How Sweet it Is!
Introduction Over the past 12 years, the Stark County District Library has sponsored a poetry contest open to children and teens grades 2—12. The contest grew with entries submitted from students all over Stark County as well as the United States. This year the contest was expanded to include 50 poems written by the adults of Stark County.
We hope you enjoy reading the poetry entered into this, our 13th Annual Poetry Contest at the Stark County District Library.
Table of Contents Notes of Appreciation .................. 2 Award Winners ............................. 3 Poetry .......................................... 4 Index of Entries ............................ 23
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 1
How Sweet it Is!
Notes of Appreciation The Stark County District Library’s Poetry Committee worked hard putting the contest and other poetry events together. We would like to thank the following committee members for all their work:
Julia Shaheen, Main Library
Ron Krumlauf, Main Library
Rebecca Baldwin , Plain Community Branch
Linda Miday, Main Library
Janey Davis, East Canton Branch
Ann Wetmore, Main Library
We would also like to thank the following library employees who helped type the entries that appear in this booklet, as well as the rest of the youth services staff at the Main library who “held down the fort.”
Nicole Yoder, Main Library
Linda Miday, Main Library
Amy Baltzy, Main Library
Debbie Russo, Main Library
Special Thanks To Ron Krumlauf who has produced the great decorations for our poetry events over the
years. This year was no exception! To the Stark County District Library’s Public Information Department Employees. Without the efforts of Linda Dahl, Karen Allen and Dominic Caruso we would not have the wonderful artwork for promotional posters and this booklet. To the library employees who took time to work on preliminary judging of this year’s
entries. By choosing your favorite entries it made it much less cumbersome for the final judges to decide the winners.
Final Judging was done by a committee of community volunteers. We would like to thank them for taking time out of their busy days, for reading the many poems and deciding the winners. Mike DeComo
Vertigo X'ian Xavier
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 2
How Sweet it Is!
Have You Forgotten?
Carla A Cook
How Do You Do
All That We Can Never Measure 13
Merrily We Go ‘Round Again
Landfill of Memories
Two Words I Couldn’t Say
Mary Lynne Quinnan Zahler Hush Andrew Richardson
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How Sweet it Is! Shirley Temple
Two Words I Couldn’t Say
With her eyes that sparkle so bright And her smile that lights up the night There isn’t a doubt That you just cannot pout As Shirley makes everything right!
Broken promise in our photograph I have a photograph of the time My family wore the grateful dresses, suits and splendid hanboks that mixed with vibrant colors and simple lines like confident Koreans. Happy Birthday, Grandpa. Instead of saying it, Smile as we can. Try not to twist the face All our complex conflicts are hidden and only happiness exists. Grandpa's black hanbok makes him bold and passionate. We promise to be together in our photograph every year.
To dance like dear Shirley Temple With steps that aren’t all that simple Inspires us all To take tap in the Fall And also to grin with a dimple!
Even the men big and burly Smirking and sour and surly Are soon at a loss When her hair she does toss Full as it is and so curly!
Today, my mom got a call from Seoul Our absence at his 80th birthday party was noted. Far away, we are wild geese from the past: Some fly move to the United States The sadness of separation and the tear spliced around Our shadow will not be shown in the new photograph My curly hair, My mom's vivid hanbok, My sister's neat suit hide behind the distance. — Sungeun Lim
Her ringlets are so full of charm It is no one she cannot disarm The sad become glad As they know they are had By Shirley who means them no harm!
“My word!” says he when he see her The tall and tame Arthur Treacher Quite soon you can tell That he’s under her spell Playing her good manners teacher!
Of candies and crackers she sings All bouncy and bubbly she springs We love her good cheer As she shows us no fear Its happiness to us she brings!
Her pictures are so full of fun That families can watch them as one Her movies we guess Will not end with a mess As goodness does shine like the sun! — Luisa Kay Reyes
"A Lovely Thought" Things may not have turned out how I wanted. Things may not have worked out as they ought. I always had the best of intentions. You must admit ‑‑ it was a lovely thought.
I guess I've proven I'm not always perfect. I recognize the flaws that I have got. I really didn't mean for this to happen. Don't you agree? It was a lovely thought.
They say that it's the thought that counts when giving; Whether it's the perfect gift or not. So, keep in mind this little piece of wisdom, And please believe it was a lovely thought.
“We learn from our mistakes” is what they tell me, CROCUSES ARE UP IN THE WOOD. So now I put to use what I’ve been taught. I FEEL SO GOOD! I think of you with every waking moment, IT MUST BE SPRING. And I must admit…You are a lovely thought. LET’S SING! — Richard J. Woods ‐‐ Nancy Nicholas
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How Sweet it Is! Living in a Fantasy When I was a little girl, I lived in a Fantasy world of my own. But I looked out and I see life is no fantasy of my own. God made the trees and the animals and the sky so blue, hi died for and you he is true so very true. My little girl she’s just a little girl She lives in a fantasy world of her own. But someday she will se what The Lord has done for me she will no longer live in a fantasy world of her own. God made the trees animals the sky so blue, died for me and you he is so true so very true. So someday you will see what the Lord has done for you and me. We will no longer live in a fantasy of our own. God made the trees animals the sky so blue, died for me and you he is so true so very true. — Noreen Kay Cassidy
How Do You How do you say good‐bye To a child you love so much, A child that is not within your reach For you to hold or touch. How do you say I Love You To a child so far above, When you can never say the words Or show her your love. How do you tell your child I wanted you here with me, But God felt the need to Take you up to heaven with he. How do you tell your child My heart aches for you, But now you belong to God So I must live without you. How do you tell your child I still miss you every day, For I didn’t get the chance To be your mother in any way How do you tell your child Maybe someday we will meet, And my arms will be opened wide For my baby daughter to greet. How do you tell your child God will take care of you, I hope that God will tell you How very much I still love you. — Carla A Cook
MUSE ADDICT She is the most addictive drug, the Muse. Envy those who never hear her, For once you have Her song makes the Sirens’ Raspy and weak; Makes love tepid; Makes drink . . .
