On 3 July, our second anniversary, we announced a poetry competition to celebrate and today we can reveal the winning poem and the one to whom the laurels of victory are due! First, a huge thanks to all who entered and so joined in our celebrations here on the Working Title Blog. Every entry was read and appreciated. It was a tough gig but we found a winner!
Our winner is…
With runners up Ian Bristow and Mike van Horn
It was Timmy’s birthday and she had it all prepared:
A little celebration in the tiny house they’d shared.
She twisted paper ribbons, colored orange and cobalt blue,
Arranged the tiger lilies on a table set for two.
She nearly tripped on sneakers he’d been told to put away.
Nothing new for Susan. She tripped ‘most every day.
She set up thirteen candles on a cake of gold and blue.
Ugly but his favorites so what was she to do?
Wrapped presents she had scrimped to buy waited on a chair
She bought them all so long ago, she’d forgotten what was there.
The clock chimed five o’clock and her heart began to pound.
She filled her glass with vodka and drank most of it down.
Thirteen years, she thought and wept, the years that he’d been gone.
Thirteen years he’d lived and now he’d been dead just as long.
Time healed hearts, they told her, e’en hearts with such a hole.
She wanted to get on with life, but felt a hollow soul.
For thirteen years, he’d been her life, the center of her heart
Cut down running home that day from playing in the park.
An errant car, a cold phone call, as she’d finished with his cake
And burned his favorite dinner of a rare and juicy steak.
She didn’t have to scrimp now. Her time was now her own.
She didn’t have to cook for two or share the single phone.
She didn’t have to pick up clothes or tell him to come home.
But damn her life was empty all these years she’d been alone.
Although Stephanie Barr is a slave to three children and a slew of cats, she actually leads a double life as a part-time novelist and full-time rocket scientist. People everywhere have learned to watch out for fear of becoming part of her stories. Beware! You might be next! If you enjoyed this poem she has a book of poetry out too – Musings of a Nascent Poet. Stephanie’s latest book is a fur-tastic collection of cat stories Pussycats Galore.
Keep an eye out for Mike’s and Ian’s poems appearing on the blog this weekend!