Bio Note: For a few weeks now I have been busy reading/screening 208 manuscripts for a book award. My teacher wife always said that you learn a lot by teaching and, though reading isn't exactly teaching, I have learned/relearned many subtle hints about presenting a manuscript. By reading dozens of manuscripts I have encountered an incredible range of work—in subject matter, vocabulary and figures of speech, tone, in technique/forms. and so on.
for Heather Three days into the new year, I dismantle the pine tree fallen by secret rot and glittering ice, the axe singing cleanly. Sweating, chilled, I pause to breath painful air. * Our daughter visits a friend in Morocco, celebrating her birthday away from home for the first time. She’s looking at pottery stalls in Marrakech or posing for a snapshot, embarrassed, on a smelly camel. Perhaps sunbathing on a beach near Rabat; the impending Mid-east war closer to her mother and me. * In the circle of fallen needles, round as a Christmas tree skirt, a leafless box elder sapling has suddenly appeared, just waist high like a walking stick waiting for a man in need.
Screening Manuscripts for a Poetry Book Award
This year cicada Brood X rises in astounding numbers from their earthy paradise to risk, as they feel they must, their lives for successful sex. And shrill they sing in a desperate hope. After predators gorge, groan away, survivors fly to find their reward, their version of ecstasy rising from a tentative maybe to a certain yes. Beyond that, how can a judge decide some false superlative?
©2021 Frederick Wilbur
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