POETRY IN THE WHITE HOUSE
West Point, N.Y. Hall Evacuated Because of Tom Zart
The White House
March 16, 2007
Ms. Lillian Cauldwell
President and Chief Executive Officer
Passionate Internet Voices Radio
Ann Arbor Michigan
Number 41 passed on the CDs from Tom Zart. Thank you for thinking of me.
I am thankful for your efforts to honor our brave military personnel and their families. America owes these courageous men and women a debt of gratitude, and I am honored to be the commander in chief of the greatest force for freedom in the history of the world.
George W. Bush
SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF WORLD WAR III
Our sons and daughters serve in harms way
To defend our way of life.
Some are students, some grandparents,
Many a husband or wife.
They face great odds without complaint
Gambling life and limb for little pay.
So far away from all they love
Fight our soldiers for whom we pray.
The plotters and planners of America's doom
pledge to murder and maim all they can.
From early childhood they are taught
To kill is to become a man.
They exploit their young as weapons of choice
Teaching in heaven, virgins will await.
Destroying lives along with their own
To learn of their falsehoods too late.
The fearful cry we must submit.
And find a way to soothe them.
Where defenders worry if we stand down
The future for America is grim.
Now's not the time to fight one another
Or kiss our enemy's cheek.
All through history it remains the same
The strong enslave the weak.
May God continue to bless America
Refusing evil, the upper hand.
It's up to us to stay resolute
Defending the liberty of Man.
Poet investigated for sending package
Topeka Copital-Journal Mrrch 5, 2,000
By SCOTT R. GREENBERG
LENEXA --- Maybe someone took that passage about "the rocket's red glare" a bit too seriously.
But all Tom Zart really wanted to do was send poetry to the United States Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., to inspire the cadets. He very well may wind up inspiring them, but he had officials there scared for a bit.
The school received a "suspicious-looking package" last month that had the words "enclosed poems" written on it.
"It felt like something moving inside, a lump. It wasn't packed very well," said Maj. Jim Whaley, the academy's chief of public information.
At 2 p.m. on Feb. 15, about 100 cadets, staff and faculty members were evacuated for nearly two hours from one wing of Washington Hall, a building that houses the cadet mess hall, classrooms and the office of the commandant of cadets.
Capt. Christopher Garrett, secretary general staff of the United States Corps of Cadets, "was contacted by an unknown person who explained he was a poet," Whaley said. "He was a very Southern- speaking man who said he would like to send some poetry to the commandant to inspire the cadets."
Garrett was told he would receive an 8 1/2 inch by 11 inch envelope, but the package Garrett sent was much larger and weighed more than five pounds. The caller never identified himself, according to Whaley.
As Zart, 55, tells it, the misunderstanding came about because of a simple slip of memory.
"I had permission from Captain Garrett to send in my book of poems and CD," Zart said. "I sent it in a priority mail box, and when it got there Garrett forgot about giving me permission to send it. It just scared the hell out of them."
The package contained his recital book of 154 poems, which weighed four pounds. Two CDs were included, as well as 10 copies of each of his 13 war poems with accompanying artwork.
Zart, who has been writing military-themed poetry for 30 years, remained calm when Lenexa detectives visited his home to investigate. He invited them inside and played voice messages he had received from the offices of Texas Gov. George W. Bush, former President George Bush and Sen. John McCain, all of who had received Zart's book of poetry, "Remember When" and his compact disc, "Memories."
Persuaded that Zart wasn't an aspiring Unabomber, the detectives left.
Zart was born in Topeka and lived here until he was 7. He came back every weekend to stay with an aunt until he was about 14.
Zart, now a Lenexa resident, used to work on the Burlington Northern Railroad as a brakeman.
"Sometimes we'd be on duty 16 hours a day, so I wrote poems to keep from being bored," he said. "You get to see the world like other people don't get to see it. You see the river, the moon is out, the farms, cattle, people."
His work centers on military and patriotic themes "because I went to join the military after my first divorce because I didn't care if I lived or died," said Zart, who was rejected by the military because one leg was 2 inches shorter than the other.
"Guys I worked with and went to high school with never came back. I wrote them out of guilt that they went and I didn't get to," he said.
In his poem "Freedom," Zart pays tribute to soldiers injured or killed while fighting for their country: "America has survived all attempts to destroy/Knowing the cruelty of war,/And, we who remain/ Must help keep her free/For those who can march no more!"
"D-Day" recalls the bloody battles and the bravery of the men who fought them: "The corpses littered the beach for five miles,/Though heroism had carried the day./With literally thousands dead or wounded,/Those who were left were determined to stay."
Zart appears on several radio programs, including "Let's Talk with Jim Cates" on AM 580 WIBW, where he contributes his "poem of the week." And every Friday he recites a poem on Tom Becka's show on AM 980 KMBZ.
Poet and Author of
Love War And More
225 poems published by Publish America;
SHEPHERDS of LIFE e-book 350 poems,
CD "MEMORIES" 28 poems with music
by Bill Crain for sale on the web under
Tom Zart and or Bill Crain.
It's appropriate and symbolic that the romantic poet Tom Zart was born on
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