the Poetry kit

ISSN 1468-3075
Managing Editor Jim Bennett





February 2020



1 - Editors Notes

2 - Special events this month

3 - Competitions closing soon

 4 - Calls for Submissions

5 - Poetry Courses

 6- Writers Services





Submitting information to The Poetry Kit

To enable the contents and usefulness of the Poetry Kit Newsletter to grow we put it out as an attachment.  It will still arrive every month in an email but the bulk of the newsletter itself will be in the attachment.  To submit information for inclusion in any area of The Poetry Kit including the Newsletter please see submission details at


Poetry Kit Three Week Online short Courses
A few places still available
Writing Ekphrastic Poetry 3rd to 24th February 2020
The aim of this course is to look at the different approaches that can be taken to bring new insights to poems that engage with a piece of visual art.  During the course poets will be asked to respond to a series of paintings using a variety of techniques. Poems will be workshopped and full feedback given.
At the end of the course there will be opportunities to publish the poems written.  The cost of this course is £30.
Book early as places are limited. To book pay the fee below and we will be in touch within 24 hrs.

we will contact the email you pay with unless told otherwise.





(1925 - 2019)




There is a full listing of regularly held events and festivals from around the world at the Poetry kit website.-


Regular Open Mic Events in the UK

Manchester 21st February 2020

Manchester Poets

Friday 21 February 2020

7.45 to 9:30 [doors open 7.30]

Chorlton Library Manchester Rd, Chorlton M21 9PN
floor poets • All welcome £3 / £1
Guest poet: Peter Street with his new book Earth Talk (Caparison)
Caparison is pleased to announce the publication of Earth Talk by Peter Street, a timely collection of highly idiosyncratic eco-poetry...
In the age of Greta Thunberg and Extinction Rebellion, Peter Street once more takes his place as veritable poet of the trees and flowers, giving them radical voice at this time of climate emergency. Melting ice-caps merge with the iceberg sensibility of Hemingway in Street’s economical style, a strange meeting of ee cummings, W.H. Davies and Edward Lear. In these humorous, polemical and imaginative poems we are privy to jingoistic exchanges in a Parliament of Flowers, and the covert operations of plotting beetles. Street’s gift for personifying flora and insecta is no mere accident, it’s cultivated from an arborist’s sensibility, and beneath its whimsical surface is something deeply empathic, polemical and subversive. In Earth Talk the earth fights back against the aggregate damage done to it by the human animal, and Street gives us unique insight into the bud and bug agitators of his native Wigan...

Chiswick 25th February 2020

Tue 25 Feb 2020, 7.30 pm: A Whole Day�s Dreaming: Yeats, the Thames, and Poetry

Host: Chiswick Pier Trust
Lecture by:
Cahal Dallat with Yeats readings by Anne-Marie Fyfe

The Thames has long had a magnetic attraction for writers and artists but for Nobel-Prize-winning poet WB Yeats, growing up in nearby Bedford Park, the riverbanks between Chiswick Pier & Hammersmith were a vital resource: both a place to meet influential and inspirational people, and the source of one of the world�s best-loved poems of longing, The Lake Isle of Innisfree.

Shropshire 9th-14th March 2020

Creative Writing Retreat, Walcot Hall Shropshire. 9-14 March, 2020. Guest reader: Carol Ann Duffy. Everyone welcome. 

Full details are available here:






15th February 2020 1st publication

entry  £10

Cheltenham Poetry Festival First Pamphlet Competition

An international competition for poets not yet published in book form. Each entrant can submit up to 10 poems which the judges consider as forming the heart of the poet's first pamphlet. 

The 2020 competition offers two prizes of publication of a 32-page pamphlet for poets who have not previously had a poetry collection published. Each winner will receive 50 free copies of their pamphlet, marketing support, plus a headline poet reading at the Cheltenham Festival. The two winning pamphlets will be published by Frosted Fire, the publishing arm of the festival.

