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

An Afternoon with Lindsay Williams

An Afternoon with Lindsay Williams and the Analytical Essay will be held at Centenary Heights State High School, Performing Arts Complex on Wednesday 16th October  2019 from 3:15 to 5:45 pm. A Certificate of Participation for 2 hours CPD will be issued to participants. Afternoon tea will be served from 3:15 to 3:45. For furt...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   3:15 PM
Date:   Wednesday 16th October 2019
Venue:   Centenary Hts SHS
Email Enquiries:   adminofficer@etaq.org.au


Thou wouldst be great

Charlie Thomson, Amy Proud and Rosie Maguire  present their findings from the Bell Shakespeare Regional Teacher Mentorship on Saturday 19 October, 2019 from 9:00 till 11:30.

For all the details, download the flyer

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 19th October 2019
Venue:   St Paricks College on the Strand
Email Enquiries:   adminofficer@etaq.org.au


Early Career Conference

The Early Career Conference will be held at the University of Southern Queensland, Springfield Campus.  The program is now available here and will be mailed to members later this week. Registrations are now open and will close on Friday 18th October, 2019. You may register online or by completing the registration form and mailing it ...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 26th October 2019
Venue:   Springfield Campus of USQ
Venue Address:   USQ Springfield Campus, 37 Sinnathamby Blvd, Springfield Central 4300
Email Enquiries:   adminofficer@etaq.org.au


An Afternoon of Moderation

The Darling Downs Branch will present an afternoon of moderation on Wednesday 30 October from 3:30 - 5:30. This will allow members and teachers to participate in an afternoon of moderation.  These professional conversations will be conducted in a collegial manner, and allow teachers to read responses to FIA4 written by a range of stu...

Category:   Workshop
Start Time:   3:30 PM
Date:   Wednesday 30th October 2019
Venue:   Fairholme College
Email Enquiries:   adminofficer@etaq.org.au


Grammar Day 2019

ETAQ will be condudcting another of the very successful grammar days on Saturday 9th November  at Iona College, Wynnum. Download the flyer for further information. Registrations will open on Monday 30 September and close on Monday 28 October 2019.   ...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 9th November 2019
Venue:   Iona College


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English Educator of the week

 

Meet Boori at UQ on Monday 23rd September from 8:30 am

Details available here

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