Friday, February 28

Poet’s Playground – May winners

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Age 8 and younger

First Place
Sunday Morning
Asher Milsap, Mountain EC

When the sun comes up
It is time to get out of bed
No need to keep resting my head.
Because church is beckoning me
I get to be free and filled with glee
Breakfast has to be eaten
Though refreshments are served at church
Yummy orange juice is always there
At church, I learn about God
I like the Bible quizzes
My church has a nursery
The perfect nursery teacher is Pia
She always has a great idea
Sunday morning also means no school!
That makes it easy to follow the rules.

Second Place
Brielle Smith, Sequachie Valley Electric Cooperative

Colors are nice.
God gave all the colors.
Everybody in the world loves colors.

And there’s a rainbow song too.
In fall there are red leaves and orange.
A lemon is yellow.
Trees are green.
But my brother loves blue best of all.

You can mix them.
But use them wisely,
You don’t want to waste.

Colors make everything fun.
But black and white are no fun at all.
All the colors are fine with me.

Third Place
Acrostic Poem
O’Connor Zone, Middle Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation

Acrostic Poem “Star Wars”

Star destroyer
The way of the jedi
Republican gunship

World of the force
Always fighting the sith
See 3-pio

Age 9–13

First Place
The Height of Beauty
Emma Daugherty, Upper Cumberland EMC

Bark scratching my hands, my arms
Reaching up, up, up
Swinging my legs off of a branch,
Leaves in my hair,
Lichen stuck to my shoes.
I’m akin to a bird,
So high above the world.
The pink clouds brush
A baby blue sky,
The horizon ringed with warm light.
It’s getting a little chilly,
My mind is anchored to this task,
Right now,
Getting further away from Earth.
I didn’t know birds could be so loud,
Tree limbs so strong,
They could hold me forever.
I would stay.

Second Place
Fall Day
Evelett Ortiz, Cumberland Electric Membership Corporation

If one Fall day you’re feeling gray
I have an idea for a getaway
get in your car and drive away
to the most wonderful place

Red, orange, and yellow
so bright and beautiful
Trees give you air so pure and wonderful
Ziplines, white water rafting

biking, hiking, horseback riding
while I’m singing
while I’m walking
This is what I call home

It’s calm
It’s sweet
and is the place to be
The Great Smokey Mountains
Where we could possibly meet

Third Place
The Grand Ole Opry
Maggie Williams, Cumberland Electric Membership Corporation

Music Music
Lights Lights
Kelsey Ballerini every night

Thomas Rhett singing “Marry Me”
There’s no place I would rather be
It’s the Grand Ole Opry

Country Stars
And Guitars
There’s no movie stars
At the Grand Ole Opry

Founded in 1925
You can watch your favorite country artists live
And if it’s past your bedtime
You should let it slide

Because it’s the hottest place in Nashville, Tennessee
At the Grand Ole Opry

Age 14–18

First Place
Battle Above the Clouds
Alexandra Bristol, Fort Loudoun EC

Old mountain,
Old memories too.
Kids playing,
Up on the rocks.
Many soldiers
Not surprising,
Trouble has come.
A battle fought,
It’s war.
Not kind to families, fathers, or sons.
History is making
Its home out there.
Seeing war
Take over the land.
Old and young.
Run to hide
‘It’s chaos out there,’
Cried many people.
In war
Vile war.
Losing many.
Without a single notice.
An end of beautiful lives,
Ruining families.
Mountain of history.
Etched by battle.
Memories there
On its sides.
Ruins gone,
In this place.
A battleground
Lookout Mountain.

Second Place
Tennessee Spring
Micah Galicinski, Upper Cumberland Electric Membership Corporation

Spring has come at last!
Though winter’s not yet past,
The trees in bloom
Have spelt their doom;
The blossoms will not last.

Twas spring; tis winter now,
The cold did not endow
The time for bloom
Out, it’s a tomb!
Weather holds not her vow.

But when spring comes true,
The trees will not then bloom;
The blossoms dead
Have felt their dread,
Now no fruit will come too.

Third Place
Love Fades
Rorri Goerzen, Appalachian Electric Cooperative

Days like nights
Nights like days

The sun doesn’t
seem to shine at

The moon shines
brights in the
midnight sky

The feelings I
have don’t
seem to fade

I fell for you
you fell for me

The love you gave
just seemed to fade

This pain i feel
shouldn’t be real

I love you
you say you love
me but thats okay
the feelings will fade.

