The contest was a huge success, and we proudly present the winners of the first ever Lit.Org Poetry Contest!
The Lit.Org Poetry Contest Deadline has come and gone! Below are the
winners of Lit.Org's first poetry contest. Congratulations to all the winners!
1st place: (Hazelfearn) Real Name: Jennifer Deanne Walker
Bio: Having grown up in a military family which moved roughly once every two
years, Jennifer Deanne Walker is a 27 year old aspiring poet who spends her off
hours away from work obsessively editing her writing, teasing her boyfriend,
amusing her cats and occasionally gloating over a looming record decade spent
in one place.
Winning Piece: Summer Spectres Dipping
Through twilight they glow: cole slaw, sliced onions, Watergate salad
the girls in the wading pool playing mermaid, and your father
there, still manning the grill in his classy couture:
Bermuda shorts, penny loafers and navy dress socks
"Poor Dad, no fashion sense ah-tall" you mumble
as we toy with the silver-bucketted citronella candle
our slow fingers loading up funky layers of wax
The sharp nagging whine of zigzagging mosquitoes
disguises the duller drone of Highway 70
lapping up in subtle roars just beyond your front lawn's shore
How that road will weave, redundantly, through our months to come
I'm already planning the placement, you know
of our usual collections - ironically shaped
stones, shells, and postcards, seagull feathers, Polaroids
Collections which will, of course, lapse unfinished (per our rhythms)
How is it that there always seems to be
never enough and too much simultaneously?
Through this vivid sweep: Summer, Summer, you languid bummer
Oh, just go relish another barbeque sandwich (if only one bite more)
and in an hour's brief spell we'll have our fireworks.
2nd Place: E. V. Noechel
Bio: E.V. Noechel lives in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she fosters animals
for Raleigh Rodent Rescue and works as a bookseller. When not writing or
doing the aforementioned, she enjoys watching Passions, writing her
congresspeople, and rating bowling alleys on their gothic charm for
GothBowl.com. Her work has been featured in Sojourn, Center, Open Minds
Quarterly, and many more. Her first book of poetry, Museum Mundane, has
been released by Argonne House Press of D.C and was nominated for the 2003
Pushcart Prize. The second book of poetry, Murder of Crows, has recently
been released by the same press. She has completed residencies at Vermont
Studio Center, Headlands Center for the Arts, and I-Park, and has received
grants from the North Carolina Arts Council, the United Arts Council, and
The Culture and Animals Foundation. www.evnoechel.com
Second Place Winning Piece: Almost Haiku
It's the taste of vodka like a drop
of the stomach and the prickly sweet cherry
soda we mix with it. It's the smell of cigarettes
and leaves and the sound of a voice, the sound
of sentences without words, not you,
but the moon the cicadas sing to,
dripping light and somewhere enormous
bits of rock meander silently by. It's our porch and
melting ice like glacial
movement in the dirty jelly jar glass resting
on your skinned knees,
it's almost Haiku.
Third Place Winner: Bud Stupi
Bio: I taught first and second grade for 26 years and never lost sight of
the child within me. My students helped me continue to look through the eyes
of a child.
Third place winning piece: Eating the Universe
Eating the universe
would be a wondrous delight
I'd start in the morning and
be finished by night
The Delicious Sky
of Strawberry Pink
Raisined with Birds
a huge Lemon Sun
over Spearmint-Green Grass
holding Lime- Colored Leaves
and wash it all down with a
#1 Summer in Las Cruces by Sheila Black
Bio: Sheila Black received her MFA in 1998 from the University of Montana. She's had poems published in Poet Lore, Willow Springs, Redneck Review, Blackbird, and Ellipsis among others. Her awards include U.S. winner of the 2000 Frost-Pellicer Frontera Prize given to one U.S. and one Mexican poet living along the border, the Ellipsis Prize judged by Stanley Plumly in 2001, and the 2003 Editor's Choice Prize from Heliotrope. She also received a Pushcart nomination in 2003.
Summer in Las Cruces
I rehearse my death through dull desert summer afternoons,
trying to love what is right in front of my eyes,
trying to imagine myself not part of it anymore, this everyday world of hamburger
in Styrofoam packets and children to be picked up from daycare,
work deadlines, the grief of a burned dinner. My husband
makes lists of names he is afraid of forgetting: Burdock, ambergris,
phainopepla, chrism. When I met him he was a birdwatcher, every June
out early with the binoculars, ears cocked, listening.
