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> IBPC Winning Poems, 2009, Congratulations Poets!
Cleo_Serapis
post Feb 12 09, 10:01
Post #1


Mosaic Master
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From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for January 2009
Judge Elena Karina Byrne
Congratulations!


First Place
New Neighbors
by Eric Rhohenstein
criticalpoet.org



Yellow jackets ascend like mortar fire from the cherry’s split trunk.

Spikes of fennel rise in the side yard,
where the garden was before the old man died;
his grandson somersaults through a choke of new clover.

The day is dry;
I should be cutting lawn.
squirrel at the birdfeeder
ground-skirt of grackles
the village the village!
fire alarm hum crescendo, and again
Much like autumn wind: product of a gavel falling.

(Soon enough, the cherry’s branches set against a winter skin of sky)

Boy, do you hear the pop songs aging,
aging from kitchen windows?

(Across Erie, the edge of Canada erupting from spring lake-mist)

Some things are broken before they’re ever bent,
but only some.

(One day, the summery inside of a woman)
hay-rolls at the velvet
edge of vision sunrise sunset
and how it goes,
and how it went.
As if this was the start of anything;
it’s only a lion’s mouth grown wider, wider, roaring.

Much like your mother’s: the logic of donning play-clothes, of not missing dinner.
farmers’ daughters fatten up
we sons of nothing much
the village cream is drawn
cup by cup make whey! make whey!
Afternoon dogs sing the pressure of dawn.


"New Neighbors" ignites a fresh, sensory motion forward. At "the edge of vision" the poem revitalizes literal vision alongside the figurative vision of the mind's eye, "how it goes." Language in motion becomes a key process of seeing through an ever-changing domino-effect of metaphor: yellow jackets ascend, a grandson somersaults--crescendo, autumn wind, gavel falling and so on, until the poem reaches the marvelously mundane-sublime place where "dogs sing the pressure of dawn." --Elena Karina Byrne



Second Place
First Frost
by Christopher T. George
FreeWrights Peer Review



A last ochre magnolia leaf twitches
like the index finger of a dying man;

under the ginkgo, yellow leaves spread
& all the birds are in motion, swooping,

diving: robins, starlings, cardinals,
a brace of cheeky blue jays—o one vaults

into the magnolia like a trapeze
artiste and devours a bud.


"First Frost" is a Buddhist-like, automatopoetic polaroid view of nature, targeting our vulnerability of perennial-impermanence where a magnolia leaf "twitches like the index finger of a dying man." The use of assonance and subtle end rhyme keep the poem beautifully close-fisted, bud-like, ready to be devoured. --Elena Karina Byrne



Third Place
Dinner With the Ghost of Rilke
by Laurie Byro
Desert Moon Review



Come here, to the candlelight.
I’m not afraid to look on the dead.
I was confused by snakes looping
around your neck, the little girl voice that you had
to swallow in order to please your mother. I told you
as you twirled a red flag to draw away the slathering

wolves that you would never disappoint me.
The crumbling bridge where we said our goodbyes
all those years ago must even now contain
the echoes of our voices sleeping in its seams.

How many inexhaustible nights did I stay awake
to answer your letters? You asked me to steal something
risky, something I couldn’t take back across the street.

Greedy for praise I filled my pockets with
sugar. Outside the café the night becomes a snow globe.
Held in your gaze, winter takes me back.


"Come here" the beginning of "Dinner With the Ghost of Rilke" commands. Because of the strength of diction, we follow this instruction and immediately become participatory, complicit observers. Rilke's "necessary irrepressible... definitive utterance" colors the voice that is swallowed, a presence, nevertheless, heavy as two pockets full of sugar. --Elena Karina Byrne



Honorable Mentions
Taste Buds of Children and Mock Adults
by Thane Zander
Blueline



We bleed on pavements decorated in childish flowers,
discharge our vehemence in toilet bowls swallowing
large tracts of shit, shyte, shovel it out and spread
onto a garden decorated with summers hues,

placate the dandelion as it swims aloft on wispy winds,
seeking Monarch Butterflies to caress in death throes,
excrete your discontentment on the laps of executives
when the family savings invested in stocks, tumble

like a dryer on spin cycle, the cold cycle reserved
for her husbands dying corduroys, the colour sticking
to off white socks and travel brochures from a back pocket,
ready to fly first class with crumpled shirts and dungarees

wearing thin around the butt, years of sitting at a computer
and conversing to faceless names, except the ones that lie
when they post an avatar of indifference and cheek, swallow
the last Rhubarb sandwich on a plate filled with regret and woes

leftover like a dying man's left testicle after an operation to cure
the cancer of his family passed down to him, his brother long dead
and buried in another garden setting, flowers in pots and agee jars
no lid required, the dried arrangement last longer in summer's sun,

We eat curdled milk, drink dipped honey crusties, pass the jam
so youngun's can leave a bloody trail on the white tablecloth,
and the ants and bees can leave a tell tale sign of their visit,

my wife said she could smell ants,
me; I avoid bees like the plague.



Talking Terror
by Sachi Nag
The Writer's Block



On our way to Fundy City in ten
inches of snow, a familiar cab driver
asked me if I lost anyone in those sixty
hours of Mumbai.

We couldn’t take our eyes off
the Christmas lights, and the carols
on the airwaves, so haunting, we were feeling
kinship in the gravy of victimhood,

when the hardened ice beneath the slush
stunned the front tyres, and we skidded
rear-ending a parked van and spun
over the edge into a pile of snow

from last year. Strangers stopped by
with shovels and hooks, powering us out.
We dusted jackets, shook hands;
restarted, slow, almost like roadkill,

eyes riveted along the routine way -
now as sinuous as a strange
white feathered boa - the cabbie's sure hands
shaking at the wheel.


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Mar 21 09, 07:30
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Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for February 2009
Judge Elena Karina Byrne
Congratulations!


First Place
Mondegreen
by Ray Sweatman
Salty Dreams



We're having a menage a trois on the kitchen table,
the lobster, the light and me, the sun no longer
a voyeur but a live and willing participant.
And I was just saying to the lobster as I stroke
his soft sacrificial flesh with iridescent butter:
'You see it undulating in this bottle? All I got
to do is put a cork on it and it's mine forever.'
But as soon as I try, the bottle spins and I'm
in the closet edging closer and closer to lips
that whisper, 'Make the most of it darling.
Your 7 minutes are almost up.' And sure enough
1978 is 2008 and the gal in the closet is just
another mistake trying to escape, singing
'Excuse me, while I kiss this guy.' Which
I heard as 'Yes I'll marry you and we'll
live happily ever after.' Meanwhile, my
brother storms in the room booming his best
Jersey soul, 'When i find my beautiful red
watch!' He keeps right on looking and singing,
under the bed, in the creases of the couch.
While outside, they're trying to paint
all the yellow school buses red as if time
could be stopped in a brush of inspiration.
And all the signs have been changed to read:
'Other than fish, no pets allowed." When
at the door, it's both Merriam and Webster
come to exchange all the old words which have
lost their meaning for the lanky promise
of brand new ones. 'Instead of love, happiness,
bliss, hope, time, war, death and peace, I think
it's time you try these: pescatarian, norovirus,
mondegreen, prosecco, soju, endamame, dwarf
planet, dirty bomb, wing nut.' 'But I'm still
trying to figure out the old ones.' Merciless,
they leave me to my hot tub, which is starting
to boil like a tourist in a Jimmy Buffet song
who just stepped on a pop tart as I try a few
of those new words on my tongue and the light
cackles like all things that won't be held captive
when a tremendous hand reaches out to grab me
like a hungry Adam longing for a rib in the Sistine
Chapel. 'Endamame! Endamame! ' I shriek…
But there's no one there to hear me
except for the Captain of Noah's Returning
Ark, who looks like a cross between the dwarf
on Fantasy Island and the dude from Love Boat
back from a long journey with solo animals
who lost their mates along the way. Oh and
Ulysses is there too, telling fresh tales
from divorce court. 'What the hell? Did
you think I was gonna wait forever while
you have your fun with Sirens and Cyclops
and whathaveyou!' And he's leading the animals
in a singsong: 'Prosecco and Soju for everyone!'
But I'm beginning to think it's just another stretch
along Giraffe Highway, blue tooths, moon roofs
and long necks lost in their respective mental safaris
straining to see the goldfish in the trees
and hear the muffled shuffle of strange folk
walking crustaceans in the mondegreen horizon.


This month's winners, oddly enough, all have something to do with sound and song and the process of seeing. The subjects travel synaesthetically. The first place winner, "Mondegreen" is a raucous wonderful rant that reads a little like a Philip Levine poem with a Barbara Hamby and Andre Breton flourish: it is a seeming narrative which picks up momentum and makes sudden surrealist lyrical turns as it moves forward "like all things that won't be held captive." It's a wild, dark-humor ride in a rowboat on the ocean with no oars! --Elena Karina Byrne



Second Place
Virginia Sings Back To the Stones In Her Pockets
by Laurie Byro
Desert Moon Review



I must get the details right. How stones warbled
to her from the garden for a fortnight or so. Troublesome,
intrusive, they trilled while she weeded anemones. Beneath
the ease of roots and thrust of new growth, they ingratiated

themselves to her prodding callused fingers. They knew
her sister was the lucky one, the one who skimmed flat-brimmed
lake stones with the children. This one lay on the couch
with her eyelids peeled back, mushroom capped stones rattling

in the crèche of her eye sockets. Stones were faithful
as vowels; they didn’t let her down. Night after night,
her husband begged her to push them back into the gully of silence.
Last night, she overturned another patch of fertile earth, brushing

off the smooth and round. She pictures the summer table noisy
with anemones and her sister’s brood. She is washed out, a little
brown thrush. “Drab hen, frump” her sister will urge her to over
come the day’s exacting brushes. I must get the colors right,

melt down her charms to the bare-bone mauves and ochre.
The stones will do their job shortly. Aggressive reds need to be
given back to the soil—to the bridegroom river. We must empty
out all the flecked mica chips from her pockets, the cloth’s blood
stained lullabies, the stones last sweet songs.


Our second place winner "Virginia Sings Back To The Stones In Her Pockets" reminds us of what Poet Laureate Stanely Kunitz said about poetry being ultimately mythology, creating a self we can bear to live and die with. We then might also find metaphor (whose Latin origin means to carry-over), especially extended metaphor, translating experience to reenact the "last sweet songs" of who we are. In this haunting poem, the odd "details" blur between dream and reality, where stones are "faithful as vowels," in the mouth of the imagination. --Elena Karina Byrne



Third Place
-
by Eric Rhohenstein
criticalpoet.org



This

only matters in that your eyes see it. Others like it don’t exist, are
crumpled in a figurative corner: a paper-moat around a bin. They are
bits of a scene in a lousy movie in which a man courts


It is not a moat, but a ring. . .

his stubborn bit of less-than-genius
as if it were a butterfly worth netting.

(Every x number of pupations, it stands to reason that a creature must
emerge discolored, missing a wing – wholly not itself – as if by mandate:

rise like the cream does! remember what the dream was!

Perhaps in a movie
it would be allowable to consider

the more definite.)

-slit-

I gut it. It bleeds out the bottom.

