Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2010

Angle Tarn

by Jan Harris

One day I will climb again to Angle Tarn
where we heard the ice stretch-sigh like ghosts from fathoms low.
We carried on to Rossett Pike for the view to Mickleden,
the drumlins drawn in shadow.
Remember the cairn at Stake Pass,
the stones we balanced, side by side,
the promises we placed beneath them?
The road has been lost to me these long few months
for if I walk those once familiar paths
someone with clear blue eyes may wait for me at Dungeon Ghyll Hotel,
someone may take my pack on Langdale Fell,
help me across a beck or stile,
stop a moment to check the map,
tighten a lace, someone may smile and say …
One day I will climb again to Angle Tarn,
when dawn breaks fine and warm
one day.

Added: 11.02.2010

Judges' comments on this poem


Lovely poem -- I find all this fell-walking stuff risks becoming a cliché but this is really good.


Favourite of my 12. I liked its simplicity, the music in the names and the shared moments and small favours left to speak for themselves.


Charming poem that conveys a central message effectively. I don't usually like the fell-walking line of country but this is an exception.


Such a great use of words in this


An evocative and sensitively written short poem nostalgic without being oversentimental.


Wistful yet certainly of the earth.