Congratulations to the winners of the “Out of this World Space Poetry Contest”! All of the submissions were wonderful and fun to read, and the winners were determined by voting and review by the Board of Editors. Thank you all for your participation and for making it a very tough decision!
1st Place: “Phoenix” by Lee Friedman
2nd Place: “Parallax” by Annie Share
3rd Place: “Zodiac” by Sam Marlinga
Check out the galactic winning pieces below…
Lee is a sophomore studying computer science who enjoys dancing, writing, and staring into the empty void that surrounds the insignificant planet we call home.
Blank blackness pushing against her
Suffocating on abandoned air
Age has twisted her
Warping her form like shiny metal clay
Time’s big hands on her frail soul
Pained groans echo through her
Hulls creaking, pipes squeaking
Her whole body aches like a bruise
And she bleeds a steady stream Continue reading
If you’ve ever been to a creative writing event at Clark, you know Bruno Lieto. He brings his huge smile and heartbreaking poetry to every open mic night. We chatted about his very first poem, stage fright, and the lost art of handwritten poetry in this month’s Clark Writer of the Month.
LB: Do you remember the very first poem you ever wrote?
BL: I do! It was in seventh grade. We were learning about the Holocaust and had to put ourselves in the shoes of someone that survived. We could write a paper, do a slideshow, and I chose to do three poems. The things my teacher said afterwards made me keep writing.
LB: One of my favorite things about you is that whenever I see you, you have like five new poems. Where does your inspiration come from? Continue reading
The following collection of short, insect-themed poems is Sebastian Baker’s “way of trying to dramatize the lives of creatures that we typically think of as insignificant.” He bestows tone, personality, and sensational stories upon everything from a firefly to a roach through vivid scenes that turn their quiet existence into something thrilling and extraordinary. The alliteration and careful diction used to craft these poems made them wonderful pieces to perform out loud at our last creative writing forum. Read the compilation below.
F. Sebastian Baker
I see them sip sweet nectar
And crunch crispy greens.
With envious venom in my gut
I chew my bitter brew
Though I hate the taste.
I know I’m slow and soft and fat
We all are easy treats
But when the hunter hungers
My pestilence protects me.
I’ll imbibe my bitter bile
To survive when others die.
One day I’ll sleep on silken sheets
Inside a coffin, a cocoon
Broken down, dissolved, digested
To be reborn anew.
And all shall call me Monarch. Continue reading
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live your life and then be forced to do it all again? This piece was performed by Emily Buza at our Love Poetry Open Mic, and it presents an interesting take on the mystical world of C. S. Lewis’s Narnia.
Did it hurt?
Not just being taken from your home,
your kingdom and castle left to rot,
But in all the little ways,
the mundane moments.
Did those hurt, too?
The skinned knees and splinters
from tumbling out of a wardrobe
weren’t the worst of it,
Did getting dressed the next day hurt?
Seeing a child in the mirror
when yesterday you were a queen.
Opening your trunk to find
blouses and schoolgirl skirts
instead of your gowns and cloaks.
Touching your flat chest and knowing
that it will take half a decade before you can
again fill out a corset
that you have already worn for years.
In her first ever Clark Writes submission, Kaitlyn Lindtvedt explores pain and twisted relationships in her poem “Flare.”
I’m eliding –
– Engrossed in my memories-
-Stoking a misery
Loping inside of me.
The knotted ties to which you cling
When all the world is bleeding
Through your heart.
Impressionistic, isn’t it?
Satisfying hopeless whims
While soothing scars.
Fall. Continue reading
In this incredible piece of struggle and strength, poet Maddie Thomas portrays the battle many face against themselves and the memories held within.
(Trigger Warning: Eating Disorder/Self Harm)
To Ana: At 2 AM On A Wednesday
i have pulled at my skin
and wanted a way out.
my bones can cut diamonds.
my hips are pushing sharp at the walls of my flesh
you can count
every vertebrae in my spine
each rib is a knife
push out, push out, suck in, suck in-
when did my body become a gun?
the faint outline of the word “ugly” is carved into my thigh.
the result of a razor and words.
tell your daughter she is disgusting. tell her she is not good enough. she will always believe you.
i remember the way your words dripped like gasoline. i remember. i remember.
i think of the smell of perfume and alcohol
when my fingers are down my throat. Continue reading
Talented poet Madi Carleton brings together feelings of nostalgia, freedom, and humid summer drives in this piece we hope brings you similar thoughts on Valentine’s Day.
