ROUND TWO: 10-piquant vs. 2-swipe

r2f1 10-piquant vs. 2-swipe

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:

Alligator Sauce Piquant
by Kristen Foote

I was bored cooking foods that were bland, lacking flavor – my meat sparsely speckled with spice.
I craved something Cajun, well-seasoned to savor. An alligator-steak would suffice.

So I chopped up an onion with peppered paprika. I measured the heat with a lick.
With tastebuds a tinglin’, I shouted, “Eureka! A piquant sauce – zesty, with kick!”

I slathered that reptile, head to his tail, preparing to grill him for lunch,
but in one hasty SNAP! all my prepping – a fail, ’cause that crook snatched my hands with one MUNCH!

Now with two hooks for hands I can’t scratch my own head, and I stab myself trying to floss.
I should’ve made sure that darn gator was dead (well, at least before adding the sauce).


In memory of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
by Ann Magee

O Moon, at last your face appears
When stars are scattered onto black.
Countless are your glowing tears–
How I long to swipe them back!

I’d plant them where the sea is wide–
Seeds sprouting with the fishes.
Stars would ride home on each tide
Granting loved-ones heartfelt wishes.


Public Vote (10-piquant vs. 2-swipe)
Final Results:
10-piquant vs. 2-swipe

Authlete Vote (ID Required)
Final Results:
10-piquant vs. 2-swipe
Classroom Vote (ID Required)
Final Results:
10-piquant vs. 2-swipe

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  • Heidi Mordhorst

    This is a hard one–so very, very different in tone and, well, flavor. I’m off to ponder a while….

  • Damon Dean

    Kristen, a sure-fire recipe for hilarity!!!!
    Ann, that solemn moon’s soft light reflects your (and our) somber empathy for those hurting from this tragedy. Beautiful prayer.
    Very different tones indeed. Great job, poets.

  • Mother Streusel

    Wow!!! These are polar opposites in subject, style, length. Excellent on both counts.

  • Kristen Foote

    Different for sure – I feel bad that my silly poem is up against one that is a tribute! Great work Ann! :)

  • deborahhwilliams

    Kristen, your poem is a spicy gumbo! Our town’s only Cajun restaurant closed this year, and you made me miss it all over again!

  • CatherinePoet

    A fun alligator poem and a lovely tribute to a very sad event.

  • Melinda Harvey

    Ann, heartfelt and beautiful. This poem needs to be seen in other places besides just this tournament!

    • Ann Magee

      Thanks, Melinda, for your encouraging comment. It’s a subject I can’t help thinking about. I would love to share it elsewhere.

  • Buffy Silverman

    Love the silliness of your gator recipe, Kristen. And that’s a lovely tribute, Ann.

  • Debra Shumaker

    Both excellent poems, just so very different from each other. The vote was tough – I wish both of you could move on!

  • Elizabeth McBride

    Thank you both! Ann, how compassionate of you to write something to give voice to these losses.
    Kristen, what fun and zesty humor! Great job, both of you!

  • Quinette Cook

    Kristen, It’s always good to make sure you’re alligator is dead before saucing. ;)
    Ann, your poem speaks for all of us.

  • Bonnie Bailey

    Kristen, I can’t help but think how you type your poems with two hooks for hands… :) Nice work, both of you. Hard to vote for one.

    • Kristen Foote

      Very slowly… and carefully – lol :)

  • Gloson

    Nice poem, Kristen! I loved the last two lines and it made me smile. My friend Kay Jun wouldn’t like the fact that you craved something Cajun. Hahahaha.
    As a Malaysian, thanks for writing about the flight, Ann. It was a lovely, artistic tribute.

  • Samuel Kent

    What a tough, touch choice. I think I need to come back to this one. Humor vs. Emotional. Both with such vivid imagery. I need to digest these two a bit, I think.

  • Mother Streusel

    Congratulations Kristen!! Ann, I get the feeling that your poem has more to offer than just an entry in this competition. Thank you both for contributing such talent!

    • Ann Magee

      Thanks so much for your comment. I will share it elsewhere as well!

    • Kristen Foote

      Thank you and see you in the next round!!! :)

  • Ldegman

    Congratulations, Kristen! Good luck in round 3!

    • Kristen Foote

      Thanks Lori!! See you there!! (and thanks for the exciting match-up in Round 2 – you kept everyone guessing until the very end – so much fun!!!) :)

  • Ann Magee

    Congratulations, Kristen. Have fun next round–go get em’!

    • Kristen Foote

      I don’t think my comments are saving for some reason – so I hope this doesn’t post twice…. but thanks for the great match-up Ann! I am sure this won’t be the last time we are seeing your poem! :)

  • Damon Dean

    Congrats Kristen! Looking forward to your offerings in upcoming rounds.
    Ann, with each newscast on the tragedy, I am seeing your sky and moon and stars. Heart felt recognition of the deep loss.

    • Ann Magee

      Thanks, Damon. I’m glad what I wrote resonates with you.