Angels and Dogs Poetry Project – Winning Poems


Back in November 2021, then #WriterOfTheMonth Matthew MC Smith shared with me his idea for this poetry project, we opened for a 48 hour window and received way in excess of one hundred submissions.

Mathhew and editor Alan Parry were tasked with selecting what they believed to be the strongest three poems which would be rewarded with a video recording of Matthew reading their work, and a page in a future Artist Collective publication.

Our first winner is Kathy Miles – with the poem Urban Fox.

Urban Fox

Skinny dog-fox, hungered to his bones, scrap-merchant

and wheeler-dealer of other people’s trash; and in this

hot reek of city, where there’s no dark, no silence,

he’s sketched on the dusk, russet traced over neon,

a drawing so delicately done that he’s almost not-there,

a trick of streetlight and rain. His bark is a stalled engine,

his scream the echo of a passing siren; his eyes gleam

headlamps of yellow. But when he keens for the forest,

how it catches in your throat; like the memory of a painting,

or the wild in us, lost somewhere out of the frame.

Our second winner is M.S. Evans – with the poem Nights on the Line.

Nights on the Line

We hitched to Wenatchee,

caught the Hi-Line.

Held our breath through


Tops of telephone poles

whipped past, backlit by

the Milky Way; so beautiful I cried.

Landed hard

outside Minneapolis.

Our third winner is Sarah Connor – with the poem Crossing the River.

Crossing the River

Suddenly, autumn shatters

into a thousand birds –

swirling and whirling

across a paper-lantern sky –

I think we need them now,

the things that

weave a dance

against the dark.

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