Central Arizona College Poetry Contest Winners

Central Arizona College Poetry Contest Winners
By Angela Askey, Executive Director Public Relations and Marketing

Pinal County, AZ – The Central Arizona College Learning Support Department recently held their annual poetry contest to celebrate the contributions of African Americans. This year the theme for the Black History Poetry Contest was “The Legacy We Leave Behind.”

The winners of this year’s poetry contest are:

Kiana Earley-Palafox, Maricopa Campus – 1st
Fernando Ramirez, Maricopa Campus – 2nd
Ivan Smason, Online – 3rd

Following are the winning poems.

Is Colorism My Only Legacy by Kiana Earley-Palafox
Being called mutt like some spotted dog
Or morenita like I don’t belong
Saying I can’t be a part of them
Because of the depth of my father’s melanin
They say “Only a race trader would’ve laid with him to make you
So sorry mixed girl you can’t come through
Because when will it end?
Not just at you
If we allow one darkie in, then we must allow two
That becomes a few.”
I nod okay and see the table of
My melanin kings and queens,
A feast of beautiful Afrocentricity
I go to take part and they act like I shouldn’t be
The slave masters really divided us didn’t they
You were in the field
While I was in the kitchen
But it wasn’t a glam paradise for me
Serving as an incubator for men with evil deep within
Some of these wet nurses barely past pre-teen age
But I wish you could see I’m in the trenches with you
That when they look at me
It’s with the same fear and disgust they also give you
Then maybe you could see that
Even though light skinned my black is beautiful too
Just like you with your pearl hue
And that your story is my story too
The Legacy We Leave Behind by Fernando Ramirez
When you see me I want you to know, there is much more than my exterior can show.
You can see my smile, but behind it is pride that stretches for over a mile.
Pride in where I come from. We don’t accept or settle for the last crumb.
We fight for justice and rally against fear. We know that History is now here.
You see my attire but might never know, what each color and pattern is really meant to show.
I wear my ancestry with love and pride, The Legacy we come from I will NEVER HIDE.
We are a people of love and care. We succeed and thrive every where.
Let my courage and strength be your guide, just as the lessons of our heritage are our pride.
The contributions made by those in our past, have left such impact and love for generations to last.
Raise your voice, sing and praise when you rejoice.
Say it loud and say it proud.
Speak and build your mind, for remember my brother’s and sister’s…This is the Legacy We Leave Behind.
I'm Talkin' (About New Orleans) by Ivan Smason
I'm talkin' bold Buddy Bolden and the Mardi Gras
I'm talkin' old fashioned opera
And the Philharmonica
I'm talkin' about Sidney Bechet and Louis Armstrong
I'm talkin' about New Orleans all night long
I'm talkin' Louie Moreau Gottschalk and Jack Dupree
I'm talkin' Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Ellis Marsalis
Delfeayo Marsalis, Jason Marsalis and the rest of the family
I'm talkin' Jelly Roll Morten and Louis Armstrong
I'm talkin' about New Orleans all night long
I'm talkin' a whole lot of brass bands in Congo Square
Kid Ory, Harry Connick, Jr., Irma Thomas, Allen Toussaint
And Professor Longhair
I'm talkin' about the great George Lewis and Louis Armstrong
I'm talkin' about New Orleans all night long
I'm talkin' James Carroll Booker and Dr. John
Antoine "Fats" Domino and the Nevilles
Up at Audubon
I'm talkin' about Mahalia Jackson and Louis Armstrong
I'm talkin' about New Orleans all night long
That is the end of this New Orleans music song
I hope someday you'll join me and sing along
-- www.centralaz.edu --
About CAC
For more than 50 years, Central Arizona College has been serving and educating the diverse communities of Pinal County.  With five campuses located strategically throughout the county, CAC provides accessible, educational, economic, cultural, and personal growth opportunities for those of all ages.

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