No. It’s

the phantom wing, rising

Scratch that. Have it

falling where only one person hears it; the
universe expands a bit
/
swallows nothing, this, sound


This third place poem crosses its own tightrope in a "figurative corner" of the mind. It's a compelling example of how art averts its subject matter. The psychology becomes an essential part of the material: as a writer struggles, a metaphysical angel/Gregor Samsa "creature must emerge" and its the unfolding process of discovery, of creation, which involves the maker, the maker standing back watching himself/herself, and the other unseen viewer, in a triad of perception. Yes, this marvelous "universe expands a bit" as we read it. --Elena Karina Byrne


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Apr 4 09, 08:35
Post #3


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for March 2009
Judge Elena Karina Byrne
Congratulations!


First Place
I, Raptor
by Brenda Levy Tate
Pen Shells



You feed me river rocks, oak bark logged with rain,
a braid of fence wire (grandfather-bone-thin), its barbs
worn to knots. For you, I swallow green bottle stems

the sea has thrown up, blond baleen hair, antler points.
My guts bracket your conglomerate: blood iron, hardwood
ash, pith. Keratin dull as barn windows. Fish-scale mica.

These are the last castings of desire, tossed at night like horns
off some buckdevil. A pockled egg rises from stomach to throat.
I wet it with your laugh, one final drink for you, then hack

a hawk-man pellet. Pwckk! Its heavy oval sinks like a cone
into pine needles. I fly light, easy. You make a rare bolus,
my compacted love. What stranger's hand will break you?


This dense, strange persona poem, "I, Raptor," emerges within the language of nature and its almost ancient "pith," so that the words themselves are as physical as the things they name. This reminds me of the painter Giuseppe Arcimboldo hybrid nature-men representing the seasons or Hieronymus Bosch and the dark "conglomerate" collection of dark images which penetrate the psyche. The final surprise line serves the poem well and startles us into a sudden present tense knowledge. --Elena Karina Byrne



Second Place
deliquesce
by Lynze
Salty Dreams



your face warm against the curve
of my neck. a palm, a panic, a circuit
breaker, closing, when we are
the beating of wings in cove. your nude

foot balanced on the rim of metal
outside a door that opens at a word.
the word is look, the door is yes. lips
fold into my heart, a strip mine. the no

that i could not say. powerless
in the wan sun, clouds with fire
inside, mouth on my thigh. your wrist
a river, banking in flight. the creek

in your arm, the water of my body.
the questing banks we follow with
a snorkel, a mask, a school of minnows
that tick frantically. explosion.

the slow melt of snow over crocus --
my eye, falling into yours.


The title "deliquesce" is the verb form of a scientific term for minerals (especially salts) that "have a strong affinity for moisture" so the poem re-enacts an alchemy that transforms this kind of affinity, an intimate experience where language and image fold into one another in a liquid-like solution of surrealistic transference. "Deliquesce" plays on linguistic expectations and delights in a fall-out of images where "the door is a yes," the "yes" that Wallace Stevens once said, "the future world depends," and here, where the very nature of sight is also a process of feeling upon which we depend. --Elena Karina Byrne



Third Place
Double Vision
by Susan B. McDonough
Blueline



"Only after the last tree has been cut down, Only after the last river has been
poisoned, Only after the last fish has been caught, Only then will you find
money cannot be eaten."
~ Cree Prophecy

The forest looks for its branches,
bark removed, smooth edges chase
ridges. Empty air. Stumps settled;
discs waiting on a checker board
asleep on a mossy forest floor.

The river a sleepy serpent: a trail
of exploitation and corruption.
Well wishers float on their backs
fore-cast in a logger's chagrin.
Skeletons lock arms heading beyond
waterfall's roar past a bend
where only mud will swim.

Iridescent fish are slipped inside
already thick pockets. Eyes that can't rest
remain suspended, weighty; a watch hung
from a chain. It tic tocs through the 70's, 80's 90's…
The water continues to rise and fall without
pomp and circumstance until it bleeds opaque;
so thick that we cannot find our feet.


Pollution and deforestation, this poem's overall important theme thickens in our veins where, really "only mud will swim" with Rachel Carson's ghost. The lines "Well-wishers float on their backs/ fore-cast in a logger's chagrin" and "iridescent fish are slipped inside/ already thick pockets," using assonance and internal rhyme, musically target the poem's underlying tone. Image for image, the importance of this geo-political idea successfully veers from didacticism. --Elena Karina Byrne


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post May 6 09, 16:42
Post #4


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for April 2009
Judge Duncan Mercredi
Congratulations!


First Place
Czamy Polewka (Black Soup)
by Emily Brink
The Writers Block



I heard the crack of his boots in the snow.
My heart rabbit-swift because
"No" was under my tongue.
He is a coward blowing his foul kielbasa breath
and weeping to the Beatles.
I knew he would never make a faithful husband.
I watched my mother in the slimness of the dusk
make Black Soup. I watched her chop the duck
and drain
its blood. The blood dripped
into a pan, black as all mortal sin.
Next, chopped plums, like a smashed thumb,
color of the priest's robe on Passion Friday.
A little vinegar and honey together
because every curse contains a blessing.


I especially love the imagery in this piece. My mind attempts to picture the visage of this man but his face keeps changing and I am unable to capture his true face. The memory of the mother also plays into this piece and I am left wondering just what is the author really cooking. Reads beautifully but also leaves one with a sense of danger but not really comprehending what that sense o f doom is and I suspect there is more to this piece. --Duncan Mercredi



Second Place
The Day the Caterpillars Came
by Steve Meador
FreeWrights Peer Review



We lazed on the west bank
of the Auglaize, till days met,
fished, buzzed on warm Blatz
stolen from Treat's garage
and puked foam after inhaling
roll-your-own cigarettes.

We believed Tecumseh, the boy,
had climbed the oaks across the river
and Tecumseh, the man, had commanded
the canopies to silence screams
from settlers slaughtered by his hand.

But the Cats came, 'dozed down the old trees.
Diesel fumes suffocated the excitement
stoked by the "miracle stone"
with its twenty-seven skips, skims and skitters
over water's glycerin surface.

Centuries,
sucked up through roots no
w exposed
to a death dance of sun and air,
awaited rites at a lumber mill.
Columnar trunks that once supported
clouds and stars would relive
as flimsy veneer and spindly table legs.

With nothing to prop it up,
the plum-colored universe met the ground
and morning blues would drop onto the east bank.
We didn't know whether to invoke the name
of Jesus or a Shawnee sachem,
cry out loud to the world,
"Look at the sky!
It is falling."


Why? I'm not entirely sure. I suppose it's the rhythm of the poem. It sings, it lifts, it reaches down and tugs at your soul. The beauty of a place undisturbed for centuries and to suddenly see it's passed ripped out by the roots that leaves one to wonder why "the sky is falling". --Duncan Mercredi



Third Place
A Rush of Clouds
by Laurel K. Dodge
The Writers Block



Night after night, you pry your dog off
your wife then try to mold your body

to hers, never wondering what it must be like
to be that small, to be a whole, contained

world, that, despite your best attempts
to gain entry remains impenetrable.

In the secretive dark, plums fall.
You, who refuse to eat bruised fruit.

You, who cover your ears during thunder
storms. In his dreams, your dog trembles

and growls. Each morning, she looks
into your face as if she was searching

the sky for stars. Each morning, you survey
your perfect little garden as if you were god.

Last night, you paused to look out the window
and saw the moon, obscured then revealed

by a rush of clouds. Your dog digs a hole
under the fence and doesn't come back

when called. You pick up what you view
as ruined fruit. Your wife will eat the windfall.


I'm not sure why I chose this piece, but it touched me. It left me with wanting to know more. What is the story between these (star-crossed lovers, perhaps) individuals that one would want the other to experience the windfall of bruised fruit? So many questions and the piece leaves one's imaginations to seek the truth between the lines. One question, was the dog jealous? --Duncan Mercredi



Honorable Mentions
After AIDS
by Shawn Nacona Stroud
Desert Moon Review



Not even the moon can light
your path tonight, nor the stars
that wince down on you
like eyes behind which
a terrible migraine flexes the brain.
They are the eyes of Gods'
stupidly staring as they have
for centuries—you pay no mind.
You are lost to them in
your death frock:
the whitened skin that settles in,
blooming on you the way a bruise
gradually darkens. The sky too
pales through our window squares,
from pink to blue
just like you. Ferrying
the sounds of birds and cars
into our bedroom where you lie
in a puddle of night sweats.
The sounds of 6:00 a.m. cumulate
as your breath rattles
to a halt. You are
porcelain now; a doll,
hardened all over as you cast
your death-stench about the room.
The cold you give makes a morgue-
slab out of our bed, and issues
from a realm as unattainable as life.


Baseball Season
by Andrew Dufresne
Wild Poetry


A New York Times is the day rolled
under an arm as it begins to rain.
The player catches a baseball to win
the game, celebrates a death.
It's all over. She loves you for who
you are. You don't know it yet
but you are loved by everyone
for dying. There's no other reason.

The story of your life is above the fold.
Column four, next to a coffee stain.
The baseball rises, rises, into the thin
air. Everyone holds, holds, their breath.
It begins. You and her are through.
You take a slow pull on a cigarette
and stare for hours at the sun,
denying. It's baseball season.


Red Romance Dancing
by Allen Fogel
SplashHallPoetry


1

It was a magical night and wondrously strange
Ahead on the path and just in range
Came into view a most stunning vixen
Illuminated by red sky and a moon of crimson.

Approaching her a shift in perception
And to my senses a major deception
For in front of me did tread
A most enchanting woman, dressed in red.

To her an attraction so strong and fierce
That surely without her, my heart would pierce
If to this apparition I could not talk
Then this would be my very last walk.

As my lustful desires and fate, I desperately pondered
What appeared to be a magical archway, I wondered
Materialized ahead of me and came into soft focus
A mystical ruby red structure of converging fixed locus.

All around the pink night light was enveloping
And in the arch was slowly developing
A fuzzy image of beckoning bright red
Through which swiftly, we must surely tread.

Finding courage from where I know not
To her I admitted: "With you I'm besot
Hold my hand and with me march
And come with me through this magical arch."

Eye to eye and hand in hand
Euphoric feelings unbelievably grand
To the arch I led
My mysterious woman in red.

2

Apparating with a small boom
We found ourselves in a magic ballroom
With red lighting and an enchanted ceiling
Looking up, crimson moon, most appealing.

With me now my nubile maid
For with me she had stayed
But her red dress above her rump
For some peculiar reason, had done a bunk.

As I gazed upon her form
I foresaw the coming of a storm
As if the gods were setting most pernicious tests
To me were revealed her magnificent breasts.

Maestro waved, orchestra played, the music cast its spell
Romance grew, excitement built, some energy to expel
Thigh to thigh, chest to breast, side by side we danced
Round and round, back and forth, totally entranced.

A dancing nymph of such angelic grace
It was quite a challenge to keep up with her pace
With all the moving, swaying, gyrating and prancing
There could be no doubt she was red romance dancing.

Adrenaline rushing, hormones raging, coming morning,
In lust and for each other fawning
Looking for another place, with great haste
For time together we could not waste

In the corner as if on command
An arch appeared to the side of the band.
Pushing each other on the wazoo
Sprinting to the arch we flew.

3

Apparating again, together we did clamber
Into a magnificent and great chamber
A thousand burning red candles placed in the room
And in the enchanted ceiling, a crimson moon.