Ah, but she’s gone again. Those of us who hear her Can’t even take credit For the soul flights she reveals. — Shannon Waller
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How Sweet it Is! Finding the Light
Go on your way and find your light Go on your way and make your ideas bright Go on your way and search and seek Go on your way and take a peek
Sometimes the world will make you fall Sometimes the road will have some walls Sometimes your shoes will become untied Sometimes you’ll find that people lied
But… Keep going your way to find the light Keep going your way holding onto your dreams so tight Keep going through the bitter cold Keep going through and be so bold
And when your clothes are stained from dirt And when your hear is broken and hurt And when you don’t know which way to turn And when you don’t know why the flames won’t burn
Don’t give up…you’ll find the light Don’t give up…it will be worth the fight Don’t give up…and don’t turn around Don’t give up…because it will all be found — Min Joo Martin
The Christmas Wish If I could grant one wish to you, whatever would it be, that you’ll find peace and happiness and truly you’ll be free.
If I could give one wish to you, whatever would I say, that you would learn to love yourself, each and every day.
If I could give you one wish with all my love of heart, that you’ll find the one meant for you and never will you part.
If I can hand you one wish, whatever it could be, that you find the strength and love from your family.
If I could let you take one wish, here’s what I’d say, may you learn to look at others in a truly loving way.
Exit The rain and I made patterns with a snow‐white lattern The bright‐oh‐so‐white Be it trite or a thunderstorm So clean and outstanding the drops hit my head (It was really the roof they hit, but sensitivity struck early) The beaming were not ready to come out all alone, so I waited by the door by a sign that said EXIT that said exit. — Christine M. Singh
If I could let you see one wish, and let you know by heart, your faith will keep you safe at night and from you never part.
And as I say these words to you, I know down in my heart, although we go our separate ways we’ll never truly part.
My Christmas wish came true today, You’re always in my heart. — Michael Dickson/Frost
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How Sweet it Is! The Front Row As you gaze across the church you see and feel the pain You can hear them crying why as they screaming his name You see his boys coming in with tears in their eyes Even they’re asking why the homie had to die A serious question you feel entitled to answer –that becomes rhetorical It’s this violence yall it’s spreading like a cancer It’s affecting so many causing painful reflections A thought a Mother once loved is now her only con‐ nection How can we continue to see these FRONT ROWS en‐ during this pain And even think about killing for whatever reason we claim After seeing a Father’s tears, as he breaks into pieces All his siblings in a daze from the shock that life ceases My heart goes out which in turn makes me think How I could never bring this agony for a family to drink This pain starts in the FRONT ROW but goes on to in‐ finity 2 generations from now the FAMILY still feel the pain from him missing He has a place in his FAMILY that was taken away GOD says Woe to the man who brought this tragic day You don’t want to be that man to whom GOD says Woe Though HE may forgive you, you still reap what you sow — Gonzalee Jones
“Landfill of Memories” Pieces of my memories fall away Like leaves from a majestic oak. They amass upon the base of my recall Never forgotten, but seldom useful. The rake of time pushes them, piles them, bags them and sets them at the curb to be taken to the landfill of memories. They are sorted, tagged and assigned a bin. Some to be recycled and filed to experience. Some pushed to the side for further review. A large bin labeled “Unpleasant”
One of my Own I wanted to buy a horse, so off to the auction of course. They had Cleveland Bays, appaloosas and grays.
There were horses for all your desires, well‐bred and fancy or common sires. So many geldings, stallions and mares, I was in heaven without any cares.
Under the bright blue sky the auctioneer began to cry. People were betting and raising their paddles, as all the horses were led without any saddles.
A beautiful palomino was sold, In the sun his coat was spun gold. Then brought before my eyes, a horse that filled me with breathless sighs.
I want him I exclaimed! Though he wasn't perfect I explained. He was built kind of small, being only fourteen hands tall.
He was a simple brown. His legs were strong and sound. I joined in the betting, as the sun had started setting.
"Sold!" the auctioneer called out. I anxiously looked all about. "He is mine, he is mine, "I cried!" And I ran to him in perfect stride.
