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Contest winners photos and logo

Wisconsin People & Ideas, our quarterly magazine of contemporary Wisconsin thought and culture, presents a special Wisconsin Book Festival reading featuring the winners of our statewide Fiction & Poetry Con

For those of us who have been taking shelter among words during the Covid-19 pandemic, a new collection of Wisconsin poetry created just for the occasion has arrived.

There’s something to be saidabout standing on the center lineof a bustling four-lane road,cars skimming by in front and behind meas I watch my stainless steel thermosbumble along toward the opposite curb

There’s a truck double-parked in the only parking spot.The guy at the counter owns a construction business,

First, find the reliquary:Collect the bones of the mammoth,regurgitated onto the shoreby the agitate cycle of thawing permafrost,rinse clean by the frigid lake’s lapping,swelled in a jumble of reeds

A man on a bicycle.Does he strain into his vocal cordsbecause he is angry, wonderwhy he is riding on this trackgoing around in circlesas his life seems to veer offin jagged directions, no winding

Photo of book jacket cover and author

What constitutes reality and what is merely enticing fantasy?

First cited in the sixteenth century (specifically in a book called Dice-Play), the expression [brown study]—which describes a state of intense, sometimes melancholy reverie, really seems to have hit i

of the need for lyricwhispers and fingertipsbehind my earlike a distant melody

of dappled water that flowswhere tulips opentheir soft petals spreadinglike a morning yawn

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