Many congratulations to Valerie Bloom, winner of this year’s CLiPPA (CLPE Children’s Poetry Award), the UK’s most prestigious award for published poetry for children.
Bloom’s award-winning collection Stars with Flaming Tails, illustrated by Ken Wilson-Max (Otter-Barry Books), was described by Chair of the Judges Philip Gross as ‘a passport to the whole world, and beyond. This is poetry that can go anywhere, from the personal to the planetary, the surreal to the scientific, with its invitation to us all to look, and to laugh, to listen to our feelings, and to think.’
Also on the judging panel were former CLiPPA shortlisted poets Nikita Gill and John Lyons, as well as Becky Swain, Director of the Manchester Poetry Library, and CLPE Learning and Programme Director Charlotte Hacking.
The announcement came at the end of a lively CLiPPA Poetry Show at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, attended by 900 school children and watched by hundreds more via Livestream. Hosted by Michael Rosen and featuring live drawing by Chris Riddell, the show included performances by all five shortlisted poets as well as the young winners of the CLiPPA Shadowing Scheme.
Commenting on the Award and the Poetry Show, Chief Executive at CLPE Louise Johns-Shepherd said, ‘Valerie’s inspiring collection invites children to engage with poetry in so many different ways and speaks beautifully to all realms of human experience. It deserves to be in every book corner and library in the land. After the difficulties of the last two years it has been such a joy to celebrate this amazing shortlist with live audiences … Children’s poetry is such an important but often underrated literary form and we could not be more delighted to be celebrating the very best of poetry for children at the Southbank Centre’s Queen Elizabeth Hall with such an enthusiastic and engaged audience.’
See the the full shortlist for the CLiPPA 2022 here.