There were 5 entries this year and all were good, but only 2 were chosen as winners. They present very different images and are well crafted.
And the winning poems are Miriam Parrish's Topaz's Misadventure and Ed Pacht's Lament for the Hills.
The unblemished day is young;
The verdant hills are calling.
Topaz paces the plush new grass,
Tense, alert, tongue lolling.
She longs to leave the yard and go
Where grand adventures hang
(A joyride or a cat pursuit)
To earn a fearsome name.
She leaps over the gate and runs
Past streets and alleyways,
Even through dew-studded spiders' nets;
She will not be delayed.
She trots into the local zoo
Exploring here and there until
She comes across a tawny beast,
Sitting statue still.
He has a slanted, mint-green gaze;
A mane of golden wealth.
His tasseled tail flips listlessly;
His paws suggest his stealth.
She barks, and rage consumes the beast.
Reaching, he rants and roars
With pride and fearsome fame!
Pup flees to safety's tempting shores.
Exhausted, frightened, and contrite;
Thirst for adventure quite spent,
She gladly returns to paradise:
Life without embellishment.
Lament for the Hills
Reaching for the verdant hills,
he loudly roars in deep frustration,
that the onward march of progress,
the embellishment of daily life
by things that no one really needs,
and the constant urge to take a joyride
through the once unblemished countryside,
so quickly touches and consumes all that it sees.
He looks with love upon the slanted slopes,
studded with the flowers that glow like topaz,
plush with verdure green and cool as mint,
and watches as a bighorn ram leaps upon the rocks above.
Yet there are those who would destroy this grandeur,
not contrite for all the wreckage they may cause,
seeing nothing but the bottom line of what they net,
the other green on which their thoughts all hang,
and thus it is, in reaching for those verdant hills,
he loudly roars and cries his tears of deep frustration.
Ed's comment is worth publishing also. He describes how the random words suggest images so that a poem forms like the swirling force of a tornado. He wrote: "I'm always amazed how it works that, if I take one or two of the words in the list, a theme emerges and sucks the rest of the words into its vortex. The first two lines, including three of your words certainly set the pace for this one. I had no idea where it might be going, but it unfolded amazingly quickly. I didn't expect a piece of environmental commentary, but that's what came out, and the lines are longer than I usually do, but here it is."
Congratulations to Ed and Miriam! And thanks to the other poets who participated.
Watch for another Random Word Poetry Contest in October.