The Shirley Waite Poetry Award

The Award’s second airing was the nucleus of the 11th October meeting. The trophy was introduced into the circle’s program last year to honour the memory of our dear friend and fellow writer Shirley, whose sudden death in November 2018 stunned all who knew her.

Her absence from the writing scene in Scarborough is tangible and she is still missed by many who knew and loved her as their treasured memories live on.

The Award is part of the circle’s contribution to National Poetry Day’s annual celebration of poetry. The remaining part of that celebration is – reading poetry. Namely, poetry written by members for the competition.

This year’s theme was Environment and was judged by guest speaker Jane Sudworth.

Jane is highly regarded for her shrewd judgement of poetry and she has assisted in several poem-sifting processes for local competitions. She is an exceptional poet herself and her work has been featured online as well as published in various anthologies. She is part of a trio of performing poets known as Poetry on Fire and is also a member of the Scarborough Poetry Workshop.

Jane gave a brief commentary on the process of how she approached the competition in order to make her final choice, before reading out a poem by Shirley entitled Pink Frog and announcing the winners as follows:

1st Place to Jill Boyes for Starless.

2nd Place to Lel Meleyal for Zakynthos.

3rd Place to Katie Wilkinson for Wild Orchid.

Jill receives the trophy from Julie Fairweather (last year’s winner)

The reading of all entries and Jane’s feedback comments encouraged lively discussions and the final part of the evening informed what we, as writers, can learn from poetry to enhance our prose.

It was an engaging evening and a fitting tribute to Shirley’s memory.

The next meeting is on Tuesday 8th November, 7.15 p.m. – 9.30 p.m. at Newby and Scalby Library, 450 Scalby Road, Scarborough YO12 6EE.  All are welcome to attend (18 years plus). Guests £4, Members Free. The theme is FIRE. See the DIARY page of the website for further details.

Submitted by Julie Fairweather

Shirley Waite, 19.4.1953 – 09.11.1918