World Curlew Day 2021 Art & Poetry Competition

Congratulations to our winners. Click each piece of art or poetry to open a larger image

Under 16 Art Competition

1st Place

Aneeshwar Kunchala age 6

2nd Place

Millie age 12

3rd Place

Dimitri Armitage age 15

Over 16 Art Competition

1st Place

Wendy Bramall

2nd Place

Sarah Hannis

3rd Place

Stephanie Smith


Under 16 Poetry Competition

1st Place

Curlew seen at Titchwell

Down-curved beak like an archer’s bow,
Unique amongst the huddle of waders,
Flat grey winter enchanted by your call,
Hope’s lament in quivering ripples,
A sound of the ancient wild, uncopiable, unmakeable,
A sound of captivating beauty,
Mesmerising, strangely lugubrious,
Mournful yet uplifting, echoing mysteriously.

As the World around you changes,
Your once familiar sound is vanishing,
Your population plummeting,
Now teetering on the edge of extinction,
In desperate need of our attention.



by William T Walker, age 13

2nd Place

A bird of the Moors 

Your motion like no other, courageous curlew,
I feel sympathy for you, as humans are responsible for your declined needs,
Dappled feathers camouflage you amongst the reeds,
Sadly your just part of the humans disastrous deeds,
You stand out in the crowd, with your specialised features like wading legs and downward curving bill,
Unfortunately losing 65% of your inhabitance, your numbers are nearly nil,
While humans sit their with their greed and money, we watch your numbers fall,
Sadly becoming rare is your predominant and familiar call,
The habitat we humans have destroyed Is yours, not ours to take
We must work harder to save you, before it’s to late we must awake,
We should admirer your gracefulness as your marshy home is yours,
As your a wader, a bird of the Moors.

by Freya Salter, age 11

3rd Place



by Silvia Bennet, age 6

Over 16 Poetry Competition

1st Place

Lost (after Rabindranath Tagore)

I do not remember the curlew,
but on certain pale winter afternoons
I find the mudflats scattered with footprints,
 like carelessly dropped stars.

I do not remember the curlew,
only a handful of crumpled feathers,
each one a liquid ribbon of mud
set against a faded pink sky:
a cartography of longing.

I do not remember the curlew –
but sometimes, blown in by the tide,
I hear a cry that swoops upwards, like the outline of grief,
the curve of a beak, or a bird – more song than substance –
 soaring again towards the sun.

by Sarah Howden

2nd Place


They would colour the wind 
Paint the bent grass with sound 

Stitching spring from a tune 
To dress the high ground 

Now the scrapes are all empty 
And the moor cannot cry 

All the fell winds are silent 
And who will  ask why? 



by Robin Hargreaves

3rd Place

Curlews (1983 – )

Winding back from Kielder over the Pennine tops
we listened for the curlews at narrow roadside stops

Upon the piercing wind that pinned us to the car
we heard the double-syrinx call – a plaintive from afar

It was not the biting northerly that tore me quite apart
but the sound emitted from the bird that bore into my heart

A major-minor beckoning, diminishingly heard
presents a prescient lament to future missing birds

It echoes down the decades, ululating clear
a warning to those camouflaged, the cutter drawing near

Hope is yet to sprout its feathers, yet to grow a wing
hoping to be spared the blade – this fragile speckled thing

by Paula Knight

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