Learning more about Poetry and myself

So… I entered a poetry competition. It was quite a distinguised competition in Australia with poets among the elite variety generally taking out the titles. This is not why I entered (obviously).

I entered, simply for the sake of taking the risk to enter. To increase my self confidence and to try and overcome my fears of me, not being good enough in my own eyes, little alone yours. 

I didn’t expect to get anywhere in the competition, but let’s be honest… I can’t deny a daydream or two where my poem was considered for the runners up status. 😜

However, I received notification that out of the 700+ entries, mine was not considered. Which is completely okay. Part of me wanting to enter was to overcome the idea that someone, who I don’t know, who also has a great knowledge or good enough knowledge of poetry to judge a poetry comp, would be reading something I wrote. Now I know this seems very immature or very ‘high school’ of me, but I have been a bit slow off the mark with pursuing this dream (at least trying to build my skills) and unfortunately did leave it all behind in my teen years to chase other dreams; so for me it was a big deal.

The finalists poems will be available next month, which I cannot wait to read. I know from reading last years finalists that they will have used words that are not even in my vocabulary which is something I am also trying to build upon… By the way, any tips on how to do this?

I worked on this poem ⬇️ more than any other and it is probably the longest poem I have written to date. I really tried (within my emerging skills) to convey the emotion behind the story it tells. Please feel free to leave your feedback or comments on what you think, I’d love to hear from you and engage in discussion to improve my writing and poetry skills.


Bec 🤘

‘Waterfall’ – R.J.Richards ©

Splash!The fall was a shock, but not as

Shocking as the temperature of

The water. I didn’t realise

This river would be so cold.


I breach the surface; shaken.

The calm waters wrap me in a solitary

Melancholia as I become enslaved to its current.

To drift alongside these banks;

Without you.


I don’t know where I am going; or

How long this journey will take.

I begin to weep, adding to the rivers

Depths which carry me further into

This unknown flood of despair.


I don’t know how long I have been

Floating like this: days, weeks, months, years.

Time doesn’t seem to exist without you.

I feel hopelessness.


A gentle bubbling noise momentarily

Distracts from my depressive trance.

The sound fades; my drift continues, though faster.

I start to feel anxious; asking,

How I am meant to be without you.


The water starts to get rough now.

There are rocks on the bottom, with

Which I collide as the River picks up speed.

Sloshing my body from side to side, up and down;

As if it is simply a stick adrift in its turbulence.

I almost drown.


I can’t escape the noise now.

I’m wondering where you are; where

Your strong hand is to pull me from this madness.

Thunderous rage; the River is angry now.

Pulling all it entices into its rapids with such strength,

I am forced to keep my head afloat.


I try grabbing on to anything I can grasp;

Rocks, branches, floating debris.

All of this only bruises me in my attempts.

I am not ready to let go of you yet.

I hold faithfully to a log for as long as it lets me

Before the water takes possession and sweeps me under.


I am angry now. I am fighting the River;

Fighting for you; fighting for my life.

Swallowing water; feeling it flood

The anguish, burning in my heart.

I look up to see the Rivers end looming.

I know the only way is down. I must fall.


I start swimming against the rush;

Losing you with each stroke.

I know it’s time to leave this grief;

Reunite with the calm waters below.

My only choice is to accept that you are gone.


The edge is coming nearer. I try once more to

Hold on to the rocks of our dreams; my fingers slip.

The gushing water carries me over the edge,

Defeated; I say a silent sweet goodbye.



The fall was a shock, but not as

Shocking as the realisation of life without you.

I lay floating in the tranquil azure; contemplating,

Looking up to where I fell from your graces.

Reminiscing of floating on a River of tears and fighting rapids;

I still can’t believe that you are no longer

Here to share this dear sweet life.


I swim to the side of the pool and sing you a

Final resolve. I take one last look to the sky and

See a most magnificent waterfall;

And I know now, that I will be able to be;

Without you.

© R.J.Richards 



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