Every entry will be read anonymously. Judges are  Angela France, David Clarke, and 2019 Frosted Fire Firsts competition winner Janet Lees.


17th February 2020 1st Publication

entry £25

The Straid Collection Awards 2020

The Straid Collection Award is a publishing award which leads to the publication of up to two new Straid Collections by Templar Poetry following each submission window. The award was founded in 2011.

The Straid Collection Award is open for consideration of submissions of complete manuscripts of full collections of poetry written in English.

There are two Straid Collection Awards available which include publication of the collections, author support and promotion following publication by Templar Poetry. 

Straid Award winning poet or poets will be offered the standard Templar Poetry Publishing Agreement. Straid Award poets will be offered launch readings.

Printed or digital manuscripts will be considered. 

28th February 2020 1st £1000

entry £5

Acumen International Poetry Competition


FIRST PRIZE: £1,000, plus five years subscription to Acumen
SECOND PRIZE: £400, plus three years subscription to Acumen
THIRD PRIZE: £200, plus two years subscription to Acumen
SPECIAL PRIZE for best current subscriber’s entry: £100

Additionally six highly-commended poets will receive £25 plus a subscription to Acumen and ten commended poets will receive a year’s subscription to Acumen.

£5.00 per poem or 5 poems for £20.
Current subscribers can enter one extra poem free (including those subscribing with the entry).

Closing Date: Saturday 28th February 2020


29th February 2020 1st pamphlet
1st  single poem £75

entry £5 - £20

The Brian Dempsey Memorial Competition 2020

Adjudicator: Paul McGrane will select winners from the shortlist provided by Janice and Dónall Dempsey.


The Pamphlet Prize – for entries of 10 poems
The winner of this prize will be offered publication of a 36 page pamphlet of their poems including 20 copies, and £100 cash.

The single poem category – Entries of 1 to 9 poems
First prize: £75
Second prize: £50
Third prize: £25

All shortlisted poets will receive a copy of the competition anthology.

Entries by email only, fees paid via Paypal from the competition site. 


29th February 2020 1st Camera

entry  free

World Children's Haiku Contest 2019-2020

With the Japan Rugby World Cup and Tokyo Olympics, 2019-2020 is an important period for Japan and sport. So, you may be inspired to do more physical activity: do you like team or individual sports? Dancing in your bedroom? Or simply walking outdoors in nature? This year the Japan Society are looking for haiku that express the feeling as you score a goal or lose a game, jump up high or tumble on the ground, run through grass or conquer a mountain! Any theme that is connected to 'Sports' is eligible for this competition.

First Prize for 3 students: Canon digital camera. Other prizes will also be awarded.

The first Haiku Contest was organised by the JAL Foundation in 1990 and one has been held every two years since then. Japan Airlines, with support and assistance from the Japan Society, is pleased to announce the 2019-2020 Contest.


29th February 2020 1st £200

entry £3

Wild Poem Competition from Cheltenham Poetry Festival

Entries should be inspired by April 2020 Cheltenham Poetry Festival theme – wild!

Your poem(s) on the theme can be as unruly and untamed as you like, whether in content or poetic form. The only restriction is that the poem must be no more than 70 lines.

Online entries only. All will be judged anonymously by Guest Judge Ben Ray and Festival Founding Director Anna Saunders. 

First prize £200, second £75 and third £25. 

Sponsored by Badlands Records, The Suffolk Anthology, and Frosted Fire.


28th February 2020 1st $100

entry $

2020 ART COUTURE Ekphrastic Poetry Contest! The contest is made possible in collaboration with the Cornell Art Museum at Old School Square in Delray Beach. The ART COUTURE Exhibition explores the complex influences and effects of fashion and design in works of contemporary art.

