Friday, April 11, 2014

Nominations Open for Prince William Poet Laureate

Nominations are open for the first ever Prince William Poet Laureate, a two-year position to be selected and filled under an exciting new Laureate program of the Prince William County Arts Council. The program is being administered by a special committee of the Arts Council under the leadership of June Forte, a member of Write by the Rails, the Prince William Chapter of the Virginia Writers Club.

Nominations for the position, which will receive an annual $500 honorarium, are due by MAY 10, 2014. Guidance and forms for nominations are available for download below. Mail completed submission forms to: June Forte, 12702 Valleywood Drive, Woodbridge, VA 22192

Please distribute this information as widely as possible.

If you have any questions, please contact Laureate Program Chair June Forte at or 703-585-6396.

Download the nomination form here.

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The Prince William County Arts Council is a membership organization serving the Greater Prince William Area, including Prince William County, Manassas and Manassas Park. Our mission is twofold: 1) To promote and support local artists and arts organizations and 2) To enlighten and educate audiences about the arts in the Greater Prince William Area. For more information about the Arts Council and its member groups and artists, visit or contact Sheyna Burt, Chair, Board of Directors, Prince William County Arts Council at 703-927-3999 or

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Poem by Patricia Daly-Lipe

The Grounds, St. Paul de Mausole Hospice and Vincent Van Gogh

The trees were just as he saw them
Twisted trunks, withering branches
Plaintively reaching for the glow
Of the pale blue and pink sky.
Gray leaves flashing silver at the falling sun,
Dry, pale ochre weeds coating the earth below.
The edge of his palette knife
Marking this place
Still so full of his presence.

Monday, April 7, 2014

For National Poetry Month: A Poem by Cindy Brookshire

Church Doughnuts

Bad enough I have to avert my eyes
From the wall of glazed, powdered, frosted,
crème and jelly filled  doughnuts
in the bakery every week
When I go grocery shopping.

But there they are
Every Sunday morning
On two round trays
Naked for the taking
In the parish hall.

Sinfully pink or white frosted
Chocolate-y and shiny,
rolled in crushed nuts
Or candy sprinkles.

I fantasize taking just one and
Biting into the cream center,
Savoring it with a cup of hot coffee
While sitting in a folding chair,
Listening to adult forum.

But, Lord, if that sugar ever got inside me….

One would never be enough.
I’d be pinching, yanking and elbowing
Sunday Schoolers to get to the best ones
And pretending to walk around the church,
just so the same people  wouldn’t see me
lose count on how many I gobbled down
before the feeling of fullness kicked in.

Late afternoon, regret would follow orgy.
I can’t believe they don’t buy smaller ones,
or less, or none at all.
Why not offer muffins or fresh fruit
or a pot ofsteel cut oats with natural toppings?

I know. Just because I can’t control myself
Doesn’t mean everyone should have to suffer.
But all that sugar….frosting….it isn’t even….food;
Just temptation.

by Cindy Brookshire
April 6, 2014

Sunday, March 30, 2014

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: Gazing Grain Press feminist chapbook contest

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONSGazing Grain Press feminist chapbook contest

About: An inclusive feminist poetry & hybrid chapbook contest edited by George Mason University MFA alumni and sponsored by the Fall for the Book literary festival. This contest is open to feminists of all genders and sexualities and is meant to promote socially conscious poetry and hybrid writing to a wide audience. We adhere to no one “definition” of feminism—we encourage a broad and diverse range of approaches. Challenge us!
Reading Period: March 15-June 1, 2014.
Prize: Publication, 10% of print run, and invitation to read at the 2014 Fall for the Book literary festival in Fairfax, VA (accommodation and travel within the continental United States will be paid). 
Runners-up and/or designated finalists will also be invited to receive recognition at the event. Contest finalists will be considered for publication in the Gazing Grain Press miniature series of limited-run, handmade artist books.
Judge: Dawn Lundy Martin
***Full Submission Details on Website
1.  This competition is open to all poets writing in English who have no affiliation with the judge, the editors, or the George Mason University MFA program.
2.  The author’s name should not appear anywhere in the manuscript itself. Include identifying information only where it is asked for in the submit form. Editors will read submissions blind.
3. Manuscripts must be between 15 and 25 pages (not including front and back matter), numbered accordingly, with only one poem per page. Every manuscript should include a title page, a table of contents, and an acknowledgements page, if applicable.
4. The manuscript should not have been previously published in any complete form; however, previously published individual poems are acceptable. We also accept simultaneous submissions.  Notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere. Multiple submissions are accepted, with a separate reading fee for each manuscript.
6.  The winner will be selected in early July, and the book will be published in September. The winner will be honored with a reading and reception at the Fall for the Book literary festival in Fairfax, VA (September 11 to 18, 2014).
Manuscripts are read by the editors, who will select a set of finalists to send to the judge for winner selection.