The Sheffield Poetry Prize 2011

The Sheffield Poetry Prize 2011 (sponsored by The University of Sheffield & The Sheffield Assay Office) goes to Leah Fleetwood for 'Wet Monday'.

This poem will appear in North 49 (October 2012) and on this page, and the poet will receive £100, an engraved silver bookmark (to mark the Poetry Business 'silver' anniversary), and be invited to read at our competition winners' reading.

Jennifer Howard's poem 'Apple Jelly' came in second place, and Lesley Perrins's 'Meeting' was third.

Joseph Caldwell and Beverley Nadin were highly commended.




How rich it is to ride to homely town
on a well-sprung and heated bus –
the driver singing of his Jamaica moon –
and you awake and on the move;

and when you see an old man trip mid-street
and though the lights change to green three times –
while a just-coiffured woman helps him to his feet –
not one driver, through their wipers, sees red; 

and then to find that very volume on the lending shelf,
and bear the tale to a log stove fire;
and once finished, mourn that tale – this is wealth:
an end but also a beginning; 

and when your stomach thinks your throat's been cut
to be vouchsafed a bowl of soup, a chunky heel
of garlic bread, an intake of onion steam – but
to rise from the feast, a little hunger left. 

And rich it is – that rain still turbo-powered
and hitting your home like javelins –
to be, with or without your darling, fresh-showered,
dry-nested, snug in fine cotton under feathers.

— Leah Fleetwood (2011)




The University of SheffieldSheffield Assay Office

The Sheffield Poetry Prize is sponsored by The University of Sheffield and The Sheffield Assay Office.

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