Elena Westbrook’s poem was selected to run with a Waste Management outreach campaign focusing on Spanish speakers. Contributed photo

Elena Westbrook’s poem was selected to run with a Waste Management outreach campaign focusing on Spanish speakers. Contributed photo

Redmond writer’s poem featured in recycling campaign

A Redmond resident recently had her poem selected as part of a Waste Management campaign tailored toward Spanish speakers in Puget Sound.

Elena Westbrook wrote a short poem, known as an ode, which competed against more than 100 others to be featured in the campaign.

“I hope that inspires a person to think about it twice before they would throw a can, that hopefully they’ll think about, to have a conscience,” she said.

The campaign was orchestrated by the C+C organization on behalf of Waste Management and includes television and radio advertisements as well as fliers.

Westbrook said it is important to reach out to people in their native language because many times translations from English to Spanish contain errors or phrases that cannot be easily translated.

For example, she said there is no direct translation for the word “driveway” in Spanish.

“I think that it will make more sense for people,” she said.

She also hopes it will foster a sense of empowerment and ownership.

Fely Oropeza, with C+C, said the campaign was for Latinos and crafted by Latinos.

While Westbrook’s poem is short, it says a lot in under 50 words.

Westbrook got interested in environmental causes after watching “An Inconvenient Truth.”

She also became a writer after watching the documentary, and is working on a historical novel.

But the ode to recycling for Waste Management is her first piece of published work.

“I was very glad they had this opportunity in particular for Spanish speaking writers,” she said.

The poem is featured below in Spanish with an English translation following.

“Reciclaje”

tu eres el granito de arena,

tu envías un mensaje de amor

a generaciones futuras

en latas

y botellas de plástico limpias,

tu escribes un pacto

de preservación

en papel seco,

tu empacas siglos de

respeto al planeta

dentro de cada bote de reciclaje,

tu eres compromiso

“Recycling”

you little grain of sand

you send a love message

to future generations

in cans

and clean plastic bottles,

you write a pact

of preservation

on dry paper,

you pack centuries of

respect to the planet

within each recycling bin,

you are commitment


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@redmond-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.redmond-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in News

Google Images
Racial disparities in bike helmet law forces decision by King County health board

On Oct. 21, the King County Board of Health discussed striking down… Continue reading

Geographic dispersion of Washington State Patrol commissioned personnel who lost their jobs Oct. 18. (Washington State Patrol)
Rather than get vaccine, nearly 1,900 state workers lose jobs

Exactly how many people will be out of work for ignoring Gov.… Continue reading

A King County Elections ballot drop box.
OneRedmond candidate forum aims to inform voters before Nov. 2 elections

Redmond candidates were asked the same five questions on issues in the community.

King County Courthouse adjacent to City Hall Park (courtesy of City of Seattle)
County council votes to take dangerous park out of Seattle’s hands

City Hall Park, next to the courthouse in downtown Seattle, has had multiple reports of crime.

stock image
Health care workers call on state’s hospitals to help mitigate staffing crisis

Health care workers unions claim hospitals have the resources to fix the issue.

file photo
Eastside Fire & Rescue says their response times will not be affected by absence of unvaccinated employees

Spokesperson says about 13 employees have left the department at the moment.

File photo
Do you need to pay for your COVID hospital stay?

Washington state law requires hospitals to provide free care for certain income brackets.

Stock photo
State AG Ferguson leads effort supporting local journalism

Federal legislation offers tax credits to subscribers, businesses and news organizations

File photo.
Four COVID-19 variants are more likely to cause hospitalization

Four COVID-19 variants are more likely to put you in the hospital,… Continue reading

NW Carpenters Union members strike in downtown Bellevue on Sept. 16 (photo by Cameron Sheppard)
Carpenters back to work after tentative agreement reached with AGC

Union VP said agreement includes 15% wage increase as well as expanded job site parking.