Morning at the Mount

I wrote this essay to create a scene that I thought would fit into the appropriate time of the school.  I wrote this essay to create a story about MSJ students during the 1940’s and what their life was like back then.  In this essay I want the readers to understand what it might be like at Mount Saint Joseph during the 1940’s.

“Hey Alex,” called Ben running up to his best friend. “Do you want to go to the mall with me after school today? I need to buy a new leather jacket with the money my neighbor gave me for fixing her car.”

It was an unseasonably cold September day at Mount Saint Joseph, and students were slowly walking down the cobblestone path to their first classes of the day.  The leaves in the trees around them were fading turning crimson. 

“I don’t think I can,” Alex replied.  “I have a meeting with the student council.  Don’t you have detention anyway?”

Mount students on campus in 1949. Photo courtesy of the Mount Tower 1950.

“Oh right, I forgot,” Ben replied sullenly.  

“How did you get detention,” Alex asks.

“I was in class having a simple debate with my history teacher about why Thomas E. Dewey should be elected president instead of Truman,” Ben said, “and the old geezer decided to give me detention for arguing.”

The boys walked in silence down the cobblestone path, listening to the chatter of other students around them.  The icy wind blew against the students like a piercing dagger.  Ben, stuffing his hands deep in his pockets, wished he was at home in his bed away from the frigid September weather and listening to the music of his favorite musician, Louis Armstrong, on the record player he had recently bought.  His thoughts were interrupted by Brother Bartholomew, the headmaster of the school.  He was a strict, but kind man, who dedicated his life to serving God and making the boys of the school better men.

“Belts tucked in, ties straight.  It’s another day of school.  Let’s make the most of it,” barked the headmaster. “And remember, devote this day to making the Mount a better place.”

The boys trudged past the headmaster in silence, watching their breath flow from their mouths like smoke billowing from a chimney. Pushing his sleek blonde hair out of his freckled face, Ben remarked, “I can’t wait to get inside the building.  It is so cold.”

“I know,” Alex replied, “Just imagine what it will be like a month from now. 

The two boys finally approached the doors of the buildings.  For one, it was a gateway to learning, but for the other, seven long hours of misery.

“See you at lunch,” Alex said to Ben.

“See ya then,” Ben replied, heading towards the other building. “If I make it that long.”

An Unforgettable Moment  

I wrote this essay during English class with Mr. Peightel because I wanted to write a short story about two young boys and their adventure up the mountain. I wrote this essay because I wanted to create an interesting story with as much detail as I could. I hope the reader will take away from the story that description can make your essay so much better.

Photo by Tatiana Syrikova on

“ Hurry up,” Peter said, turning around to see his little brother Timmy trudging along the path.  “ We are almost at the top. 

 “ I’m tired,” Timmy replied while trying his best to avoid the roots and rocks under his feet.  “ Can we just take a five-minute break?”  

Reluctantly, Peter walked back down to his brother, setting down his long stick he had found while ascending the mountain.  Then he sat down next to his brother on a fallen tree, wiping the mud off his legs, and listening to the birds in the air and the scampering of small animals, like squirrels, scurrying from tree to tree trying to find enough food before winter.

Timmy sat there in silence, watching a soaring eagle flying down to her nest with what looked like food for her children.

“Peter, what type of bird is that?” Timmy asks, not taking his eyes off the bird.

“I think it is a bald eagle,” Peter replies.

“Do bald eagles eat humans?” Timmy implores, looking up at his older brother.

Smiling, Peter responds, “No Timmy, they only eat smaller animals like mice and other smaller birds.”

“It’s been five minutes, let’s get going, we are almost there we just need to make one last turn on the path.  Trust me, the view you are about to see will be worth the tedious climb up the mountain.”

Guzzling down the last of his precious water from his canteen and picking up his walking stick, Timmy slowly gets up and starts walking next to his older brother, determined to make it to the top.

Photo by @rrinna on

After five minutes of the rocky and steep path, They made it to the top.  Looking around, Timmy sees a massive boulder that reminded him of the one from his favorite show, The Lion King.  Once near the edge of the rock, he looked down, seeing at the trees and rivers below and off in the distance the setting sun.  

“Now are you glad you kept hiking to the top, instead of turning back around and walking back down to the bottom?” Peter says.

“You were right, Timmy gasped. This is the best view I have ever seen in my life.”

Putting his arm around his brother, Timmy gazes into the sunset, enjoying these precious moments of silence, trying to implant this moment in his head forever.

Jack Bonham is a member of Mr. Dan Peightel’s Honors Freshman English class

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