2013 Poetry Contest We hope you enjoy reading all the poetry entered into this, our
14th Annual Poetry Contest at the Stark County District Library:
A Kaleidoscope of Poetry! We received 50 poems written by the adults of Stark County, Ohio. We would like to thank all of the participants for their hard work!
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. We know it was not an easy task.
Table of Contents Introduction .................................................. 1 Award Winners…………………………………………….3 Poetry…………………………………………………………..4 Index of Entries ............................................. 20
2013 Adult Poetry Contest
2013 Poetry Contest
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Where Once There was None
The Wreck of the St. Marie
The Silent Tongue
A Stranger Named Jade (Oh the Phoenix)
I Never Wear the Suffix
Mary Lynne Zahler
Sacred Summer’s Eve
2013 Adult Poetry Contest Words Unspoken She lay dying in the Hospital, I wondered; “Could she hear me?” Cancer all through her body, “Please don’t leave me.” Words Unspoken He fell and cut his knee, Came running to show me the cut, Does he know I hurt too, To see my child in pain. Words Unspoken. My friend and I had a spat, Over something that made no sense, A simple “I’m sorry” Could mend this broken fence. Words Unspoken Drugs help me cope with life, Old Grandpa, would never understand, He’s lost out there in “Old Age” land, Why waste my time on him. Words Unspoken It was my fault that the accident happened, I should have been more careful, But, I shout and blame the other, Why should I have my insurance raised? Words Unspoken I should have had the report ready, I had plenty of time to do it, An apology was warranted, Made up excuse that would save face. “Words Unspoken” She waited for my call, Told her I’d call soon, Rings gave her curious wonder, Self esteem at its lowest. “Words Unspoken” Girl Scout Cookies for Sale, Bright happy eyes at your door, A variety of choice to make, The door closes, without a sale. “Words Unspoken” How many times have you kept quiet, When a kind word could mean so much, Have you ever wished you made a comment, Instead of leaving your . . . “Words Unspoken” Would the Lord know you truly believe, That it was He who showed you the way, Would He welcome you to Heaven, Or send you away, because of. . . “Words Unspoken”
The Fertile Feline (A True Story)
Two ladies lived close to a park Replete with the songs of a lark The daughter did say “It is such a nice day.” “We should walk before it gets dark.”
Some people were flying a kite As others looked on with delight “Look!” said the Mother “How sweet!” said the Daughter A kitten was well within sight.
While running as fast as she could She jumped over logs made of wood Ever so pretty The grey little kitty Real soon reached the spot where they stood.
“She likes us!” The ladies exclaimed. “She doesn’t appear to be maimed.” The kitten did purr As they petted her fur “We must take her home.” They proclaimed.
“I wonder just what we can do.” “We don’t want the landlord to sue.” The Mother did fret What to do with this pet “Let’s walk while the sky is still blue.”
Quite saddened the daughter agreed. Though longing to give back their deed. They went to the lake Where the geese lay awake And turtles swam up for their feed.
The kitten did not stay behind For these ladies appeared to be kind Wherever they walked To their side she then flocked A home in their hearts she did find.
One evening she started to meow As though she were having a row Out came four kittens The ladies were smitten “We must keep them all.” They did vow.
