Book Spine Poetry Contest winners

The Fond du Lac Public Library’s annual Fond du Lac Reads celebration in October focused on the novel, Wingshooters, by Nina Revoyr. During the month, the community was invited to “write” poems in the library’s Book Spine Poetry Contest – Talking About Tolerance. Poems were written using the words on the spines of books, movies or CDs.

On Wednesday, Mary Wehner and Paula Sergi of the Foot of the Lake Poetry Collective judged the entries and awarded first, second and third place prizes.

First place was awarded to Noreen O’Brien for her poem:

Heart Disease

The stranger next door

The war against germs

You are what you say

Feel the fear and do it anyway

An imperfect offering:

Welcome to the neighborhood

“We value surprise in a poem,” the judges wrote. “This poem, with its clever title, takes the reader to a less obvious place. It speaks to tolerance and respect for the outsider and the inner struggles we have with the unfamiliar in our lives.”

O’Brien received original art donated by Fond du Lac Visual Arts member Nicci Martin (a decorative bowl, three papier-mache house sculptures and a small painting), a gift certificate from Trinity Restaurant and gift certificates from the library’s used bookstore, The BookCellar.

Second place was awarded to Jean Creydt:

What Comes After Crazy



A promise of hope

Happiness is

The greatest gift

The judges wrote, “This poem displays an unusual play on the theme of tolerance. It presents with just a few lines the bias against mental illness that still exists in our culture. The poem suggests grace and hope as a possible resolution.”

Creydt received a fall gift basket and gift certificate from Bookworld and BookCellar gift certificates.

Third place was awarded to Marcella Paliekara:

The Way Back

We live in public

Trial by media

True lies

Learning from the heart

From the inside

Love is

The only way I know

The judges wrote, “a cautionary poem against judging one another, this writer suggests self-reflection as an antidote to this pervasive social ill. Media and gossip are strong forces but inner strength and love of humanity wins out in the end.”

Paliekara received a gift certificate from Cujak’s Wine Market, the DVD “Dead Poet’s Society” and BookCellar gift certificates.

Everyone entering the book spine contest received a BookCellar gift certificate. All the poems are posted on the library’s Flickr page.


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