In the red glow in the corner recessed
A scented bathtub for us to be de-stressed.
In another recess lay a king size bed
Dressed with the most exotic linens, all in red.

Nearby to satiate a desire
Were all kinds of fruits placed to inspire.
Strawberries, bananas, and lots of whipped cream
For whatever hunger we might dream.

All day and all of the night
Imagine the happenings as hard as you might
No matter what things you might wish to sight
I will not tell you, her virtue to keep tight
For the reputation of my lovely lady, I will not slight.
For that, my friends, would not be right.


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Jun 7 09, 16:21
Post #5


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for May 2009
Judge Duncan Mercredi
Congratulations!


First Place
Mariposa
by Tim Blighton
Desert Moon Review



for Karen

1.
What can I do? My fingertips have rope burns,
but the sky has been quiet for days. Nightly,
I roam a sea of barstools with nothing more
than shot glasses for ballast, while all doors exit

into a spinning compass of neon stars
and vomit. Sometimes, the difference
between coursing the tradewinds or drifting alone
is an unspoken lie between strangers.

2.
The eye accepts all it can: the glare
of snow, the black of velvet
in a ring case, or the old note
on a steamy mirror. Without light

we would have less to presume. We
might accept our accidents and causality
as reminders that we can’t always
see where we’re going.

3.
The moon is a busker, borrowing as it travels.
I contemplate light refracting in the empty
glass in front of me. The bartender leaves
the bottle; from the counter, it is fluorescent.

4.
You find me in a mouth of sediment, worn
by the sun’s returning tides. Your hair is hemp
woven with lilacs and anchored
to your prayer beads, dangling between

us. I sink, unable to decide. Your hands
open into a butterfly (mariposa you say).
The narrow alleys flood with snow-melt. Your smile,
angular and nomadic, is cast

into the busy streets as you turn. Let me release
your hair and draw it close; let me set sail.


"I roam a sea of barstools with nothing more than shot glasses for ballast, while all doors exit into a compass of neon stars and vomit." The above line by itself says it all. I have been there, I have sat next to this writer in every seedy bar, in every dive and have met all those night time companions that he hints have accompanied him on that great journey into the darkest recesses of humanity. Yet somehow he finds a beauty in this place and I too have found that same peace with these strangers. He just says it better than I could though I have tried." --Duncan Mercredi



Second Place
Evidence Hanging on a Rusty Nail
by Brian J. Mackay
Moontown Cafe



I found your old football boots this morning;
they were hanging on a rusty nail in the shed
next to my spare salmon fly rod.
Cobwebs stretched from lace to lace
and trailed from rubber studs like filigree.

You stored your trophies in a stained tea chest,
so I searched for evidence of silver laurels.
Each medal had a photograph for a partner;
black and white smiles from young boys,
all victorious, all proud of their triumphs.

The shed was dressed in dust and memorabilia;
shirts and socks and shorts, tiny rags for grimy
windows. Its boards were rotting and hinges
collapsing through years of careless abandonment
and sadness. I knew you couldn’t take me, brother.

I held your old football boots this morning,
they were where you always left them.
I’m going to polish them today, or tomorrow;
but now, I stroke the fifty franc statue you bought
in Lourdes, and rest my brow on your blue pillows.


"How many times as one dug out old photographs and recalls days of laughter and tears? Well words can do the same, "each medal had a photograph for a partner" each line bringing with it a sense of loss, a feeling of sadness. Then another line, " I held your old football boots this morning, they were there where you always left them" and a smile forms recalling happier days. There is sadness here, some tears and hope, hope that somehow dressing up the old boots will bring a sense of closure." --Duncan Mercredi



Third Place
The Marsh at Dusk
by Steve Meador
FreeWrights Peer Review



I enter the marsh
with a rabbit’s foot,
a four leaf clover
and knowledge that evening
arrives from the west.
When the sun rests on the tallest reeds
I turn and carry it on my back.
My senses, stropped by adrenaline,
will lead me to the fleece of safety.
I taste thunder before it coagulates,
smell rain as it gathers in clouds.
A moccasin’s yawn rivals the bellow
of a fire-breathing bull. Gurgling,
from a gator’s nostrils, magnifies through
valleys of cattail stems, reaches my ears
as harpie screams. If scraping happens
along tectonic plates, I will feel it.
Every splash and swish of the paddle
whips up a tornadic whirlpool.
Dusk evaporates. Fear bubbles
like magma, hardens in my kayak’s wake.
Once the plane to open water is broken
I turn the bow toward the sulfurous
throat that wants to swallow me
and laugh, like an Argonaut come home.


"Coming from a small northern village before the advent of modern conveniences, a line such as " when the sun rests on the tallest reeds, I turn and carry it on my back" resonates within me and I remember walking in the reeds as a child seeing only the sun and sky above me. This work stirs those feelings and I travel back to those innocent times and that magnificent gift we've been given, imagination." --Duncan Mercredi



Honorable Mentions
Dad Never Read Novels
by Christopher T. George
FreeWrights Peer Review



He was more of a Newsweek,
Huntley-Brinkley-Cronkite man,
but before he died when ill he read
steamy big gamehunter type novels,
on the scent of rhino and cougar.

Dad would rage about the plots
just like he’d rage at the news and
the folk who “climb on the taxpayer’s
back.” I found a couple of saucy
paperbacks hidden in his closet,
checked the well-thumbed bits.

He read my would-be novel,
offered persnickety edits,
always missed the big picture,
complained that I was being mildly
porno (tho’ it was more pun-
ography). He had begun life as

an English socialist, grousing
about Harold Macmillan and
people who “never had it so good.”
Argued about America’s need for
socialized medicine. But latterly

he’d developed a passion for
talk radio. I feel certain
he’d long forgotten Labour.
I have the notion that today
he’d love Rush Limbaugh.



The absence of spaces between words
by Alexandre Nodopaka
Pen Shells


Trying to sustain my carnal hunger
from your single line response
I wrung myrrh and frankincense
from every letter of each word.

And when those exhausted
I darted my tongue on the punctuation
and like a chameleon I snatched
the single period ending your sentence.

All that did was water my mouth
inviting me to latch onto the spaces
separating your words and while trying
to reunite them by licking off the voids

I constructed an uninterrupted phrase
further enhanced by connecting with a twist
the ending to its beginning thus forming
a Mobius I entered skillfully its infinity.



Her obituary picture will look nothing like her
by Alex Stolis
Wild Poetry Forum


the children will say it’s because she likes to talk
about hearts, their shape and texture, how they are
simple but never quite within reach. Her hands
are unsettling, she is aware of her mouth, aware
that everyone expects sadness and when the clock
strikes the hour it brings with it the sound of a train,
the feeling of dust and the sweet taste of his sweat.
She was eighteen, refused to be contained, he knew
how even a thin veneer of pride could shatter a man
in two; being lost together didn’t feel out of place.
Sometimes, when he was sound asleep she would
watch him breathe, imagine they were on an ocean
liner traveling to Europe, illicit lovers running away
from long-established conventions, breaking their
own rules because they could. There were gravel
roads and cotton dresses, long-neck beers and no
need for second chances and on clear summer days
she swore she could see all the time in the world
glisten in the corner of his eye.


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Jul 6 09, 17:42
Post #6


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for June 2009
Judge Duncan Mercredi
Congratulations!


First Place
you think you’ve seen everything
by Justin Hyde
Salty Dreams




silver-dollar eyed
guy in the corner
of the flying-j
talking gibberish
loudly
to himself.

that’s nothing
we’ve all
seen it.

but still

after pissing
you ask the waitress
if he’s alright.

he’s a regular,
she says.
a Vietnam
vet.

that makes sense.
you go back to
reading a little
sartre.

he jumps out of his
booth.

starts doing the
twist.

6′3
250 pound
bear of a man

grinding it out
like a
motherfucker.

smiling from
one end of the room
to the other

belting out chubby checker
so loud
it’s vibrating your
ribcage from
seven booths over.

he comes toward
your booth.

motions for you to
get up and dance.

it’s not fear
and it’s not
pity.

you don’t
exactly know
what the hell
is going on.

but
you do it.



"We've all been there, as an observer or the observed, minding our own, speaking to ghosts or the gods in our own private place. Then someone intrudes, just to peek inside your mind, seeking the message you have hidden within you. Time to time, they'll let you in but there's always a price to pay isn't there? Excellent piece of writing with a surprise "twist" at the end." --Duncan Mercredi



Second Place
Castle Hawk
by Brian Edwards
The Poets' Graves



“And from our opposite continents we wave and call.
Everything has happened.” —– Sylvia Plath, “The Babysitters”


Over a decade since we played at Castle Hawk.
Rain lashed down all day, from tee to bunker
to nineteenth hole
But we wore tee-shirts and hauled those clubs round
where we didn’t belong.
Watching the tweed and stripes, your eye for mischief
broke the clouds.
Cruel brother, you could skin fish with that tongue.
In jeans at the oak-beamed clubhouse bar
too short, too loud,
You filled the room.

Drinking drinking, a one bedroom flat, football on the radio,
Nietzsche on our minds.
You couldn’t cook but your cupboards always offered
A sandwich, an orange, a place to hide from lovers and life.
Windows open wide to rile the curtain twitchers next door,
beating walls down with disapproval,
And when the police came you were first outside fighting
truncheons with common sense,
And when your love-heart tattoo came out like a tomato
you gave it a nickname, wore short sleeves for a year,
And when you woke up in the wrong bed swearing
never again, never again,
It was just a story to tell.

My brother, before I left you at the nighteenth hole
with a bourbon and coke and a bar tab,
Before I traded you in for a continent and a collection
of books,
Before divorce scrawled your lipsticked name
on a mirror,
Before divorce put a fist through your glass
chest,
Before divorce poked vipers through the window
of your skull,
Before divorce put your liver in a glass, covered
in weeds,
Before you tried to cut off your arm,
tried to eat off that one word,
her name, five letters, ingrowing,
We were two brothers in tee-shirts,
waiting for something to happen.



"What can I say, I have a weakness with anything to do with golf and family. But truth be told, I'm not a golfer, but I go golfing. It's you against the course and in some cases against your brother, that never ending battle on who's the best. But underlying is the love you feel for him, the battles, the pain, the tears, the laughter, it's all here. I identify with the wild one, the one that refused to back down forcing the quiet brother to come out of his shell and join me on this fantastic journey that is life. Golf, beer, (in my case, never did acquire a taste for hard liquor) and in my much younger days, some green to smoke. This piece has all this and more. It struck a chord and I kept returning to it even after I put it aside, a sign of good work." --Duncan Mercredi



Third Place
5 o’clock
by Divina
Pen Shells



There is much to observe
when days are nights
and philosophical conversations
turn to games, a rekindled fire
in the midst of summer silences.
Life is a childhood
of perpetual humming,
a birdsong, romantic sounds,
a vastness.
I come up with the idea
to paint experience
as something tangible,
cobwebs around the corners,
a shadow, another time, place,
excited heartbeats,
a post-impressionist garden.
Frustration/conversation;
wails/tales; low/shadow;
farewell/shell–a violent urge
to rhyme the scenes.


