Secondary schools have excelled themselves in this year's Poems on a Postcard competition to celebrate National Poetry Day on October 9. In a reversal of the usual predominance of primary children, four of the five top places have gone to secondary pupils.
There were more than 600 entries to this year's competition sponsored by the Royal Mail and TES Scotland, with around 60 per cent from secondary schools. Standards were higher than in previous years, said the judges, with better thought put into this year's theme, "Transformations", and a better range of poems coming in.
First prize went to Rick Smith, aged 12, of Kelso High for his poem on "The Weather". This will now be printed on 60,000 postcards and Kelso High will have two days of workshops with Scottish poet Matthew Fitt. Second was Stefan Ebmeier, aged 14, of James Gillespie's High, Edinburgh, for "Transformation", which will also be printed as a postcard.
Runners-up were Anna Wallace, also 14 and from James Gillespie's, with "Altered Mind"; Ross Fleming, aged 18, from Doon Academy with "I Wrote a Love Poem"; and Callum Cowan, aged 10, of Roseburn primary, Edinburgh, with "Morning Madness".