Tag Archives: Magpie Award

Announcing the Winners of the 2019 Magpie Award for Poetry

The scent drifting from our window sill must have let you know the pies are done … and the results are finally in.  We have a Magpie Award for Poetry to dish out! Contest Judge Renée Sarojini Saklikar mulled it over, sampled each offering, and came to these conclusions:

Kudos to all the entrants for a strong showing in a short-list of 10 poems, each with merit . I enjoyed the intelligence, beauty, wit, and ambition of each of the poems on this year’s short-list. Here are my three top choices.

First Place Winner: ‘A Short History of Space Travel’ by Susan Haldane:

Everything works in this finely wrought poem filled with metaphorical layers, weaving together myth, space, and gorgeous imagery.

The title situates us into a narrative arc, comprised of four specific prose poems whose sentences end in line-breaks timed to please both eye and ear (no easy feat).  We are entranced by the poem’s atmospheric pulse that merges prose with lyricism, and takes us on a journey of parallel, closely observed moments, each one evoking something far larger than the created snap-shot.  “If we are made of stardust, we are made of ashes too.” I couldn’t stop thinking about this poem! I want to meet its maker!

First Runner Up: ‘whiskey breath’ by Jack Waldheim

I loved the audacity of this unabashed ‘country ‘n’ western’ style lyric columnar. A song of heart-break, whiskey, cats, dancing: a whole ecosphere of longing, just made for saying out loud, thanks to precise line-breaks. This poem stayed loose on my tongue, with each line falling into the next.

Second Runner Up: ‘The Last of the Iron Lungs’ by Roxanna Bennett

A most excellent title, enticing us into this long concept poem.  Its metre is a bit like blank verse, with over-flowing four-line stanzas that utilize a wonderful poetic device, the ‘drop down line’.  That movement on the page instills in our eyes a visual space that adds to the overall experience of the poem. (see Dylan Thomas in his poem,Fern Hill’).

The striking thing about this poem was the way the ‘factoids’ of the Greek myth were used to evoke a kind of fable-warning about our current eco-crisis as well as share the story of a speaker with a disability.  

Renée Sarojini Saklikar

You can’t keep the magpie down, much like these winning poets, whose poems are as tenacious and flashy as this contest’s namesake.  See them in all their glory in Issue 24, due out this autumn.  And for those of you who identify with another flashy avian creature, the Hummingbird Flash Fiction Prize is just around the corner, opening May 1st.

About the Judge

Renée Sarojini Saklikar recently completed her term as the first Poet Laureate for the City of Surrey, British Columbia. Her latest book is a BC bestseller: Listening to the Bees (Nightwood Editions, 2018). Renée’s first book, children of air india, (Nightwood Editions, 2013) won the 2014 Canadian Authors Association Award for poetry. Renée co-edited The Revolving City: 51 Poems and the Stories Behind Them (Anvil Press/SFU Public Square, 2015,) a City of Vancouver book award finalist. Renée’s chapbook, After the Battle of Kingsway, the bees, (above/ground press, 2016), was a finalist for the 2017 bpNichol award. Her poetry has been made into musical and visual installations, including the opera, air india [redacted].  Renée was called to the BC Bar as a Barrister and Solicitor, served as a director for youth employment programs in the BC public service, and now teaches law and ethics for Simon Fraser University in addition to teaching creative writing at both SFU and Vancouver Community College. She curates the popular poetry reading series, Lunch Poems at SFU and serves on the boards of Event magazine and The Capilano Review and is a director for the board of the Surrey International Writers Conference.   Renée belongs to the League of Canadian Poets and The Writer’s Union of Canada (TWUC) and is active on the TWUC Equity Committee. She is currently working on an epic-length sci-fi poem, THOT-J-BAP, that appears in journals, anthologies and chapbooks.

The 2019 Magpie Award Shortlist

Let’s cut to the chase; you’ve been waiting to hear about the Magpie Award for Poetry results for a while now! We offer up the shortlist as a means of compensation for the weeks of suspense. Poets are listed alphabetically by last name.

Kelli Allen
Roxanna Bennett
Chelsea Comeau
Susan Ford
Charlene Kwiatkowski
David Ly
Pattie Palmer-Baker
Roger Vickery
John Waldheim
Cara Waterfall

Congratulations to the shortlisted poets, and many thanks to all those who submitted, as well as to our hardworking first judges Emily Osborne and Daniel Cowper!

