A huge congratulations to former First Story Writer-in-Residence Kate Clanchy, who has been shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Prize for New Work in Poetry 2015.
Kate has been shortlisted for We are Writing a Poem about Home, a collaborative radio poem created for National Poetry Day and broadcast on BBC Radio 3. Kate worked with students from Oxford Spires Academy – who have 54 languages between them – to create a radio poem about home: the homes and home countries they came from, and the new homes they have found, and the home they are making in their school and in their writing.
Kate has been Writer-in-Residence at Oxford Spires Academy since 2008, inspiring her students to go on to win a host of competitions including the Foyle Young Poets Awards, The Betjeman Prize and Young Romantics Prize.
Below you can find out more about the shortlisted pieces Kate created with the students and you can find out more about all the shortlisted pieces for this year’s Ted Hughes Prize on The Poetry Society’s website here.
I am so delighted to have this shortlisting. The radio programme was a joy to make because it brought together seven years of writing at Oxford Spires Academy in what felt like a very natural, easy way; and a joy to hear because it framed all the student’s diverse voices so well. I keep telling the students that their poems are excellent not just as schoolkids’ work, but for a wider audience, and that their school, where there is no majority culture and where so many nationalities are brought together in a humane and loving community, is a very special place in the wider world, too. They don’t always believe me, but maybe the shortlisting will help. It definitely helps me, and encourages me in my work.Kate Clanchy