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May 2019

WCCOA Holds 11th Annual Poetry Banquet

Wood County, Ohio –The Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc held its eleventh annual poetry banquet and drew in eleven entries from all over Wood County. The poems reflected the individual’s personal feelings about life, hope, dreams and love. We were looking for poetry that, in some way, celebrates the heart and souls of members of Wood County citizens as they continued to celebrate their lives
A celebration for the entries and recognition of the winners took place on Monday, April 24 at 4 p.m. at the Wood County Senior Center. The declared winner was Jenise Templin Fouts from Weston, Ohio author of “Inspired by Love.” The second place winner was Nancy Wikoff Leetch from Bowling Green, Ohio with his poem entitled, “A London Dream.”, and Lieselotte Sielicki of Perrysburg, Ohio received an Honorable Mention for her work entitled, “Our Dream Came True.”
When asked about judging the Poetry Contest, Bowling Green State University General Studies Writing Instructor Chad Michael Van Buskirk comments, “Judging the poetry contest was a wonderful opportunity to engage with the fascinating and meaningful experiences and insights of our community’s older adults. The pieces submitted remind us that thoughts of memory, desire, loss, and resilience are perennial. Reviewing the submissions is always an enjoyable, enlightening process.”

Winning poem by Jenise Templin Fouts:


She peeks quietly into his bedroom and is greeted with a sleepy smile.
A happy start to the day.
Changing and dressing him is followed by breakfast.
She savors a cup of coffee while he feeds himself.
But another day looms long before her.
How to keep him entertained and still get done what she needs?
Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc.
305 North Main St., Bowling Green, Ohio 43402
501-3C Agency Serving Older Adults in Wood County
Operating Seven Senior Centers
Enjoy, Enrich, Explore This Season of Life
Will he be good today
Or throw tantrums?
There’s no way of knowing.
It is hard being alone in a family of two.
There are bills to pay
Meals to be made
Shopping to be done
A yard to mow
A vehicle to maintain
Errands to run
Appointments to keep
It never ends.
And it all falls on her.
Groceries today.
She takes him by the hand to the car
And buckles him into his seat.
He enjoys getting out,
Especially if the stops include the ice cream shop.
Somehow the hours tick by
The day ends.
She gets him ready for bed,
And he smiles up at her when she kisses him goodnight.
“Happy anniversary tomorrow,” she whispers to the man who no longer knows her.
“It will be our 49th.”

Second place poem by Nancy Wikoff Leetch:

A London Dream
Sometimes at night, if I can’t sleep,
I go in ribboned memory, (I don’t count sheep!)
To London town to
Walk the vibrant streets once again.
There is lunch-talk in the garden of the Chelsea Artists Club;
Even the armless statue stares at the fountain of a frog upon it’s shell!
I go through the garden and walk on olde church streets,
Rubbing a bush of Rosemary as I go.
I wait to get on the red double decker bus #11 and, suddenly,
I awake!
I realize ‘twas only a
London Dream……

Honorable Mention by Lieselotte Sielicki:

Our Dream Came True

We boarded a ship-way across the sea
Wondering, where our new home will be.
Alone New York City was so large,
Glad to get off this military barge.
It was all new-those buildings so high,
Sure was hard to see the sky.
Then came a train ride-out west we went
Exactly this countries opposite end.
We met people there-also like us
They went to Ohio to work with glass
My hubby too-how lucky he was.
A pick-up we bought and had to pay.
We drove from the west to Ohio we went
Through 11 states-is there no end?
As we rented a place with A little guilt,
We looked for land and a house to built.
But lord and behold we were not alone.
Other immigrants came to help build “Our Castle”
Then we did the same for them without a hassle.
Throughout time we made lots of friends
Especially those who lend us their hands.
But time has changed over 60 years
All friends passed on-with many tears
We love this country and never regret
That we came to this land “To make our Bed”
God Bless all and their families too
Thanks again-rest in peace, you and you and you.

The Wood County Committee on Aging would like to extend a sincere thank you to all of the entries for their contributions to the contest. The contest committee would like to extend a special thank you to Bowling Green State University for assisting with the judging of the entries. To read the winning poems visit our blog at http:/woodcountycommitteeonaging.blogspot.com

Winners of the WCCOA Poetry Contest
Winners of the WCCOA Poetry Contest

(NOT as listed directly under photo–this is the correct listing)  Left, 2nd Place, Nancy Wikoff Leetch,  Right, Honorable Mention, Lieselotte Sielicki

Not pictured, 1st Place, JeniseTemplin Fouts

WCCOA Poetry Contest2

About the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc
The Wood County Committee on Aging was founded in September of 1973, and is dedicated to the planning and development of programs and services that will allow older adults of Wood County to remain as independent as possible for as long as possible. As Ohio first nationally accredited senior
center, the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc is working to encourage older adults to enjoy, enrich and explore this season of life.

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