The End. ‐Luisa Reyes
2013 Poetry Contest Romeo and Juliet The sway of the carriage broke apart their lips; There is a language which expresses so much more But Juliet sought yet another kiss; Than words produce, though spoken by the score. Bringing her hands up‐holding him there; Words shout and spout. Words glibly spew the news. Running her hands through his thick black hair; But it is silence which true friends prefer to use. Problems, riddles, pain, disgrace, thus break them apart; The silent tongue of sight, also of touch. Will their love survive or shatter like a broken heart?; The smile, which in itself, says, oh so much! Will they fight or surrender to thee?; Will their love last or be lost for eternity?; The steady gaze of interlocking eyes. Because of this feud their lives are the cost; Friend speaks to friend. Each realize But now their families do no control their hearts; The momentary union of their separate souls. For there in death their love will be blissful, Hand touches hand. The bell of friendship tolls happy, and serene; In joyous tones. No personality ignores Because their hearts are free to be; The message which tumultuously pours ‐Gabrielle M. Finnegin From heart to heart. It seems absurd! So much is shared without a single word! The magic silence when friend meets friend Doors Speak volumes to the spirit. There’s no end Doors...two doors. To what the meeting eyes convey One I've visited before. Or what the gently interwoven fingers say. One holds dark. One holds light. I choose the one I keep in sight. A new‐found truth! ‐ ‐ the dialect of a friend And only one can I enter through, Speaks silently; and does so without end. as I decide what my thoughts will do. Eye to eye. Hand in hand; an epic shared And once I enter through a door Recalled long after spoken words are bared. it seems the other exists no more. A greater truth! The language of no word. So why do I wait… contemplate… hesitate? The silent tongue through the heart is heard. Will circumstances drag me through —Laura Kier or will I choose the door that's new? "THE CANDLE" Faith and hope, in God I trust, or, worries, troubles, cobwebs, dust. THERE IS A CANDLE IN OUR HOUSE THAT GLOWS BY A DARK FIREPLACE... Hard but simple comes the choice. ITS FLAME DANCES WITH BEAUTY & GRACE... Open my mouth, say with my voice: I believe. MEMORIES OF OUR FRIENDSHIP ARE LIKE THAT CANDLE GLOWING INTO THE NIGHT... Open that door and look back no more... FOR EACH OF US IN SOMEWAY IS A SHINING LIGHT... Amen. ‐Jodi Furno WE LIVE...LAUGH & LOVE WITH EACH DAY THAT PASSES BY... EVEN THOUGH THAT SORROW SOMETIMES MAKES US CRY... Patriot Cold. When the Jihad comes, SO LIVE YOUR LIFE LIKE THAT CANDLE We all stand in awe. Watching. FLICKERING UNTIL ITS LAST BREATH... AND YOU MY DEAR FRIEND WILL BE REMEMBERED Two. The giants are falling, LONG AFTER YOUR DEATH… And chaos returns. Smoke. ‐Randy Logan Smoke. Smoke is all around us, Filling up our noses. Choking. Breathing. Remember to breathe. ‐Kevin Davis
The Silent Tongue
2013 Adult Poetry Contest Living‐in‐a‐Fantasy When I was a little girl I lived in a fantasy world Which I thought would never end. But I looked out and saw Life is no fantasy of my own. God made the trees and the animals, The sky so blue; He died for me and He died for you. God is so true, so very true. My little girl, she’s just a little girl. She lives in a fantasy world of her own. But she looked out and she saw Life is no fantasy of her own. God made the trees and the animals, The sky so blue; He died for me and He died for you. God is so true, so very true. So someday you will see What the Lord has done for me. We will no longer live in a fantasy world of our own. God made the trees and the animals, The sky so blue; He died for me and He died for you. God is so true! So very true! ‐Noreen Kay Cassidy
Found When I found you You had raw edges That stung and cut With rage filled eyes And a silent mouth You were a complication That I couldn’t figure out When you found me You saw bruises up and down A map of what had gone wrong Etched without care It told you everything And nothing all at once ‐Laura Husk
Dove Petals I’ve cried over a thousand tears of cement To take this sorrowful pain from my mind Although it memory is embedded deep within my soul To forget a subblissful second of serene solitude To wit I shall endure forever ‐Michael Dickson
Red Dress Footloose and fancy free I just gotta be me. Playing cards, having good times, Until my end the clock chimes. I’d like one last time on the town Go out and buy a red gown. Don’t worry, I’ve got it all planned By the time you’re singing, I’ll already be in glory land. Ah, what’s that? My angel has come? I’m so glad my sojourn is finally done ‐Susan Bliese
