Posted: 17 September 2012
Pupils from Monkton Combe Senior School, Bath, have won Anthologise, the national poetry anthology competition for secondary schools spearheaded by Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy.
The winning entry, entitled The Poetry of Earth is Never Dead, is on the theme of nature and the environment. The students chose a wide range of poems by poets including John Keats, John Clare, Jo Shapcott, Seamus Heaney and Benjamin Zephaniah. Poetry from as far afield as China and as ancient as Virgil's Gathering the Honey will also appear in the anthology.
First prize is publication of the anthology by leading poetry publisher, Picador, in 2013. Carol Ann Duffy will also visit Monkton Combe Senior School next spring to congratulate them in person.
Lynne Webb, librarian, and Jane Hildreth, teacher at Monkton Combe Senior School, comments:
'Nurturing the enjoyment and love of poetry is often overlooked in schools because of academic pressures. The Anthologise competition was an excellent way to encourage children to appreciate the beauty and poignancy of poetry. The children all found the project immensely enjoyable.'
The Cherwell School, Oxford was very highly commended for The Evolving Muse, which includes poems on the theme of inspiration. The school was also highly commended for COGS: The Body in Fifty Poems, a collection of poetry inspired by the human body.
Teacher, Matt Gray, says,
‘The kids have loved being involved in the competition and I was impressed by the warm response from the Poet Laureate. She really showed familiarity and engagement with the young people.'
Pakefield High, Lowestoft was commended for its entry, Pakefield's Pot of Powerful Poems, a collection of pupils' favourite poems.
Linda Spendlove from Pakefield High, adds,
‘Our students gained a great deal of knowledge about the publishing world by taking part in Anthologise. Their brief was to choose a poem they really loved and could possibly use for Slam Poetry in the autumn term. The competition inspired a summer of reading and writing poetry, with 30 students having poems accepted for publishing themselves.'
The competition is spearheaded by Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy, and administered by the Poetry Book Society. It was launched by HRH the Duchess of Cornwall in September 2011, when she invited school students aged 11-18 to create their own anthologies of poetry.
The Anthologise judges were Carol Ann Duffy; National Poet for Wales, Gillian Clarke; poet John Agard; poet Grace Nichols; and Cambridge Professor of Children's Poetry, Morag Styles.
Carol Ann Duffy, commenting on the winning entry, says,
‘The Poetry of Earth is Never Dead is as assured and accomplished as any anthology currently on the bookshelves.'
On the shortlist, she adds,
‘We were hugely impressed by the flair and depth of reading evident in the shortlisted entries.'
More information about the competition can be found at: www.anthologise.co.uk
Categories: Poetry Prizes