McDonald Family Christmas Contest 2006 - Sonnets tree

Judges: Lynn Bagnell, Mickey and Cheryl Van Metre

2006 Contest Announcement


Thomas McDonald, Sr --- First Place

The Old Dirt Road


I know a road, an old dirt road
On an island surrounded by sea.
Long ago an indian path
Hidden by brush and by tree.

Now, where feet and hoofs once tred
Run wheels of bikes and cars,
And trucks rumble through dirt and dust
Leaving ruts, temporary scars.

But stand in this dusty road and see.
When morning sun streams through
The covering limbs of live oak trees
Lighting this avenue.

In the warming glow of bright sun rays
Sparkling dust and sand specs rise
And dance and sing a colorful song,
A tune heard only through one’s eyes.

Now you’ve seen the dirt road gleam,
A visual feast, an artist’s dream.

Ingrid McDonald --- Third Place

Where Am I?

Came poets and I from foreign shores,
Spellbound by the Ligurian beauty.
Stood I on same cliff of their poetic lores,
Gazing awed at the sun baked scenery.
A mass of zigzag pastel’d villas, stores.
The Muse whispers: your chance at poetry.
As did it to Lord Byron, Shelly, Keats.
Can my sonnet bring me immortality?
Days pass, and now from air, new scene in view.
What’s this, seems odd, the water there for sure,
But what order, symmetry down below.
No mountains block the expansure.
Coco cola is served, the wine doesn’t flow,
Oh, I’m homeward bound from my adventure.

Lyla McDonald

Jarred from my sleep by early morning fear
Fighting the panic and feelings of dread
What causes these anxieties is not clear
Why are these demons living in my head?

Worrying about my success on the job
Wondering what in the house will go wrong
How to handle the demands of the mob
Will the health of those I love remain strong?

Gradually inner strength is awaken
Squelching the terrors of early morning
The alarm goes off and I am unshaken
Ignoring my subliminal warning

I lift my head feeling the warmth of the Sun
And resolve to live and enjoy a day full of fun

Laura McDonald

Ode to A Contest

In nineteen ninety this nonsense began
Participants were few, Austin phoned his in
calendars were next for the McDonald clan
Opapu judged, Mom's stained glass did not win

Mobiles, puppets, make a nephew's book page
the competition was seriously no joke
Gilbert and Sullivan karaokers took the stage
Opapu built alliances with those who smoke

Most won fair and square but bribes were flowing
Comic strips, white trash cooks, a poetry slam
Stuffed toys don't necessarily require sewing
Dad's winning mosaic was replaced with a ham

This year the sonnet is harder than the rest
I say that every year but I give it my best

Lynda McDonald Rock

A Family that Plays Together…

We are a fortunate family, no doubt
Cuz we can get together year after year (after year, after year)
So, maybe it was to let some steam out
And provide a venue to drink her home brewed beer

That 17 years ago Laura sent us the rules,
A Gorey on ice and a short story to write.
Now, we pick judges, give them money and jewels
In hopes that we’ll win this year’s bragging rights.

But, far from relieving stress and keeping us close
These competitions create a world of strife
Bribes, sabotage, thievery and low blows
Pitting brother against sister, husband against wife.

But, don’t dwell on that now and without further ado
I present this year’s Christmas Competition to You.

Dutifully submitted by Lynda Rock for the 2006 Christmas Competition

Graeme Austin Rock

My Life as a Video Game Character

I wake up to the voice of a large man
Telling me how I can move, jump, and punch.
I run away fast fearing that his plan
Is to possibly eat me for his lunch.

He changes into a monster creature
And ever so calmly chases after.
I face him and fix his colorature
With my “Ultimate-Inferno Blaster.”

I block a square white ball flying at my goal.
Martians come and devour my rover.
A zombie jumps at me and takes my soul.
A sign in front of me says “Game Over.”

My life and these games are synonymous.
Maybe I need Gamers Anonymous.

Wayne Capps

Christmas Sonnet #11

We made it back to Christmas, but, that means
Old Nature's laws of things require that
O six be blasted all to smithereens.
On second thought, a mortal hanging yet!

Perhaps the mime, his lack of speech applied
Ironic'ly to clarify his muse,
Makes sense. These thoughts, through verse, are fortified
With six taut knots to tighten the noose:

Reflect, and after all that's said and done,
the tree, the golden bells, and silver chains
the laughs, two-thousand-six, are all but gone,
the food and wine, no, none of them remain

So as the year before and year ahead
Again begin until the end instead.

