Young Oaklands Poets Triumph at Allingham Arts Festival

Oaklands Community College were thrilled to learn of the success of two young writers at the Allingham Arts Festival Writing Competition this week. Both Caoimhe Brewer and Megan Murrin staved of intense competition to make the shortlist and be announced first place winners in their respective categories during the Allingham Arts Festival online awards ceremony.


The girls were among four Oaklands students who had made this year’s shortlists in various categories of the renowned competition for Primary and Secondary school students all over Ireland. Also making the short list were Oliver Keenaghan and Tyler Mulhall Reilly in their respective categories. This was a monumental achievement as outlined during the virtual awards ceremony itself and reflects the high standards of literacy and creativity among the student body at Oaklands Community College.


The Oaklands Community College shortlisted entries were for the First and Second Year Poetry Category “A Girl Of Imperfections” by Caoimhe Brewer and “Dragon Poem” by Ollie Keeneghan, in Third and Transition Year Poetry “A Reason For Snow” by Megan Murrin and in the Fifth and Sixth Year Flash Fiction category, “The Heartbreak of Alessia” by Tyler Mulhall Reilly.


The schools’ competition of the Allingham Arts Festival is kindly sponsored by Donegal ETB.


The award winning poems are to be enjoyed below:


A Reason for Snow

By Megan Murrin

A girl.

She sits on the top of a hill

And lets the clouds cry snow around her.

She is at peace, content with her own will.

She never moves, nothing more than a shiver


A wolf.

It gazes at the figure atop the snow mountain.

It is confused, perplexed, amazed,

At how any creature could withhold

The sharp, deadly threat of the cold.


A glance.

The two make contact.

Only for a second.

Not long, just a moment

But then it’s there- a connection.


A step.

The beginning of many

It advances towards the girl

Expecting a movement, a gesture, something,

To prove that life inhabits the vessel.


A breath.

She knows she doesn’t have much time.

She had to be here though.

Had to see it make the final climb.

Be with it amongst the bitterness and snow.


They meet.

At long last.

It’s all the girl could have wished for.

The wolf perks its head.


“Hello old friend.” The girl whispers.

Nothing more. The quiet returns.


The snow continues to fall.









A girl of Imperfections

By Caoimhe Brewer


I look in the mirror and am shocked at what I see,

a girl of imperfections staring back at me.


I see the girl is troubled, perhaps beyond repair,

and in a world of troubles life has given her a fair share.


She wishes she could look like the other girls she knows,

but for a life of wishing and longing it seems to be her that god chose.


She hopes no one can see all that is skin deep

and that her secret imperfections are secrets she can keep.


As she walks away from the mirror a voice calls to her, “Look underneath, see beneath it all, then you will see your life if you don’t just let yourself fall.”


The girl takes a deep breath and to the mirror she strolls,

and when she looks within, she finds a story never told.


Never trust a mirror, they lie, and they deceive,

they show you that you are imperfect and that is what you believe.


But just take a second, a second to look within,

this battle inside your mind is one that you can win.


You are beautiful both inside and out,

and accepting yourself, well that’s what life is all about.