By Jim Williams

CHICAGO (CBS) — An eighth grader in the south suburbs wrote an email to CBS 2 that couldn’t be ignored.

She’s a poet, and expressed disappointment her work wasn’t getting more attention. So CBS 2’s Jim Williams was happy to spread the word about the budding wordsmith.

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Melody Ilesanmi, a poet at 13, finds the right words, when they’re needed most.

“I love my dad so much. He really is a fighter. Whenever I would frown, he would make my smile brighter,” Ilesanmi said.

The daughter of Nigerian immigrants grabbed her pen when dad Fred battled cancer.

“My dad won the battle and as a daughter I am proud. He beat the dreadful disease. Sorry, cancer. Three’s a crowd.”

“I couldn’t believe she could put everything in poetry. We fought and we conquered the cancer,” said Fred Ilesanmi.

One poem pays tribute to frontline workers.

“I salute our heroes everywhere and every time zone, fighting with us so we don’t have to fight alone. You are a gift that keeps giving so we can keep living. You are fighting in the darkness, braving the belly of the beast.”

Melody discovered her love of poetry in third grade and relished how her verses made others feel.

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“They would either say you’re making me cry or they would be very happy and it just brought joy to other people.”

Now an eighth grader at Wentworth Junior High in Calumet City, she’s featured on the school’s website under the banner “Rising Star Creates Beautiful Message”

“I know we can still rise, though we seem to be defeated. Maybe this fight was exactly what was needed.”

A call for unity, a year into the pandemic.

“We seem pretty divided to me. So I think if we have a chance at fighting this invisible enemy — COVID — then we had to fight it together.”

On Inauguration Day, Melody found inspiration from another young poet, Amanda Gorman.

“It gave me motivation because thinking she got up there. Who knows. Maybe I will one day, too.”

“So thank you, our heroes. I know you have this in the bag. Thank you for continuing to push on and never waving the white flag.”

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Melody’s proud dad said she’s a straight-A student. She just learned she’ll be published in a book that includes the work of other young poets.