awake

by James Lineberger
Salty Dreams
Honorable Mention, October 2008
Judged by Hélène Cardona and John Fitzgerald


until i turned seventy
i could still do it one leg
crooked around
the upper rung of an a-ladder extension
leaning back easy arms free
to hold the drill with both hands
and fasten a new board
covering up
a raccoon hole on the fascia at the rear
of the house but then

then

there comes a time when you struggle
out of bed
to discover you can’t accomplish
the familiar foolhardy
things you’re so accustomed to
and not even
your wife will applaud you now when it is she herself
trying to remember to walk
the dogs
and your daughter coming over
to mow the lawn

and you learn
it’s only in our dreams we have any
joy in this life
the nightmares lying awake
same as we

stretching their fucked-up knees to face the day



  • December 2020 Winners

    • First Place

      Avaricious
      by Judy Kaber
      The Waters

      Second Place

      To James Bulger, aged 2, murdered February 1993
      by two boys aged 10 in Liverpool, England
      by Christopher T. George
      Babilu

      Third Place

      Dr. Pachango’s Mango
      by Jim Fowler
      Babliu

  • November 2020 Winners

    • First Place

      Notorious RBG
      by Laurie Byro
      Babilu

      Second Place

      To My Old Age
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Waters

      Third Place

      Beggar’s Lice
      by Ken Ashworth
      The Writer's Block