We are excited to announce that Ran Zhao, a Year 12 student from King George V School, was recently selected as a Foyle Young Poet of the Year. The Foyle Young Poets Award is the largest poetry competition for secondary students in the world. Every year, 15 winning poets are selected from over 14,000 entries internationally, and have their poems anthologised by the UK’s Poetry Society. The winning poets are invited to a two week writing course in the UK, where they will work alongside two established poets, with the aim of improving their craft.
Ran joined the competition with some friends and when commenting about her award winning poem, she stated that “I didn’t have any goals with this poem, I just liked frogs and wanted to let out some steam! I’m really honoured the poem was able to resonate with so many people. I really love poetry because you can do whatever you want with it, and I think it’s so important as an outlet of emotion, a way to come to terms with your emotions, by laying them out and examining them. I was also attracted to the competition because of the support and resources it provides the winning candidates, and since I was lucky enough to be recognized, I’m really excited to be able to use the opportunity to improve my writing.”
Read the poem below:
GET UP, WE’RE GOING HOME
who told you to go crouch at the edge of the storm
drain the whole night, feed handfuls of yourself
to the rainwater? you’ve got a cold now, and your
clothes are drenched from last night’s storm, and
i have to climb down there and crawl in the mud
after the bullfrogs, reach into each of their pale
glowing moon-bellies and draw out the little giblets
of your heart. come on, let me dry you off. let me
walk you home in this red rain jacket i brought
when i went looking for you at dawn. next time
you’re on your own, okay? you know the rain
is just water. it has no secrets to give.