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Young Poet;War by Carmelle Howlett;TES Competition;Poem

War, Carmelle Howlett

Sadly, poems about war are always topical. Carmelle Howlett uses personification and repeated sentence pattern to strong effect. She has imaginative ideas, making war sound a formidable opponent indeed, with his hair "of twisted barbed wire", his "robe of malicious thoughts", teeth "of red hot flint", and children who "are bullets whizzing through the air". Carmelle ends with a hopeful message for the world. Once again, I am sure this poem could be an inspiration to other young writers.

Moniza Alvi, this term's guest poet, was born in Pakistan and brought up in Hertfordshire. She has published two collections, "The Country at My Shoulder" and "A Bowl of Warm Air".


War's face is a picture of destruction,

His hair is made of twisted barbed wire,

He wears a robe of malicious thoughts,

He devours those who have done nothing to him,

His teeth are made of red hot flint,

His breath is filled with the scent of dying soldiers,

He nestles in the back of cruel people's minds,

He sleeps in the darkest depths of hell,

His dreams are of dying people,

His children are the bullets whizzing through the air,

He wants to dominate the world,

His enemies are peace, kindness and love,

For they will someday rule the world.


Carmelle Howlett, 11, receives 'Why is the Sky?' edited by John Agard (Faber). Submitted by Donna Wenden and Alan Jacobs of Spring Meadow county primary school, Essex,who receive a set of Poetry Society posters with teacher's notes. Please send students' poems to The TES, Admiral House, 66-68 East Smithfield, London E1 9XY

Young Poet Carmelle Howlett

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