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Welcome, thanks for visiting  Jenyth's page. The following is a selection of her favorites both by herself and other community members. Please enjoy!

What an Opportunity by Jenyth Jo

For the Grand Opening of the Dougherty Station Community Arts Center


What an Opportunity
By Jenyth Jo
August 14, 2023


To Explore    stretch your heart

make room for new perceptions and attitudes


Experiment in a space where arts matter -

while we practice imagination,

                        we can learn why we matter



Engage          with a stranger who could

become an old friend


                        when others know something you don’t

share their gifts and yours


find energy for the empathy

we need in our society



Enjoy             producing something new to you

making something small into something large

discovering curiosities


Enter             this collective space, and

you become an artist,

an artist who can share joys and challenges

and through this,

connect with a community. 

What We Now Honor by Jenyth Jo

What We Honor Now
By: Jenyth Jo
July 4, 2023


Today we remember the faith

Our founders pledged 247 years ago.

They had a dream

And thought of paths unseen

They knew we must aspire

Higher than we can reach.


40 years ago our local leaders

Pledged a city they couldn’t see

Signed a declaration of a new

San Ramon in 1983

They too knew we must aspire

Higher than we can reach.


Let’s pause and think about what we honor now.

The self-evident truths of San Ramon are these:


Our pursuit of happiness often happens

with our families in pristine parks.

Birthday parties, soccer games

team tournaments with flags a-flying


On the Iron Horse trail, mountain bikes

chase road bikes while the e-bikes power up,

fly down the path to a new overpass

in the shadow of Mt. Diablo.


San Ramon welcomes creativity,

reimagines Dougherty Station Community Center

as a hub for visual and performing artists.

Sometimes growing pains slow us, though

Crow Canyon widening

Parking spots shrinking

Still we aspire to reach higher.


We honor hard work and value volunteering.

We appreciate top schools and an

Educated citizenry that believes

In well-planned growth and supports

festivals of faith for those who embrace them.

We aspire to believe higher than we can reach.


As our trees and city reach the age of maturity

Recycled water grows local landscapes;

our recycling program reduces and reuses

What we no longer need.


In our 18.69 square mile slice of paradise,

we aspire higher than we can reach.

Aspiration becomes action:

that’s what we honor now.

Wind & Kites & Art & String By: Jenyth Jo

Wind & Kites & Art & String
By: Jenyth Jo for the 2021 Art & Wind Festival

San Ramon winds tumble our umbrellas,
tilt popups anchored with sandbags,
glide dragon-tailed kites across the sky.
The dips and flips of the trick kite
make all of us laugh.
I follow the trickster's strings, find
two children trying to control the kite,
and am reminded of what I'm tethered to:
where I've tied knots
and where a single pull
will set me free
very, very soon.
At home, many of us crafted multi-colored string projects:
wrapped string or yarn around nail heads to make art,
form words like "home" or "family".
I imagined each nail head was a friend I tethered to "love".
Many of us are attached
to new dogs on a leash.
We look forward to loosening
the ties on our masks.
It is easy to smile when we think about
everyone we're going to hug
this summer.

By the Dawn’s Early Light by Jenyth Jo

By the Dawn’s Early Light

By Jenyth Jo

July 1, 2020 

By the dawn’s early light

morning mists take shape

as clouds above the Crow Canyon.

Bay fog lingers, fingers stretch over the

top of Morgan territory’s ridge,

as if a cloudy presence is pulling itself up

to see the sunrise.  


By the dawn’s early light

the south side of Mt. Diablo glows

behind circling red tail hawks.

Last year, runners and walkers lined the road

for the 4th of July Run San Ramon.  


This spring, San Ramon spirit shone:

I thought of Betsy Ross hand-stitching her flag,

as many machine-stitched masks for our front lines.

Sheltered in place, San Ramon battled together.

We recognized the greater good,

finding our senior neighbors and shopping for them,

posting senior graduation signs and honking at them.

Some of us planted larger gardens watched them grow,

watered hope by the dawn’s early light. 


On this 4th of July as the sun rises

on skies as clear as 1983 -

when the land I love became

the City of San Ramon-

let us remember,

all of us can author

a stronger democracy

in this dawn’s early light.

Contemplate, Commemorate, Celebrate by Jenyth Jo

It’s been a year.

