Monday, 2 March 2009

Okay, so it's not crime...but I WON!!!

Unfortunately, like many working people with young families, I don't have much opportunity to attend a Writers' Group as such, but I do have an equivalent of this over at Writers News Talkback - a friendly online chat forum for writers of all ilks.
Each month they hold a competition called the 'One Word Challenge,' whereby the word is chosen by the winner of the previous month, who is also the judge.
February's word was 'Chaos,' but instead of entering a prose piece - which I'd done to no avail twice before - I had an idea for poetry instead, although it's not really my forte.....
....and to my amazement I won! And there's talk of an anthology, too.
I have had a few articles published before, in magazines, plus I once helped on the editorial team for a book by Yorkshire Arts Circus, but this is the first writing contest I've actually won so I'm pretty chuffed with myself.
However, there's always a downside...I'm now the judge for the March challenge (oh no!).
Anyway, the winning entry is below and remember the theme is 'Chaos.' I hope you like it... do let me know.

‘Good Morning, Daddy!’

That’s just great,
We’re gonna be late,
Must get moving, no time to wait,
‘Libby! Joe! It’s ten past eight,’
Onto the landing, I slipped on a skate!

Burnt toast, ironing board up,
Oh shoot! Cornflakes in a cup!
Just a gulp of coffee for me to sup,
The yelp, yelp, yelp of that bloody pup,
And the kids constant arguing… ‘Oh, shurrup!’

‘Hey! Don’t poke little Joe’s eye,’
‘Libby! Look, you’ve made him cry,’
‘Be good for Daddy – please give it a try,’
Now where the heck’s my flippin’ tie?
God, this place is like a piggin’sty.

‘NO! Gimme that knife cos you may get hurt,’
‘I’ll scrape that toast while I iron your skirt,’
‘Joe wipe your face, it’s full of dirt,’
We’re gonna be late; it’s a dead cert,
‘Oh blast’…burnt toast all over my shirt!

‘Now get yourselves dressed; I aint got time,'
‘He’s pinched my toast. OY, that’s mine.’
‘Here have mine. God, it’s twenty to nine,’
Yelp, yelp. ‘Move that pup, the little swine,’
Sod the brew, I could do with some wine!

‘Where are your book-bags? Libby! Joe!’
‘Come on! Help me, it’s time to go,’
‘Don’t turn the telly on…I said, "NO!"
‘But it’s my favourite American show,’
Then I looked outside and saw the snow!

‘Now get your coats on as fast as you can,’
‘Car’s frozen - I need warm water in a pan,’
Honestly, I’m normally a very calm man,
And the door, I really didn’t mean to slam,
But over I slipped and up flew the pan!

‘Daddy! Daddy! Are you okay?’
It felt like a punch off Cassius Clay,
‘Daddy, since you're okay, can we now play?’
‘You what? No chance, no flippin’ way!’
‘Aww, but it’s snowing…and it’s SATURDAY!!!

40 lines (excluding the ‘DOH!’).


Chris Picton said...

Well done Col, can see why you won, the poem takes me back to the chaos in our house too.

Col Bury said...

Cheers, Chris. There were more of you so it must've been even worse than that!

Matt Hilton said...

Well done, Col.
It's things like this that makes it all worthwhile, isn't it? Excellent news about your win - the first of many to come.

Col Bury said...

Thanks, Matt. A small taste of success. Just goes to show that if you put things out there, you never know. (Stimulus and respone). And I'm learning a lot whilst having a go. Fiction next!

Col Bury said...

I'm learning a lot, but not how to spell response! I hate typos.

Verica said...

My comment does not appear to have registered, so I'll repeat it:

A worthy winner and so true to life!

Col Bury said...

Thanks for taking the time to comment, Verica. I appreciate it.

Col Bury said...


o CommentAuthorIsland Girl
o CommentTimeMar 2nd 2009
POETRY ANNOUNCEMENT: I’ll cut right to the chase and tell you the winner of the poetry section is ColB for his ‘chaotic’ version of a busy morning at home. Congratulations Col!
...Finally the winning entry by ColB...As you can tell from my comments above, so much good work from so many clever people made it a tough decision to pick just one. In the end, it came down to a sense of fun wrought from mundane routine. It was a humorous scene that I’m sure many of us could relate to and the poem was easily read, having the potential to entertain a large room of people as easily as a handful of listeners. The confused antics and frustrating events are, of course, exaggerated for effect but it rings a scarily loud bell to anyone who has ever tried to get kids off to school on time. (I go through a slightly less slapstick version of this every morning) The rhyme and rhythm were good and lent itself to the frenetic pace and overall amusing interpretation of a parent under duress, working to beat the clock. A delightful, and in the end, for me, a winning read.

Clare said...

How did I manage to miss this on both sites?!
I'm sure that poem resonated in many households Col - and somehow it is very easy to picture you like this in the am!
Very well done - well written and entertaining (and not a criminal in sight!)

Col Bury said...

Thanks, Clare.
It just goes to show there's more to a criminal mind than just crime!