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Congrats to our 2015 Sonnet Contest Winners!
By Nikki Burge
Again—we're through & through & through & through,
We don't love anymore, we just pretend,
Like a red threat stitching the hearts of two,
With our seams coming undone at each end.
Forgotten, tangled chaos we've become,
A wild, unruly, knotted, crimson string,
To snare the heart and suffocate till numb;
This woven mess, this silly tragic thing.
Indeed—embroidery is a fine craft
For experts; no mesh of gnarled mistakes,
And we've tried to do our patchwork task
But unravelled the threading that we've snaked.
Warped tapestry that love's needle renders
Becomes the prick-mark that a scar remembers.
That I Once Believed the Sun Followed Me
By Carrie Deleskie
—To my father on his birthday, February 14th.
Childhood in a jeep: Cape Breton tree line
separates sun from shadow, bright from dark.
Light's movements make a mercurial mind—
distract me from spotting tumored pine bark.
Square seconds of shine repeat in sequence
of pine, not pine, pine, not pine, pine, white birch.
Shade has the singular grace of absence—
the lack of rays not lack in this drive's search.
Dad catches me fumbling with the visor,
placid as the Bras d'Or in my unrest,
asks me the matter, then speaks words wiser
than any that have since followed—the best:
"The sun is not following you, sweet dove.
It's that it's so big, like for you: my love."
Ever & Anon, Love Is Lost & Love May Come
By Mitchell Brinton
In dour hours, when reminisce & regret
compound & mould memory into mess,
undoing many months of convalesce,
I drag off a desperate cigarette
& tell myself she's gone; her silhouette
a fading form—forgotten! I confess
I look for her in every floral dress,
potter's wheel, & vegan kitchenette—
while searching for one I've found another:
a sincere & passionate suffragette
beyond all beauty seen before; rather
apt to be adored; turns a pirouette—
I'll find a way to her impress,
before she's time to second guess!
By Jenny Urich
Last winter's snow, I penned a sonnet here
My heart still blank, it had no passioned theme
Between these days, my tissues in this year
Met him, and bought into the common dream.
So high was I that syrup, wine, and cream
Would gladly have flowed onto this empty page
And last year's words from when I was still green
Would wash away beneath red passion's rage.
But it's not rare for warmth, like gasoline
To grow so hot it's apt to burn away
One week ago, he crushed my red machine
And left me cold alone; and on my birthday.
So goes the rhythm, joy and painful times
Next year what hue will taint my fourteen lines?
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- 2016 Sonnet Contest Winners!