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The Flapper Press Poetry Café Summer Poetry Contest Winners!

By Annie Newcomer:

"Poetry is a form of expression. Writing it lets us get out our feelings and thoughts on a subject while reading it encourages us to connect and find meaning in our experiences.

Poetry can have a positive impact on the social and emotional learning of children & adults."

—"Why Is Poetry Important?" Proud to be Primary


Before we announce the results of this year's Flapper Press Poetry Summer Contest, we feel that it is important to share that this was one of our closest competitions to date. Our chief editor lamented, "Wish that we had enough award money to give out even more stipends."

We received poems from all parts of the United States. We are grateful for the trust and the interest. We value the poets who come back each year to participate in our contests, as they elevate the quality of the work gathered. Flapper Press cares about each piece that is submitted.

As we continue to develop our online publication in the literary world, we will stay true to our original mission statement, which is to advance poetry through poet interviews, prompts, and theme-based contests and other creative ideas that we develop for the Flapper Press Poetry Café. Our intention is to become a home for the advanced writer as well as the emerging poet and to find ways to help our audience stay curious about poetry through the work we present. We hope to spark interest and continue to provide a way for poets and our audience to engage with the written word through a variety of unique opportunities.

A wise professor once shared with his student, "Ahhh, never forget to consider the audience." With each article we prepare on poetry, we understand the responsibility to provide pieces that will inform and excite our readers, because poetry is an opportunity to find hope and solace in this complex world that we find ourselves in today. Your participation both as a writer and a reader of Flapper Press helps us fulfill this mission.

Even though the three poems selected all used lines from John Updike's "June," notice the ways each poem demonstrates different moods and styles of poetry. Storytelling, imagery, and repetition are tools each poet uses differently to build to a place of deep emotion. Notice how the element of time and the recognition of the importance of how we use time is prevalent in each piece.

The contest guidelines were are follows:

1. Choose 2 lines from one of these 3 poems:

  • "June" by John Updike

  • "The Silken Tent" by Robert Frost

  • "In Summer Time" by Paul Lawrence Dunbar

2. Use the lines anywhere in your own poem.

3. Let us know the poem you used.

4. UNDERLINE the 2 lines you used.

5. The lines can be used anywhere in the poem.

6. The lines can be separated.

7. Send your submission and short bio to


One first-place winner is awarded $100.

One second-place winner is awarded $50.

One third-place winner is awarded $25.


Below is the poem on which our three winning poets based their work for our Flapper Press Poetry Café Summer 2022 Contest.

June by John Updike The sun is rich And gladly pays In golden hours, Silver days, And long green weeks That never end. School’s out. The time Is ours to spend. There’s Little League, Hopscotch, the creek, And, after supper, Hide-and-seek. The live-long light Is like a dream, and freckles come Like flies to cream.


Our Winners!

First Place:

If I Could Pause For a Moment

By Kristin Timmons

The trees sing me a song of strength and resilience

Wisdom and scars radiate through their veins Their branches reach out and beg me to listen If I could pause for a moment, I could take it all in.

The birds sing me a song of contentment and freedom

Journey and adventure radiate through their veins

Their voices call out and beg me to listen If I could pause for a moment, I could take it all in.

The ocean sings me a song of abundance and caution

Vastness and surrender radiate through her veins She runs towards my feet and begs me to listen If I could pause for a moment, I could take it all in.

The sun sings me a song of hope and forgiveness

Comfort and warmth radiate through her veins

She nudges my body and begs me to listen If I could pause for a moment, I could take it all in.

The stars sing me a song of mercy and beauty

Illumination and brilliance radiate through their veins

They captivate my eyes and beg me to listen If I could pause for a moment, I could take it all in.

The moon sings me a song of adjustment and stability

Perseverance and grace radiate through his veins His soul permeates me and begs me to listen If I could pause for a moment, I could take it all in.

My daughter sings me a song of life and its meaning

Love and connection radiate through her veins She shows me myself and begs me to listen I pause for a moment and I take it all in.

The awareness and emotion that come with this presence

Are all that I’ve needed to see that I’m whole A new day is dawning and its beauty delights me The live long light is like a dream The time is ours to spend.


Kristin Timmons & Delaney

Kristin Timmons lives in Santa Rosa, CA, and is currently a student at Santa Rosa Junior College, studying Human Services. She is also a stay-at-home mother who has always loved writing, reading, and poetry. Her two greatest poet inspirations are Bob Dylan and Maya Angelou.

"I love the way that writing makes me feel.

t helps me get thoughts and feelings out

that I may be unable to do so through speaking."


Second Place:

The Knowing

By Tom Squitieri

My throat wind is blowing chords

from the faint heart

to the portal of dreams,

come to me and show me

strength and beauty,

for it is there

to those blessed

with the sunshine of courage

Retreated from the world as much as possible,

I have found a smattering

of a new balance that helps in ways

not yet defined,

each day gives a void and a precipice trail beyond the moment

Bursts of brightness popping from new redoubts

In golden hours

Much like escape lights on the floor panels

Of an airplane

For now I am headed to better places

Hiking to her

Eager for our night noises

I want to dance on those steps

Wearing only one shoe

just like you do, and with you

We step boldly

Guided by the oasis birds

Where nothing is common about the grackle

Encouraged by red bellies and ruby throats

And special tufts

if you are genuine, you are always in tune

Soon to apricate

Go away, world.

When you see the green moon

And if the puzzlement lasts,

it is not for you

When you see it and immerse,

You are ready

and long green weeks


Shed the lorica

no need

To box the bet


Tom Squitieri

Tom Squitieri is a three-time winner of the Overseas Press Club and White House Correspondents’ Association awards for work as a war correspondent. His poetry appears in several publications and venues. He writes most of his poetry while parallel parking or walking his dogs, Topsie and Batman.


Third Place:


By Lynn Scozzari

Dreaming of root beer floats and lightening bugs

as they streak across the settling-into-black-sky

Piercing the veil.

Small orange smears swimming through dense air

The live-long night is like a dream

Crusty sleep lingers in the corners of our eyes at sunrise

We never fully awaken in July or August, those juicy summer months.

Only in September when the school bells ring again

and the long end-of-day shadows follow behind us

Playing catch-up

to the hopscotch game

we scrawled with chalk on the smoldering sidewalk

“So hot you could fry an egg,” the old folks said.

Our pastels no longer relevant – faded into the cement

Leaving only dust


Blown away by all too infrequent summer breezes.

Jasmine in bloom

Tickling my nose

Giddy, I am as a child.

The time is ours to spend

No quarters, credit cards or other currency

Just time and freedom.

Kick up your bare feet and let the fireflies shine.


Lynn Scozzari lives in Southern California with her husband, two dogs, and two cats, writing when the muse strikes (and she pays attention). Owning to her Midwestern roots, she often finds her writing hearkens back to her upbringing in a small Indiana town. Lynn’s poetry has been published in various journals and essays. She is a former editor of a city-style magazine (back when those were popular) and of a parenting publication when her (now adult son) was a wee lad.


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