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Ciarra and Amy win national competition to have their poems published

Congratulations to two of our talented students who have beaten off competition from thousands of other young people across the country, to have their poems selected for publication.

Ciarra and Amy, both in Year 9, entered their poems in the Young Writers ‘Empowered’ Competition for Key Stage 3 and 4. The competition attracted 12,000 entries from students nationally, so to be selected is an amazing achievement for Ciarra and Amy.

Their poems will now be published in the forthcoming Young Writers poetry anthology.

For her poem, ‘Scattered Pages’, Ciarra drew her inspiration from the supportive relationship she enjoys with her 21-year-old sister, while Amy’s poem expresses her experiences.

Ciarra said: “My empowerment has always come from my elder sister, Amy. She got me into my reading and writing and all the things that I like to do. The first thing I did when I was told that my poem had been selected was to tell my sister that my story about her had got me published. She was very proud.”

Amy’s poem, ‘As Free as the Swiftest Bird in the Sky’, relates her feelings on being empowered by the sense of freedom: “With poetry, you can express your personal thoughts and feelings without it being obvious,” said Amy. “It’s much more abstract, which is one of the aspects of poetry that I like. I didn’t quite believe it when I found out it was going to be published,” she added.

The girls both attend the College’s Young Writers Creative Writing Club, which is run by Miss Griffiths and Miss Stepien. Miss Griffiths said: “We are extremely proud that Amy and Ciarra’s poems have been chosen from more than 12,000 entries. They are both very talented writers and fully deserve to have their work published. We have been told that the standard of work was particularly high this year, which makes it even more of an achievement.”

She added: “Poetry is a very difficult discipline because you have to be economical with your words; you have to make each and every word count. You are also expressing your feelings, which often is not easy.”

Ciarra and Amy write fiction as well as poetry, and both intend to pursue their writing after they have left College. We cannot wait to read more of their work in the future!
Young Writers Empowered Competition website


As free as the swiftest bird in the sky, by Amy

I’m as free as the swiftest bird in the sky
Yet as shackled as a prisoner waiting to die.

No moon shines down,
Nor constellations glow:
The disorientating darkness
Prevents light from seeping through;
No hopes will come true, stranding us
Deep in the black midnight hours
Where light will never shine again.
No light comes here; no lighthouse beam reaches this dark place
Where truth is lies
And lies are truth.
Stories of love become heartbreak and hate
Stories of peace become war.

The solitary owl sits, waiting,
Lonely on the fence reached by the immobilising cold
And frost that creeps;
The trees reach into the sky,
Trying to escape,
Their spindly branches frost-bitten
As the heavens remain far above:
The place where none from mankind’s dominion dwell.

Shadows penetrate souls, leaving them as dark as the ink
That blots a crisp, clean page,
Untainted by the viciousness
Intended to pierce and break a heart and soul.

Perfection is an idea, a hope, a dream;
Perfection is a fantasy, a delusion, another world;
Perfection is untarnished and flawless;
Perfection has never existed.

Reality is feared;
Reality is unwanted;
Reality is faced by few, but by the few who
Replace hate and war
With peace,
And fight fears with courage.

I’m as free as the swiftest bird in the sky
And as shackled as one who is free to fly.


Scattered pages, by Ciarra

Monsters don’t hide under your bed,
They bury deep inside your head,
But I know that they don’t realise,
They’re blinded by a brighter side.

I fight with them,
I love with them,
I die with them,
I live with them.
I feel their pain,
I feel their sorrow.
Words cut deep,
Emotions swallowed.

Hidden deep inside these scattered pages,
Hides a story, disregarded for lack of graces,
Phones and laptops,
Shiny and new,
Mean nothing to me,
Because of you.

The flicker of paper,
The lingering desire,
They make an ember,
Of a heart with no fire.

My sister chose me,
She brought me to the light.
Took me away from screens,
Narrow and bright.

So what if I’m not
A shadowhunter,
A witch,
A demigod,
A tribute or
A vampire.
But I’m a reader,
And that’s the same thing.

So call them fake,
Say I’m too old to play pretend.
For me they’re real,
I won’t let it end.

They may be 'just fiction' to you,
But they're real enough for me.