2008 Creatrix Prize Winners

Congratulations to the winners from Issue 2.

Thank you to Planet Books for providing the Creatrix Prizes.
Thank you to Andrew Burke for judging the competition.
Thank you to the poets who contributed to Issue 2.


First Prize – Annamaria Weldon

Paper, ink, inkstone, brushes

Second Prize – Flora Smith


Commended – Louise Evans

So you think you can dance?


First Prize

Paper, ink, inkstone, brushes
The four precious things of a library (Traditional Chinese).

There’s the forest, like an inkstone
hunkered as memory
shouldering cobalt skies

streaked with white brush-strokes
sloping to headlands of lampblack
at rest on a parchment sea.

On the horizon, veranda’s edge
end of my desk, in the page margins
landscape waits expectantly …

elements insisting I write, patient
as four precious things of a library.

Has nobody told them, then
how archives of words were effaced
all the books burnt at your wake …

On the cusp of thought
in folds of hill, at the limn of sight
something remains, attends my first line.

Reminded of calligraphers who mill
difficult silence for dark grains
I lift the inkstone’s weight, begin again.

 Annamaria Weldon

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Second Prize


If ever I come back to Kusadasai
I would not return to that small stone house,
the one they say was built for Mary.
I would not light a candle, shuffle past
hushed and half-believing, or kneel down
on cool worn stone and say a prayer.

I’d climb instead the hills behind,
climb past morning’s ringing goatbells.
I’d sit in warm sun among red poppies,
gold and white daisies, purple runners
and the yellowing heads of wild aniseed.
I’d look over blue valleys to the far sea,
to ancient Ephesus in her ruined grace
and pray to all the gods of that place.

Flora Smith

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So You Think You Can Dance?

Young Teddy went to Dancing School to solve his great dilemma ~
he wanted to increase his odds of going out with Emma.
Now, Ted was not a handsome boy, with ears like handlebars,
and a mouth crammed full of jutting teeth made it hard to say his ‘R’s.

They sounded more like ‘W’s: ‘Recruit’ became ‘wecwoot’
so instead of risking ridicule, poor Ted stayed mostly mute.
The dancing classes went quite well until one Friday night,
when suddenly his teacher said, “Now, who will you invite?

“It’s time to get a partner, Ted. You can’t dance on your own.
It’s time to ask that special girl ~ is there someone you can phone?”
Poor Ted went scarlet in the face, and broke out in a sweat…
He knew with sinking heart that this was something he’d regret.

The day then dawned to make that call, and Ted was in a spin.
He dialled with shaking fingers and his voice came out all thin…
“Uh, hullo Emma, this is Ted ~ you know ~ fwom English Lit?
And Maths and Twigonometwy and Fwench with Mrs Pitt?”

“…It’s who?” asked Emma testily, not trying very hard
to place his voice, or classes, for he had caught her quite off-guard.
He stammered more inanities, then grabbed his only chance ~
he cast around to find a way to ask her out to dance.

“I need a fwiend to pwactice with, evewy Fwiday night
at Wosie’s Dance Academy… I…I thought you’d do alwight.”
Now Emma was not a kindly girl; charity not her style,
but mischief making was such fun… she smiled a wicked smile.

“Why, Ted,” said she, “How nice you are to ask me out with you.”
Though who this silly caller was, she didn’t have a clue.
Come Friday, Ted dressed smartly for his very special date.
He hurried through his supper for he didn’t dare be late.

He walked around to Emma’s house,  a posy in his hand,
I’m sure she’ll be impwessed with Wosie’s Wacy Wagtime Band!”
…The shock was hard to swallow when she opened up the door ~
Ted’s face went red, then scarlet when he saw what Emma wore:

Her hair was spiked and gaudy in a range of rainbow hues,
and on her feet she sported two big clunky platform shoes.
“Let’s go, then, shall we?” Emma said and gave a cheeky pout,
and Ted was treated to the sight of two front teeth blacked out.

Not wanting to be daunted, our young Teddy saw his chance
to prove he was a ‘somebody’, and show that he could dance.
That night he danced the Tango, and the Foxtrot and the Waltz,
Then he danced a nifty Quickstep with exhilarating schmaltz.

He danced the mighty Mambo, then the Rumba with aplomb,
And Emma felt as though it was her first night at the prom.
Her feet, they barely touched the floor the whole entire night,
regardless of the fact that they were not exactly light.

And by the time he took her home, young Teddy was on fire,
and Emma couldn’t help herself ~ she truly did admire
the way he hit that dance floor, and how he moved his feet…
and underneath his shyness…well…he was really rather sweet.

Louise Evans

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