Let the News be your Muse. Send your news-inspired poems to poetry24ed@gmail.com

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Sunday Review... and a question

Jim Bennett brought us back down to earth at the beginning of the week with the Olympic legacy - a perfect antidote to fine talk of inspiring a generation (and it's a generation on the move, says Noel Loftus  in Passport Photo).  And as the world's photographers pack up in London, E R Olsen wonders who else might be under observation in Drone.

But while we all go back to normal life, Fran Hill spared a thought for new lottery winners tossing and turning on That first night, thrashing out "the troubled what to do with it, / how to share, and who, with it". And thrashing in the shallow waters off West Cork, a stranded fin whale inspired Caroline Hurley's moving pantoun: Poor Brother Whale.

We finished the week with A Ballad of Blood from Sutanuka Banerjee - a visceral assault on the senses as riot begets riot in Assam and Mumbai.

A Question:
We have been told off for saying we were short of submissions two weeks ago by a poet who responded but wasn't chosen. Sometimes we have plenty of good poems in hand and competition is stiff. If the pot is getting low, we mention it to prompt poets to get writing news-related poems and generally get a response, which we are grateful for. But there's still a requirement to abide by our submission guidelines and link to a recent news item, and they will still have to compete with other poems sent in.

What do YOU think? Is it better to get a 'heads up' if we're low, or is it annoying because we may still not use your poem? Please answer in comments below.

Have a great week

Clare and Martin


  1. It's your blog, you run it how you want to. I would go for keeping to your submission rules, even if you are getting low, it keeps the playing field level (he said managerially). And the head-ups are good motivational tool for me.

  2. There must be some guidelines. What football team has ever won a cup without a good panel to choose from?
    If I submitted a piece of rubbish, you published it and I saw in the cold light of day that it was poor, I would be annoyed.

  3. I think you should carry on exactly as you are. It's good to get the reminders (although I can't always respond, it does serve as motivation). And if the website doesn't have standards, people will give up on it. What about the odd competition, with the prize being publication, where you decide on the news story that needs writing about, and posting a request for poems on it within 24 hours? You could then post the best one. This might make us sit up and try harder?