redressed.

Dark depths, white foam, creatures in your shallows.
Muddy brown after the rains; suspect hue.
Disrespect. We should be introspect. No.
Brothers, cease this poisoning of her blue.

Some winsome days you rest quite passively
yet you may sneak up in stormy terror
smashing, reminding us you are free
of constraints against your mighty furor.

On winter's day I wrap my self in black
against your chilling, chattering embrace.
But later, shirtless, floating on my back,
Summer's soft, temperate waves will spray my face
With freshness. My Golden State Pacific.

Andrew Craddick
12th grade, Trabuco Canyon

Conversation with a Pelican, by Savannah Liu, 10th grade, Foster City
Conversation with a Pelican

Savannah Liu
10th grade, Foster City

California Black Bullhead, by Esmeralda Morales, 12th grade, Los Angeles
California Black Bullhead

Esmeralda Morales
12th grade, Los Angeles

The West Wind Home

With every venture to the east,
A west wind pulls me back.

Soft and sweet, an envelope of sunshine,
Engulfs me and takes me home.

The zephyr drops me lightly,
The destination is the western sea.

Walking toward shelves of rock, my feet descend
Under tiny beads of silk, hand sewed by elves.

Loping along the teasing waters,
Sand crabs tickle my feet.

A setting sun, a melting mandarin orange,
On the water-washed purple horizon.

This is why I didn't resist the wind.
This is California.

Amberlie Evelina Kaiser
10th grade, Moraga

Of Colors, by Melissa Wu, 11th grade, Fremont
Of Colors

Melissa Wu
11th grade, Fremont