Kitty G Kitty G, in my house he’s just a cat but he knows where It’s at, Kitty G in my kitchen, in his new house, now All he does is chase mouse all over my house with radar, And Klinger, his two pals, forever chasing mouse go Kitty, go Kitty G, Kitty G get that mouse out of my House, go Kitty G, Kitty G where would you be without my husband and me Surely, not having any fun outside no matter how you Try and maybe die, No! Kitty G, don’t break my heart My husband and I would fall apart, not in my house Forever chasing mouse, you would always be free and Not with me poor Kitty G, please stay with me forever In my house, with radar, and klinger, your two pals, We love you Kitty G. ‐Bernadine Ziegler
2013 Poetry Contest To Always be With You
To always be with you, ‘tis but a secret remaining unspoken, one resting within the shadows, A wish, a prayer, a testimony to my beating heart, which lies broken from the pain, But time will be called the avid healer of the meek and the mild; grace has eased my mind, For I find myself enchanted and falling in love with even the air that you breathe, And I am once again reminded of the purity the world has long since forgotten, Happiness abides in your eyes, gentleness in your voice, hope in your arms, But loneliness has captured my soul; distance is a fiend to the kind and merciful, Echoes of despair linger in the darkness, waiting to deafen my slumbering heart at night, I find myself dreaming alone, searching deep within the night for the light of your smile, Awaken me to peaceful bliss, drown my sorrows away, and shatter this fear surrounding me, I have been punished long enough by the anguish of regret; allow me to suffer no more, For I have found my home; it is here with you and I never want to let go of your steadfast hand, Stay by my side, let the light of your love strengthen me, a tender radiance from heaven‘s embrace, Because my only wish is to always be with you, and to hear you say you wish the same from me too. ‐Christopher Woods
Daughter Seventeen. She’s the queen. Who has only seen some of her dreams. I wish for you a castle, an apartment, or a house. I hope for you the Prince Charming, the kind only fairytales bring about. May you choose a life of flowers, ocean breezes to open your windows by, hot sand to warm your toes, and fresh breezes to sooth your nose. May you never cry, except when someone you love dies or when a Little ones born, or at that moment when you realize you are never really alone. So take in the sunshine and feel the rain, skip, run, jump and Play, this is your life, welcome to it. You were today, and the angels knows it. ‐Stacey Holderfield
Mirages I walk down a sunlit path with a clear blue sky above me. My vision is clouded by happiness so I do not see what lies before me: the undulating waves of heat. Between myself and the distant hills the road bends and wavers before my eyes. Under the sweltering sun in an unforgiving sky I allow myself to be deceived by the shimmering hope of things that will never be. ‐Mela Saylor
Omnipotence Here I am in the chasm Between loneliness and solitude Drifting through the lagoon Through muzzled teeth You holler for earthly salvation Sleeping under the waterfall Beyond which there is no reality Hammering on the walls Of our consciousness Continuum of naturality All souls are one being The force within infinity Temperature, density, gravity Giving birth to eternity Life is the creation of itself ‐Christl Dorie
2013 Adult Poetry Contest A Stranger Named Jade (Oh, The Phoenix) Alarm, bomb, calm That’s the order of the fall There are infinite types of pleasure and infinite kinds of pain Though man is too insane to become lost within his shame The sleep of a carbonated tide brings the mannequin to life The most beautiful noting sparks within his body And the stress of cracked melodies is strong upon his sentiency Take a long, slow peak at the mondegreen A thing so sweet and it runs efficiently Any liquid we breathe will ever be withering As the clearest of water rolls, Crashing with the tragic sounds of fantasy Are you free to be another doubt, another sheep rolling down the vineyard? Wake up and learn how to breathe Happily kill me and let the phoenix take me full Engulf me in your newfound breath Breed me a new darkness so I may reap the eyes of death Plead my hand upon this dream A dream that weeps a melting creed Warm and aroused as is the succulent tough of sentiency Jade, my profound father, whom in which I’ve struck with shame My vile tongue is dead again, for which I must be punished As crystal sweat drips off my skin, my vile tongue is dead again Wake from a deep, claustrophobic sleep See the serpent, in which you’ll be And as the terror sets in, I choose not to leave Through the dawn of an ancient grey Your soul be tamed will come to see That in the end of all things, death lies with me ‐Zachary Lee The Day I Met You I was lost looking for something but I didn’t know what until the day I found you, Knowing your love has kept me strong, walking through life, being blocked along the way, knowing your love helped my faith, My life is a winding road with twists and turns but as long as you’re in it I know can do anything, knowing your love keeps me safe, being with you is like coming home to a family, knowing your love is a wonderful thing, I’m so glad that I found someone special to spend my life with, knowing your love has made everything worth while... ‐Kayla Davis