It’s been a year of persistence within our city limits -

It’s time to burst our bubbles, parade our pods,

gather to expand the grand notion &

celebrate a San Ramon tradition:

4th of July in Central Park.

But first, let’s contemplate:

What kind of courage did we need to get here?

We saw quiet acts of heroism when battling the unseen

frontline responders met our sudden need

We know San Ramon sew-ers gifted piles of PPE

our essential citizens kept quarantine

we learned the value of senior volunteer hours

kept an eye on our friends through Facetime

What kind of courage to reach out to strangers &

neighbors we met not a moment too soon?

We repurposed parking lots for vaccine drive-thrus

stacked masks on our cars’ turn signal levers

crammed our computers into closets,

conquered work from home, turned yards into gardens

taught our children and their friends outside the classroom

ate in circus-tented outdoor dining rooms.

Everything slooooowed down, so we gained weight and waited.

Let’s commemorate the wait…            Meh.

One day this May we were rewarded with wonder:

San Ramon bloomed - wedding dress white roses adorned Bollinger Canyon –

clusters of red and coral carpet roses merged by freeway onramps.

Scooter riders switched to bikes

training wheels removed, and we’re off!

Pedal power south down Iron Horse trail.

Walk strollers north, under the summit of Mt. Diablo -

our movements reveal beauty, illustrate our hope.

Let’s celebrate our growth

As we restart our city, stretch our arms

like our boulevards that grow east and west

and say the new phrase, “I’m huggable!”

Fall into the embrace of family and friends,

welcome to our new sense of community the same as 245 years ago

when we declared ourselves.

Let’s celebrate this gathering in Central Park,

after a year without live music, theatre, the arts.

We deserve to dance and sing and party

share the celebrations with a circle larger

ready to continue the community we’ve grown

here – close to home – in San Ramon.

July 4, 2021

By Summertime By Jenyth Jo

By Summertime
By Jenyth Jo

If we look carefully,
the hints are all there.
Bollinger Canyon cherry trees
have dropped their blossoms
and are leafing out, as they should.
Manicured lawns of Central Park
are ready for soccer teams and art festivals.
Our firemen run laps around Iron Horse,
the park, and the beautiful baseball field,
waving to other first responders and the dog walkers.
Unimaginable how traffic has decreased
while our slowing lives leave time to create memories:
the Scooter Crew has another member!
He’s three now, riding older brother’s wheels.
Dad had time to paint the blue scooter red.
Older brother takes off his new bike’s training wheels
Mom cheers for them as she pushes the stroller.
The family glides by and waves as I sew
another PPE in the kitchen.  From my window
I watch and wait for my “New Day” yellow rose
to bloom.
Strange how a cloth mask centers our lives.

Postcard Prose Poem by Jenyth Jo

Our country’s Shelter-in-Place policy has changed our lives these past few weeks.  Doesn’t it seem as if time has slowed down, and we have been isolated forever?  While we are waiting for good news, we can use this time to reach out to the friends and family we miss, via a simple postcard.  Or, write some words of inspiration, and mail it to ourselves!
Here, we are going to take a 5’ X 7” rectangle and fill it with words.  There is no right or wrong or one way to do this.  The postcard prose poem may use regular or prose language, may use the meter and rhyme of poetry, or perhaps hybridize both forms.  Just as COVID-19 knows no boundaries, our imaginations may expand beyond what we believe to be possible.  Here is one example:

Dear Daughters:

Did you ever think we would be separated by so many miles - way beyond six feet- during a national emergency? We are more than distant points on a map, however.We form a triangle, a three-legged stool with incredible stability and balance. Don’t let any news rock you.

Here in San Ramon, the cherries are done blossoming and the valley hills are emerald green and mustard-covered. Our fave restaurants are serving take-out food, so I had Kung Pao tofu in your honor. (Don’t worry about your Easter eggs; I already ate them.)

Stay well, stay strong, stay home!
Love, Mom

Click here for a postcard prose poem template, or draw your own!

