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Competition 2014 OPEN

Poem of the Month:
Mar 14

Listen to Gill McEvoy’s poem Glass Bird in a Shop Window (read by Anne Stewart)

Dilys Wood at Brittle Star

see Dilys’s Guest Blog on Ambitious Women Poets

Spring Festival & Holland House FULLY BOOKED

poetry Issue 11 is out!

Issue 13 guidelines

Competition 2013 RESULTS



ACE GftA logo

          Arts Council England


Second Light Long and Short Poetry Competition for Women: NOW OPEN see details

Need help with travel to Second Light events? See Second Light Mary MacRae ‘Access to Poetry’ Fund


Forthcoming anthology from Second Light, due October 2014. Deadline for submissions has passed. Selection is in progress – more about the anthology here
info on our 2006 major anthology of womens’s poetry: Images of Women


Poem of the Month

Round 7, Month 7… Hylda Sims was our volunteer judge this month. She has selected Vivienne Blake’s Birdwatching as her winning poem. Her four commended poets are: Dorothy Baird, Maggie Butt, Alwyn Marriage and Joolz Sparkes.


Sweet and sour aurora chorus:
unwilling slugabed sleepers
wake up.
Earlybird seekers of breakfast
hopping and pecking here and there.
A flypast of oystercatchers,
Red Arrows, veiled in black and white
A swimpast of mallard parents
with a ribambelle of fluffballs.
Too cute.
The mugging by high-handed gulls
of an innocent ham sandwich.
A crime.
A patient hovercraft kestrel
aloft and quivering to plunge.
Snatched shrew.
Formation dancing by starlings
glimmering across the twilit stage.
A soggy stiff-jointed stillness
of a witness, longing for tea
goes home.
     note: Ribambelle is a French word for a string of something, usually children.

Vivienne Blake

Judge’s comment:
Vivienne Blake’s Birdwatching is a succinct description of birds of different feathers, skills and predatory habits with a nod to similar human parades and carry-ons. There’s humour, affection, and clarity. A well-crafted structure of three-line stanzas, each with its brief third line, give rhythm and shape. The last stanza, contrasting these fluent flocks with the watcher – damp, stiff and needing tea – made this poem the winner for me.

Hylda Sims

Wondering about God, by Dorothy Baird
Lipstick, by Maggie Butt
La Matelote, by Alwyn Marriage
Gloucester Reimagined, by Joolz Sparkes