Where Once There Was None She will hide in the wide open, will bathe herself in neon blue. Sleep will never give herself freely, will never offer a chance for early parole. She will sing, open‐mouthed, until there is a chorus behind her where once there was none. Sleep, she will mock you in your weakest minutes, in your humid and timid minutes, in the minutes that crawl thick like a bayou across your sheets. She will not bother with your exhaustion. She has heard it all before. ‐Steve Brightman
2013 Poetry Contest As I Stopped to Thank a Vet As I Stopped to Thank a Vet just the other day, I bowed my head to give thanks for God’s Plan… For keeping my own son in the palm of His hand. Saying good‐bye to you that night so long ago, there returned from the United States Navy…a man. A man who would go…where only the Courageous go, into foreign skies, seas, and scorching deserts of other lands. The Brave were not meant to stay at home; they have Pursuit of Freedom on their minds. And, when Duty calls they answer the phone… that’s why Old Glory still proudly flies My heartfelt ‘thank‐you’ this Veteran’s Day, is for all the times you paid the price for the Freedoms we all hold dear… may I never take them lightly lest they slip away… for all the years of sacrifice you clothed yourself in military gear. I’m Proud for all your 20 years of Toil… and so thankful, after 7 Foreign DETs, you’re back on US Soil. As I Salute and honor you with the Tribute due… Please accept my thanks…for the Red, White, and Blue! ~For Jon~ Love “Ma” ~ One of Your Biggest Fans ‐Peggy Aston
Apathy Apathy leads to an ebony‐ colored abyss, where you miss all the passion you had. Now you're sad, but your heart's given up, and you're down on your luck, and the fire that once burned is dead. Apathy equals a misery you couldn't fight if you tried, so you don't even bother to conjure up strength to get up, and you're weak and you're stuck, having skies of grey serve as your weather forever. But you don't really care. ‐Britney Redpath
God is like a child… He sees what you do, just when you thought His eyes were closed. He hears what you say; just when you thought He’s out of the room. When you praise Him, He does good in return. When you deny Him, He’s heartbroken. We are like children… We do what we wish, no matter who’s looking. We say what we want, when anyone’s around. When we do good, we want praise. When we’re heartbroken, we deny others. ‐Eric McCracken
2013 Adult Poetry Contest The End
Family is forever I came into this earthly life My body tiny and fragile How long…only time can tell. You loved me oh so very much. You were there for me to see That is how a family must be A mother so kind and dear A dad so strong and brave And a grandmother who Always saves the day I beg of you please Don’t cry for me I came to earth to gain a body. And now that my time has come My work on earth is done I wait for you on high On this you must rely That some day soon As you will see We will again be a family. ‐Pam Shafer
How vivid the lines upon her face That soon will carry her from this place Not by shock and not by chance But by the grace of God Heaven may still hold a place for her Though her sins are quite countless in turn Brush them off and look again Then she’s shiny; brand new Fragile and frail just before breaking Catch her now she’s yours for the taking Just take her for all she’s worth Her loyalty shines through Been touched by many yet touched so few Enough for the sake of those she knew Be gentle and fair with her Because she calls for you ‐Rachel Patterson
Am I really part of a Family? Are you kidding me? Am I really a part of a family? A group of folks from all over the globe whose Anthony blood flows through their veins. Blood ranging from the top of their head all the way down to the very tips of their toes? For real? A family? A group of folks, while quite different in some ways, are very similar in others. Similar deep, beautiful brown skin of those long gone from the western shores of that wealthy and majestic continent of Africa. Similar thick, rich, and “stylable” hair which has brought glory, honor, strength, pride, and beauty from the very creation of our father Adam. Similar heritage of royalty in our earthy kingdom on the other side of the Atlantic, of pain and suffering at the hands of like‐skinned Benedict Arnolds and life‐sifting thieves, And of faith in almighty God who has provided us hope, joy, strength, and a victorious perspective through dangers, snares, and toils. So, when I pose the question “Are you kidding me that I am a part of a family?” I am really diggin’ that I don’t have to walk in life along. I am part of a family. Might not be the greatest, nor be the richest, but a great family. And just imagine, I am a part of it! ‐Ellis Anthony
