2014 Poetry Contest Winners

3-5th Grade Results.............................................................................................................

First Place
Where the Flowers Once Grew
by Olivia Yang

I remember where the flowers once grew
Under the hill, nestled in garden rue
Far far away, and tucked out of sight
From the wavering eyes and the revealing light

I remember where the flowers once grew
Where the birds used to sing and the sky was bright blue
The scampering squirrels and the silent brown deer
Who used to graze peacefully, when no one was near

I remember where the flowers once grew
Where the bees used to buzz and the butterflies flew
The swaying green grass and the towering trees
Singing and dancing to the tune of the breeze

I remember where the flowers once grew
In a grassy meadow covered with dew
Nature grew wild and nature grew free
Plants and flowers spread, and so did the trees

I remember where the flowers once grew
Where once a lone child stumbled into
Astray from his path, frightened and alone
He found a new hiding place that he called home

I remember where the flowers once grew
Where children romped and tears were few
Families gathered and picnicked there
To enjoy the bright sunlight and the fresh air

But now these flowers are withered and erased
And dull gray buildings have taken their place
Green strands of grass try to peek through the dirt
And leave me to wonder where the meadow went

No longer do the flowers grow
Nor do the trees sway or the breeze blow
The trees do not sway like they used to do
But I only remember the flowers that once grew

2nd Place
Two Fawns on the Lawn
by Keyan Miao

Two fawns on the lawn
A deep woods beyond
A blue sky full of summer
Butterflies dancing around

Two fawns on the lawn
Creamy dots on the furry brown
Cuddling side by side
Little daisies surround

Two fawns on the lawn
As quiet as dawn
Sleepy like babies
Keeping their heads down

Two fawns on the lawn
On the soft grassy ground
Heaven sent angels
Where peace to be found

Two fawns on the lawn
Did not stay very long
For years to remember
Once two fawns on my lawn

Third Place
Night's Song
by Kiona Arace

Leaves fall gently like little feathers
While the trees dance in the satin like clouds
The wind pushes the waterlilies
Spinning on the moonlit creek

The frog croaks with a plop in the lagoon
That was stained with mud and dragonflies
Cattails simply wave goodbye
As you leave the babbling brook to sit and count the stars

They look as still as the water
In a pattern, in a rhythm
You close your eyes to the sounds around you
And surrender to the night's song.

Honorable Mention
Midnight Moon
by Marie Danos

Some people say that the moon has a face,
Smiling at us with elegance and grace.

When I look at the moon sometimes what I see,
Is my late Papa Joe, smiling at me.

My hands start to sweat and my knees grow weak,
The man in the moon has a tear on his cheek.

One lone tear, that twinkles and shimmers,
Just like the stars that shine all a glimmer.

My moon is a midnight moon and shines just for me,
It is a silvery ship on a navy blue sea.

It is a little white pearl on a sheet of black velvet,
Then at the crack of dawn ...

Going ...

Going ...


People's Choice
by Jenna Mercer

Earth is my home,
It needs to be clean
Just like my room.
Earth is round and big
Everybody can live on it.
I’m never keeping the beautiful
Earth from you.

6-8th Grade Results ............................................................................................................

First Place
by Louise Cummins

When the daffodils have died
and the iris: apparitions,
their scent but a superstition
staining the ambition of a brisk breeze;
When even the daisies have taken on the darker tones of age;
The Earth is trodden, its green forgotten
among the feckless footprints of a former season.

My feet are propelled
among charred hues;
The heaps of leaves
scattered carelessly
by the breeze;
I am determined,
but losing direction-
slowly settling
into Nostalgia’s consolation

Then, there:
tucked between
the brittle browns and burgundies,
crisp and crinkled by Time’s careful alterations;
A single leaf attracts my eye-
A lone maple
modestly reveals colors worthy of a sunset
as an apathetic Poplar leaf flicks away.

