Flash 405, June 2019: “Legacy” Winners

We are pleased to announce the latest winners of our Flash 405 contest! Our June contest was judged by Expo Associate Editor CD Eskilson, who drew on the 50th anniversary of the historic Stonewall Uprising for inspiration for the theme “Legacy.”

The winning pieces took this inspiration and created works that “serve as a map through generations” as well as reveal “the ground we stand on”—and ones we won’t soon forget. Read on to discover the winners for yourself!

Judge’s Comments: 

“Legacy” is such a broad term, and invokes something so personal to whoever hears it. At first, I wondered if I’d goofed picking the theme for my first time judging a competition: was it too subjective? Throughout June, as submissions stacked up, I was eager to see how people responded to the prompt. Come July, when reading through the work, I was certainly not disappointed. Its subjectivity proved to be a strength. I was amazed to see the breadth of forms and themes in the work I read. From reflections on family to place, on fleeting friendships and pop culture, the submissions took their work to powerful and moving places. It was humbling to have such personal and evocative work shared with me, and I’m grateful to everyone who submitted. It cannot be overstated how much great work we received, and how hard it was to choose between the pieces.

What strikes me looking back at the winners and honorable mentions here is how different they all are. In tone, in style, in language, in what even constitutes a “legacy.” At the same time, there’s a unified feeling that surrounds all of these pieces—a gnawing, I would say. A real need to unravel the origins of one’s place in the world in order to make sense of the present moment. That’s what swept me away in these five pieces, and what I hope you find in them as well. Happy reading and reflection.

– CD Eskilson

Congratulations to the winners! You can read their work (with individual comments from CD) below:

1st Place:

The Ride Is the Line itself by Brook McClurg (Nonfiction)

2nd Place:

Morbid Curiosity by Summer Awad (Poetry)

Honorable Mention:

Remember Sylvia by Becky Lee (Poetry)
Smitty’s Mom by Stephen Toskar (Fiction)

Want to see your work published in Flash 405? You can submit to our next contest, “Underneath the Words,” judged by guest judge Nancy Au! Entries will be accepted through Sept 5, 2019; you can read more and enter here.

You can also follow the Expo blog for more submission opportunities, local events, reading recommendations, and more.