create | encounter

winning submissions & honorable mention pieces

October 22, 2017

You have broken all the pieces in my head

an innocence that never knew itself for sure,

a nightmare buried deep in layers of dread

and twisted it until it bled.

When stars were spinning, you called me immature,

you have broken all the pieces in my head

just the sight of me m...

October 22, 2017

What about those without a song – 
whose long journey begins 

October 22, 2017

i skimmed the heart right out of you
he didn’t say
after all, giving voice and name gives face and reality
and faceless things…
...can be skimmed away

so by not saying
with saying many things ---

--buzz, rush-scuzz, hush-hush--

i skimmed, he will not say
but jargon, yes


October 22, 2017

Guaranteed, guaranteed—
they say nothing in this life is a guarantee.
They tell me not to worry.
They say Emily, Emily, you’re free! 
              You. Are. FREE.
Don’t you get it? 
              Isn’t it catchy?...

October 22, 2017

In the evening, in the humidity of mid-summer

she sits on the balcony, someone she

her mind a stones-throw away from getting lost in an opaque past.

A deep breeze rushes through her,

She remembers the long quiet of the drive, that day.

Nothing like some had told her it woul...

October 22, 2017

If from today
Your life was to be played back in reverse
So I could see it set out day by day
Our years together, kisses, fights,
Kisses again
Our first date
And then
You on the day before we met
You as a boy
A baby boy
A pre-born baby in your mother’s womb
In full vie...

October 22, 2017

Give me bile,
throat-cast to scald the tongue,
the lips, the esophagus,
the peach skin of my eyelids
closed to the images from
the stories my father
read from the newspaper of
the tragedy of Socrates
written in statistical hemlock

It comes up from my stomach
and into th...

October 22, 2017

hands could work all day – no blisters and no pain
fingers were clasping and unclasping
went completely limp

we walked in the laboratory every day
heard a skull being crushed
saw the precise ways identifiable parts are
each morning staring into the darkness

October 22, 2017

While Jefferson waxed philosophic

and Washington led soldiers to battle,

their slaves maintained their Virginia estates,

waiting for the masters to come home.

What were they fighting for, again?

October 22, 2017

The Yalu River is cold. 
I can imagine the rumbling 
despite standing away 
from a bush of rape flowers that shining 
like gold. 
The head of it lies in those limpid valleys; the tail 
of it goes to that vague ocean.

The wind of the Yalu River is cold, 
the passengers o...

Please reload

1st Place Winners

When others drove with their headlights on

and tied yellow ribbons onto trees

we wore black and walked to school.

When torches lit, and oil fields bur...

1st Place: Inside the Beast

October 13, 2018

Please reload

Other Winners

October 13, 2018

Please reload