Lenore McDonald --- Second Place

The Best Medicine


The result of a test was just the start
Lynda and I would begin our new bout
Three weeks later I was short a small part
Perhaps a pound less to carry about

More testing was done and what did I find
To hang with Lynda, a new battle scar
Though next to Lynda I was still behind
But inch per inch, I was not off by far

While it’s true I’m no longer a Breck Girl
Water, shampoo bills are in the black now
Nothing remains for my fingers to twirl
I now have more time to spend in bed, wow

While modern medicine is great for sure
Laughter and family is the best cure

This sonnet was written while under the influence of Taxol
and Carboplatin. It is dedicated to my family and Paula.

This was presented as a Powerpoint presentation
with great pictures.

Paula Lauer

Snow Ball: A Shakespearean Sonnet

Silent at first and gently dusting all
the sharp-edged shapes with rounded curves and blue
shadows, painted in broad strokes, bold and tall
next to pine-scented giants with a new
role in a sparkling, swirling, ballroom dream
where sunflower skeletons laugh and sway
and grasses waltz in a dappled moon beam
to muffled music frozen branches play.

The crowd murmurs from beneath its white quilt
“Bravo, bravo -- I say, what a fine show!”
Their jaunty hats pile high, then slowly tilt
as the woodwind section gives one last blow
So swiftly started, now swiftly it dies
A winter garden in snowy disguise.

This was presented as a Powerpoint presentation
with great pictures.

Hoops (Paula's Cat)

Little Cat Feet Indeed


You might think of me as a neer do well;
My existence only benefits me.
Your sweet-voiced pleas do nothing to compel
Any urge but one, and that is to flee.

I hold no grudge, though I remain aloof;
I possess a feral spirit unknown
By such simian beasts with mere thumbs as proof
That earthly status and stature has grown.

‘Tis I who balance nine lives in this world;
I tread where waking and dreaming are one
As I lounge in your lap with my tail curled
And purr to tell you my work here is done.

Yes, I’m your pet, I admit it’s true
But let’s not forget, ‘tis I who own you.

Austin McDonald

From the start of our lively being we desire and grow in love’s attention
For we suckle on that first breast and nurture in its abundant fair
But how then is it taken, covered, buttoned and never again pulled to us bare
So is it not in that first love, that we find the love’s first shun
Oh woe is that mind that is left wallowing in that sallowing run
Sure we adapt, to go find alternate finger, or cone, but none do compare
For there is just that one that was to come so sweetly by God’'s care
How can we then allow it to be worshipped by a younger sibling one
Cry out Ye Magistrates cry out aloud
For tis a crimer and a shamer that we must review
How do we know that God is meaning all that is allowed
Do we not still need that which is given and then repewed
But in even that thought there is this thought for the crowd stated
With that first shun we learn that love is so much more than what is just viewed and tasted.

William Graham --- Provided the idea for this year's contest

Two eastern guys, they almost had it right
There’s oat and wheat and rye. But corn grows high
But not so much to give those eyes a fright.
And Christmas is cold, brown, windy and dry.

The same tree, same lights, every single year
But nights so bright stars seem to hide the sky.
For, everything in place, the thought seems clear:
A place for everything, and mine is here.

We open stockings first. Each hand made and
Cherished from birth. Then presents. One by one;
calm and collected but never quite bland.
Neat, clean and tidy. Order will have won.

But still, in Okie land somehow I know,
More fun is had down in Edisto.

Thomas McDonald, Jr

When I was young I had a brother named Luke
Then one day he left us without a trace.
A few years later he showed up a Leia in some lace
All the people were thinking certaintly this is a fluke,
But she could still fight like the duke.
It began that cold December night when he was taken up in space.
All the aliens agreed he was very pretty and changed his gender case.
That is when the aliens changed his shape until it made her puke.
During the Christmas season as you pass all the lighted trailers in their glory
Remember it was during this time of the year that aliens kidnap men to blister.
We hope you take heed and believe in Luke’s and my story.
So, if your brother goes missing take a real close look at your sister.
As of now our family consists of Diner, Luke, Leia, and Cory.
However, people still do not know to call him/her, Miss or Mister.