Winterstomp Poems 2014

3 Mar


The farmer and his hands

His family and his crops

Tending to his lands

‘Neath gentle water drops

Bereft of all worries

He works from night to day

Back and forth he hurries

Feet to mud and clay

When his jobs are done

He donates fruits of labors

To each and everyone

To town and to his neighbors

While gray and clouded skies

Beckon forth more rain

He’s in his fields of rye

Harvesting the grain

He cares not for himself

Before his fellow mate

Putting food on shelf

And dinner on the plate

The callused sturdy hands

The strong and warming heart

He loves his own homeland

And farming is his art.

– Temo Larrabee – MVHS senior

Have a poem for Winterstomp? Send it to us!  Our contest is on hiatus this year, while we do things like start new jobs and get married and etc. But we’d still love to read and share your poems. Email your submission to: jodiebuller (at) gmail (dot) com

Winterstomp 2013 Germination Poetry Contest Winners

28 Mar

Our hearty congratulations to Kyp Bisagna,  Anne Basye  and Anna Ferdinand – the winners of the 2013 Winter Stomp Poetry Contest. 

You can hear them read their poems on the radio on April 4 during Skagit By Hand on Skagit Talks,  which airs Thursdays at 5pm on KSVR, KSVU, KSJI Community Radio for the Skagit. The archive of that show will be on the Skagit By Hand website.

The poetry contest subject this year:  Germinate

Here are their winning poems,  Enjoy!!


Do not let the days of January pass too quickly
though the world without is an empty room
where branches etch their broken ciphers
and cold is banked against the door

These are the days of the beginning of hunger
that draw the deep heart back
from darkness

On silent feet and shifting shadow
gracefully recalled
with every quiet gesture

Drainage ditches rimed in ice
reflecting a sky as smooth as silver
charm the narrow heron
grey-fluted as the wind
that whispers like a name rarely spoken,
tasting of light

And buds emmarrowed in the bones
of black-silhouetted trees stir
to the dreaming of bees

First the hunger, then the moan,
the surrender, the rush, the roar
the rose, the shining


The force that through the green fuse drives: sonnet inspired by Dylan Thomas

 – Anne Basye

Much movement in little space:  that’s the story

of seeds.  Life chains us to old canards:

mighty oaks from tiny acorns grow

etcetera,  but when each year wheels past,  oaks

from acorns grow again.  And not just oaks.  Everything

glistening on this plate began obscurely

specks dropped careless or poked by trowel and finger,

resting a spell in utter dark until the force

that through the green etcetera splits

said speck and something new, a sci-fi tentacle

unfurls and gropes a fraction down,  a fraction more.

Open. Sink.  Stretch towards the sun.  Accident

or purpose,  from darkness,  silence,  tight quarters

the force etcetera drives green seed to salad.



– Anna Ferdinand

Windswept earth and a leaden sky is heavy with potential

There is death in this air,  only darkness and end times

And friends are barren trees with no leaves,

And the mourning for joy is like melting glacier pouring from mountain peak

And life is like slogging through muddy fields

Amidst Cornstalks trodden into wet soggy earth

Run over by scavengers that feed on the decay

Hovering in the branches on talons


The bay beyond,  stretches out to the Middle East,

Evident by idling oil tankers amidst islands darkened by rain shadow

Cutting through this vision of apocalyptic doom,

I see a locomotive pulling car after car after car,

Brimming with black ore,  dug from Crow land

I hear the rumble,  the harbinger of the end,

Carrying soon to be soot in factory chimneys

Littering the tracks with black dust as it goes,

Now stopping me in my tracks

I have eased in behind a pick-up,  also stopped, with a bumper sticker which reads,

No coal terminal at Cherry Point


“The irony,” I say out loud

And feel secretly that we have lost,  waiting here at dusk

For the train to pass


That night pain of this apocalyptic feeling,  the ugliness of barren trees and gouged earth

