In an amazing surprise, I discovered my poem “To a Birch Tree” has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize by Orchards Poetry, Karen Kelsay’s gorgeous poetry online zine which features (though not exclusively) formal poetry. What an honor to be selected among such a formidable group of fine poets!
Every year the Great River Shakespeare Festival in Winona, Minnesota, also hosts the Maria W. Faust sonnet contest, the subject of a post on this blog. I submitted several sonnets to the contest, one of which won a prize in the “Laureates” category.
I just received a letter of notification and have been spending serious time on Cloud Nine, definitely a nice cloud to be on. The winning sonnet is “Rain Trance,” which was published on String Poet awhile back, but which I’ll post here too, since a few years have passed.
There will be a Reception and Reading at the festival in Winona on August 2 at 11:00 am when Shakespearean actors will read the winning poems (there are a number of them in different categories).
I love this constant thrumming on the roof,
wrapping me inside its thick cocoon
of sound, a monastery in the rough.
Percussive chants, these waves refresh the bone,
carry in their very pulse a silence –
not an eye, but a collective calm
whose soft crescendo beckons with its cadence.
Through swells of chattering I hear a psalm.
My sense of place dissolves, the clouding hours
disintegrate, my thoughts – mere whisper-heft –
form solo islands in a sea of choirs.
And who or what am I? And what is left
of this world as I drift away, aloof?
Just a constant thrumming on the roof.