Adult Category - 1st Place Winner

Congrats to Kelli Allen for winning 1st place in the 2016 Pandora's Collective Annual Poetry Contest.






This Is How You Ask Me to Pray

Now we might understand the crow
when she kisses her beak to his, 

the lover, the sleeper tired of us,
but not the expanse above 

our dusty spaces. How many times
have we walked beneath the tree 

and mistaken the low cries
for some weird wind? We know

our haunches resist the dirt
when we lean back against 

the old church wall in its yard, a plow
and apple cart set as stage pieces 

to catch the feathers ruffled hard
and down from bird tongues

too tangled to believe. When you stop
us both under the last branch, this October 

day, we do not join hands, nor fall
asleep, no hooves tampering

leafy beds, or palms covering knees
when the kneel becomes inevitable.


Kelli Allen