Thursday, 21 April 2011

My Valentine Poetry Competition

My Valentine Poetry Competition

Photo shows winner Richard Hall and the runners up.
Clare County Library and the Ennis Book Club Festival, which takes place in early March every year, partnered with the Ennis branch of Caring for Carers recently to run a poetry competition. The competition was open to carers all over the county and the theme was ‘My Valentine’. There was a huge response and many budding poets emerged. At the launch of the competition in February Frances O’Gorman of Clare County Library and the Ennis Book Club Festival said that she and her colleagues were delighted to be involved with this venture. “This is a wonderful community project and one that the Ennis Book Club Festival is delighted to be associated with. Poetry always features strongly in our programme so it’s a perfect link-up,” Brigid Barron, research and program manager with Caring for Carers Ireland explained that “family carers spend a lot of time caring at home and that often gives them time for reflection…some of the poetry out there has been excellent, very touching and expressive.” Brigid also noted how crucial it is to recognise the role of carers in the home. Susan Hogan, development officer with Caring for Carers, added that there are hopes to roll out the competition to other locations outside of the county. The winner, Richard Hall, received a voucher for a meal for two and tickets to the Vona Groarke and Tom Conaty poetry reading which took place on the 5th March, during this year’s Ennis Book Club Festival. The five runners-up, Maureen Devanny, Anna Sheehan, Elizabeth Curtin, Cissie Collins and Maria Mulqueen, all received tickets to the poetry reading as well. A booklet, containing many of the poems submitted for the competition, is currently being put together by Clare County Library and Caring for Carers.

Winning Poem by Richard Hall:

My Valentine
How do you know when you are in love?
It's a feeling that engulfs your heart
You're alive when you are together
And lifeless when you are apart

I was eighteen she was sixteen
She more than brightened up my life
I was the happiest man on earth
When she consented to be my wife

We were married on St. Stephens' Day
In December of Fifty Nine
I love her more now than I did then
My one and only Valentine.

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