2018 Details and Results

 

  • Entrants are invited to submit original  poems of the named author and must not have been previously published or won a prize in any competition.
  • Class 1.          Any Subject.
  • Class 2.          Countryside
  • Class 3.          Memories (following a bereavement)
  • Maximum 4 poems
  • Entry Fee £5  per poem
  • Donated cash prizes for each Class

Click  link to download entry form and details of format, entry fees etc:-

PDF link:-  2018. Cruse Lines Poetry Competition Details entry form

Doc File Link:- 2018. Cruse Lines Poetry Competition Details entry form

 

2018 CRUSE LINES POETRY COMPETITION RESULTS

Class 1 …… Any Subject:
1st      It all Falls Down                                                                     Lizzy Huitson
2nd    I learned to drive in a metallic blue Ford Capri                 Sarah Wimbush
3rd    Against the Stream                                                                 Philip Burton
Highly Commended      Gift from my Son                                    Isobel Thrilling

Class 2:…. Countryside
1st      Driving to Suffolk in August                                                Veronica Zundel
2nd    Apple-Trees                                                                              Isobel Thrilling
3rd    Himalayan Poppy                                                                    A. F. Paterson

Class 3….. Memories
1st      John’s head                                                                             Charlotte Eatwell
2nd    My father, dying                                                                    Veronica Zundel
3rd     Remembrance                                                                        John Scrivens
Highly Commended     Plagues                                                      Veronica Zundel

Most Humorous Poem………….
Coping Alone                                                                                      Morven Main

Highest placed Poem by writer under 18 years old………
Season’s poem                                                                                    Isaac Daniel

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POEMS WITH COMMENTS BY SENIOR JUDGE

CLASS 1………… ANY SUBJECT

1st Prize awarded to Lizzy Huitson             It all Falls Down
Wonderful. The monochrome of the winter of the soul. Powerful Images. Very moving. Accomplished. Well done!

It All Falls Down
When I started losing my hair, I realised
after sixty-three lipstickless years
that I’m a vain woman.
I didn’t want the dark, difficult stuff
falling out useless, clogging drains
and littering carpets like tinsel strands at year’s end
So I took care where I left it.
Draped over the shoulders of sharp-suited men
to give than grief from their wives.
Shook my head over an old lover’s bed
to rain my shadow onto the sheets.
Left a strand on a white-iced wedding cake
so the flower girl said ‘’There’s a crack in it’’.
You can lose things well, so I’m told..
Discretely. Elegantly. With the good humour,
not a bitter crackle, showing teeth.

I’m too sick for trouble today, so
I walk the forest instead.
I weave what’s left between birch twigs.
Looks like cobwebs.
Could catch raindrops.
I’ll be a bit of Earth soon but maybe
what’s left Behind will trap the dappled sunlight
and shine.

2nd prize awarded to Sarah Wimbush        I learned to drive in a metallic blue Ford Capri
Excellent. Good rhythm, lovely colour and pictures. About more than learning to drive. Terrific poem

I learn to drive in a metallic blue Ford Capri
I learned to drive in a metallic blue Ford Capri
Mk 1, 1973 J reg, high mileage, black leather upholstery.
I learned to drive in a metallic blue Ford Capri:
gloves in the compartment, dog on the parcel shelf,
five gears, two doors, four seats; ruptured exhaust gaskets
so them in the back suffered headaches
and breathing difficulties. I learned to drive
in a metallic blue Ford Capri , a bit like Bodie and Doyle
or Starsky and Hutch even: rectangular head-lamps,
suitcase boot, twenty to the gallon, vinyl roof, bucket seats.
I learned to drive in a metallic blue Ford Capri

and dad said, if you can park that lass, you can park
anything. And I can. I learned to drive at sixteen
on a derelict runway: revs that screamed,
nine point turns, kangaroo hops, Dad’s knuckles tighter
than wheel nuts as he yelled ya can go faster
if you like love, And I did. Once, in poor judgement
and fading light I took out a lamppost
so we fixed her, together: wet and dry, The Express,
masking tape, body filler (‘mud’ to him and me)
then a grey base paint washed in metallic blue waves.
Dad even let me spray. A bit. I used to drive

a metallic blue Ford Capri, then her big end fell off,
a rattle appeared, rust nibbled her carcass
and Dad said it was her time to go. Now, I’m no petrolhead
but if Wheeler Dealers brought her back from the dead
and I’d a few grand spare, I’d be there like a shot:
that yank of the choke, long deep throw of the gear stick,
the heave of the windows and non-powered steering,
the blow of the exhaust and click of the mileage,
the stink of the ashtrays and fish and chips Fridays,
I’d pedal the metal down the back route to Maltby
elbow on the window, Born to Run on the cassette,
going faster, going farther, going for ever, nothing better-
‘cause it’s just not the same in a shit Ford Fiesta .

