The Marie Drake Planetarium

Where the stars always shine in Juneau, AK

Astronomy Poetry Contest

April 2011 was Global Astronomy Month and National Poetry month. The Planetarium had an astronomy poetry contest..

Child Category


Starry Night by Juneau Chambley, 4th grade, Auke Bay Elementary School

The stars glow as the moon shines. 
A small gust of wind hits my face at 1mile per hour, whoosh! 
Hold on to the grass so you don't float to the stars! Aliens! Ahhh! 

Image from

Holly Rose, 8th grade, Floyd Dryden Middle School 

Haiku by Austin Gonzales, Floyd Dryden Middle School, 8th grade
Stars planets and rocks
orbit a central point forming
galaxies freely

The Big Bang!
The Big Bang started it all
The Universe keeps on growing
From a time when it once was small
Smaller than an ant, a baseball
Due to the poem I have just told
As I look into the night sky
I happen to see
That many blinking lights
Had shared their lights with me

Thanks go to Leah Heiman, teacher at Floyd Dryden Middle School. 
Her class contributed the most poems.

Other Poetry Contest Entries

Untitled by Ashtin Kenney 
Stars are beautiful
and also blistering hot
that's why they're awesome.

Year 2012 
the beautiful world may end
but bright stars live on.

galaxies are huge 
the universe is bigger 
its fascinating

Stars by Daniel LeBlanc, 8th grade 
Burning Balls of gas
It's called nuclear fusion
Will last a lifetime

Our Earth by Patrick Escorrido, 8th grade, Floyd Dryden Middle School 
Earth is green and blue
Humans live on this planet
Earth has oxygen

Solar System Haiku by Cole Smith, Grade 8

Jupiter, Saturn,
Uranus, Neptune, Pluto,
The outer planets.

Untitled by Haley Ballou, 8th grade


Stars by Jestoni Ramirez - 8th Grade
Nebula Gasses
Losing Hydrogen Atoms
Using Helium

Untitled by Paula Latu, 8th grade

I am covered by water and life
Like ants covering an ant hill
Across me there are little spots on my body that lets life survive
I have a friend next to me
I am like a older friend and a bigger friend to look up to.
Thirty of me would fit between us. My friend is as big as the United States.
Wherever I go my little friend is always there he follows me around all the time.
Little ants on me have explored my friend.
I have a neighbor that they call the Red Planet but we are different in ways 
The neighbor have does not have life like I do. 
My neighbor does not have water.
Before ants on my planet explore my neighbor they will have to be ready for 
non stop storms and the desert like planet.

Earth and Space by Kiko Iona, 8th grade
The big bang started it all,
It made all the planets start to fall,
It started as a family of wonderful planets,
But when it occurred it all went wrong,
We live on Earth,
With a lot of dirt,
There are plants and ants that originally form,
But sometimes they come as a worm,
Read and write for me all night,
Which is hard cause I need some light,
I'm about to fall asleep

Adult Category

Winner in Adult Category

Nina Chordas,Associate Professor of English, University of Alaska Southeast

There's my friend Orion in the sky!
I say "my friend," and yet I know him not - 
He takes his shape in tracing, "dot to dot":
The "dots" are stars, the "pencil" is my eye.

Orion's always hunting in the night:
Across the black expanses, forth he strides;
He wades the clouds as once he waded tides,
His ardor puts the Pleiades to flight.

I sometimes wonder what he hunts up there - 
Is it Diana, she so skilled in hunt?
Or one elusive, absence kindling want,
Forever fleeting to an unknown where?

I can't just see him as a group of stars
By chance arranged, a man to represent:
He nightly stalks the sable firmament,
Till peaceful dawn his questing progress bars

Untitled by Brenda Wright

Spring arrives
Our days expand
our spring light extinguishes stars.

Venus by Abel Orelove
Former Juneau Resident. Currently 5th grade math and science teacher in Illinois

There is a planet named Venus, 
On our path to Mercury, it's between us.
Earth's sister planet, 
Dense atmospheric clouds and granite, 
It's beauty is really quite genius.

NASA image by Ricardo Nunes 

Michael provided this photo of his solar system tattoo.

Pluto by Michael Orelove, Gresham, OR 

He was a planetarium volunteer for ten years

Pluto's no Planet,
Pluto’s no planet some astronomers say
It’s small and it’s icy and so far away
They demoted Pluto and tried hard to ban it
But for me little Pluto will still be a planet.