Here are the winning poems from our New Zealand Poetry Day Writing Competition.
Thank you to everyone who entered and congratulations to our winning entries.
1st Prize - Jean by Jan Hill
she looks small and frail
r arm in plaster
but carries with her
and dignity of a modest life well-lived
it’s a brave thing to do
this memorial service
after the crash
and then the crash
crash upon crash
gathered at the Sound Shell
are those who’d love this man
he’d taken them to his heart
the Craighead Choir sings alleluia
a helicopter dips a salutation
a white dove is handed to her
she bravely holds on while it struggles
then comes the moment of release
silvered balloons rise up on thermals
if only it were that easy
2nd Prize - Cat Spring by Jan Hill
The daffodils are out and the cat’s out
stalking unsuspecting birds
who’ve been lulled by the warmth
after the frosts of winter.
She’s proudly presented her trophies
yellow feathers scattered over the carpet
a neatly severed goldfinch head on the doorstep.
Today I happen to see her sudden sprint
the pounce in the geranium bed
and I’m out quick as an alligator
forcing her jaw apart.
A surprised sparrow flies away
straight from mouth to tree.
The cat eyes me accusingly but knowingly –
there’s plenty more fish in the sea –
comes in to sniff the Whiskas on her plate,
says can’t you do better than this
stalks out into the sunshine.
Fresh feathered meat is waiting
and is much more fun.
3rd Prize - Canterbury, my home by Faye McGunnigle
Canterbury, my home
Dry, dusty smell of sun-seared grass
A broad, clean river running fast
Rosy smell of wild rosehips
Aussie scent of eucalypts.
Crickets chirrup in a black beech tree
Slow, lazy buzz from the honey bee
Daggy sheep, a whiff of horse
Heady golden-perfumed gorse.
Four seasons that all come together
Snow and rain, brass monkey weather
Lizards flash through yellow broom
Westward, snow-capped mountains loom.
A hint of woodsmoke drifting high
Into a blue and cloudless sky
Wheat and barley, oats and maize
Haymaking that goes on for days.
Long coastline lashed by restless seas,
Sand and driftwood, wind-bent trees
Fresh briny tingle in the air
Seaweedy drifts of mermaid’s hair.
1st Prize - Tattered and torn by Luc Michelle
Tattered and torn
Winter’s grasp takes ahold
chilling me down to my Soul
I’ve called your name a thousand times
but did you ever once call mine
I never hoped to call you my own
my heart feels like a broken bone
but it sinks just like a stone
Pushed & pulled by forces unseen
good & bad, what does this mean?
the silence echoes like a drum
this pain is one that cant be undone
So, here I am, once again,
waiting for this life to end
I’ll help my heart be reborn
flying on wings,
tattered & torn.