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Read the winning poem from our 2023 poetry contest

We challenged our readers to turn one of our newsletters into a poem — here’s what you came up with.

A graphic with the words "2023 poetry contest finalists"

Drumroll, please.

Graphic by 6AM City

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This April, we ran a poetry contest to celebrate National Poetry Month. We challenged you, our readers, to craft a poem using only the words that appeared in one of our newsletters (here are the original contest guidelines if you want to give it a try).

Turns out, you’re all poets and we didn’t even know it. We were beyond thrilled to read the original, creative, and awe-inspiring poems Austinites created from our newsletter copy. Check out the poems below, including the contest winner our readers voted for.

Winner: “stravaganza” by Becca Z.

Peruse this golden fareground,
Exploring, with gusto, fancy waterways
Like a sparkling riverdance
Created to inspire perennial gardens,
highlighting pretty, pink rain
Come and dance
On a sunny cocktail of grasses,
Celebrate the tiny mushroom shrubs,
And grab fruity wildflower vines with style
Take heart with this performance -
We are celebrating with surf-themed music,
Feet in the sand,
Today’s fun prompted by a simple need to make history,
and live big—
JoyRx!

Finalist: “Springtime in Austin” by Matti P.

In any month like April or May,
Morning rain falls to open the day.
Some afternoon you will find most pretty,
New flowers appearing in the city.
These are times to enjoy beach and sand,
Happy we don’t live in San Francisco or Portland.
Austin in spring is fancy, fun and sunny,
You can see a concert, a puppy or a bunny.
Sunrise and sunset, exploring our home,
Austin’s the winning place to be from.

Finalist: “A Wildflower Day” by Nora B.

poetry will find you, feet to finger,
at the heart of the wildflower day

gardens of opening words
will send their hello as poems
sit sparkling with morning

in afternoon drink the trees
deep until the leaf is moving through you,
reading and known

today’s poem is a sunset away from serious,
highlighting thunderstorms of pink
that fall golden to ground

craft your offering with care
or you will miss the poem for the flowers

Finalist: “Fancy Spurs” by Kacie C.

Tiny golden spurs
Sparkling, and fancy feet
A Texas party

Finalist: “Native Habits” by Michelle

Austin “Natives” don’t vote
They’re found at all-day brunch
Pretty big fan of enchilada, brisket, live music
HEB, Austin Humane Society, and Willie Nelson.

Anywhere shady and sunny
is fair game to sit down for an afternoon and enjoy or be Moody

but Calling them right now
please it is up to you
register to Vote

Finalist: “Casa De You” by Maegan H.

Become the thunderstorms
Dance like fire
Give flowers to the rain

Talk to the gardens
And let the grasses inspire
Be happy from the heart

And do your part
Come home, to the casa de you

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