2013 Poetry Contest Purpose If you stumble with a trip it’ll have you falling behind If you prefer your dark side it’ll make it harder to shine Hating is like a crime except your heart is doing the time You say you’re young but doing things that you would do in your prime What’s your purpose? If you stand tall and look up then you can reach for the sky If you work hard and never quit I can say at least that you tried Being yourself feels better than being the bad guy Achieve your goals step up and receive your prize What’s your purpose? To live, to die To sing, to dance To walk, to run To fly, to land Educate your mind gain wisdom and knowledge Use your talents and take them to college And do it!!... …On purpose ‐JaMar Gordon Gardener You lower your head, inhaling my scent. A sigh escapes your lips in a slow smile. You run your fingertips along my ridges, igniting a hunger inside me. I want to be with you. I stretch to open, to bare myself to you. That which held me, you free me from with one small snip. My mortality is imminent now, but I don't care. I'll die, wilting in your presence, feeling your lips on my petals and your breath in my center. The sun makes me grow but it is you who makes me happy. It is you who completes me. Without you I am nothing. You are my gardener, and I am your rose. -Charlene Sphon
Valentine Cards drawing hearts of pink and red on a white paper bag seeing all the bags lined‐up against the classroom wall placing one, small Valentine in each bag eagerly emptying my bag’s treasures upon the floor at home examining and re‐examining each and every card recalling sweet, distant childhood memories ‐Valentina Ranaldi‐Adams
2013 Adult Poetry Contest The lonely red dog He sits on the toy box waiting for the kids. He doesn’t know the kids have grown. I think to myself, as a tear slides down my cheek. I still remember the days when all the toys became alive in the hands of the kids who loved them. So much, and as we played together growling dinosaurs stalking the earth, and our cars won every race. As I sit now alone, it seems like only yesterday the years go by so quick. Racecar drivers and dinosaur fighters, and little princess grow up much too soon. So me and the toys and the lonely red dog will sit and wait patiently for another little hand to touch the toys and bring them to life once more. ‐Rose Mary Sickafoose Forfeiture Crackling autumn voices whisper his name against the barren night as the pearly moonbeams dance in time as the reeds sway to the rhythm of her heart she calls to the angels as she kneels upon freshly turned soil reaching for the past her fingers follow the outline of hardened stone silently sending drops of love and kissing him goodbye as she fades into the afterglow ‐Jacqualine A. Hart
Listen to Your Heart Listen to your heart or it may stop beating Fight for your dreams day and night You can look back but there is no retreating Wonder if your goals are even worth meeting Trapped in a life that’s just not right Listen to your heart or it may stop beating Focus on today, past and future are misleading Lost in a world of hidden fright You can look back but there is no retreating Trust yourself, no more mistreating Alone in your treacherous flight Listen to your heart or it may stop beating Find your true self though the glimpses are fleeting Think not of what can’t but what might You can look back but there is no retreating Hope comes anew with each sunrise’s greeting Healing the torment of the night Listen to your heart or it may stop beating You can look back but there is no retreating ‐Amanda Balough Nothing I do nothing I’m not lazy but I do nothing I don’t dance, I don’t sing I don’t drink, I don’t smoke I don’t tell the truth, I don’t lie I don’t speak, never spoke I do nothing I’m not perfect but I do nothing I don’t fly, I don’t walk I don’t duck, I don’t jump Don’t come out at night but see everyone I can’t really say I do nothing I’ve been all over the globe Never been mad I’m more heated than a stove I just hate being blocked When I come out I see fun I am not a daughter But you can call me your sun ‐Katherine Robinson
2013 Poetry Contest A New Year Thought As one year ends and another begins We know where it started and how it now ends We reflect on our lives for the past 365 And thank our stars that we are still alive Remember those who are gone Cherish those who remain Remember feeling and knowing love Are not one and the same Be not afraid to give and receive Be not afraid to hope and believe Eyes that are open See everything so clear Minds that are open Can accept what they fear Love those that earn it Respect those that return it Be proud of yourself. Be true to your word Never believe everything that you've heard Live your life without regret It's okay to forgive, but never forget! ‐Dan Phillips
I think of you tonight my little one of your soft baby breath rustling across my breast with each creak of the rocker of your tiny fists tight against my chest the slight motion of your head back and forth as you nestle against me that dark tuft of hair always surprises me your features are so fine you curl up, resting your feet so gingerly on my belly as though you really haven’t come yet
