Congratulations to Brenda Mumford, the winner of our 2019 Summer Competition, and to our two runners-up, Colette Brennan and Mags Brown! And thank you to everyone who submitted their excellent entries.
Brenda Mumford (Winner):
The earth, once patched with muted greys and browns, now adorned with emerald greens and yellows. Peaceful shorelines, waves falling and receding in their ceaseless rhythmic dance, now disturbed, scattered this way and that by brightly coloured beings, beach balls, and plastic inflatables. Stretches of golden sand, formerly empty, now populated, like sprinkles, scattered on the icing of a cake. Plants, bursting through the surface of the earth like some subterranean invasion, forming serried ranks, jostling for space, for light, for the sun. Roses, filling the air with their blowsy petals. Once bare branches, their filigreed patterns printed across the sky, now hidden by banks of leaves that glisten in the rain and shiver in the wind, crowded together, undefined, a smothering mass of vegetation. Spare me this invasion, these intrusions, these ever spreading stains upon my senses. Let me be forever in the space and stillness of winter, where the world is predictable, still, and at peace.
Colette Brennan (Runner-Up):
The butterfly skimmed overhead in clear blue sky. My eyes drifted towards it's flitting wings as it moved overhead before dropping onto a nearby flower. He brought the daisy slowly down my face, my body responded in it's deeply hidden spaces. The heat of my face matched the heat of the afternoon sun. I gazed again, quietly at the beautiful sky, a cloud drifting overhead. I watched as it journeyed across the sky, changing as it went. Slowly I turned into his arms, the start of my own journey under that wonderful summer sky.
Mags Brown (Runner-Up):
The rain battered on the windows and above them, the fledglings struggled to keep dry. Liberated children and their parents donned waterproofs and splashed along the pavements, dodging the spray from passing cars and giggling on their way to one of the two best places to go on a wet, summer day; the cinema or the swimming pool! What was a bit of water, after all? 'The garden could do with it.' 'Everything smells so much fresher.' The rain battered on the windows and the fledglings, struggled to keep dry. The young man took off his coat and wrapped it around his companion, his friend, Thomas, his terrier. After weeks on the street over winter and spring he had hoped summer would bring some reprieve for them both but hopes are paper wishes and the rain battered on the windows of his tent, and the fledglings in the trees above him struggled to keep dry. Summer, morphing into the uninvited, the unwelcome and the unpredictable. But, isn't that life?