 

3rd prize awarded to Philip Burton                 Against the Stream
I had to read this many times which is no bad thing. It is an accomplished piece of writing, full of images.

AGAINST THE STREAM
When the sun gets up, my street
is in my pocket. I lord it over cars
I wave regally to flowers and don’t guess
that they bow to the slightest breeze.

I shrink at school. You must grow!
screams Mrs. Head. I will then –
only shorter. Three sums. Begin!
Where do subtracted bits go?

I play board rubber on my way home –
lose the day’s facts in one fell swish.
I’m a grub fallen from lettuce
to kitchen sink. I swim to my room.

Round the bend, the sharp day
sees the bedroom light click off.
I hug the pane of the window
until my eyes become the glass.

The moon harvests the clouds,
scoops each glint from the field.
A branch? No, a fish in a beak
trying to find the current of the stream.

Perhaps it will, when it’s older.
I will purse my body, pillow my talk
and dive dive dive till the dawn
again broadens my shoulders.

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

CLASS 2………. COUNTRYSIDE
1st Prize awarded to Veronica Zundel                 Driving to Suffolk in August
Full of beautiful images, lovely rhythm, clever use of English words as adjectives for colour ( Shell Guide green, Wedgewood blue) I particularly liked the small dull birds and the ending is marvellous. The thought is very well concluded. I really enjoyed this poem. Perfect!

Driving to Suffolk in August
My mother’s tongue was not my mother tongue;
I never knew that love of native earth,
its way, its wars. Alien from birth
I strode two lives, struggling to belong
to this one, dreaming rather of the rise
of Alpine mountains. Yet today, joy-filled
at these green Shell Guide curves, the way the fields
are edged and stitched; the Wedgewood blue of skies,
the backs of willow leaves silvered by the wind,
holloways, hedgerows, small dull birds in flight,
I’m deep in love with what’s beneath my feet,
the bones, the flesh, the fabric of this land-
you have made everything beautiful in its time:
flawed, backward, island-minded, this is home.

 

2nd Prize awarded to Isobel Thrilling                 Apple-Trees
An interesting poem. Evocative names, good lists, I loved the image of the big white cat, lovely ending.

APPLE – TREES
Clumps of wire, they green the minerals
in light,
raw down that ciderous sky,
rain spiced
with grasses and herbs,
nettles, wild garlic, oak, and thorn.

Apples: those little legendary tinders
of the sun,
Codling and Pippin,
Bess Pool and Newton Wonder,
Jacob’s Strawberry,
Ashmeads Kernel, Beauty of Bath,

Each Spring, a gust of petals
leaps into
my lap like a big white cat,
once I held
a partial-eclipse the cheese-grater
through the shadows of leaves;

when bereaved,
I sat under their branches,
caught their healing rays like green rain.

 

3rd prize awarded to A. F. Paterson Himalayan Poppy
Accomplished poem. Good images, colour.

Himalayan Poppy
A fuzzy green flamingo-head lifts slowly,
splits to kingfisher blue. Four petals open to gold.
The blue, lightens, becomes a sample of rare sky.

Three days it takes to look out at me
and I want to lie beneath it
and be absorbed into that pure blue.

After the all-day sun today, the petals, eight
from two blooms, fell to earth. Blue egg shapes.
I pick some up. Soft to touch, these bits of sky.

 

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Class 3 …………………MEMORIES  (Following a Bereavement)
1st Prize awarded to Charlotte Eatwell                John’s Head
Excellent poem. John jumps off the page, making one laugh and cry for him. Full of great images of him and his life and his character without labouring the point. Well done!

John’s head

Not long back from the war
his life starting up again
my Dad once tagged along with a friend
who was treating himself to a hat
(Gentleman’s hatters and outfitters)
where an assistant, glimpsing at my father’s head
murmured to another, ‘’Have to be specially made’’.
I knew this story always and knew it tickled my Dad
like being called Tadpole by his men or
knowing the trouble his bonce caused when uniforms were issued.

