Tom Zart
“The Westport Poet”

Tom Zart

Tom Zart: Love, War and More
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It’s appropriate and symbolic that the romantic poet Tom Zart was born on Valentine’s Day in Topeka, Kansas in 1945. His youth confronted adulthood many times by working on the family farm or helping his parents in their business. In the early fifties family roots were planted in the famous Plaza section of Kansas City which was walking distance to nearby Westport. He lived there for six months of the year then went to work on their 140-acre Bonner Springs farm the other six months. It was a learning experience that proved invaluable to The Westport Poet. Westport is a historic section of Kansas City, Missouri renowned for its modern nightlife and shops and its noble past as a trading post, a transportation hub and a civil war battle.

It was in Westport, amid the war memorial plaques, the fountains and nature that Tom wrote his first poem, Thunder in the Ground, a civil war ode to the men who died in the war. His inspiration came from an inscription on a civil war memorial.

Zart’s poetic endeavors soon began to proliferate along with his subject matter. Tom, an addicted romantic and history buff, began writing poems about love, religion, and patriotism. His early inspirations came while working at the railroad for 30 years. Zart would utilize his time on those long railroad trips gleaning all that he could from his senses: the haunting sound of the train, its whistle, and the long hours gazing out at the sunset and the pastoral settings fleeting by, of farmhouses and cities whose inhabitants he would never know.

He took notes of his co-worker’s experiences, especially the veterans who told their stories of the horror of war and their sacrifice in World War II, Korea, and especially, Vietnam. The Westport Poet lived vicariously in their spirit and told their stories in his poems.

Tom Zart, who has a distinctive God given vocal talent, would recite his stories and poems at various social events and bistros around the Westport area. His audience was always enthralled and he soon was in demand and they named him – The Westport Poet. His abilities have not gone without notice. He has been published by numerous magazines and his poems were featured weekly in over 215 newspapers across our country with an estimated readership of 6½ million for approximately 5 years. Tom has performed his poems live on radio shows from New York to California.

Index of Writings

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

Z