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©2020 by The America Library of Poetry.

2000 Student Poetry Contest

Division Winners

Florida

Choices
by Allison Shaw

Today, a car drove past with the window down
An arm extended, paper cup flying
Soaring, arcing violently, then hitting ground
Another sore upon her face, my planet dying

Tomorrow, toxins choke blackened skies
Suffocate her once blue green white sphere
Oceans heave with oily grime, a river dies
Life cannot breathe, extinction is near

Imagine, another tomorrow, expectation
Endless skies of pristine white and blue
Air so pure it sears your lungs with exultation
Verdant forests team with life, renewed

Imagine, another today, revelation
We all reduce, reuse, recycle, respect
Our earth, our home, we’re her salvation
Our mistakes undone, our choices correct

Today, a car drove past with the window down
Did those within hear their mother’s plea?
In birdsong, windsong, rustling branches
As she whispered, "Take care of me"

 

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Allison Shaw

The Frozen Kiss
by Meghan Falter

 

The crimson hue
Navigates the curves and encompasses the extent
Of her lips
She replaces the lipstick’s coverture
With a single snap
And the young man’s heart sets ablaze
His eyes propose the event
Hers accept
The two draw near
Their arms embrace
And their lips collide

Even in the heat of this passion
The world rests frozen
Time stands still
Nothing else exists

But in the midst of their intoxication
The young girl sighs, dazzled
And the young man’s face and neck are red
But not from his flush heart

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Meghan Falter

I Am Me
by Jessica Moody

I am a pirate, captain of my ship, strong and mighty
I am a bold eagle soaring through the sky, seeking out my prey
I am a bumble bee buzzing my way through a patch of wild flowers lightly
I am many things, I am me

I am a trapeze artist swinging may way through a deep valley of pain
I am an oil well leaking out sadness and misery
I am a teardrop blending with the rain
I am many things, I am me

I am a sunflower tall as a tree, trying and wanting to belong
I am the snow on Christmas day
Cold as can be, with children shivering over me
I am a pilot searching somewhere to land
I am a beautiful butterfly with wings of color
I am many things, I am me

I am a seashell of wonder and curious being awaiting my destiny in the sand
I am the sky, the air, the sense of smell, and the love in ones heart
I am many things, I am me

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Jessica Moody

 

Vanity
by Jason Deal

O’ beauty, thou art like a vile thorn
That doth pierce my heart
Like a poisonous flower
That is appealing to the eye
Evil and deceptive, thou art undetectable
Like masterfully forged art
To suffer at the hands of vanity
‘Tis the blasphemy of all shades
Concealed on the outside the corrosion within
Don’t let the lie devour you like sin

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Jason Deal

 

Georgia

Shining Star
by Rori McKinzie

I wish that I could be a shining star
Glittering, glistening from afar
I wish that I could be a shining star
Floating lightly, but burning brightly
I wish that I could be a shinning star

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Rori McKinzie

 

God, Can You Hear Me
by Candace Saxon

"God, can you hear me?" I ask everyday
"God, are you listening?" I ask as I pray
Until one day I asked again, "God are you there?"
Finally, He spoke to me, but it wasn’t the answer I expected to hear
He told me that I was kind and that I had a task to do
My task was to tell others about Him
And give other people a chance to ask, "God can you hear me?" too
I then realized that God had been listening all the time
He has heard me when I needed help
He had heard me when I was full of joy
He had also heard me when I was in pain
I then realized that I no longer had to ask, "God can you hear me?"

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Candace Saxon

The Shield, the Sword, and the Army
by Rebekah Nesbitt

I have a shield
Everywhere I go
I carry my shield with me
The shield protects me
It gives me strength
I have a sword
In times of strife
My sword is drawn
The sword defends me
It gives me courage
I have an army
When battles arise
I call on my army
The army stands with me
It gives me hope
Faith is my shield
Love is my sword
Friends are my army
These three things
Are all we really need

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Rebekah Nesbitt

 

Just Because of Her
by Marcus Kennedy

Once was I a wanderer on this earth
A common person to society, and average Joe to the world
My smile was often mistaken for a happiness which had no original
The laughter was just a cowardly attempt
To camouflage my depressed state of loneliness
I was immune to peace of the innermost
Cataracts did not I possess, yet blind was love
Unaware was I to the eyes of the "Watchful One"
I didn’t know it yet but I was about to be blessed by this "Peeping Tom"
For you see, I met a young lady by chance
At first, I took our rendezvous for grated
But something about her intrigued me
Needless to say, I fell into the arms of my beloved lady to this very day
Loneliness departed from me
While happiness introduced herself for the very first time
On the contrary, I’ve been withholding an essential secret
From the young lady
In other words, it’s because of her
That only now can I smile and laugh without being incognito
True, she also may be common to society
But she’s no average Joe in my world

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Marcus Kennedy

Alabama

The Funeral
by Reco Bumper

It’s the funeral
Limos ready to take the family all the way
Cars looking like they stretch back all day
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
Pull on up to the burial sight
Look up at the sky and you’ll see the light
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
Everyone’s saying they want to go first
A couple of women screaming, "Honey, call the hearse!"
Cause it’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
There’s plenty of sorrow and plenty of tears
Everyone’s looking back on her wonder years
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
The old man cried for the very first time
Nothing can explain it, not even this rhyme
Cause it’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
Some people came up and lowered the casket
Others had a question, but were afraid to ask it
Cause it’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
Some women jumped in, trying to die
Looking at the sky screaming, "Lord, why?"
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
Night-time came so we went to her house
Nothing stirred, not even a mouse
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
It started getting late, so we went home
Even though surrounded, we felt alone
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
Once we got home we couldn’t sleep
All we could do is sit up and weep
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
Woke up the next morning with two hours of sleep
Next we found out we couldn’t eat
Cause it’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral
We tried so hard but couldn’t move on
She was queen of the world, and now she’s gone
It’s the funeral, yeah, it’s the funeral