I think of you tonight my little one as I watch the moon rising over the field and know that, so far away, that moon is already high in the sky and casting its silvery glow over you and the precious babe snuggled beside you your soft breath mingling with his as you sweetly dream together
The Wreck of the St. Marie Gather round and hear the sound of this a tragic tale A ship at sea the St. Marie that floundered in a gale The ocean raged the wind was gauged at knots, one hundred four And beat the sails in hellish wails 'til they could take no more. The souls aboard prayed to the Lord to save them from the fate of endless sleep in briny deep they knew that did await Some men cried and some men sighed and some laid down to die Some gave up and some gave out and some just said good bye The bulkheads crack, a broken back the waters filled the hold and stole the air from those trapped there 'til blue and icy cold A final breath, the sting of death their bodies blown and tossed To final graves beneath the waves it sank with all hands lost... In days of yore upon a shore the wives and children stood to meet their Dads and loving lads but knew they never would They rest their bones with Davey Jones below the fickle sea Until God's call removes them all from the wreck of the St. Marie ‐Larry Carling
2013 Adult Poetry Contest “Tiffer’s First Day” Tiffer was now five. Although normally makes good decisions, Suddenly wondered if today she would be shy? She hoped not to be left with lesions without reasons. “Kindergarten is not only a place where I learn ‘big‐kid‐stuff‐ is what mom said; I would meet friend there too.” The expressions of these students were Impressions, as if; each had just seen some scary monster. But Tiffer didn’t want anything to ruin her day and decided to make the first move; she approached “Barry Bonster.” ”Hi, I’m Tiff!” But this boy, with curly hair, responded by saying – “I don’t want to play that game.” “He apparently is not tame.” Tiffer thought. She then, went on‐over to the next kid. Hi, I’m Tiff!” And soon noticed this, red‐haired, girl was missing a tooth. While oddly behaved; as if, someone was going to hurt her. This girl jumped beneath! Where she remained; under a table, hoping the day would be just like any other. “Are these students all strange?” Tiffer wondered. ”And do they believe others have mange?” …she continued to ponder. Surprisingly enough; the students kindly are affected, after hearing the teacher’s stories. Her voice carries across the room; as if, she is leading a choir. And no longer was any of it scary. The time quickly changes to seconds from an hour. Each student is asked to stand and say their name. “Barry Bonster” and the “red‐haired girl” suddenly seem sure of themselves. They each say who they are, while no longer appearing of any soul to be vain. Indeed; Tiffer knew all along, that this day would be fine. ‐Denise Blakney Beringer
2013 Poetry Contest Everyone should reread a classic… It must have been assigned the great Jane Eyre, but I can’t remember reading it; at least not with my soul attached. I’m sure had I but skimmed the pages of this dusty work of art I could not have conceived of its brilliance. I would have disliked her very much this 19th century ‘heroine’ as a prude, a shrewd, and all things cowardly. But now, looking back with the temperance of time and experience to frame my perspective, I do believe her to be in capable of failure. For had she put away the great Rochester like a cloak with no more use, I would have applauded her for stepping into spring. Yet it is because she dared to start anew and permitted him to come along that she squelched an image of weakness with the courage to forgive. Which is why everyone should reread a classic. ‐Jaimie Brown Putty in His Hands The minute the lover of my soul touched me I became putty in His hands. He stirred dealings so deep within me I could not understand. His touch was like nothing I had ever felt And from the crown of my head to the soles of my feet I began to melt. He took me in His arms and held me close and near these are the words He whispered gently in my ear I am the lover of your soul your life I’m about to make shape and remold He pushed me, pulled me, stretched me in every direction When I asked Him why he said, “I’m shaping you to perfection.” I asked Him “but what is it you desire?” It was then He stripped me bare and put me in the fire The fire was so hot in agony I began to cry “if you don’t stop this pain Lord, surely I will die.” He said “This trial by fire only comes to make you stronger” “Trust me please, hold on a little longer” Once He removed me from the fire and flames I realized He had made me over again He made me into someone who no longer desired to live in sin He truly was the lover of my soul my life He did make shape and remold Now why He did this to me I still don’t understand I only know one touch from Him and I was putty in His hands. ‐Orpah Moore
