Many thanks to each and every one of you who participated in the Lucky 7 Ekphrastic Marathon in July!
The marathon was an idea we borrowed from Meg Pokrass, and it was an experiment, and an experience. What a wild and intense outpouring of creativity it was!
The ebook anthology of selected and winning entries is available for free download below. Please, please, please share this on your social media and send a copy to everyone you know. Tell the world about this journal and about our amazing writers.
It is now the moment of truth. Our judges, Meg Pokrass for flash fiction, and Brent Terry, for poetry, have chosen the winners.
The judges read the submissions from documents with no names.
Please join me in congratulating the winners!
A Life of Drowning (first place): Nan Wigington
The Fist They Make: Karen Walker
Underground: Bayveen O’Connell
I enjoyed reading the entries after having experienced the creative benefits of writing marathons myself. The stories I read were energetic and original, and I found it hard to select only one winner, but ultimately, “A Life of Drowning” won me over with its magical qualities.
The late Russell Edson stated that prose poetry can create “a beautiful new animal.” “A Life of Drowning,” taken from the painting The Fisherman’s Cottage, shows the reader three moments in which a woman’s fate hangs in the balance. There are three “drownings,” but I won’t ruin the story by saying too much… The result delights us with the wildness of life’s uncertainty. There is a familiar and uncomfortable feeling about this story that is much like life itself, filled with weird surprises. Tapping gently into the all-too- familiar spectrum of a woman’s roles as a mother, wife, and daughter, the story addresses the archetypal problem of being “assigned” roles in life that few of us are truly cut out for. The author refuses to provide answers because answers, like the weather itself, are simply not to be trusted. This is utterly fantastic, dreamy writing. The strange, fable-like experience builds to a sad and beautiful conclusion. Plunged into a fairytale universe, the lines between fantasy and reality disappear.
My Other Hand is a Tuba (first place): D. Dina Friedman
Ex-voto for Washerwomen: Laurel Benjamin
The Nuns' Complaints: Laurel Benjamin
What a delight it was to read (and re-read, aaaand re-read) these poems. And what a challenge to narrow them down to three finalists and eventually one winner. The poems showed quality throughout, a remarkable range of formal inventiveness, and a rich array of interpretations of just what ekphrasis means anyway. From spelunking the original artwork and reporting back about what lies beneath the surface, to using the original as a launching pad to explore new ideas or the writer's own psychic landscape, these poems stretched the limits of what ekphrastic poetry can mean and do, and they pointed toward new frontiers in the form. I am honoured and inspired to have experienced them.
Additional congratulations to those whose work was selected for the ebook anthology.
7 Aphorisms, by Saad Ali
The Passage, by Claire Bateman
After the Lantern Parade, by Roy Beckemeyer
Ex-voto for Washerwomen, by Laurel Benjamin
The Nuns' Complaints, by Laurel Benjamin
The Passage, by Betsy Holleman Burke
Art Walk Haibun, by Caitlin M.S. Buxbaum
The Lantern Parade, by Michael Caines
Headlines, by Kate Copeland
Ghosts of Sakura, by Karen FitzGerald
My Other Hand is a Tuba, by D. Dina Friedman
Magic or Prayer, by Kortney Garrison
O, the Raised Hand, by Karen George
A Prayer to Selene, by Gabby Gilliam
Ready to Go, by Cathy Hollister
Nun in an Egg, by Lynne Kemen
Fjord Summer, by Norbert Kovacs
Diamonds for Stars, by Jackie Langetieg
Recounting Hands, by Amy Marques
Mirror Lake, by Jena Martin
How These Shades of Blue, by Linda McQuarrie-Bowerman
Shall We Dance, by Linda McQuarrie-Bowerman
Haiku, by Lisa Molina
Beyond the Lantern Parade, by Kim Murdock
The Fisherman’s Wife, by Bayveen O’Connell
Underground, by Bayveen O’Connell
Praise, by Amy Phimister
The Art of War, by Aline Soules
Selected for Elimination (X-ed out), by Renée Szostek
Hands, by Alarie Tennille
Family Legend, by Deborah Trowbridge
Torso Fruit, by Fran Turner
Wheel of the Future, by Lauren Voeltz
The Fist They Make, by Karen Walker
A Life of Drowning, by Nan Wigington
Ghost Sequence, by Cullen Wisenhunt
Effigy Hand by Hopewell Culture 100BC-400AD, by Catherine Young
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