From Pawn to Power by Matthew Anderson
(Age 18, Ryan Academy High School, Norfolk, Virginia)
I am a pawn in the board of life. My power is limited. A lot of times people see me as the weakest piece, but what they don’t know is someday I will be the strongest. Pieces, known as my family and friends, fall around me but the only thing I can do is move forward and focus on getting to the end and reach my full potential.
But like a Raisin in the sun, my dream was deferred. My King had fallen. It felt like the game was over. It wasn’t though. A person who I thought was my opponent told me when you are out of moves you may lose, but you don’t give up. So I reset the game and everything seemed to be going better, but things were getting worse, consistently in confrontations with my Queen, making moves without thinking, trying to run and get to a goal I could not see anymore with all the different opponents in my way.
Yet still, I am moving, trying to take the pieces that I can’t take. I become boxed in by the King and Queen and at this point all I can see is another defeat.
Then, something finally happens to me. I have been holding on to the fact that I lost my King before and I don’t want to lose no one else, so I try never to get close. At this time I decide to let it go. I realize it wasn’t my fault he fell. I finally come back to the reality of the game and I realize I was never in danger. Finally I move smarter, wiser. I make it to the other side of the board. Now I have all the power, but the game is not over yet.
My eyes open. I am drenched in sweat and al you can hear is the pulse of the crowd. I look around and I see millions of people wearing 76ers jerseys. About half of them have “Anderson” on the back. The clock winds down “10,9,8,7…” I run up. I get the ball at the three point line. I look at the scoreboard 102-104. “4,3…” I shoot. The ball is in the air, but I turn around, not worried if I win or lose because in my head all I could think of was the simple fact that I have my life in checkmate even in my dreams.