Top poems selected

South Cariboo Writers’ Guild happy with spring poem contest

The South Cariboo Writers’ Guild spokesperson Kimberly VanderHorst says they had some great entries in the guild’s recent poetry contest, which had a spring theme.

“When we formed the South Cariboo Writers’ Guild our primary goals were to promote literacy in our community, support our local writers, and encourage members of our community to make use of their creative gifts. In sponsoring our first writing contest, we hoped to achieve all those goals in one fell swoop.”

The number of entries far exceeded our expectations, as did the quality, VanderHorst adds.

“We’re stunned by the many hidden talents in our area and feel so fortunate to have been allowed to enjoy them. We hope those who weren’t selected will enter future contests.”

Regarding this particular contest, she notes the entries were judged based on originality, use of language, rhythm and flow, and emotional power.

“The first prize winner and honourable mention both wrote poems that blew us away in all those categories. It was no easy thing to choose between the two!

“Both poems were full of gorgeous, spring-inspired imagery.”


First place

Carmen Wiebe’s poem, Spring Takes Flight, was selected for first place and she was pleased her poem was selected.

“I didn’t know what to expect when I entered the poetry contest, being new to the South Cariboo, but I was excited to have the opportunity to write. My poetry comes in small waves of inspiration and this contest was good motivation.”

Wiebe says she was inspired by the endless amount of birds in the South Cariboo and wanted to capture an up-and-down motion in the poem alongside the stretch and pull of spring.

“Spring can be drab and dramatic at the same time and I tried to focus on that. When I heard that my poem won, I was stoked and I am excited to write even more.”

Spring Takes Flight

By Carmen Wiebe

hawks keep watch; drift over

100 monochromatic miles

frozen in the changing of seasons


red-winged blackbirds’ trill

weaves through the shimmering

floral sunset reflecting tangerine


a kaleidoscope of birdsong

ice-locked in Lac La Hache


gray persists, leaning on

tired fenceposts and dull barbed wire

100 monochromatic miles


interrupted by flit and flutter of

male mountain bluebird

azure paintbrush on the wind


wind that flies through with hail

on her coattails, douglas fir trembling


100 monochromatic miles

preening until verdant buds burst,

meltwater trickles downward

gravity pulls and spring takes flight


Honourable mention

Elisha Campbell says she was very pleased to have her poem, Etherealism, selected as the honourable mention.

“I am ecstatic to have been chosen as an honourable mention, and I look forward to reading the first prize piece as well.

Campbell adds the inspiration for her poem was actually a scene that floated into her mind’s eye as she sat thinking about spring mornings/evenings.

“All I could envision was silver fog drifting through black tree trunks in the dim light; it always looks magical and vaguely like something out of a fantasy story in my mind. With that image in my head, I simply sat down and began to write.”



By Elisha Campbell

In early April

I came across a place

where even darkness

held its breath,

stillness draped itself

over each limb and branch.


Overcome with heaviness

I sat amidst tendrils of fog,

listened to unspoken stories

of a lonesome dryad.


A lifetime passed

when slowly the mists parted,

revealed a figure

beckoning me further

into the embrace of ebon-clothed trees.


I followed her

into the depths of silence

and lost myself

in the spaces between time.

VanderHorst says the guild members really enjoyed these poems, and look forward to holding more contests in the future.

“We’re so grateful to the 100 Mile House Free Press for publishing the winners and helping their lovely words find a wider audience.”

To learn more about The South Cariboo Writers’ Guild and how to be a part of it, information can be found at www.SouthCaribooWriters.Com or by contacting Kimberly VanderHorst at

All skills levels are welcome, she adds.