"I've always been of the belief that poets are deep down, frustrated visual artists, knowing their talent for creating beauty with paint is elementary at least. So, instead of an artist's paint brush, we use words to create works of art, letting the imagination of the reader fill in the picture with color. In this piece, I see shades of gray, black, blue and red, with hints of yellow for contrast. It's a beautiful painting." --Duncan Mercredi



Honorable Mentions
The Sweat Lodge, As I Know It

by Steve Meador
FreeWrights Peer Review


My tub is aligned east-west,
this is vital to my health.
When the world turns to shit
my bones quiver, try to shoot
through braided muscle and skin;
my synapses won’t pop and snap
and my mind needs a meeting
of its minds. I draw the hottest
water a human can survive,
without turning edible, and step
into the tub from the east. I sprinkle
salts on my shoulders, inhale steam
that carries the dream of sweetgrass,
chant meaningless sounds. I build
a scarecrow inside myself, ravens
and sparrows flee my body. Circling
buzzards disappear. Hawks pluck
snakes from my ears. I push out sweat
until emptiness fills my pores, then exit
from the west side of the tub.
In the mirror fog there is a man
the color of red clay, a warrior,
my grandmother mentioned him;
he was her grandfather.


Angling
by Allen M. Weber
FreeWrights Peer Review


Blessed with ordinary sight, I don’t need
an embellished explanation of sky.
I can see there are clouds, or there are none.
True, some firmament—bottomless-blue,

cerulean—defies description; so
humbled I’ll lower my gaze, and notice
how surfaces mimic: Iridescent
dragons loop around my 1 lb line—pulled

taut through watery cumuli. I float
my ordinary oars away, obliged
to drift more muted hues, and wait
for something deeper to strike.



The Big Easy
by Bernard Hamel
About Poetry Forum


I want easy afternoons, lazy love and white sleep…

slipping possible words in liquid sheets
and the four corners of the death dance…

and dry… dryness everywhere…

I want the walls to rain
and the floor too hot for my feet…

the laughter of smoke rings and pillows for breakfast…

vertical smiles upon purple hours…
as the blindman of time winds the clock like a compass…

I want a tongue that bites!
like a razor of the first shave…

simplicity like the
b
i
n
d
i
n
g of a book.

chances cloudy…
mean sky: knit brows & puffy cheeks…

I think I’ll wait
for sudden nights

and open sidewalks…

until…

the sun hustles the moon
.and people walk
backwards


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Aug 12 09, 15:15
Post #7


Mosaic Master
Group Icon

Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Oh WOW! PartyFavor.gif Balloons.gif

Even though I'm on vacation this week and not at the computer much, I just got the news that both Sylvia and Marc have placed HM's in the July competition for "Bereavement" and At a Mall in Bangkok" respectively.

Fantastic. Stay tuned for all the results as soon as I can find some time to post them - not much access to the PC this week...

Congrats again!!
Lori cheer.gif champagne.gif rose.gif


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Peterpan
post Aug 13 09, 09:01
Post #8


Creative Chieftain
*****

Group: Gold Member
Posts: 1,621
Joined: 18-August 05
From: Johannesburg, South Africa
Member No.: 127
Real Name: Beverleigh Gail Annegarn
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Jox





Congratulations Honourable Mentions!!!!! Marc and Syl! GREAT news.

Bev


·······IPB·······

May the angels guide your light.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Aug 17 09, 19:14
Post #9


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for July 2009
Judge George Szirtes
Congratulations!


First Place
The Day the Egrets Came Calling
by Christopher T. George
The Writer's Block



As ever I sought a glimpse of the blue herons nesting
in the woods east of the Anacostia River as my train
drove into D.C., but today there were three white

egrets heads bent among the roosting herons. Or perhaps
they were snowy herons. Do snowies associate with blues?
White-robed Holy Men! Prophets! The Dead! The Wise,

perhaps the spirit of my late Father. Don’t laugh. Wipe
that smile off your face. Wipe that face off your face.
I may be wrong, but I’d be wrong to express no regrets.

Father, forgive me for my neglect of my aging Mother,
your widow. You died far too young, in your sixties,
and I am sixty-one now. O, cruel world, embrace us

with your savagery! Sweet Embraceable You — Life!
How I loathe you for the pain you deal me but I need you.
I saw a blood red-leaf on an ornamental pear tree

at New Carrollton Station in dark green foliage,
the same tree clothed in white blossom weeks ago.
One spot of blood. Oh, Savior! Be the saving of me.

" 'The Day the Egrets Came Calling' takes even more risks than "Bereavement" does. And they are very big risks. The list of apostrophised figures in line 6. The use of "O, cruel world" and "Sweet Embraceable You". And that last line that could have sprung out of Herbert or Hopkins. I was fascinated by a poem so balanced on a knife edge. If it held the balance it was terrific. If it did not, it fell into bathos. I didn't think it was bathetic at the end. There is something terrific and edgy about it." --George Szirtes



Second Place (tie)
Nothing to Discuss
by Guy Kettelhack
About Poetry Forum



Dying people
sleep a lot.
In a way
it’s a relief. Death
sneaks in like
an incremental
thief, idly filches –

here a tittle –
there a jot – until
the scaffolding
that holds
life up cannot.
Fundaments
erode. Slowly,

as you sit there
watching core
and carapace
implode, you find
you’re glad
you aren’t made
to talk about it.

Babies sleep
a lot as well,
and so does
every cat.
Perhaps there’s
an analogy
in that. But

thinking at
this bedside,
now, feels like
unnecessary fuss.
There’s really
nothing
to discuss.


" 'Nothing to Discuss' seems plain to the point of bluntness at first. It sets out that way, determined to reject the fancy, but under cover it is building up a hoard of internal rhymes that act cumulatively so that when you come to the "fuss / discuss" end rhyme it hits you hard. Returning to the beginning from there helps appreciate the use of the scaffolding metaphor that mounts through two verses, before switching to the analogies of babies and cats. Poetry competitions are not necessarily the best way of judging poets or poetics: the simple straight stand-up poem that holds space with a certain clarity tends to make a strong impression. I liked the way the poem moved into that space." --George Szirtes



Second Place (tie)
I am Dying Afghanistan
by Bernard Henrie
The Writer's Block



On Venice Beach, California. The tissue thin letter
of my father brings the hushed news: another school
blown-up and a hellfire drone takes a wedding party
for a terrorist cell.

I am aging and unemployed. Nobody understands
me in my first two languages. And what of it? 20 years
of war, 20 years of war.

A dog in a yellow jacket barks, a spray of saliva
opens on the air like smoke from a white cigarette,
a silver polyethylene bag for his shit.

The boardwalk skaters are oiled like Greek wrestlers.
Back home, the Taliban would shoot them for target
practice.

My father desires electricity and windows strong enough
to stop the whistling, hollow point bullet.

Bathers dip in the tepid waves. A beached monster
wreathed with drying ringlets of salt water stares
with one dead eye. His swollen black hump and slack
mouth opens and closes like a Japanese parasol.


" 'I am Dying Afghanistan' selects its material with real sharpness and ends superbly with the Japanese parasol. I admired the ambition, the level of complexity in the feeling. I wasn't quite sure whether the first verse was necessary or useful. Maybe it is a bit too explanatory, a bit too prosaically informative. The directness at the beginning of the second verse is excellent and takes us straight in. The Greek wrestlers are excellent too." --George Szirtes



Honorable Mentions

At a Mall in Bangkok

by Marc-André Germain
Mosaic Musings cheer.gif Congrats Marc !!!


(Based on Allen Ginsberg’s “A Supermarket in California”)

What fancy I entertain of you tonight, Nan, for I rummaged through swarming sidewalks under rose and azure neons with a heartache, ever sentient, scanning the dim sum shops.
In my desolation, and shopping for memories, I investigated unfashionable malls, dreaming of your lamentations.
What mobile phones and what umbrellas! Clans of friends shopping at night! Boys between the skirt racks, misses in the arcade! — and you, Mr. Director, what were you doing down by the pawn shop?
I saw you, Nan, alone, alluring crestfallen mistress, sauntering among the trinket vendors and eyeing the foreigners walking by.
I heard you address each one of them: Hey you! Where you go? Where you from? Do you speak Thai? Do you have girlfriend?
I carved my way through flashy stacks of bags and shoes stalking you, and stalked in turn in my imagination by an immigration officer.
We traipsed around the subway station together in our solitude and fancies tasting plum puddings, possessing a specimen of every accessible sweet, and never entering the station.

Where are we going, Nan? The station closes in half-an-hour. Which way do your glass shoes point tonight?
(I reach for your photo, the one you gave me not so long ago, and feel both guilty and liable…)
Will we ramble all night through noisy and noisome streets? Placards adding noise to noise, lights out in the shops and flats, we’ll both feel lonely.

Will we meander dreaming of a perfect love and a perfect future past the driveways of family duplexes?
You knew that I could never provide that for you, and catching my reflection in a scooter mirror, now I can own that too. Long after you will have moved into these quarters, I’ll be traipsing around the subway station, a ghost of you followed by a ghost of me.


" 'At a Mall in Bangkok' is, as it says, based on Ginsberg, but it does a delicious and convincing job, better than pastiche and perfectly appropriate. Aurally it has plenty of variety and authority. I liked it very much. I didn't think it would quite win because of that single direct obvious debt to its avowed model, but there is a real gift here, a breadth that could go its own way." --George Szirtes


Bereavement
by Sylvia Evelyn Maclagan
Mosaic Musings cheer.gif Congrats Sylvia !!!


I’m used to loss itself;
it’s trivial things that smart, wear out my heart:
orphaned mug on kitchen shelf,
terrace table grown too long,
and by its side a wooden chair, vacant.
Without end, they caution strong,
shadowing me in endless pageant.

I disregard remorse for churlish word,
fixed angry looks… Oh misplaced books!
Or grief for tenderness demurred
through life’s uncertain lane.
It’s the scrutiny of minor things in winter
depths, an enduring bane
by which my heart grows fainter.


" 'Bereavement' is subtly song-like, the register just off centre ("Without end, they caution strong"), attractively so, I thought. A ruffled surface may indicate more underwater activity. I wondered how to read "Oh misplaced books!" - how straight, how far a conscious gesture. The lines afterwards suggested it was straight. As straight rhetoric the last five lines were maybe just a touch overwrought. But the ear for phrase was impressive and the first verse very promising. How to balance inflation with deflation? Hard to know." --George Szirtes


Der Busant
by Laurie Byro
Desert Moon Review


Like a medieval clock, two figures round and round,
cuckoos echo our goodbyes in France. We are giddy
with champagne, playing at quintain, a barge waits

like a giant dragonfly with us as its glistening tail.
Again, back to those smiling angels with their wings
pinned up against church stones. We pass bricked-in

secrets, shaggy soot in chimneys that whisper
confidences. Somewhere close, a witch stirs her kettle
of pointing fingers. This time, I assume the role

of Princess and not the scullery maid. We lie next
to one another, my shift falling to the ground like white
petals. A hawk steals my shimmering gold ring

with every precious word in his mouth—love that moves
the sun and countryside below his wings. Lying next
to you, our bones settling like snow in a barren field

in the North—England or France or some other
fairytale. We are a forest falling into madness, all
the places we have left behind, the places we are lost in.


