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New(s) & Noteworthy

The results of the 12th annual Broadside Contest are in. Judge Jaime Robles has selected “To the Fog,” by Terry Lucas, as the winner. He will receive an edition of 50 broadsides of his poem, designed and printed at Littoral Press. Honorable mentions go to Denise Leto for “Comforted in the Deep Duress of Time,” Meryl Natchez for “Thinking about Einstein,” and Emily Teitsworth for “Seeds.” They will each receive a broadside of their choice from the press. Congratulations to these poets! And thanks to all who entered this year’s contest.


To the Fog
Terry Lucas

And then you wake up one morning to the fog
surrounding your house like a heaven,
like the first time you drank a whole bottle
of white wine alone. You get dressed for your walk
down the path that you walk on each day.
You look to the horizon, the shouting
sun now more like moon’s soft hum. One muted tone
behind sky’s veil. You notice the lichen-
covered stones greeting each step, the geometry
of downed limbs scratching at low tide,
the snowy egret you surprise, plumed head
turned on its side, sweeping the mudflats, improvising
a way to catch breakfast in suffused light—
all of this and more, normally hidden in plain sight.
But an orchestra’s warming up behind the curtain:
commuters leaning on shrill horns, distant
sirens rising, the engines of this world
revving up their clear intent to perform
something short of a miracle. O fog
of morning, hover in the hollows of this day,
remain in its low places, to rise up again
when we need not more, but less.


Comforted in the Deep Duress of Time
Denise Leto

Accidents of weather unboxed in a truck of wings
and the small pebbled letters under scattering feet.

I sound different near a distant bridge.
The skyline pretends to be a crane

it could pick us up and pretend
to be a kind tongue, an emptied tongue.

An egret with a bent neck sleeping near a low metal sign
with old bullet holes makes a catastrophe of shore.

The words “Sea Lion” might be a monster or a caress or both.
The ramshackle jetty of an urban port in colloquy can’t help.

Slivers of rag and cellophane move across the sand like a crab
and the lights coming on across the channel.


Thinking about Einstein while Waiting for the Big Blue Bus
Meryl Natchez

how it is that the light at the corner of Pico and Lincoln that spills so generously over sidewalk blue metal chairs five lanes with their cross-stitch of traffic can be “discrete packets, discontinuous, distributed across space” how could a mind on a series of ordinary mornings forkfuls and mouthfuls and earfuls deconstruct the everywhereness of light into microscopic moving parts some of which only exist when they bump into each other how could he gaze at the golden abundance spilling over Ulm and Munich and Pavia and think no not a blanket not a swath but a gathering of particles that meander somewhat predictably through the bent universe to bump against us in leaps and bounces while in Germany the Jews begin to stitch yellow stars on their sleeves and next to me at the bus stop mostly Hispanic faces and the light streaming over everyone


Seeds
Emily Teitsworth

We are tall as mountains, tiny as seeds,
a lattice climbing the wall and flowers on the lattice,
and bare branches reaching out like skeleton hands
grasping for the end of winter.

Outside Mill Valley we walked a loop. The fog
was coming in and rising, only a few tall buildings
still visible beyond the Bay. Sita kept up with us,
limping a little towards the end. Still
she’s still with us. We’re still with each other.

The mustard blossoms are pushing their tendrils
across the trail — still, or already. The hills move
with us, shrinking back in a long out-breath, releasing
into the ocean’s vast, briny refuge, water boiling away
cold and slow for another million years. No one will sing of us,
or eulogize, or remember us then, but today
we are still here, and already disappearing.