The Rival

by Laurie Byro
Desert Moon Review
Honorable Mention, February 2007
Judged by Pascale Petit


Long afterwards I knew she had entered
my house, not as a scavenger,
a buzzard or a gull, but as a wagtail.
She cocked her head and studied me

as I hung blue sheets on the line. The silence
and fluttering I’d loved as a child had polished her
a lustrous yellow. Lot’s wife could be dissolved
into a night of salty stars but what to do

with her? In feverish August I willed snowflakes
on my skin to ease the summer heat. I warned
her to leave us for exotic Africa, chanted

your name as idle sunshine buttered
her wings. I preened myself to prepare
for my late migration from jealousy to song.



  • 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