Our 2022 winner was the unanimous choice of our judges. Annabelle Mazur is from Maple Creek, Saskatchewan where, in her words, “there are seldom opportunities for creative writing from a high school student to be celebrated.” We are pleased to celebrate her work here.
Annabelle will be attending the University of Calgary, majoring in psychology with a minor in English.
“Since I was little, my biggest dream has been to become a writer,” says Annabelle. “As I got older, though, people kept telling me that it wasn’t a viable dream. When I decided to submit these poems, I had never shared them with anyone, so it was nerve-racking. When I received the call to say I had won, it was like all those dreams I had were more within my reach than I thought possible.”
She cut her hair.
A sacrilegious moment it seemed,
A monumental shift in a woman’s world,
Changing appearance for the next male’s gaze,
To whomever it may appeal.
Dyed, or natural,
All in the eye of the beholder.
A perfect semblance of what is,
And what is no longer.
Cutting her hair, it seemed,
Was the exchange for cutting off an appendage.
Rather than acknowledging the absence of her heart.
The hollow chamber.
As instead of a clean cut,
It would be ripped from the bars meant to keep it safe.
Hair grows back, mends itself.
Grows anew from the root,
All previous damage gone,
As if it had never changed at all.