" 'Der Busant' I took to be an account of an episode in a relationship. There are lovely lines of imagery there: "a barge waits / like a giant dragonfly with us as its glistening tail" and "our bones settling like snow in a barren field". And there was that "forest falling into madness". I had this as my favourite for a while. If it didn't quite stay that was only because its assemblage of properties felt a little tidy. Not quite enough of the forest falling into madness. That is entirely a matter of taste, of course. I do think this is a very gifted writer, who given something a bit more ragged, would rise to the occasion. I wanted the poem a touch more dishevelled." --George Szirtes


Old Women Farming Rice
by Brian Edwards
The Poets' Graves


I.
You want to sketch them as birds, storks perhaps, or origami cranes, speechless and hungry, wrestling stubborn ears from shoots. You want them bent by the weight of history, and these fields to be the pages of their lives, their children’s lives and their children’s children’s lives. Bowed by every failed harvest and centuries of typhoons and foreign invaders bringing noise.

II.
You believe
an ideology in purple robes
raped these fields of men
dressed them in heavy cloth dressed them with guns
ordered them to kill
pointing everywhere.

You believe
a philosophy in pinstripes
stole the future of these fields
dressed the men in sweatshop suits
gave them comic books taught them how to steal
pointing everywhere.

You want these women
to be written on the landscape
forced into a right-angled existence
held down by Yasukuni and Zainichi
held down by Hiroshima and Nanking
held down by doutaku bells struck 100 times and more
held down by a hand on the nape.

Burn the flag! you cry.
Storm the Temples!

You wear these women on T-shirts.

III.
And then you walk with them
crouch and push seedlings into mud
feel translucent skin on yours
hear laughter spill from toothless faces
laughter born deep in the gut
laughter at once ancient and coruscant.
Bakayaro!
they mock
before they teach you how to snap your wrists
and fill the sky with clouds of pure white chaffs
moved by the wind to where steel prisons pass—
curious faces pressed against the glass.


" 'Old Women Farming Rice' says what needs to be said and ends strongly with those faces pressed against glass. "You wear these women on T-shirts" is very strong. It is just that I think it is slightly overfurnished, that it might be better more compressed. The first verse of part III for example is more insistent than it needs to be. I think we know and feel that already." --George Szirtes


Offertory Red
by Richard Stillman
The Poets' Graves


‘This wine was born the same year as me,’
he blushed. ‘I like to think the same day.
Chateau Ausone Bordeaux, eighty-two,
Although, of course, it’s many years in the making,
but then again, that’s rather like me too!’

One sip of ruby gave me sweet fruit
and black tea. It whispered love to me.
‘How about that for a finish?’ he kissed the air.
‘How about that for a start?’ I waved my glass.
He smiled, refilled my bowl, refilled his own.

‘How many glasses to the bottle, do you think?’
he asked as we held each stained glass in worship
‘The way you pour, maybe four,’ I guessed.
‘Well how many sips per glass is that?’
‘Maybe ten?’ ‘So forty in all, let’s say.’

‘Sure,’ I shushed, mindful of where the sum
was heading but living in this blissful wine
which made the way I drink anew; it was
the sun reborn. ‘So, forty sips,’ he went on,
‘That’s twenty-five pounds a sip. Enjoy, my friend!’

I knew then how his palate had been formed;
he hadn’t aged that well. I rose, ‘Excuse me,
I have to piss away five hundred pounds.’
He smiled at my poor joke, but wouldn’t take
another sip until I had resumed my place.

" 'Offertory Red' is damned elegant, like a perfect anecdotal short story. Reading it is like handling a piece of material from a well-stocked wardrobe. It is an admirable poem, a light close-to-satirical poem with satirical bite. It's a nice poem to have about your person somewhere and read with a cocktail in a bar. Which is something that one does want occasionally to do. It is, as I say, admirable and I admire it. I would certainly read a book by this writer." --George Szirtes


on phil jackson’s tenth championship
by Jonathan Muggleston
The Town


the June air is so perfect
i feel like a spider crawling

up the featureless smoothness
of the ceramic sink until some huge,
barely perceptible form throws
a shadow across the smooth expanse
of white and the water comes
pouring from the sky,
wiping the white world clean

of my insouciance, the imposition
of my imperfection onto
this pristine arctic field

that’s what treeflowers do to me
in your absence, the violence
of the blooming cacophony,
flowers’ slow motion sex

in the air we breathe,
plants’ transcendence
into the June night sky

the night breeze is cooler
where you are, and not so floral
but salt-tanged, rougher
from constant contact with
beach sand and splintery boardwalk

and the belt tightens
around my heart as the surf
speaks and speaks, untongued,
senseless, unyielding, filling the air
with permanent wordless speech
the babble of an idiot
immortal, demented, a tortured god

unkillable, unsilenceable

that’s what the perfect June air
does to me, though i seek
sanctuary in the loud silence
of the bar, the bottle,
some fucking basketball game,
that’s what the treeflowers

do to me these days.


" 'on phil jackson's tenth championship' comes at you with its firmly uncapitalised title and lines. It is a declaration of some sort, something about having nothing to do with 'poetic' trappings or emotions, but being after something more ephemeral, like life itself. But, like "Offertory Red," albeit in a different way, it is a damned elegant piece of writing, the diction precise, aesthetic with just a slight curl in its lip. Like "Offertory Red" it establishes persona as voice and carries that voice through its shifting imagery. It moves to the point when it talks about "my heart" and then develops into more personal romantic territory with "babble of an idiot" and that "fucking basketball game". I had this poem on top of the pile for some time because I liked its atittude and the way it moved through the first half particularly. I was less sure about the second where some kind of backstory was becoming too important. The guy was in a mood about something but he wasn't saying what. While it was just the voice I was with the poem. Once there was a story and a cause it lost me a little." --George Szirtes


The Rebuttal
by Sachi Nag
The Writer's Block


An actor is charged with raping the house maid.

His wife expresses undiminished love.
Her voice cuts through the disquiet, disgust.
She extols his virtues as a father: ask my kids! Law
is not a river. Virtue is no inheritance. There is fairness.
The night is just, despite the voyeurs;
vultures don’t scare angels paused for breath.

What do we know of lust?
Of revenge, retribution, greed?
Why should we pick nits between force and will?
Who can claim to know what ever is real?

Retreating into quarantine, she turns on the shower.

Water whistles down her forehead in a red stream,
she mistakes for an untimely period
but it’s just broken vermilion. She scrubs hard,
the red stains are washed, the vacant scalp
between her parted hair is deep scarred,
shiny and redolent of lavender.


" 'The Rebuttal' is much more straightforward. It is an anecdote with potential for fable. The story as story is powerful. I just wondered whether the ending lay a little too pat, a little too willed. The writing is direct at the beginning moving to rhetorical questions in the middle. I thought the writing very good, the questions for real and was looking for a sufficiently complex albeit incomplete answer. The end closure here doesn't quite do it for me." --George Szirtes


Stephanie
by Kathleen Vibbert
Wild Poetry Forum


Stephanie came to live with us from Yugoslavia.
She had small shoulders, a nervous laugh,
and the half-moons of her fingernails were egg white.

She described her late mother as a winter tree,
her father’s senility between King and drifter.
Quiet. When I first heard her voice I asked

what she aspired to. A chef, she replied.
Olives. The sleep of marinade.
Cutting limes, selecting blackberries as if they were a song,
dropping chocolate centers onto sheets of cut rite.

She brings sweet weather and rest.
Elegance, for the way she carries the spice trays to the table,
breathing deeply as the bread rises,
weary toward evening near an open window.


" 'Stephanie,' like a number of other poems uses the first line to set up the situation. I am not sure that is necessary in this case or indeed in some of the others. Entering in medias res is generally good advice. The end is beautiful and not over-resolved. The second verse is nicely enigmatic. The third maybe a touch over-explicit but still under control. Maybe at the very end, as with "The Rebuttal," I feel the poem is too much resolved in the writer's mind before the poem actually starts. It's a nuisance 'having something to say'. It's always better to discover what one might have to say." --George Szirtes


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Sep 12 09, 18:36
Post #10


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for August 2009
Judge George Szirtes
Congratulations!


First Place
Smoke and Mirrors
by Antonia Clark
The Waters



My sister dressed in the colors of water
and stone, walked out on foggy mornings
in search of misted rivers,
folded herself into low-lying clouds.

She insisted that none of this
was for the purpose of deception.
It’s a matter of becoming

accustomed, she said. It’s incremental.

She studied the art of graceful sleight:
To take her leave without notice, without
a visible stirring of air, as if dying
were only another illusion.

The hard part is what to do with the body,
she told me. The rest is nothing.
It’s easy to disappear.


"The first verse immediately grabs the reader with a clear image that has potential for transformation. We read on seeing where it might lead. The combined effect of water, stone, fog, mist, river make the point at which the sister folds herself into low-lying clouds natural. We accept 'folded herself'' as the natural product of all the factors. At this stage the poem is rich but could end up merely pretty. Then the vocabulary hardens - insisted, deception, incremental - and we feel we may be moving to another level of meaning. These are hard business terms . A transaction of some sort is hinted at. The quatrain beginning 'She studied' moves us into ambiguous territory. We are uncertain whether her folding is about death or a kind of avoidance. Now there is a sense of haunting. The balance is never completely resolved though the language is firmly declarative.=2 0In the end we feel we have approached a difficult subject - indeed a difficult person - with a proper respect. A good poem can feel as if a ghost as passed through us. It doesn't need atmospheric effects. Nothing has been intentionally hidden. Another way to think of it might be like treading on ice, testing each step as you go. That is what this poem does." --George Szirtes



Second Place (tie)
Doris Gray pictures regret
by Jennifer Bennett
conjunction



the old woman has a
guilt edged
box on the wall
and in it sit her
confessions
two buttons
and she cuts through the wrists of
the doll her mother made for her sister
removing the buttons imbued
with a glistening green hate
with the wish it was her sister’s hands she had hacked off
with those sweet little scissors
in the shape of a heron
the shell that looks like a shoe
takes her walking the isthmus
where they said you would find nothing
grow nothing
leave nothing but footprints
and there it was
hard as love
a matchbox boat her daughter made her
so many years ago
before floating away
on a sea of years
wet with neglect
that tower of torn letters
small dried flowers
mothballs
dust
dust
dust


"An interesting poem from the narrative point of view, moving through stages, developing rhetoric as it goes through its sinister twists and turns to great effect. There may be a difficulty in 'telling a story' that so clearly has a context outside the poem since poems generally have to be their own complete worlds. The emotional intensity of the last three lines must be coming from somewhere, presumably from the cutting of the wrists of the doll and that 'green hate'. The appearance of a they and a you in the middle - they disappear again - is a little disorientating. There is a really interesting question here regarding the world and the poem since, clearly, poems are set in the world and cannot be entirely self-referencing, but there must, I suspect, be a negotiation with that world within the terms of the poem. This feels a little like a dramatic speech from something longer. It would help me - my ignorance - to know who Doris Gray was." --George Szirtes



Second Place (tie)
Migrations
by Billy Howell-Sinnard
The Writer's Block



I roast words
over the fire,
warm my feet,

soles to flames,
get down to hear
the earth breathe.

You drink
cowboy coffee
late, the mug

warming fingers,
feel the moon
close to your face.

I can’t stop laughing
until I cry and
don’t know why.

Your body rises
in the sleeping bag.
The moon settles

in the trees, a great
white bird migrating
horizon to horizon.