— Nancy Stolarik
Seems unusually over burdened. Memories are never gone, just buried as a raggedy shoe Laid to rest with laces knotted as one. Eternally united but, outlived its use. The heavy equipment of the mind seals their fate. Buried beneath layers of time, experience and emotion Only to be ignited by a scent, a color, a phrase. Confined as they are, yet somehow Polluting the natural waters of my brain. ‐‐ Dan Phillips
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How Sweet it Is! I CAN DANCE QUEEN IRIS DARBY A WONDEFUL WOMAN WITH A BEAUTIFUL NAME, BECAUSE OF HER, MY LIFE WOULD NEVER BE THE SAME. AFRICAN AMERICAN LIVING NEXT DOOR TO A WHITE, IN THE 60’S MANY PEOPLE THOUGHT THIS WAS NOT RIGHT. WITH NO CHILDREN OF HER OWN WE WERE LIKE HER FAMILY. SHE EVEN HAD FRAMED PICTURES OF US ON THE TOP OF HER TV. SHE LOVED MY SISTERS AND I, AS SHE WOULD LOVE HER OWN. SOMETIMES WE ATE DINNER AND SPENT THE NIGHT IN HER HOME. QUEENIE WAS A BEAUTICIAN, SHE DID ALL THE HAIR IN OUR NEIGBORHOOD. A STROKE TOOK AWAY THE USE OF AN ARM, SHE COULD NO LONGER DO HAIR AS SHE SHOULD. EVEN TOUGHNOT FULLY FUNCTIONING SHE CONTINUED TO HEKLP OTHERS. WE ALWAYS FELT LIKE WE HAD AN ADDITIONAL MOTHER.AFTER EATING LUNCH, AS A 5TH GRADER, WE WOULD DANCE TO 45’S ON THE RECORD PLAYER. I LOVED THE MUSIC OF THAT ERS, A GOOD DANCER I WAS NOT, I THOUGHT BY DANCING WITH MY FRIENDS I COULD EASILY BE TAUGHT. MAYBE MY CLASSMATES DID NOT REALIZE HOW MUCH DAMAGE THEY DID. WHEN THEY TEASED ME ABOUT MY DANCING BEING LIKE AN IRISH JIG. I QUICKLY RAN HOME AT THE END OF THE DAY, I WAS VERY UPSET BY THE THINGS THEY HAD TO SAY. THAT DAY, WORKING AS A NURSE, MY MOTHER, I WOULD HAVE TO BE HELPED AND CONSOLED BY ANOTHER. QUEENIE, QUEENIE I YELLED WITH TEARS STREAMING DOWN MY FACE, I AM NEVER RETURNING TO THAT AWFUL PLACE. I”NOW CINDY IT’S ALRIGHT” SHE SAID WITH A GRIN. “WE WILL WORK TOGETHER, I’LL HELP” PLEASE LIFT UP YOUR CHIN.” IMMEDIATELY TO THE RECORD PLAYER SHE FLEW. SHE PUT ON HER OWN 45’S, HER MUSIC WAS GREAT TOO. SHE REACHED HER ONE GOOD HAND DOWN TO THE BAD, AND SHOWED ME HOW TO CLAP OUT THE RHYTM WITH BOTH OF MY HANDS. WE DID THIS EVERY DAY IMMEDIATELY AFTER SCHOOL, QUEENIE WOULD HELP ME TO NOT LOOK LIKE A FOOL! EACH DAY BEFORE FINISHING AND BEFORE WE DEPARTED, HER FAVORITE MUSIC ON THE RECORD PLAYER SHE STARTED. OUR ENDING SONG WAS ALWAYS, SAVE THE LAST DANCE FOR ME. QUEENIE TWIRLING ME WITH HER ONE GOOD ARM IS A FAVORITE MEMORY. BECAUSE QUEENIE HELPED ME CLAP OUT THE BEAT AND THE RHYME, WITH THE MUSIC I CAN REALLY KEEP TIME. I WILL ALWAYS LOVE QUEENIE FOR BEING MY FRIEND, AND I WILL FOREVER BE GRATEFUL TO HER TILL THE END.
OH AND BY THE WAY, I CAN DANCE!! — Cindy Devaul‐Tonges
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How Sweet it Is!
A SISTER'S LOVE THERES A HELL I FEEL INSIDE, AS A LOST CHILD CRIED, I WAS HELPLESS TO SAVE HER LIFE SHE WASNT READY TO BE TAKEN AWAY FROM ME LORD,SHE WASNT READY TO DIE TEAR A HOLE IN THE SHY TONIGHT, LET THE ASHES OF RAIN,PUT OUT THE FIRES OF RAGE INSIDE THIS I WILL FOREVER KNOW IS TRUE SISTER, I WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER YOU FEELS LIKE FOREVER WHEN YOU JUST KEEP ON FALLIN, FEELS LIKE THERES NOTHING LEFT TO HOLD ON TO FEELS LIKE FOREVER WHEN YOU JUST KEEP ON FALLIN A SISTERS LOVE, NEVER GOES AWAY,FLY THROUGH THE SKIES OF YOUR DESTINY A SISTERS LOVE, NEVER GOES AWAY,RESTING IN THE ARMS OF ETERNAL GRACE I WISH I COULD WALK DOWN THE STREETS OF YESTERDAY, NOT A CARE IN THE WORLD,JUST HAPPY YO BE PART OF A FAMILY BLACK CLOUDS ABOVE, AN ONCOMING STORM ARRIVES, IM FIGHTING TO SURVIVE, I MUST CARRY ON HER NAME NOW, AND FIND AN END TO THE HARD TIMES FEELS LIKE FOREVER WHEN YOU JUST KEEP ON FALLIN, FEELS LIKE THERES NOTHING TO HOLD ON TO FEELS LIKE FOREVER WHEN YOU JUST KEEP FALLIN A SISTERS LOVE, NEVER GOES AWAY,FLY THROUGH THE SKIES OF YOUR DESTINY A SISTERS LOVE, NEVER GOES AWAY. RESTING IN THE ARMS OF ETERNAL GRACE AS I LOOK UP AT THE SKY, WATCHING THE CLOUDS PASSING ME BY I SEE AN ANGEL FLY,THERES A FEATHER FALLIN IN MY EYE, THE SEEDS THAT WERE ONCES SOWN,WILL FOREVER GROW, YOUR SPIRIT LIVES ON, INSIDE YOUR CHLIDRENS MINDS, YOU ARE THE BEATING HEART OF THEIR HAPPINESS, CREATOR OF ALL OF THIER DREAMS IN LIFE FEELS LIKE FOREVER WHEN YOU JUST KEEP ON FALLIN, FEELS LIKE THERES NOTHING LEFT TO HOLD ON TO FEELS LIKE FOREVER WHEN YOU JUST KEEP FALLIN A SISTERS LOVE, NEVER GOES AWAY, FLY THROUGH THE SKIES OF YOUR DESTINY A SISTERS LOVE, NEVER GOES AWAY, RESTING IN THE ARMS OF ETERNAL GRACE THERS A HEEL I FEEL INSIDE,AS A LOST CHILD CRIED, I WAS HELPLESS TO SAVE HER LIFE,SHE WASNT READY TO BE TAKEN AWAY FROM ME LORD,SHE WASNT READY TO DIE, TEAR A HOLE IN THE SKY TONIIGHT,LET THE ASHES OF RAIN, PUT OUT THE FIRE OF RAGE INSIDE THIS I WILL FORVEVR KNOW IS TRUE SISTER, I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU. Written & Dedicated to Joy M Williams Etched in Paper & Everlasting Marked PJW Collaboration by Paul J Williams, Jim Oslager, Jack Oslager All Words Lyrics & Music
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How Sweet it Is! A Visit with Kathy Her crystal blue eyes cannot hide All the love of life within Love of family, love of friends Sparkle brightly in them.
