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About Cyndi MacMillan
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Cyndi MacMillan is a well-rounded writer who embraces many genres and forms. Her work has been published in local newspapers and has won contests. She enjoys reading literary journals, and she is actively pursuing publication within their glossy covers.

Verse is both magnetic and kinetic. She attempts - madly- to give equal attention to her poetry, short stories, and a novel-in-progress, the Trim of Wicks.  Regardless of genre, she focuses on language. One word has the power to repel or pull. She never forgets the reader and does her best to make their ride interesting.

Poetry soup is a good forum which enables people from around the world to share poetry. It has some great resources and provides a nice space for friends to meet.

Cyndi lives in a small town in Ontario with her husband, young daughter and far too many books.

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MY NEW CONTEST: Z is for ZARIA: AN ABC Couplet


Blog Posted:2/26/2013 11:31:00 PM

My girl is turning four this spring, she is  currently working on her alphabet and has learned more than half of it already.  She inspired this contest.


THERE  WILL BE A PRIZE

FOR  THE

FIRST  PLACE WINNER.


I’d  like you to write 14 couplets, 28 lines, no more and no less, and create a  unique didactic poem that teaches not only the alphabet, but also delves into  another subject (see example below)

This alphabet poem must not use the old standards of A  is for Apple and B is for Butterfly. Think… A is for Andromeda, B is for  Belatrix (stars and constellations.)

Huh,  you say? Whatcha talking about, lady?

Your  mission is to take a subject and create an Alphabet “book” on ONE THEME. YOU  MUST KEEP THE THEME THROUGHOUT YOUR POEM.

Truthfully,  I was cocky when I came up with this challenge. I thought, easy peasy. Guess  what? It took me about 6 hours to write mine! Trust me coming up with something  that makes sense for the subject and does not sound like forced rhyme is work  people. Prepare to sweat, at least a bit!

So  here’s an example…

A is for  Allspice, one pinch will perk up a dull coffee cake,
B is for Bay leaf,  smart cooks know it’s a kitchen help mate. 

C is for Cinnamon, a perfect  partner for ripened apples,
D is for Dillweed, tell me, Dear, do you pucker for pickles?

E  is for Epazote, so zesty in quesadillas,
F is for Fennel seed, a healing herb as old as Judea.

G is for Ginger, lets make  a sweet house from gingerbread,
H is for Herbes de Provence. “C’est bon!” Grandmere often said. 


I is for Italian Seasoning, spaghetti sauce made for you,
J is for Jamaican Jerk, rub on meat and then barbeque.

K is for Kala Zeera which has a rich, nutty flavor,
L is  for Lemon Grass, steep for a tisane to savor.

M is for Marjoram, superb in a potato casserole,
N is for Nutmeg, add to warm cider, season your soul.

O is for oregano, this spice, dried or fresh, is so  ersatile,
P is for Piri Piri, a taste loved by the people of Portugal  .

Q is for Quassia, brew just a bit to aid digestion
R is for  Rosemary, pork and lamb’s ideal companion.

S is for Saffron, not only luscious, this spice is also luxurious,
T is for Thyme, use in stews and turn a bland meal delicious. 

U is for Uzazi, a rare pepper grown in Eastern Africa
V is for Vanilla, this fragrant gift is from Mesoamerica.

W is for Wasabi, eat in moderation or you’ll need to recoup,
X is  for X Striata, cooks in Nigeria grind this into pepper soups.

Y is for Yellow mustard seed, keep the faith and remember to pray,
Z is for Zaa’tar,  sprinkle on hummus then dream of lands far away

Rethink meals, replace  old spices, refill those tired coffers,
then enhance every dish with the  gems the world offers.




You  can play with syllable count, use any kind of near or slant rhyme that you wish.  Your X and Z words can be a stretch, but do not use EX for X…

Stuck for a  theme? Here’s JUST a few ideas...