I trace the deep purple of its veins,
Note the subtle nibbles of an insect,
Appreciate the smoothness of its skin
And consider, for a moment,
preserving the perfection

But suddenly its mortality bleeds
from the purple veins
staining my fingertips,
and with the crunch of footfall
among the withered leaves,
I toss my treasure
to the tart tongues
of the Autumn breeze.

Second Place
Black Bear
by Journee McMinn

I freeze on the trail as I see you.
You lumber onto the path as though you have no care in the world.
I watch you with your elegant grace until you catch my scent on the wind.
Then I watch stunned as you make the majestic transformation from calm to ferocious.
You growl and roar, but still I cannot move, amazed that you could change so quickly.
Even in this state of anger, you are the most alluring thing I have ever seen.
Then as you come towards me I am finally able to move.
I do not run though; I just wait and when you are close enough for me to feel your breath on
my face, I reach out.
I touch your fur and it feels coarse.
As I run my fingers through your fur, you reel back in anger.
I watch you lift your paws, and I know what is coming.
Yet I do not try to stop you.
Instead I watch you in fascination until out of the corner of my eyes, I see your cubs.
You are protecting your young, and I am happy to die if you are the last thing I see.
Then just as you are about to kill me, a loud blast is heard.
I watch horrified as you fall like a mighty tree and do not move again.
I watch the last breath escape your lungs.
I swear I can hear you asking me why I did not save you.
I scream in agony.

Third Place
Footprints and Memories
by Jing O'Brien

Whispers in the starlit night,
the lone loon crying
over her broken heart,
makes us shiver.
Silence settles,
except for murmurs of the trees
telling us secrets
of ancient things forgotten.
Our feet touch the water,
creating ripples,
disturbing the world.
We sit under a starry sky,
the mountains a blanket
concealing us in a hidden world.
Something moves, we freeze,
creeping slowly to our feet,
just in time to see large eyes,
lighting up darkness,
like lanterns.
The beach sand crunches
under bare feet,
making footprints
and memories.

Honorable Mention
by Sadie Allen

Look up at the sky, the stars have come to dance.
And if you look closer, you’ll see their vast romance.
With Neptune spooning Venus, and Jupiter hugging Mars,
Earth just looks so tiny. just another dot or scar.
The nebulas are singing, they’re putting on a show.
While galaxies twist and twirl, this is the work of Van Gogh.
The constellations are conversing, much to Saturn’s delight.
I look up at the sky and smile, for this is midnight.

People's Choice
Nature in My Backyard
by Annabelle Gmyrek

Sprint swiftly across the yard
The fawn leaps gracefully behind
Staring into my eyes.
Rays of sunlight allow the flashing
of caramel and cocoa colors.
Tails as soft as cotton.
They are so breathtaking
I giggle watching the baby fawn
Chasing the tail of its mother
Oh how graceful.

9-12 Grade Results ..............................................................................................................

First Place
by Mariah Ackary

Here I sit,
A monument
erected in my own honor,


A pillar of pride,
The center of my realm.


Gale and tempest,
Torrent and man,
arrive with hungry eyes again,
awaiting their pound of flesh.


My boundaries recede.
Cliffs of calcite given way
to the cajole of the cataclysm.
The cracking of my carbon bones,
induced by the dry whisper of the wind


My prized exterior
now rests in a riverbed,
in soil.
I am silt,
I am sediment.


As I’m scattered,
I once again feel the newness
of exfoliation,
my virgin skin sunlit.
Interior becomes exterior, and exterior

to dust.

Second Place
Sestina for Someone I Used to Love
by Allison Bradshaw

I think of you when it’s dark out.
The lightning bugs fly by freely.
They tell me you miss me,
and when the moon asks about you,
I have to say
“I’m sorry. I don’t know them anymore.”

That upsets her; she wants to know more.
I tell her I left you out
in the cold one night. You didn’t have any say
in the matter. I wanted my free
dom; I didn’t want to drag you
along, and you would’ve tried to follow me.

