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Competition Results & Winning Poems

Collections From The Winning Poets

are advertised in the Poetry Cornwall Shop Page.

Poetry Cornwall/Bardhonyeth Kernow Competition Results

Competition Winners

Competition Number 1 - Jenny Galton-Fenzi

Competition Number 2 - Crispin Williams

Competition Number 3 - Jacqueline Pritchard

2003 Competition - Mick Paynter

2004 Competition - Donald R Rawe

2004 Winning Poems

Competition judged by Mick Paynter
'... the winner is Donald R Rawe for his wonderful 'Alfred Wallis', 'On The Roof' and 'In Gwendra Valley'.
These are fine examples of his excellent writing.
I look forward to seeing his Palores Publication's collection in print.'
Mick Paynter
Skogynn Pryv
St Ives, Kernow.

Alfred Wallis 1856-1942

You began, aged seventy, your life's long work,
Giving it away to those who laughed it to scorn,
Selling for a few bob to buy extras
Those towering ships on mutinous seas,
Phallic lighthouses, square-box cottages, luggers and seiners,
The Brixham boats among icebergs stewing in fog,
Brunel's Bridge arching the Tamar, and Noah's Ark-
All those things, you said, that Used To Be-
In a fever of devotion lasting sixteen years,
Recording for posterity all that you knew:
Painting despite those Voices, the doomful threats
From She whom you always obeyed, in everything but this.
No threat of Hell or damnation prevented you
Releasing the pent yearnings of half a century,
Bursting morality's dam in order to find
That which you knew you were born to create.

No relevance here for perspective, impressionist tricks
Learned at the Slade, the glorification of light. You knew
The stink of fish and smear of tar, the cuched sails
Drying stiff in the raw sunlight and east wind;
Were led by instinct, charting by dead reckoning
The mountainous surge of Salvation and faith
To gain your biblical anchorage of peace.
In Madron a prophet, teaching your disciples,
Who took off from your work and did great things;
Also remembered you, wrote of your work,
Got your pictures into the best galleries, whilst you
Sailed without fear and caring on your last brief haul,
Content to have done what Belonged to Be.

Donald R. Rawe,
Probus, Kernow.

On The Roof Of Wales

Here hermits could have dwelt - and did perhaps;
Old monks, the ancient seers of Christendom,
Those bards of God, who sang their praises on
These loudly wind-scarred peaks and sun-scoured caps.

As Antony and Paul the desert loved,
As Petroc to the wilderness was trothed
And there, the flesh subdued, approached their God,
So now we toil, by foot or railway moved
To make the ascent in hope, to the abode

Of purity and grace: this borne of light
Where thunderous visions blast and blast again
Each cwm and rock-face, blazoning such sights
As dwarf the fears and lusts of insect men.

Here Borrow wandered; Wordsworth on the soul
Of nature mused; those Britons made by rites
Obeisance to the howling sun, reached heights
Of mystic love and truth, inspired by all
That moves the climbers' feet, the poets' eyes.

Ignore the camcorders, the staring horde;
Forget the National Park and Tourist Board.
Here is our Celtic Kingdom: see the whole
Enormous prospect of it, sump to pole.

Donald R Rawe,
Probus, Kernow.

In Gwendra Valley

If you could be with me today, what would you see?-
A limpid stream in flow with silent rush
Upon the stones and sunken branches, beneath the boles
Of ash and sycamore crusted with shelf-fungus;
Dead white bark less elms, ghosts of the past;
Leaves of late November swirling by, with russet veins,
Male ferns stirring passively as wrens flit by;
A blackbird chakkers his alarm, the only raucous sound
The grey hour closes in as I stand here
Knowing how you too would love this place
At this bleak time, the nadir of the year.
When only campion splashes red or pink to bring
A hint of longer, fertile days to come.
Above, the windswept sky brings fitful rain
From sou'-sou'west. The stream glides peacefully,
Subtly glowing through the gloomy shallows, down
And sharp sand flung on force-ten gusts
Then out to join the raging tumult of the waves,
Making their everlasting war on this our land.

Donald R Rawe,
Probus, Kernow.

Donald R Rawe's collection, (the prize for winning the 2004 Poetry Cornwall/Bardhonyeth Kernow competition
will be published early 2005 by Palores Publications of Redruth, Cornwall.)