BIRDS
SEA CREATURES
INSECTS
FLORA AND  FAUNA
FAMOUS POETS and WRITERS
FAMOUS WORKS OF  ART
PHILOSOPHY/PHILOSOPHERS
BOOKS OF FAITH/FAITH FIGURES
FAMOUS  HISTORICAL SIGHTS
CITIES OF THE WORLD
ANY OF THE SCIENCES (Geology,  astrology, medicine, herbology, math, biology etc)
FASHION AND  CLOTHING
COMPUTER TERMINOLOGY


If  you’re still stumped, consider what interests you… literature, music, sports?  All good, too!

So …. Rules this time

1)Write a 14 couplet poem – 28 lines total – about the alphabet using one  theme.
2)
No old  standards, no C is for Cat.
3)EACH LINE  MUST GIVE A BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE WORD YOU HAVE CHOSEN FOR THAT LETTER … i.e….K is for Kala Zeera which  has a rich, nutty flavor)
4)The last  two couplets should underscore your poem’s theme.
5)You  may include a brief footnote about yourself (see below)

Please,  read my winner's blog once this contest is judged, where I will highlight what I  enjoyed about your poem.


There will  be a gift exchange, so to speak….


The  first place winner will receive the children’s alphabet book

M  is for MAPLE

A  CANADIAN ALPHABET BOOK

BY  MIKE ULMER



This is a great gift for kids and older kids, and hey,  even we who pretend to be adults. You can keep or give it to your children,  grandchildren, neighbour’s children, your public library or your local literacy  agency.


The gift YOU will  give? I will be printing off copies of these poems for my daughter and having  them coil bound, solely for the enjoyment of my family. I hope to give this to  her years in the future… tell her about Soup and its wonderful poets (hence, why  I am asking for a small bio, if you'd like to give one.)

So, game on, people. Show me your  magic!

xoxo
Cyndi


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  1. Date: 2/28/2013 6:14:00 AM
    Cyndi, you are fertile soil for this old brain, I will give it a try, give your little angel a big kiss for me, and to mama angel, have a blessed day, your scented Rose, xxx

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  1. Date: 2/27/2013 2:38:00 PM
    sounds interesting, cyndi. I have done a few very similar to this style in the past!!

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  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:46:00 AM
    Thanks again, Ruben.For those in checking the readability of their poem, go to for how to do it with word. http://www.wa.gov/esd/training/quickguides/readability.htm Mine was only grade 2.8! LOL! Though I don't know many 7-8 year olds in my neighbourhood who'd know the word 'Judea.'

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  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:32:00 AM
    wonderful example poem, this will be a tough contest for those brave enough to try

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  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:09:00 AM
    Love it! It's a real challenge, Cyndi. One question: you said didactic, do we have to write a poem for children? ...using words they can understand?

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    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 2/27/2013 9:36:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    :) GREAT question. I was going to add notes about this to the contest, then didn't. Okay, I'm thinking the language should MOSTLY be for, say around a grade 4-5 level,but a few challenging words, too, a chance to open up conversation and increase vocabulary... I think there used to be a program for that. Tells you what grade level you're writing is at?
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 9:06:00 AM
    This sounds like an interesting challenge. I think I'll give it a go.

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  1. Date: 2/27/2013 7:08:00 AM
    What a loving and "Entertaining" mind you have---sounds like fun!

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    cornish Avatar craig cornish Date: 2/27/2013 9:41:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Oops I've already done one on another subject and you're right--took a while---btw z isn't hard with zephyr and Xebec a Med, Sea boat---anyhow, already did one on another love--cooking. Thanks for the idea tho !
    MacMillan Avatar Cyndi MacMillan Date: 2/27/2013 8:25:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    My girl is using her tools to fix her Barbie car, so I have a moment, LOL... future mechanic? Okay, I have one for you :) A is for Aboard, B is for Berth, Nautical terms! You'd have to go through the dictionary and brainstorm for X and Z... but then you'd end up with a nice one for your grandkids, too. You could add pictures for them gotta go
  1. Date: 2/27/2013 6:51:00 AM
    Wow, very cool idea! It sounds a bit intimidating, but I will give it a try. Yours is awesome :)

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  1. Date: 2/27/2013 5:44:00 AM
    Sounds interesting. And daring. .. have fun..pd

