Poetry - 1st Place
Marielle Patrick, Ft. Myers High
Freedom Has Never Been Free
You were born with an evergreen spirit
Tenacity unable to be scorched.
You fought for the noblest of causes
Your bark they intended to torch.
Surrounding horrors of enemy fire
Were dimmed by a blazing spirit within.
With humility at your roots and dirt on your boots
You brushed evil from rugged skin.
They marked you finished and declared your battle lost.
They even decided your fate.
But one little detail went overlooked:
State of war with red, white, and blue, a very dangerous state.
Now, missiles fade and barracks seem empty,
You triumphed over unspeakable grief.
Know that your service has come full circle -
An eternal evergreen wreath.
So it is true that the fire inside
Burns patriotic shades and also a green color
Because the American spirit, like that majestic tree,
Bows to God but never another.
Type your paragraph here.
Poetry - 1st Place
Grace Speas, Ft. Myers High
The Evergreen Spirit
2015 Winning Poetry Entries
I am free to worship God and sing his praises, I am free to speak without fear of any inherent harm.
I am free to assemble and I can petition for change. I am free to protect myself and to bear arms.
I am free of the worry of unlawful search and seizure, and due process is always afforded to me.
I cannot be tried twice - that is double jeopardy, and I can only be tried by my peers in a jury.
I do not have to worry about punishment that is unusual or cruel
I walk around totally free and not subject to some despot's rule
They say that nothing in life is free, so I started to think about the price paid for me
It was bought at the expense of men and women who have sacrificed precious time with family.
It was bought with the innocence of youth forever taken from many a young teen
Who cannot sleep and remains haunted nightly by the atrocities they've seen
It was bought with the hearing and the sight of those now deaf and blind from flying metal
It was bought with soldiers' tissue, tendon, bone, and limbs so damaged they wound up dying.
It was bought with spines so damaged that walking and running can happen no more
It was bought with the lives of fathers and mothers, labeled as casualties of war
There are those who question sacrifice and won't support those who are in the fight
Not caring it is because of them that they sleep unmolested at night.
So as I sit here living and breathing free to muse about
Whatever my mind may choose to stumble upon
Or just to be fifteen year old me.
I know the freedom I enjoy has never been free
It has been paid for with the precious blood of patriotis
scattered from sea to shining sea.