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2013 Overall Winner & recipient of the Babies of Walloon bronze statuette

Edwards Property Mentorship Award

Ipswich Theme Awards

Chair’s Encouragement Awards

Rosewood Green Award – Open Age Local Poets

Joy Chambers & Reg Grundy Award – Open Age Other Poetry

Metro Hotel Ipswich International Award – Open Age Bush Poetry

Waiting by Catherine Lee (First Prize)

A Feather in a Locket by Robyn Sykes (Second Prize)

A Victim of War by Tom McIlveen (Third Prize)

A Little Silver Locket by Allan Goode (Highly Commended)

Aussies by Bessie Jennings (Highly Commended)

The Jumbuck Drama Club by Shelley Hansen (Highly Commended)

Said You Could Fly by Arthur Green (Highly Commended)

I’d never quite, though Davey might, have dreamt that he could fly
although in dreams, what sometimes seems like flight can signify
a need to flee, and so to see what prompted Davey’s flight,
I’d like to share what caused one pair of kids to fly that night.

When he turned nine `twas like a sign, the first night Davey flew
just like a bird, though when she heard, as Davey knew she’d do,
his mother threw a blue fit due to her concern and said,
“Don ‘t you dare try, since you can ‘t fly, to mess with Lisha ‘s head.”

“I know your tricks but she’s just six, and thinks that what you say
you do is true, and that she too, will fly like you one day.”
“Like eagles tamed,” young Davey claimed, “one night, with arms outspread,
We’ll fly so high we’ll terrify those not asleep in bed.”

At school, his threat of what they’d get if schoolmates caused her grief,
won Lisha’s heart and for her part, unquestioning belief.
So when mum tries, “They ‘re all just lies he makes up in his head,’
young Lisha’s “No, that’s just not so,” takes Davey’s side instead.

War-wives, those days, were left to raise their kids with men at war,
and faced alone, life on their own like few had known before.
When funds ran low it helped to know of cleaning jobs at night,
where kids could wait and cogitate but stay well out of sight.

Red tail-lights flashed and folks splish-splashed through rain, eight stories down,
while from outside, two, side by side, gazed at the lights uptown.
They’d both been told, “It’s far too cold and wet to go outdoors.
Don’t want a set of muddy shoe-tracks on my nice clean floors.”

The ‘Fire Stairs’ door to that eighth floor clicked shut and both kids knew
that they’d get hell if either fell and more than just words too.
As Davey tried, and pushed and pried the door without success,
young Lisha shocked, gazed at the locked steel door in some distress.

“We’re up so high. I’m scared and I just wish we’d not come out.”
“I understand. Just hold my hand,” said Davey. “I’ve no doubt
there’ll be some floor whose unlocked door will let us back inside,
and Mum won’t think (nudge, nudge, wink, wink), we’ve even been outside.”

To Lisha’s dread, young Davey led them down to the unknown,
though few would dare to venture there, so young and on their own.
“Why can’t we wait? I sure would hate to fall from way up here,”
Though I can’t fly like you, I’d try, thought Lisha, racked by fear.

But as she trips, then falls and slips and slides, to her dismay,
across the ledge towards the edge, just two arm-lengths away,
young Davey’s hand grips Lisha’s and, aware they both might fall,
tells her he’ll not, no matter what, let go of her at all.

“Don’t let me go. Please don’t let go!” Shrill screams make all aware,
as two shapes try, eight stories high, legs dangling in mid-air,
to struggle back, it’s clear they lack the strength, and all below
watch helplessly, though how to be of help none seemed to know.

As Davey’s grip begins to slip from ’round the post he cries,
wracked by remorse, and guilt of course, “Please Lisha, close your eyes.
I’ll not let go of you although we’re almost at the edge,”
but still remains, as his strength wanes, committed to his pledge.

“Please Davey, no. Don’t let me go! Don’t drop me, Davey, pleeeease. ..”
As Lisha’s cries trail off she spies, despite young Davey’s pleas,
the city’s glow way down below, as some voice says, “You might
recall I said with arms outspread, we’d fly like this one night.”

In stunned delight she glances right, to see there, in mid-air,
young Davey who had said she too, would one night as a pair,
with arms out wide, fly by his side, while clinging to his hand,
just like the boys and Wendy did in ‘Never Never Land. ‘

Though Lisha’s calmed and quite disarmed by Davey’s ‘You’re safe now,’
she wants to know, before they go, they’ll get back home somehow.
“Who knows how high we two can fly?” With arms outspread, we pair
could end this night as two souls might, beyond the stars up there.

In rain-swept streets, sheer chaos greets the first police to show.
Cries fill the air from all those there as panic reigns below.
All swore `twas plain, time and again, the boy had tried his best
to save them both, which under oath, all those there would attest.

With no heartbeat, down on the street and draped for privacy,
with hands clasped tight, as if in flight, two shapes lay silently.
All claimed they’d heard each anguished word between the girl and lad,
until that last, ‘Please hold me fast… please Davey… ‘ and he had.

But since `twould be a tragedy if these two were to die,
and much more so for Lisha though, who’s just found she can fly,
and since she’s been young Davey’s keen and most devoted friend,
they just can’t go… like this… and so… this can’t be how they’ll end.

As flung-back drapes reveal the shapes of toy-sized carnivores,
the welcome sight of morning light on Davey’s dinosaurs
fills Davey’s eyes, to his surprise, with joy to find instead
of heaven-bound, he’s safe and sound at home, in his own bed.

Was this in part, right from the start, young Davey’s flying dream
where morning brings assurance things in dreams aren’t what they seem?
Were this not so, I think I’d know, were I in Davey’s place,
to skip the sights, on rainy nights, from ‘Fire Stairs ‘ just in case.

Two Wars by Yvonne Harper (Highly Commended)

Ipswich City Council Award – 16-17 Years

Broderick Family Award – 14-15 Years

Queensland Times Award – 11-13 Years

Ipswich District Teacher Librarian Network Award – 8-10 Years

River 94.9 Award – 5-7 Years