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  1. Date: 2/27/2013 1:07:00 AM
    Cyndi will give it some thought...great idea...David

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  1. Date: 2/26/2013 11:49:00 PM
    This a nice idea, Cyndi. A fine ABECEDARIAN poetry contest. "A is for apple" is the easy form, but I think that I have licked it with My A - Z Affairs..... I do not think I have another one inside of me. Good luck with the contest and hope to read the entries when time allows. Love, Su

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    Richards Avatar Suzette Richards Date: 2/26/2013 11:52:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    ABC poetry form is derived from Abecedarian, but distinctly different, and another form is the Name poetry form....
  1. Date: 2/26/2013 11:42:00 PM
    Sounds a great idea, not an easy one, but a great one. If your ears burn it will be my mumberlings under my breath, lol....Seren

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My Past Blog Posts

 
MEMORIAL TRIBUTE ON THE CONTEST PAGE: A WORD COLLAGE FOR CHAN. PLEASE, Take up the challenge. <3
Date Posted: 11/10/2014 9:30:00 AM
A LOVE-IN & WAKE FOR CHAN. ALL SOUPERS WELCOME. PLEASE ADD SOMETHING.
Date Posted: 11/9/2014 10:03:00 AM
WORDS THAT HAVE MADE POETRY'S MOST NOT WANTED LIST
Date Posted: 11/7/2014 7:57:00 PM
Terrorist attack at Parliament. Ottawa, our national capital, is on lockdown.
Date Posted: 10/22/2014 11:59:00 AM
PUBLICATION ETIQUETTE, TWO IMPORTANT THINGS
Date Posted: 10/16/2014 5:28:00 AM
****EDIT******POETRY AS LITERATURE AND AS SELF-EXPRESSION. YOU DON'T NEED TO CHOOSE.
Date Posted: 10/6/2014 11:58:00 AM
ANOTHER WOWSER. TRULY BEAUTIFUL. COME IN FOR A CHAT.
Date Posted: 10/2/2014 9:39:00 PM
A ROMANTIC POEM I THINK MOST WILL LOVE, COMMON GROUND, COME TAKE A PEEK
Date Posted: 9/30/2014 5:37:00 PM
How I judge Contests by Cyndi MacMillan
Date Posted: 9/10/2014 9:58:00 PM
A RESPONSE FROM MAUREEN HYNES
Date Posted: 9/8/2014 8:54:00 PM
MAUREEN SAYS SHE LOVES MY RESPONSE
Date Posted: 9/8/2014 10:25:00 AM
READING POEMS LIKE A POET, INCLUDES AN ANALYSIS
Date Posted: 9/6/2014 6:23:00 PM
PUNK TUATION IN POETRY
Date Posted: 9/4/2014 9:39:00 PM
Grammar and poetry: a Fiction Writer’s Oddball View
Date Posted: 9/2/2014 10:52:00 AM
GREAT ARTICLE ON FIGURATIVE WRITING
Date Posted: 8/22/2014 10:47:00 AM
THIS IS POETIC PROSE
Date Posted: 8/20/2014 9:28:00 AM
GARDEN PARTY CONTEST WINNERS
Date Posted: 7/15/2014 9:57:00 PM
NEW CONTEST
Date Posted: 7/13/2014 5:19:00 AM
LEATHERBACK BOY
Date Posted: 7/11/2014 9:53:00 PM
MINDING MANNERS
Date Posted: 6/11/2014 6:17:00 PM
TORRENT: A CONTEMPORARY SONNET
Date Posted: 6/7/2014 6:56:00 AM
NEW CONTEST
Date Posted: 6/4/2014 10:19:00 PM
GENITALS in PRINT, AN OPEN DIALOGUE
Date Posted: 5/27/2014 3:20:00 PM
THE CLEARING, WORD PAIRINGS, COLLABORATIVE WORK
Date Posted: 5/8/2014 10:21:00 PM
WORD PAIRINGS. BUILDING POEMS.
Date Posted: 5/6/2014 9:04:00 AM

