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The League of Minnesota Poets Presents

The Manningham Poetry Trust Minnesota Student Award Winners 2015

Foreword The Manningham Student Poetry Contest is designed to promote and encourage poetry in middle and high school students. The Leauge of Minnesota Poets hosts this statewide competition. The winners receive an honorary membership to The League of Minnesota Poets as well as inclusion in this publication. The winners are then entered into the National Manningham Student Poetry Contest, sponsored by the National Federation for State Poets Societies. Full rules and guidelines for the contest are outlined at the end of this publication. I would like to congratulate the winners of this year’s contest as well as all the students who entered the 2015 Manningham contest. We are honored and proud to have students willing to take a bold step and submit their poetry to our contest. We appreciate all the time and effort the students put into their poems and into advancing their own craft with words. I would also like to thank the teachers who have taken the time to share and encourage participation in this contest. Without their effort of teachers everywhere working with their students on writing poetry, this would not be possible, and we would not have such a pool of talent in the competition. I would like to thank Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer for judging this year’s contest. We appreciate the time and effort you put into reading and reviewing this year’s poems.


Peter William Stein Youth Manningham Chair

Copywrite 2015 by the League of Minnesota Poets All rights remain with the original authors of the poems

Senior Division First Place

Until We Are Washed Away I put faith in sand castles, the childhood kingdoms, downfall of man, just as I put faith in you and I. For we appeared on ocean tides and I know not what I cannot do, but watch and wait and will to. And you, like me, you cannot be anything more than a foe lost within the distance. They did shape us so, the souls. I crumbled in their hands like the matter we are made of. And so I grow upon the beach, structured of wasted rock and glass, torn beneath a crystal wake. Until the storm brings rain to wash and tear and triumph over me, the broken she, becoming not-me. I lie across the warm white sand and add designs and grooves until the waves wash them away again. Why can I not join the fish, the sirens, the silence, the sea monster? Forced to only witness, and ever hurt.

So I put faith in sand castles, the tortured curses of the human condition, because I am one.

Sydney Lo Sartell, MN

Second Place

Mine Alone That night her eyes, Caribbean blue and the black essence of the sweat-distorted mascara dripped down her face and roses had kissed her cheeks leaving faint, delicate echoes of their scarlet hue and cascading like an unfurling sail, her golden hair tumbled down free from the tight constraints of her worn extravagant coiffure and being in a lovely state of exhaustion, she said “I just look like death, don’t I?” Grinning, I said “But, death doesn’t smile” Then, that time I was playing the piano and she sat down next to me “Can I play?” “Be my guest” She began slowly, but soon her fingers began to flow and dance over the keys Her song, more elegant, more complex, more beautiful than mine But. It didn’t compare to her, nothing could. The ease and focus in her eyes, the timid biting of her lip, these habits of beauty, they all contributed to the magnetic pure grace that emanated from her the pure grace found in all her moments. But. There is still that moment that has not occurred I can neither conceive nor visualize the hour or sanctuary. But. I can see the innocent bliss in her eyes I can feel the wild hope bounding in my blood

I can hear a pleasant silence observing us I can see her porcelain skin and the curves it envelops I can feel the desire formerly withheld I can hear her sharp deep breaths I can see the comforting darkness I can feel her velvet lips and satin skin I can hear my heart speed up to catch the beat of hers But. Never have I seen these sights, felt these things, heard these sounds All of this that I could experience is only mine mine. and mine alone. Jack Cordero St. Paul, MN

Third Place

Daniel A deer wandering the autumn forest Walks into a trap too strong for a bear A deer with the grandest heart; the purest A creature with pain, but too humble to share He limps below the fading moon Noticing the change in his heart, his mind When the leaves slowly fall with autumn’s ruin And the dreams are of a different kind He comes upon a vast and deep divide A vale stretching endlessly each way He questions to jump to the other side, For it seems he cannot bear another day He turns to recall the world behind him His soul weeps for this place and its allure And praises his time like a joyous hymn But such beauty, with these eyes, remains obscure He prepares, Eyes agleam, alive, and bright Then he leaps through the fog to live in light Aidan Speckhard Sartell, MN

