The Third Time is Definitely the Charm!
This year, the YCLAC received over 90 submissions for our 3rd Annual Halloween Writing Contest. The fame of the contest continues to spread (like a CDC escapee!); in addition to pieces by students from Yuba College, we also tricked students from Andros Karperos Middle School, Willows High School, and Butte College, plus writers from North Carolina, into giving us their creative treats. We had first time writers who want to be nurses, accountants, and long-time writers having fun with new forms.
And now, poetry.
Trick or Treat Poetry: Our Words, Your Rhymes
Here it is, the best of the Trick-or-Treat Poetry. We created grab bags of words, creepy fun words, like spectre, enchant, hobgoblin and havoc, and entrants used them to build poems. While we had a number of excellent submissions, three entries stood out as unanimous favorites. There was heated discussion and several recounts, but in the end, one poem narrowly won out. Congratulations to our winners and thanks to all who submitted!
First Place: LOST
-by Roberto Tinoco
It’s a murky night
as I stay in my house
I shriek at the sight of Splinter
my brothers mouse.
Putrid little thing
must’ve got lost
causes havoc for our cat
who thinks he’s the boss.
Now it’s time to kick back
and eat this pizza from Rick’s
maybe watch a movie
Knock, knock, knock,
fast as one, two, three.
I peer towards my door
who can it be?
Midnight on the dot
a figure peers in
my heart starts to pound
as I countdown from 10.
Mother would say get a grasp!
You do nothing but dream!
Doctors & Psychiatrists agreed
as their smiles gleamed.
I open my eyes and the figure’s still there
only this figure has morphed
into a beast from somewhere.
I run down the hall screaming and shouting!
Where’s my father and mother?
Gone on an outing.
Under my sheets I jumped with fear
I close my eyes
but the footsteps are near!
The silence I exert is all I can do
What’s this I hear?
The handle starts to unscrew!
My sheets are ripped off
but what do I see?
The beast is in front—
The beast is me!
Wake up! A lady whispers
ever so softly.
I look down at my feet
they’re handcuffed strongly.
Time to take your pills
and stop with these lies
because everyone in here
spends extended time.
Second Place: THAT DEVIL RUM
-by Alicia Araya
all wreak havoc
on your sickened guts and brain and sorely test
your murky grasp on life
you toss in bed
you grasp at dreams
and hope to find
from the nauseating hobgoblin madness
of your lost, splintered mind
and defecating mouth
laid waste by alcohol
this was it
the last time
but scrolling past endless empty promises and lukewarm intentions and madcap parties you find
there’s always room
until your spleen explodes with your full awareness if not
and your eyes roll back in
jaundiced blond horror as your life spills out and you realize
it is finally
for life but not too late for reaping
Third Place: Halloween
-by Roslyn Manera
A time of shrieks and fangs
Scares and dares
It’s the night genies and reapers come out
Yet morbid thoughts appear
Evil gnashes out at lost souls
And pizzas are delivered
Blondes dress up as barbie
Hobgoblins taunt and dance
The murky night sending chills down our spines
While putrid smells of fake blood and makeup fill our lungs
The night leaves us with dreams of frightening beasts
Our splintered society joins as one
We celebrate this night of the spirits
Grasping onto two worlds and connecting them as one
Honorable Mention: Spectre
–by Brandy Souza
Once upon a morbid dream
I was chased by a teddy bear who shrieked and screamed
A putrid shrill it gnashed its icky fangs
Instead of brown it was green
Like a hobgoblin it would seem
To bite and hack every chance it had
With a sweet murky smell that would make you gasp
As if you lost your breath
Reaping havoc on your every step
Its nails felt like splinters or a feline claw
Its lower mandible was an awful sight, crooked teeth and an under bite
The air was cold like a cryogenic chamber
A macabre feeling began to linger
When all at once a bell began to ring
And I sat up in bed thanking god it was all just a dream
Honorable Mention: Unsuspecting Victim
-by Seth Singh
Enchanted by the flickering candles,
Phil paid no mind to the mandibles,
Possessing large ferocious fangs,
Ready to gnash at his vigorous veins.
Yet, Phil let out a shrill
When he realized the gap
Was about to fill.
With a fool that tripped the trap.
Before the bite made contact with the prey
Phil called out, “HELP ME!! RIGHT AWAY!!”
And those who found him will say,
“After Phil bobbed and pulled the creature’s hair
He and his would-be saviors saw the teddy bear,
Of the sweetest variety.” They do declare.