Poets may submit a single original poem up to 30 lines inspired by one of eight selected images:

Athena Shoe /Pall Mall/ McQueen by Rick Lazes; Marilyn En Bleu by Sylvester Gauvrit; Pink Suit by Timo Weiland; Adhesif by Caroline Dechamby (see image above); Dorian Gray by Sonya Sanchez Arias; Expensive Taste by Becky Rosa; Meghan by Rick Lazes; and Air Jordan, Study 2 by Stephen Wilson. All of these images can be found by clicking on the following link:

The winning poet will receive a $100 prize, and $25 will be awarded to each of four runners-up. Five Honorable Mention poems will be selected. Entries that win cash prizes will be published in South Florida Poetry Journal, May 2020. Prize-winning poems, along with those receiving honorable mention, will be published online and announced in press releases. 

Ekphrastic Poems may include literal descriptions of a work of art, the poet´s mood in response to a work of art, metaphorical associations inspired by a work of art, or personal memories about a work of art. 

Deadline to submit is February 28, 2020, using Submittable
29th February 2020 1st  Publication

entry £25

Hedgehog Press White Label First Collection Pamphlet Competition

This is the 4th in the series of White Label Collection Competitions, searching for 3 poets who will see their first collection published in pamphlet form by the Hedgehog Poetry Press.

White Label collections are a series that intend to provide a home to poets for their first collections. There is no age limit or profile for these.

Additionally, there are no restrictions if you have previously self-published a collection, you are still invited to enter.

So whether you are 17 or 70, have just come to poetry or are returning to it after living a life, your entries are wanted!

Each winner will be published by The Hedgehog Poetry Press and receive 100 copies of their collection.

The competition will be judged by Mark Davidson, Editor of The Hedgehog Poetry Press.


29th February 2020 1st Publication

entry £17

Geoff Stevens Memorial Poetry Prize 2020

The Geoff Stevens Memorial Poetry Prize 2020 is now open for submissions.

Two winners will have a 52-page poetry collection published by  Indigo Dreams Publishing and receive 20 copies.

2nd March 2020 1st £1000

entry £7

Artlyst Art to Poetry Award

Artlyst, in association with The Poetry Society, is pleased to launch a new international award for poetry based on works of art. 

From ancient times poets have been inspired by art. Ekphrastic poetry has given us some of the most celebrated poems in the English language from Keats’ ‘Ode on a Grecian Urn’, to WH Auden’s ‘Musée des Beaux-Arts’, based on Brueghel’s famous painting of Icarus falling from the sky. In each case, what has been created is not a mere description but a fresh insight, a new world, an autonomous work of art.

The Artlyst Art to Poetry Award celebrating ekphrastic poetry is open to all poets worldwide aged 18 or over. Entrants may submit as many poems as they wish so long as they are based on an artwork. This can be in the form of a painting, sculpture installation, video, or fine art photograph.

The competition’s judging panel will include poet, novelist, and art critic Sue Hubbard, and judges from Artlyst and The Poetry Society. There are awards of £1,000, £300 and three runners-up prizes of £50.  All winners will be invited to an awards ceremony at a London art gallery and be published on Artlyst and The Poetry Society websites.


7th March 2020 1st £500

entry £3

Enfield Poets’ Competition adjudicator Ruth Padel.  Prize giving will be in the Dugdale theatre, Enfield on Saturday 25th April at 7.30. First Prize £500, second £250, third £100. Winners and runners up will be able to read their poem.  Winning poems to be published on the Enfield Poets’ website.

For further details, rules and how to enter go to






Nine Muses Poetry is a webzine edited and managed by Annest Gwilym, poet and occasional short story writer. It features all forms of poetry by new, emerging and established poets, showcasing the best of contemporary poetry.

Now with a monthly challenge.

10t February 2020


Dial-a-Poem celebrates 50 years since John Giorno’s public art project launched in New York City. Giorno’s Dial-a-Poem connected callers to answering machines playing recordings by poets such as Allen Ginsberg, John Cage and Patti Smith. 2020 will see the service re-wired across several platforms. Winning poems will be published and recorded for the Dial-A-Poem app, a renovated K8 phone kiosk in the City of Nottingham and project website. The app will launch at The Science Museum in 2020.

