Thursday, November 11, 2021

November 12

Ahhhhhhhh, Friday.

Thank you, Matt, at Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme for hosting this week's round-up. It's fun watching your stack of published books grow taller and taller.

I'm home from my travels and looking forward to the holidays. Being in Williamsburg last week reminded me to invite you to Virginia's annual poetry contest. 

The Poetry Society of Virginia annual poetry contest is open to all. Just a few well-marked categories are strictly for Society members and/or Virginia residents. There is a small fee for each entry. Or, one can join the society for the cost of submitting seven poems.

#18 is sponsored by the Williamsburg Poetry Guild and is open to all.
A sense of Place Urquhart Memorial.
"Places— manmade, natural, personal, or historical— inform poetry with the power to evoke the past and transcend the present. Any form. Any subject. 48 line limit. Awards: $50, $30, $20."

Below is the 3rd place winner of the 2021 Cenie Moon Prize, a category for a poem of any form about a woman or, women with a 48 line limit.

Rowing Lessons


Remember, little sister

when Mom taught us
how to row together?


We took turns

settling into the dinghy’s center seat

trussed up in orange life jackets.


She showed us how to grip,

brace against  the oarlocks,

bend forward

dipping oars  into the water--

     just a little bit

before pulling.


Snapshots collected of us laughing

concentrating on synchronizing,

plunging too deep

pulling us right off our seats.


Remember that time you breathed, look up

as a pair of blue herons 

flew over

rowing wingbeats

so harmonious

that today we 

wear gold necklaces 

with heron pendants 

rowing through

our lives

bracing, dipping, pulling--

space for our sisterhood

between our oars.

(c) Linda Mitchell 2021

The deadline for the PSV contest is January 19th, Edgar Allen Poe's birthday. Good luck!

The Poetry Society of Virginia

Hamish and I spent some time thinking about the oxen of yesteryear and now while we were in Williamsburg. And, he reminded me to post last week's ox poem. Both poems are on his padlet.


  1. What a lovely poem, Linda! Congrats!
    The Poetry Society of Virginia has a cool logo. Thanks for letting us know about their contests :)

  2. Linda, I am so thrilled for you. Congratulations! Your poem is filled with such a beautiful memory and descriptive imagery, like, flew over/rowing wingbeats. I also like the way your rowing experience connects to a broader theme of life with a sister. Thanks for sharing the contest information.

  3. Congratulations, Linda! A well-deserved award, as this is so beautiful and thoughtful, and full of sibling love.

  4. I assume this is about you & your sister, Linda. What a loving memory you've written for your sister, and for sure for you. Thanks for the contest info, too. Enjoy being home this weekend!

  5. Congrats, Linda, and thanks for passing on the contest info. Also enjoyed reading about Eddie and Dylan on Hamish's padlet. Cool photo of them!!

  6. Congratulations on the poem, and what fun that you got to share a moment with the Williamsburg oxen!

  7. Wait. Wait. Wait. Linda!!! Congratulations. I have this bad habit of jumping straight in and reading the poems - then going back to read the post. I was already in love with your poem. And then I read your cucumber-cool reference to it in your post. Go you!!!! So excited for you. And so deserving! Because your poem is exquisite and your sister surely cried, when she read it. (That last stanza just flows smooth as melting butter.💙)

  8. This poem is so evocative, with the bending, dipping, pulling, of the oars. It made me think of my sister what it felt like to play with her. Lovely.

  9. Oh, what a sweet sister connection your poem shares. I love that you wear necklaces with the heron. So beautiful. Congratulations on winning a prize in this category of women this year. And thank you for sharing the details of the Poetry Society of Virginia contest with all of us.

  10. Let's laud Linda! Well done to you. Your poem possesses a gentle beauty, unfolding gently down the page while capturing a shared experience.

  11. Oh, I loooooove this poem, full of muscle, timing and golden connection. Congratulations on your well-earned win, and thank you for sharing the contest details with us instead of keeping Virginia to yourself!

  12. I love the rhythmic poem about rowing that includes the Heron's beats. Thanks for the referral about the contest. Congratulations to you for a beautiful poem about sisters, learning, and nature. Carol from The Apples in My Orchard!

  13. Wow, Linda, congratulations. And thank you for the invite to submit to this contest. I am going to meander and see what Hamish is up to.

  14. Your "Rowing Lessons" is a lovely, moving story-poem. I like the weaving in and out you created with your lines following the movement of water, your repeat of rowing, and the bond you created in your closing lines,
    "space for our sisterhood
    between our oars."
    And this line from your "Living in a Museum Means" is wonderful,
    "Living in a museum means
    we have a hoof in each of four worlds. Thanks also for the poetry contest link!


Friendly, positive comments and feedback are always welcome here. Please let me know I'm not just whistling in the dark!