The Crows

by Angus Cronin Harrison, Brisbane State High School, South Brisbane


It’s there.
It’s always there.
Staring at me like it doesn’t have eyelids.
Its sapphire blue eyes are beautiful,
Yet deceiving.
Its black feathers remind of a shadow,
That follows me everywhere.
It opens its beak and screams,
Like someone in terrible pain.
I run for my life.
Yet it follows.
Yet THEY follow.
I keep running and try to find a way to escape.
But then I am suddenly consumed by the dark swarm of evil.
And once they finish,
The crows will hunt once more.
 


Judge’s Report

Zenobia Frost

This year’s Paul Sherman Award entries showed a great deal of creativity. What struck me was that though the poets’ topics were diverse — tackling war, the environment, family — the poems themselves cleaved to more traditional verse forms. Throughout the entries, we had lots of word-music, rhyme and rhythm. The poems that stood out as winners were the ones who used this music most subtly.

It will be no surprise to hear me say that I read a lot of poetry. It might be stating the obvious, too, to hear that I read some pretty literary fiction. But the books that really, really excited me in childhood happen to be the ones I still reread most today: Harry Potter.

I thought I’d share with you my two favourite pieces of advice JK Rowling gives to young writers: “Read everything you can get your hands on” and “be ruthless about protecting your writing time.” The poems here suggest the start of lots of promising careers in writing. Poets, make sure you each cast Patronuses around your creativity; protect it and foster brave writing by challenging yourself: read fantastic and fantastical books and poems.

Three poems were highly commended this year: “Metaphorical Poem”, which experimented with the power of metaphors to evoke feeling; “Dragon’s Lair”, which constructs a fantastical narrative; and “The Girl Who Made the Rivers Run Red”, a spooky poem with a great rhythm.

This year’s third-place winner was “Four Seasons”, which employed a modified haiku form to chart the changing of seasons throughout a year. This poem uses evocative images to set a gentle pace. In second place — and with a fantastic title — “Singing at 52-Hertz” is an emotive poem combining a conversational tone with experiments in rhyme.

This year’s Paul Sherman Award goes to “The Crows”, a short poem evoking the tense mood of Hitchcock’s The Birds. I loved this poem for the quiet sense of humour in its melodrama; its powerful, creepy imagery — “It’s always there/ staring at me like it doesn’t have eyelids”; and its easy free-verse rhythm.

Thank you and congratulations to all entrants, but especially to this evening’s prize-winners.
 

Upcoming Events

Atherton SHS Presents

Atherton State High School Presents will be the first activity for the Townsville Branch in 2019. The program is designed to share experiences and practical advice relating to the different contexts of English. Full details are available here. Where: Pimlico SHS When: Saturday 2 March, 2019 Time: AGM - 8:30, first session ...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   8:30 AM
Date:   Saturday 2nd March 2019
Venue:   Pimlico High School
Phone Enquiries:   0455 464 000
Email Enquiries:   adminofficer@etaq.org.au


March Seminar 2019: Ready, Set ... Read

Ready, Set ... Read The March Seminar will be held on 23 March, 2019 at Corinda State High School. We are delighted to anounce Ali Cobby Eckerman  and Ali Alizadeh are both coming and will present  workshops. Program is available. You may register online or if you wish you may complete the Registration form and return th...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   8:15 AM
Date:   Saturday 23rd March 2019
Venue:   Corinda State High School
Email Enquiries:   adminofficer@etaq.org.au


May Seminar 2019: Ready, set ... mark!

May Seminar: Ready, set ... mark May Seminar will be held at University of Queensland, St Lucia (tbc) on 18th May, 2019 for the full day - 9:00 am to 2:30 pm. The May seminar will focus on task design, moderation, quality assessment and assessment and standards for years 7-10. Do you have a task you love and would be happy to pres...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 18th May 2019
Venue:   University of Queensland
Phone Enquiries:   0455 464 000


State Conference 2019

State Conference will be held on 17th August 2019 at Lourdes Hill College,Hawthorne Road, Hawthorne.

The Date Claimer and Call for Presenters is now available

Category:   State Conference
Start Time:   1:00 PM
Date:   Saturday 17th August 2019
Venue:   Lourdes Hill School
Phone Enquiries:   0455 464 000


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