(the judges of the 2016 Poetry Super Highway Poetry Contest)
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M. Brett Gaffney
M. Brett Gaffney, originally from Houston, Texas, holds an MFA in Poetry from Southern Illinois University and edits art and poetry for Gingerbread House. Her poems have appeared in Exit 7, Penduline, Permafrost, Devilfish Review, Still: the Journal, Fruita Pulp, museum of americana, BlazeVOX, and Zone 3, among others. Her chapbook, Feeding the Dead, is forthcoming in 2016 from Porkbelly Press. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with her partner and their dog, Ava, and works across the river in northern Kentucky as a library associate, promoting poetry whenever she can.
The following work is Copyright © 2016, and owned by M. Brett Gaffney and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
Wandering pup—devil dog, heart full of smoke,
Beast of reckoning, of judgment, rests at the crossroads
Red-eyed stray trots in the rain, looks into houses,
Some day he hopes a pair of hands
One day, he thinks, they will wash the blood
The steel and wooden
The ground remembers
Our knuckles worn white on rusty
This field seems too small
After you left in October
Afterwards the lights
Helen Townsend grew up in Fort Scott, Kansas, has lived in different spots around the world, and now finds herself in Indianapolis. If she were independently wealthy, she would spend her days hopping planes, practicing yoga, writing poetry, going for runs, and saving all the animals in the world. Because she is not independently wealthy, and has a short attention span, Helen has done many things over the years—taught English to speakers of other languages, taught high school English, taught yoga, coordinated the Indiana State Refugee Health Program, to name a few. Currently, she is a TB Nurse Case Manager.
The following work is Copyright © 2016, and owned by Helen Townsend and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
Forgiving the Enemy
The walnut must have just fallen
Your First Red Carpet Gig
He is beautiful.
He says archeologists use
The Decay of Before
Analog tape can only hold onto sound for so long.
We become instructionless.
Then it’s like a tennis game
Trish Hopkinson has always loved words—in fact, her mother tells everyone she was born with a pen in her hand. She has two chapbooks Emissions and Pieced Into Treetops and has been published in several anthologies and journals, including Stirring, Chagrin River Review, and The Found Poetry Review. Hopkinson is co-founder of a local poetry group, Rock Canyon Poets. She is a product director by profession and resides in Utah with her handsome husband and their two outstanding children. You can follow her poetry adventures at http://trishhopkinson.com/.
The following work is Copyright © 2016, and owned by Trish Hopkinson and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
Wouldn’t a flyswatter be easier
Bare legs stuck to the vinyl seats
on our way to Pioneer Drive-in.
like silver fish in projector light
and stained pillows to cushion our ribs
on the whitewashed boards—
We dreamt of maturity and sophistication,
thumping the ceiling from inside
and teens danced in the moonlight.
originally published in Drunk Monkeys
Suburban, but where
flaky paint facades and weedy
There should be religion here—
Gospel is a thick fog, but only
no matter how low parents set
it won’t be enough to keep
whiskey in your belly good,
to take notice, to be different.
squeezing through a crevice,
and cigarettes from C-stores,
easy to coax a ride from
a boy in the vacant lot,
who lived in the mint-green
and dies in his attic room
Some of us expect
…………originally published in Stirring:A Literary Collection