The competition invites students enrolled at a UK institute of higher or further education to enter a poem on the theme of calling. This brief may be interpreted freely – poems can be directly or indirectly ‘telephonic’.

Prizes are awarded in National Book Tokens. First prize is £500, second prize is £300 and third prize is £200. An additional prize of £100 National Book Token will be awarded to a student currently enrolled at Nottingham Trent University.

30th April 2020

The Projectionists Playground.  The autumn equinox has just passed by and it's time for me to send out this call for submissions for issue 11, to appear in June 2020. Texts as A5 pdfs, if possible, and images as greyscale jpegs please. Closing date 30th April 2020.

I look forward to reading your work.

See website for more information  







Poetry Kit Online Poetry Courses

Our students have won or been commended in many poetry competitions including the UK National Poetry Competition, 

have  published collections of poetry, been published in anthologies and magazines, in print and online.  They have appeared on Radio and TV

performed their poetry in schools and libraries. 


New courses start the second and fourth Monday of each month

You need nothing more than an interest in improving as a poet and email or internet access.


Poetry Foundation Course


A course suitable for those looking for an introduction to writing poetry.

The Foundation Course is an introduction to writing poetry.  If want to write and start to understand poetry and to develop the basic skills to help express yourself, then this is for you.  You will learn how poetry can help  you to see things in a different way and gain confidence in writing about them.


More Details For This Course






Poetry Course - Part 1


A course in reading and writing poetry.  For the poets who want to develop their skills.

If you have been writing poetry and feel you want to take it further, then this course will help you to improve and show you new skills and how to get the best from your writing. Learn more about poetic devices, structure, editing and form.  We also look at markets for your poetry and getting published.

More Details For This Course






Poetry Course - Part 2 


A course in advanced writing skills.  To help a skilled poet improve further.


You may have been writing for a while, been published, won competitions, feel you have had some success,  This course with exercises designed to help you recognise your style and voice, will help you to maximise the potential

More Details For This Course






A one to one mentoring service offering detailed support and writing exercises.

One to one mentoring. Ideas are discussed and foundations for poems developed with assistance and critique in working through drafts to completed poems. This is a mentoring experience and will work with strengths and identify weaknesses in writing style, all content will be chosen to meet the needs of the student.


More Details For This Course






A personal critique service.

This is an individual critique service available from Jim Bennett, allowing those using the service to send 10 poems and have them individually critiqued by Jim who is an internationally known, prize-winning poet.  By sending poems over a period of time the participant can use the service to develop their skills and to get feedback on their progress.



More Details For This Course





The Poetry of Bob Dylan


Exploring the lyrics and poetry of Bob Dylan.


We will looking at examples of his writing from periods throughout his career and examining how he uses words to shape the environment of the song.  Dylan regularly broke the rules of lyrical writing and in doing so created a body of work that rewards exploration with techniques and possibilities.




More Details For This Course







Poetry Kit runs a full range of interesting and challenging courses.  In addition to those listed above there are other

courses including  Script writing and The Poetry of Bob Dylan. 

For a more complete listing of courses and availability please see





PLEASE NOTE Poetry Kit does not accept paid advertising or exchange links.  All listed services are listed because we believe they

offer a good reliable service.  There is no charge made or expected for listing at Poetry Kit.



Poetry Kit on-line courses and critique service. For details see





~Good Poems Made Better~

Send 4-book poet Dan Masterson a one-page poem of your own making, and he'll comment on it free of charge. Thereafter you may continue working with him on a fee basis if you wish

 (and receive a $10 discount for those receiving this mail).

See details at  and read his first two books online at



Please direct all news and queries to

The Poetry Kit -


The Poetry Kit - e-mail:

Managing Editor Jim Bennett -

Website -