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2014 Rengay Contest Results (with Judges' comments)


Rengay (Judges:  Beverley George and Ron C Moss)



The judging of this rengay was a great pleasure to participate in with Beverley. It was a very positive experience that brought many rewards. Right from the beginning we were in agreement with what makes a prize winning rengay. I would like to thank the organisers for the opportunity to be a part of this wonderful competition. (rm)

Imaginative linking and shifting; careful word choices; and harmonious collaborative writing in which no one voice dominates, are the hallmarks of the winning and highly commended rengay in this competition. In fairness to all contestants, Ron and I began our judging process by individually placing a comment by every entry and were delighted by how readily our shortlists merged into one. (bg)


First Place

Letter from Home


Susan Antolin, Walnut Creek, CA

Michael Sheffield, Kenwood, CA

Lois Scott, San Francisco, CA


the sound of the TV

bleeds into the kitchen clatter

summer dusk                            Susan


     among the crickets’ chirp

     cheek against soft earth      Michael


raccoons splashing

in the evening garden

star jasmine                              Lois


     after midnight

     a fumbling of keys by the front door




silent passage past my window

the moonlit ship                        Michael


     first light through trees

     footsteps in the hall             Lois



This rengay overlays elements of everyday domestic circumstance with a dream-like quality. The three voices blend seamlessly as the images link and progress, resulting in a poem of substance that seems longer than its structure dictates. (bg)


From the very first readings, this rengay appealed to me very much. A strong central theme flowed steadily, with many sub themes and strong images. The shifts and links were clever and captured the reader through the progression of evening to early morning. (rm)


Second Place


A Spill of Moonlight


Carol Judkins, Carlsbad, CA

David Terelinck, Pyrmont, NSW,  Australia


ocean fog

my dreams alive

in seaglass                                           Carol


     the maelstrom

     of Turner’s dark oils                      David


red sky—

drinking songs drift

from a tethered boat                            Carol


     second watch

     the deckhand baptized

     by a spill of moonlight                   David


the sound no sound

of buoy bells                                       Carol


     he calls my name—


     into the wind..                                David



The opening two verses set the scene for an amazing journey. I was carried along on a sea of colour, passion and power. The strong images were seamlessly joined in a vision of the sea that J. M. W. Turner would have applauded. (rm)


An economy of carefully selected words that engage the senses and enrich the reading experience, and an open-ended closing link, earned this rengay its place. (bg)


Third Place




Julie Warther, Dover, OH

Angela Terry, Lake Forest Park, WA


pumpkin spiced latte—

clouds swirl

a paper moon                                   Julie


origami passenger pigeons

just to remind us                              Angela


penciling in

the breath marks

Amazing Grace                                Julie


hand made books

trimmed with orange and brown

autumn rain                                      Angela


the wax seal on the envelope

unbroken                                           Julie


a house of cards

with tissue thin walls

other peoples’ lives                           Angela



With fresh and shifting images. this rengay generates warmth and a sense of enduring values,  as well as sensitivity to transience. (bg)


As finely crafted as handmade paper this rengay has many folds to explore and the end result was very satisfying with a strong closing verse. The feel of handmade books and paper is a satisfying one for me. Bookbinding informed my early years and this theme evoked many memories of those times with a sense of touch and smell. (rm)


Honorable Mention  (not ranked)


A Winter’s Tale


Michael Dylan Welch, Sammamish, WA

Sarah Welch, Sammamish, WA


morning light—

a trace of snow

on the neighbour’s crèche            Michael


     granddad steals a gumdrop

     from the gingerbread house    Sarah


crowded mall—

the eyes of carolers

all aglow                                       Michael


mistletoe hung

above the mantle—

empty stocking                             Sarah


     sale flags fluttering

     in the tree lot                           Michael


bronze sunset…

the first Christmas lights

turn on                                         Sarah


With lively imagery and pace, this rengay captures the warmth of Christmas, tempered by realism as in ‘sale flags’. (bg)

I felt all aglow after reading this fine Christmas rengay. I enjoyed the progression between granddad stealing a gumdrop to the final verse which links sunset with Christmas lights. (rm)


Visiting Hours


John Thompson, Santa Rosa, CA

Renée Owen, Sebastopol, CA


hospital silence

I linger to share

the moonrise                            John


       this sliver of hope

       things will be different     Renée       


talk of cancer

rippling in the carp pond

a broken moon                         John


       your ghost…

       or a motionless heron

       fishing in the gloom         Renée   


on a stone bench

stillness & shadow                  John



       waiting for you


       on the opposite shore       Renée    


A powerful theme that is handled with sensitivity, an acknowledgement of life and death, along with the flow of seasons and natural elements. (rm)

This is a love poem without once using the word; a journey through the twilight of terminal illness. The link between carp and heron creates tension and foreboding. (bg)



The Joy of Rain


Shrikaanth Krishnamurthy, United Kingdom

Sahana Shrikaanth, United Kingdom


autumn shower—

a grandma twirls

her umbrella                                            Shrikaanth


each drop on the leaf

reflects a rainbow                                   Sahana


monsoon camp…

slum kids painting in

shades of gray                                        Shrikaanth


splashing puddles

on the way from school

buffaloes                                                Sahana


drops plop plop plopping

on upturned milk pails                          Shrikaanth



crackling in the pan—

thunderbolts                                          Sahana


Refreshing as a shower of rain, with unexpected images and word choices. An attention to sound. (bg)

A splish-splash of words and imagery fills the senses with this one, all in the safety of grandma’s twirling umbrella. The nurturing food brings it to a satisfying completion. (rm)