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24 May 2022

Offaly student wins award in Trócaire Poetry Ireland competition

Offaly student  wins award in Trócaire Poetry Ireland competition

Tullamore student Liam York won his category in the Trocaire Poetry Ireland competition for his highly impressive poem

A TULLAMORE primary school student has won a top poetry award in the Trócaire and Poetry Ireland annual competition which this year had the theme 'Pathways to Peace',

Liam York who is a student at Tullamore Educate Together National School was named the winner in the Primary Senior Category with his poem ‘Journey to Peace.'

The competition uses the arts to raise awareness about global justice and ecological and equality issues.

Liam's highly impressive and touching poem is appropriate for the times we are living in.

You can read it below.

Journey to Peace

As she walks down the war–stricken road,

Gazing around at the ruined homes,

Imagining all of the life that once inhabited these old ruins,

She knows she must walk on.

She keeps on walking,

Comes to a meadow.

No more scattered debris,

No more distressing scenes,

Just vast, open green.

She walks and walks,

Arriving in a distant town,

Without broken buildings,

Without bombs.

Will she find safety here?

Will she find peace?

No one should be forced to flee their homes,

To be forced to search for safety,

But still, they are.

Can we now imagine a world of peace?

Can we take this journey together?

Jane O’Hanlon from Poetry Ireland said: “With winners from nine counties again this year, we’d like to thank everyone who entered and to those who helped and encouraged them.

“This has been a difficult year, particularly for schools which had to close again for part of the year. We really appreciate everyone - teachers, parents and young writers - for their continued interest and support for the Trócaire Poetry Ireland Poetry Competition. The adult categories this year feature Mary Turley-McGrath - a previous winner in 2014 - and the quality of the poetry is, again, superb.”

As a physical awards ceremony is not possible due to Covid-19 restrictions, Trócaire and Poetry Ireland will celebrate the winners of the competition with a streamed video event, while a booklet of the winning poems is due to be published in 2022. The event will be streamed on Poetry Ireland’s YouTube channel on Culture Night (Friday, September 17) at 6pm.

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