Poem of the Week: Boca Raton Branch Poetry Workshop collection

Boca Raton Branch Connects-Heart-to Heart Stories in Poetry Workshop

In honor of Sheila Firestone, president of the Boca Raton Branch of Pen Women, Vera Ripp Hirschhorn, Poetry Chair, invited members and patrons to her home for the first workshop on poetry and music. Participants were asked to create poetry as they listened to two of Sheila’s original compositions, “The River of Grass, Rhapsody No. 1” and “The Hearing Forest and Seeing Field.” Members were not told the titles of the pieces until the very end. Enjoy the poems.

CORRIDOR by Lea Hope Becker (to Sheila’s first piece)

I’m moving through a long corridor
There’s not a light nor even a glow
I may emerge from eerie space
And find my way to Eden

Is it night, or has the sun come out above the seashore’s edge?
Casting its sunburst effect upon the water
Watching waves and hearing their soothing sounds

I must glide until the watery end
Careless of the boundary
That which seals the day I die
Whilst I cross into the open sea

Merry from the visit
Happy to be free.


A New York Moment by Marlene Klotz (to Sheila’s first piece)

They met by chance
Two strangers afloat at a party
In a Trendy Manhattan apartment
A mutual chemistry occurred
That was instantaneous
Despite a light snowfall

The starry-eyed pair
Left the building and
Headed toward Central Park
As they walked hand in hand
Under the feathery snowflakes
The man in the moon looked down
And winked its approval . . .

Two strangers were now one.


“THE CALL TO JOY “by  Etta Schaeffer (to Sheila’s second piece)

Sing, sing sounds of laughter and light

whispering a call to cheer

smile and feel the building joy within

lightness fills the air building to a melodic ending

over and over hear the call

the sound is haunting.


‘The Sun Glows’ by Vera Ripp Hirschhorn (to Sheila’s second piece)

Where are you?
I’m here.
Play with me!
Not yet.
Skip with me!
Dance with me
Sing with me!

Walk with me
Listen to the birds.
The sun glows over them….
Over us.


Listen by Sheila Firestone (to Sheila’s second piece)

The conversation is carried by the wind
The anime is constant,
Parts of conversations and overheard nuances,
Only partially understood.

Take nothing for granted,
Maybe you heard wrong,
As you create your melody or
poem, it really doesn’t matter.

It’s an interesting tale at any rate.
Tell me it yet once again, please.
I’m always listening
to your wise words.



  1. Charlene Hampton Holloway says:

    These are all beautiful verses but I do love “Listening”. As a writer, I was amazed how many times I wrote the word listened–as I learned from two older gentleman, much wisdom noting that word under the picture of my late WWII hero Dad who passed at age 70 years on Feb. 18, 1987–30 years ago. I enjoyed these poems. They lifted my spirits and hopes! Congratulations!!!



  3. Helen Brower says:

    Wow, I’m completely awed by these amazing poems. Little did I realize that I’ve been sitting down to lunch with such inspired poets. Kudos to all of you. Helen Brower.

  4. Dayle Herstik says:

    Wonderful words to express the inspiration of the music. Our poetry workshops are always really nice. Sorry to have missed participating in that one. Next time. To my talented and special NLAPW Boca colleagues, you always shine.
    Dayle Herstik

  5. Betty Besner says:

    Sheila,thank you for sending me this beautiful composition and the poems. You are a great artist so sensitive to everything around us. I can feel this forest as I listen to your music and I understand because I always feel at my best surrounded by nature. Nature speaks. I am truly honored to know you.

  6. Brenda Layman says:

    What an excellent idea! Reading the poems gives me strong impressions about the nature of the music. Beautiful work!

  7. So impressed with the beautifully created/inspired ‘gifts’ of poetry shared by you Boca Raton members.
    It makes me truly want to hear the pieces composed by Pres. Sheila to have inspired such delightful words and feelings!🙏🏻
    From Eileen Borgeson, SF, CA

  8. Linda Newman Woito says:

    I really really like a couple of these poetic responses. Thx for sharing!

  9. What a treat to read these poems. I wish technology will catch up one day so we’ll be able to listen to the music that inspired them. Lovely verses!

    Alexandra Goodwin