Chip MacGregor

May 11, 2010

And the winner is…


The 2010 Bad Poetry Contest is now complete, and let me just state that this is further evidence of the rampant use of illegal drugs in this country. We have a number of weiners…

THE EVIL WIND AWARD goes to James L Rubart ("The Great Rudini") for this bit o' badness:

The Wind

The wind came softly, like a cat crawling up on top of my head and settling down for the afternoon,

It wooed me from my complacency, from my depths of malcontent, from my moment of melancholious daydreaming,

It brought upon its unseen arms a dandelion spore which danced upon my ear, carrying with it the promise that spring had arrived and would not be leaving soon,

The wind,

The wind,

The wind,

I stretched forth my hands and embraced my cousin, my brother, myself, my soul,

The wind,

The wind,

The wind.

You read that, and you just realize Jim should never have broken that particular wind. Speaking of foul winds, Betty Castleberry won this year's coveted WORST WINDY CRUD AWARD with a doozy entitled "Life Wind"… 

The wind blows life my way
And deposits stuff in my hair
Like molded sprinkly things on doughnuts

But not just in my hair
It leaves trash in my soul
In the deepest, most private part of my soul
Where nothing, not even the wind, should ever go.

But now it is there
Like some kind of armed intruder
With a big, evil weapon

A weapon that has spikes
And shoots bullets, too
A weapon that will not let me rest
And keeps me awake almost every night

My torment is awful
Really awful
I just can't explain how awful

But it is a little bit like
Smelling a skunk
Or watching somebody 
Self-pierce their navel

Will this black wind ever cease,
Or am I doomed to
Rancid skunk smells forever?

The WORST ATTEMPT AT POE AWARD goes to Becky Mushko, for her fabulously bad riff called "Hannibal Lee"…

Twas many and many a year ago

In a kennel owned by me,
There lived a poodle whom you may know
By the name of Hannibal Lee.
And this poodle lived with no other thought
Than to breed for a hefty stud fee.

He wasn’t a child but he was half wild;
In back alleys breed did he!
He bred with a joy that was more than a joy
My poodle Hannibal Lee.
An action that caused the cops to chase
Hannibal Lee and me.

And this was the reason that late one night
Near our kennel owned by me, 
A man jumped out of a car that night, grabbing 
My poodle Hannibal Lee
And took him off to an unscrupulous vet’s
Where they neutered Hannibal Lee.
And hauled me into court and made me pay a hefty fee.

Rival breeders, not half so proud of their dogs
Had envied him and me!
Yes! That was the reason as all must know,
That they neutered Hannibal Lee.

But his lust is stronger by far than the lust
Of dogs more intact than he,
Of dogs with a good pedigree.
And neither dog-catchers nor unscrupulous vets
Can ever dissever my desire to acquire
A clone of Hannibal Lee.

For a dog never howls without elicting growls
From the wobegon Hannibal Lee.
From tearful eyes I see hackles rise 
On the un-manned Hannibal Lee.

And so nowadays I cry and he bays
For his lost manhood ways.
My poodle, my doggie, my life and my pride
Who’ll know no more a doggie bride.
In that kennel owned by me;
In that empty kennel owned by me.

But if you want strange visions, take a look at this year's WORST PROZAC POEM, from Gina Conroy, who really needs to have the doctor up her meds:

Secret Admirer

My love for you is full and overflowing
Like my bladder after I can no longer hold it
Like I want to hold you…But you are not here
And I don’t blame you, well, yes I do.
I blame you for everything. 
My depression, the medications, my therapist’s bill.

My Prozatic double vision wouldn’t be so bad if I saw two of you. 
And the nightmares from hell might be bearable 
if I woke up next to you. 
And the drool on my pillow, shouldn’t be there. 
It should be you, on my pillow, but you’re not. 
You're safe in your warm bed, snuggled next to your…dog 
who's on your pillow…drooling.

And you don't care! You lie there like I don't even exist. 
Like I'm not knocking on the window of your heart.
I feel my soul emptying of life, 
like my bladder right now on your lawn, 
and that’s your fault too!

And that can barely hold a candle to the true deepfulness and reflectivosity of John Upchurch who wretched up this hunk o' poetry:


You see those periods? That's how
Serious I am (and even on separate
Lines). My thoughts are so deep
That whole sentences
Cannot contain them–not even
Complex compound sentences
With and after and, but
After but.

Speaking of putrid poems and serious angst, let's turn to a female college student, for who would know better? The following foul tripe was penned by Melissa Kerkhoff:

It's About my Soul Isn't It?

I was eating my fries,
alone as usual.
I had consumed most of them then I saw
In the bottom of the basket
Crumbled crusty bits
of fries.
Dark and frail. 
Fragile and hopeless.
Like my soul.

I was walking in the sunshine,
alone as usual
when my eyes trailed off into the grass.
I saw among the happy blades a single feather.
A dark feather.
Probably from a raven.
It was black and alone
Like my soul.
Even in a field of happy grass-blades,
it was dark and alone.

I was staring out my window, 
alone as usual,
when I noticed the blackness of my window pane.
The darkness of it framed the falling light.
Soon all the light would be encompassed
by the darkness.
By the black void of the window pane
and the black void of the night.
It reminded me of my soul.

