Photo by Audrey Fitting of GPG members with top prize winners.
At the Guilford Poets Guild’s annual Poets Day, which took place on April 24th at the Guilford High School, Guild members Gordy Whiteman, Jane Muir, Gwen Gunn, Audrey Fitting, Sharon Olson, Julie Harris and Nancy Meneely, with GHS senior class members Simone Wolff, Amelia Urry and James Plunkett, read poems to over 400 students in 4 sessions throughout the morning . We were also joined by Shoreline Cluster poet Peggy Sawyer and Tony Fusco from the CT River Review. Every year the Guild sponsors a youth poetry contest and this year we received 73 entries from Guilford High School students. The top three winners, Amelia Urry (1st prize), Simone Wolff (2nd prize), and Emily Breeze (3rd prize) will be our featured readers at the next “Second Thursday” Guilford Poets Guild gathering, May 14 at the Greene Art Gallery (29 Whitfield Street, 7 p.m.) The evening begins with an open mike to which high school-aged poets are welcome to come read their own poems.
Our event received publicity in the April 30th issue of the Guilford Courier.
The Guilford Poets Guild has lost one of its longtime members, Richard Tietjen. He had been battling lymphoma for 14 years and seemed so resilient, a hardy walker, a special man with a brilliant mind. Recently he had been experiencing high fevers and was eventually diagnosed with leukemia. Early on the morning of April 20 he passed away peacefully, surrounded by friends and family. His obituary in the New Haven Register speaks of how he “followed his bliss writing poetry and working in farms and forests in southern Vermont and New Hampshire…returned to Shoreline Connecticut in 1982 and settled into a challenging and pleasurable job as a computer engineer for Dushkin Publishers and then McGraw Hill…developed a web site for the Shoreline Greenway Trail project…became a member of the Guilford Peace Alliance where he was known for reciting his poetry at their weekly vigils…[and] also was active in various poetry groups including the Art Place and the Yale Medical Group.”
We’d like to share one of Richard’s poems.
Happiness is what I want
to tell you about.
The getting and having,
Live in the same place for five years
watch the cars on the road
wash your dishes in the morning
and try to see
you will never get another chance
to be all-knowing, powerful, and wise.
Living won’t always make you happy
but when you are
you’ll know why
West Acworth, 1983
The Guilford Poets Guild Celebrates National Poetry Month on Sunday, April 26, from 2 to 3 PM at Breakwater Books, 81Whitfield Street, Guilford, CT 06437. Come and listen and share a poem you love.