Learning to See

by Terry Ofner
The Waters
Second Place, March 2015
Judged by Ned Balbo


The dove said dove all day.
               —Theodore Roethke

The willow says willow,
dawn says dawn.
Each drop of dew is a sun
birthing its own blade
of grass.

The orchard of memory
is overgrown with weeds,
raspberries gone rogue.
I’m the biggest green thing
in the green apple tree.

Thrasher is secret
to the suckered pear.
Mama turns my head,
teaches me to see.


In spare, simple lines, the world opens up its bounty, defying language yet connected to it, too. Beyond reason’s limitations nature beckons, and we respond—if we know how to do so. --Ned Balbo

  • March 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      Cuttlefish
      by Jim Doss
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Second Place

      Wings
      by Bernard Henrie
      The Writer's Block

      Third Place

      gutterball
      by Brenda Morisse
      Wild Poetry Forum

  • February 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      Nebraska, Summer
      by Greta Bolger
      The Waters

      Second Place

      Goldback Fern
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Writer's Block

      Third Place

      Negotiatin’ Wi Demons (For wee Rabbie Burns)
      by John J. Williamson
      PenShells