"Splendid last image on which a great deal depends. I am not sure what to do with the intensity of emotion in verse 5, or why the words are being roasted in line 1. I don't mean I cannot guess, it's just that the emotions seem to be generated from outside the poem and that can make the reader feel like an intruder on the I and you. And I cannot feel too secure in my guess. I am left looking over my shoulder in case I have missed something. I like everything in this poem, particularly the end. Maybe I just want a little more context for the feeling. It is a very difficult issue because indicating that context is not the same as explaining20it. Maybe one more verse of three lines, somewhere near the beginning would do it." --George Szirtes



Second Place (tie)
Toad Festival
by Connie DeDona
Blueline



Night falls and the air is stagnant and sticky
with white gardenia,
stephanotis and pungent citronella.
A fountain sprays into a koi pond
and echoes across the valley.
In the distance are the sounds
of after dinner dishes being soaped, rinsed and towel dried.
Television sets glowing and humming with families
settling into “The Biggest Loser” and “Howie Do It”.
At the appointed hour
a silent Bufo Army advances,
each to their own predetermined spot.
Out on a lonely stretch of road
beneath the glow of a street lamp,
hungry eyes examine the night sky,
patiently waiting beneath the bug lights by the well,
or in the hollow of a palm tree,
compelled to perform their part in the nightly ritual.
Sometimes in witless surrender squashed beneath an automobile tire.
Trancelike, as thousands of wings float aimlessly down all around them,
relieved of their former frames.
While listening overhead to the snap and sizzle,
of a multitude of tiny bodies being roasted to perfection,
their tongues salivating as their dinner drops and is swallowed whole.
The Formosan termite swarm is timely on their kamikaze mission,
blindly buzzing their dinner dates in reckless abandon.
A wretched few manage to escape wingless
and continue to crawl until they drop,
into stagnant watery graves,
behind downspouts and into crevices between rocks,
occasionally crushed beneath the feet of an uninvited passerby,
rushing inside to escape the carnage,
the rank and lusty slurping and spewing of the horde.


"A very clear sense of place and occasion: all those specifics. Gardenia, staphanotis, citronella, the koi pond. Then we tune in to the sounds and become aware of the wider world, the camera panning. The toad army appears in ominous fashion right on cue after the the TV shows are named. From then on we are with the toads. There is, perhaps unavoidably, an echo of Heaney's 'The Death of a Naturalist' here, but the sensuous reaction in terms of alliteration - surrender squashed, snap and sizzle, former frames, dinner drops, blindly buzzing - and the grand guignolesque overload of the last line. If one of the functions of poetry is to turn the world of physical experience into language this poem does it very well, plus a little more which20is down to the introduction of the first five lines that help relate the strangeness to the ordinary down home quality of the experience around it." --George Szirtes



Highly Commended
Ice
by mignon ledgard
conjuntion



why leave shadows
and enter the fractured red
when ploughed snow
brings the horizon closer

it is such poor vision
behind a broken window

glass shattered
to dust
we walk and wonder
why feet ache


"A good short poem - the last line feels a little thinner than the rest: such a rational question after that fractured red! The aural aspect is lovely: the sheer sound of it is excellent." --George Szirtes



Highly Commended
Island
by Judy Thompson
The Town



It was the goal in the center
of everyone’s summer;
you sat on a rock in the sun
thinking, I could do that now
and all at once there you were
with your toes in the water, mind made up.
The air tingled in your nose
as you struck out past the dropoff,
further out than you had ever been;
the lake bottom disappeared beneath you
and where the water a moment ago was filled
with sunbacked shadows now it was
dark, cold, a glimpse of what infinity
must look like. You saw hints of drowned stumps
impossibly far down, tried to ignore
the voices calling you back–
the only thing that gave you
courage was one strong voice saying, “Let her try,
for Christ’s sake!” and when you clambered
onto that far piney bank winded, arms aching,
you suddenly understood
what halfway there really meant


"A straightforward tightly written but sensuous narrative that depends on realizing the detail and allowing the reader to feel the power of those drowned stumps. The you is effectively internalized for the speaker for whom something is clearly at stake - or was at stake. Recounting an event of this nature - an initiation or encounter with infinity - carries a slight risk of inoculating the reader against risk. We kn ow the experience is over and are left to wonder why we are being told this now and how much weight 'halfway there' carries." --George Szirtes



Highly Commended
my name is river
by Derek Richard
Wild Poetry Forum



carlos says my face
resembles
a frenzy of boiling rivers.
this is the only compliment
my face
has ever received.

every morning
since i was five
i’ve begged the mirror to lie.
mirrors are the most honest
people i know.

carlos describes girls.
how they taste like stale popcorn,
feel like an old couch,
how they invite through eyes,
stamp out through scorn.
i’ll get you a girl, someday,

he promises, blind, drunk or crazy.
every morning
since i was five
i remember daddy, acid and sirens.
my cheekbones were soft,
people all around me, screaming

stay calm, stay calm.
carlos calls me River.
it’s one of the kindest things
anyone has ever said.
someday i’m going to get married,
father beautiful children,
drunk, blind or crazy.

the mirror will lie,
the itch behind my eyes will fade
and the frenzy of rivers
will blend into a calming of sea.
dear daddy, i’ll write,
my name is river, i am your son.


"The speaker is the really interesting thing here, since he is constructed like a character in fiction, with a voice out of the dramatic monologue tradition. The voice hangs in the air like something we recognize, something with baggage that is not entirely unfamiliar. That recognition helps for the most part since the baggage involves archetypes. The potential disadvantage is that the experience may remain 'out there', like a genre movie in which we know the tropes but stick with it because it is so well made. I am, I should add, assuming that the poem is not a piece of straight confessional. It feels a little too honed to be taken as a straight personal account, which would, after all, bring in its own problems." --George Szirtes



Highly Commended
Oils of Soft Fingers
by S. Thomas Summers
The Writer's Block



The sofa absorbs early sun,
siphons heat. Already, its paisley
swirls brighten. Small flowers –

petal edges rise like a sylvan Braille,
fertilized by cookie crumbs, potato chip salt.
I ask some unseen vine to tighten

its itchy length around my waist, pull
me beneath the cushions where I’d lie –
a forgotten coin. One day you’ll misplace

your eyeglasses, fail to remember where you
abandoned your keys. As you rummage
through the darkness that bears these

cushions, you’ll rediscover me, polish
my ache with the oils of soft fingers.


"This is a lovely vignette - that sylvan Braille is nicely found - and the warmth and sensuousness of it are beautifully conveyed. My one uncertainty is about the ending, that may be either a bit too complete or maybe not quite enough. The lost coin image is at the core of the poem. Maybe we should have a little more of the coin as coin at the end." --George Szirtes



Honorable Mentions

true romance in black and white

by Alex Stolis
Wild Poetry Forum


on the charcoal gray corner
of franklin and chicago
a sepia woman is alone,
maybe waiting for a bus,
maybe lonely, afraid, needing
protection; maybe on the make
with a razor sharp attitude
ready to slice you open
the instant you utter a sound.
she brings a cigarette to her lips,
hesitates for a moment
and once you crawl inside
that moment you are unsure,
words lodge in your throat,
your eyes drawn to the crease
in her skirt, the curve of her hips
as she shifts her weight, moves
her left hand to light the cigarette.
there is a spark and a flame
and you catch a brief flash
of truth or is it a well concealed lie.
she deliberately closes her eyes
and you count onethousandone,
onethousandtwo, when they open
she exhales. you want the smoke
to cut through you, want to know
her name, where she was born,
you want to take her home, want
to walk away and find another
drink in another city on another
corner and though you don’t believe
in god you pray for primary colors
and rain to break the silence.
she takes a final drag; in the still
air you catch your breath and wish
for her kiss to bleed you dry
until all that’s left are ragged
shreds of apathy drenched
in green, blue and red.



Surgery at 14
by Timothy Blighton
Desert Moon Review


For Emily

1.
The doctor returned
from his antiseptic kingdom with a gift: your son
with his ribs split to reveal the un-lit
entrails and their favorable signs, where his heart
bulged through the separation,
like an unclenching fist, one held holy by you,
since his father struck him

down the stairs. The hiss of veins
coil and snake through his chest with the charm
of blood from a flywheel
beating an irregular time: he has inherited
your straw hair, coal-eyes; he, too, has been
stripped naked by prescription, set upon
by a father’s curse of rage.

2.
Beside his bed, the hum
of machines. An air hose strung around his neck,
he is sewn back together, all the trauma settling
between dry coughs. Yet, his eyes will open
into white knuckles; fever-dreams will set,
shaking his useless arms. He will begin
to sweat; the nurses will be unable

to mix the proper ingredients to turn
bodyweight into silence, unable to dispel
the moan-cry, or reach out
and cup the chest of a sutured effigy. His voice
will sting the nostrils. The call-light will code:
open-close, open-close, open-close.



Tasting the Blade
by Pam O'Shaughnessy
criticalpoet.org


during the time of the babies
before the return of the large hadron collider
when my arms were full of you
the warm day lay quiet and blue
we took naps
the hours before lunch

were thirteen billion
comfort - belonging to
our slow movements as if we’d last
into afternoon and you’d be forever new
lifting the spoon like a spoon
has never been lifted before

with joy as if joy is eternal discovery
pushing forward into time and mass
at the stores of women you hid
behind the racks at noon the clocks held
still noon even after the ice-cream
still noon at the kindergarten door

I was a grazing ewe raising my head
to see again the noon the lamb the grass
the grass the lamb the unending noon
look look you’d say and I’d look lazily
stroking your soft hair
at the daylit moon a slip showing


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Oct 7 09, 11:21
Post #11


Mosaic Master
Group Icon

Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



September's winners have been announced - I'll be updated this reply with the results soon!


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
+Quote Post  Go to the top of the page
Cleo_Serapis
post Oct 9 09, 18:08
Post #12


Mosaic Master
Group Icon

Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for September 2009
Judge George Szirtes
Congratulations!


First Place
We Burned Incense
by Judy Swann
The Waters



And this is my mother’s mother, your great grandmother,
and this is her brother, this is my dad, they’re all dead.
This is your dad before we were married, this is me,
you can tell I was born in the year of the mountain goat
by the way I’m standing.

I never mastered politeness, and I like to be corrected
when I err. So, can I have the salt? Would you please
pass me the salt? Sorry to bother you, but could you
pass me the salt, please? He was only thirty-nine when
he did it, it was a lot less red

than you would expect, and also bloodier, if you can
picture that. “Humbling” or “exalting,” those were the poles.
It was the year the tornado touched down. And that’s me
again, how do you like my pony, my pleated dress? I
was a loved child, spoiled.

