Poetry Contest

The 2023 Poetry Contest ended April 30, 2023. Check back here soon to see this year’s winners!

2023 Winners

Youth Winner:

Mountains and Deserts by Cole Wise

The Mountains are so full of snow,

But not the deserts down below.

The Mountains are so fresh and clear,

The deserts down below are drear.

Teen Winner:

Beast of the Rockies by Chase Brain

These beautiful giants

Stand still in my presence

Their gentle hands pick me

up when I have fallen

Though they are as silent as

a mouse, they are the guardians

of the night

In the morning and in the evening

These beasts glow red with

anger, for we have used

them and given nothing back

Though these monsters of rock

are angry, they are full

of kindness

These titans of the earth

provided so much for us

So for now let’s just enjoy their


Adult Winner

XENA (in memory of lost pets, and so much more) by Lisa Gurian

Oh those survivors, bold, with broken hearts!

Who try again, because they must

Who raise themselves out of the dust

Who look dread in the face, unbowed,

Though previously they have vowed

Never to put themselves in such

A place

Where tragedy, loss, grief can gain

A foot hold to unleash such pain.

Survivors of things we can not speak,

Though dreams may haunt as in our sleep

Of loves so dear, departed soon

Of witnesses cruelties,

Cause us to weep:

Yet we return to stare it down

Hold forth.

With strength, we are renowned.

To gather truth, and work for change.

Survivors who refuse to drown.

Our tears salty, silent or loud.

Warriors of the gallant fight

Challenge evil – bring to light

With broken hearts

But our love strong

We dig graves

And carry on

2022 Winners

Youth Winner:

That September Day by Serenity Crofford

Coffee brewing, families rushing to get out the door, traffic backed up, horns honking,

time clocks clicking, business meetings starting, it was a normal September day.

Screaming, panic, sirens, phones ringing, tears falling, hearts pounding, people running

Franticly.  The news unfolding on everyone’s t.v. and radio.

The air so thick with debris, people gasping to breathe, fire personnel running right into the

unknown. Police radios going off EVERYONE AVAILABLE TO RESPOND! Military

from every branch on stand by.  National guard deployed.

What just happened on American soil?  Who attacked our great nation? What is next?

Where do we hide? Do we need to run? Is this the end of what we have all known and


The air has cleared, the debris is cleaned up.  The memorial services have all been held.

The churches have been filled with people searching for peace and comfort. Deep holes left

in the hearts of the American people.

The tears still fall in silence, anxiety strikes like arrows in the night.  Fear you cannot

explain lingers in their hearts.  Your life went on but not theirs.

The survivors who escaped death the nightmares still haunt them while you sleep well.  The

First Responders, the visions of that day keep them in a place no one should ever be, they

are trapped, trapped in time.

America changed that day. . The silhouette from the ocean that travelers from afar came to

see was no longer there, just shadows of what once was, a sorrow that can be felt by all

who visit the deep hole left on the streets of New York, a memorial made for all to reflect

on that September day.

All we can do is pray for the hearts that are haunted, pray for the families who lost

someone that day, pray for America to stand tall for us all.  Land of the free home of the

brave, never forget THAT SEPTEMBER DAY!

Teen Winner:

Thump, Pound by Lili Kozlowski

Breath in,

Breathe out.

Jog in place,

Keep moving

“Runners to your marks!”

I’m there.


I’m ready.


Come on. . .


The BOOM makes me go,

Go, go, go!

Everyone sprints,

Everyone goes!

I jog around the corner,

Closing in on my target.

Come on, you can!

Come on, come on!

All I hear

Is my heart and feet

Pounding in unison.

Thump, pound, thump, pound!

I pass the person on my left

And close in on the next.

Come on, you can do it!

Thump, pound, thump, pound!

The curve straightens,

My cue to take off!

I pass them,

1, 2, 3, 4!

I can see the finish line,

Getting closer and closer.

I push myself,

Push, push, push!

I sprint as fast as I can

Half a step behind

The two in front of me.

Thump, pound, thump, pound

I rush over the line,

A grin on my face.

I did it, I did it!


I high five everyone,

Then rush to Coach.

I did it, I did it!

I got 3rd place!

I did it,

After I waited so long.

I went the fastest I’ve ever gone,

And I did it! I did it!

I didn’t hear the cheering

My team was doing.

All I heard was my heart and feet,

Thump, pound, thump, pound!

I cheered and grinned,

And laughed out loud.

I did my best,

And it paid off!

Adult Winner:

I WANNA BE A COWBOY by Robin L. Schwarz

I wanna be a cowboy, learn to rope and ride,

but they say there’s a few things, I’ll have to hide.

No more mascara, lipstick or bra,

and I’ll have to learn how to eat my steak, a little raw.

No more champagne, in a crystal glass,

I’ll be drinking beer with the boys and leaving the bar last.

