This year marked the first LAFFCON Bagarthach Verse Contest.
We received 30 entries in three months, many of which we found witty, glib, or downright nasty. We’d expect no less from poetry inspired by the Dulanty family from R. A. Lafferty's novel The Reefs of Earth.
Eventually, our judges selected three winners to be published in the LAFFCON4 program booklet, to be handed out free to attendees on the day of the event and later made available for purchase via print-on-demand for those who could not be present this year.
The elements of the Bagarthach verse are: 1) funny or clever but mean spirited, 2) short, one quatrain, 3) syllabic 8-9-8-9 per line (sometimes all lines are 8 syllables), and 4) rhymed a-b-a-b. Note: It’s been argued that a fifth element exists, that of predicting/wishing bodily harm or death, but for the contest rules we just couldn’t bring ourselves to include it as a requirement.
Congratulations to our talented winners!
- Bob Newman
- John Slaby
- R. K. Wolford