November/December 2020 Lyric Contest Winners

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Congratulations to all our November/December 2020 Lyric Contest winners! CLICK HERE to enter the Jan/Feb 2021 contest, deadline November 15 @ 11:59 PM CST.

1st Place

The Blindness Excuse”
By William Simons
Ware, MA
 
You say you don’t care if we’re purple or green
But I’m black and she’s brown so what does that mean?
If you can’t see color then what can you see?
Through those rose-colored glasses when you’re looking at me
 
When evening gives way to the cover of night
Is my blackness affirmed in the absence of light?
And would you declare my skin color moot
If you put your hands up and I still chose to shoot
 
You can untie the noose
You can unload the gun
But the blindness excuse
Can’t undo what’s been done
 
You like to tell me I’m articulate and smart
While you’re stroking my ego and blessing my heart
But I don’t need your praise, your pity or tears
Or some colorblind world to magically appear
 
What I need instead is some faith in you
That I can be me and you, can be you
I’m proud to be black and you’re proud to be white
So, let’s rise up together and fight the good fight
 
You can untie the noose
You can unload the gun
But the blindness excuse
Can’t undo what’s been done
 
I closed my eyes for a long time
Pretending that I couldn’t see
Then a switch flipped on
Like the break of dawn
And for once in my life I felt free
 
You can untie the noose
You can unload the gun
But the blindness excuse
Can’t undo what’s been done
 
You can untie the noose
You can unload the gun
But the blindness excuse
Can’t undo what’s been done
  
 
2nd Place

People Inside of Pictures”
By Stephen Schuster
Westborough, MA
 
People inside of pictures
Pictures inside of frames
These are my family fixtures
All their faces, all their names
 
Mothers with their husbands
Fathers with their wives
All these kids and cousins
That make up these family lives
 
Home is where I’m going
Home is where I’ll run
To meet those generations
I’ll see in the world to come
 
Immigrants with pushcarts
Ambitious for their sons
Trying to make a new start
Like they were the chosen ones
 
Some choose grand professions
Some work with their hands
All had great intentions, sometimes
God had other plans
 
Home is where I’m going
Home is where I’ll run
To meet those generations
I’ll see in the world to come
 
People inside of pictures
Pictures inside of frames
These are my family scriptures
Every story that remains
 
These are my constellations
See how they shine
Upon this congregation
That makes up my family line
 
Home is where I’m going
Home is where I’ll run
To meet those generations
I’ll see in the world to come
I’ll see them when we’re reunited
in the world to come



3rd Place

I’m Sorry”
By Charles Mitchell & Dean McConatha
Sylacauga, AL
 
By the time you get this letter
I’ll be doing so much better
Then I know I’ve done, in almost twenty years
 
Today I’m three months sober
And I know the fight ain’t over
But I’ve grown so much, through all the pain and tears
 
Chorus
I’m sorry; I’ve wasted all this time
All the hurtful things I’ve said to you, haunt me every night
If I can just forgive myself, maybe one day so can you
But for now I guess I’m sorry, is the best that I can do
 
I know that you’ve heard me say these words
So many times before
I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t want to listen anymore
 
But, I don’t know what else I can do?
The words may seem the same to you
But deep inside I know I’ve really changed
 
Chorus
I’m sorry; I’ve wasted all this time
All the hurtful things I’ve said to you, they haunt me every night
If I can just forgive myself, maybe one day so can you
But for now I guess I’m sorry, is the best that I can do
 
I know I can’t un- break the promises I’ve broken
And I know I can’t take back all the crazy words I’ve spoken
 
I’m sorry; I’ve wasted all this time
All the hurtful things I’ve said to you, they haunt me every night
If I can just forgive myself, maybe one day so can you
But for now I guess I’m sorry, is the best that I can do
 
Only time will tell if what I say is true
 
I’m so sorry



4th Place

Five Until Forever”
By Stephen Hooper
Negaunee, MI
 
A thousand new directions
An ever-changing riverbed
Unmapped trails we've never traveled
Just a foggy picture in your head
In the absence of all certainty
On the whims of what we're sold
Watching longingly for signposts
Entangled in the weeds along the road
 
Have you the time
I wanted to share it with you
People and places we knew
Five until forever
 
So we chased the burning summer
And the promise of the new
California sunsets
Sprawling Rocky Mountain views
We made our home beyond the water
And the stoic evergreens
Endless childhood stories
Up and down these old familiar streets
 
Have you the time
I wanted to share it with you
People and places we knew
Five until forever
 
Walk with me a little longer
Or another sixty years
I hope our children will remember
The love we had, my dear
 


Honorable Mention

“Grandma’s Kitchen Table”
By Tim Crowley
(Des Moines, IA)
 
 
“Livin It Down”
By Clint Swank
(Ithaca, NY)
 
 
“When You Push The Clouds Away”
By William Kapac
(West Wildwood, NJ)
 
 
“It’s My Job”
By Robyn Taylor
(Nashville, TN)
 
 
“Staying Close”
By Joe Colavito
(Ringwood, NJ)
 
 
“Burning Man”
By Mark Meed
(Willow Grove, PA)
 
 
“The Pocket Watch”
By Jason Peterson
(Lafayette, LA)
 
 
“This Is My Dirt”
By Josh Clements
(Pleasant Hill, NC)
 
 
“Graveyard Boogie Blues”
By Fred Reilly
(Haines City, FL)

 
“Within A Beating Heart”
By Andy Alatza
(Westfield, IN)

CLICK HERE to enter the current American Songwriter Lyric Contest. 

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