Prose Poetry Winners (Top 3)

Prose Poetry: Winners (Top 3)

Top 3 Prose Poems

Congratulations to the winners. All comments below are from our judge, Maya C. Popa.

‘Prose poems have a way of inviting idiosyncrasy, being a hybrid form that relishes in its in-betweenness. The winning three poems all engaged with the non-human worlds in ways that challenged and surprised, feeling at once familiar (a boy and his dog) and strange (lab animals). The animals across these three prose poems serve as metaphorical vehicles towards a chief revelation–disillusioned, even suspicious of human activity. I enjoyed wrestling with their details and particular music.’

3rd place: “Have You Ever Fucked a Turtle” by David Terelinck (Australia)

‘The ending of this poem is particularly powerful and surprising. I appreciated the directness and provocative power of the language.’

2nd place: “The Laughter of Rats” by Helen Pletts (England)

‘So many of the well-chosen details here were haunting (the lit up heads like “hideous Christmas tree hats” in particular). The poem’s shape and tone were equally unsettling and strong.’

1st prize: 1st place: “The Art of Leaning” by Judith Willetts (England)

‘The poet’s quiet, unassuming weaving and paralleling of details here immediately appealed, as did the well-placed stanza/paragraph break. This was one of the most lyrical uses of the prose poem form, preserving many of the gestural qualities of poetry while borrowing the muscularity of narrative prose.’

Ever read your poems out loud? Why not enter our NEW Audio Poetry (4 mins max) judged by Anthony Joseph. Top prize: £1,000. Deadline: 30th June, 2023.