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2015 Overall Winner & recipient of the Babies of Walloon bronze statuette

Chairperson’s School Award

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

The Pact by Kay Gorring (First Prize)

Empty Beds and Broken Hearts by David Campbell (Second Prize)

No Glory Here by Shelley Hansen (Third Prize)

Murray Moon by Brenda Joy (Highly Commended)

“Thy Will be Done…” by Brenda Joy (Highly Commended)

Mine on Koolan Island by Hugh Allan (Highly Commended)

It was Derby in the springtime, and the early morning sunshine
glistened silver off an aircraft near some Boabs fat and grey.
Then it roared, accelerating with a noise reverberating,
as it lifted, flying over where the town below it lay.

Clem and Emmy both were flying to a lazy island lying
to the north, and off the coastline of the Western Kimberly,
where they both had occupations in a mining operation,
and were now anticipating their approaching destiny.

On a northward track they headed, where the mud flats lay embedded
with a web of tidal rivulets that sparkled with a sheen;
and across the final reaches of the Kimberley, whose features
were a maze of finger bays with rocky headlands in between.

Then they saw it, Koolan Island, evergreen upon its high land,
with a jagged coast, and beaches softly kissed by sapphire seas.
And a cliff, becoming clearer drew the aircraft ever nearer,
‘til it skimmed across and settled on a runway girt by trees.

In her job a little later, as a pastry chef and baker,
Emmy’s thoughts were fixed on Clem inside an ore truck down the road,
where its cabin was his workplace, as he drove it to the workface
on a slope where dynamite was king, and Koolan shed her lode.

And a queue of ore trucks waited near the piles of ore created,
as a dragline-bucket loaded them to take it to the mill,
where the rubble, finely sifted, by conveyor belt was lifted
to a vessel by the quayside at the bottom of the hill.

Then as days to weeks were blending, and their first month there was ending,
they reflected on the friends they’d made; their sojourns in the pub;
playing sport for recreation; on the beach for relaxation;
and in mangroves spotting crocodiles and slipping in the mud.

And in dusky light of evenings, Clem and Emmy, both believing
they had found another Eden in the gardens round the bar,
loved the frangipani flowing in the gentle breezes blowing
off the ocean; and some islands, glowing diamonds out afar.

Then disaster came escorted by a frightful scene reported,
when a loaded ore truck tumbled from the roadway on a bend.
In the twisted wreck, still smoking, lay a body badly broken;
by the number on the door they knew the driver’s name was Clem.

Then the rescue team came speeding to the scene where Clem lay bleeding,
and his worried woman, waiting on the road above the smoke,
was surrounded by the milling of the miners strongly willing
that the driver would be rescued, and they gave poor Emmy hope.

And with ropes and people heaving, up they dragged the man, believing
that a heart so strongly beating guaranteed that he’d survive.
With emotions overflowing Emmy wiped Clem’s forehead, knowing
that his life still hung in balance – but at least he was alive.

Clem was flown by helicopter to an orthopaedic doctor
at the hospital on Koolan Island’s neighbour, Cockatoo.
And with cuts and wounds looked-after, and his broken bones in plaster,
he took months recuperating, getting back to Em ‘as new’.

He was paid out compensation by the mine’s administration,
for the roadway, when inspected, was essentially to blame.
But the wreck remained abandoned in the gully where it landed,
and they honoured Clem discreetly when the roadway wore his name.

ln the bar above the water Clem told Emmy that he sought her
hand in marriage, and she told him “abso-flamin’-lutely yes!”
They were married in the gardens, wearing frangipani garlands,
and the Koolan Island people’s hearts were filled with happiness.

Jack, My Friend by Shelley Hansen (Highly Commended)

Ipswich City Council Award – 16-17 Years

Queensland Times Award- 14-15 Years

Broderick Family Award – 11-13 Years

Ipswich District Teacher Librarian Network Award – 8-10 Years

River 94.9 Award – 5-7 Years