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Pathways to Peace

The Trócaire Poetry Ireland Poetry Competition 2021

Trócaire and Poetry Ireland launched their annual poetry competition on March 15th 2021. The closing date for entries is Friday 7 May 2021.

Our competition is FREE to enter and is open to young people, children and adults alike, at all stages in their writing careers, and there are some great prizes.

Entries can be made online or by post. Full details are also available on Poetry Ireland’s website.

Pathways to Peace

This year the competition explores the theme of conflict; how families who have lost their homes and loved ones to war are rebuilding their lives through love and friendship. Fleeing their homes with nothing but the clothes on their back. Families trek through dangerous territory with no food or water for themselves or their children. When they reach safety, the struggle continues to earn money, grow food and attend school. But with pathways to peace and the support of others, they are able to start new lives based on love, friendship and kindness, and to try and put the pain of war behind them and begin again.

Poets of all ages are encouraged to explore the theme, from a local to global perspective

Categories for entry

The competition is always FREE to enter and is open to young people, children and adults alike, at all stages in their writing careers. Many published poets have participated in the competition, including, in no particular order, Daragh Bradish, Eileen Casey, Joseph Horgan, David Butler, Lorraine Carey, Angela T. Carr, Nicki Griffin, Afric McGlinchey, John Donaghy, Dairena Ní Chinnéide, Ann Joyce, Karen O’Connor, Wilma Kenny, Mary Turley-McGrath, Eleanor Hooker, Jane Clarke, Geraldine Mitchell, David Mohan and Breda Joy.

Poems in English or Irish, written or spoken word, are welcome in all six categories:

ADULT
Published poets
Unpublished poets

POST-PRIMARY SCHOOLS
Junior: 1st-3rd year
Senior: Transition Year-Leaving Certificate

PRIMARY SHOOLS
Junior: 3rd/4th Class
Senior: 5th/6th Class

Competition Calendar

Entries open: Monday 15 March 2021
Deadline for applications: Friday 7 May 2021
Awards Ceremony: Online Awards Ceremony on Culture Night, September 2021

How to Enter

Entries of up to three poems per person can be made online or by post. Full details are available on Poetry Ireland’s website or you can submit your entry here.

You can download the Competition Rules here.

More about the theme of ‘Pathways to Peace’

Exploring the Theme with Primary and Post-Primary Students

Younger poets in primary school can explore our fun educational materials with their teachers, and make the connection between their own experiences and those of children thousands of miles away.
Post primary students can browse our activities and resources to explore the issue of conflict through the SDGs, and can try out our exciting new Pathways to Peace Board Game to experience what it is like to flee your home because of conflict.

Further Reading for Adult Poets

Older students (18+) and adults may prefer to use Awut and Ajak’s stories as a springboard to a wider analysis of the broader issue of the conflict.

How do you feel about conflict and what might drive it in certain countries? What keeps you awake at night when you hear about stories like these? What do YOU think we, humanity, need to do? How should we support communities who have been forced to flee their homes because of conflict? For further inspiration, read more about our Lenten Campaign.

Links to Primary School Resources

View our 2021 Primary Resource – Kindness here.

Download all 2021 Primary resources here.

Links to Post-Primary Resources

View our 2021 Resource – Resilience here, SDG Wheel and photo pack,

Download the 2021 post-primary education resource in pdf format.

Prizes

Each year, the winning poems are published in booklet form and presented to the winners at the awards ceremony. Winners and runners up are invited to read at our online awards ceremony on Culture Night, September 2021. Many past winners have gone on to read at events and festivals around Ireland. Winning poems will be considered for publication by the editor of Poetry Ireland Review. An anthology of some of the best poems from the competition, Future Perfect was published in 2019.

 

ADULT CATEGORIES (PUBLISHED and UNPUBLISHED)

Winners: Two-week stay at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Annaghmakerrig OR a Tablet OR time in a recording studio to the value of €300 (for spoken word poets), plus subscription to Poetry Ireland Review for one year OR assessment of work through Poetry Ireland’s Critical Assessment Service.

Runners-up: Tickets to a literary festival to the value of €250, plus subscription to Poetry Ireland Review for one year OR assessment of work through Poetry Ireland’s Critical Assessment Service.

Highly commended: Book Token, plus subscription to Poetry Ireland Review for one year OR assessment of work through Poetry Ireland’s Critical Assessment Service.

POST-PRIMARY AND PRIMARY CATEGORIES

Winners: Kindle Fire plus visit by an author to your school

Runners-up: Book token plus visit by an author to your school

Highly Commended: Book token

(Note: Prizes must be claimed by 31 December 2021)

You can download the Competition Rules here.

Previous Winning Entries

Booklets of the winning poems from previous years are available to download here:

» 2018: When Love Conquers Fear
» 2017: Before the Storm
» 2016: Forced to Flee: This is our Exodus
» 2015: Feeling the Heat
» 2014: It’s up to us
» 2013: Today’s Children, Tomorrow’s World

For updates about the competition, please visit us on our Facebook page:
www.facebook.com/poetryireland.eigseeireann and www.facebook.com/trocaireireland,
or follow us on Twitter: @PoetryIreland and @trocaire.

 

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