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CBC Poetry Prize


Some of the first serious writing I ever did was poetry. I was 15. I started writing poetry because who fucking cares.

Poetry continued into my adulthood. Mostly when I was guiding and a bit when I was living in British Columbia. It was a quick and easy therapy that made me feel like I was using my brain for something other than just functional existence.

Short story long, I entered the CBC Poetry contest last May. They released their long list today and I wasn’t on it. I love the CBC writing contests. They get you writing. They make you a better writer. Even if you don’t win or get listed. Because, as we all know, to be a better writer, you need to write. All the time. A lot.

Here is what I submitted. It was titled ‘I Want to be a Horse’:

 

Portmanteadvertising

 

It takes an Advillage.

 

He wasn’t invisible

 

He wasn’t invisible.

But he thought he was.

 

He sat still.

He whispered.

 

He watched.

He didn’t get involved.

 

He wore unassuming clothing.

He didn’t have any strong political views.

 

He was structured.

Rudimentary. Basic.

 

Though his skin was translucent.

Only  mildly see-through.

 

His veins and organs were visible.

As was his skeleton.

 

So he was a little bit invisible.

But not completely.

 

I want to be a horse

 

The pasture lies before me.

Wind in my mane.

Shoot me if I’m useless.

 

Last thoughts

 

As I positioned my head

I noticed the handle was maple

or walnut

no

maple.

Dyed a thick red.

The striations on the hilt

almost spelled out a prayer

that I knew was not for me

so, I was resolved to watch.

As the axe fell

I spied a boy in the crowd.

And as my head rolled to his feet

he stuck his tongue out at me.

I smiled.

 

Cultural Appropriation

 

I can’t help it.

I’m adopted.

 

Theatricality

 

Man stands weeping in the centre of a dark stage.

 

Spotlight hits him. He is shocked.

 

Man

Oh!

 

The man then notices his hands. He looks at them, astonished at first.

 

Man

Oh.

 

He then smells them, slowly. Then he can’t stop, his sniffing is cathartic.

 

Man

Oh, oh my, oh my oh.

 

After one last very large sniff, he stops and looks directly at the audience.

 

Man

My heart is a noose.

 

Then with one large punch, he knocks himself unconscious. He crumbles to the stage.

 

Three beats.

 

Enter man two, stage right. To audience:

 

Man 2

There are no refunds.

 

As his hands slowly raise to his nose the lights go down.

 

Acrobatic stichomythia  

 

Our father was abused.

Parenting was something he never wanted to do.

So, when handed the torch, he did so with trepidation.

All things said, he is doing his best.

Hell dealt our mother’s hand.

Long bouts of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue.

Gregarious names for ‘constant pain’ and ‘sleeping due to need’.

Rendered inoperable for most of her teens, she persevered.

Everything she is now she gives to us.

Not to forget our father, he is a bastion of love.

Love that he rarely saves for himself.

Eclectic as they were they always met in the middle.

Yielding us, embracing their faults and strengths, we are better for it.

 

Internet Spam As Muse

 

I use this opportunity

To thank great priest Jayema

I wanted her to bring my husband back to me

I have been in great pains since he left

He went for lentils

And persimmon root

but did not return

My soup spoiled

Then that day

I contacted Priest Jayema

She cast a love spell for me

She told me to wait for just 24 hours

He never came back

48, still no

Priest Jayema

Thank you

That was best 300 euros I’ve ever spent

Also

My husband carries many STI’s

And his love is like a child’s sock

Full of curdled goat’s milk

 

It’s YOUR spleen

 

“It’s a spleen,” the doctor said hesitantly.

“Can I keep it?” I asked.

Re: title

 

27 minutes of life that I’ll never get back before I’m rushed to the emergency room

 

I find something that resembles a gummie bear in a coat I haven’t worn since New Years three years ago.

I sit pondering its consumption.  

 

My wife is addicted to videos of wild animals fighting and it worries me

 

I get bored at Christmas parties.

 

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Categories: Other

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