 

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Reco Bumper

Mother’s Day Poem
by Amber Montgomery

 

  M – is for memories we have shared 

                           O – is for the outstanding person I see in you            
   T – all the things you have taught me

H – is for the kind heart you have   
                        E – is for everything you have given and shown me
              R – is for the remembrance I will have of you

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Amber Montgomery

The Apple Picker
by Sara Ashley Orr

On a silent morning of the fall
In the waking orchard small
He comes out to pluck from the apple tree
The harvest of summer’s toil for me

The ripe fruit has a reddish hue
Slightly damp with morning’s dew
Each apple bears a leaf and a stem
To which is connected a broad tree limb

Carefully he hand picks each one
Standing on a ladder for him to reach
Then one by one the apples fall to the ground
And hit the dirt with a thud like sound

The apple picker’s clothes are worn
His shirt is scratched, his pants are torn
The hand sewn leather boots have tears
So does the flannel hat he wears

I bend down to gather apples from the ground
The apple picker makes no sound
I say, "Thank you" but no reply is heard
The apple picker disappeared without a word

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Sara Ashley Orr

 

The Only One
by Shondra Giles

He was the only love of my life
He was the only one that I could talk to day or night
He was the only one I thought about
He was the only one I talked about
He was the only one I could see in my dreams
He was the only one I ever opened up to
He was the only one whose ears ever drank
Those three words from my tongue
I Love You

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Shondra Giles

 

North Carolina

You Might Have Loved Me
by Genen Gaines

You might have loved me
If you had known me
If you had only known my mind
If you would have walked
Through my dreams and memories
Who knows what treasures
You might have found
Yes, you might have loved me
If you had known me
If you had only taken the time
You might have loved me

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Genen Gaines

 

A Little Leaf
by Adam Playford

As I sit here
And watch the trees
And ponder the inherent beauty and logic of nature
I try to imagine a little leaf
Picking up a gun and killing a few million other leaves
And yet I cannot
For nature
Knows better
And
Is so much more sensible
Than man

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Adam Playford

Tropical Twilight
by Melissa Stallings

The setting sun made the water look as though
Countless diamonds had been cast upon its surface
The sound of the waves caressing the shoreline
Soothed my restless spirit like a mother’s lullaby
Under my feet, the white Caribbean sand
Radiated warmth from the midday heat
As darkness fell, I cast my dreams upon the wind

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Melissa Stallings

 

Untitled
by Sarah Oettinger

A flower, he did not want to grow at first
But I toiled, I worked hard for its life

A cold hard seedling, flourishing into gorgeous blossom
More beautiful than any, strong because of the love in it

I loved to see its beauty, to bathe in its splendor
Its magnificence invaded my heart and became part of me

I killed it, suddenly, harshly
My previous affection made the wound more potent

Why? I do not know
Scared of its brilliance, perhaps; fear is so powerful

But now without the loveliness
Without that grandeur in my life, my heart is an empty tomb

Could I grow it again? Would it allow me
To work for its life once more? Would it live?

Yes, it will live; I’m scared of it no longer
I will strive for its life; it will grow and become so much more lovely

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Sarah Oettinger

 

South Carolina

Untitled
by Alyssa Marie Vezzetti

His hair is like a sunset in the fields
His eyes are like a Caribbean Sea
I love everything about him
Too bad he isn’t in love with me

His smile is like a dream come true
His voice is like angels singing above
Everything about him is wonderful
Too bad it’s only me that’s in love

I just can’t resist him
I’m crazy about him, it’s true
I wish he could find it in his heart
For him to love me too

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Alyssa Marie Vezzetti

 

Faith
by Shameika Salters

I have faith in little children
I have faith in myself
I have faith in everybody
And anything else
I have faith in the church
I have faith in the Bible
I have faith in Jesus Christ
And all of his disciples
I have faith, I have faith, I have faith
I have faith in my ideas
I have faith in my work
I have faith to pass my fears
I use faith because it works
I have faith, I have faith, I have faith

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Shameika Salters

God, My Mother
by Quinton Young

The Lord took part of me
When He took her soul
Leaving me hurt, lonely, and cold
If I could
I’d take her pain
And just pray that I make it
On that heavenly train
Do you feel
The pain deep down inside for her
Would you take that heavenly ride
She told me she might not live to see me graduate
But couldn’t the Lord just wait
When she was alive
I had the best of joy
When she died
All of that was destroyed
I was sick inside
From head to toe
I didn’t know what to say
Or where to go

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Quinton Young

 

The Price of False Love
by Rebecca Eells

He said that he loved me
He said it was right, as I gave in and said okay that night
Now, I am standing here to say, Daddy, I’m pregnant. Now I have to pay
I am sorry I did it
Disappointment is on your face
You are ashamed, and I’m a disgrace
I wish you would yell, but you only cry
It hurts more than anything, I wish I could die
I will have this baby
It’s the only way to go
I can’t do it by myself, that I do know
I need your help. I am still your little girl
But I no longer shine like your tiny pearl
Daddy, please forgive me
I know it was wrong
But if you don’t, I cannot get along
Don’t take it out on him
It’s just as much my fault, too
I know he will leave me
That’s what he will choose
Daddy, I love you
I know you are hurt, but now, it is time
Please be alert
Please stand by my side and hold my hand
Things are not going the way they had planned
Promise me one thing; you will love this baby
It’s not her fault
She will live…maybe
Tell my baby that I loved her, too
Please don’t be scared to tell her the truth
Here she comes
Now, I have to go
I’m sorry I hurt you, for I love you so

Poem Copyright © 2000 by Rebecca Eells