“Remembering Sunday” and Other Songs I’ve Forgotten
We moved so fast back then,
Racing through those summer nights.
The sound blasted
And we screamed with it
Freedom under curfew,
Friday nights we’d fill our toes
Our mouths with kisses
Stolen from another’s property,
And race away up the highway.
The first day of my nineteenth year
You bought the lighter,
And told me I would change.
You were right,
Speeding toward midnight,
But I opened the window
And let the words fly out
Like broken glass
Lining a country road.
I couldn’t tell you
You saved my life
Because I was still too young.
So that night and for several more
I stayed steeped in teenage innocence,
Let it fill the car
Until we were soaking in it,
Swimming in it.
HOUSTON, WE HAVE A CONTEST. Clark Writes is now accepting submissions for our Spring Semester Writing Contest! This semester our contest will be themed around space poetry. Your poem doesn’t have to specifically be about space, but should include space-related themes, imagery, or concepts. Take the prompt as you will, the creative possibilities are vast. We’re sure that this will allow your poetry to really take off. And if you’ve never written poetry, we encourage you to explore your creative potential and let your mind expand. You bet URANUS this is going to be a fun contest!
If you have any questions about the contest please reach out to email@example.com or someone on the editorial board. We’re looking forward to discovering what sorts of space poetry the Clark community has to offer. We’re sure they’ll beam us up. The top three will be put in orbit on the blog and we’ll send some cash money your Milky Way.
Good luck, space explorers!
-The Clark Writes Board of Editors
February is a busy month for Clark writers! In the next few weeks, Clark Writes is teaming up with other groups on campus, including SLP and Diversability, to bring some amazing experiences and workshops to a Clark campus near you. We will be having an open mic about love and loss, a workshop to advance our poetry skills, and a performance by the viral slam poet sensation, Neil Hilborn, with a chance to join him onstage as his opening act! See below for details…
Wednesday February 8th: Open for Neil Hilborn Poetry Workshop – 2-4pm – ASEC Room 313
Clark Writes and Diversability want to give you the chance to be the opening act for NEIL HILBORN! Come to this workshop to work on your poetry skills, write a new piece, or just get some opinions and practice on old ones.
Saturday February 11th: Poetry Open Mic (Love and Breakups) – 8:30pm – The Grind
Do you have a special Valentine? Are you looking to use your poetry skills to sweep someone of their feet? Or are you in the corner smashing heart-shaped cookies with you feet out of rage? All of the above makes for some great poetry. Come to this open mic with your best love or breakup poems and feel free to eat your feelings while you’re there (SLP and Clark Writes).
Tuesday February 14th: Performance by Slam Poet Neil Hilborn – 7pm – Jefferson 320
(DRUM ROLL PLEASE!) Who better to be your Valentine than famed slam poet, Neil Hilborn? The performance, provided by Diversability, will include opening acts by Clark students and will make you laugh, cry, and think about mental illness and many more topics worth writing about. If you want to brush up on your slam or learn a bit more about our special guest, check out Button Poetry on Youtube or Neil’s latest book, Our Numbered Days.
We hope to see you at all these awesome events! Sometimes it’s great to be busy!
Lots of people assume that all writers are English or arts majors. But this month’s Clark Writer of the Month is actually a Physics major who writes 300 words for his novel each day. He chats with Laura Barker about the inspiration for his novel, the struggles of writer’s block, and the fantasy genre. Read more below!
fine image of classic 3d newton cradle background
LB: So, tell me about the book that you’re writing.
NF: Well, I’ve attempted to write a couple of different books. I try to stay in the genre of science fiction/fantasy, and that hasn’t worked out for me in the past couple years. But the biggest part of a novel I’ve written was about a city where it’s legally required to wear a mask.