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global poetry competition – winner

global poetry competition – winner

global poetry competition - Kilgraston pupil one of the winners

Kilgraston pupil Anna has won a top prize in a global poetry competition. Upper Sixth’s Anna was the only Scottish winner in this year’s Foyle Young Poets of the Year award and was one of only fifteen winning young poets from over 6,000 people who entered.

Anna’s poem, Total, was about exam stress, reflecting the experience as a balance sheet.

Speaking in an article on STV, Anna said: “The poem was written the week before results day, it’s a poem about exam anxiety. Every line was given a monetary value to equate to the emotional strain I was experiencing.

“However, you can’t put a price-tag on personality; I am so much more than just results. The final line – ‘trying to add up the breeze’ – represents the impossible, like catching smoke, it’s a poetically expressed concept of being unquantifiable.

“I think the judges all had their own results day memory so this struck a chord.”

The global poetry competition news featured in a number of press outlets including the BBC’s Newsround where Kilgraston’s Headmistress, Mrs Dorothy MacGinty, said: “Anna has been an inspirational pupil to teach throughout her seven years with us. We have witnessed her talent and enthusiasm for the subject of English rapidly develop and could not be more thrilled for her.”

The competition’s virtual award ceremony takes place Thursday 22nd October, where Anna will read her poem to the other 14 winners, guests and judges.

In an article in The Herald, Anna said: “It will still be a very moving experience. Such a shame not to actually be with the other winners and to meet the judges face-to-face but it will be a momentous opportunity nonetheless.”

Anna wins a place at a writing residential course at the Arvon Centre, The Hurst set to take place in early 2021 and you can read Anna’s winning poem below:


All slow summer long £9.99

I have been living £6.90

in a glass jar of anxiety £16.60

and dreading £7.68

a day in August £6.57

when a devious envelope £12.90

with a barbed paper tongue £3.76

will slither through the door £2.46

to determine my fate £6.83

with only a few £5.80

letters: grades that might £5.45

be as sharp as blades £9.90

or as soft as rising dough. £5.67

At the end of the day, is this £3.54

all that I amount to? £12.80

Five letters on a flimsy £6.53

ghost of paper? £6.45

The narrowest indication £3.87

of my past £7.90

and my future. £14.90

God, these £1.65

endless days of waiting £8.76

and balancing on these tenterhook £17.76

cobweb tightropes just won’t do, £4.50

they just won’t do. £14.90


I don’t want to be calculated £8.76

counted, £6.84

or summed up £7.36

in cold numbers and letters £3.56

that are typed by robotic fingers £4.90

that have no grace nor growth, £23.90

because I am breathtakingly £16.00

three dimensional, and £5.35

to total me £2.95

would be like £0.90

trying to add up the breeze. £??.??????

⁎//Please retain receipt for your records//⁎

You can read further press articles on this news in The Scotsman, the Evening Express, The Courier and the Independent School’s Council website.

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