Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2010

War Losses

by Ian Penrose

They stand, cut stone cold
At sharp edges they pass into nothing
And show from marked-out hopeless scraps of ground
An ordered refrain

That shows us our way.
Full flourish red and overshadowed heart
Placed in relief, the barren moved to beauty
And so untimely sympathy renders
Death into duty

Added: 20.04.2010

Judges' comments on this poem


I LOVE the first two lines. In S.2, the imagery is less clear.


Sharp images of war graves and how makes narrator feel, how they should react. Poem is kept tight with strong ending.