They dance and laugh Staring straight into mine With excitement to see me Her eyes brightly shine.
Her eyes always searching As I come to cheer Lovingly plotting how To help me while I’m here.
Each time her eyes greet me I am better than before So I return quite often To look into her eyes once more.
Now cancer has closed her eyes Sparkle extinguished, laughter gone Yet her crystal blue eyes in my memory flash And our special friendship lives on. ‐‐ Judy Lasure
October Moon Oh what a beautiful moon / this October night Shinning full / with its luminous light Fishing pole in hand / and expectations high Catching the moon / through my fishing pole’s eye
Sitting on a rock / by Sandusky Bay The Marblehead Lighthouse/ guiding the way Glimmering water / so smooth and tranquil Catching the moon / through my fishing pole’s eye
Listening to the ripples / gently touching the shore A Train’s whistle / breaking the silence / no more Jumping fish/ flash by and by / casting spirits / high in the sky Only caught the moon/ through my fishing pole’s eye
Falling leaves / rustle down to the ground Readying for winter / with one final sound Leaving memories // never to die Catching the moon/ through my fishing pole’s eye — Paul Herrera
Merrily We Go ‘Round Again I don’t write for children, no. You might laugh, or think it a flaw of mine, but I can’t write what I don’t know. No, I don’t write for children. You can laugh if you want. I pretend now to be innocent, my face childlike, my exterior friendly, and yes most children flock to me like a giant jungle gym, climb over and wrestle me – see me only as one of theirs, giggle and tell me secrets, but I still don’t write for them. You see, no one can comprehend the word “Jaded” like my inner child, who is and was everything at once: mother‐father/therapist‐oracle/housekeeper, thrown headfirst into the complexities of life unprotected; left to drown in adult emotions impossible to name, unable now to remember the simplicity of things such as: “happy bees”, “the color yellow” and “this is a family”. There were even some who considered me a wise child… wise well beyond my years. “See Dick run! This is Jane. Where is Spot?” No, I do not write for children. Not the way you think. Sometimes, I write epitaphs to the children some of us should have, could have been. — Jen Pezzo
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How Sweet it Is! “Footprints in the Snow” On a cold winter day we are ready to go For a walk in the park And to leave some footprints in the snow…
My hands are cold and my steps are slow As we walk along And leave some footprints in the snow…
There is no one else there As the cold winter wind begins to blow I look behind and see our footprints in the snow…
I glance down and smile At my two‐four legged friends walking below As we leave some more footprints in the snow…
So when the warm sun comes out And melts our footprints from the cold snow Remember the three who left them there “Love you more than you’ll ever know”… — Randy D. Logan
Broken but Beautiful You were injured but not unto death Teetering on mortality’s edge, you cling to life Your traumatic past is at times eveident Next to death is stagnation, so you continue to grow As you flourish, your beauty takes precedence All things will eventually reconcile Your defects will never fully disappear But, the beauty that is within will surface and time One day you will realize Even though I’ve been broken, I am still beautiful — Tarrah Burton
The Library The Library, The Library. What a great place to be! So many books! Take a look And you will see Books of many sizes, shapes, and varieties. Open a book And you can go To Africa, London, Paris, France, or Italy Choose your own adventure Plan a trip Research your relatives Unlock the possibilities! The Library, The Library What a great place to be! Open a book Use your imagination! And you can find You can go almost anywhere, anytime! Pretend you are a doctor, a zookeeper, or a mime When you open a book You can be whoever you want to be A lawyer, a farmer, a skydiver You will see! The Library, The Library What a great place to be! Open a book Take a look! The library has many, many books as you can see! ‐‐ Amy Baltzly
In Dreams I fought/ to keep/ her here/ with me, But heart/ and breath/ were lost/ at sea. In dreams/ of mind/ we searched/ but failed, In ends/ no tide/ to shore/ we sailed. — A.J. Bradley
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How Sweet it Is! Let My Body Lie
The Letdown With the grasp of my hand the devil fed on my misery, tricked my mind Confined this pain and heartache Just to call you mine… Save me, save can’t you see I’m drowning?
Let my body lie, Let my body lie; do not pick it up. Let my carcass stay to show that I once stood in your way.
Let it show that before I had fallen, I had stood. I had stood for something, And that I fell for something.
Until I let you go my soul will not Be Free
Let my body lie, defenseless as I was. Staying here as proof that I fought. Staying here as you slaughtered. Maybe not just me, but others. Whatever that reason, we’ve all fallen.
Entangled in chains and all things that bind Your spell has left me enchanted yet Beautifully Haunted I define my beauty and strength yet You compliment me so well Only you Have seen me in my truest form Only you hold the power of my sanity If you could see the beautiful person I could never see in me Breathe Existence is but a glimmer of my reality I seek the light that filled my soul A catalyst to overcome the letdown — Ashley Grace
So let my body lie! One final act of defiance! You obviously did not respect my wishes in life, So respect them in death.
Just let it lie in your way, hindering you one final time. Rebelling in my first new moments as I had done in my last old ones.
And so, Let my body lie not just to show that I have fought, but to show the world that I have died. — Thea Angel
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How Sweet it Is! All That We Can Never Measure Our statistics may be told by numbers: Our weight in pounds, Our height in inches, Our intelligence in points Our status may be told by possessions: The car we drive The home we choose The clothes we purchase Yet our story can never be measured: The weight of grief after the diagnosis The height of joy when greeting a newborn The strength of the wish to make life better The temperature of the focused fire of an athlete The attachment of a nurturing mother to her child The sweetness of lilacs’ fragrance after a harsh winter The circumference of the empty hole left by a tragic loss The yearning for reunion during a long distance separation The sharpness of empathy that turns to rage toward injustice The careful tenderness of the musician crafting a transcendent moment All this and more will forever elude the data‐driven scientists. All this and more will often elude those who judge. All this and more may even elude us. ‐‐ Karen Dhyanchand
Hush Blue rain glistens as it suddenly pours Holy sorrows Spilling onto shining river rocks Listen Quietly the crystal drops splatter to the earth and into the fast‐flowing stream Filling to the brim with warm healing tears ‐Mary Lynne Zahler
Reflections Black birds perched upon a barren branch Silhouetted gainst a silvery sky Warm breeze blowing, briskly through the trees Paints a pleasant picture for my eyes.
Soon the sun will set and shelter they will seek Fighting, friendly for a cozy place to sleep Beaks tucked barely under feathered wings One eye open for emergencies.
Comes the dawn and daylight decorates the sky Finding food now fills the stomach cry Cheerful, chirping echoes in the wind Playful, playing starts the frolicking.
Once again upon that barren branch Black birds perch till daylight slowly ends Night is still and silently they sleep Warm and cozy, only to repeat. — Bessie Vlahos
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How Sweet it Is! What Is Your Story?
A POEM FOR GRANDPA
We love you PaPa—also known as Paw… You taught us always to obey every law.
You can fix anything we tear apart… You say you can fix anything except a broken “heart.”
We love to ride in your Cadillac… But we prefer riding on your back.
You taught us how to say our prayers… And to love everyone and show them we care.
We have shared lots of “Happy Times”… And you told us when we color to stay in the lines.
Everyone has a story to tell or no tell, Just study all behaviors around you. Many emotions are expressed through daily gestures‐‐ Whether it is a hug, a smile, a listening ear or a kind word. What is your story?
The story you tell today They will be your children’s windows to the past tomorrow. Precious goodwill you show to others will teach a stranger‐‐ What will be their story about you?
Understanding others helps you understand yourself, Imagine if we all observed the world around us. We all have our ideals, our visions, our goals‐‐ What will people learn from your story?
Family, careers or running to/from daily routines, At the end of your day What is the most important thing in your life‐‐ What is your story? ‐‐ Norma Link‐Boughman
You always look so neat and clean… And told us never, never to be mean. You love to go on cruises on the sea… Sometime soon will you please take me?
You take us to the park to swing… To climb trees and enjoy everything.
We love you and we have a clue… If our hearts were broken you would Mend them with your magic glue.
Maybe the magic glue is a mistake… You probably would use “Duct Tape.”
Love you… Max and Mary ‐‐ Lillian Steele
Love’s Lore If I am not the one for you The tears you shed should prove to you Our love is true Your love is true God blessed us both the day we met And grew a seed from which is spread Day in day out Our feelings flowed Peace, contentment, flourished bold Confessed our thoughts Our future plans Years ahead in dreams and time If I was not the one for you Then this should prove Our love was true Your love was true — Sherry A Morgan
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How Sweet it Is! ODE TO A LEAF Oh little leaf So new and green, How you grow there So pristine.
Robins nest Up in your cap, Chirping wildly Before they nap.
Full of hope, Full of life, Yet to learn Of stress and strife.
As you thrive In Spring’s warm air, Having not A doubt or care.
The nights are subtle, Warm and balmy. Crickets chirp So soft and calmly.
The days grow short, The nights are chilled. There’s one last call Of the whip‐o‐will.
The gentle rains Will soon begin. They’ll help you flourish And grow within.
Oh little leaf Now orange and red, It’s time to rest Your sleepy head.
More will join you On empty limbs, Some dark green, Some so slim.
A time of reflection, Of youthful hours, Spent amongst Now faded flowers.
It’s summer now, All bright and sunny Flowers bloom, And bees make honey.
Winter winds Replace Fall’s splendor. Your fellow leaves Will soon surrender.
Children laugh And children giggle, As they run, and jump And wiggle.
Hang on to life! Have a ball! Make one last wish Before you fall.
Small resting heads Beneath your girth, Their voices rise With songs of mirth.
Soon snow will flutter, Soft and deep, Fulfill each dream, Before you sleep!
Your shade will comfort, Cool, and shield, Against the sun’s Most tepid yield.
WHERE DO I TURN Not your concern But where do I turn Why must I be th` flower that cannot bloom Strugglin` in a place with very little room My dreams have become my tomb Opportunity sprinted past me You can`t catch smoke,G A loser I don`t wanna be But failure surrounds me I try to keep hopin` Tough when more doors close than open I got what I got What I need is a shot Do I join th` Army and fight for a lie? Don`t think so What about selling others a quick high? Hell no to yeayo Hollered at college,got no reply Spendin` to stay po` Hustlin` chicks to spread some thigh This bro don`t run ho`s I ain`t really sad I DO have pen and pad To tell this story More loss than glory Is th` life of many In this land of plenty As I travel th` fruited plain Told to stay in MY lane Not YOUR concern WHERE I turn ‐‐ Tony Gamblin
— Patricia Culp
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How Sweet it Is! Stepping Across Life’s a gift, we give to ourselves, when we choose to be born.
Live, Laugh, Love
Before we come, we know our fate; the circumstance, into which, we’ll be thrown.
