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Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Trim Poetry Competition 2020

I will co-judge Trim Poetry Competition again this February. Last year the Boyne Writers Group secretary gave me around 220 poems which I read carefully. All poems were anonymous. As I read I placed work I considered of special merit in a separate pile knowing that I would have to whittle the stack down to 30.

The second part of the process was done with fellow adjudicator Michael Farry. We had chosen very different poems but we did have some choices in common. We discussed these preferences and after some time came up with a shortlist of 10. In the end a couple of poems were in the running for overall winner. This year we will have two runners-up.

10 poems will again be shortlisted and these 10 will be published in Boyne Berries 27. The overall winner will receive €500 and 2 runners-up will receive €100 each. To be shortlisted in a competition is a great honour as I know myself as a poet.

Things that attract me to a poem are a fitting and clever title, correct spelling and grammar, a well crafted poem, formal poetry, lyrical poetry and free verse, poems with emotion, unexpected poems, poems that try to say something different, poems that ache, poems that bleed, poems that try to heal, the voice of the poet, striking use of language, humble language and above all, imagery.

Good luck! I'm looking forward to reading your creations.

To enter there is a fee of €5 per poem or €10 for 3 poems. Entries are by email to 

Further details on how to enter can be found here.