Fairplay poet Laurie Buyer receives national recognition

Brief by Central Staff

Local Literature – December 1998 – Colorado Central Magazine

Fairplay poet Laurie Wagner Buyer receives national recognition

Laurie Wagner Buyer of Fairplay, whose prose has graced our pages on several occasions, is also a poet — and one of the best in the United States as determined by Writer’s Digest magazine.

Her poem, “Until I Run Out of Thread,” took first place in the Non-Rhyming Poem category of the 1998 Writer’s Digest competition.

The competition judge, Philip Paradis, wrote that he “preferred poems that leave a strong impression. Reminiscent of 17th century metaphysical love poems, `Until I Run Out of Thread’ impressed me with its wit, unflinching expressions of thought and emotion, and thoroughly developed and controlled conceit.”

Let us note here that the above “conceit” does not refer to Laurie’s personality — that’s about the last word we’d use to describe her — but is instead a literary term.

The relevant reference at hand (A Dictionary of Literary Terms by J.A. Caddon) devotes nearly six pages to a definition of this conceit, but in short, a poetic conceit is “a fairly elaborate figurative device of a fanciful kind which often incorporates metaphor, simile, hyperbole, or oxymoron, and which is intended to surprise and delight by its wit and ingenuity. The pleasure we get from many conceits is intellectual rather than sensuous.”

To continue with the judge’s comments, “Buyer’s poetic exploration of a mature marriage, in which one lover has outgrown the other, expresses complex feelings and thoughts in terse, metaphorical and resonating modern diction.”

To which we add our compliments, congratulations, and gratitude that Laurie Wagner Buyer, like many other talented writers, contributes to our little magazine. Without them, there wouldn’t be a Colorado Central.