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River 94.9 Award – 5-7 Years

Metro Hotel Ipswich International Award – Open Age Bush Poetry

Picture Ipswich Theme Awards

Ipswich Poetry Feast Encouragement Awards

2018 Overall Winner & recipient of the Babies of Walloon bronze statuette

Rosewood Green Award – Open Age Local Poets

Joy Chambers & Reg Grundy Award – Open Age Other Poetry

Ipswich City Council Award – 16-17 Years

How to Write Poetry by Emerson Hurley (First Prize)

First Performance in Leningrad by Emerson Hurley (Second Prize)

Her Guitar by Brenda Tan (Third Prize)

We Do Not See the Moon by Maja Vasic (Highly Commended)

Echo and Narcissus, the B-Sides by Erika Strehler (Highly Commended)

A Yellow Envy by Brenda Tan (Highly Commended)

Dead Souls, Pt. III by Emerson Hurley (Highly Commended)

Crown of Thorns by Isabel Mitchell (Highly Commended)

If only, if only thorns never grew.
If only, if only the world never knew.
The prick of the thorn, that many would mourn,
The dear sweet rose would never be born.
And on her head, she would never bear,
The crown of thorns she was to wear.

Yet history will tell you it is I,
Your Lord and Saviour whom would not stand idle
In the face of mankind’s vile.
And so I fashioned myself a second child.
One whom would tame the wild,
One whom would purge the sin
Of my world from within.

And so, many, many years ago,
On the eve that marked thirteen winters,
I summoned mother nature to the child’s bed,
And the thorns grew like thread
Streaming from her head and coiling around her dread.
Weaving and sewing beneath her skin,
Working to abolish all sin.

She screamed and clawed,
Until her delicate body could take no more,
And her skin was rubbed raw.
But the thorns had weaved into her heart,
And now the two would never be apart.

After the thorns claimed her heart
She never again cried out.
Not even when I pressed upon her head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red.
For in her broken mind she knew,
Just what she had to do.
Who to punish and what to punish them for,
Until sin on this earth was no more.
For seven days and seven nights,
She would clear the earth of all those unworthy.
And with no time to waste-
The clock was already ticking.

On the first day she collected the audacious, the cavalier and the conceited.
And she pressed upon their head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red. And from their mouths they screamed “Have mercy!”
But contorta Rosaceis had none.
And so she made them kneel until their pride fell apart,
And from their chest she ripped their very heart.

On the second day she rounded up the resentful, the jealous and the covetous.
And she pressed upon their head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red.
And from their mouths they screamed “Have mercy!”
But contorta Rosaceis had none.
And so she ripped from them their tongues,
While the birds pecked out their lungs.

On the third day she summoned the corpulent, the obese and the bovine.
And she pressed upon their head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red. And from their mouths they screamed “Have mercy!”
But contorta Rosaceis had none.
And so she starved them to withered flesh,
Until all that remained was death.

On the fourth day she sought the aphrodisiac’s, the wanton and the adulterous.
And she pressed upon their head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red.
And from their mouths they screamed “Have mercy!”
But contorta Rosaceis had none.
And so she severed their head,
So they would never again lie in their bed.

On the fifth day she visited the enraged, the bitter and the furious.
And she pressed upon their head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red.
And from their mouths they screamed “Have mercy!”
But contorta Rosaceis had none.
And so she set them on fire until their bodies could attest,
To the great fire that burnt within their chest

On the sixth day she gathered the rich, the wealthy and the greedy.
And she pressed upon their head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red.
And from their mouths they screamed “Have mercy!”
But contorta Rosaceis had none
And so she buried them in gold,
Until their bodies were covered in mould.

On the seventh and final day,
She called to the unemployed, the lazy and the indolent.
And she pressed upon their head,
A crown of thorns, that pierced the flesh.
And on the snow dropped just one drop-
Of scarlet red.
And from their mouths they screamed “Have mercy!”
But contorta Rosaceis had none.
And so with thorns she bound to their hands a boulder of lead,
Until they dropped dead.

And now came sweet Rose’s final task-
The one I never asked.
Yet she gripped in her delicate fist,
The scythe and the sickle that first cut her wrist.
And drawing them to her chest she took her final breath-
And with the coup de grâce she dropped stone dead.

And from the thorns that chained her heart,
And the scarlet red where she bled apart-
The first rose grew in mourning-
And at last the rose crowned the thorns.

Queensland Times Award- 14-15 Years

Broderick Family Award – 11-13 Years

Ipswich District Teacher Librarian Network Award – 8-10 Years