We believe, you achieve
Nov 17, 2017

Wolstanton High School students shortlisted for Staffordshire Young Poet Laureate

Wolstanton High School celebrates as three of its students achieved a top 5 shortlisting for the recent Staffordshire Young Poet Laureate.

From hundreds of applications Abigail, Edward and Thomasin all finished within the top 5 places for the role, managing to beat pupils aged 14-18 from colleges and schools across the county.

The trio worked in their own time to create their poems while also working within the English Department to prepare for the extremely competitive and challenging interview.

Chris Nelson, Wolstanton High School English Teacher said, “it has been an emotional journey for all involved; each candidate grew in confidence after intense coaching helped some overcome the natural anxiety of sharing an extremely personal style of writing.

Wolstanton High School has been presented with a special award recognising the achievement and dedication of the pupils at the school.

Julie Yarwood, Executive Principal said “Abigail, Edward and Thomasin have really shone through the shortlisting process. To achieve top five status is a real achievement and credit to their own and the English team's dedication to continued success.”

The poems created by Abigail, Edward and Thomasin for the shortlisting process are below:

What is Love - by Abigail

What is love?
It is not about hearts and flowers
It is not ridiculous Instagram posts,
Or romantic sunsets,
It is not about diamonds and puppies, or expensive holidays,
Or presents with bows and boxes of chocolates.

No, it is not.

It is about little things, the little things that make you smile.
It is about mismatched pyjamas, oversized hoodies and messy buns.
It is about the steaming cups of tea when you get home from work, deflated.
It is about emptying the dishwasher...without being asked...

And just being there.

Knowing that somebody who is there who you can trust.
And who can trust you.

Support you,
Laugh with you
And be yourself.

That, is love.

Stoke-on-Trent by Edward

The silhouette of the bottle kilns,
A piece of our history
Our small little cafes, as usual, still busy

A town covered in smog, yet we walk with pride.
We couldn't live without it; it's a part of our lives.
Rundown buildings, still retain their beauty

Don’t take that too seriously; beauty is used loosely.
One of our favourite things, obviously The Potters
We've got to admit the fans are off their rockers
But even then they give us a brilliant time,
So in this poem – I think they deserve a line!

I didn't even know what an oatcake was-
And since when was it pronounced, "Buzz"?

And we know we're not perfect, things are wrong
For example, our sewer, man they pong!

It's not where I was born, or where I was grown,
But no matter what, I'm proud to call it home...

The Winking Man by Thomasin


Eternal winking and altering fate
Watching over the emerald incrusted county,
From nothing to something he watched it change;
watched cities move and drift and twist and shake.
Witnessing buildings crumble and industry thrive,
He saw it all with his one winking eye.

Ice blue lakes glistening against sun-kissed skies,
blinding white glaciers that moved slowly over time.
Crystal stars to sing to when the night turned grey
and a golden sun to laugh to on a scolding day.
Velvet, shamrock sheets that blanket the earth
and trees standing to attention in the autumn breeze.
Grand castles to adore and structures to admire.
Lying upon rocks watching his county grow strong
with a simple knot that kept it together for so long.

Silhouettes of hope and crippling wealth
sprung up on the horizon and filled the skies with oxyn clouds.
Needle-shaped monoliths that brought joy to the many
But he couldn’t help thinking –
What would be the cost to his beloved county?
The cheers of “ Ay up” filled the air
and lifted his spirits amongst the bustling towns.
Ceramic smiles and bone-dry delight
lit up the cobbles under the smog filled sky.
Black chimneys breathing fire,
Thunder filled cloulds.
Could this be the protection to keep his county standing proud?

As the slow demise became so clear
Cheers and shouting came to an end.
Deafening silence overpowered the bliss
And the utopia shattered into millions of pieces.
He knew the euphoria was too good to be true;
As the kilns fell, his faith did too.
The jubilation came to a sudden end
and grew weeks of sorrow between its bricks.
Hope of industry did breed true misery

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