I went scuba diving,
alone as usual.
I saw the black stripes on a fish.
The black seemed to rip into its colors.
It ripped and tore all vitality away.
Like my soul.
And I realize here in the depth of the sea
that not even the fish
can bring a light to my dark soul

And, of course, the BURNING LOINS AWARD (also called the "Cruex Award") goes to Ron Benson for this little bit of doggerel: 

My Loin’s Burn
(The Intrinsic Value of The Possessive Apostrophe and Other Critical Punctuation)

Late in the cooling evening,
Under the canopy of stars,
I stare and ponder
My loin’s burn.

There in the black long armory,
Heat like a hot, hot, heater.
Smoking still, I spy it:
My loin’s burn.

She asked for something beautiful,
A wonder in a marinade.
I sniff the painful memory;
My loin’s burn.

The fire – inconsistency.
Parts too cool, parts hot as . . .
Hell could not contain
My loin’s burn.

Taste the lovely wiggly
Rescued from obscurity.
Knife it, cut it, savor now:
My loin’s burn.

Doesn't that jus

t make you want to run out and buy some ointment? This year's WORST LOVE POEM USING THE WORD LAME goes to Andrea Heinecke, who shared this from the heart of her bottom:

i love you i hate you (breakup)

You left me twitching in the rain 
Like a cucumber without its skin
Like a penguin towards its prey

There’s guile in your eyes, your voice 
The allure of a siren 
Crying for (my) blood 
[my death]

You told me you loved me
But then you walked away
Like a praying mantis after the act 
Who eats her mate


You battered my heart 
As Donne once said 
But you’re not God 
You’re lame

Which must be followed by THE WORST LOVE POEM THAT FAILS TO USE THE WORD LAME from philospher-poetess Aimee Salter, who might have actually been sober when penning the words:

OUr love is like a rose
A really really big rose
Bigger than any rose anyone else has ever compared their love to before.
Seriously huge.
A rose as big as a a planet.
No the sun.
Our love is a rose as big as a planet and as bright as the sun. 
So bright it would burn your eyeballs 
Out of your head. 
You’d walk around with these gaping holes where your eyeballs should be 
If you looked at our love.
And this huge rose, 
Bigger than a planet 
And as bright as the sun 
Doesn’t have any thorns.
Well, okay it does but the thorns don’t have points. 
They’re just nubs.
Nubs that wouldn’t hurt a ginormous baby 
If a baby was big enough to pick the planet-sized, sun-rose.
The only way the nubs would ever hurt anyone 
Is if you stuffed them into the gaping eye-holes 
Left behind when someone looked at the brightness of our love.
Cause it they would get infected with the nubs in there.
But even then they could just look at 
The brightness of our love again
And the brightness would burn so bright
It would cauterize the nub-infection
And burn the nubs out too.
So your gaping eye-holes would heal.
They would be healed by the burning brightness of our 
Massive, planet-sized, eye-searing, wound-cauterizing, love-rose
Even though your mother thinks I don’t deserve you.

(c) 2010 Aimee L. Salter

The RUNNER UP TO A BUNCH OF LOSER POETS award goes to Judith Millar, and it's important to remember that she's a runner up, since if our champion fails his drug test and cannot actually serve as Poetry Champion, Judith will be expected to hock his crown and bail him out. Our runner up is this unnamed ditty:

I wandered lonely as a cloud – 
well not a real cloud
at least not a cumulus cloud
which really can’t be trusted
and may well morph into a cumulonimbus
and drip on people later in the day
and certainly not a cirrus fibratus
with its fibrous mane’s tale – 
not really the wandering type
(they don’t, as a rule, drift
if you get my drift)
I wandered more as a 
following along, as they do,
after a cold front – 
the cold front left in your wake
when you took your love
and just took off
like a cirrus duplicatus
full of mean looks
and icy crystals
after we hit that period
of severe turbulence
that left me lonely
and wandering like some
cast-off cloud
not a bit fluffy or Wordsworthian –
and not a daffodil in sight.

c2010 Judith Millar

And THIS YEAR'S CHAMPION? The Putrid Potentate of Poetry! The Ripsnortin Raja of Rhyme! Yes, the winner of the coveted WORST POEM OF 2010 AWARD goes to Hajid Kirduz Msechnohech, who is awarded our Grand Prize (a copy of How to Goodbye Depression: If You Constrict Anus 100 Times Every Day. Malarky? or Effective Way? which is widely considered to be one of the worst self-published titles in the long history of publishing). Hajid, you were close last year, but this year YOU HAVE WON! Here's hoping you enjoy the book, learn how to erase your bad stickiness, shoot out immaterial fiber, and, most importantly, rotate your vortex (though preferably while there is no one else in the room). For those who missed Hajid's fabulous poem because you couldn't figure out that >> meant you needed to move to the next page of poems, let me paste the whole schlamozzle here for your reading enjoyment:

Greetings and saltations, Uncle Chip sir!

This year I offer heartfelt poem (written out of depths of heart) based on events which recently fell onto me in last year.


* * * *

by Hajid Kirduz Mesechnohech

Krzjette, your love for me
was like lowing of she-goats in spring
when bald sparrows
alight on budding bushes.

But your father,
like stealer of one-footed man's sandal,
he stood between us.
(He is large man.)

He betrothed you to another,
Ringtu the seller
of discount carpets.
And him you wed.

Now I stand
like camel lost in desert,
like beggar on street,
like sultan without mustache.

Tray of dates is prepared,
but falls into camel's trough.
DuckTales marathon is broadcast,
but elder cousin's television not working.

Winter has come.
But until spring I wait.
Lowing of she-goats
will come again.

Thanks for everyone for competing. You are all fabulous. Now… it's back to publishing. 


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