Shannon K. McKenzie

That Which I Have In My Mind, I Will Hold In My Hands

Shannon McKenzie

Shannon McKenzie
Apeldoorn, Netherlands
December 28
I am a poet and an athlete. A devoted mother. A fine lover. A baker and an excellent cook. I am in awe of life and can't wait to see what it has in store next.


FEBRUARY 20, 2010 6:29AM

Young Composers Meeting 2010, Apeldoorn, the Netherlands

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For the last 16 years, the city of Apeldoorn has hosted the Young Composers Meeting (YCM). Out of hondreds (maybe more!) of pieces sent in for consideration, 15 are chosen to come to Apeldoorn and "compete" for one of four prizes in the shape of money and commissions.

Every year, for the past nine years, these composers have stayed in our hotel during their week of rehearsals with the orchestra "de Ereprijs". Each years brings us a different mix of young individuals from all over the world and each year we enjoy the energy that they bring into our home.

At the end of the week, the Final Concert is given on Friday evening. And we get to hear where all their efforts have led to. As usual, I attended the concert this year, which was last night.

Most of the pieces of music made an impression on me, some lasting, some not. All worthwhile. This morning when I woke up, I found myself thinking about some of what I'd heard and felt the need to express myself in the way that is natural to me, poetry. So here they are. Art begets art as life begets life.


The music by Jeromos Kamphuis was…


So quiet

It didn’t even have a name.

So subtle

You would hardly know it was there.


Yet anything but effortless…

The smaller the sound

The harder you have to listen,

The more you have to get in it’s way

To hear.

To feel.

To know.


I know.




Composer : Juan de Dios Magdaleno “these sounds I hear keep me from total madness”

Being able to walk

Up to the edge

And not jump

But knowing that you could.


Seeing the source

Of your torture

In front of your eyes

Yet still not closing them


Feeling the choke in

Your throat, clenching,

Every word spoken

And not swallowing it down


Hearing the very things

That exhaust sanity.

“These sounds I hear

Keep me from total madness”




Composer: Sean Friar Fighting Words


It sounded like American Guilt.

We’re either the Bully

Or the Savior.


What about the gray?

That area in between

The swinging pendulum.


That’s where most of us live.

Are we mediocre?

Or level headed.


I, too, find it hard to dwell there.

So I swing from Guilt

To Bully


Closing my eyes

In between

The swing.



Composer: Ben Oliver Broken Society


Only when you shed

Light on the dark

Can you see the darkness


We need to see the dark

To appreciate the light

Otherwise we remain blind


Blind to what’s broken

Unaware and unable

To mend what we can’t perceive.


Some shine the light

Others see it

Yet no one fixes it.



Author tags:

guilt, bully, war, madness, broken, quiet, poetry, music

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Type your comment below:
shannon explain composers have stayed in our hotel in apeldoorn who is our? do you and someone else own a hotel? good writing each and every poem loved composer: sean friar fighting words it sounded like american guilt we’re either the bully or the savior xox