CAOLAS’ summer poetry competition winners announced

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During the summer, CAOLAS held a poetry competition where students from our local schools were challenged to get poetic about our wonderful local marine environment of Loch Sunart or the Sound of Mull. 

We had some amazing entires, so ‘thank you’ to everyone who entered.

A panel of three judges had a very difficult task indeed and first place was awarded to an outstanding poem by Alasdair MacKay, which the judges thought could almost be a traditional song!  All who took part were congratulated for their amazing work, which came at the end of a hard term during lockdown.

FIRST PLACE

Alasdair MacKay – P6 Acharacle Primary

Loch Suaineart
 
An àite is àlainn san t-saoghal,
An-diugh, an-dè s a-màireach,
Toilicheas sa h-uile àite.
 
Loch Suaineart, cho aost ri na bruthaichean,
Ach cho òg ri leanabh,
Dachaigh do cheudan mhìltean bheathach mara,
Bho mheusgan-chaoil gu leumadairean.
 
                                    Craobhan is crodh,                                      
Èisg is fèidh,
Beathach neo lus,
                     Chì thu gu leòr dhuibh.                        
                
A’ sìneadh bho Chille Chomhghain gu Sròn an t-Sìthein,
Sàlean is Gleann Bhorghdail,
Rèiseapol agus Làga,
Bailtean uile,
Air Loch Suaineart.
 
 Loch Suaineart, loch làn beatha,
 Loch de  dh’iasgaran
 A’ seòladh suas is sìos,
A’  glacadh iasg, crùbagan agus ghiomaich.
     
Loch Suaineart, aon latha feargach, eagalach, stoirmeil,
An ath latha cùin, socair, sàmhach,                    
Chan urrainn dhut an aimsir ro-innse,
Air Loch Suaineart.

SECOND PLACE

Erin Rowantree – P6 Acharacle Primary

Loch Sunart
                                                         
As I stand by the shores of Loch Sunart, 
I wonder at the life within,
From the trees on the shore to outside my door, 
It teems with interest for sure,
On the beach every day the otters hunt and play as the sea comes and goes,
As high overhead with eyes golden it said, is the Eagle who makes Sunart his home,
I am not the first to live here and the history is clear
From the shore to the fortress above, 
Picts, Gaels and Danes with their women and weans,
Made their home here from sailing from afar,
Now they are all gone but their influence is strong, 
From the land use and mountain side scar.

JOINT THIRD PLACE

Matilda Van de Peer – P7 Strontian Primary (left) and Maisie Carmichael – P7 Strontian Primary (right)

Loch Sunart
 
I love to swim in Loch Sunart
The green-grey water is always cold
The sea foam laps gently
As I wade out feeling bold
 
I shiver in my wetsuit
As the water rises high
But is feels so nice to be connected
To the water and the sky
Seaweed beach at sunset
Loch Sunart
When the sea is
Wavy choppy
The sea is angry
It splashes against the rock
The current pushes it.
 
When it's still
Not making any waves
Not even little gentle ones
The fish popping up
To say hello
The sea will calm.
 
When it’s a little bit wavy
But not too much
It’s tense,
Maybe something’s not being nice
Under the water
And
Maybe someone has gone for a swim
Discovering a new world.
 
Use your imagination
The sea can be in whatever mood
You want it to be.
Next time you go swimming
In the sea
Dive under to see what you can find, ebony treasure?

Those are the ones selected by the three judges as being the winners of the competition, but several other entries were also of a high standard and we wanted to showcase these to you as well.

Some of the winners in CAOLAS' Summer Poetry Competition 2020 receiving their certificates
Some of the winning and ‘highly commended’ participants in CAOLAS’s Summer Poetry Competition receiving their certificates after they had moved up to Ardnamurchan High School.
Allan MacInnes P6 Acharacle Primary
Loch Suaineart
 
An uisge dubh gorm a’ dòrtadh thairis air na creagan mòr dubh, 
Na leumadairean a’ snàmh anns an uisge, 
Bàtaichean a dol suas agus sios an loch, 
Na h-eòin a’ sgèith suas anns an adhar gorm, 
Iasg anns an uisge a’ lorg biadh, 
Dòbhran a snàmh agus ag ithe na h-èisg
Daoine ag iasgach,
A’ lorg breac mòr, 
Ròin a’ snàmh leis na ‘pups’ aca,
Loch Suaineart.
Ava Roberts (P4) Strontian Primary
'Sea Salt'
 
