Winners: RAR Winter Cover Art Contest

Chess Player Suddenly Distracted, by Dave Sims

Dave Sims After 30+ years of teaching in colleges, universities, military bases, and prisons from Alaska to Louisiana, Dave Sims retired to the mountains of central Pennsylvania where he now dwells and creates. His most recent comix appear in Gigantic Sequins, The Nashville Review, Talking Writing, and Freeze Ray. He can be reached at



Backyard Familiar #5, by Mason Bondi


Mason Bondi is a California based painter working in a studio in San Rafael. His work explores the familiar people in his life in familiar places. Mason overlays these images with what he sees within the individual – expressing these feelings via color and form.



Mother’s Rain, by J. Ray Paradiso


J. Ray Paradiso – A confessed outsider, Chicago’s J. Ray Paradiso is a recovering academic in the process of refreshing himself as an EXperiMENTAL writer and street photographer. His work has appeared in dozens of publications including Big Pond Rumors, Storgy and Typishly. Equipped with graduate cRaZy quilt degrees in both Business Administration and Philosophy, he labors to fill temporal-spatial, psycho-social holes and, on good days, to enjoy the flow. All of his work is dedicated to his true love, sweet muse and body guard: Suzi Skoski Wosker Doski.

The Awakening, by William Wantling

 I found the bee as it fumbled about the ground
Its leg mangled, its wing torn, its stinggone
I picked it up, marvelled at its insistence
to continue on, despite the dumb brutething that had occurred
I considered, remembered the fatal struggle
the agony on the face of wounded friendsand the same dumb drive to continue
I became angry at the unfair conflict suffered
by will and organism
I became just, I became unreasoned, I became
I observed the bee, there, lying in my palmI looked and I commanded in a harsh and angry shout – 
STOP THAT!Then it ceased to struggle, and somehow suddenlybecame marvellously whole, and it aroseand it flew away
I stared, I was appalled, I was overwhelmed
with responsibility, and I knew not where to begin

The Francis Ponge Poetry Prize Winners


Francis Ponge

(click titles to read)

The Potato, by Dara Elareth (winner)

The Dim Boy, by Logo Wei (first runner-up)

Small George, by Clare Chu (runner-up)

< >, by Mathew Weitman (runner-up)

Absent Monuments, by Howie Good (runner-up)

The Animal Communicator, by Robert Keeler (runner-up)

Ashes, by Oliver Mestitz (runner-up)

Jungle Rope, by Renee Bailey (runner-up)


The Francis Ponge Prize for Poetry Winning Poem

The Potato
by Dara Elerath

The potato is afraid of light and movement. It would like to stay hidden forever, fattening slowly in its soft cocoon of soil. Its life is a life of sleep—do not begrudge it this simple existence. It is kin to stone in shape and nature, but softness betrays it. If a worm, seeking moisture, tunnels through, the potato, uneasy, says nothing. Its eyes are scars, they do not shift or lift their lids to note the damage; they do not try to understand. This misshapen lantern dangling from roots has no wish to illuminate anything at all. It is no use unearthing the potato before its time. The vegetable goes slowly. It does not tremble at the pressure of feet aboveground. It does not pray picturing the spade or the farmer’s rough, indifferent gloves. Rain falls, sun shines—the potato does not miss these things. Sweetness pours in through its stem, smoothing, straightening the brown paper of its skin.

White-Eyes, by Mary Oliver (RIP)

In winter
    all the singing is in
         the tops of the trees
             where the wind-bird
with its white eyes
    shoves and pushes
         among the branches.
             Like any of us
he wants to go to sleep,
    but he’s restless—
         he has an idea,
             and slowly it unfolds
from under his beating wings
    as long as he stays awake.
         But his big, round music, after all,
             is too breathy to last.
So, it’s over.
    In the pine-crown
         he makes his nest,
             he’s done all he can.
I don’t know the name of this bird,
    I only imagine his glittering beak
         tucked in a white wing
             while the clouds—
which he has summoned
    from the north—
         which he has taught
             to be mild, and silent—
thicken, and begin to fall
    into the world below
         like stars, or the feathers
               of some unimaginable bird
that loves us,
    that is asleep now, and silent—
         that has turned itself
             into snow.