Serena Arthur - young poet laureate 2014 to 2016
Serena was shortlisted in 2013 and submitted this statement for her application in 2014
"I have loved words ever since I was little, delving into novels like they were new worlds to explore, so it wasn’t long before I began to use words to explore my own world … through poetry.
Many young people these days see the word ‘poetry’ and think of boredom, remembering poetry that they disliked at school; they do not realise that poetry is freedom, imagination - it doesn’t even have to have any particular structure, it is whatever you want it to be. Inspiration is all around it just has to be found. They should know that poetry should be written for them - whatever they see or dream should be written down and it might just change something, whether it is the world, the country or simply someone’s opinion.
My confidence has improved in the last few years and with it my poems; I look at my writing in a new light and make slight changes which made a huge difference to the poems as a whole. Being shortlisted last year gave me my first chance to perform my poetry to an audience, however the first-time nerves let me down, so I hope I will get another chance to share my feelings, for I know that poetry is not just about the technique, but also the ideas it stirs, the emotion it evokes.
I hope that by sharing my poetry, I can inspire others to start reading and writing themselves and become the next generation of British poets".