Poets Laureate of Sunland Tujunga


Ursula T. Gibson, Poet Laureate of Sunland-Tujunga (2006-2008), was born in Munich, Germany, coming to the USA in 1934. Three years of college as a Music/English major at San Jose State University helped further her education, and she won the Dorothy Kaucher Award for Excellence in Oral Interpretation in 1952. During all her schooling, the English language and poetry were major interests of hers, and she continued writing poetry, some of which was published. Jim Gibson, whom she met in college, reappeared in her life, and in short term, they married in 1968. Jim pursued his astronomical profession in New Haven, CT., western Argentina, and South Africa, returning to the USA in 1976, and making their home first in Connecticut, and then in California.

She has been the Poetry Editor for Magnapoets, a literary journal published twice a year, for three years. The January 2010 issue is now available. Her own poetry has been published in numerous poetry journals since 1989, when she became serious about her writing. A chapbook of her poetry, "Spirited", containing 48 poets, was published in 1996. Her first book, "The Blossoms of the Night-blooming Cereus," a collection of 68 poems, was published by PublishAmerica in 2005.

Ursula was married for over 40 years to James B. Gibson, a professional astronomer, and lived in Tujunga, California. Born in May 1930, she died on December 9, 2013.


The Evening strolled into the garden,
scattering shadows where the Sun
had left its patches of light,
and trees murmured in the Evening's breeze
to comment on the coming night.
The Evening provided a mood of caring
as it wandered on its way
to other gardens in the neighborhood.
The flowers closed their petals.
The time for rest was good.

(published in Magnapoets, Jan. 2009, p.15)


I opened the front door
and let Autumn wander in,
its cooler air and lesser sun
a relief from hot Summer.

We'd played and traveled,
we'd read books and made music.
We'd seen other houses and
met many people, but now
the Autumn was here,
and peace descended.

Preparation for cold weather,
making sure the animals were safe,
harvesting the hard summer work,
all awaited the first snow fall.

The trees dropped their leaves
and went to sleep for the winter.
We knew they would recover
when Spring returned.

The bare branches made us sad,
but we got out the winter clothing,
and waited for the snow to play in.
Winter would come and go.

And then it would be Spring again!
We would tend the flowers, mow the grass,
care for the animals, and enjoy riding,
and hope for good Summer to last forever.


He stood so tall;
he was so kind.
When I was eleven,
twelve was on my mind.

One day, I said,
I'm going to miss you.
'Cause we're going away.
He said, "I want to kiss you!

Now, don't get angry at what I say.
You're my best friend, going away!"
I turned my cheek,
and my knees felt weak.

But twelve held my amrs
and his eyes filled with smile.
As he kissed my mouth
my heart leaped a mile.

I think of twelve
though we've long been apart.
That velvet softness
stole a hunk of my heart.

Ants in my parlor plants, trail away;
I don't want to kill you!
Moths in the reading lamp, flutter outside;
Fly in the computer room, buzz elsewhere;
Mosquito in the bedroom, hum another tune;
I don't want to kill you!
Cockroach in my kitchen? You --
Haven't got a prayer! ! !

Poets, c/o McGroarty Arts Center,
7570 McGroarty Terrace, Tujunga, CA 91042
Voice: (818) 951.1041 poetlaureate@mcgroartyartscenter.org

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