English 10: Writing Portfolio


Catholic Memorial High School



Creative Writing  

Dear Gwyneth Lewis,

Hi, my name is Jeffrey Cambria from Boston Massachusetts. I am a student from Catholic Memorial, a great school for education and activities. After looking through many contemporary British writers, you have caught my eye. I like the idea of your style of writing. Usually most poetry I read is confusing and hard to translate but yours is simple and still delivers a deep message from it. I am aware of that you like to right about rain when you cannot go out because of it which I do sometimes too when I am bored. I read about you and learned that you also speak welsh, your first language, which I find cool because it shows your very educated with no doubt because you went to Harvard, a college to study. I wrote this letter to you hoping you will be interested in coming down to Catholic Memorial in West Roxbury, located at on 235 Baker Street. I would really appreciate it if you stop by and tell my class about your work.

I understand that your first English written title was Parables and Faxes which won the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival Prize. I am also aware that the National Endowment granted you £75,000 for Science Technology and the Arts, to carry out research and to sail to ports that are linked historically to your inhabitants of your native city, Cardiff. This tells me that you are willing to travel across the world to learn more about your heritage, which really intrigues me that you are not a boring writer but a fun, and interesting writer that writes about nature. I inspire your dedication as I do all writers because it takes a lot of work to write a novel because I tried it once and I did not succeed in doing so. I would like you to read to my class about your novels and tell us what inspires you so we can look more into your books.

I read one of your poems, “Child” that I found was quite simple and true. I liked how you rhymed every two lines. This made the poem more fun to read and it also made sense in life because children do get scared of monsters under there bed and it does too stay in their head. “The monsters are not under this childs bed, No, the monsters are in this childs head, The monsters that will never go away, The monsters that are destined to stay”. This example from your poem that I think are significant to what children go through when they go to bed after watching a scary movie or something similar. This I inspire about you because you right non-fiction poems that deal about real life, which is more interesting to read than fiction I think. I look forward to reading more of your poems in the future.

I look forward to your presence at Catholic Memorial this year and would be glad if you came. If you can send the school a reply telling us when you will be open, we can make an arrangement. On behalf of the school, we gladly welcome you to come visit us at your convenience.


Jeffrey Cambria






































“The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo” is a famous musical hall song. Its popularity soared in Scotland & Wales. The song was written and composed by Fred Gilbert in 1892. The amazing singing star Charles Coburn, helped make this song more popular. To this day, this British song stays very well known to many people around the world, because it refers to an actual event that took place at a casino in Monte Carlo. This song best describes a man who beat the system of roulette at the casino in Monte Carlo. The man eventually looses all his money in the end. This song expresses British culture because it describes a very well known popular event in history which affected many people’s lives.

This song was written on the day Joseph Jaggers died. Joseph wasn’t any ordinary man, this man found out a fault in one of the roulette wheels at the casino in Monte Carlo in 1873. Jaggers won an impressive amount of money but went on a two day loosing streak leaving with only 325,000 francs. This gambler probably played little role with this song back in the late eighteen hundreds with his idea to “break the bank”. Jaggers influenced Charles Wells (who this song was based on) to “break the bank” at the casino. This song has an in depth meaning of morality. At first the song describes a man who ends up winning an absurd amount of money from a casino. In the end, instead of putting the money towards a good cause the man spends it all on himself, eventually getting arrested and dieing in poverty.

This musical hall song was the celebration of Charles Wells, a gambler and trickster, who was one of the greatest men who broke the bank at Monte Carlo. Wells was the first famous Gambler to get publicity. When a gambler wins all the chips at a table they were considered in French "Faire Saunter la Banque" which is translated as “Breaking the Bank”. Charles Wells went inside the casino one day with 4000 francs and broke the bank at his table twelve times, winning one million francs playing roulette. Four months later, Charles won another million francs. Later, Charles admitted that it was just a lucky streak and that he didn’t have a system to win, it was because he was a brilliant engineer that made him so successful.

The song, “The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo”, made Charles Wells a celebrity. Charles even persuaded wealthy people to invest in his invention of the fuel-saving device for steam ships. Soon later he was arrested at Le Havre and brought to England, he was found guilty of fraud and served 11 years. Wells died in poverty in Paris in 1926. This song is based on Charles and his unbelievable success in winning at the casino in Monte Carlo. Later on, this song gained extraordinary amount of fame and popularity because of its origins of this tale.






























Language allows humans to communicate with each other to solve problems, and allows our intelligence to grow. English, is the most dominate and one of the most important languages in the world today. Every day, millions of new people over the world are learning English. The English language has the most abundant number of words, each and every one having its importance in human history. The word grey or gray goes way back to the year a700. This word does not humanity progress on earth. Grey represents no reason in life; it represents sadness, sorrow, and depression making it hard to motivate humans to strive for happiness in life. Grey is most commonly known as a color in nature or as a pigment. It is the color between dark and light extremes. Usually when someone describes their life as “grey”, they mean that their life isn’t good. Grey is also the color of ashes which represents mourning. Everything that grey represents is negative in all aspects of its meaning.

In the American Heritage® Dictionary, the word grey refers to a member of the Confederate Army in the Civil War. This also represents depression and violence. In the Marriam-Websters dictionary, the word is defined as lacking cheer or brightness in mood, outlook, style, or flavor. Just like other definitions of this word, it does not have anything to do with happiness, power, goals, or anything positive what so ever. WordNet ® 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University describes the word as a darkened area with overcast; "a dark day"; "a dull sky"; "a gray rainy afternoon"; "gray clouds"; "the sky was leaden and thick.”

The OED describes “grey” with many definitions. First and for most, it describes it as a color between black and white or a mixture of black and white. It also is the stem of many names of animals such as “Grey Bass”, “Grey Bird”, and “Grey Crow”. It is described as the names of minerals such as “Grey copper”, “Grey Cobalt”, “Grey Ore”, and “Grey Oxide”. Represents clothing or any material made for wear. Unburnished, old man, hoarse, fish, or even a confederate soldier is some other uses of the word grey.

In literature, the word grey has been used many times. In 1817, Coleridge: Sibyll. Leaves, “The night is chill, the cloud is grey.” In 1592, Shakespeare: Romeo & Juliet, “Yon grey is not the moorings eye.” This describes the word meaning a sunless light in the mourning or evening twilight. Grey has been used in many articles, newspapers, TV shows, etc. For Example it has been used in the popular TV show “Grey’s Anatomy.” It is also used in the automotive industry. “A grey prediction fuzzy controller (GPFC) was proposed to control an active suspension system and evaluate its control performance.” This is used to help tune the performance of a vehicle which gives the driver more control or handling, suppression of vibrations, and basically and overall better ride.

Overall, today we usually use the word grey as a color or as a mood. Asking around, I have surveyed that everyone that I have interviewed had the same definition. It was meaning, sad, dull, not happy or between black and white or a mixture of them. Most of the descriptions of this word “Grey”, are leaning toward bringing down the progress of humanity. This word does not help language or anything in this matter progress, grey describes sadness, gloominess, sorrow, depression, anger, etc. basically motivating human beings to give up on life.