Daphne Wilkerson was one of three prize recipients for the poetry category at our annual Spring Writing Contest. Continue reading to see more about Wilkerson’s playful and engaging writing.


Oh, you sweet thing, look how you’ve grown! My feet are caked in mud,
And my back stiff,
But it was so, so worth it to see you.

I put my offerings out on the grass in front of you. Baskets filled to bursting with

Anything and everything I could get my hands on.

You tower above me now, but there’s no malice in it. Your shell nearly blocks out the sun,
But there’s comfort in its shade.
You peek your face out at me,

Your eyes droop in concentration, Your whiskers wriggle in anticipation.

I know you’ll go for the apples first,
As they’ve always been your favorite,
But you catch me off guard when you push your slimy head into my chest. Its clumsy, it nearly knocks me off my feet,
But I recognize the sign of affection
As something you used to do when you were

I know there will come a day,
When I can no longer care for you.
I’ll be too old to make the walk into the woods,
I won’t have the money to care for you like I do now, But that’s love, isn’t it?

So until then,
I’ll continue to love you.
Care for you, feed you,
Give to you everything my being has to offer, My dear Helix.