Craig poetry contest honors the late Carol Jacobson |

Craig poetry contest honors the late Carol Jacobson

Noelle Leavitt Riley

It's often difficult to put feelings into words, especially in the form of poetry, but a total of 177 eighth-graders from Craig Middle School rose to the occasion and wrote poems for the Carol Jacobson Memorial Poetry Contest.

Downtown Books was packed Thursday evening when the top winners of the contest read their work aloud in front of judges, their parents and other spectators.

Brianna Burkett won first place for her poem titled "Running Off Thoughts," highlighting her love for running.

"It's inspiring," Burkett said of winning the contest. "I like writing. It comes to me. I want to be a journalist."

Burkett and others stood up and read their poems, bringing smiles to those who listened, especially Terry Carwile, who was married to the late Carol Jacobson.

"It's one of the most significant parts of what she wanted to see in the community," Carwile said of the poetry contest. "She was a mentor to young women. They flocked to her. Her passion was poetry."

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Jacobson died in a rafting accident on the Yampa River in Dinosaur National Monument on July 29, 2009.

Her spirit lives on through others in the community, and she's honored each year when young Craig writers submit their poetry in her name.

"It's a discipline she really liked," Carwile said of Jacobson's love for poetry.

Jacobson opened Downtown Books nearly eight years ago, and after she passed away, Carwile took over. In December, he sold the business to Liane Davis-Kling.

In an effort to support the arts and poetry, the Northwest Colorado Chapter of Parrotheads gave $95 in prizes to the winners.

"We love judging this contest," said David Morris.

He and others helped sifted through 177 poems, identifying those that rose to the top.

"There were so many good ones," said Jo Ann Baxter, who helped judge the contest. "It was fun though."

Poetry winners:

First Place: Brianna Burkett, “Running Off Thoughts”

Second Place: Madison Weber, “At Peace”

Third Place: Logan Koran, “Perks of a Fisherman”

Fourth Place: Caitlin Bagely, “Something New”

Running Off Thoughts

By Brianna Burkett

Pain burns in my chest

My heartbeat vibrates in my ears

Tears stream down my eyes.

My lungs inflate like a bike tire

The pavement is antagonizing

But I go. Fast. I run.

No one can change that.

I push through the discomfort, go on

I rise above the weak spirit telling me to quit

I do more, I accelerate

The road declares “I can’t” and I can

The road summons me “I won’t” and I will

No one can change that

I am made of strength and perseverance

I’m a body of fast moving blood

Inhaling life like oxygen

I take life in and devour its hate

I run into life like a finish line of joy

And no one can change that

I pick up the fallen along the way

And the road will never stop me

I run off the thoughts

of disapproval, of hate, of bitterness.

I run and push through the pain

For I finish the race

I am a runner

And no one can change that