Now we really hate to do this, but this is a tough field of competitors and the final results are going to be in the oven a bit longer.   We hope to release the names of the winner and runners up of the 2019 Magpie Award for Poetry, as chosen by final judge Renée Saklikar within the next week.  Please be patient as the shortlist bakes to a delicious golden brown!

 

2018 Magpie Award for Poetry Winners

Last week we promised a surprise you would not want to miss, and today’s the day. Of our shortlist, three poems caught Renée Sarojini Saklikar’s eye for the fifth annual Magpie Award for Poetry. Without further delay, here are her picks and comments.

2nd Runner-up – $50 prize

‘My desk’ by Angela Caravan
“An ambitious poem, which needs some attention to line breaks and form. That being said, the language intrigues.  The possibility of what the language is attempting here: admirable.”

First Runner-up – $50 prize

‘All I Need is a Chair, My Red Piano, and’ by Christine Leviczky Riek
“I Enjoyed the dense construction, which leads reader into the world of the poem, telling a story of loss and longing, using repetition of key phrases and a great evocation of a particular time and place.”

Winner – $500 prize

‘Leather wraps both our shoulders, and I will call you my lungs, my falconer, guidepost’ by Kelli Allen
“I read this lovely poem as a sonnet with its fourteen line construction and those interesting, rhymic two line couplets cascading a series of stories in image. Wonderful!”

These poems will appear in Pulp Literature Issue 20, Autumn 2018.  Congratulations to our winners, and a huge thank you to Renée Sarojini Saklikar for serving as this year’s judge. Thank you as well to all our contestants for your participation and suppourt!

 

2018 Magpie Poetry Contest Shortlist

What’s that old magpie nursery rhyme? One for sorrow, two for joy … ten a surprise you won’t want to miss! The Magpie shortlist has been selected by our poetry editorial team Daniel Cowper and Emily Osborne, and we tip our hats to these ten entries.  Names appear in alphabetical order (by last name) and those with multiple entries under consideration are listed more than once.

Kelli Allen
Angela Caravan
Daniela Elza
Rula Jurdi
Charlene Kwiatkowski
Christine Leviczky Riek
Scott-Patrick Mitchell
Cara Waterfall
Cara Waterfall
Sarah Zwickle

Thank you to all who submitted! Renée Sarojini Saklikar‘s picks will be revealed May 15th, so stay tuned for that surprise you won’t want to miss!

Did you miss the deadline for the Bumblebee Flash Fiction Contest this year? Well, we love flash fiction so much, we have two contests! The Hummingbird Flash Fiction Contest opened May 1st and will close June 15th. Early bird entry fee ends May 15th!

 

Magpie Award Judge, Renée Sarojini Saklikar

It is our pleasure to welcome back the final judge for this year’s Magpie Award for Poetry, Surrey BC’s Poet Laureate Renée Sarojini Saklikar.

Renée Sarojini Saklikar, Surrey BC’s inaugural Poet Laureate, writes thecanadaproject, a life-long poem chronicle.  Work from the project appears in journals, anthologies and chapbooks.  Renée’s first book, children of air india, un/authorized exhibits and interjections, (Nightwood Editions, 2013) won the 2014 Canadian Authors Association Award for poetry and was a finalist for the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Award.

Renée is currently a mentor and instructor for Simon Fraser University, and co-founder of the poetry reading series, Lunch Poems at SFU.  With Wayde Compton, Renée co-edited The Revolving City: 51 Poems and the Stories Behind Them (Anvil Press/SFU Public Square, 2015).  She is currently at work on the long poem, “Thot-J-Bap”, excerpts of which can be found in Eleven Eleven, The Capilano Review, DUSIE and The Rusty Toque, as well as in chapbooks published by Nous-Zot and above/ground presses.

We are delighted to have Renée onboard once more as the Magpie Award judge. Thank you, Renée!

The 5th annual Magpie Award for Poetry is open until April 15th.  Contest guidelines and entry form here.

Treasures in the nest: The Magpie Shortlist

Our tireless poetry editor Daniel Cowper has been up late every night for the past weeks, reading and re-reading the wonderful poems that our Magpie gathered this year.  The finalists have been passed onto judge Renée Saklikar and we will announce her findings next week.  In the meantime, here are the shortlisted poets:

Angela Rebrec
Cara Waterfall
Glenn Pape
Leah Komar
Natalie Southworth
Oak Morse
Susan Alexander
Troy Turner
Trudi Benford

Congratulations to all of you, and double congrats to Trudi Benford who has two poems in the running.  Best of luck in the final round!

