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By: Nanette Popa

Congratulations to Trinity’s own

Lee Stockdale who was awarded first prize in the United Kingdom National Poetry Competition for his poem ‘My Dead Father’s General Store In The Middle of a Desert.’ Lee’s poem was one of more than 17,000 entries from 103 countries.


When asked about this incredible accomplishment, Lee said: “I was sitting at the volunteer desk at Trinity on February 3rd when I got an intriguing email from the Director of the United Kingdom Poetry Society asking me a lot questions about the poem: Did I write it; had it been published since I’d submitted it to the competition; had it won any other prizes; was it a poem that leaned heavily on any other poem in a workshop; did I stand by it. I got a call from her that night: I’d won first prize. I was flabbergasted. They told me I couldn’t tell anyone until the announcement was made public in London March 29th.”


“Serendipitously, our son, Zach, and his British partner, Jeya, and their new baby, had moved the week before from Costa Rica to London. We had already planned to visit them and asked if a visit around March 29th (!) might work for them. As I write this, we are staying in their lovely flat in St. John’s Wood. When we got here I wanted to tell them I’d won, but Gail was firm: ‘No. Don’t.’ It was more fun that they were at the event when it was announced and it was a surprise for them.”


“I am profoundly grateful to Trinity for supporting my poetry, particularly through Scott’s Bible Study, through Amy hosting my reading in January, and through all the ways I'm able to participate in the life of Trinity.”


To read the award winning poem ‘My Dead Father’s General Store In The Middle of a Desert’ please click this link and scroll down to the bolded title.


Do you have something wonderful to share? An interesting story? Celebrating a momentous occasion? Please reach out to Nanette by email: nanette@trinityasheville.org to be featured in your own edition of Stories that Matter.

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