These memories are lost, from spirit to flesh, when we are transformed.
The lessons, we needed to learn in this life, will, hopefully, bring us a dawn.
An awakened state, where we’ll see the slate; there written, is our whole song.
This circle full won, there’ll come a time, when, we step across and go on. ‐‐ Rex Gero
Love Story This is the day we said I do. I vow to love and care for you. With this ring I thee wed, A promise to each other is what we said. In sickness and in health, In poverty or in wealth. Until death do us part. I love you with all my heart. And so I must say That starting this day, I will be faithful and true To my one and only, that's you.
‐‐ Stephanie R. Schank
a.k. a. The Three L’s Living in reality instead of a fantasy world like any normal child would is very hard indeed. I admit the fact that my hard childhood has made me turn to greed. Vividly I remember my childhood with my father. Even though I hated what he did to me; and repressed the memories came back stronger. Losing my normal childhood for one of abuse has hurt me the most. Amazingly I’ve tried to forget the worst part he’d boast. Understand that every one makes mistakes does not excuse what my dad did. Getting my hopes up that he’s not looking for me is a pretty high bid. Hoping that I’ll be able to figure out his mind. Loving those who don’t have anyone has always been my style. Outreaching to the fact that everyone needs your affectionate smile. Very good you’ve become better than me. Even though you’ve become more than there is to be. ‐‐ Kimberly Porter
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 16
How Sweet it Is! AnyCity, USA A noose on the sidewalk A deity’s face in smog A dingy bus stop A weekend rent‐a‐cop Convenience, paper trails Overflowing garbage pails Instant this and that Roadkill on the railroad track Bog eyed people find just a trace Of how it was In consumer waste Castaways Polluted days Deluded ways to numb the pain of acid rain It’s all the same. Pop those pills, end the chills, find some thrills again But don’t dare try to mend your head Cuz more than likely you’ll wind up dead! Modern society kills. Welcome to AnyCity, USA We used to dream, things used to change Once you enter there is no escape!
Drawing Circles My father sleeps on the couch downstairs, the room lit by the din of the tv. He is dying and takes measured breaths, lips pinched in close to make a circle of his mouth. Sometimes late at night after drinking some beers, I smoke one of his cigarettes outside by the street where there is finally no traffic. But I can hear over the tops of trees the unceasing buzz of motors on the highway miles from the house in this neighborhood that used to be still, that used to rest, and it is then that I wish the night would swallow me whole. ‐‐ Larry Catsonis
A neglected library shelf A depleted sense of self Genesha’s eyes Seen in a high You come down after that Apartment is trashed A looted school A pompous list of rules Churches in the hood If he still could I don’t know if He would. The writing on the wall was washed off by regulation. Your heart on your sleeve is a dress code violation. A garbage ridden cemetery lot They’d be so surprised to see how far this world has got. Welcome to AnyCity, USA We used to dream, things used to change Once you enter there is no escape. ‐‐ Christl Dorie
What Should I EAT
You “are what you eat” is what they all say So if I eat pork, will I oink all day?
And if I gobble a hamburger down Will I eat all the grass, and moo all around?
What if I choose to eat fried chicken, would you reckon That I would eat worms, and really start peckin?
So maybe a vegetarian is what I should be, But would I go green, and look like a tree?
Well, what’s left is to eat me some colorful fruit At least I’ll be little, and round, and so cute! — Vicki Hopkins
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 17
How Sweet it Is! love saga Grandpas Guests
blind date in November our saga began
compact red car chariot for an inaugural kiss
Valentine’s Day exchange of first gifts chocolates, a wallet
myriad of dates dinners, movies, walks
plane trip to Vegas exquisite elopement
jobs, houses, cars, relatives problems times two
twenty‐five ensuing Novembers our saga continues — Valentina Ranaldi‐Adams
A flying saucer landed in My Grandpas yard one day. Three aliens came out of it They said they could not stay. They ate some milk and cookies as Grandpa stared at the strange sight. They thanked him for his gracious snack And then resumed their flight. I’m not sure I believe it, (Grandpa is getting quite old). But his neighbors say they saw it too, At least that’s what I’m told. So as I sit and stare each night At the stars so far away, I wonder if those saucer guys Will be back again someday. — T. David Zwick Copyright © by T. David Zwick. All rights reserved
THE HUMMING BIRD AT GRANDPA’S HOUSE ONCE I SAW A HUMMING BIRD IT FASCINATED ME SO MUCH… I KNEW IT WAS SOMETHING I COULD NEVER TOUCH.
IT DRANK THE RED SUGAR WATER AS IT FLAPPED ITS LITTLE WINGS… I LOVED THIS LITTLE BIRD SO MUCH IT MADE MY HEART SING.
WHEN I GOT HOME MY MOTHER SAID...”WATCH THE BUMBLE‐ BEES THEY ARE ALMOST THE SAME.” BUT TO ME THE HUMMING BIRD WAS A GODDESS YOU COULD NEVER TAME.
I HAVE BUMBLE‐BESS, BLUE JAYS AND CARDINALS THAT ARE MY LITTLE CHUMS… BUT I WOULD TRADE ALL OF THEM FOR JUST ONE THAT HUMS. ‐‐ Don Steele
LOVE ME NOW Love me now – not when I’m gone. Don’t send me flowers when I’m dead. Love me now – not when I’m gone. Send me flowers today, instead.
Tell me that you love me. Make me feel good. Give me a hug right now, When you should.
Love me now – not when I’m gone. Today, you have a chance to kiss me. Love me now – not when I’m gone; Because, someday, I think you’ll miss me. — A. Dianne Oliger
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 18
How Sweet it Is! Attack on America September 11, 2001 It had to be by accident, That a plane crashed into a building so tall, Although a thought it could be intentional, That reason; was very small.
