Sunday, 16 August 2015

Winning Writers Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest

Full details of the Winning Writers Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest:

Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest: Insights from the Judge

We welcome back Ellaraine Lockie to judge our 13th annual Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest. We have increased the prize pool to $4,000 and simplified the entry fee to a flat $10 per poem. Each poem may have up to 250 lines (a new limit this year).
The best poem in any style or genre will win the Tom Howard Prize and $1,500. The best poem that rhymes or has a traditional style will win the Margaret Reid Prize and $1,500. 10 Honorable Mentions (any style) will receive $100 each. The winning entries will be published on our website. Submit entries by September 30.
Ellaraine Lockie's eleventh poetry collection, Where the Meadowlark Sings, won the 2014 Encircle Publications Chapbook Contest and was published in early 2015. Other recent work has been awarded the 2013 Women's National Book Association's Poetry Prize, Best Individual Collection from Purple Patch magazine in England for Stroking David's Leg, winner of the San Gabriel Poetry Festival Chapbook Contest for Red for the Funeral, and The Aurorean's Chapbook Spring Pick for Wild as in Familiar. Ellaraine teaches poetry workshops and serves as Poetry Editor for the lifestyles magazine, Lilipoh. Please enjoy her comments on our 2014 winners:
"I'm here to tell you that poetry is alive and well throughout the world! I continued to be deeply moved, educated, and haunted by the poems entered in this year's contest. Truly, the necessity of eliminating so many profoundly excellent poems in order to declare winners was a painful one. I carried the forty-plus finalist poems around for over a month, weighing each daily, before choosing the winners. This year, as in last year, our sponsors graciously added an extra Honorable Mention award when I simply could not leave two particular poems behind and also a Second Place Award in the Traditional Verse Contest.
"This year's competition was unusually challenging to judge because there was no line limit. The poems spanned from spare three-liners to seventy-four-page epics, with many poems in the twenty- and thirty-page range. It seemed like judging different genres against one another; yet a poem is a poem no matter the length. One might think that longer poems would have an advantage, but often I found the opposite to be more accurate. Length doesn't necessarily equal quality, nor does the technique of writing within a particular form; and with extra length there is extra opportunity for flaws.
"I'm proud to present the fourteen winning poems, which range from a single page to fifty-five pages. The winners eloquently address love in its different facets, death, insomnia, guilt, fear, nostalgia, history, slavery, politics, and the lasting effect of art. Some will open your mind and fascinate you with originality. One will make you laugh out loud (I promise), and one may break your heart. I hope all of them will dazzle you as much as they do me."
The 2014 top winners:
Emile Rose Cole"Allegheny County, 1888: Ava Remembers Her Canaries"
by Emily Rose Cole

Tom Howard Prize for verse in any style
This powerful poetic sharing of a tragic story is told through implication and must be pieced together by the reader, which in turn pulls the reader into the poem in a uniquely personal way. The simplicity of the language allows the reader to share the narrator's grief, its haunting impact echoing long after each reading. The poem is as concise as the images that pierce like arrows through it, illustrating the power of communicating a story of great magnitude on a single page. This poem relies on neither sentimentality nor manipulation and is an extraordinary example of "showing instead of telling".
B.J. Buckley"Insomnia: A Suite in Thirteen Hours"
by B.J. Buckley

Margaret Reid Prize for verse that rhymes or has a traditional style
The narrator of this poem could be the Einstein of insomnia. On first read, she appeared to be a brilliant obsessive-compulsive whose haphazard thoughts flew like bullets into the heart of sleep. If that's all this poem had to offer, it would still compel the reader with phenomenal imagery, metrical rhythm, and sonorous quality of language. However, repeated readings unveil a gradual dissolution of consciousness in carefully constructed commentary that progresses from mathematics to metaphysics. The narrator weaves themes of consciousness, nature, religion, and death into a meditation while capturing the essence of insomnia, a condition to which most of us can relate. The form here is dictated by the poem's content, with its implications of passing time in months and hours that include the witching hour. The meticulous use of twelve and thirteen-lined stanzas, each with corresponding numbers of lines and of syllables in each line provides a most fitting framework for this outstanding poem.
Martin Hill Ortiz"Two Mistakes"
by Martin Hill Ortiz

Runner-Up, Margaret Reid Prize
This is a five-act farcical tale set in US pre-Civil War times and told in fifty-five pages of finely crafted sonnets divided into seven-line stanzas. Akin to Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors, the complicated story is full of trickery, misidentifications, hilarity, and the kind of melodrama one would find in comic opera. The poet doesn't overlook the vernacular of the time, nor poetic devices. Readers will find sustained rhyme and meter over the entire saga—an impressive feat!
Ellaraine Lockie
101 Best Websites for Writers - Writer's Digest

No comments:

Post a Comment