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Building a Better World—With Poetry!

Posted by Yves Etheart

Thank you to everyone who submitted a poem to Queens Library’s 2017 Summer Poetry Contest!

Hundreds of writers sent in their poems based on the theme of our Summer Reading program, “Build A Better World,” a subject which is important to many of us, given the current turbulent times in our society—and that includes our four first-place winners.

Post-High School/Adult winner Cassandra Smith

“My reason for submitting a poem was mainly based on my interest in the 'Build a Better World,' theme,”  said our adult winner, Cassandra Smith, whose “Resurrecting a Melting Pot” reminds its readers of the strength and promise of the American dream. “Greatly saddened by the current political unrest, injustice, and indifference forced upon us, I felt the need to make a difference.”

Grades 4-5 winner Erin Wong with Queens Library President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott

Our Grades 4-5 winner, Erin Wong, used one of her school projects as an inspiration for her poem. “I decided to think about a time when I helped build a better world. So, this is how I came up with the idea of writing about my STEM project from 4th grade,” said Erin. “My poem is meant to be a model of a world in which everything has eco-friendly features. Even the materials I used to build my project were recyclable. Through my STEM project, I learned that if everyone works together, we can contribute to build a better world.”

Grades 6-8 winner Ruchie Kops

“It was easy to work with the theme because there was a lot to work with,” said Grades 6-8 winner Ruchie Kops. “When something bothers or inspires me, I sit down and write a poem. There are so many things that we could improve in the world, that we should try to work on.” Improving ourselves and our connections with others was the focus of her poem, “Rebuilding the World.”

Grades 9-12 winner Shlomit Ebbin

For Grades 9-12 winner Shlomit Ebbin, her poem was “a lesson on how one person's actions can affect how another person turns out. My message is that the way to build a better world is to treat others with kindness, because you don't know the impact you can have on someone.”

We’re glad that our summer poets were so moved by our theme, and that they shared their voices with us and our readers.

To read the Summer Poetry Contest winning poems, visit the Queens Library blog or pick up a copy of the November/December 2017 issue of Queens Library Magazine.