Bristol Poetry Prize 2018 Results


dominic fisher1st Place: Dominic Fisher 

Hardware Visitations (after Allen Ginsberg, A Supermarket in California)

2nd Place: Tom Sastry Underground


3rd Place: Laura Potts Yesterday’s Child


helen ivorysqwebJudge: Helen Ivory

Judge's Statement: It was a pleasure to judge The Bristol Poetry Prize. It is always a big responsibility to judge prizes – especially when you are sole judge. You are frightened that you will miss something so read everything very carefully, alert to the fact that there are so many ways to write a poem. With some, it’s clear from the beginning how the poem is going to end and that the writer knew pretty much what they were going to say when they sat down to write. These poems, I tend to put aside after first reading. With others, there is the excitement of not knowing where the poem is going, and sometimes the added bonus of not knowing how the poem got to where it ended up. There is a kind of poetic sleight-of-hand at work – poet as magician - which made me put these types of poem in my ‘read again’. pile.

(in no particular order)

Abigail Ardelle, Her Future Husband Appears to Her in the Shape of a Hawk

Helen Ivory: A visceral poem which set my imagination on edge.


Nicola Daly, The Fox Wife

Helen Ivory: Another invasion, but this time wilier.


Joanne Key, Changeling

Helen Ivory: Written in sparer language and with a cooler tone than the previous two transformation poems.


Diane Mulholland, Exit Daughter

Helen Ivory: Essentially, I think, about a daughter educating herself and then leaving home.


Tom Sastry, A Man's House Catches Fire

Helen Ivory: Shows to me, just how much you can put up with a situation, which when you're outside of it, might look intolerable.


Sally Davis, 21 grams

Helen Ivory: I loved the language of this poem, and how it talks of the intangible and metaphysical in empirical terms.


Scott Elder, My Hotel

Helen Ivory: A strange little poem I was instantly drawn to.


View the full results and judges comments here

 Bristol Poetry Prize 2018 Results



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