The song is the essential thing, he told me then, hear the song and
you will see the bird. Now we are sliding into middle age like sleek low cars
hugging the road. This summer, I take my kids twice a week
to a pool so hot and sifted with chlorine, we smother ourselves
with white cream, our eyes sting. Yet still the water feels cool,
welcoming, so that basking in it we envision
a world which hugs itself around us, lost Eden, humming under
the firestorms, explosions, global multiplication of rage,
world of the firstborn, the one we hunger and are forever
losing, our bodies moving through space, our minds numinous and arcing
forever back towards it. Burdock, ambergris, phainopepla, chrism.
2nd Honorable Mention Ivor E. Hogg
Bio: Ivor.E.Hogg 70yrs young divorced father of three and Grandtather of three. I live in a small village in north easr England My interests are reading and writing poetry, painting and drawing.I am an avid reader with special interests in sci fi ,fantasy,reincarnation and mysticism. I worked as a police officer and social worker for most of my adult life and still work as a volunteer grief counsellor.
Not this year
When summer comes, then spring has gone
and winter should be far behind.
I have regrets but only one
one memory I keep in mind.
When summer comes with warm sunshine
and gentle zephyrs that softly call
me forth to share in the delight,.
That summer can bring to us all
or used to do, or used to do.
I walk alone for you are dead
we walk no longer hand in hand.
I walk with sorrow in your stead
and no one seems to understand
That when you died my heart died too
it's always winter without you.
Third Honorable Mention J.M. Gilliard
Bio: J.M. Gilliard lives, works and writes in Tornado Alley in Northern Alabama. When not ignoring potentially hazrdous weather, he splits his time between teaching Japanese martial arts, working on the staff of Lit.Org and spending time with his beautiful wife and two wonderful children.
the season of my birth...
drinking barechested from a black rubber hose...
drinking honeysuckle wine from our chain link fence...
ice cream cones I can't eat fast enough...
singing Jack and Diane under the rattle and hum of mower blades...
the smell of fresh cut lawns, pressed in black plastic
the smell of comic book pages, impatient to be read after a long walk home...
speeding downhill on bike pedals trying to catch the breeze...
skinny dipping on humid nights, watching fruit bats skim for flies...
driving with four down going eighty, with no destination necessary
falling in love with a tie-dyed bikini, as she ignores the adolescant weight of my stare...
losing my virginity, in sheets full of the evening breeze...
baja shorts and frisbee to the tune of an unfamiliar radio...
the growing hate of dusty text books and windowless rooms...
the beginning and end of my first marriage...
long chats with my long absent father, bereft of recrimination...
midnight cigarettes chasing away mosquitos...
the pale blue of my newborn's eyes...
the definition of life, strength painted green
burning bright at both ends, unafraid of the approaching fall.
Fourth Honorable Mention: Morgan Wyatt
Bio: Morgan has been writing poems since a grade school teacher made the mistake of compilmenting her work long, long ago. Morgan was later led to believe that poetry had worth when her junior high locker partner stole her poems and turned them in as her own. So on she writes in the simple hope that her poems may bring a smile, a laugh, it even a truth to the reader. She can be contacted at email@example.com.
Windows down, radio blaring, hair flying,
Natalie and Janet were out to be seen, and to see
"Major hotties in red convertible, two cars behind us."
The red Corvette pulled along side the Celica
Didn't cover that in Driver's ED
A shouted direction led them to Jim's Auto body parking lot
Where the Greek Gods of Sun and Peroxide jumped out of their car
without even opening the doors.
flashing perfect orthodontic smiles.
Drivers were switched with barely a word
Natalie watched in horror as the tail lights of her car
disappeared down the curvy road along with her best friend.
Wynn flashed a smile which was blinding combined with his tan.
All thoughts of her car vanished with a wink and a comment,
"We're dancers in the All Male Revue at Coyotes tonight."
Strange things happen on hot summer nights
When the moon is full
Sometimes dreams come true, other times fantasies do.