Sacred Summer's Eve Hummingbirds dance like miniature gypsies in a rainbow rhapsody over the still‐blooming lilac lilies And Venus rocks in the garden as the insects sing their vibrant songs The clover‐edged lawn unfolds into the emerald meadow randomly sprinkled with bright‐colored gems of wildflowers And the spirited dashing horses fly off into the fast‐approaching dusk As sunset closes in On the hot humid night, previously unknown dreams begin to unravel... deep from within... ‐ Mary Lynne Zahler
2013 Adult Poetry Contest One Plea Hello world, we are the forgotten deemed unimportant, And me, I’m the one that walks into the store with the ragged clothes giving off breath catching fumes. Those are the fumes of the merciless journey I have had to endure. We are the ones that stand on the corners, hoping that your passing vehicle would stop and look beyond the sign, I know it says I am looking for money to feed myself and my family, And believe me I also know there are those that take advantage of the slightest gesture of openhandedness, but me; I just need you to care about my story, I still wonder why my family stopped caring. I am the mom you see waiting at the bus stop with my child sleeping in her stroller while trying to make sure my other little doesn’t run in the street. When you look at me at first glance you think, now here is a girl who is going nowhere with her life with the mistakes she’s made, one she is carelessly looking after and the other sleeping in that old beat up stroller. Well to be honest the first your right was a mistake, It was an excuseless journey to becoming a woman, or so my mother would say. And the second was like a thief in the night that stole what was left of my identity. I am 12 years old and I am left at school sometimes until its dark, My parents say that I have to get nothing less than A pluses And I’ve got to be the star athlete, the star of the musical and the star of the Honor Society. Only shining stars get noticed. I’m shy. I am not outspoken like the others girls in my class, The teachers think I’m just anti social and I don’t care, But truth is I am afraid to let out that confident and really talented girl I look at in the mirror every day. I am afraid because the school bullies dare me to be heard. I dream nightly of their taunts “Who wants to listen to some who wears the same clothes every day?” We come not to accuse, seeking not empathy from you, nor do we excuse any fault that contributed to our state of being. Sincerely our knees become ash as we plea that you would be individuals clothed with unconditional love, generosity and humility for hearts of every color and position. It is not possession or status that makes us somebody, But unconditional love covers a multitude. ‐Tamara Williams
2013 Poetry Contest I NEVER WEAR THE SUFFIX I cut off my roman numerals. You never tailored me to begin a wardrobe of my own. I’m going to be you for Halloween. I ate your bones, but they will not digest. I cut off your tattoos. Every chinese dragon, every faded‐green spider, every memory of Vietnam trapped on your chest, mother’s name sub‐ducted in camo‐leaf fox holes. The L‐O‐V‐E on the knuckles stretched to its sanguine meaning. I drank your cologne to see what absence tastes like. You never went to Vietnam. There are no Charlies in the palm trees of Florida, in the siding on the houses of Ohio, in the land lines of Kentucky, or in the hammocks of your eye‐bags. I swallowed your guns, now I can’t reach their triggers. The fourth layer of skin signs signatures the same. I live comfortably knowing it sheds off at this age. I starved myself to never fit your sleeves. ‐Tony Vickers
The Lighthouse The voluted stairs are the harbinger of doom, and the flagship of boats in the fledgling seas, only bring more gloom. ‐Emily Carey
The Cursor’s Curse The cursor is taunting me … Over and over it blinks, off and on, Off and on, “you’re not worthy, you don’t belong. You’re not a Real Writer and you never will be. You’re just a hack, an imposter, a phony, a fake, a fraud.” I think maybe it’s cursed me… I sit with my laptop, watching it blink its derisive siren’s song. It tempts me to write the words that refuse to come, to give birth to my little word babies and send them flying out into the world like a mother robin kicking her young from the nest. Sometimes I think it’s laughing at me… Each blink a chuckle, “Ha (Blink), Ha (Blink). Ha ha ha …………………. and on and on it laughs maniacally, but oh so eerily silently. I guess sound would kill the effect. Its very silence conveys its contempt so much more effectively. But I know the secret to break the curse. I know the magic spell, so ancient and so new. Different for each cursee, what works for me won’t work for you. So simple really, yet so daunting too. It exhilarates and terrifies me every time. Simply type a word, any word will do. Keep adding more and more. “Poof” the curse is broken. You write the words, so a Writer you are, a Knight of the Realm of Words in the Kingdom of Imagination. At least until the next curse is cast… And that damn cursor is taunting me again. ‐Lavonne Buckle