I feel the breeze of the wind coming from the south. Sometimes I even taste the salt coming from the sea. 
The seagulls squawking for some of our picnic.
I think it’s funny. 
We found some shells but there was one that pinched me. 
My mum said it might be a hermit crab.
She took it off me and put it where I found it.
It was starting to become wet and grey. 
My mum said it was going to be raining for a wee while. 
We have to go home.
I waved goodbye.
I have to go another time. 
Macy Morris (P5) Strontian Primary
'Swimming in the sea'
 
Choppy waves bobbing gently up and down,
Ready to pull you back and forward bobbing around and around,
Splash splish splosh splashing is fun especially with my older sister.
 
YUCK!!!!!!!SEAWEED!!!
 
Jellyfish lying there on the sand, 
they should be banned.
Lying on my back, floating aimlessly up and down side toside 
Gazing at the clouds not a care in the world
EWW
Jellyfish on my toe’s slippy sloppy get out of my way.
I know you can’t sting me, I know you can’t bite me, you can't harm
me at all but you still startle me.
 
Snorkeling along staring at the sea bed,
Seaweed mountains reaching up as high as they can trying to grab me, 
Sorry I’m toofast for you,
I see your shadows on the seabed shielding the crabs trying to stay anonymous, 
Completelyruling your rock anchor.
I can see my lunch sitting on the bottom wrapped in a hardshell and way out of reach, cockles and clams and oysters,
You're safe for today and I will see you again tomorrow!!!!!
Flora Sutherland (P7) Strontian Primary
Loch Sunart
 
White horses galloping around
Listen to the splashing sound
Creatures hidden
Within the blanket of the sea
That the sand pulled up as the tide comes in
As it goes out
Creatures are revealed
Without a doubt
They dart across the sand
Not wanting to be seen
As they creep away from the seagulls who are keen
My feet splashing in the water in
And then it goes out and white horses go to sleep.
Lexie MacDonald (P5) Strontian Primary
Loch Sunart
 
I feel the froth between my toes
I hear seagulls squawking in the clouds
I smell the fishy scent in the air
I taste the salty air
I see the waves crashing on the rocks
I see a seagull take off with my dad’s crocks
I imagine kids playing on the sand
In a far off magical land
Jack Bungey (P7) Strontian Primary
'Sunart’s Seasons'
 
Sunart in summer:
The quiet ducks, gently floating on the reflective surface,
The noisy geese, calling out loud to warn others,
The ice-cold water, freezing when you first stepin,
The rough rocks, painful on your bare feet,
The fresh sea air, calm and clean,
The half-used boot, ancient barnacles and seaweed growing on it, 
The towering mountains, reflected in the light blue sea,
The dying seaweed, the rotting smell assaulting my nose.
 
Sunart in Winter:
The sub-zero water, being whipped into a salty spray, 
The rolling waves, topped with white horses,
The piercing wind, freezing against the body.
Amy Maclennan (P6) Strontian Primary
'Loch Sunart'
I walk down the pier
I jump in the boat
And off we go.
I look out at the loch
Wind in my hair.
We sail out into the sea
The boat stops
I am tipped over
The boat drifts away
I am lost in the loch.
Eilidh MacKay (P4) Acharacle Primary
'The life of Loch Sunart'
     
Loch Sunart,
So peaceful, wonderful and full of life,
Seals peeking their heads up from the water,
What wonderful creatures they are!
 
Herons and Geese flying overhead,
Graceful and so happy,
Sunsets sparkling on the flat surface of the loch,
Just like a mirror.
 
Sometimes big heavy winds and storms come,                           
Suddenly Loch Sunart isn’t very peaceful and flat,
Big white horse waves come and smash on the rocks,                           
All the birds try to take cover.
 
After the storms and gales everything opens up again,
Birds fly happily with their little ones,
Otters play in the loch, 
And explore the rocks.                        
     
 Beneath the sea there is lots of life,
 Fish swim with their friends,
 Crabs wandering by the rocks, looking for food,
 Everything so quiet - Loch Sunart.

We hope you’ll agree that these are all wonderful entries from across the region all of which describe the wonders of Loch Sunart from their own unique perspective. Thanks to everyone who entered and we hope you have received your prizes.

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