February 26, 2020 Poetry Jam - Journeys to Niles Township

On Wednesday, February 26, 2020, the Skokie Fine Arts Commission hosted a Poetry Jam as part of the 2020 Coming Together in Skokie and Niles Township program. Chairman Pam Garbarini and three other commission members read poems, as did several community guests. Read Chairman Garbarini’s clever poem below, and watch the Village’s Shop Local Skokie Facebook page during March 2020 when a fabulous poem about Dempster Street restaurants of old, written by Commissioner Sharon Vicker, will be published.

My Journey to Niles Township
Pamela Garbarini

I was born in Chicago, so my journey was all of 10 miles
But the impact it had on my life was quite great when we moved to the township of Niles.

It was in the mid-1950s, after scrimping and saving and patience,
My parents were ready to buy their first house. But where were good locations?

My father worked in Chicago, so to avoid a long commute,
They looked near the new Edens Expressway, which seemed, to him, a good route.

With two adorable little girls and a third one on the way,
Mom wanted to be by a good school, near a park where the kids could play.

Skokie was growing by leaps and bounds, and seemed like the perfect spot.
They found new home construction near Jane Stenson School and they purchased their very first lot.

On weekends, we’d go out to visit the site, first just a hole in the ground,
But then a foundation, then studs, and then walls, then a finished house. There was joy all around!

We moved in during the spring of ’56. My mother is living there still.
Lots of good memories and lots of good friends, a sense of neighborhood and good will.

The park district, library, synagogue, schools, all gave us reasons to stay,
So I repeated the cycle when I became a mom, and Skokie’s my home to this day.

February 26, 2020 Poetry Jam