Anna Ciummo is the recipient of The Dorie Renee Hogan Poetry Contest Prize for her collection, dreamflowers published by Asinimali Publications, Inc. The contest was creating in memory of Dorie Hogan, a resident of Tecumseh, KS and a student of the University of Kansas who passed away in a car crash on October 22, 1996. The contest allows female poets between the ages of 17-22 to submit their first book of poetry. Her poems speak to the experiences of college campus life, the changing seasons and finding one’s place in the world:
Perfecting one’s self can be
at least not as frustrating
as attempting to perfect another’s
our spirit’s posture
sits perfectly upright
while others slouch
or even lie down
for an afternoon nap
unsuspecting of their own
to be humane
ignorant of how the world works
not working themselves
never giving back a WONDER
to the world.
A thoughtful poem that mentions the spirit of humanity. I think it’s interesting that she speaks of “our spirit’s posture” whether the spirit inside of us slouches or sits upright, separating spirit from human form. Here she brings attention to the difference between the human spirit inside us despite our flesh. She brings attention to those who are trying to grow as people and those who “slouch,” are “ignorant of how the world works” and have no thought of working on themselves within a world filled with wonder. Which version are you?
How many years taken for that
to decide between the clothes, I liked
the ones that others liked
Even at eighteen
still unsure of
if I do what I want, really want
I’m still pulling this body of mine
from that mold of media, television
they pushed me inside and picked,
until I was just right.
This poem perfectly encapsulates life as a young adult. I remember feeling the need to fit in yet the struggle of trying to define myself outside of what media, family, friends, and college majors defined for me. This young lady may or may not realize that this will be a lifelong struggle. How many of us have changed careers multiple times seeking what fits us best? How many of us have redefined our sense of style, interests, friendships, as we’ve moved forward in life?
Anna Ciummo is a native from Kansas who is attending Washburn University of Topeka, she is a reporter for the campus newspaper and has begun work on a novel. You can find her on social media sites so please find her and support her work. If you enjoyed this sample, you may purchase a copy of Anna Ciummo’s dreamflowers for $5.00 at:
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