Friday Headlines

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Simon Armitage inspired EHS writing competition 2020

04 December 2020

This week, we would like to showcase some more of the fantastic poems that were successful in our EHS Writing Competition.

Towards the end of last academic year the English department set EHS Senior school students the challenge of responding creatively to some poems they read by Simon Armitage, the UK’s current Poet Laureate. We have received some fantastic entries and the winning student in each group was celebrated in assembly on Friday 13th November. Each winner will receive a book voucher worth £15, while each runner-up will receive a more edible reward! Well done to all who entered this competition; there will be future competitions coming up, so watch out for notices in assembly and form-time.

Winner – Year 11! Olivia Smith 11LM – a poem based on ‘About His Person’

Two pounds ninety pence,

A card of identification.


A bag of groceries, full of essentials,

A flask of tea, with one sugar.


A fresh pansy, newly bought,

A silver chain, centred by a picture for thought


Falling liquid escaping the eye,

A beating heart silencing the mind.


Worn boots ready for mud,

A woolly scarf to bury in.


A blanket, the shade of ash,

Perfect for hiding.


A poem to read aloud,

But not to be heard.


A plastic bag and a broom to collect the debris,

Keeping him somewhat decently presented.


The bell sang from the tower,

Calling out to the breeze.


Three chimes,

That was all.


From a lost person,

A broken heart.


Runners-up – Molly Roberts 11LM – a short story based on ‘About His Person’

& Jahnvi Patel 11M – a poem based on ‘About His Person’


Winner – Year 12! Lujayn Ismail SFDR12– a poem called ‘Her’, based on ‘The Not Dead’

A thick pool of crimson

Oozes out of his ripped flesh,

Trickling, dripping down his stomach,

Trickling like the gentle drops of rain on

Her cheeks that summer’s evening,

Her; his wife, his love, his life

Slowly slipping away,


Yet, with each laboured breath, he tries to stand,

And the blood stains

Dark cherry, soaking through the thick cotton blend of his uniform,

Deep cherry, like the sweet wine they sipped that summer’s evening

From the same glass, they’d shared, while he held her close and

Stared into the depths of the glistening pools of azure that were her eyes,

Her; his wife, his love, his life

Slowly fading away,


Yet still, with each wave of crippling pain,

He fights,

And the warm stream of scarlet seeps down,

Stoking the raw, exposed skin of his hip,

Warm like her slow, long breaths on the hairs of his neck that summer’s evening,

As the Forces’ Sweetheart sang, they had swayed, head on his shoulder,

And he feels her warm, long, slow breaths on the hairs of his neck as he take his last,

Her; his wife, his love, his life no more.


Winner – Year 13! Zoya Hussain SFM13 – a poem called ‘Happiness’

Silk, snow dress flowing.

Wild, untouched strands of auburn dancing on her head.

Her glistening eyes beaming at The Smiths singing ‘Girlfriend in a Coma’.


For once, the wide smile on my face is real. No more illusions.

Pure happiness.

I think back to when, not long ago, I lost my mind.

Sanity was not working so I just kept walking.


Darkness provided comfort to the bad thoughts and loneliness.

I felt no guilt with the warm blood on my broken hands.

The blood was theirs. Those who had locked me up.

Those who had told me I was not allowed to love.


Yet here I am.

Normal, happy, one of them.

Ready to give my life to the women in front of me.

Scared she will see right through me.

Scared I will mess up.

Scared she will figure out that, that I am just a joke. A lowlife.



What is she turns her back on me? What happens when she learns of my offences?

A gunw with me? I’m not meant to have one.

Is everything a façade?


Mind is racing. Music blaring and roaring in my head.

Happiness. Music blaring and roaring in my head.

Happiness. Love. Death. Gone.

It’s too late. My future, our future – it’s gone.

I have messed up again

Her smile died as fast as I pulled the trigger.

But my smile is still there. Only my mind has gone too far this time.

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