Covid-19 poem wins first prize

Ann Scarborough Moore of Kenilworth.

A Kenilworth poet has won first prize in a poetry competition with a work she penned on Covid-19.

Ann Scarborough Moore’s poem, Harvest, was born in response to a request on the Avbob funeral company’s Facebook page.

Poets were asked to submit works that would give hope and comfort.

The competition was one of several small ones leading up to 2020 Avbob Poetry Competition in August.

“In many of the entries,” the company said, “the virus found incarnation as a ravaging beast, devouring lives in its wake.

“For some poets, the virus prefigured an apocalyptic end of days. But the three winning poems were personal and nuanced, detailing a revival of faith and fruitfulness, a recovery of agency and levity and a dizzying sense of freedom to come, and a refusal to succumb to despair.”

Ms Moore, a freelance fine artist and graphic designer, is married and a mother of three adult children. She has spent lockdown turning her kitchen into a “chaotic soup kitchen”, churning out 20 litres of soup a day with the help of her family, to feed those in need.

“Nothing comforts like a bowl of nourishing soup and a poem brimful of hope,” said Ms Moore.

“I entered this competition because we are living in a time of unprecedented fear, unsettled hearts and uncertainty about the future, and I felt that if I could contribute towards reassuring just one person, and bring them comfort through my poetry, it was my desire to do so.”

Harvest

by Ann Scarborough Moore

In time, your naked fingers

laying mask and gloves aside,

Will plant a new beginning

in the ashes of your life,

With dreams that slip the
darkness

To press against the sun

spirit fruits in embryo –

An odyssey begun

in trust, which only children

and nature can attain,

Until the apples ripen

and you believe again.