Winning poetry by Yorkshire pupils impresses Carol Ann Duffy

NiddFest children's poetry competition winner Katherine Quinlan, aged ten, with Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, second from right. (Picture by Mike de Horsey)

NiddFest children's poetry competition winner Katherine Quinlan, aged ten, with Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, second from right. (Picture by Mike de Horsey)

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By Graham Chalmers

The first-ever NiddFest in Pateley Bridge and surrounding villages, which boasted Carol Ann Duffy, the Poet Laureate, as its patron, didn’t only presents top nature writers in various natural settings in the Dales.

It also included a new, Yorkshire-wide NiddFest children’s poetry prize which attracted a huge number of entries from pupils in schools.

The poems on the final shortlist were selected by members of the NiddFest team and the head judge was author Piers Torday.

Prizes were presented at NiddFest by Carol Ann Duffy.

NiddFest Poetry Prize 2015

Winners

Year 5,6

Winner - ‘My Garden’ by Katherine Quinlan (age 10) Boyle and Petyt Primary School

Runner up - ‘Lord of the Skies’, by Owen Taylor (age 11) Aspin Park Primary School

Highly commended - ‘Loneliness’, by Alice Kendall (age 10) Glasshouses Primary School

Year 3,4

Winner - ‘The Tree’ by Jessica Ebel (age 9) - Boyle and Petyt Primary School

Runner up - ‘My Fish Poem’ by Fern Leaf Hill (age 8) Glasshouses Primary School

Highly commended - ‘I am a rose’ by Charlotte Burnett-Fisher (age 9) Kirk Hammerton Primary School

Year 5,6

“My Garden” by Katherine Quinlan (Age 10) - The Boyle and Petyt Primary School

In my garden full of colours,

Green, red, yellow and blue,

I find myself wandering through.

It has pink and white lilies,

And a new poppy growing too,

I find myself wandering through.

In my garden I have birds and trees,

Covered in nests and busy bees,

I find myself wandering through.

At night in my garden,

I hear twit twoos,

I find myself wandering through.

At night I hear the strong wind,

Rustling through the trees, singing,

I am blowing through.

In my garden of red, green, yellow and blue,

Pink and white lilies and a red poppy too,

Birds, trees, nests and busy bees,

A lonely owl and singing trees.

I find myself wandering though.

Runner up - ‘Lord of the Skies’, by Owen Taylor (age 11) Aspin Park Primary School

Tensing, I launch myself,

My enormous, spread-out wings

Beat the air to become airborne;

I gain height rapidly.

Far, far above the patchwork of

Green, I level out,

My wings motionless,

My body stooped.

Beady eyes, set in a white face,

Scan the ground,

Searching for my goal,

Moving my wings as a ventriloquist moves his lips.

I majestically soar, circling,

Under a white sky that is

Like the fur of the earth-bound creatures

Which are held captive by stone hedges.

My red-brown, forked tail twisting ceaselessly,

I spot the carcass of the long-eared burrow dweller,

My white-patched wings instantly fold,

As I enter the Death-Dive.

I land with a THUD and a CRACK,

As one lethally clawed foot

Seizes the limp neck, crushing any life

That may remain in my prey.

My hooked beak tears the frail skin,

Razor-sharp claws pulverize bone.

One, two, three, now half a dozen dots appear in the sky,

My brothers and sisters, as bees vying for the honey.

My red belly satisfied, I rise to leave,

Hitching a lift on an air current in the vast realm of the sky,

Singing my song: ‘Peeeoooh, pee-ooo-eee-ooo’; I am

The king of my land: the Red Kite.

Highly commended - ‘Loneliness’, by Alice Kendall (age 10) Glasshouses Primary School

Loneliness is white, like a blank page.

It tastes like salty tears rolling down

your face

and smells of nothing. So you can’t tell

it’s coming.

Loneliness looks like an empty space.

It feels like something’s missing.

It sounds of everything and nothing

Loneliness is empty

Year 3,4

Winner - “The Tree” by Jessica Ebel (Age 9) - The Boyle and Petyt Primary School

The tree is a soldier,

Standing tall and proud,

Never leaves his post,

Never at all.

The tree is a canopy,

Standing high and strong,

Look at the emerald leaves,

Protecting from hard weather.

The tree’s bark is a chocolate bar,

So high and bumpy,

Look at the oozing filling,

Delicious, but very lumpy!

The tree’s leaves are emeralds,

Placed upon a crown,

Comes from Russia,

Where the snow pelts down.

Runner up - ‘My Fish Poem’ by Fern Leaf Hill (age 8) Glasshouses Primary School

Fish are cute,

Fish can be as small as a newt.

They do not crawl,

They swim,

With a fin.

They’re as cheerful as a dog

And can swim in a fog.

They do not cry

High in the sky,

They keep below

With the flow.

To land at the end,

Round the bend,

To sunlight,

Into the night.

Shadows luring in the water

Are actually cute little fish,

At the border.

Fish are stripy.

Fish are shy.

Fish cannot fly up in the sky.

At lands’ end,

Round the bend,

To oceans deep,

With a sneaky peek.

Every day,

We fish like to play,

Hide and seek,

Into the coral reef.

When the day is over

We fish like to dozer!

(That means go to sleep!! :D )

Highly commended - ‘I am a rose’ by Charlotte Burnett-Fisher (age 9) Kirk Hammerton Primary

I’m a pink blancmange rose,

I look like a flamingo,

My crumpled shape unfolds,

Bumble bees pollinate me,

I sit in the cool breeze,

Watching the world go by,

Insects tickle me as they climb up my body,

My friends sway in the wind,

Knocking me sideways as they move,

I hear people coming,

Walking towards me,

I hear the scissors of the florist,

They cut me and my closest friend,

We got to the florist,

And were bought within seconds,

I want to go back to my field,

My home,

The place where I belong.