No more shopping, or trips to the mall,

I’ll be stacking wood, getting ready for the fall.

I wanna be a cowboy, learn to chew and spit,

get my teeth nice and brown, ready for another dip.

I’ll have to sell my pink car, and buy me a Dodge truck,

one that has a big trailer hitch, and a diesel with any luck.

I’ll have to buy a saddle, one that fits my rump,

give up my power steering, over every single bump.

No more tennis, or lunch with the girls,

I’ll have to cut my hair, and get rid of all my curls.

No more ballet, or trips to the opry hall,

I’ll be getting up at dark, eat’n mush at breakfast call.

I wanna be a cowboy, win a rodeo buckle that shines,

I’ll have to learn how to use an outhouse and wait in those long lines.

I’ll have to learn to eat dust, and follow a cow or a steer,

won’t be no gas stations or clean bathrooms, very near.

They say I’ll have to get a dog with blue spots and short hair,

one that bites everybody, and just doesn’t care.

I wanna be a cowboy, learn how to fight and make a big fist,

ya just know some rednecks gonna give my mustache a twist.

I’ll have to buy me  a rope horse that knows how to heel a steer,

and when I miss, learn how to blame my header and drink another beer.

I’ll have to buy a big hat, one that smashes down my ears,

and join Buckmasters so I can learn how to hunt them-there-deer’s.

They say I’ll have to buy some spurs, that clank real loud and jangle,

but keep them away from my big rope, so I don’t have a tangle.

I wanna be a cowboy, learn to shoot straight and fast,

with my 50/80 vision, they’ll probably make me go last.

I’ll have to fix a broken fence and learn about barbed wire,

and make up a bunch of lies why it’s me that they should hire.

Aww heck, what am I doing, most cowboys don’t have a clue,

I think I’ll just stay a cowgirl–YAHOO!!

2021 Winners

Youth Winner:

Hideout by Clancy McCaffery

I have a hideout
It’s in the trees
I like to go up there
And plot and scheme

Adult Winner:

The Storm by Lois Resler

Sangre de Cristo Rocky Mountain WIND sculpts snow in Earth’s climatic cage,
Howling like a two-toungued HELL – positioning the Season’s primal rage.
Clouds dark threats SCREAM outloud, from their mystical place of birth,
Hurling Life’s DEEP questioning, “Is humanity alone, in this frozen Cosmic curse?”

The liquid oceans’ hidden splash is fissured in these cliffs,
And towering heights above treeline, fractured in mosaic rifts;
While the Galileo spacecraft’s data sent from distant stars beyond,
Continues searching for pin-downed life away from this milestone, stormy song.

The wind is laced with moisture flakes that SLAM landscape’s EVERY technology;
The liquid COLD erupts God’s plan, to morph the WHOLE biology.
I stand here small, a shivering dot – an equation to this storm’s holocaust;
A moment in my breakthrough life, studying Drake’s Theory in the frost.

The occurrence rate for existence, among planets orbiting sunlike starts,
And the mystery of how life took root, where I’m at – is creatively quite bizarre.
The range of physics laws, within this storm, multiples my quest and size
Of organic questions in the mess of THIS: The Creator’s perpetual surprise.

The puzzling washboard of relationships – from storm to storm to STORM – –
Fills knowledge hectares, cobbled tight, like a pilgrimage of worms.
Where are the OTHER deep-space plantes with multi-layered atmospheric dome?
And do they have intelligent life, with DNA and bone?

With a sense of folklore and dazzling awe, I face the wind-cold stormy LAND –
And REALIZE Earth – and Universal THINGS – – are exclusively in GOD’S COMMAND.

2020 Winner

Bold by Grace Medina

Oh moon please don’t go
the sun takes control
leaving behind a heart of a soul
stars play in a
whirlwind of magic,
love a figment of
your imagination.
Flowers don’t bloom,
the cold wind hovers.
Three words so cruel and unwanted.
Be bold, the sun
shouted across
The horizon.

2019 Winners

Youth Winner:

Eight Planets by Milo Straight

The eight big planets around the sun
I’m going to tell you about each one.
First there’s Mercury
Then there’s Venus
We all know Earth because we’ve seen it.
Mars’ storms make it dusty,
It is also very rusty
Ceres, well it is really fine
Cloudy Jupiter needs a shine
Saturn’s rings of rocks and ice,
That could be our paradise.
Uranus is so very blue
Neptune is that color too.
Pluto is so very small
That is the last of them all.

Adult Winner:

le temps d’or by Audrey Sizemore

You are life
Its meaning caught in your movement
Blindingly beautiful
Like the waning sunlight on the water behind you
Your motion breaks the plane of plain existence
Defining what was always a mystery before
Describing the love of living
Existing is easy to explain
Right then for a fleeting moment
All the answers are there
Written by your body moving across the field
Until you disappear into the setting sun