Monday, July 31, 2006

What Inspires You? New Poetry Contest

Baskin's Baird

On the lawns I anticipate
a mewing catbird perhaps
or a worm-hunting robin;

thus this is not the bird I expected,
the bronze of Baird, the naturalist,
overtowering lush tropical foliage
--a stern, upright long-
bearded visage encountered

on my trek this damp morning
to another hard day of editing.
I sniff a rain-drenched gardenia
step over flooded paths to study

Spencer Fullerton Baird, rendered
aloof in the artist's conception
of an uptight Victorian prof; and I squint
closer at the plinth, read:

"Opus Baskin 1976." Yes! The artist for Ted
Hughes' Crow! But somehow

like the stuffed avians Baird collected
not the trickster ruffian Crow, still--

O Baird! Welcome this damp work-
day amid the jungle of palms and frangipani!

Christopher T. George

  • Leonard Baskin's statue of Spencer Fullerton Baird (1823-1887),

  • second Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution,
    in its original location when unveiled in 1978.

  • Studies of Baird and Crow by Leonard Baskin (1922-2000).

  • What inspires you? Tell me in a poem of thirty lines or less, any form. Send your entries to me at by midnight on Thursday, August 31, Eastern time. Winners will be published here and first prize winner also receives a copy of the CD of the Charlotte production of highlights from the musical by composer Erik Sitbon and myself, "Jack The Musical: The Ripper Pursued." Good luck!

    Saturday, July 15, 2006

    Adjustments by Mr. Bolton

    The world's a precarious and perplexing place,
    getting more treacherous by the day: Is this
    why our new U.N. Ambassador keeps adjusting
    his glasses over his "Got Milk?" moustache?

    Christopher T. George

    Desert Moon Review Summer Contest Results

    Results of the Desert Moon Review summer contest results can be read here. The judge was Sachi Nag, who has just been named a fellow editor with me at Writer's Block. First place was Jude Goodwin with "With your dry lips"; Second place was Fred Longworth with "Craters from the Sun"; and third was David Benson with "Inanna Whispers to Her Sister."

    The theme was to write a poem about one of the following or a similar angle on the earth's resources: 'Earth without electricity' or 'Earth without oil' or 'Earth without Water' -- that is, thje poet had to use his or her imagination to envision our Earth without some essential element. What would life be like then? How would we survive?

    Well done, Jude, Fred, and David. The three winning poems are to be published in the summer issue of Crescent Moon Journal edited by Mustansir Dalvi.