My Recent Poems

Date PostedPoemTitleFormCategories
11/19/2014 just testing I do not know?absence,
11/10/2014 CHAN Free versefriend,goodbye,
10/15/2014 DARK ANGELS OF HIGHGATE Sestinafuneral,psychological,sad
9/4/2014 I COMES Free versesexy,
9/2/2014 cummings and i Versepoetry,word play,
8/25/2014 LIFE WILL BE A HONEYMOON Lyricparadise,passion,romantic
8/25/2014 HOSTEL, QUEBEC CITY, 1978 Free versehistory,places,
8/21/2014 DEGREES Sonnetbooks,sensual,words,
7/17/2014 CRADLED Trioletbaby,love,
6/7/2014 TORRENT Sonnetcelebration,life,women,
4/21/2014 LA MARQUISE Free versepsychological,
4/8/2014 ROOTS Free versemoving on,power,teenage,
4/4/2014 GINGHAM AND LACE, A BLITZ POEM Versedaughter,love,
4/4/2014 NUDE, THIRTY DOLLARS, A BLITZ Verseart,imagination,lost love
3/24/2014 50 GODS Free versegod,peace,philosophy,
3/15/2014 WINTER IN PORTLAND Free versedepression,winter,
2/25/2014 PITY THE PIRANHA Free verseintrospection,people,
2/13/2014 DOUBLE OH Crown of Sonnetsfilm,sexy,
2/10/2014 TARTANS Sonnetfriend,patriotic,places,p
2/9/2014 TESTIMONIALS Sonnetfaith,friend,nature,
2/5/2014 ON THE FRINGE Sonnetafrica,allegory,culture,f
2/3/2014 SUMMERLAND Sonnetfriend,music,places,poetr
2/2/2014 WORD ON THE STREET, 2009 Sonnetbooks,friend,places,poetr
1/31/2014 HEROES Sonnetfriend,hero,places,poetry
1/29/2014 DIVINE STEEPLES Sonnetfriend,love,places,poetry
1/28/2014 SNIPPETS Sonnetfilm,friend,poetry,
1/27/2014 NEW-DALI Sonnetart,friend,poetry,time,
1/26/2014 MUSE Sonnetfriend,love,places,poetry
1/24/2014 ONE TWO ONE Sonnetfriend,love,places,poetry
1/23/2014 FIREWORKS Sonnetfriend,heaven,life,metaph
1/22/2014 UNREHEARSED Sonnetart,friend,love,
1/21/2014 THE WIT OF ROSE Sonnetfantasy,friend,places,
1/20/2014 CHANTRY Sonnetlight,memory,places,
1/20/2014 SUNCATCHER Sonnet 
1/17/2014 HAT MAN Sonnetfriendship,poetry,
1/14/2014 FANFARE Sonnetbooks,friend,imagination,
1/14/2014 MY HEART BELONGS TO MONTREAL Iambic Pentameterheart,places,
1/13/2014 AN EDUCATED MAN Free verseeducation,life,truth,wisd
1/9/2014 SPICY Sonnetfood,passion,
1/6/2014 THE STAND Prosetruth,
1/4/2014 WOMAN, I BE I do not know?life,
12/19/2013 EXPLORING THE BASEMENT Free verseabuse,childhood,courage,
12/12/2013 LET ME INFLAME: A POET'S PRAYER Versepassion,poetry,
12/11/2013 PARDON ME, DID YOU JUST BAN CHRIS AECHTNER FROM SOUP Prosefeelings,freedom,friend,
12/10/2013 UNHOLY Versewinter,
12/3/2013 LA VIE EN ROSE Light Poetrycharacter,imagination,
12/2/2013 OPENING A POET'S VEIN, WORDS, Versewriting,
11/29/2013 RIPPLES Free versesad,writing,
9/28/2013 EMILY DICKINSON Sonnetpoetess,
