Spring Poetry Contest First place winner, Who’s Missing?

Written By Mary Corro

Seated around the table

We are

Each with a place setting

Who’s Missing?

People who look like me

Experience life

Like me

Who’s Missing?

What’s on your plate

Who dished it out

Will you savor it or choke

Sometime we are fed

What we are

Supposed to swallow

Who’s Missing?

At times it’s delicious

Other times revolting

But we taste it, nonetheless

It doesn’t taste like

Any home cooking

I would recognize

Who’s Missing? 

Where are the foods

Of my childhood

Of my family gatherings

What do I answer when my son

Asks what to take to a White Thanksgiving

My reply is tamales and chile

Who’s Missing?

He takes my recommendation

But also prepares a salad, vegetable tray

And pumpkin pie

He returns with

A salad, a vegetable tray

And half a pumpkin pie

Who’s Missing?

Where are the tamales

And chile

I ask

They loved it

I felt included, he replies

We ate our family food

Who’s Missing? 

My son has found

His seat at the table

He plate contains 

His home cuisine and society’s dishes

His family has grown

He is allowed to be welcomed

He is no longer missing!

Spring Poetry Contest Second place winner, The Hope of Spring—

Written By Leni Checkas

Sometimes it’s hard to see the signs of spring,

because they’re hidden

in the buds of the apple tree

and the tingle of warmth on the breeze.

The surprise of spring can bursts through

with the first instance of a single pastel tulip

the soft buzz of a bumblebee over a dandelion

and the sudden burst of sun on your face.

The signs get hidden by darkness and chill

but soon, the renewal will be all around.

Spring Poetry Contest Third place winner, Overwhelm.

Written By Melia Henrichsen

The great unknown 

What does the future hold for me? 



Am I capable of being 

Thrown into the real world 

Will I drown? 


Will I learn to swim 

Amongst the rest of society 

Engulfed in the ocean 

Waves crushing me 

burying me 

pushing me further and further 


until I’m 

Buried neck deep 


My breath gone, 



thin air 

Floating away like a balloon 

Immense stress that is 




Becomes its own person 

Takes over my body 


No room for me 

I am powerless 

I am broken 

I am no longer me 

I am no longer in control



My brain transformed 


to rock 

Can’t think 

Hit on the head with a boulder 




I tell myself 

Ignore the stress 

Push through 

But it doesn’t work 

How will I succeed in life? 

What is success? 

Is it the American dream? 

Is it a good career? 

Is it power? 

Is it money? 

I think 

True success 

Is happiness 

Is joy 

Is love 

Success is surrounding yourself with people 

People who can support you through your overwhelm People who watch with you as your overwhelm dissipates Like water evaporating 

Finally the sun reappears 

After a stormy night 

Left with a rainbow 

Stronger than before