The Writers Bureau Short Story Competition 2019
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Poetry Competition 2020 - Second Place


Judith Tremaine Drazin

Tea, Toast and Temperance

Outside, the sky a purple bruise,

inside the curtains drawn against the night

and Grandad in his Temperance Meeting suit

dispatched. Polish and firelight

harmonise. Grandma presides, the

toasting fork her trident. Now we

feast in state, each slice ambrosia

energetic with butter. Tea

from the Sunday caddy, the duplicitous

knitting bag unclipped. Don't tell

my handsome comes the whisper,

just a nip of brandy for my heart.

How in the Temperenace Hall they sing

united. Grandad leads the vesper

hymn, my only drink is water bright,

water from the crystal spring.


I am a widow, I wrote radio scripts, mainly Listen With Mother when the children were small, - £8 a story which meant new shoes for someone. Then life and teaching (in a childrens' hospital) intervened and I took up writing poetry as a kind of therapy after my husband's death. I have had several successes in competitions and have amassed several dictionaries. I have two adult children and enchanting twin grandchildren who love creative writing lessons.


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