2011 Keats-Shelley Association Competition – “Glass”

John Keats by William HiltonIt’s that time of year again, when those of us with a yen towards Romantic poetry (Byron & Wordsworth, NOT Mills & Boon) start feverishly pacing up and down the leafless lanes attempting to compose a poem on a Romantic theme for the Keats-Shelley Memorial Association‘s annual International Poetry Competition. Actually it’s two competitions – for a poem of no more than fifty lines on a theme chosen by the judges, and for an essay on any aspect of the work or life of Keats or Shelley. This year’s theme is ‘Glass’, which certainly has lots of possibilities.

Percy Bysshe Shelley by Alfred Clint

Actually this will be the fourth or fifth time I’ve decided to enter. I love the Romantics, I have a natural penchant for things of a Gothic nature (not necessarily helpful, I’ll admit, but it does simply my wardrobe choices) and I find having a theme to write to extremely liberating. Unfortunately I’ve never yet managed to get a poem finished in time for the actual competition – the deadline is June 30th.  I’ve quite possibly left it too late yet again, but here’s hoping.

And in case you’re wondering, it does produce some glorious poems. You can read winning poems on the KSMA website here. My personal favourites are Jane Draycott’s beautiful “The Night Tree” (which was the inspiration behind my own poem, “The Orange Tree”), and Simon Armitage’s winning poem from last year, “The Present” (theme: Ice).

So, no more excuses. Clicking on this link will open a downloadable pdf with the entry conditions. Get out there and write!

5 Replies to “2011 Keats-Shelley Association Competition – “Glass””

  1. Hey! This reminds me I’m still waiting for my class on the Romantics… (remember?)… anyway I love the line ‘the deception of fog’; always reminds me of those nights on the banks of the Waikato river in Hamilton, and the fog, no one knew you were there. Wonderful place to hide.

      1. We (that is my Muse, the first original and only) did not have a place of our own so we spent many hours on the river bank, or underneath the main traffic bridge on the girders (’til the cops banned us from going there).

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