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Wild Heart Poetry Contest

Thank you to everyone who submitted to this contest. It has been such an honor getting to read all of your amazing poetry. Each poem really has the feeling that humanity is a part of nature, rather than a separate entity. It was wonderful and refreshing to see such unique ideas and creative imagery. It just goes to show how much can be learned from stepping outside and being curious about what we see in the sky, in the garden, or walking down the street. A big congratulations to our winner, runner ups, finalists, and everyone who contributed to this anthology. I hope you never lose touch with your wild hearts. And if you ever feel that inspiration is hard to find, (we all get stuck sometimes), don’t forget to go outside and take it all in.


Unleash your wild side and discover the winner of our Wild Heart poetry contest!

Without further adieu, the winner of this spring’s Wild Heart Contest is…………

(drum roll please)

Heather Mackay - “Things To Do When Stuck Inside a Closed Daffodil”

Heather Mackay Young is a poet, healer and graduate of The Glasgow School of Art. Her writing has been published by Poet Lore, Hummingbird Press, and Olney Magazine. In 2022 she co-created an exhibition called Alchemy, a collaborative conversation about paint, poetry and place with artist Rebecca Styles. She is the 2023 Anne-Marie Oomen Literary Fellow at Poetry Forge. Heather lives and writes on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland where she works toward the restoration of a land based poetics rooted in the unwritten histories of her ancestors.

The first runner up is:

Mykyta Ryzhykh - “***”

Hi! I am Mykyta Ryzhykh from Ukraine (Nova Kakhovka Citу). Winner of the international competition «Art Against Drugs», bronze medalist of the festival Chestnut House, laureate of the literary competition named after Tyutyunnik. Long list of awards Lyceum, Twelve, awards named after Dragomoshchenko.

The second runner up is:

Oladejo Abdullah Feranmi - “The Thorns and Their Rose”

Oladejo Abdullah Feranmi is a Poet, writer, and veterinary medicine student from Ibadan, Nigeria. An Haikuist, He reads submissions at Sea glass literary magazine and edits for the incognito press. His works are published in Gone Lawn, Hooligan Magazine, The Lumiere Review, and more. He tweets from; @oaferanmi_

Top finalists:

Crystal Eidson - “mycelia”

C.V. Eidson is a lifelong Chicagoan who lives with a devoted husband, two dogs and a serpent. She pays the bills with a succession of low-level office jobs, and spends her spare energy creating whatever she can.

Manasvini Ranganathan- “Waiting for Cherry Blossoms"

My name is Manasvini Ranganathan. I am a legal professional working in the social sector in Bangalore, India. I am passionate about the environment, gender rights and enjoy exploring intersections between Law and literature in my writing. Please feel free to reach out to me for collaborations or discussions. Instagram handle: @manasranganathan, Twitter handle: @manasranga

James B. Nicola - “Late Winner Puddle”

James B. Nicola's seven full-length poetry collections (2014-2022) are Manhattan Plaza, Stage to Page: Poems from the Theater, Wind in the Cave, Out of Nothing: Poems of Art and Artists, Quickening: Poems from Before and Beyond, Fires of Heaven: Poems of Faith and Sense, and Turns & Twists. His poetry and prose have appeared in Wingless Dreamer; the Antioch, Southwest, Green Mountains, and Atlanta Reviews; Rattle; Barrow Street; Tar River; and Poetry East, garnering two Willow Review awards, a Dana Literary award, ten Pushcart nominations, a Best of the Net nom, a Rhysling nom, plus a People's Choice award from Storyteller magazine, for which he feels both stunned and grateful. His theater career culminated in his nonfiction book Playing the Audience, which won a Choice award. A Yale graduate and returning contributor to Wingless Dreamer, he hosts the Hell's Kitchen International Writers' Roundtable at his local library branch in Manhattan: walk-ins welcome.

Anna Querica-Thomas - “All Drawl, No Humor”

A.C. Partridge is a Hispanic American writer, theatre-maker, and PhD candidate living in Western Australia. She writes speculative fiction and poetry about found family, queer romance, and connection in dark times.

Ella Abraham - “A Wreath For a Peony”

Ella is an enthusiastic writer from Australia who adores creating prose, poems, and even song lyrics. She enjoys editing and dreams of becoming a professional editor, as well as a published author and an English teacher. She currently owns a popular account on Instagram which provides useful advice, motivation and inspiration for writers and can be found under the username @sincerely_writes.

We would also like to thank all of the other writers whose poems were shortlisted and included in this anthology. Each and every poem brings something unique to this collection of astounding nature poetry. The Wild Heart contest and anthology would not have been possible without so many amazing submissions.

We would like to encourage all of the submitters to keep a look out for future contests as we are always open for submissions and have many fun themes to submit to throughout the year. It would be an honor to read more work from each and every one of you.

We would also like to encourage our submitters and other writers out there to never lose touch with their wild heart. There is so much wonder to discover out there. Stay curious and keep writing!

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