Age 8 and younger
Sylvia Yarnell, Middle Tennessee Electric
Made just for you and me.
See the flowers big and bright
And the fireflies fly at night.
It’s getting late, in your bed you lie
Looking out the window, at the sky.
Wake up in the morning, say “Yippee”,
Another day in Tennessee!
Bubbles and Bears
Audrey Cook, Cumberland EMC
I was blowing bubbles one fateful day,
But then I saw it, big and round,
A bear, a bear, right on the ground!
I blew some bubbles right at its fur,
But then I saw a big, big door!
I started running over there,
But then I saw people everywhere.
I tried to get through, but what did I see?
The bear was falling dead right at my feet!
“Oh, what a bear!” said the crowd as it
hit the ground.
“Back to bubbles,” I said with a frown.
I blew and blew till they hit the ground.
Maidens of the Seasons
Megan DiCello, Southwest Tennessee EMC
As the Lady of Winter blows her last kiss,
The green spring grass sparkles with
frost from her icy lips,
But the Princess of Spring melts the
snow with her bare dancing feet,
And seedlings raise their heads as the air
grows warm and sweet.
Winter’s now gone defeated, she lies
only in snowy mountain tops,
Spring is leaping into full bloom, but
this is not where change stops,
The Queen of Summer lies on the
horizon, readying her veil of heat
But for now Spring’s rains reign, with
her life giving May showers.
The Melody Of The Valley
David Smith, Fayetteville Public Utilities
Dancing branches at the tippy-top of
trees singing the brisk sound of spring
breezes. Deep in the earth a new seed
splits open with the subtlest sound and
from its shell a new root squeezes. Frogs
and crickets make up for the
winter silence with lively sonnets only
God could script. Majestic bears shout
thier roaring presence after rising out of
thier winter Crypts. Proudly every creature
adds to the musical piece, as though
it’s an honor to live this new year.
And with gentle voices every bird, fish,
and tree call to each other to say they
John Lewis, the Representative who Marched
Rae Ellyn Kelley, Middle Tennessee Electric
This crusader we honor today
with diplomat ‘John Lewis Way.’
Lewis studied in Nashville, you see.
Learned how to protest like M. L. King.
Sit-ins, arrests, and beatings intense,
Freedom Rides, testy experience.
In ’65, he sought to manage,
a peaceful pass of Selma’s arch bridge.
But two minutes into their attempt
‘possemen’ clubbed folks, tear-gassed,
John, skull fractured that ‘Bloody Sunday,’
made his appeal to Prez L.B.J.
Broadcasts on TV brought attention,
heralding a new recognition.
Fewer than six months later, in fact,
Johnson decreed the Voting Rights Act.
Age 65 and older
Barbara Williams, Cumberland EMC
In steady rotation
We watched every sunrise.
The tundra blanket protected bulbs
Their yolks wriggled through chilled
Poking out emerald, then golden cups
Deeply breathing crisp air.
Moist, heavy heat dried Spring
Turned tree lines into jungles
hiding cicadas screaming in cacophony.
Dehydrating brightness dimmed to
Porch evenings sipping tart coolers
We awaited frost.
Then mornings, evenings —
With zephyrs calming the heat, brought
On thinning foliage —
red, orange, yellow —
As summer’s dahlias eased the passage’s
Spring held no warning
of winter’s cruelty, ice,
Leaving us huddling, waiting, hoping.