9/27/2013 HEY WAITER, THERE'S A HITLER IN MY SOUP Free verseparody,poetry,
9/26/2013 THE VIRGIN AND CHILD Sonnetfaith,jesus,mother,
9/12/2013 LAST WISHES Free versedeath,niece,sad,
9/10/2013 SAFEWORD Sonnetlove,lust,
8/23/2013 UNMASKED Pantoumdance,desire,fantasy,
8/6/2013 THE OTHER-WISE Free verseart,introspection,
7/24/2013 PIMPED Free versechildren,lust,society,
7/17/2013 MARGINS Free versedaughter,summer,
7/15/2013 SPINNING WHEEL Free versechange,home,moving on,
6/5/2013 COME, ARION Sonnetfantasy,horse,mythology,
6/5/2013 BAIT, 1986 Free versegrowing up,lust,men,
6/3/2013 COME AND PLAY ME Lyricmuse,music,passion,romant
5/31/2013 haiku 6 Haikuchildren,summer,
5/28/2013 HER FIRST PLACE Sonnetart,imagination,
5/28/2013 BLAMELESS Personificationrain,
5/27/2013 THE SHINING Sestinaevil,film,horror,
5/22/2013 ALL FALL DOWN Sestinadeath,history,london,
5/18/2013 POETRY Free versepoetry,
5/13/2013 MADE IN BANGLADESH Ghazalchange,clothes,death,
5/5/2013 SUNDAY SOJOURN Haibungarden,morning,time,
4/28/2013 WOMEN Free versefriendship,gender,
4/26/2013 SYLVIA Crown of Sonnetslife,poets,writing,
4/20/2013 THE POET'S CREED Free versepoetry,world,writing,
4/18/2013 TYPEWRITER Free verselust,writing,
4/17/2013 IT Free versepoetry,writing,
4/10/2013 TWELVE DOLLARS, UNLESS PRICED DIFFERENTLY Free versenostalgia,women,
4/8/2013 THE ADJECTIVE IMPERATIVE Coupleton writing and words,word
4/1/2013 MY JANE Sonnetromantic,
3/21/2013 PALADIN Free versepeople,sympathy,
3/18/2013 SWEET SOLITUDE Haibunfaith,imagination,sister,
3/14/2013 WHAT LURKS WITHIN Free versechild,death,dedication,lo
3/12/2013 ALLUSIVE PEARL Free verseart,imagination,
3/11/2013 ELIZABETH'S DIARY Prose Poetryimagination,love,
3/6/2013 HIS-STORY Free verseimagination,night,night,
3/5/2013 THE LANGUAGE OF ASH Free versemystery,social,suicide,ch
2/22/2013 haiku 3 Haikufunny,seasons,
2/17/2013 BIDALSANA Free versepassion,me,me,
2/12/2013 GURO, MAHAL KITA Sonnetfriendship,on writing and
2/7/2013 haiku 2 Haikubaby,
2/7/2013 haiku 1 Haikuchild,seasons,metaphor,
2/6/2013 WILD ROSE Sonnetart,passion,
2/3/2013 ALCHEMY Versefood,seasons,time,februar
1/31/2013 SMAAK STUKKEND Carpe Diemimagination,introspection
1/12/2013 CAT O NINES Rhymepassion,
1/8/2013 HIGHWAY OF TEARS Rhymemystery,women,women,
12/20/2012 THIS BLEAK HEREAFTER Terzanellechild,death,grief,night,m
12/10/2012 A PRETTY DRESS Rondeaupassion,romantic,women,lo
12/6/2012 CASTING HIS LINE Rondeaudad,nostalgia,sports,
11/20/2012 HOMER'S HUES Free verseart,introspection,
11/14/2012 happy haiku 2 Haikudaughter,introspection,li
11/5/2012 THE SONG OF DEBORAH Sonnetdevotion,friendship,

