Pin It

A Celebration of Trees 

by Paul Haeder and Michael Bowen & r & As the number and variety of poems entered in The Inlander's In Celebration of Trees contest attest, poetry and tree reverence are alive and well in the Inland Northwest. Poetry is the shape of that internal well of spiritual and metaphysical language. The poems in this year's contest reflect a verbal benediction to the authors' connections to trees. Highlighting backyard tree houses, the grand old cottonwoods near a bedroom or a lone maple shading a gravestone, the poets in this year's contest drive home through lyrical play that trees are indeed important. Celebrating anything -- family, emotions, urbanity or the myriad of common beauty in nature -- is a good thing. It is clear that the Inland Northwest has a multitude of public and closet poets who all connect to the lament of trees -- how personal journeys and life's cacophony of tribulations are measured somehow by a personal tree.

After the devastation of Hiroshima, a week after tens of thousands had lost their lives, the surviving Japanese found a lone elm tree budding. The tree symbolized tenacity, hope and a kind of surreal invocation by nature to have humankind heed the simple things in nature. This year's contest entrants have joined that long tradition of attempting to comprehend "the enormity of things" through the simple stroke of light and words. & align= "right " & -- Paul Haeder & lt;/p &

In the poetry category, we received 68 poems by 44 poets. We selected four Distinguished Poems, one Best Short Poem, one Best Child's Poem and three Honorable Mention poems. Our poetry judges were Paul Haeder and Michael Bowen.

Paul Haeder has taught creative writing at UTEP and presently teaches at SCC, SFCC and the Institute for Extended Learning. He has published stories and poems in literary journals, including The William and Mary Review, and last December, his story "Bird Stamp" won The Inlander's ninth annual Fiction Contest.

Michael Bowen is a staff writer for The Inlander. He has a Ph.D. in English but still has a lot to learn about poetry.

When we judged the poetry, we paid attention to diction, imagery, metaphors and the poem's shape on the page. As a rule, poems that avoided starting with a preconceived generalization --instead progressing from well-observed particulars to some sort of attitude-altering philosophical stance -- seemed the most impressive to us.

On the photography side, we reviewed 145 photographs by 35 different photographers. We chose six photos by four photographers as the best of the bunch. Our judges were Joe Preston and Pat Kennedy.

Joe Preston is the just-departed art director for The Inlander -- he'll soon be attending the Art Institute of Portland to pursue a degree in graphic design.

Pat Kennedy, a graduate of the photography program at SFCC, is a freelance photographer for The Inlander. An avid outdoorsman, he shoots a lot for skiing and snowboarding resorts and publications.

Criteria for the photography contest included composition, exposure, originality and technical difficulty. & align= "right " & -- Michael Bowen & lt;/p &

For poems submitted by Inlander readers see out & lt;a href="" & Arts and Culture & lt;/a & section. To peruse the photograph entries pick up a print copy of the paper at a local distribution point!

  • Pin It

Latest in News

  • Buried in the Headlines
  • Buried in the Headlines

    Big stories largely ignored by the mainstream media
    • Oct 27, 2016
  • A Sense 
of Détente
  • A Sense of Détente

    In only two months, the seemingly intractable battle between mayor and council has turned into an exuberant truce
    • Oct 27, 2016
  • Not Green Enough
  • Not Green Enough

    State says no carbon exemption for Spokane Waste-to-Energy Plant; plus, settlement reached in Priest River high school football concussion lawsuit
    • Oct 27, 2016
  • More »


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed
Monumental: Skiing Our National Parks

Monumental: Skiing Our National Parks @ Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox

Thu., Oct. 27, 7 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by n/a

  • Iron Upgrade
  • Iron Upgrade

    The new one is smart and funny and action-packed, and it’s bigger and better and sleeker. And Downey does it again, this time ramping up Stark’s arrogant wisecracking, telling anyone who’ll listen (mostly women) that, via the creation of his powerful Iron Man suit, he’s brought years of uninterrupted peace to the world.
    • May 12, 2010
  • Seeing Gay
  • Seeing Gay

    A festival showing GLBT from all angles
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • Get Out the Vote
  • Get Out the Vote

    With all the uncertainty in the world these days, hot wings and cold beer are two things we can get behind
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Defending North Idaho

    Why Heather Scott must go
    • Oct 20, 2016
  • The Do-Over

    After failing to pass a bus service tax hike last year, Spokane Transit Authority has a plan to get you to vote for it again
    • Oct 6, 2016
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

election 2016


green zone


trail mix

Readers also liked…

  • Patrolling While Black
  • Patrolling While Black

    Gordon Grant's nearly 30 years as a Spokane cop have been affected by race, but that's not the whole story
    • Jul 8, 2015
  • Derailed
  • Derailed

    After years of train hopping, Chuck Lawrence wants to go home. It won't be that simple
    • May 13, 2015

© 2016 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation