The 2008 Poet Laureate is Sarah Meador. Her poem is titled "Commencement."

The years have passed

So quickly.

We bounded into high school

One bright August morning

Four years distant 

Not knowing

What to expect

But expecting everything.

Faces primed for adventure

Ready for the day

Terrified of what was in store,

And sad that the freedom of 


Was over.


Now we pause,

Once more on the ledge

Of change

Feeling so many 


Some new,

Others familiar.

The sad emotions 

Of that beautiful August morning

Multiplied by a thousand,

A million.

Palms sweaty,

Nervous beyond measure.

We are ready.

Our minds have been carefully


Planted with seeds,

And nourished.

But still, there is that fear.


Fear of what is to come

Fear of failure,

Fear of what awaits us as we leap from this platform

Into a vast world.


Don’t be afraid.

Do not doubt future success,

For we have been given

Many gifts.

Gifts of our teachers,

Of our parents,

Of our friends.

Think of all the doors which

Were opened

In the time we have shared.

Our teachers

Showed us the world around us,

Showed us into our own minds.

Our parents

Held our hands,

Guiding us faithfully

Along the way.

Our friends

Opened our hearts,

Taught us about themselves

And about us in the process.


We have learned so much more

Than what can be gathered from

Books alone.

We have analyzed 

The works of Shakespeare,

And through our actions

Conceived our own dramas

And comedies.


We have discovered 

What true love is,

And what it’s not.

We have cried,



And mourned

As one.


And though we leave 

A place noted 

For the moments

We have in common 

Think not of this day

As an ending.

Think not in terms of 

Friends who will leave,

Experiences not had,

Or business

Left unfinished.


Turn towards the journey

Which lies just outside these doors.

The world is out there, 

Ready to enjoy us,

Ready to teach us,

Ready to accept all we offer it.

The question we ask ourselves

[can I do it? Am I ready?]

Are ones that don’t need to be 


Because we already know.

We are prepared.

We have taken the first 

Tentative steps,

And now it is time

To jump.


Our voyage

Is only just beginning.


For the wonder,

The joy,

and the beauty

Every single day.


To love our world,

And each other.

Greet this night 

With an open heart

And open heart

And open eyes,

Ready to live,

Ready to fly.


There is a reason

They call it



-Sarah Meador

Donate to Lamplighter Media Productions
Our Goal