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National Poetry Day 2021 ~ Poetry Competition

Poetry judges were very impressed and could say on behalf of the English department that they were also delighted with the vast number of entries to the poetry competition with pupils from all across different year groups and houses battling for the podium and the number one spot. We congratulate the number one spot (Tara Kale) for their very intricate and thought-provoking response on the theme of Choice, which discussed human judgement when it comes to preserving the earth and the distribution of our natural resources. Is it fair for others to belittle our motherland? Or for others to diminish the efforts of humanitarian activists in an attempt to save the planetary rock on which more than 7 billion people live on?

Second place was nabbed by Jessica Davis in Year 8 due to her amazing use of language and poetic techniques which reminded us of the poet Year 12 Higher English is studying, Seamus Heaney, for its motif of nature. A very impressive piece of writing especially for someone in such a young year group. The short, snappy sentences used really created a sense of urgency and hammered home the anxiety that sometimes comes with making a decision.

Coming in at third, Mya Fewell (Year 11) wrote an allegorical poem. The powerful use of a semantic field of fire really made her poem stand out. We also liked how the reader was forced to reflect on the consequences of their choices through the use of rhetorical questions. A line from the poem we particularly liked was the idea that “words could be soaked in venom, dripping down my neck and into the ground” as it created (idk what I’m trying to say here icl).

We judged the entries on their unique and interesting perspectives on Choice and what it meant to them, and how that translated into their poems. Whilst we were thoroughly impressed by the top three entries, we would also like to give a special mention to one poem which had a completely unique approach, and we thought deserved to be recognised even though it didn’t make the top three. This poem wasn’t lengthy and grandiose in size but packed a punch in as little as eight words clearly proving that a poem doesn’t have to be the size of an epic but depict, or in this instance think creatively, of the issue and topic they are willing to address. The poem read as follows: “My choice is to not write a poem”

Alexandru Ionita and Anya Scothern, Year 12