The Hummingbird Flash Fiction Prize is currently open for entries until June 15th.  To stay abreast of all our contest openings, be sure to sign up for our free monthly newsletter.

Introducing Renée Saklikar, the Magpie Award Judge

It is our pleasure to introduce the judge for this year’s Magpie Award for Poetry, Surrey BC’s Poet Laureate Renée Sarojini Saklikar.

Renée Sarojini Saklikar writes thecanadaproject, a life-long poem chronicle.  Work from the project appears in journals, anthologies and chapbooks.  Renée’s first book, children of air india, un/authorized exhibits and interjections, (Nightwood Editions, 2013) won the 2014 Canadian Authors Association Award for poetry and was a finalist for the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Award.

Renée is currently a mentor and instructor for Simon Fraser University, and co-founder of the poetry reading series, Lunch Poems at SFU.  With Wayde Compton, Renée co-edited The Revolving City: 51 Poems and the Stories Behind Them (Anvil Press/SFU Public Square, 2015).  She is currently at work on the long poem, “Thot-J-Bap”, excerpts of which can be found in Eleven Eleven, The Capilano Review, DUSIE and The Rusty Toque, as well as in chapbooks published by Nous-Zot and above/ground presses.

Renée is the inaugural Poet Laureate for the City of Surrey and the 2017 UBC Okanagan Writer in Residence.  She collects poems about bees.

We are delighted to have Renée onboard as the Magpie Award judge. Thank you, Renée!

The 4th annual Magpie Award for Poetry is open until April 15th.  Contest guidelines  here.

Congratulate Magpie Winner, Nicola Aime!

Magpie Award final judge Diane Tucker has revealed the three gems which will have everyone standing in line to purchase their Issue 12 copy of Pulp Literature (so order it now)!  Our winners spanned the continent, from Newfoundland to California, yet we are secretly pleased that this contest (judged blind) was won by a local Vancouver poet.  And mainly we’re glad because we’ll get to raise a toast to her in person at the book launch!  Without further ado,  Diane’s comments:

All the shortlisted poems contain clever and even beautiful imagery, emotion precisely and originally expressed, and an extraordinary amount of chutzpah. There isn’t a timid piece in the bunch.  But these three, in my opinion, do the work best.

Magpie Award ($500) to Nicola Aime for  “Dumb Love”
Judged by the contest’s own standard –  “a fusion of musicality, imagery, feeling, and thought” – “Dumb Love” is the winner in this group of poems. Every syllable in it serves the music and the rhythm and the story. The poem’s sustained metaphor, or family of metaphors, is never cheesily over-used or descends into mere punning. The poem’s perfect juggle of swooning passion and subtle and sardonic humour makes it a love poem truer than most to actual human love.  I feel it wants to be recited with a resigned smile.  And through all of this it sustains its music.  It is the most seamless of the entries, the most polished and fully-realized piece of work.

First Runner-Up: ($50) Katie Vautour for “Military Survival Training”
This is a dense, stony, jagged poem, longish but laser-focused, patient and cold and terrifying.  It’s a controlled, drawn-out pain, like a night of sleep spent clenching one’s jaw. Waking doesn’t make it better… It’s going to stay lodged in my head and make me think twice before I eat rabbit again.

Second Runner-Up: ($50) Marnie Eldridge for “Man.hunt”
Almost a complete contrast to “Military Survival Training”, “Man.hunt” is a hugely loose, flailing, overflowing tsunami of a poem.  It works as well as it does because its seemingly rambling passages have a fine strong thread running through them… Its chaotic music and gorgeous, determined fierceness sustain the patient reader.

Congratulations again to all our fine poets, and especially to Nicola!

Magpie Top 10 Shortlist!

Congratulations to these wonderful poets for being selected as top picks for our Magpie Prize!  This is an impressive pool of talent, and we are honoured to have such an embarrassment of riches in our contest.  We will unveil the winner on Thursday, so stay tuned!  Our poets, in random order:

Jed Myerssmall magpie
Daniel Aristi
Jude Neale
Marnie Eldridge

Katie Vautour
Elizabeth Armerding

Ada Maria Soto
Susie Taylor
Nicola Aime
Ruth Daniell