It cuts my insides,  and I want to escape my body,

Dance like the eagles with the wind,  rise in loping flight like the heron,  dive like the hawk

Away to another tree,  the next piling or a stone at water’s edge

Funny,  But I remember in the darkness that attachment creates suffering,

And with this thought,  the pain of the labor of change subsides

Comes back again and subsides

Breathe out the destruction and in the rebirth

Big breath


After the long night I am to go to eat beignets at the home of a conifer,

Whose verdant life remains year round,  season after season

As I back out of muddy gravel driveway,  I see for the first time

That the spindly arms of my current reaching to the sky

Are transformed with buds, holding life. I’d forgotten

And I see shoots of fresh rose now,  emerging from apparently dead wood

And I catch the deep purple of crocus between the legs of the emerging rose,

And notice that the green shoots of Iris are immutably,  irrepressibly pushing through earth

And I remember that peony will soon wake from a long slumber


Driving down riverside then,  along curving river,  a coal train snakes upstream to my left

It is not stopping me,  I move against it easily,  facing it head on as it slithers past

I remember now,  from this perspective,  the night when people gathered

Standing tall before a government board,  with singular beauty

Like the crocus,  the rhododendron,  the rose,  and the current,  the morning glory and the crabapple

The plum,  cherry,  and apple blossoms,  the devil’s club,  the dahlias with their beautiful faces

They all came to life in one astonishing bouquet,  bound with red

To stand in water against this train which cuts the insides and said,  not through our garden!

And I remember,  as I pass car after car,  that dormant in folks,  like the blossoms and shoots,

Resides this potential,  always,  to bloom again.


WinterStomp Farms and Food Poetry Contest 2013

7 Jan

We have arrived at winter again and it is time to enter the second annual WinterStomp Farms and Food Poetry Contest!

Submissions should be original, unpublished work in the following category:


Contest Guidelines:

Winners will receive a gift card to the Co-op and the opportunity to read their poem on the radio during Skagit By Hand on Skagit Talks, which airs on KSVR 91.7 and KSVU 90.1 on Thursday April 4th at 5pm.  Anyone residing in northwestern Washington is eligible enter poems.

Deadline for Submissions: February 28, 2012

Submit poems c/o Jodie Buller at the Skagit Valley Food Co-op

202 S First Street Mount Vernon WA 98273 or email:cooproom(at)gmail(dot)com

* Please submit no more than one poem.

* Poems should be single-spaced, single-sided pages, no more than three pages long.

* The author retains copyright on the poems, although WINTERSTOMP has the right to publish the poems online and in a potential (forthcoming?) anthology, and to read on the radio.

* Three winners will be selected by a three person committee.

Winterstomp will return to the Lincoln next February (2014) for a lively performance and musical celebration of our farming and food community! Until then, catch us on the radio on Skagit by Hand, KSVR 91.7, Thursdays at 5pm.

Winterstomp this year?

7 Nov

Hi all – if you’re visiting this page for info about what’s happening with Winterstomp and such, we have to disappoint you a bit. We couldn’t get the date we were hoping for at the Lincoln this year, and there are MANY MANY other things happening… so we’re going to do it biennale-style, every other year.

Look for Winterstomp on February 2ndish, 2014. In the meantime, splash yer boots in a couple of Skagit’s ginormous puddles,  kick yer heels high,  get your groove on,  read a poem out loud,  support your local farms and producers,  and hold the banner HIGH.

We believe in you, we support you, we’ll bring the music and the poetry, next time around. Rain check?


19 Oct

Skagit Valley Food Co-op and the Lincoln Theatre Present:


An Evening Festival of Music, Dancing and Poetry

Celebrating Farm and Food Traditions in the Skagit Valley

Saturday February 4th 2012, 6-10pm, doors at 5pm

Lincoln Theatre, downtown Mount Vernon

Tickets $10-15

Available HERE