ROUND TWO: 10-alternative vs. 2-quell

r2f2 10-alternative vs. 2-quell

Click here for authlete instructions.

Voter Instructions:

  • The countdown at the bottom of each pairing indicates how much time is left to vote.
    • When voting closes, timer will disappear.
  • Read both poems as many times as you like.
  • Mark the poem you like best by clicking the circle next to its name.
  • Press the “Vote” button to record your vote.
  • Votes are counted in real time and cannot be changed once entered.
  • You can only vote once from a given IP address.
    • Classrooms should submit one vote as a class.
    • Students can then vote again individually from home.

Things to Consider in Making a Choice:

  • How well the poem incorporates the authlete’s assigned word.
  • Technical elements: meter, rhyme, form, shape, and other poetic standards.
  • Creativity: wordplay, imagery, unusual approach, etc.
  • Subtle elements that make the whole greater than the sum of its parts.
  • Your overall response: emotional reaction such as admiration, tears, laughter, terror, or some indefinable feeling.

Here are the poems:

The Next Big Thing
by Ally Keenan

Reckless celebrity, be charged for that ridiculous crime.
Inspiring actor, please forget your life changing line.
No need to fret, for I will have their scenes perfected just in time.

Dedicated gymnast, slip from those parallel bars;
Fearless astronaut, dangle helplessly among the stars.
I’ll be there waving to you as you drift past Mars.

I’m the Understudy, the alternative; second best,
But believe me, someday, I’ll be considered better than the best.


How To Quell A Smell
by Bruce Balan

Are there fish in your trousers?
Blue cheese in your hair?
Check under your hat…
is a skunk hiding there?

To quell all these odors
here’s a tip I’ll disclose:
Take an extra-large clothespin
and clip on your nose.


Public Vote (10-alternative vs. 2-quell)
Final Results:
10-alternative vs. 2-quell

Authlete Vote (ID Required)
Final Results:
10-alternative vs. 2-quell
Classroom Vote (ID Required)
Final Results:
10-alternative vs. 2-quell

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  • Quinette Cook

    I love the positive outlook of Ally’s poem and who doesn’t want to walk around with a clothespin pinned to their nose. Wait, I don’t! :)

  • Mother Streusel

    Wow! Impressive!!

  • Bonnie Bailey

    Nice Ally. You painted some really creative images here. I like the tone of the narrator. Bruce, heh heh heh… :D

  • Ally Keenan

    Great job, Bruce! I was nervous when I saw that I was up against you this round, because I really liked your first (and second!) poem in this competition. You even got my authlete vote last round :)

  • Catherine

    Ally your poetry is sublime and Bruce yours is really funny.

    • Ally Keenan

      Thank you so much, Catherine. That was so extremely nice of you, it means a lot to me.

  • BJ Lee

    LOL, Bruce! and Ally, poignant!

  • Elizabeth McBride

    Ally, what a great idea – focusing on the understudy in the wings (but not too far away). And Bruce, you’ve got third graders pegged!

    • Ally Keenan

      Thank you so much, Elizabeth! :)

  • Buffy Silverman

    Nice to shine the light on the understudies of the world, Ally. And Bruce, you made me laugh aloud (and brought back all sorts of childhood images of clothespins on the nose!)

  • Heidi Mordhorst

    I really enjoyed the approach of Ally’s poem; it made me forget what word she was writing with, and the structure worked very well too. Bruce’s is short, stinky, and to the point!

  • Damon Dean

    Bruce, your poem was a quick sniff of hilarity. Loved it.
    Ally, I love your understudy perspective, I almost fell the drool for a chance to step up!
    Great poems, both!

  • Mother Streusel

    I loved this unique match up! Great job Bruce! Loved your unique poem Ally! Congrats!