Bright Emma Arbuckle (21) pens moving poem for Grandfather

?Star poet? Emma Arbuckle is joined by the judging panel of the inaugural Funeral Services Northern Ireland National Poetry Competition.  Themed around stars, Emma?s poem addresses the death of her grandfather.  (l-r) BBC Arts Extra presenter Marie Louise Muir, QUB Seamus Heaney Centre's Paul Maddern, Emma Arbuckle, Beverley Brown, General Manager of Funeral Services Northern Ireland, Patsy Horton of Blackstaff Press/Publishing NI and Sammy Douglas MLA who hosted the event.

?Star poet? Emma Arbuckle is joined by the judging panel of the inaugural Funeral Services Northern Ireland National Poetry Competition. Themed around stars, Emma?s poem addresses the death of her grandfather. (l-r) BBC Arts Extra presenter Marie Louise Muir, QUB Seamus Heaney Centre's Paul Maddern, Emma Arbuckle, Beverley Brown, General Manager of Funeral Services Northern Ireland, Patsy Horton of Blackstaff Press/Publishing NI and Sammy Douglas MLA who hosted the event.

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A 21 years-old Derry woman has named as a finalist in the inaugural Funeral Services Northern Ireland National Poetry Competition.

A 21 years-old Derry woman has named as a finalist in the inaugural Funeral Services Northern Ireland National Poetry Competition.

Emma Arbuckle wrote the poem ‘Bright’ following the death of her grandfather this Summer.

Launched to coincide with National Poetry Day, entrants were asked to provide eulogy poems themed on stars, honouring those who have passed on and now watch over them.

At a reception to recognise finalists from across Northern Ireland at Parliament Buildings, Stormont, BeverBrown, General Manager, Funeral Services Northern Ireland, said: “Caring is at the heart of what we do and we decided to launch the Funeral Services Northern Ireland National Poetry Competition to give a voice to those within our community who wanted to celebrate the lives of people they care about.

“The judges had an unenviable task of choosing the winner due to the strength of talent and emotion which we were presented with from the exceptional standard of entries received.”

The winner of the competition was awarded a total prize of £350 – Stephen Sexton from Co Down.

EMMA ARBUCKLE, DERRY

Bright

You lie in a room

with the mirrors covered,

the clocks stopped and

the blinds closed.

Yet somehow

it is bright.

It’s you I think

this brightness in the air

And children are cradled

but children play

because children

are children

even on this day.

They kiss your head

to banish their nightmares

but I grasp your hand

I grasp.

And the trees

in the graveyard

don’t cast a shadow

as you are lowered.

Because you take no darkness

with you.

All we believe of death

is darkness.

But all I see

is the light

that you left behind.