Create Bravely,
Jenyth Jo
City of San Ramon Poet Laureate
Preservers of the Harvest By Jenyth Jo

Preservers of the Harvest
By Jenyth Jo
November 2020

Strange how the label of my
Apple Cider Vingear
describes the starter of the culture
as the "Mother".
Of course it starts with the Mother
who divided and shared
her starter for the sour dough
we tried to keep alive this spring.
Mothers are wild yeast-
add lactobacilli and water
watch them make magic
dough rises, baguette bakes
cabbage becomes kimchi
soy beans umami into miso
tempeh cake turns firm
grape must converts into softer wines.
Fermentation is older than
the archelogy that discovered it.
We drink our kombucha and kefir
add crème fraiche to cherry pie
boil boba into pearls
drink matcha, sprinkle sriracha
pickle peppers for the salad
dressed in tangy vinaigrette.
Mothers make the sands of time finer
when grains fill the tile grout
it's time for fall cleaning
time to remember your vinegar.

Growing, Blind by Kinsey Ybarra, California High School

Our Poet Laureate, Jenyth Jo, recently hosted a poetry contest. The theme was "Double Vision:  If hindsight is 2020, what do you see when you look back?  What do you see when you look forward?  Write a poem that considers the double nature of being in transition.  What insights have you gained?  What questions still remain?"
Here is the winning poem:
Growing, Blind 
by Kinsey Ybarra, California High School

What if the caterpillar had known, 
before his time 
That with all his elegance of prismatic design,
he would one day become a butterfly.
Would his credence in 
Mother Nature, 
furling himself into a cocoon of uncertainty 
Still be seen as bravery? 
And what if the Sun had known,
before she set 
That with all her colors of kaleidoscopic grace, 
she would rise again in the morning.
Would her yielding herself to 
the Moon,
stepping aside to let the other shine
Still be seen as strength? 
But what if we had known, 
before the years of seasons flow 
That with all our triumph of pure determination, 
we would achieve greatness. 
Would our leap of faith into 
the Future, 
treading into foreign waters to spend our days 
Still be seen as fortitude? 
The truth is not your answer; 
for there is an underestimation in 
being blind.
In order to see growth, 
one must look to the past, not 
The Future— 
it holds questions 
and secrets you haven’t yet thought to keep...
But if one is aware of what lies ahead,
then that is not growth at all, 
but rather knowing. 
Knowledge from the past may set direction
upon careful reflection 
It is Uncertainty that pushes 
a miracle into a masterpiece.
The butterfly is beautiful because the caterpillar did not envision
The sunrise is beautiful because the sun did not expect 
And our futures will be beautiful because we will not presume. 

Uncle Lee’s Glass Eye by Jenyth Jo
Cousin Julie just called:
Did your dad really have a glass eye?
Oh, the memories of that glass eye…

Nothing could really replace Dad’s
Ever-changing eyes
Blue in his Air Force tie
Hazel in his Navy sailor whites
Green in the camo pants
He wore in the garden
As his hoe attacked the weeds.

His hand-eye coordination was astounding:
With a hoe, a bat, or a golf club
He could hit anything and hit it
Anywhere he wanted.
He put a spin on the ball
So it would land and stick
Or roll away.
He’d say, "I’m putting a bit of English
On it" like the British Open announcer.

Eye squinted, he read the green
And curved the ball ever so
Gently into the hole –
The touch on the club
Was light and elastic.
(He painted the putter club head gold,
Then sprayed gold glitter on it. Why?)

I never saw him shoot a gun
Except in Disneyland’s Frontierland,
There, he rested the rifle on his shoulder
Squinted his eye, and pulled the trigger.
"Oh yeah!" he’d say as Goofy’s head fell over.
He must have been a great shot-
Many marksman medals in
Mom’s type case cabinet.

He hunted as a boy in Kansas
Signed up for the war at 17
And saw the ocean for the first time
As he chugged to Okinawa.
Getting Dad to talk about the war
Was harder than picking up a single
Grain of rice with chopsticks-
He learned to love Chinese food
The spicier, the better, he’d say.
But he wouldn’t talk about
The Japanese box full of
Coins, a medallion, and a large
Machine-gun bullet that showed
Signs of extreme heat.

What Dad would do
Is play basketball on the driveway
Teaching me and you, Julie, to put
Backspin on the ball
Creating a shooter’s bounce.
"They had a hoop on the aircraft carrier
That picked me up," he told us once.
Why did you get picked up?
"Kamikaze" was the only word we got out of him.
Like a Harlem Globetrotter, he’d dribble
And twist his body around and launch
A bomb that had no chance of making it.
But he’d yell, "I’ve sunk another."
We never beat him in Battleship, either.

