The Ekphrastic Review is delighted to have Tricia Cimera Whitworth as our challenge editor this time. She has chosen a remarkable artwork by Jane Burn. Tricia is now part of our editorial staff, contributing to the journal in various ways. She has been a poetry judge here in the past, and a longtime regular contributor. We couldn't be happier!
I chose Self Portrait As One Of The Hare Witches by English artist and poet Jane Burn because rabbits/hares have been an integral part of my life. I had rabbits growing up, the main one being a big, black silver-tipped rabbit named Clover in my teenage years. He would run madly in the backyard, leaping around, and then imperiously tear bushes or flowers aside that were in his way. Watership Down by Richard Adams is one of my favorite books (my Clover was named after one of his characters). For a time my family lived in Milan, Italy and it was common to see rabbits hanging from hooks in the butcher shop windows, with their beautiful fur still attached. I live in St. Charles, Illinois now and my yard is a bit overrun with cavorting grey rabbits. They just seem to follow me. Also, 2023 is the Year of the Rabbit in China.
Jane Burn is quite an amazing artist and poet out of England. This particular piece is so alive, so fluid! There is intensity and movement in the relationship between the women and hares (or are they the same creature: ‘shapeshifters’, as Jane calls them.).
I am so curious as to what the responses will be, as is Jane. There are no wrong answers. Run, jump, and play – as all rabbits do – with this challenge.
Tricia Marcella Cimera
A note from the artist, Jane Burn:" My artwork is meant as a celebration and a commentary upon the power of women and the complexity of our relationships - or needs, our ways of supporting one another, our connections to nature and myth. I have written a collection based on women and the historic idea of hare-witch shapeshifting and this was very much in my mind at the time I produced this piece - the influence really shaped this work. I placed myself in this work, although the figures are stylised. It made me feel more anonymous. It made me feel integral to such an incredible network."
Join us for biweekly ekphrastic writing challenges. See why so many writers are hooked on ekphrasis! We feature some of the most accomplished, influential writers working today, and we also welcome emerging or first time writers and those who simply want to experience art in a deeper way or try something creative.
The prompt this time is Self-Portrait As One Of The Hare Witches, by Jane Burn. Deadline is February 17, 2023.
You can submit poetry, creative nonfiction, flash fiction, microfiction, or any other form creative writing you like. 1000 words max please.
1. Use this visual art prompt as a springboard for your writing. It can be a poem or short prose (fiction or nonfiction.) You can research the artwork or artist and use your discoveries to fuel your writing, or you can let the image alone provoke your imagination.
2. Write as many poems and stories as you like. Send only your best works or final draft, not everything you wrote down. (Please note, experimental formats are difficult to publish online. We will consider them but they present technical difficulties with web software that may not be easily resolved.) Please copy and paste your submission into the body of the email, even if you include an attachment such as Word or PDF.
3. There is no mandatory submission fee, but we ask you to consider a voluntary donation to show your support to the time, management, maintenance, and promotion of The Ekphrastic Review. It takes an incredible amount of time to curate the journal, read regular and contest submissions, etc. Paying all expenses out of pocket is also prohibitive. Thank you. A voluntary gift does not affect the selection process in any way.
4. USE THIS EMAIL ONLY.
Send your work to firstname.lastname@example.org. Challenge submissions sent to the other inboxes will most likely be lost as those are read in chronological order of receipt, weeks or longer behind, and are not seen at all by guest editors. They will be discarded. Sorry.
5.Include BURN CHALLENGE in the subject line.
6. Include your name and a brief bio. If you do not include your bio, it will not be included with your work, if accepted. Even if you have already written for The Ekphrastic Review or submitted other works and your bio is "on file" you must include it in your challenge submission. Do not send it after acceptance or later; it will not be added to your piece. Guest editors may not be familiar with your bio or have access to archives. We are sorry about these technicalities, but have found that following up, requesting, adding, and changing later takes too much time and is very confusing.
7. Late submissions will be discarded. Sorry.
8. Deadline is midnight EST, February 17, 2023.
9. Please do not send revisions, corrections, or changes to your poetry or your biography after the fact. If it's not ready yet, hang on to it until it is.
10. Selected submissions will be published together, with the prompt, one week after the deadline.
11. Due to the demands of the increasing volume of submissions, we do not send out sorry notices or yes letters. You will see what poetry and stories have been selected when the responses are posted one week after the deadline. Understand that we value your participation as part of our ekphrastic community, but we can only choose a handful of the many entries we receive.
12. A word on the selection process: we strive for a balance between rewarding regular participants and sharing the voices of writers who are new to our family. We also look for a variety of perspectives and styles, and a range of interesting takes on the painting. It is difficult to reproduce experimental formatting, so unfortunately we won't choose many with unusual spacing or typography.
13. By submitting to The Ekphrastic Review, you are also automatically joining our subscribers' list. Your submission is your permission. We don't send Spam and we don't send many emails- you will not receive forty-four emails a day! Our newsletter occasionally updates you on some of the challenges, news, contests, prize nominations, ekphrastic happenings, prompt ebooks, workshops, and more.
14. Rinse and repeat with upcoming ekphrastic writing challenges!
15. Please share this prompt with your writing groups, Facebook groups, social media circles, and anywhere else you can. The simple act of sharing brings readers to The Ekphrastic Review, and that is the best way to support the poets and writers on our pages!
16. Check this space every Friday for new challenges and selected responses, alternating weekly.
Tricia Marcella Cimera is a Midwestern Poet with a worldview. Her poems have appeared in various diverse journals online and in print. She has been a contributor to The Ekphrastic Review for several years and has learned to interpret art differently, more deeply because of the impact that ekphrastic seeing and writing has had on her. She lives, writes, despairs, and tries to hope in America. A cedar Poetry Box called The Fox Poetry Box is mounted on a post in her front yard.