He could no longer bear it, you know how the young can
cry for a very long time and then some minutes after calm
has set in, a whooping sound shudders its way out
and then quiet again? You know what I mean? Not the
serene, poised people

In the leather armchairs of the university library, but the
people on the bus with the tweety-bird shirts and the red
noses, glum, with crooked teeth, muddy clothing, ripped
clothing that it would be rude to photograph, even to
get the crown of roses

documented, as it thundered mightily into the summer dusk,
each peal rumbling for five or six long seconds, waterfalls
of rain, pillows of it soaking into the wooden bridge, he was
never the one who liked to get wet, never liked the water much
even in paintings



"This gets it over the others because it is substantial, has a compulsive voice, takes risks with its reiterations in the second verse, tells a story without too much 'telling'. It is in effect a dramatic monologue that is close to the voice that makes it (many of Browning's are deliberately distanced from the maker). The fourth verse seems to me properly embodied, not a special effect, but firmly located in the speaking voice, that contains its irony with a certain edge. I wondered about the weak line endings (twice) of "the". It isn't quite syllabics but the form of it is teasing and faintly echoes Sapphics. It understands and plays off form." --George Szirtes



Second Place
The Secret Life
by Laurie Byro
Desert Moon Review



Seeing things in a light that spirals
down through the arch and tunnel of a nautilus
shell, on the strength of nothing too important,
genuine or real, a modesty, a sense of eyes
indirect, a pearl that bursts snowflake
on a green velvet coat. I’ve memorized us like that,
your arm as it extends to pass me a cup, a copper
penny slant of room, the smell of bergamot

behind the veils of buttery sun. Across the sea
of words, the bickering, the old habits, the stingy yelp
of Dickinson as we read to each other out loud.
The wilderness of the mind is where you are:
a forest that crouches under a bedroom window
while you sleep and feral words find you.



"An unrhymed sonnet, it was the last two lines that clinched it for me: the forest that crouches under a bedroom window (a memory of Baudelaire's forest of symbols?) and the feral words at the end. That firmed things up and gave the poem necessary claws. I liked the light spiraling down, then lost it a little on the snowflake and the green velvet coat. I didn't quite know how I was to respond to that. The last six lines, indeed from the smell of bergamot onwards, are very good." --George Szirtes



Third Place (tie)
On Waking I Think of Winter
by Sarah Sloat
Desert Moon Review



mostly because my legs jut like a long
pier out over waves
in the dark’s oceanic pitch

I think of winter when my husband snores across
the expanse of bed, tundra-vast
because children insist on visiting

papoose, bear cub, eskimo: wool
blanket curled below their throats

and I wake like Jack London, only less
bearded, less brave, though the brown kiss of a dog
assists me

where just moments ago I was steeped in
sleep, hallucinating a daisy-faced cartoon
landscape, now

I think of winter because of dreams redressed
by startling alarms, because I have no idea
how to go on

and I think of winter as I always do at dawn
and always did, before I guessed
what winter was

"A splendidly funny and childlike image to begin with, immediately given gravity by the dark oceanic pitch, the poem opens on its large possibilities with confidence. Then comes the snoring husband and the waking like Jack London. All this is lovely. The poem then moves on to a meditation about winter and I slightly wish it had moved back into the rougher, more surprising territory it set out with - not necessarily the same image but in that realm. It goes just a touch abstract at the end. It is still a very good piece of work but that cartoon landscape might have come up with something more. But excellent first eleven lines." --George Szirtes



Third Place (tie)
Untitled
by Matt Moseman
conjunction



opening myself up is often
difficult on the order of opening
a can with only teeth and fingernails.

This, of course,
has little to do with anything

as if anything had anything to do.

a word I use far too much is
they.
I am obsessed with them and their workings and I hate them
and I am so sure that they are
responsible for all I despise.

I never found inspiration in the
stars
or any other celestial component
for that matter.
The constellations have only ever
gotten me the girl,
by way of dissimulating speech.

every god I ever brought down from the sky
has been a little mumpsimus
and I will not cut my hair ever again
unless one of these days
I imprecate a household god who
is honestly bigger than my middling pecker.


"This, like the winner, is voiced for character, and has a real and convincing vigor that increases as the poem progresses. I think the verse form is a touch less substantial than it might be. There is real firmness in the voice and maybe the verse might have articulated that even more. I am not absolutely sure about the first three lines though I like them in themselves. I just don't see how they are developed as theme. The last two verses are the best of it - in fact the last two verses may actually BE the poem. And what a fine poem that would be." --George Szirtes




Third Place (tie)
Illegal #2
by Sergio Ortiz
Wild Poetry Forum



She makes it difficult
to ignore the wet clothes
on a man’s back

as he wanders into la migra’s
office for a 24-hour stay,
or a free jet ride home.

She’s too alarmed to remember
the two daughters left behind.

Umbrellas keep her in the shade
while officers bring tamarind flavored
snowballs to douse her dehydration.

They wick the sweat off her breast,
keep her armpits from staining,
stinking the robe.

Tomorrow she’ll rattle all this away
like cows shake off flies.


"This is succinct, well shaped, the language high register but subtle and supple. "They wick the sweat off her breast" is nicely dropped in. And the subject is, of course, compassion and its lack but does not make a great dramatic gesture either way, retaining its distance without coldness, out of a kind of respect." --George Szirtes




Honorable Mentions

Acquired Tastes

by Allen M. Weber
FreeWrights Peer Review


If he’s perturbed at all by the drowning
wasp, twirling in week-old dishwater,
or dismayed at the ruin of what’s left

of their ficus—its leaves shriveled and
dropping like question marks on the floor—
he refuses to concede any of it.

His was a talent for beginning; but once
past the shallow bluster of seduction
he found her to be an acquired taste, like

even a single malt Scotch. He’d deny
using the toothbrush she left behind
and claim that photographs of her, and them

together, didn’t upset him, that they were
taken down to mute the walls: he’d never
get used to the colors she chose.

And he’s been too busy to buy new paint,
so the unfaded rectangles still mock
the weakness of his endgame. Resigning

to suffer through her favorite Coltrane,
he sips diluted Scotch and wonders why
one wants to acquire a taste for anything.


"In medias res - a place, an action, a question. The diction is interesting: 'perturbed' 'ficus', 'shallow bluster of seduction', the syntax teasing and sustained. The tone is light, a touch breezy even. It sets out a subject then explores it, that is all, like a piece of fiction, but it is skilful and entertaining." --George Szirtes



air poem
by Divina
criticalpoet.org


the first word
is on the tip
of my tongue
I can’t think of anything else

other than having
lemon tea
while I type
my fingers away

contemplating the dreams
that in the end
have found a home

and the sun
rising in my eyes
things change

so I’d prefer
to give it a name
or a colour that isn’t
yellow or orange

the apollos
are dreaming about
the cassandras and trying
to figure out what to do
with all the love

how similar
how different
how strange
our hands are
as we hold the air


"Very good beginning and ending. It may be that the passage in the middle about home and yellow or orange is not as important to the piece as the more blowsy apollos and cassandras., though their entrance is somewhat suprising. The diction in the best parts is clear, simple, tight."--George Szirtes



Bird-dog, Bird-dog
by Margaret Hemme
The Waters


he’s a god
fur flapping
racing frantic
circles
leaping earth
green and gravel
fringed
by wired walls

he hears
the blackbirds
inky
digging dots
coating oaks
fluttering far
no fences
free, and one

has landed
startles
rises
from his lawn
too late

the rubber ball
is black now
bouncing
and he’s trained
to grab it
from the sky

bird-dog, bird-dog
good catch, but
I’d rather
watch it fly


"It's the writing rather than the whole shape here that seems particularly good, the second verse with those inky blackbirds. I think the last verse thins the poem a little, the tone maybe a touch flip. It is the observation that is the strongest element of the poem." --George Szirtes


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Oct 20 09, 19:23
Post #13


Mosaic Master
Group Icon

Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for October 2009
Judge Majid Naficy
Congratulations!


First Place
Rain
by Anna Yin
Pen Shells



You don’t pray for rain in mountains.
It comes and goes as if to home.
The soil is forever soft to preserve its depth.
Leaves unfold themselves to hold each drop.
Sometimes rain wanders in clouds,
others it runs into rising streams.
At the end of each cycle, you always hear it singing
all the way home, kissing leaves, tapping trees.
Still, some drops stay longer on the tall branches
until the sky clears.
All of a sudden, a wind blows,
they let go -
A light shower surprises you
sitting motionless
under a phoenix tree.



"When I read this poem, I immediately knew that it would be my first choice. That's how beauty prevails itself. The poem begins with a strong statement that rain frequents the mountain as if the mountain is its home, and ends with an unexpected experience caused by the rain." --Majid Naficy



Second Place
Forbidden Lullaby
by Walter Schwim
Mosaic Musings cheer.gif Congrats Wally!!!



Let my thoughts tonight caress you
as the moon does to the sea
with a rhythm slow and ancient
in a flowing liquid glee.

May the cycles of the cosmos
herald rising of a tide
that will float us off together
on an everlasting ride.

Hold me tightly as we venture
on our voyage though the skies
so my warmth will still surround you
when tomorrow you arise.

For by daybreak I must leave you
to atone a life of sin
until turning of the heavens
drops a key to let you in.



"This is a smooth satirical poem about a "forbidden" love. To understand the poem, the word "thoughts" in the first line is crucial. The image presented in the last stanza leaves us with a sacrilegious question: Who is living upstairs? A generous God in the heavens or the narrator who wishes to drop the key for the lover awaiting downstairs?" --Majid Naficy



Third Place
Without salt
by Mandy Pannett
The Write Idea



It’s about waking up
to the sound of a bird,
a bird for all birds
in the tree outside,
with snow on the sill,
an air that is easy to breathe.

And I’m still back
in that favourite time –
that crummy old flat
in Washington Square,
squatting with poets
on cold brown steps,
bright as the stars but hungry
for syllables, words
with a passion and meat.

But it’s winter in Paris and years since that
and they’re all long gone,
those rebels are dead.
I’m missing the salt,
need words that are tough,
am tired of courage,
go on.



"This poem rests on memory. The bird that awakes the poet brings back the memory of the poet's youth, hanging out with fellow poets in Washington Square. I think the poem does not need the last stanza and should end with the line "with a passion and meat." --Majid Naficy




Honorable Mention

Bills and Yet More Bills

by Christopher T. George
FreeWrights Peer Review



Bills arrive uninvited at our doors
predictable as death or, erm, worms.

Bills! Don’t like ‘em! Take
‘em out to lunch–we’ll go Dutch!

Bills on ducks and platypuses,
the joke my grandma told about
Bill Sticker. . . or was it Bill Poster?

Will Bill Hickock, Buffalo Bill,
Bill Clinton. . . the bill you paid
for that Knickerbocker Glory.

Bill Bailey, Bill the Bailiff, the Old Bill,
Portland Bill, Bill the Cat,
Bill Bixby, Bill Blass, Bill Cosby.

Mein Gott! Tot up the bill for that lot!
Rat-a-tat-tat, empty billfold.

Hey, Bills, I’ll take a raincheck, ha ha ha!
Oh, mmmmm. Hi, Mr. Death, Bill Collector.

plastic cut-outs of Elvis. “Blue Hawaii.”
How will I ever pay the bills? Aloha!
Her facility sits south of Loch Raven:

Donna and I on our wedding day in a Rolls
chauffeured round the reservoir, under massive
pines; 40 years before, my family arrived from

the UK: huge gray fish nosed beneath the dam.
Catfish, bottom feeders, corporate clowns.
Deeper depths. What’s the answer–to drive

Mom and myself into the deep of Loch Raven?
Yet, how quick would the end be? I gnaw
my lower lip, pour another whisky, drown.


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Peterpan
post Oct 22 09, 04:11
Post #14


Creative Chieftain
*****

Group: Gold Member
Posts: 1,621
Joined: 18-August 05
From: Johannesburg, South Africa
Member No.: 127
Real Name: Beverleigh Gail Annegarn
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Jox





Hello Wally and Cleo!

Is this the first time we have a SECOND!?

