Sonnet on Red Hair by Frank Cuta
It's here written that bliss is long red hair,
To run ten fingers through the flowing strands,
Folding the flaming locks between your hands,
To bury your fond face and thus all cares.
Here lies crimson sand bathed in soft moonlight,
Ardent ancient spirits native and wise,
Bright buttercup blue, mischief in her eyes,
Smoldering forge fires that warm up the night.
Beyond hope a bloom beckons from the void,
The sweet scent of a rust rose drunk with joy.
Spectacular gold and red rosebud blend,
With sunrise, sunset and the summers end.
And languid dreams and pixy schemes are there,
Resplendent in each flaming strand of hair.
First Place, Adult
Dawn grabs the earth, rolls it by Carrie Gilstrap-Nettle
Dawn grabs the earth, rolls it,
darkness stumbles out of resting places and
steals to west faces of mountains,
and crouches in canyons.
Dawn gives way to noon and darkness scurries
to its last chance for refuge in caged seas and thick forests.
woken and harried
exits in confusion and rides into madness.
First Place, Teen
Changed by Tori Cartwright
You changed my life forever.
I was strong, healthy, and happy.
Then you came along and made my world miserable.
My full health was taken, and my sight became vacant.
I could see colors, objects, friends and my family.
I could see all of the world in its beauty, but now I see nothing but a black empty void.
You had quickly found pleasure in bringing me great pain and misery.
Your blastoma’s ambushed my body in order to claim it as your own.
You wanted to seize every cell, tissue, and bone.
My troops fought for nearly two years, along with the white coated allies.
You fought through nuclear particles, chemicals, and antibodies, just to claim your victory.
You hit me hard, and nearly drove me to extinction￼.
You thought that you could win and nothing could stop you.
You sought to create a weak, fearful, little girl, instead you’ve done the opposite.
You have set yourself up for great failure.
You have created a strong, confident, woman.
You have created a warrior instead of the weak girl that would rather hide from her fears.
I will not stop fighting you.
You may still affect me in some ways, but you will never get a solid grip on me.
I will continue to slip through your fingers, and when you try to catch me again, I’ll just laugh.
You don’t seem to understand that you’re losing.
I am a woman that you will never be able to defuse.
I will continue to fight, and help others that are going through the same battle.
You will find that one day, you will no longer be able to abuse anyone.
Don’t you get it?
You won’t win.
First Place, Children
The Way Our Solar System Works by Amelia Laing
The earth is everyone,
Everyone is the earth.
The earth orbits the sun,
That’s how it’s always been.
The sun sits on his throne,
His throne of possibility.
Because, as the king of the solar system
He has unlimited possibility.
And this happened because,
Of nothing he did,
Or did not do.
Because everyone’s decided that’s how it is.
We all notice the sun,
We all want the sun.
The sun’s never been told,
To stop giving light,
Because everyone knows that without the sun,
Us earthlings would die.
But what the suns of this world,
Fail to notice,
Is that orbitting earth,
Is a moon.
She’s always there
Controlling the tides.
Helping us earthlings survive.
Without the moon,
Perched, unnoticed in space,
The water and land would collide.
When clouds block the sun,
Us people all notice.
But when clouds block the moon,
People don’t notice.
Whether the moon’s there or not,
It’s just a night sky.
And sometimes in her life,
All the moons in this world,
Will be told they are shining too bright.
And if there’s a moon,
Who is not told not to shine,
Then she hasn’t been trying to shine.
Because that’s how it is,
And that’s how it always has been.
But it doesn’t have to be this way,
All the moons need to try.
Even when they are told not to.