We question our Leaders, and ask ‘How?’ This can’t happen in a country so strong, But, on this September day, Something went terribly wrong.
But, again…a flash; as bright as the sun, Brought to the reality of the day, Lives lost, cries for help, And the world begins to pray.
And now they talk of fighting back, Even if more innocent lives are lost, Their anger taking charge, Demanding revenge…at any cost.
Our country was not safe, As death came down from the sky, And this would not be the end, In shock, we wonder…’Why?’
Can’t blame them for their thoughts, Somehow, it may help ease the pain, Retaliation is the only answer, So this tragedy will never happen again.
Surely, there was bravery, As a plane crashed into the ground, Lives lost; but many more saved, Because that target would not be found.
Don’t take an innocent child of God, To pay for the terrorists deeds, Don’t let the evil prevail, Stop the hatred, which evil feeds.
A few terrorists; their hate on display, Believing they died for a cause, Not a care for all the innocent, They abide by no ones laws.
If we blindly take innocent lives, We would be as evil as they, Maybe we should go in prayer, And ask God what He might say.
Firemen, Doctors, and strangers too, Thousands with compassion, love and caring, Many lost their lives as well, Simply because, their help, to be sharing.
This did not make our country weak, A power of strength still flows, With love, caring and support, Our country we’ll continue to grow.
Frantic loved ones make a call, Giving thanks, when an answer heard, Yet, others can only keep trying, Praying, to hear their loved ones words.
Take your sadness and sorrow, Give your Lord, the burden to bear, Gather in your place of worship, Take your heart to Him in prayer.
‐‐ Donna M. Robinson
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 19
How Sweet it Is! My Grandma is an Angel I have a special grandma, whose face I only see in picture books and photographs, but I know that she loves me. If she could, she’d rock me in my favorite chair, real slow. She’d sweetly sing a lullaby while rocking to and fro. You see, my grandma is an angel; she lives with God above. Her spirit’s all around me, so I can feel her love.
I know my grandma is an angel; she’s lucky, you might say, for she walks with God and talks with God…. each and every day!
I have a special grandma, she’s loved me from the start, I have a special place for her, right here inside my heart. ‐‐ Brenda Timberlake
I have a special grandma, whose home is far away. I know my grandma loves me, she hears me when I pray. If she could, she’d knit a special blanket just for me. She’d wrap me up and keep me warm, I’d feel so snuggle‐ly. But, my grandma is an angel; it’s Heaven where she lives. When I wrap my arms around myself, I feel the hug she gives.
I have a special grandma, she can’t walk through the door, but her love is here beside me, I couldn’t sense it more. If she could, she’d take her hands and gently hold my face. She’d kiss my cheeks and then my nose and bless me with God’s Grace. For my grandma is an angel; God gives her special chores. She lets me know in her own way, it’s me that she adores.
I have a special grandma, she can’t call me on the phone, but she speaks to me inside my heart without a dial tone. If she could, she’d read me books and tell me nurs‐ ery rhymes. She’d teach me how to count to ten, we’d have some special times.
Class Reunion We gather to chitchat, exchange family photos An update each other, for how long who knows? We begin a discussion of serious topics. Surgery and illness soon correlate, Politics becomes too hot to handel. Culture and arts seem scarcely to rate___ To good old days the don’t hold a candle! Worse subject of all is the nation’s fate. A wheel of misfortune, the earthly rundle. We go on to recall with viewpoints myopic Old arguments, insults, even comments uncouth. Regressing to teen age we show little growth. With every word we parry and thrust, like venom‐filled snakes poised to strike. Disastrous momentum toward rancorous rage___ Have we not yet come of age? ‐‐ Irene Marquart
A Lover and a Dreamer A lover and a dreamer crossed each other’s paths one day. The lover’s mind was open to what the dreamer had to say. The dreamer’s arms were open to what the lover loved to do. But, the dreamer’s dreams were dreamy and lover’s love was too. ‐‐ Christine J. Costilow
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 20
How Sweet it Is! Green‐Eyed Monster She wears her heart On her sleeve; While she tends To her throne; They all say She's a failure; But I say That is wrong.
People first, judgement last; Moments noticed, moments past; Holds her hands out in grace; Only to place shame on her name.
Her emotions high, Running strong; Says she will just roll along; Speaks her mind, Bites her tongue; People may call her a failure, But they're dead wrong.
Oh my sweet green eyed lady; You stand by oh so sweetly With poise and such serene; Your lasting impression's with me.
It may seem shallow and crass, But I would publish it to the mass; That you are wonderful to me; My gorgeous green ‐ jalousie.
She wears her heart On her sleeve; Emotions first, Decisions last; Done with poise, Sealed with class; And she smiles While she strides;
Keeping her head Way up high.
A failure to who? I feel to her much is due.
Oh my sweet green eyed lady; You stand by oh sweetly With poise and such serene; Your lasting impressions's with me.
It may seem shallow, somewhat crass, But I would publish it to the mass; That you are wonderful to me; My gorgeous green ‐ jalousie.
And when she takes me By the hand, Turns me around and Catches me again; Each time I fall, Her beauty shines enough To catch me and raise me up.
Emotions first, Business last; She goes Nowhere fast; Bad decisions And regret; Somehow yet...
It may seem shallow somewhat crass, But I would publish you to the max; That you are wonderful to me; My gorgeous green ‐ jalousie.
