Poetry Contest Winners

The Monroe County Library System is pleased to present the National Poetry Month Poetry Contest award winners!  Congratulations to the award winning poets and thank you to everyone who participated.  We look forward to seeing you next year!

Adult Category

Introducing Me to Myself

By Ingrid Ortiz 


I write to find the pieces of myself that I have lost.

I write to define the pieces of myself, I have not yet found.

Between the lost and the found,

my true self has been forgotten.

Leaving aside a hollow shadow.

I see parts of myself in other people,

reminding myself I have given everything,

without expecting anything in return.

The satisfaction of that should fulfill my soul

or at least make up for it

Seeing the best in people has left me blind,

now I beg to see the best of me

I won’t be afraid

I’ll take back what I left in every step I took,

Building myself back together

I’ll lose myself to find me again,

I guess after all that’s who I am,

What I’ve lost and what I’ve not yet found.




Teen Category


By Sophie Dettling


For 3 generations,

Love hurt.

At age 4,

I watched how bad love can hurt.

Half of mom’s heart drove away in a police car.

Love hurts.


My big grey eyes saw the marks that “love” left.

They weren’t Valentine’s day hearts or Xs and Os.

They were bruises the size of softballs

and envelopes that piled up on the counter with big foreign words like “electricity.”

I couldn’t understand, I loved to get mail.

But this mail reminded mom that

love hurts.


At age five,

I sat in a dull room with a woman asking me who I loved.

“Mommy and Daddy.”

Mom’s eyes dropped.

Love hurts.


For three generations,

Love hurt.

Not anymore.

Now it encompasses, motivates, and thrives.

Proving to this product of three generations of arrogant abusers and alcoholics,

That love doesn’t have to hurt.


Love is powerful.

It lifts three baby girls.

Love conquers.

It fights through the tears.

Love reforms.

It teaches black-toothed babies to read and broken fingers to write.

Love takes the scraps and tears and mends them

back into a person who can love again.

Love heals.




Children’s Category


By Jami Creque


It’s just so comforting,

The only place I feel so good,

‘Real World’, what a terrible concept,

Someplace that I never understood;


Dreaming really is so nice,

Where some dream of fluffy mice,

Others dream of sheep, they do,

Or, whatever’s good for you;


Anyone can do anything,

Except, of course, flip a switch,

That’s just the rules in dreaming,

Try it out and give a twitch;


Your mind like a generator,

And hands like tools,

Anything you think is real,

It just can be: that’s the rules;


Of course there are some things you miss,

Like a hug or a kiss,

That’s not normal, but it’s okay,

Nothing is normal anyway.