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2023 Open Poetry Results

We would like to congratulate all our winners and thank everyone who entered the Open Poetry Competition this year. Congratulations to John Gallas for his winning entry horsebreezes.


each earlymorning Tui Spence
parked at the coldshade end of River Loop
& walked the 2 miles along Brethers Fence
where the giant horses grazed by the waters edge

dapplegrey percherons high-eyed as oaks
they daily upped & followed Tui Spence along the wire
together into the furtherwidening light
their gentle walk a thunder

downalong the plashy untreed bank
wind ever ruffled the rivertop
& the four pied massy drays
with halfshut eyes
snorted at their exercise
tress-manes snapping longheads atoss

like the happy mysteries of the moon
the radio the buried bulb
the breathing heart & the risen loaf
the quiet cause
of likely laws
remained by choice unlearned by Tui Spence

who could not but like to think
that all the morning spin & stream
down Brethers Fence
the trumpet-light the tattering sedge
the sun-hoovered frost & the chopswash tide

had something to do
with the beasts that walked beside

John Gallas

2023 Winners

Our thanks also go to the shortlist team and to William Sieghart, our 2023 Open Poetry Judge. Without them we wouldn’t be able to run our competitions. The winning entries can be downloaded and enjoyed from the table below.

PositionTitleAuthorDownload Link (Subject to Availability)
1stHorse BreezesJohn Gallas Download PDF of Horse Breezes-Shaped Hole by John Gallas
2ndWe sat not talkingJennifer Pescod Download PDF of We sat not talking by Jennifer Pescod
3rdStoney Littleton Long Barrow John Sewell Download PDF of Stoney Littleton Long Barrow by John Sewell
Hilly Cansdale Local PrizeThe Castles We BuiltNicola Keller Download PDF of The Castles We Built by Nicola Keller
Highly CommendedPicking BlackberriesMarilyn Timms Download PDF of Picking Blackberries by Marilyn Timms
William Sieghart

Competitions Archive

Winners of our previous Competitions