2013 Adult Poetry Contest Words are… Words are… Absolutely accurate and Awesome Or Apologetic, Adolescent abomination Words can be a Babbling brook, a Baffling book, the Blink of an eyelash or a Bittersweet goodbye a Celebratory song, a Cranky curmudgeon They can be a Deliberate Dedication to a cause, a Dainty Daisy, a Drizzle of rain, a Declaration of despair Words are Elegant Efficient Everlasting WORDS ARE EVERYTHING They can be Fanciful, Graceful or a Grateful goodby They are a Horizon at sunset, Hues of crimson and apricot or a simple Hug Words can be Jubilation or Jokes Kind and comforting or Killingly corrosive They can be a Lazy river or Lies, Limp and lifeless a Magnificent mountain a Noon nap Words can be Original or Oppressive Pretend or Precise,
a Prayerful plea They can be Quiet as a summer breeze Righteous or Rare Simply soothing, Strong and silent or a Sweet and soulful Spiritual journey, A Summertime sky or a Soulful soliloquy Words can be Terrible twos, Teenage trash talk, Thunderous storm or Twinkling stars at twilight Utterance of understanding Words can be a Violent, viscious viper or a Velvety midnight sky Wayfaring travelers through a Wintery windowpane or Wild and wonderful ocean waves WORDS ARE X‐CITING WORDS ARE YOUR BEST FRIENDS And most importantly WORDS ARE ZEE BEST ZING IN ZEE WHOLE WORLD! ‐Gwen Bushey
Creativity We appreciate logic And reason in this World We worship many If only we could Appreciate creativity As much We live in the age Of technology We live in the age of moving backwards Not forward We live in dark Times We really need some Light in this world Its easy to see in The spring and summer But you stumble in The winter. ‐Mary Kathleen Zeitz
2013 Poetry Contest Daddy Daddy, why did you leave me? I would really like to know, I wasn’t even born yet I had just begun to grow. Soon I was a baby and boy was Mommy glad, Then one day I wondered why I had a Mom but not a Dad. Did I do something wrong to make you go away, Mommy says it’s not my fault It just came out that way. You never came to see if I was doing well, When I was sick you never knew You weren’t around to tell. You weren’t there to chase away the fears inside my head, Mommy was the one who chased The monsters from under my bed. Daddy, I try to be good but sometimes I’m bad, But my Mommy still loves me Even when I make her mad. Daddy, I wish you could love me and claim me as your boy, But Mommy says not to worry I’ll always be her pride and joy. Carla Ann Cook Shadow I see it in the dark of night Standing by a street light. I see it in the morning hours When the sky is clear, blue, bright.
At times it seems to follow me At other times it leads. I wish that it would talk with me To tell me what it needs.
I wonder if it’s all alone Or does it have a friend. And will it always be with me Until my journey’s end.
I think when we are in a crowd It sees its ilk and kin. But only when there’s light above Be it quiet or noisy din.
I’d like to think it finds someone In that crowd of its kin. And they drift away hand in hand But comes back when I’m out again. ‐Judith Mussulin
CHASE SEEN The mouse said “YIPE!” As it scampered down the hall. The cat said “YEOW!” As it slid into the wall. The dog said “YIP!” As it ran into the cat. And I just stood and stared At such a sight as that. The mouse escaped As it went into it’s hole. The cat got fed As it ate out of it’s bowl. The dog quit the chase As it heard it’s master call. And I still can’t believe I really saw it all. ‐T. David Zwick
Look Past Your Dreams Look past your dreams And see the beauty That is reality Smell the fresh cut grass And watch As the wind gently cresses The wings of the butterfly. Feel the rough Ugly bark of the oak tree, And know Its majestic strength Is its inner Beauty. Can we look past Our concrete mask, Our asphalt coated hearts, To find the beauty That lies Just beyond Our Polluted eyes. ‐John Hiles
Anthony, Ellis Aston, Peggy Balough, Amanda Blakney‐Beringer, Denise Bliese, Susan Brightman, Steve Brown, Jaimie Buckle, Lavonne Bushey, Gwen Carey, Emily Carling, Larry Cassidy, Noreen Kay Cook, Carla Ann Davis, Kayla Davis, Kevin Dickson, Michael Dorie, Christl Finnegin, Gabrielle Furno, Jodi Gordon, JaMar Hart, Jacqualine A. Hiles, John Holderfield, Stacey Husk, Laura Kier, Laura Lee, Zachary
2013 Adult Poetry Contest
Logan, Randy McCracken, Eric Michelson, Andi Moore, Orpah Mussulin, Judith Patterson, Rachel Phillips, Dan Ranaldi‐Adams, Valentina Redpath, Britney Reyes, Luisa Robinson, Donna Robinson, Katherine Saylor, Mela Shafer, Pam Sickafoose, Rose Mary Sphon, Charlene Vickers, Tony Williams, Tamara Woods, Christopher Zahler, Mary Lynne Zeitz, Mary Kathleen Ziegler, Bernadine Zwick, T. David
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2013 Poetry Contest