You may never know all you mean to me; My gorgeous green ‐ jalousie. — Mandy Giust
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 21
How Sweet it Is! The White Tiger Somewhere in the woods stalks a beast laid out in white, this area he owns be it day or night. He watches your every move as he closes in for the kill; you fear something's wrong as your senses give you a chill. There is nothing to find, your eyes seem to say, but you know he's out there stalking his prey. You wandered into his lair, and for this you must pay, for him it's not personal; there's just no other way. His skills have been honed over thousands of years, he is cold and unforgiving in spite of your tears. A killing machine like no other around, he can prowl the jungle without making a sound. His ears can hear a whisper; his eyes can see through night, his jaws can crush a victim with unrelenting might. You yell out for help
Have You Forgotten Have you forgotten the dark piano bar, the cloud‐dimmed dusk, the steady drip of rain, and, later, clothing scattered near and far, the warming, clearing skies, the morning star, champagne?
Have you forgotten Niagara's rumbling roar, the crack of calving ice in Hubbard Bay, the gaudy light's long Key West sunset shore, the one last day in Paris just before it's May?
Have you forgotten it all, and all so soon; don’t you recall the phosphorescent sea, the beach, the stars, the driftwood fire, the moon, the wine, the bread, the cheese, that sad, sad tune, and me? — Marcus Bales
but your efforts are in vein, the snow will tell the tale with your blood as its stain. At last you have hope for up ahead you see the way; you head for shelter as fast as you may. You're almost there, a miracle it does seem, your face cracks a smile and your eyes begin to gleam. You arrive at the shelter not a moment too soon for day is turning to night and the sun to the moon. You look up to the heavens to say a thankful prayer, you'll live to see another day if just by a hair. You almost start to laugh as you open the wooden door but the last thing you'll hear is the tiger's mighty roar.
‐‐ Chris Howard Alarm Clock A black beast stalks my placid slumber. Still darkness pierced by green eyes glowing electric, Intensely staring at its motionless prey Hungrily lurking, waiting for its morning meal. Cruelly melting minutes, making time pass, Eagerly advancing the waking hour, The silent laughter torments my peace.
With a sudden shout the silence is shattered – Through heavily clouded eyes I become the hunted Scrambling for sense and security through the haze, I Rush to find the path to end my suffering. Able to tame the beast’s ferocity one more time, The villain recoils with visions of its strike on the mor‐ row, When with weakened strength, I may not be able to conquer The uncertainty that waits beyond the black beast. — Andrew Richardson
Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 22
How Sweet it Is! Page
12 Angel, Thea
Let My Body Lie
22 Bales, Marcus
Have You Forgotten
11 Baltzly, Amy
11 Bradley, Andrew
11 Burton, Tarrah
Broken but Beautiful
5 Cassidy, Noreen K.
Living in a Fantasy
17 Catsonis, Larry
5 Cook, Carla A.
How Do You
20 Costilow, Christine
A Lover and a Dreamer
15 Culp, Patricia
Ode to a Leaf
8 DeVaul‐Tonges, Cindy I Can Dance 13 Dhyanchand, Karen Dickson, Michael/ Frost
All That We Can Never Measure
14 Morgan, Sherry A.
4 Nicholas, Nancy
18 Oliger, A. Dianne
Love Me Now
10 Pezzo, Jen
Merrily We Go 'Round Again
7 Phillips, Dan
Landfill of Memories
16 Porter, Kimberly
Live, Laugh, Love
Quinnan Zahler, Mary Hush Lynne Ranaldi‐Adams, 18 Love Saga Valentina
The Christmas Wish
4 Reyes, Luisa Kay
17 Dorie, christL
22 Richardson, Andrew Alarm Clock
15 Gamblin, Tony
Where Do I Turn
19 Robinson, Donna M.
16 Gero, Rex
21 Giust, Mandy
12 Grace, Ashley
10 Herrera, Paul
17 Hopkins, Vicki
What Should I Eat
22 Howard, Chris
The White Tiger
7 Jones, Gonzalee
The Front Row
10 Lasure, Judy 4 Lim, Sungeun
Attack on America Sept. 11, 2001
16 Schank, Stephanie R. Love Story 6 Singh, Christine M.
18 Steele, Don
The Hummingbird at Grandpa's House
14 Steele, Lillian
A Poem for Grandpa
7 Stolarik, Nancy
One of my Own
A Visit with Kathy
20 Timberlake, Brenda
My Grandma is an Angel
Two words I couldn't say
13 Vlahos, Bessie
5 Waller, Shannon
What Is Your Story 9
Williams, PJ and Oslager, PJ
A Sister's Love
11 Logan, Randy D.
Footprints in the Snow
20 Marquart, Irene
4 Woods, Richard
A Lovely Thought
6 Martin, Min Joo
Finding the Light
18 Zwick, T. David
Thank You to the following sponsors who provided refreshments for our Poetry Café and Open Mic Night. Giant Eagle on Raff Road Fishers Food Heggy’s Stark County District Library’s 2012 Poetry Contest • Page 23
Locations Main Library
Madge Youtz Branch
DeHoff Memorial Branch
East Canton Branch
Perry Sippo Branch
Jackson Township Branch
Plain Community Branch
Lake Community Branch
Sandy Valley Branch
715 Market Avenue N Canton, OH 44702 330.452.0665
2921 Mahoning Road NE Canton, OH 44705 330.452.2618
216 Hartford Avenue SE Canton, OH 44707 330.452.9014
224 N Wood Street East Canton, OH 44730 330.488.1501
5710 12th Street NW Canton, OH 44708 330.477.8482
7487 Fulton Drive NW Massillon, OH 44646 330.833.1010
1955 Market Avenue N Uniontown, OH 44685 330.877.9975
189 25th Street NW Canton, OH 44709 330.456.4356
1803 Schneider Street NE Canton, OH 44721 330.494.3399
9754 Cleveland Avenue SE Magnolia, OH 44643 330.866.3366
Mobile Services 715 Market Avenue N Canton, OH 44702 330.458.2820
2012 Stark County District Library poetry book featuring poems from adults who participated in the 13th Poetry Contest (March 1 - April 30).