Saturday, March 05, 2005

Esteddfod poems

Writers are not, in general, very competitive: I think most of their energy is expended in envy, jealousy and hatred of all successful writers, rather than in thinking about relative merit. Underlying this is an immense egoism that puts the writer first (in their estimation) and everyone else nowhere.

I've never been very keen on entering competitions especially if I'm unlikely to win. But at least the annual e-steddfod (virtual eisteddfod) doesn't, unlike most open poetry competitions, charge you money to be branded a failure, so I have entered it, with (modest laugh) some success. Or in the words of that Oscar-winning actress "Oh wow!, This means you really love me". Well, I wouldn't say that, but I must be doing something right, at least.

Haiku: Youth (1st prize)

Spring lambs jump for joy
Heedless that their destiny
Is to become sheep

Apology (1st prize)

Sorry I can't help you now
Sorry I can't help you
Sorry I can't help
Sorry I can't
Sorry I

Welsh industry (3rd prize)

Once the ports kept freighters full
Of iron and coal, slate and wool

Marinas occupy the docks
With bistros and apartment blocks

Where a factory used to stamp and rage
Now there's an annual car-rally stage

Railway tracks grow dull with rust
The rotting trucks are filled with dust

Hands fall idle for want of tasks
"What of Welsh industry?" someone asks

The answer is becoming clear:
It would be a good idea

Not placed

Peace or war?

Please tell me, for I am not sure,
As propaganda fills the screen:
Do these things happen in peace or war?

Does hatred of other countries' poor
Become part of the social scene?
Please tell me, for I am not sure

When half are against, half are for
And nobody can fall between-
Do these things happen in peace or war?

Would the leaders by whom we set most store
Mislead the media machine?
Please tell me, for I am not sure

The death-count's like a cricket score
And the images become obscene-
Do these things happen in peace or war?

As propaganda fills the screen
I understand what it must mean;
I thought so once, but now I'm sure:
These things happen in peace or war


A Methodist preacher called Glyn
Thought it time for a sermon on sin
"When so many stray,
There's plenty to say-
The problem is where to begin."

No comments: