East Coker Poetry Competition 2019

The Poetic Highway Code

Anyone who has attended a meeting of the East Coker Poetry Group, or who has sent in an entry to one of our previous competitions, is eligible to take part.  
Our theme this year is ‘The Poetic Highway Code’ and can be interpreted in any way you wish.   For example, the inspiration could be anything from a particular journey, to the lights, signs or yellow lines that ‘decorate’ our roads  – the choice is yours.

This year, I hope each entry will consist of two poems – a very short poem such as a Haiku or Limerick and a second poem which can be whatever length or style you like.

It would be good if at least one of the two poems could link in some way with a particular road sign, but this is not obligatory.

Entry is free and the prizes (as always) will be priceless !

The deadline for entries is 1st October 2019


East Coker Poetry Competition 2018

Launched at our May meeting the Competition theme this year was 'colours'

There were three equal winners announced at the competition meeting on 30th October by our Judge, artist Jenny Cuthbert :-


Chris Salberg with On the Madonna and Child by Bernardo Daddi, 1348

Diane Summer with The Art of Man

Ama Bolton with Yellow Ochre


Here are the winning entries:-


On the Madonna and Child by Bernardo Daddi, 1348 

Study this Madonna
with the Christ-child in her 
arms — he in mourning white 
with gold and, baby-like, 
eyes on her. It is she 
who commands, a lady 
cloaked in the deepest blue, 
virginal, holy hue — 
a blue from beyond where 
the sea meets the sky. There 
the sea plunges deepest 
and mountains soar highest. 
She, the heavenly queen, 
royal in ultramarine. 

Chris Salberg


The Art of Man

Burnt Umber
Fired earth
Ancient land
Powder blown
Human hand

Burnt Umber
Pigment ground
Beaten yolk
Pearl earring
Vermeer’s stroke

Burnt Umber
Sombre tone
Shadows cast
Rembrandt ages
Paint to last
For centuries

Burnt Umber
Constant dark
Women weep
Picasso cubes
Conflict deep
Humans cracking

All at War
Crust fracking
Plastic seas
Beyond Our
Burnt Umber marks.


Diane Summer



Yellow Ochre

handprint on the rock

I was here


Ama Bolton