WD Poetic Form Challenge: Cascade Poem Winner

These challenges always surprise me with how poets attack the forms. They also surprise me with the quality of the writing. If you haven’t yet, you should check out the entries for the cascade poem challenge; some great writing with a fairly relaxed poetic form.

Click here to read all the entries in the Comments.

The winner of the cascade poem challenge is Marian O’Brien Paul with her masterful poem “The Cycle of Seasons: Discovered.” Congratulations, Marian!

Here’s Marian’s winning poem:

The Cycle of Seasons: Discovered, by Marian O’Brien Paul

A child, flinging wide the screen door,
sifts the early morning air, separating
apple blossom scent from fragrant pear.

Suddenly aware the perfume is familiar,
sifting memory for where she met it before–
this child, flinging wide the screen door

drifts back through winter frost and lost
tree leaves past summer’s lush foliage,
sifting the early morning air, separating

the bouquet of fruit blossom-thick air,
reliving last year when she first divided
apple blossom scent from fragrant pear.


Here’s the complete Top 10 list:

  1. “The Cycle of the Seasons: Discovered,” by Marian O’Brien Paul
  2. “Gone Soon,” by ann malaspina
  3. “Mi piache (I like it),” by Linda H.
  4. “Surprise,” by Daniel Ari
  5. “Heron,” by Margaret Crawford
  6. “In Order,” by Karen Legg
  7. “Signs,” by Michelle Hed
  8. “My Name Is Boo,” by Tracy Davidson
  9. “Driving to Dripping Springs,” by Maril Crabtree
  10. “I rode a poem…,” by Jacqueline Hallenbeck

Congratulations to everyone who made the Top 10 list. With each challenge, I notice an increase in the quality of competition. It gets harder and harder to make that list. So great job!

That said, thank you to everyone who participated! I’m not going to give names, but there were several poets who came very close to cracking the Top 10–both the usual suspects and some new names. Be sure to watch this month (and hopefully this week) for the next WD Poetic Form Challenge.


Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer


Marian’s winning poem is slated to appear in the Poetic Asides column in the February 2011 issue of Writer’s Digest. To learn more about this great magazine for writers, click here.

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16 thoughts on “WD Poetic Form Challenge: Cascade Poem Winner

  1. Brian Slusher

    Great choice for #1–a beautiful poem, Marion! Sorry to see "For Sale" by Moyer didn’t make the list, but that’s what makes the poetry business so interesting: such divergent tastes. Congrats to all who were recognized!

  2. Linda Hofke

    I just went through and read the poems again. Good poems, even those not listed in the top ten.

    Karen Legg, I like your cascade poem very much. Great work!

  3. Karen Legg

    Marian, your poem steals my breath. Congratulations, it’ll be great to read see this honored in WD.
    I’m shocked to see my name on the list – this is the first work I’ve posted. Thanks very much.
    See you all in the PAD lists ~

  4. Amy Barlow Liberatore

    Congratulations to all. Marian, stellar poem!

    So please that so many regular contributors are on the list, and also pleased to get to know new faces, who I hope will return and give voice to our blog more often. Loved the diversity of poetry on this challenge, one which intimidated me so much I did not bother to try it.

    Brave souls, all. (Daniel, Jac, Karen, whom I know best, you are close to my heart always!)

    Peace and happy PAD kickoff, Amy

  5. Linda Hofke

    Wow! I am honored to be included. Thank you, Robert.

    Michelle, I love being in a writing group with you and am so glad you made the list. I loved this poem from the first time reading and still love it.

    Marion, this is a beautifully written poem and deserving of the top position. Congratulations.

    And congrats to all the other winners.


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