CARRBORO, NC -- More than 80 people gathered at the Century Center on Thursday night (May 11, 2023) for an Advisory Board Appreciation Banquet held by the Town of Carrboro.
The group was welcomed by Mayor Damon Seils, who expressed his appreciation for their service. Also in attendance were members of the Carrboro Town Council. Carrboro Poet Laureate Liza Wolff-Francis read “A poem of appreciation,” printed below.
The Town has about 21 advisory boards that provide input and recommendations to the Town Council. Learn more about advisory boards and how you can participate at https://www.carrboronc.gov/228/Advisory-Boards-Commissions
Thanks to Wesley Barker and Mary Bryant of the Town Clerk’s office for their work in organizing the event.
A poem of appreciation
A single human amidst the forest,
drape of vine, caw of crow, press
of loam underfoot, deer quiet, watching,
a rabbit hops, a stream gurgles.
Right here, you fit in, just so,
as one of the many animals
who move atop the earth. You fit in
as one of the many alive species here
on this planet and you fit in among
the many other humans.
In all of that fitting in, you have not
been recognized enough for all you do,
for all you say, for all you don’t.
But tonight, we are here to recognize
all of the things that make up you,
your unique view of life, your experience,
the tone of your voice, your style,
the patterns in your hands, your jawline,
the sounds you make, your outline
and substance, the things we may not
know about you, like what you think
about when you’re alone, what poems
you recite to the ancestors
and their memory.
How you got to be who you are today
hasn’t been recognized enough
and where you come from, the people
before you, what they loved,
what brought them joy, what gave them peace. All of that is mixed in with the dirt,
the water, the stories, the centuries
of spun cells that make up you.
This poem is to recognize you.
It is for all you do, for all you say,
for all you don’t. This is an appreciation
for the boards you serve on, for the groups
that are stronger because of you,
for the town that is a sturdier community,
because of your work, Thank you!
It is not a single tree that makes a forest
or a single plant that makes a garden,
or a single person that makes a town,
it is a gathering of people who bring
their talents, their ideas, their voices,
who bring themselves to meetings,
whether virtual or in person, month
after month in vision of a place
where there is equality, opportunity,
joy, sharing, caring, laughter, love.
There are not enough words to
recognize the entirety of you,
to show your complexity, your work,
the way you fit in as one of the many
species of Carrboro. But I give you
this poem as a small note of appreciation.
For all you do, for all you say, for all you don’t, for being here in our town
and for being you,
Carrboro Poet Laureate
Lillie Atwater, Quinton Harper and Mae McLendon were among the guests at the Advisory Board Recognition Banquet.