One time in the driveway when I was about six,
He started yelling, covered his eye, and
Ran to the gutter, picking up something.
"My glass eye just popped out!" he said.
"Oh daddy, lemme see" I said.
He kept his fist closed, but his eyelid was
Flipped up, red and gruesome.
I screamed.
"Want to see my eye, or
Should I put it back?" he asked,
Serious, no dimples showing.
No twinkle in his eye.
He turned around, popped it in,
Then returned to grin and grab me.
"It’s from the war" he’d say, but no more.

When I was home one summer
And you were a visiting 9-year-old
He pulled the same trick on you, Julie.
But, he winked at me, because I
Knew the glass eye wasn’t real.

In his last days, I learned the
Melted bullet was from the kamikaze
That strafed the ship
Before it crashed into the captain’s bridge.
As his ship went down,
Dad grabbed a bullet rolling down the deck,
Burned his hand, jumped overboard, and swam.

So many other memories he never shared:
Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Korea
Those sights are buried with him.
And the glass eye? It must have been
One of the many tricks he played
To deal with the tense boredom of
Waiting for the war: shooting hoops,
Hitting mythical golf balls into the Pacific,
rolling and capturing baseballs on the listing ship’s deck.

Or, maybe that glass eye
Kept the horrible sights he’d seen
From leaking out of the corners
Of his memory.
Good Morning by Jenyth Jo
Morning mist rising
Before the kids roll out of bed.
Coffee steams before cream
Settles in.
Sun streams between pines,
Lightening the lake,
Brightening the spider’s web.
My neighbor’s fragrant morning fire
Wafts over the bellied-up boats.
Murmurs of voices from across the lake;
Murmurs of frogs from the island;
Osprey diving, rising with breakfast.
The fisherman’s fly line
Arcs, framing Monet’s clouds,
Castle Peak, and my friends
Calling from their canoe:
“Good Morning!”
New Lights by Jenyth Jo
Standing high by the Memorial Park flagpoles
Gazing down the curve of Bollinger Canyon Road,
I see San Ramon swag atop the posts of light
What shapes are taking form in the fog?

I see silver, crystal and gold Flattened chevrons that capture light.
In the morning they glisten, speaking
Different languages, suggesting many symbols.

The gold coins drape across
A Bengali sari of silver.
Or, Christmas gold garlands
Adorn ice-coated branches
Maybe it’s the trim around
A Cheongsam collar
Or the foil covering Hannukah gelt.

This festival of lights now means
Many things to many people:
I see Diwali, Las Fallas, Hannukah
Lunar New Year, Christmas and Kwanzaa
[I see a landing strip for Santa
And all the dreams he represents!].

Now we have silver, crystal and gold
Flattened chevrons that reflect our light
In the evening, from all angles.
It’s as if we’ve earned our badge of honor:
Bay Area’s Best home for families.

Or, oh, now I see:
The swag is the top of a giant
champagne glass: to toast the future
Let’s light a future for all.
Ancient Grains by Jenyth Jo
Ancient Grains
by Jenyth Jo
Ancient grains of ancient origins carried
across the sand and sea to bulk food bins.
Our grains have additive properties
like wheat plus rye becomes triticale.
My mom once told me grains are cereals,
her old-fashioned Quaker oats rolled
in boiling water on the coiled electric stove;
she stirred in raisins to unlump the clumps.
Ten years ago, no gluten-free aisle
today so many ways to prepare daily bread
Is it time to try something new?
Tiny teff, pre-historic einkorn, spelt, amaranth?
Harvest and holiday items invite me to enter
the store, but the aisles have changed again.
I’ll look through every grain to find my couscous.
Sorghum, farro, bulgar, and buckwheat
Here’s a bag of Harvest Grains -
a seasonal combination of red quinoa,
Italian orzo, Israeli couscous and baby chickpeas.
When cooked, plump particles look like fall.
If I spread all of them on my black ceramic cooktop,
which ones go together?  Do I arrange them
according to color or shape or size,
or swirl the grain into a mosaic?
I want to blend the singular seeds,
people this world with variety
combine the old worlds with the new
embrace our multi-grain community.