Artwork & Poetry

Capture the Spirit of the Snow Leopard

To celebrate the launch of the Conservancy’s new website in July 2019, we held an Artwork & Poetry Contest. The entries submitted are remarkably creative and expressive and represent a wide variety of artistic mediums and writing styles. Those selected for honorable mention appear below and on our social media platforms. Our hope is that they will be instrumental in helping us to create awareness of the snow leopard and foster an understanding not only of its importance to the high mountain ecosystem but also its value to local communities as both a cultural and spiritual icon. Deciding which of these entries most closely embody the theme of the contest was a daunting task given the amazing talent of the participants. Ultimately, those chosen as the winners were the ones we felt best captured the beauty, strength, and mystery that is, indeed, the sprit of the snow leopard.

HONORABLE MENTIONS

I Live Here

Artist – Ekaterina Drozhdina

Medium: Pencil

Age Group: 26 & over

Artist – Karina Pliego

Medium: Black pen on opaline paper

Age Group: 26 & over

The night sky’s image
blazoned in reverse—
black stars against golden-white,
dark Milky Way flowing down the center,
terrestrial yang to celestial yin—
walking the Earth
mostly unseen
but present.
Present as a heartbeat in the stillness.
Present as a warm touch in the cold.
Present as a body enclosing the limitless.
Present as complement and completeness.

At the interface of earth and heaven
snow leopard treads,
and the world continues to be.

Poet – Carol Parks

Age Group: 26 & over

“Spirit of the Snow Leopard”

Snow falls all around
This majestic land
Of never ending peaks
Wind swept terrain
And rarefied sunshine.

Silent as the snowfall
Enters the ghost of the Himalayas
Blending into the surroundings so well
Moving gracefully with their
Lush long tail
Fur padded paws
Unique rosettes
And mesmerizing creamy jade colored eyes.

Elusive movements to the eyes
So well blended as they are in their environment
Giving off an other worldly aura
Of ethereal regalness as they pass by.

Protective mothers with their cubs
On a partially hidden rocky ledge play
allowing them to roam about in their new world
Just so far.

Male counterparts
Roam the area far and wide
In pursuit of the next meal, caught with lightening speed and agility
Or perhaps they look for a new mate to court at the top of the world.

This reverenced cycle of life observed
In so vast a land as this
With such a beautiful creature
The Spirit of the Snow Leopard.

Poet – Debra Crowe-Vitale

Age Group: 26 and over

Two Ages

Artist – Ekaterina Drozhdina

Medium: Pencil

Age Group: 26 & over

“When My Chuff Gets Real”

In the Peaks, the Cliffs,
Those mountains which are 3500 meters high,
Search for Me; I look black & white,
And a little more Shy.
In my snow-covered Palace
I am the queen
Where I flaunt my beautiful tail,
Now and then.
But Human! Why is this getting a little more warm?
I cannot even rear my cubs,
And be a confident mom.
More than 190 countries for you
And just 12 for me
You 8 billion, Just 4000 of me
Can’t you just spare the earth
A little for me?
I don’t ask for the oceans, hills, or plains,
A little would be enough of the mountains,
Just a little snow-covered lanes
You can travel to the moon and mars,
You have the oceans where you play with Sharks,
Oh human! Don’t cry when I am all gone.
Remember this is the only place which is my home.

Poet – Suraj Upadhaya

Age Group: 26 and over

Between Paws

Artist – Fiona Anderson

Medium: Pastel on artist’s velour

Age Group: 26 and over

On a Mission

Artist – Fiona Anderson

Medium: Pastel on suede board

Age Group: 26 and over

“The Snow and The Fury”
a haiku

Bounding gracefully,

Cold power through the white deep,

Steel blue eyes see all.

Poet – David Trachtenberg

Age Group: 26 and over

“Between Worlds”

Snow leopards stare out from my newsfeed
pewter-eyed and stilled, imagined, that mystery their weakness.

Two cubs, English-born three months ago, three miles from my home:
small ambassadors so far from the mountains.
Baby-snaps project mischievous steps, safe, hopeful, captive,
from their enclosure to the web.
Banking precious genes, their Sanctuary
courts lovers hunting with emoticons and sponsorship,
who long for a distant, wild glimpse.

Worlds away, photographs speak different language
into that ever-diminishing expanse.
Cubs born to the cliff edge and snow underfoot
follow their mother’s fluid stalk; upwind, weighty ibex clatter, sickle-horned,
cropping grasses to bare stone.
Camouflage has meaning here, sacred, painful beauty
against scarps of silver scree, light on iced whiteness and stark rock.
Silent, focused, she traverses freedom and vulnerability,
so near to homes, precious livestock, to neighbors
who love but fear, and inch by brave inch,
grow to love more.

Poet – Shakira Christodoulou

Age Group: 26 and over

Irbis

Artist – Aleksandar Žiljak

Medium: Pencil

Age Group: 26 and over

“Snow Leopard”

Dreaming
Under winter sun

Waking to rearrange
its tail, a curve of fur,

Warm breath, its
Own fire

  Enso

Of one who knows
How to disappear

In Zen Buddhism, an Ensō is a circle that is hand-drawn in one or two uninhibited brushstrokes to express a moment when the mind is free to let the body create. ” 

Poet – Susan Leibik

Age Group: 26 and over

Artist – Brenna Eikenbary

Medium: Pencil

Age Group: 18-25

Artist – Parag Chettri

Medium: Digital

Age Group: 11-17

“Snow Ghost”

She is white lightning
Gorgeous, impaler light
Footfalls, come to carry you
Upside-down by the toenail
If she has to

She is stolen breath
Moments, unstoppable
Assurance, built to push you
Over the tumbling mountain edge
And walk away with a meal

She whispers
In the moment that you feel most alone
I am there

Poet – Aaron Lindamood

Age Group: 26 and over

“The Snow Leopard”

Most holy and powerful being,
Gliding, trackless, across your rocky realm,
How many times have we looked right at you
And still not seen?

Sky leopard, ghost cat, phantom in the snow,
Wandering the wilderness
And scaling astounding vertical crags
In search of food and companions.

We strain for signs of hope
That you are still among us:
Your image on a camera, a broad paw print,
A long, curving tail draped across the roof of the world.

Poet – Becky Norman

Age Group: 26 and over

Artist – Parag Chettri

Medium: Digital

Age Group: 11-17

Artist – Megan Hillard

Medium: Digital

Age Group: 11-17

A Leopard in Disguise

Artist – Ava Langley

Medium: Digital

Age Group: 10 and under

CONTEST WINNERS!