Junior Division First Place

Yǔ “She’s here again,” I whisper, From behind the refuge of the window pane; Floating lightly downward, Slowly cascading Drifting down from the heavens Some say she is a gift, Full of life and vivacity, But what she brings Depends on her disposition, Like that of a capricious being Today she is merry, Effervescent, Joyful, and free; Exuberant like a young child Who is knowing life for the first time Fluttering and lingering just above the ground As if to tease the motionless cement She glistens, lying there Only to do it again With newfound excitement My face is pressed to the glass As she dances outside; “Join me,” Says she “For who knows when I’ll be gone?” I tentatively take A few steps

Into the drizzly realm Where time stops For just a moment She starts to leave, Little by little, Gathering her translucent beads And then… Vanishing “’Till we meet again,” She says With a smile, Leaving a trail Of colors Kayla Chan Woodbury, MN

Second Place

Black, Night Sky Stars have a way of piercing through the sky. I wonder if their mother is the moon. They come out at the same time, Lighting the black, night sky for each other. Who does the sun watch after when present? Does it only shine for us? Give off warmth for us? It lets us know that light comes after darkness. Who do the planets have to look to? They only have each other. Playing an endless game of tag, Up there in that black, night sky. It may not appear like it, But they are all always up there. They are simply given spotlights Even if only for a couple of hours, Up there in that black, night sky.

Abby Feuer Woodbury, MN

Third Place

Perspective You think you're a hero, One who saved the dame, You think you're a savior, Make your claim to fame. You think you're a hotshot, You think you're so cool, Well I think I'm a genius, And I think you're a fool. So welcome, my friend, For you're in my story, Where you are the villain, And I have the glory. Isabella Wu Woodbury, MN


THE LEAGUE OF MINNESOTA POETS Twenty-Sixth Annual Manningham Poetry Competition State and National Awards for School Year 2015-2016 Contest Entry Rules There are two divisions; Grades 6-8 [Junior Division] and Grades 9-12 [Senior Division] No Entry Fee


Poems must be original but may have been published and/or have won previous awards.


All students in Minnesota attending public, parochial, private schools, and home-schooled are eligible. Only one entry per student is allowed.


Submit two (2) copies of each poem. On both copies include (in upper left hand corner) the division, Junior or Senior. No Name or identifying information on this copy! One copy only must also contain in the upper right hand corner, the following: 1) the student’s name and complete home address 2) student’s grade and division-junior or senior, 3) name, address and phone number of the school and 4) the following signed statement: This is my original work, student’s signature


The poem is to be typed or computer-generated. No Handwritten copies will be accepted. No poems more than 50 lines long. If the poem continues on more than one page, staple the pages together.


Please no large print, illustrations, unusual typefaces (Gothic, script, etc.) or colored fonts. Be considerate of your judges. They love to see your work, but it needs to be in the prescribed format to make their work more efficient.


Students may email submissions as long as they follow the rules outlined above. Poems may be electronically signed, or signed and scanned, but the signature must be present.


Cash prizes will be awarded to the winners in both age divisions. $30 for first place, $20 for second place, and $10 for third place.

Nationally recognized poets judge the contest. The top ten poems will be selected at the Minnesota state level for submission to the National Manningham Contest. There they may win cash prizes and publication. Poems selected at the state level will be published in a chapbook, which will be forwarded to the student authors and to participating schools. Mail entries to:

Or by email:

Peter Stein, MN Manningham Poetry Competition Chair 2029 103rd Ave NW Coon Rapids, MN 55433


Manningham '15 chapbook  

Contest winners from the League of Minnesota Poets Student Manningham Competition.

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