Le Hinton
Epidemic

Le Hinton - Epidemic

Contest - 1st Place
Le Hinton is the author of four poetry collections including, Black on Most Days (Iris G. Press, 2008) and The God of Our Dreams (Iris G. Press, 2010). His work has been (or soon will be) published in… Read more »
Shenan Prestwich
Settling

Shenan Prestwich - Settling

Contest - 2nd Place
Shenan Prestwich is a Washington, DC-based poet and graduate of the Johns Hopkins University MA in Writing program. Her poems have appeared in publications such as Slow Trains, PigeonBike, Lines +… Read more »
D.M. Armstrong
Take Care

D.M. Armstrong - Take Care

Contest - 3rd Place
D. M. Armstrong is the fiction editor of Witness Magazine and recipient of the Black Mountain Institute fellowship at UNLV, where he’s a PhD candidate in Fiction. Most recently his stories have… Read more »

Settling - 2nd Place

Shenan Prestwich

Brother, I can never be your lover
which is why I’ll have to settle
for calling you my brother,
as if we had shared blood running
through our veins like thread
pulled from a common spool.

Brother, when I think of us pulled
I think of us pulled along the tracks
of the Norfolk Southern line
that ran behind the house where I used to live,
our feet crushing leaves and littered cans
in autumn, though you never set foot in that town.

I can never be your destination,
so I’ll be lying here
behind some house in your memory:
your rail line, your spine upon the earth,
the one you sometimes walk along
or glide over in a snake of cars,
my spikes and slats undetectable beneath you
as you sleep through the best part of the sunset,
the part that’s like two strangers
tipping their hats as they trade shifts
knowing of each other only what they see
from that angle, at that hour.
I’ll shoulder those evenings for you
so… Read more »