More Winning Poems from 2016

Here are the winning Poems from our 2nd and 3rd place 2016 winners.

Second Place Winner Noah Bogdonoff

wicker basket, at the end of the world
I hope that the end of the world is in June

and that I am unemployed

(imagine my relief

at never having to write another cover letter)

and that the quiet man with a blanket

under an awning at Kennedy Plaza

has the sense to celebrate.
I hope that I am where the word “plaza”

sounds foreign and unappealing

Berkshires, Adirondacks

Hudson Highlands, White Mountains
somewhere lonely
and that the fireflies don’t let up

until the bitter end

believing as arthropods believe

in a nameless tomorrow
I only hope that I have the sense

to pack a wicker basket

hold someone’s hand on a high hilltop

eat dinner slowly

and lie naked in the grass

rehearsing decomposition
(it will be itchy

but then we will be gone)
dinner will be apples, cheese, bread

and bad beer

and my friend’s lips

will taste childish

and we will travel backwards

through the gates of knowledge

swallowed in the disappearing constellations.


Third Place Winner Kara Provost

Taste of tea
like bitter brown earth
calling me to something

as steam whispers off
black cold ground
in early morning sun,

light rising
from behind tangled trees
in the empty lot across the street.

Empty of houses
but full
of crazy-leaning trunks, brambles

crunch of years
of fallen leaves, skulls
of thrown-out jack-o-lanterns,

rustle of gymnastic squirrels
chased by feral cats, smooth gray-suited catbird
yowling commentary

punctuated by twitches of his neat upright tail
and dry knocking of woodpecker,
head red against dark wood.

In spring there’ll be
an explosion of green
like every cycle before

and we’ll go a little crazy
with joy staring at the empty lot,
the skeleton trees refleshing with leaves
as if something we’d never seen.





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