2003 Winning Poems

Competition judged by Andrew Robinson
ARJ'1st and Winner: Mick Paynter: Bay Perran is direct, simple, sparse - not a single spare word - honest. funny, moving, controlled, true. Yn Kernow dha - yes 1 have to get the sense from the translation into English, but 1 can read and hear the Cornish. feel the irony. the self-worth. the distance, the privacy. Gorhel Terrys, the Oddessy on a page of A4. Well done.'
Andrew Robinson
Truro, Kernow.

Bay Perran

      Bay Perran wiz a beship,
      bet ee niver keert tall,
      Ee niver feered not wan sawl,
ee wiz skeert 'f begger all,
'iz d'livry wad'n up ta par,
ee wiz knawed to taake a drop;
ess Perran wiz a godly man
      bet' ee dedn av naw flock,
nor skeff, nor shep, nor boat,
      nor leaf, ee saailed on a geet rock,
      an' ee bro't'n to our Country,
      when ee messt tha poort, of Hayle
      an ee brung us pre'er an oap
an tin, an charity, an ale.

Mick Paynter,
St Ives, Kernow.

Mick Paynter's collection,
'And all the World Our Patch' ISBN 0-9547985-3-8 priced @ £3.50
(his prize for winning the 2004 Poetry Cornwall/Bardhonyeth Kernow competition)
is currently available from Palores Publications, 1 Station Hill, Redruth, Cornwall. TR15 2PP

2002 Competition Number 3
Competition judged by Bill Mycock.
Winning Poem


The photograph is brown, curled,
splitting at the edges.
There, lined, cracked,
is my Nan and
her bosom friend,
Mrs Stringer.

It is their bosoms
which arrest the gaze.
Women do not have bosoms like that
these days.

Wild permed hair blowing
they lean nonchalantly
against the rail
of a coast-hugging pleasure boat
two ageing Saucy Nancies,
corsetted, tweed-coat belted and buttoned,
resisting the salty,
groping, off-shore wind.

They are galleons
surging through strife.
They are tug-boats
chugging to the mussel
and whelk stall.
They embody the craft of life,
staunch hearts thundering
under stout chests:
their chests bulwarks against uncertainty.

Laughing at me from
their faded past land
I smell the sea and taste the vinegar
longing to know how and when to laugh into the wind.

Jacqueline Pritchard,
Ludgvan, Kernow.

Jacqueline Pritchard's collection,
'Another Penwith Day' ISBN 0-9547985-1-1 priced @ £3.00
is currently available from Palores Publications, 1 Station Hill, Redruth, Cornwall. TR15 2PP

2002 Competition Number 2
Competition judged by Eleanor Maxted.
Winning Poem


As he lay, wizened little monkey,
in his pool of blood
the sun chanced its arm
shattering battle grey glass
crept in through his brand new navel
to strike a bargain with his soul.

Now, forever. he is touched.
Touched by the sun, and sometimes
he is mad, with the blaze of the noon day sun
in his eyes and his laugh bums
and his friends turn to shadows
and the sunburn is his soul

Now, forever. he is touched.
touched by the sun, and othertimes
he is kind, when the morning sun plays on his smile
as he laughs sunbeams fall to the ground
and the whole world is his friend
and the happiness is his soul.

Now, forever. he is touched.
Touched by the sun, and always
he loves, while the summer sun burnishes his locks golden
his laughter is carried on the back of porpoises
and his friends know that they are loved
and the sunshine is his soul

Crispin Williams,
St Ives, Kernow.

2002 Competition Number1
Competition judged by Jenny Hamlett.
Winning Poem

Driving Mr Watts to the Day Centre

This morning it's his jacket zip
that won't do up. He won't go out
improperly dressed. She struggles
for an age. His silver hair's
immaculately brushed.
He gazes in the mirror; past himself,
sees me, says:

'Who's she? What's she doing here?
Send her away. I won't go with her.'

She leads him gently to the gate,
apologising for weeds, for flaking paint,
kisses him tenderly and waves
and waves until we're out of sight.
Fidgeting in limbo
he doesn't turn to see.

That night, when we get back,
he'll say.

Why are we stopping? l don't live here.
Who's that woman? l won't go with her.'

She's there with open arms, another kiss
helps him inside, says what they'll have to eat.

On the hall table, the evening newspaper;
someone has dragged a sledge across Antarctica
or swum a marathon
or sailed alone around the moon.

Jenny Galton-Fenzi,
Totnes, Devon.