She breathed the room alight,
Potential burning bright.
Her steaming mind of might
Saw a future taking flight.
Peers of Potential’s past
Watched cadets raise the mast.
And so a journey they thought would last
Showed no signal of ‘Avast’.
Victory was her taking,
O’ the history she’d be making.
But cruel Fate had been faking,
And soon Potential’s heart was breaking.
She went as far as Fate allowed her.
Flames extinguished blessed power.
And so Fate and The Man did cower
As Potential died up in the tower.
This poem is a tribute to Firdaws Kedir, the 12-year-old who was awarded the winning ‘Debate Mate’ prize by Bill Gates, before dying in Grenfell Tower months later.