For this moment in grace known
For the grandeur of nature ever shown
For the snows of Winter now blanketing all
For the budding of life Spring to call
For the beauty Summer brings to you
For the splendor each Fall in brilliant hue
Signs, markings, the stars, the zodiac to chart
The NOW in Presence, each vision its start
The moment, day and passing year
In gratitude for life evermore dear
A knowing of an inner spirit of calm
Love and faith shielding me from harm
Cold be winter's winds now that blow
Upon my face sun's noon warming glow
In joyful reverence this day gifted new
Creation's love, praise and favor on to you.
Rose Marie Raccioppi
Zodiac denotes an annual cycle of twelve stations along the ecliptic, the apparent path of the sun across the heavens through the constellations that divide the ecliptic into twelve equal zones of celestial longitude. The zodiac is recognized as the first known celestial coordinate system. Babylonian astronomers developed the zodiac of twelve signs. The etymology of the term zodiac is that it comes from the Latin zōdiacus, from the Greek ζῳδιακός [κύκλος], meaning "circle of animals", derived from ζῴδιον, the diminutive of ζῷον "animal". However, the classical Greek zodiac also includes signs (also constellations) that are not represented by animals (e.g., Aquarius, Virgo, Gemini and for some Libra). Another suggested etymology is that the Greek term is cognate with the Sanskrit sodi, denoting "a path", i.e., the path through which the Sun travels.
By Akiko Matsuda • firstname.lastname@example.org • December 24, 2009
TAPPAN — As an educational consultant, child advocate and environmental activist, Rose Marie Raccioppi has spoken at various meetings and workshops over the years.
Her presentations often started or ended with her poems related to the themes of her talk.
To Raccioppi, who is also a published poet as well as an artist, her poems are an important means of communication.
"All my poetry has an acoustical balance, which means when you listen to it ... it engages both left and right brains. And therefore, my goal is to leave something that creates integration," Raccioppi said.
Raccioppi has been designated by the Orangetown Town Board as the first Poet of the Year. Details of her official activities in the coming year still need to be finalized.
Town Supervisor Thom Kleiner said the recognition was well-deserved.
"It is certainly an appropriate honor for Rose Marie not only because of her work but her community involvement," Kleiner said.
Town Board member Michael Maturo, who initiated the creation of the position and nominated Raccioppi, said he was hoping to enhance Orangetown's artistic strength by recognizing talented people in the community.
"I hope Rose Marie's work will inspire people in town ... and make them realize that there's a lot of creativity in all of us," Maturo said.
Raccioppi, a mother of three grown children, started her career as a schoolteacher but later decided to dedicate her skills and talents as a private educational consultant. One of her focuses has been to work with children with learning disabilities, based on her belief that they are differently-abled, not disabled.
Raccioppi said her breast cancer diagnosis 26 years ago was a moment of awakening, prompting her to shift priorities in her life.
"I felt that I faced death, and now I was going to face life in its entirety," Raccioppi said. "That gave me permission to fully embrace and do what was in my heart and soul."
She has been widely recognized for her community service, her work as an educator, and her leadership benefitting children and families with special needs.
Raccioppi said, as the poet of the year, she was thinking about creating a spot in a public space where she can post a monthly poem as well as accepting poems from the public.
"I want the poetry for the people to be a spontaneous expression to represent their passion, to represent what they think whatever their plea is, whatever their absolute joy is. Poetry is everything and anything," Raccioppi said. "I believe, if we reflect, if we are willing to record, we begin to get a sense of priority and direction."
and so the echoes of heart, soul, and quest, be heard...
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