Annie Ellis started writing poetry seriously in January 2014. Annie has read at Cheltenham Poetry Festival, Winchcombe Arts Festival, Evesham Festival of Words and had work published in anthologies such as Cheltenham 300 (Cheltenham Poetry Society), Manuscript, Silent Voices, Poetry Café Anthology and journals including Snakeskin, Dawntreader and wildfire words.
Annie’s first collection, Nature at a Cost, was launched at a Cheltenham Poetry Festival event in February 2021.
Annie is proofreader and usability tester for wildfire words website, and competition administrator for New Voices and Every Breath competitions. She is also part of the team running Cheltenham Poetry Festival.
Following are some of the poems in Nature at a Cost.
Nature – at a Cost
Man-made clouds of steel
drop acid rain,
destroying forest masses,
polluting the air we breathe.
Farmers use pesticides,
killing bees that pollinate.
When they have gone,
there’ll be no food
in four years’ time.
Chimneys shoot out smog,
filled with dangerous gasses,
send a foggy atmosphere,
into rain-torn cities.
A mighty tanker hits a rock,
its belly ripping open,
spilling dark blood,
into a relentless sea.
Icebergs stand mighty,
crash into deep blue,
sinking bears and penguins,
into an unknown world.
The oceans grow a plastic soup,
stifling the gut of those who eat.
It ties them up so they die on the tide
and rot on the rise of the waves.
Your paws dance, leaving a smokey smell,
you don’t need to stalk for prey.
Blazing a lava flow behind your tail,
everywhere you touch scorches the ground.
You roll in the dry grass
sending sparks to ride on the wind,
until out of control they grab at life
turning wood to ash.
Your amber eyes flicker, feeling the rage,
with a roar the wind screams back.
Everything turns black like the stripes
on your golden coat.
It was always the ripples
that came first when you arrived.
Your head bobbing up,
then down you would dive,
your body slip-streaming,
bending and cavorting, paws outstretched
for a certain pebble.
The surface water would break
somewhere down stream,
where I would catch you on your back
tossing the stone,
beckoning me to play.
Your sleek brown pelt glowed
smooth as the water’s skin.
The sun casts diamonds on the water.
You would chase them
into the edge of the river bank
where reeds and bulrushes grew.
Now when I look for patterns
your head never shows.
Ducks bring the movement
of water to me now.