ROUND TWO: 12-prescient vs. 13-baroque

r2f1 12-prescient vs. 13-baroque

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 Fortune Teller
by Heidi Mordhorst

I don’t need a crystal ball;
I don’t read your palm.
I was born with inner sight;
Prediction keeps me calm.

I see what will befall you;
Your fate is in my hands.
Precious is what they call me;
Prescient is what I am.


The Music in Me
by Samuel Kent

My belly’s making melody:
a borborygmus song,
a tuneful tummy symphony
baroque and bold and strong.
My stomach sings euphonious,
but I deserve my fate…
I’m happily harmonious
from all the beans I ate.


Public Vote (12-prescient vs. 13-baroque)
Final Results:
12-prescient vs. 13-baroque

Authlete Vote (ID Required)
Final Results:
12-prescient vs. 13-baroque
Classroom Vote (ID Required)
Final Results:
12-prescient vs. 13-baroque

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  • Angie Kidd

    Borborygmus is such a cool word! Still, I can’t predict who will win… I’m no fortune teller.

  • Damon Dean

    We are often “happily harmonious” at our house too, Samuel.
    If only we Heidi’s prescience to give us a fair warning…

  • Mother Streusel

    Great job!!!! The Fortune Teller puts prescient on a pedestal while The Music in Me sneaks baroque in so that you almost miss it.

    • Samuel Kent

      I wouldn’t call it sneaking. At the risk of sounding defensive, I made an effort to include the word in a way that it was defined contextually.

      • Mother Streusel

        Oh! Well then let me clarify what I meant, since it was intended to be a high compliment. I think any time the key word “sneaks” past me, it means it fits perfectly into the style and sound of the poem. That is very, very hard to do, especially with a word like baroque.

      • Heidi Mordhorst

        I think you’ve managed something we might call “shooting the moon”–you went above and beyond the given word to include yet “seedier” words, in a sensible context, all in what is nearly a farting poem. I commend you, my worthy opponent! Yet I do by no means concede….

        • Samuel Kent

          You can chalk up my subject matter to being surrounded by Cub Scouts all weekend. In this tournament, I think that to shoot the moon properly, I would have also needed a mention of an aardvark.

  • Catherine Johnson

    Love these!

  • Bonnie Bailey

    Haha, nice job guys :D

  • deborahhwilliams

    Wow, Samuel–You’ve come a long way from the “Beans, beans” song I knew as a kid! Love borborygmus and euphonius!

  • Renee LaTulippe

    Fun words to play with in Samuel’s poem, but Heidi’s prescience mesmerized me!

  • Buffy Silverman

    I love the mood you’ve created for Precious, Heidi. And Samuel–what a symphony of sounds (glad no internet smells!)

    • Ed DeCaria

      There are numerous companies working on “smell dongles” for smartphones, to enable “smell notifications” or wake-up alarms or whatever. Heck, even Oscar Mayer has an app that lets you smell bacon.

  • Elizabeth McBride

    Round Two is soooo hard! Every kid loves poems involving body noises! But telling the future – well, we know there is no need to guess about that either! Great job, both of you!

  • Stephanie Farrow

    Samuel, you’re only the second person I know who has ever used the word borborygmus in a poem–and the other one was a physician!

  • Quinette Cook

    It’s hard to predict which poem will be winner, but I think I know now what I’m having for dinner.

    • Samuel Kent

      Be prescient, my precious, when choosing legumes: prepare first for dinner, but later for fumes.

      • Ed DeCaria

        You’ve thought a lot about this topic, haven’t you?

        • Samuel Kent

          With three sons, I believe that the best response here is: perpetually.

          • Quinette Cook

            Daughters toot too!

            • Samuel Kent

              Yes, absolutely true. Fortunately, they tend to demonstrate the grace of becoming more subtle/discrete as they age, whereas with my boys, it’s becomes an art form/competition.

  • julie krantz

    Another tough one, guys. Enjoyed BOTH of these!

  • Joe Mohr

    2 terrific poems!!!

  • Mother Streusel

    Congratulations Samuel! You did an exceptional job! Great work Heidi! Thoroughly enjoyable!!!

  • Ldegman

    Amazing poems, Heidi and Samuel! As a Tarot card reader, I loved Heidi’s poem and as a mother of two boys, I definitely related to Samuel’s! I knew, if I managed to win round 2, I’d be in for a tough match in round 3, no matter who won! I think, if I want to win the next round, I’ll have to give up sleep!!

  • Damon Dean

    Loved both of these again! Samuel, your rumbling victory deserves congrats and a roll of Tums.
    Heidi, loved your mysterious character.