The shadows of the trees corner me
and ask why I never do more
than make up excuses for you.
You held me in. I pushed you out.
The trees don’t understand what I mean when I say “free”.
I ache. I don’t know what else to say.

What do you want me to say?
Sometimes the moths pause to ask me
if I’m okay before flitting away. I wish I could be so carefree.
And I wish that I could be more
than okay. But sometimes, I feel lost without
your voice, your touch, you.

The stars whisper about me and you.
They say it’s a tragedy. I say
they shouldn’t say such things out
loud. The stars loom overhead, watching me.
They say they would like to do more
to help us. Like you, they are unwilling to set me free.

I’m never going to be free
if I stay. I’m not coming back to you;
I don’t care if you send lightning bugs anymore.
I don’t want to listen to what the moon has to say.
I don’t have an answer when she asks me
why I only think of you when it’s dark out.

And now, I’m out of things to say,
except, I want nothing more
than for you to be free from me.

Third Place
by Leah Mell

A clear spring moon hung lazily below the tree line as
our sneakered feet crunched through ferns in the dusk.

I glanced over at your face as we walked, half-cast in patterned
shadows from the leaves above, and I thought that you

must be the kind of boy that someone could write love songs about
because your cream skin was striking against the purple hue of the air

and your smile captured some elusive element of the night sky.
Soon, we saw the fire rising from the center of an upcoming clearing,

tongues of flame flicking upwards toward the moon,
and a group of neighborhood kids huddled around the bonfire,

laughing at a joke I hadn’t heard and motioning for us to join them.
We set off at a sprint across the open field.

Someone had brought a bottle of vodka but had forgotten cups,
so we all took shots right out of the bottle and didn’t care

if we looked like inexperienced seventeen year olds when we winced at
the burn of alcohol in our tender throats or coughed it back up

when we swallowed too much at once.
Because that’s what we were--inexperienced seventeen year olds,

teenagers who had set a fire blatantly against city ordinances on a Friday
night and who talked too loudly and too often about trivial things

and who, glowing orange and red in the darkness,
were made immortal.

Honorable Mention
Home is Where the Heart is Torn
by Kacie Galla

I stroll along a dusty road,
quite contrary to our winding wet ones.

Instead of salt and trees,
I breathe the intoxicating scent of crumbling hay,
and livestock.
And for a moment,
I feel as though I remember it,
that intoxicating scent
from another life.

August days burn orange,
heating my face,
feeling like the foreign touch of a distant relative,
alien, but welcome,
so unlike the sparkling yellow light
bouncing off the wake of a skiff.

Golden fields of wheat ripple,
an ocean spreading across the countryside.
It flows into the open skytractors
in place of seiners.

While blood flows thick from hot dry days and shallow hills,
memories burn deep in perpetual rains and jutting peaks.

Home is where the heart is torn.

People's Choice
Through a Child's Eyes
by Erin Justice

As the butterfly soars, the colors of its delicate wings
Glitter onyx and black
The wild rose with its seemingly perilous thorns
Grows up an old wooden arbor
Blades of grass ripple by the licks of the wind
Creating patterns across the field
Ladybugs dance from plant to plant
Their spots blazing black and red
Trees as tall as mountains sway gently
As if the breeze of the wind is their conductor
Bees bumble around the honeysuckle
The flowers dripping with sweet nectar
The beams of the sun radiate down
Casting light throughout the clearing
Sounds of the gurgling brook nearby
Echo all around
For this place is beautiful
Through a child’s eyes

This place is their hiding spot
Where they come to get away
The sounds of nature comfort her
From her pain and support that she lacks
She looks to the open sky
To see the clouds floating above
He looks here to find adventure
Climbing trees and swimming in the brook
For this place is a haven
Through a child’s eyes

Last updated: April 23, 2015

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