“Conversationally Speaking” – Results

I’m many kinds of pleased to be able to announce that the awesome Nigel Kent and Sarah Thomson have finished their deliberations and that I can now announce the results of our ‘Conversationally Speaking’ Competition. If you remember, the idea is that we would look for a conversation in verse where two poets choose a topic and collaborate to produce a body of work where each poem is a response to the one before.

Sarah and Nigel have already produced two Conversations for Hedgehog which have been published already and I was delighted when they agreed to bring their unique knowledge to the idea to the judging and I would like to thank them both for the hard work and time they have put into the process.

Judges Report:
“We must say we were in awe of the stamina, effort and vigour which informed each of the submissions. Every entry was clearly the product of a significant investment of time and we enjoyed reading the variety of approaches and subjects. There were some stunning individual poems and we commend every collaborative pair who submitted and hope that whilst your submission may not have made the short-list, you will have found the process rewarding.

We looked for a collection that demonstrated evenness in quality, each poem, needing to demonstrate originality, inventiveness and accomplishment in both style and form. In addition, the collection needed to have a coherent call-response structure: we looked at how each poem related to the poems that preceded and followed it. The winner, Dawn Gorman & Rosie Jackson’s ‘Aloneness is a many-headed bird’ impressed us because it not only fulfilled all these criteria but it also immediately drew the reader into the conversation between the two poets on both an intellectual and an emotional level and sustained attention from start to finish. It was a very impressive piece of work!”

Nigel Kent & Sarah Thomson
July 2019

The full results are:

Winners: Dawn Gorman & Rosie Jackson ‘Aloneness is a many-headed bird’

Runner up: Rae Howells and Jean James ‘Bloom and Bones’

Both Dawn and Rosie and Rae and Jean have been invited to have their Conversations published by the Hedgehog Poetry Press.

Highly Commended:

  1. Zoë Sîobhan Howarth-Lowe & Diana Devlin ‘Dancing with Ghosts’
  2. Hugh McMillan and Jane Frank ‘A Kist and a Field of Stars’
  3. Maureen Cullen and Patricia M Osborne ‘Sherry and Sparkly’
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