Age 19–22

First Place
Cordelia Moss, Gibson EMC

You taught me to read, write, and figure,
To know the difference between left hand and right.
You trained me to love brother and sister,
To show mercy and give up some fights.
You raised me to honor father and mother;
You modeled submission to the Father of lights.
You taught me to hate sin and love goodness,
To distinguish the wrong from the right.
You helped discover my strengths and my weaknesses,
The limits of my wisdom and might.
You held my hand through joys and through trials;
You let go so I could soar to new heights.

Age 23–64

First Place
The Voice of God
Ned Serleth, Volunteer EC

Three hundred feet under a Tennessee hill,
Deep within Blue Spring Cave,
A crystal lake lies,
Calcite rim-stone enclosed.
Covered in cave clay,
Sweating from exertion at fifty-eight degrees,
I rest.
Carbide light off,
I listen.
Unchanged, millennial silence.
The sound of humankind’s continual
Then …
A drop of water,
Perhaps rained down upon the earth before
Hiroshima, Gettysburg, Trenton, or even Christ,
Now cleansed,
Strikes the surface.
The sound waves spread,
Like the unseen ripples on the lake’s surface
And echo loudly throughout the cavern.
I listen, hear, comprehend,
Humbled before God’s word.

Second Place
Forever Free
Deborah Holland, Pickwick Electric Cooperative

Our state displays it’s history
The Smoky Mountains to The Tennessee
Dollywood and the Opry
To Memphis and the Blues
There Elvis sang his rockin song
“ Stay Off My Blue Suade Shoes “
Heroes we have many
Each has played their part
Sargent York a World War Hero
Was known by his big heart
Buford Pusser was a lawman
That Carried a big stick
He cleaned up McNairy County
Oh yes , that did the trick
The Trail O Tears to Shiloh Park
Forever may they stand
There all free men may gather
As we walk hand in hand

Third Place
A Celestial Girl
L. Aceron

so you found this poem
old enough to drive this
as your song .
you must be my kid someday
reading this bet –
ween two maps .
you haven’t noticed the stars .
so I think I found your mom
by nashville or a pen .
you’ll find a guitar .
don’t have to be
summersong , to be
( in ) a star .
may you take this note
rhyme fiddle with giggle
banish the hurt
hear ten fans turn to million
thirteen , remember
this song is my first
letter to you
your mom
will wait
for y

Age 65 and older

First Place
Old Graveyard
Martha Atkins, Southwest Tennessee EMC

Black veiled shadows prowl
Against a winter sky.
Old graveyards
Guarded by gray broken stones,
Stimulate thought
Of the thing we know
But do not believe.
Steel-chilled wind slices time clean
From breath to birth.
A single, dry leaf glides
Away from the bony earth.

Second Place
Peaceful Secrets
Patricia Murphree, Holston Electric Cooperative

What secrets do the mountains hold?
Was there a meeting place for starry-eyed lovers?
Are moonshine stills hidden below the mountain crags?
Who lies in the unmarked graves on the hillsides?
Whose ancient feet have walked the paths?
Will the Great Smoky Mountains reveal the mysteries?
Awakening sounds surround me;
The mooing of cows on a distant hill,
A dog barking at scurrying nocturnal animals,
A rooster crowing to announce sunrise.
Early traffic echoing from the valley below.
A beautiful mountain and peaceful moments.
Freedom to enjoy the sunrise and
Salute the beginning of another peaceful day.

Third Place
Night Sounds
Sandra Fortune, Mountain Electric Cooperative

Stark blackness embraces the night;
The day fading without light
Soft sounds, shrill sounds
Some providing an eerie chill;
Even the sound of a whippoorwill
Noisy crickets chirping
Hundreds of birds chattering and working,
While alighting in the trees.
Bewitching, interesting sound
With noise all around,
Owls hooting and screeching
Coyotes beginning to howl;
Nocturnal animals on the prowl.
Frogs croaking on the pond;
Pigeons cooing as they bond.
Nightlife is all abuzz;
Providing the melody of the evening.
Sometimes a hum,
Occasionally a roar,
Night sounds fade like flight
Into the dusky shadows of twilight.


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