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Flapper Press Poetry Café 2023 Autumn Poetry Contest Winners!

Updated: Dec 3, 2023

By Flapper Press Poetry Café:


The Flapper Press Poetry Café is happy to announce the five winners of our 2023 Autumn "Poetry in a Snapshot" Contest!


Thank you to all the poets who sent us their wonderful work. We were thrilled to receive so many submissions to the contest. It's very exciting, but makes it so much harder to pick just five! Please keep writing poetry, and check back often for more contests.


If you are interested in sending in your work for consideration through our regular submissions route, check out our guidelines, and send us your poetry and writing!


Here were the rules for the "Poetry in a Snapshot" Contest:


1. Explore your world. Take an interesting original photo.


2. Write a poem inspired by your photo.


3. Send both your photo and poem to: info@flapperpress.com



Here are the five winners, in alphabetical order.

Thank you and enjoy!


 

Shamik Banerjee

Photo by Shamik Banerjee

The Jalebi Maker


Jalebis, ochreous, round and tiny, are aswim

in seething oil. The giant wok (whose rim's like tar)


waits patiently to soak up all the yellow batter


spiralling from the lota that's filled to the brim.

He takes this daily occupation as a matter

that calls for in-depth know-how. His mind and eyes are


glued to the art. The earsplitting and constant chatter


of crowds beside his shop imply they've come to him


to have this tantalising sweet. In the bazaar,


he is a luminary. People from afar,

however rich or poor, throng at his pastel, slim,


and antiquated store to revel in a platter

of chenna Jalebis. Although a megastar,

(he's been approached by auteurs for a feature film)

he scoffs at Vainglory; if someone tries to flatter

him, he says 'thank you', mannerly, wears the same dim-


pink chambray, keeps the middle-parted, hot oil-spattered


coiffeur each day, and chews on betel leaves while hymn-


ing to Lord Krishna (this keeps his vigour unmarred).

I queried once, "Where are you from, Sir?" in that clatter.


He kept the skimmer, spat the paan, washed up each limb,


and answered, "Sitamarhi district, Old Bihar."


Word Meanings: Jalebi: an Indian sweet dish Lota: a pot Bazaar: a marketplace Chenna: unripened curd cheese

Krishna: a Hindu goddess

Paan: flavoured betel leaf

Sitamarhi: a district (famous for its jalebis) in the Indian state of Bihar

Bihar: a state in India.

 

Shamik Banerjee is a poet from India. When he is not writing, he can be found strolling the hills surrounding his homestead. His poems have appeared in Fevers of the Mind, Lothlorien Poetry Journal, and Westward Quarterly, among others.


 

Angela Carole Brown

Photo by: Angela Carole Brown

Autumn Haiku


leaf burnished red nestled among the fallen browns

prettiest girl at the dance

 

Angela Carole Brown is a writer, musician, and artist. She won the North Street Book Prize in Literary Fiction (2018) for Trading Fours and has been honored with a DigiFest Temecula Award, Buddha International Film Festival Award, & Indo Global International Film Festival Award for The Richest Girl in the World. To read more about the poet, visit her website here.


 


Pat Daneman

Photo by: Pat Daneman

Bread Is Silent, Seed Talks

Falling like snow,

falling like starlight,

like shot, like the jitter of lanterns

coming across fields from miles away. Seed

talks to me, says do not let the maple’s

brilliance fool you, the beggar roses opening their hands.

Some knife has shortened

the track of the sun. Do not let the soft skin of the moon distract you.

Winter is next door. The feeders hang from the locust’s lowest branch, swing in the wind,

calling the finches, the grackles,

the mourning doves, the cardinal pair. Bread

crumbles from my hands,

spreads over the ground with the silence of a father. Seed talks to me like a mother. Says you are lucky if your house is warm. Says come to the feast— the wind gusts colder every day.

 

Pat Daneman’s recent poetry appears in Poet’s Touchstone, Lakeshore Review,

Gyroscope, and Wild Roof. Her collection, After All, was first runner up for the 2019 Thorpe-

Menn Award. She is author of a chapbook, Where the World Begins, and co-librettist of the

oratorio, "We, the Unknown." She lives in Candia, NH. If you would like to read more about Pat Daneman, visit her website here.


 

Brooke Herter James

Photo by: Brooke Herter James

A Boy with a Treasure Box

sees not the clouds

nor the cows nor his mother nor his brother—

He sees only the pebbles of gold

that everyone else left behind.

 

Brooke Herter James lives in a very old house in Vermont with her husband, two donkeys, a mess of chickens, and a dog. She is the author of one children’s picture book, three chapbooks, and one poetry/prose/photography collection. She is the recipient of the 2018 Hunger Mountain's Katherine Paterson Best Picture Book Manuscript Award and has had selected poems appear in PoemTown Vermont, Mountain Troubador Poetry Journal, Orbis, Kansas City Voices, Tulip Tree, Review and Rattle as well as the online publications Bloodroot Literary, Poets Reading The News, New Verse News, Flapper Press, Typishly, Writing in a Woman's Voice, and Heartland. She is honored to have been chosen as a finalist in the Poetry Society of Vermont's 2018 National Poetry Contest. Brooke can be found on Facebook or at brookejamesbooks.com.


 

Susanna Lang

Photos by: Susanna Lang


Mer des Rochers Sauve

These upthrust towers of stone could only have been shaped by water

or gods. You who lived here, in houses

whose stones you set in place yourself

between the towers, you knew

water was a god. Your houses

unroofed now that you have been gone

so long, open to the rain when it comes.

Rain fell last week, and even today

water pools in shallow bowls

worn into the stone, despite the drought.

You terraced the hill, grew cherry trees,

peach trees, olives, vines. The twisty paths

with their hidden drops kept you safe

from attack. Still you left, moved down

by the river. The stone protected

but was unforgiving. No false steps

allowed. After a time, its demands

wore on you, like water on stone.

 

Susanna Lang divides her time between Chicago and Uzès, France. Her most recent chapbook, Like This, was released in 2023 (Unsolicited Books), along with her translations of poems by Souad Labbize, My Soul Has No Corners (Diálogos Books). Her third full-length collection of poems, Travel Notes from the River Styx, was published in 2017 by Terrapin Books. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in such publications as The Common, December magazine, Asymptote, American Life in Poetry, Mayday, Rhino Reviews, and The Slowdown. More information available at www.susannalang.com.

 


Presenting a wide range of poetry with a mission to promote a love and understanding of poetry for all. We welcome submissions for compelling poetry and look forward to publishing and supporting your creative endeavors. Submissions may also be considered for the Pushcart Prize. Please review our Guidelines before submitting!


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