CONGRATULATIONS WALLY!

How wonderful! Absolutely superb!

I am thrilled for you! I seconded the nomination poem remember!!!!! I knew you were a winner!

Bev sun.gif


·······IPB·······

May the angels guide your light.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Oct 22 09, 05:50
Post #15


Mosaic Master
Group Icon

Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Hi Bev,

No - actually Eric (Merlin) Wizard.gif placed second in Dec 2007 with his poem, Northland Solstice. Here are the placements MM has experienced since joining the IBPC in Jan, 2007:

JaxMyth's "Drought" - HM in April 2007
AMETHYST's, "Masked Artwork" - HM in April 2007
Kathy's "Jackie" - 3rd place in June 2007
Merlin's "Once Upon a Time" - HM in Sep 2007
Merlin's "Northland Solstice" - 2nd place in Dec 2007
Aphrodite's "Time Gone Cold" - HM in Dec 2007
Peterpan's "Zambezi Storm" - HM in Sep 2008
Marc-Andre Germain's "At a mall in Bangkok" - HM in July 2009
Psyche's "Bereavement" - HM in July 2009
Thoth's "Forbidden Lullaby" - 2nd place in Oct 2009

Excellent! You can read this poem in the 'Winning IBPC poems in the IBPC archives and in the current forum here too. cheer.gif

Great stuff! Read.gif
~Cleo hsdance.gif


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Peterpan
post Oct 22 09, 06:06
Post #16


Creative Chieftain
*****

Group: Gold Member
Posts: 1,621
Joined: 18-August 05
From: Johannesburg, South Africa
Member No.: 127
Real Name: Beverleigh Gail Annegarn
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Jox





Thanks Cleo!

You must be very proud!

Bev


·······IPB·······

May the angels guide your light.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Nov 24 09, 22:30
Post #17


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for November 2009
Judge Majid Naficy
Congratulations!


First Place
Certain in my Immortality - 1947
by Alice Folkart
Blueline



The park public pool, huge and blue,
even in polio season my favorite place,
everyone taking the same risks equally,
and the wise lifeguards, maybe sixteen at best
shouted, little girl, little girl, get back to the shallow end.

We couldn’t see the polio germs in the blue water,
nor clinging to our sun-reddened backs,
nor beaded on our eyelashes, nor between our little toes,
so we paid no mind to the calls of ‘little girl, little girl,’
and went on swimming where the water was darker blue.

Maybe those polio germs got some of those kids,
maybe the blond boys with freckles on their noses,
the ones who had water fights at the other end of the pool,
the ones who also didn’t listen to the life guards’ shouts
of, “Hey, guys, knock it off! No water fights.

Maybe those polio germs got the fat lady in the flower-petal swim cap,
or the old man with the belly as big as a whole baby pig,
or the skinny old woman, all angles like an erector set,
but they didn’t get me and they didn’t get the life guards
and I swam every day that summer, certain in my immortality.



"Polio is associated with water. Remember FDR. While sailing in Canadian territory in 1921, he fell into the water. After getting on board he felt a chill, and in two days, was paralyzed from the waist down. The narrator's memory belongs to 1947, when the polio vaccine was not yet available. Now that swine flu is circulating, there is one more reason to relate to this beautiful and meaningful poem. Perhaps the poet is being ironic, because in spite of imminent danger, she speaks of a sense of immortality. Nevertheless, the polio situation is similar to any other risk-taking experience that we face in life. We usually cross our fingers, hope for the best, and assume that the misfortune will not fall upon ourselves." --Majid Naficy



Second Place
String theory (Shrodinger’s coffin)
by Jessica Haynes
Moontown Cafe



breathe
in and out,
ribs up and ribs down
like a flexible cage

It’s strange,
at least I think,
how many pretty phrases
English has
for ”dead”.

so maybe
if string theory can be trusted
(my heart on a broken thread)
if I never see you lying there
(skin like lilies after frost
hands like too soft marble)
maybe
if I never hear the words
(passed away, to a better place
so sorry, such a tragedy)

maybe I can bring you back;
if I can only
choose
which thread to follow
which one to tug
like yarn in a labyrinth
I’ll string it
through the darkness
so you can follow it home.



"One does not have to know the "string theory" as a mathematical theory for describing the properties of fundamental particles or Erwin Schrodinger, the Austrian physicist, in order to enjoy this touching and whimsical poem. Our poet approaches the question of "death" similar to the views of my countryman Omar Khayyam, with the difference that Khayyam sees the fate as a puppeteer and our poet as a modern physicist. The ending is especially playful, when the poet wants to shake a string through which the deceased can find his way back home." --Majid Naficy



Third Place
Without salt
by Sarah J. Sloat
Desert Moon Review



Rorschach of the laundry sack –

I pinch your bottom and some see
the long maw of the crocodile
in a shadow play

or a primitive insect, a locust,
maybe a mother who won’t let go.

Little intimate of the bedclothes,
into your muzzle go rags
and nightgowns, trappings and briefs,

gnawed but not pierced,
not discussed, not disclosed.

Could you speak, your voice
might be twang or chirp, but
you come from the church that touts

shut your trap as first commandment,
a monk’s tongue sworn to silence.

When your joint snaps,
when it rejects resting ajar, all
that is conjured is the clack

of a castanet, terse, reluctant,
a foot stamped to discourage dance.

Second cousin to the mousetrap,
tense and cunning as a Gemini,
you’re yin/yang with an oral fixation

though upside down
on the clothesline, your silhouette

reveals the inverse,
a contraption that needs both
to take in and keep,

the house’s clampdown,
the control freak.



"'Rorschach' is a psychology test named after Hermann Rorschach, a Swiss psychologist, who showed his subjects standard inkblots to analyze their interpretations. When I read this well-crafted poem for the first time, I did not know of Rorschach, and yet I felt that the clothespin described in this poem is itself being psycho-analyzed." --Majid Naficy




Honorable Mention

‘Appy ‘Our

by Stuart Ryder
The Poets' Graves



A week an’ a day
shreddin’ me soles
ont’ Pennine Way.
Back int’ town,

straight tut’ pub:
order some rolls –
“Good ‘onest grub”.
Pints, get ‘em down!

Well-oiled, me legs lollin’,
Ah lounged, me mind mullin’
o’r background cha’ –
simple but good n tha’…

then our fittie barmaid with flut’rin’
eyes an’ ‘uge tits says Ey-oh Stu!
Stands o’r me wicked like, but’rin’
bread an’ Ah risk a kiss. She does, too.

Pink slabs of ‘am wi’ a garlic mayo.
An’ when she gives me a refill,
a golden sunbeam glances off me ‘ead.


·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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Cleo_Serapis
post Jan 17 10, 20:29
Post #18


Mosaic Master
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Group: Administrator
Posts: 18,891
Joined: 1-August 03
From: Massachusetts
Member No.: 2
Real Name: Lori Kanter
Writer of: Poetry & Prose
Referred By:Imhotep



Winning Poems for December 2009
Judge Majid Naficy
Congratulations!


First Place
Manufactured to Perform
by C. Albert
criticalpoet.org



I love how my organs are shaped
the same as anyone’s, manufactured
to perform: a heart that drums,
filtering twirl of kidneys, liver,
lungs that bellow on.

I hate how weak my machinery is
that a noise of germs, single-coated parasites,
scatter harmony. My tortured body
has become parts upon my bed. Nowhere
that doesn’t hurt, except my funeral.

What is it that comes back, silent as air,
to lift an invalid? Not heart, liver, kidney, lungs,
but a tenacity within the drum,
the twirl, the bellows.



"I chose these four poems randomly as I was reading all poems alphabetically. To my surprise, not only do all four selected poems speak about the issue of death and dying, but, somehow, they also make up a whole and complement each other respectively. The first poem sees human body as a piece of machinery with a drumming heart, filtering kidneys, and bellowing lungs which only the tenacity of its parts can protect it against disabling germs." --Majid Naficy



Second Place
Night Sepia
by Tim J. Brennan
About Poetry Forum



The first thing I do to awaken
is turn to music to subdue
that time when the strange bird
sings its own dark song, gaudy
among dream flowers

each night seeds of my past
are scattered from shadows
in the countable hours between
saneness or sickness

sometimes my mother at the foot
of the bed in her night chair—
she waits almost every night
for mourning

sometimes Chopin is at the window
composing his Preludes, half
listening more to his third doctor
than to my personal requests
for a requiem

old teachers: Richard speaking
of Canterbury in his frog voice;
or Elizabeth, tall & brittle,
white & stork like,
urging me to write about art
and singing or music

“just because you’re no good
at either three, don’t mean
your writing can’t be”

like hummingbirds
within me, like small kisses

wondering where I’ve been,
where I’m going, and asking
why I still hold pictures
of people I know longer know



"The second poem is wild. It speaks of a patient who sees Frederic Chopin as well as heroes of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales at bed." --Majid Naficy



Third Place
Searching
by Witt Wittman
SplashHall Poetry



Contemplating the disarray of the bedroom,
I picked up one paint-splattered shoe.
You always wore your good clothes
when you decided to tackle a project.
Good clothes became work clothes,
yet you never wanted anything new.
I tossed the shoe into your closet;
that was all I could do.

Wandering into the den,
I plopped into your easy chair,
slipped my feet under the crocheted blanket.
Our daughter made it for you,
but it wasn’t comfortable.
I don’t belong here in your place.

Throwing off the blanket,
I sat on the floor and
looked at your puzzle board―
pieces in piles of greens, blues, tans―
the edges completed.
I should pick it up and put it away,
but the den would look bare without it.

I strolled onto the porch,
our favorite place to sit and play.
Still learning after all these years,
you were always thrilled when I won in dominoes.
Spider webs decorate your chair,
not quite covering the holes burned there
by your ever-present cigarettes.

I lean on the railing,
seeking more signs of you.



"The third poem is written from the point of view of a survivor searching for the signs of her deceased husband in different objects and corners in their old house." --Majid Naficy




Honorable Mention

Tree Planting
by Christine J. Schiff
About Poetry Forum



It is tree planting time again,
this time a Kauri for Ann.
Some people die slowly,
day after day as they live.
Some die quickly after
living too fast.
Ann died gently as she had lived.
There was time for us to talk,
with the quiet ease
of old friends
about her favourite tree.

Together we had planted in the past
trees for others,
now it was time for her
to decide which one I’d plant
alone in her memory.
The Kauri grows slowly,
lives for a thousand years.
She said the wind would
whistle though hers,
and so it does, so it does……



·······IPB·······

"It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to." ~ J.R.R Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Collaboration feeds innovation. In the spirit of workshopping, please revisit those threads you've critiqued to see if the author has incorporated your ideas, or requests further feedback from you. In addition, reciprocate with those who've responded to you in kind.

"I believe it is the act of remembrance, long after our bones have turned to dust, to be the true essence of an afterlife." ~ Lorraine M. Kanter

Nominate a poem for the InterBoard Poetry Competition by taking into careful consideration those poems you feel would best represent Mosaic Musings. For details, click into the IBPC nomination forum. Did that poem just captivate you? Nominate it for the Faery award today! If perfection of form allured your muse, propose the Crown Jewels award. For more information, click here!

"Worry looks around, Sorry looks back, Faith looks up." ~ Early detection can save your life.

MM Award Winner
 
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RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 25th June 2019 - 06:26




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