2018 Winning Poem


American Millennial

winner of the 2018 Adolphus Lee Poetry Award

by Sierra Whitaker

I’m the American Millennial.

In this world of mine,

reign plastic and metal.


My body stands bare

in a spotlight for onlookers to decide

if it measures up to one man-made

as I compete daily with smartphones

to stay afloat in relationships with friends

and to keep the attention of significant others.


I do romanticize about an American Dream seldomly realized today,

fearing self-destructing from the eloquent tongue of the media and its charades.


Shackled by a heedless president who cares neither about my harrowing load

of college debt or future inability to support my aging parents,

I’m deemed a narcissist.

I’m harmlessly interested

in survival and acceptance in a life I’m unsure of,

while forced to conform within a robotic society where my followers on Twitter

matter more than my DNA.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Structure Of DNA


Siera Whitaker is a junior at City Tech, majoring in Communications and Business Management.  She has also had her writing published in City Tech Writer.  

When asked why she was inspired to write this poem, Sierra had this to say: “As a millennial, I feel it is sometimes unfair to be categorized and stereotyped. I wanted to let people know what it is like being a millennial and how it can feel.”  As for advice to aspiring writers, Siera responds, “Revising is necessary to become a better writer. Take feedback and grow from it. However, stay true to who you are as a writer and the styles you like to write in.”