By thirty his hair above the high wall of his forehead was waning
By fifty the dark peninsula left on top became an island
which was suddenly not there.
Later his grandchild would ask him:
‘’Who pulled your hair out?’’
This wide expanse open to cold, sun and rain
meant a life-long happy search for hats and caps, extra-large.
When I saw him he would often ask
‘’So, my new titfer, what do you think?’’

Much later, sentenced to a geriatric ward
bewildered, lost but sane enough to know his empty future
he more than once relived the old story
with a small proud smile:
‘’Have to be specially made’’,
and I would bend and leave a goodbye kiss
on that famous cranium.

At the last when he was all done in
and cat-like found a warm safe place to end
there was little left of my broad-chested, strong-handed Dad
the blankets shockingly flat
his face just a beak-like nose, sharp chin
but above, still that familiar dome
with ample space for a final kiss.

2nd prize awarded to Veronica Zundel              My father,dying
Fine poem. Great line breaks, skilful writing, moving. Excellent.

My father, dying
On an ordinary day you sat down the bathroom
and your life tipped on its axis. Giddy and leaning,

you couldn’t stand without falling backwards
like felled timber. Small strokes hammered

at your brain for months, dwarf miners
chipping capacities from you one by one.

Once in hospital I saw when you shifted your sheet
the member that made me, flopping out of

your pyjamas, so small, pale, powerless. I have
never told anyone this before. And later

when you were twitchy couldn’t rest, I held
your hand til sleep crept in, as you must

have held mine, night after hot night
after reading me a story in German.

At the end when your tongue stopped working,
your war-scared lungs choked with breath and age,

they asked if you wanted treatment continued
and you shook your head

and then if you wanted it stopped
and you nodded

and you being a doctor yourself,
they listened

Then like a child at bedtime
with those blue trusting eyes

you put your hand in some unknown
fatherly hand

let yourself be led
away.

3rd Prize awarded to John Scrivens                        Remembrance
Good poem. Clever rhyme scheme, lovely pictures, moving, intense.

Remembrance
I forgot to make my tea today. Don’t care,
I’ll have some beans on toast, a glass of red;
I don’t recall my usual time for bed:
I’ll maybe doze right here, my favourite chair.
I forgot to turn the telly off: its glare
Illuminates the footsteps that I tread
Through half-forgotten memories in my head;
A million joyous hours are hidden there.
I haven’t forgotten that you’ve died;
You filled – you fill – my life with diamond bliss,
Whenever curtains part to let me see.
Yet in such happy moments, I have cried:
No more the magic moment of your kiss;
No more that life of one. Of you and me.

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Most Humorous Poem awarded to Morven Main         Coping Alone
Well done. This made me smile and yet one could see the difficulties of trying to manage alone. Well put together, well observed, original, clever use of rhyme and rhythm

Coping Alone
It’s what she always used to say – I hope
that when it’s time for one of us to go
that I’m the one who’s left – you men can’t cope.

I try to stay in trim, and not to mope.
Keep looking on the bright side, don’t get low.
It’s  what she always used to say – I hope

she’s looking down and sees the toothpaste, soap
and clothes lined up for morning – this should show
now I’m the one who’s left, ’you men can’t cope’

just isn’t fair. And when old Rex would lope
beside her, me behind, keep up, you’re slow
it’s what she always used to say – I hope

I’m now more fit from puffing up the slope
towards the shops – I’ve had to since I know
that I’m the one who’s left. You men can’t cope,

especially you, you’re sometimes such a dope!
I smile as I remember long ago
it’s what she always used to say. I hope
she’s happy, where she is, to see me cope.

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Junior award (under 18)  Isaac Daniel                Season’s Poem

Beautiful images and lots of colour but poetry needs to have a rhythm to be really good. It is an excellent start.

Season’s poem
Winter
Snowflakes descending unhurriedly to the frozen ground like an astronaut defying gravity,
Translucent icicles in the winter sun
Blowing out smoke rings in the frosty air,
Hedgehogs sleeping under piles of dead leaves.

Spring
The sun has emerged from its winter hibernation,
Delicate flowers ready to blossom,
New-born lambs learning to walk,
Kaleidoscope of colours.

Summer
Graceful dragonflies hovering over algae covered ponds,
Hot, sweaty children splashing in the cool water of the paddling pool,
Busy fatigued farmers harvesting their golden crops,
A vibrant kingfisher hunting for its fresh, fishy prey.

Autumn
Sour, juicy apples ready to be picked,
Brittle leaves disintegrating by touch of hand,
Children kicking crisp friable leaves,
Naked trees shaking in the gusty wind.

 

Letters are in the post to the prize winners!

Posting prizewinners