My Photos


Fav Poems

PoemTitleFormCategories
The Sowing Free versedevotion,
Ten Little Toes Rhymedaughter,lifeold,old,,gra
Woodland Rhapsody Quatraininspirational
Contradicting Keats Sonnetintrospection,life
Surrender to Love Rhymeloveme,
A Totum Pole Ode Concretenative american,people,
MORE DREAMS TO ROW Rhyme royalinspirational,life,
When the Tab Comes Due Free verseinspirational,introspecti
Lighting My Candle From Within Quintain (English)caregiving,introspection,
The Kirk by the Sea Coupletnostalgia,religion,love,
Moonlight On The Ward Chokahealth,life,
Nocturnal Poetry Rhymeimagination,life,poetry,
Slumber Epicdedication,epic,slam,
FROSTY NIGHT STROLL Coupletinspirational,seasons,
Our Thanksgiving Light Poetryholiday,
Tomorrow's Grace Ethereepeace,
A New Star Shines Above Hawaii Rhymededication,music,
Jesus, Our Savior Shapereligion,life,
Monarch of Summer Haibunanimals,devotion,inspirat
Untouched Rhymeforgiveness,me,me,
Midnight Pearls Than-Baukintrospection,love,
Beaucoup Blooms Terza Rimanature,spring,spring,
On Heaven's Doorway Narrativeinspirational,life,care,c
WALKING ON FAITH Versefaith,for children,
Beachworld Free verseplaces,sea,sun,
Sleepless Nights Narrativeangst,imagination,mystery
Another Face Rhymelost love,
What Dreams are Made Of - LGT Blank versefear,life,mystery,
Paired Parings Balladchildhood,
AUTUMN'S SPLENDOROUS BEAUTY Quatrainnature,autumn,autumn,
Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis Epicabuse,analogy,corruption,
Anticipation Free verseautumn,death,life,
friend to friend Haikupeople,philosophy,
Calligraphy Verseon writing and words,
Cyndi Sonnetdedication,
Night Comes Rhymetime,
Without Hope's Gleam Terzanellehope,flower,flower,joy,pa
When Your Dead YOUR Dead Rhymefriendship,love,wife,
after my prayer Haikuinspirational,
Chamber Music Chopped Blank versemusic,
Money-God Free versededication,hope,love,reco
Down Fall Italian Sonnetbeautiful,miracle,nature,
God Forbid Coupletangst,devotion,write,life
To Kashinath and Cyndi Rhymededication,devotion,frien
Edinburgh Free versededication,
CHERISHED Sonnetlove,peace,
Shield Walls Lyricimagination,love,
Live The Cliches Free versedream,hope,love,poetry,
Bliss State Quatrainfaith,
A Reminder: To Be Free versetruth,writing,
She Came In and Changed Everything Dramatic Verse (Verse Drama)death,deep,epic,evil,sorr
IN THE MOOD Light Poetryadventure,woman,
Edinburgh Free versededication,hope,life,love
The Byway Rhymecare,
To Love Myself Sonnetlove,new year,self,
Westward Movement Free versedevotion,love,peace,
The Rocking Chair Rhymechild,christmas,sister,
To the Rescue Rhymesnow,
A Perfect Storm Rhyme royallife,
Onward Christian Soldiers Rhyme 
BEYOND TEARS Rhymechild,encouraging,hope,
Dewberry Cobbler Haibungrowing up,
Release Free verseencouraging,grief,hope,st
IN STILLNESS Free versechange,life,

Fav Poets

PoetCountry 
Debbie Guzzi United States Flag United States Read
Caryl Muzzey United States Flag United States Read
Andrea Dietrich United States Flag United States Read
Joe Flach United States Flag United States Read
nette onclaud Philippines Flag Philippines Read
Drake Eszes United States Flag United States Read
Mystic Rose Canada Flag Canada Read
mourning mist France Flag France Read
elizabeth wesley Canada Flag Canada Read
Rhonda Johnson-Saunders United States Flag United States Read
Ruben O. Argentina Flag Argentina Read
Carrie Richards United States Flag United States Read
kathryn collins United States Flag United States Read
Catie Lindsey United States Flag United States Read
craig cornish United States Flag United States Read
David Williams United Kingdom Flag United Kingdom Read
Charmaine Chircop Malta Flag Malta Read
Francine Roberts Canada Flag Canada Read
Eileen Manassian _Not Listed Flag _Not Listed Read
Poet Destroyer A United States Flag United States Read
Faye Gibson United States Flag United States Read