Nov 292010



Play while you read the following.


To be slightly serious about this for once, dg wants to say what a pleasure it is to observe the élan and enthusiasm you all demonstrate in these contests. It’s fun to compete and win, sure, but this would be a waste of time if that’s all anyone thought about. It’s just hugely pleasurable to watch people try a little form, try something outside their normal routine, try at the risk of falling flat (or, worse yet, finding yourself changed in some unexpected way). DG loves the good-humoured banter, the camaraderie & commentary, the false steps and lightning bolts of creativity. Steve Axelrod goofed on his first try, then came within an ace of winning another NC contest on his second try. Vivian Dorsel entered once, misread the contest end-date, then, at the last minute, dashed off her birthday rondeau which also nearly won the people’s choice award. This time we had several entries from people we’ve never heard of before which is great. The thing to remember is, as Gary Garvin once wrote to dg in an email  (see growing list of testimonials on the About page), there are no failures on Numéro Cinq.

You can all count the votes. You all know the winner this time, by a hair, is Anna Maria Johnson for her absolutely gorgeous and astonishingly robust “Kitchen Ostinato.”

The Way To A Man’s Heart is Through His Stomach, or Kitchen Ostinato

By Anna Maria Johnson

In the kitchen, eating avocado,
Sits a housewife and a desperado.
He weeps gently while she peels a carrot.
“Things are not what they seem!” squawks her parrot,
then with his beak, pecks an ostinato.

The housewife drinks some amontillado
then scoops a handful of turbinado
to sweeten the tea before they share it
in the kitchen.

The cowboy, trouble aficionado,
tells her that his name is Leonardo.
He’s wasted years on things without merit.
Would he settle down now? Could he dare it?
He gives her a stolen carbinado
in the kitchen.


  11 Responses to “The First Ever Numéro Cinq Rondeau Writing Contest People’s Choice WINNER!!!”

  1. Congrats, Anna Maria! Talisker in the Bell Tower! Time and Date TBA.

  2. A most excellent result. Congratulations, Anna Maria!

  3. Congrats, Anna Maria!

  4. Congratulations!

  5. Congratulations (and readerly thanks) to all of you who got your respective acts together to write and submit an entry. Impressive stuff.
    Special congrats to Anna Maria for conjuring a delightful scene so playfully.

  6. What a delightful surprise! Thank you, friends! Can’t wait to sample my first of Talisker very soon.

  7. My husband, Steven D. Johnson, deserves partial credit for rhyming “desperado” and “avocado” at the dinner table a few nights before this poem was composed. After I read him the finished piece, he said, “What’s an ostinato?” and suddenly our seven-year-old began to sing, to the tune of “Frere Jacques”:
    Ostinato (ostinato)
    what are you? (what are you?)
    I’m a little pattern (I’m a little pattern)
    Stubborn too (stubborn too)

    One of the more innocuous songs she’s learned in public school.

  8. Congratulations, Anna-Maria (and family…)!

  9. Well done! Congrats!

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