2010 Poetry Contest

Ninth Annual (2010) GCC Student Poetry Contest Winners

2010 contest winners

Winners (left to right): Jessica Veltre, Sadie Popham, April Cipolla, Kiley Conklin, Matt Bouwens
(unavailable for photo: Andrea Louis, Kelly M. Johnson, Richard Seitz)
Photo by Mike Garrett

Award Poet Title of Winning Poem
First Prize Jessica Veltre Look at March
Second Prize Kiley Conklin Bulls are Colorblind
Third Prize April Cipolla Holding Pattern
Fourth Prize Andrea Louis Summer Heat
Best Math Poem Richard Seitz Stats a First Look
First Prize Nature Kelly M. Johnson Atmosphere
Second Prize Nature Sadie Popham The Sugar Bush
Director's Choice Matthew Bouwens Matthew

Winning Poems

First Prize - Jessica Veltre

Look at March

Follow the crooked tips of the trees,
Exposed and undressed, waiting for leaves.
Follow the water, not quite yet a stream,
But it trickles and traces each rock, journeying.

Gaze at the sky, it craves to be blue;
Silver still lingers, but there's hope in its hues.
Gaze at the ground, white succumbing to brown,
Green will come soon- Earth claiming its crown.

Lie in the sunlight, feel the kiss of each ray,
Feel the blanket of brightness, warming each day.
Lie in the shade, feel the breath of each breeze,
Let your mind wander, think, dream, be in peace.

Listen to the morning, the noon, and the night,
Birds flutter and sing, crickets chirp out of sight.
Listen to the air, the spirit in the wind;
It ebbs and it flows, it whispers and it bends.

Inhale the scents in flight-toasted, fresh;
Dirt greeting water-- a nostalgic, thirsty mess.
Breathe in new moisture, a livening of life,
An end to frozen fragrance, essence of nature's strife.

Use all your senses, past the average five,
Feel nature's pureness, sensations in drive.
Use every window, bestowed onto you,
To experience nature, for each day is new.

jessica veltre

Second Prize - Kiley Conklin

Bulls are Colorblind

Praise be, to thee.
For it is you that inject life in my veins,
Pumps my heart and burns my loins,
I feel alive with you
Skirting around danger
You my bull and I your matador.

Some day you shall gore me with your horns
And my blood
Will run across the cobblestone plaza
Out of this poem and down over the keys of my keyboard.

But for now
I have sliced your left flank
And we both shall live to pace each other
Eyeing flames:
A symbiotic love.

kiley conklin

Third Prize - April Cipolla

Holding Pattern


You're just like a rabbit,
the kind they use in magic tricks;
One minute you're there
and in the next moment you've split.

I just can't keep going down this path,
familiar, but painful at best,
but I just keep on going back
to this permanent, tangled mess.

I don't know any other route;
I don't see any escape.
My life is repeating over and over
just like your old mix tapes.

april cipolla

Fourth Prize - Andrea Louis

Summer Heat

Stingy yet gentle breezes wash over me
As suffocating heat weighs me down.
Sweat beads trickle down my brow,
like freshly fallen rain.
My eyes squint slits from blinding sunlight.
The silence of the sweltering day screams.
The livestock bawl out their displeasure with the heat,
No shade to be found anywhere.
Yet over all a sense of peace blankets us,
The blessing of a hot summer day.


Math Poem - Richard Seitz

Stats a First Look

As we hear the words, "Mean Median and Mode"
We thought to ourselves this is going to be a rough road

Then at first look, what are all these symbols and abbreviations
who would of thought a circle with a tail meant a standard deviation

After all the numbers are crunched to find the distribution
make sure its right or you will get the teachers retribution

With all the great Mathematical Minds, more often than not
All they could come up with was a box and whisker plot

Skewed left, skewed right, graphs, charts and histogram
Have caused nothing more than a mental traffic jam

After all the duress they taught us Z-score
Oh what a bore

If I knew the challenge of my mind would be from statistics
I think I would Rather studied ballistics.

Who would of thought trying to find simple probability
Would challenge this old mans thinking ability


First Prize Nature - Kelly M. Johnson


The cold does something to me.
It sends a chill up my spine and makes me feel fresh.
It sends me out all bundled up leaving exposed skin raw.
I forget the freshness.

Spring does something to me.
I feel a hope and new life I want to feel all the time.
Then the sudden warmth just isn't enough
I crave more.

The heat does something to me.
I can stay in it all day and be happy soaking in rays,
But then it's just too much
I want the crisp air.

Fall does something to me.
A burst of colors and the feeling of beginning
Though the crisp air fades and begins to feel stagnant.
I long to see a fresh blanket of white.

The seasons do something to me.
Each one fades into the next
Bringing to me a new feeling each time
And it is always just in time.


Second Prize Nature - Sadie Popham

The Sugar Bush

A cool breeze winds through the trees, anticipation for the task ahead builds
The sunshine reflects upon the winding stream as I walk through the woods
On my way to the sugar bush
Standing in the forest, I look around
Dozens of metal buckets hang from the cool trunks
Tin tops like little houses
Containing a liquid gold within, just hidden from sight
I walk to the nearest tree, an old maple, fall's leaves crunching under my boots
Lifting the tin from the hook, a single drop of the gold, cool and clear as rain
Falls to the ground
The sap inside, crystal clear, taste hinting of the future
A golden brown richness the product of much love and work
A pleasure, given to us by the sugar bush
Another day, much work in the sugar house
Crystal turned to amber, much work has been done
Light from the fire illuminates the dawn
On my way to the sugar bush
The sap beginning to flow from the mother trees, the drops creating music
A beautiful sound from many tin buckets, echoing through the trees
Creating magic, given to us by the sugar bush
The magic of maple
The magic of spring

sadie popham

Director's Choice - Matthew Bouwens


The breviloquent nature of my name
when three letters removed
tells much about someone like me.
Who gave permission to call me this
lonely one syllable moniker?
Evil school yard children, education vast,
learned in the gift of rhyme, sought to
dehumanize and humiliate. I rhymed with a word
that was used to characterize me daily. I soon
believed that was all I was. They overlooked
that I possessed other qualities shaping who
I am. Not just a word.
This failure in turn, morphed me in the
self conscious doubter of the good in anyone.
I was only defined as a word that
rhymed with me.

matthew bouwens