Mary Wight wins FWS Vernal Equinox Competition

Poetry Society Member Mary Wight, from Melrose, is the winner of the 2019 Federation of Writers (Scotland) Vernal Equinox poetry competition, judged by Stephen Watt, FWS Makar for 2019.

Stephen said of Mary’s winning poem, ‘Fish’

“I found this vibrant, eavesdropping poem incredibly endearing as it rotated like a slideshow with images of friendship, romance, humour, labour and dreams. These subjects are quite ordinary in any existence, but the use of language complimented the unity and affection between the three main characters: “handbags and haunches settled” / “laughter rose in gusts” / “this team”. The envious conclusion appears to embrace a two-fold jealousy, delighting in lines such as “ash and blackened weeds fell”, capturing not only the green-eyed yearning for love but also a simmering craving to be part of this group of friends’ pack. The pendulum delivery of this poem swings between the past and the contemporary, revelling in its secrets of who the women are and why the narrator remains at a distance. I returned to this poem time and time again, quite enchanted and in love with it.”

Poetry Society Member Philip Burton (from Bacup) was Highly Commended for his poem ‘Garlands, Nut, Figures and Grace’.


“Formidable story-telling, bringing both context and a dark fairy-tale to the origins of the Britannia Coconut Dancers of Lancashire. Enchanting language, layout, rhythm and rhyme contribute towards a fascinating poem which welcomingly left field in its subject matter.”

The Federation of Writers (Scotland) is an organisation dedicated to making the written and spoken word available to the public of Scotland, with respect for diversity and recognition of additional support needs. 

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24 June 2019