Writing Competition Winner (14+)

We are delighted to announce that the winner of Wealden Literary Festival 2018 Writing Competition (14+ category) is Jane Lovell for her exquisite poem Orchards, Greensand Way as chosen by Katherine May, author of The Electricity of Every Living Thing. The theme of the competition was: The World At My Doorstep.

2nd place goes to Katie McMahon and 3rd place to Lindsay Butcher. Copies of the winning entries will be available to read at the Festival this year.

Many thanks to all the wonderful entries we have received!


Orchards, Greensand Way


We meet between converging lines:

branch, twig, leaf, the bulbous fruit,

knuckles of root in ribbled ground


hands that led the plough, that hauled

and dug and cropped, cup and twist,

and gone. Those days like leaves.


Flagged tracks wind in from lanes

conjuring the old ways, trundle and scrape

of wheels through ghosts of trees.


The sun is brighter now, a black macramé

of tubes irrigates the lines; tractors grind

through vineyards on the south slopes.


We spot fox trails, vertical earth below

skylit hedges; from the ridge, every shade

of green laid out across the Weald, sweeping


to the mauve horizon of a wide unhurried sky.

Windfalls scatter the path: Coxes and crabs,

in the hedges, late bramble, damson,


each bite of fruit surprising in its freshness,

its poignancy.