Gbari Garrett, 17

Gbari Garrett, from Chesterfield County, Virginia, is Manchester High School’s 2018 senior class poet. Garrett lost both his older brother and father by the time he was seven, which greatly impacted him and made him question what he should do next with his life.

Garrett draws significant strength from his mother’s resilience and her refusal to give up on her only son. He says that the goal of his own writing is to make his readers wonder about situations and opinions that they may have taken for granted. He satirizes human conflict in his poetry and often finds it easiest to deliver a message by juxtaposing two subjects with the goal of making an entire idea easier to understand.

Garrett hopes to do more work in advocating for mental health awareness. As a person who has had challenges with mental health throughout his life, Garrett has noticed that his peers treat him differently, often as though he is less intelligent than he is, or that his opinions are less insightful than theirs. He has challenged his peers multiple times on this subject, to prove them wrong and show that people who struggle with mental health are not intellectually inferior. Garrett notices that it is common for some to be steadfast in their opinions and to refuse to hear a different perspective, particularly when it comes to politics. He believes that if everyone could keep an open mind, it would significantly benefit the world.

Garrett plans to attend college after graduation and hopes to major in Political Science and have a career in public service.


Mercurian Mathematics

by Gbari Garrett


On the rocky surface of Mercury, one can find a lonely, overheated space rock

It sits there, having crashed through the non-existent atmosphere

lifeless and hot, fallen hopelessly out of orbit.


No human will ever set eyes on it,

nor will any other creature that we humans have ever described.


One Mercurian day lasts two Mercurian years,


all of which are plagued with swinging temperatures,

and seasonless,


craters forevermore.


Yet it is certain,

in this infinite path called time,

that events will,



stories that we can,


never know,

circumstances that we,


fail to fathom,

that only valiant space rock will bear witness to.


Tales of war,

of wings,

of the roads of Rome,

gods and power,

disaster and death,

knowledge and love,

still air,

and spent time.