Today on My Poetic Side we look at how you can pay for coffee with poetry. We also have an article about the winner of the Kingsley Tufts Award, and finally, we take a quick look at this year’s Brighton Festival.
Poetry for Coffee
It has been almost a year and once again World Poetry Day is almost upon us. On 21st March, for the sixth year running, the coffee producer Julius Meinl will be celebrating by giving away free coffee. “Pay With a Poem” will give customers the change to pay for their morning poetry by handing a poem, or a song to a member of staff when ordering their coffee.
The event will be taking place at all 250 of the Croatian cafes owned by the brand and in over 30 countries around the world where branches of the Julius Meinl café can be found.
Prestigious Literary Award for Coffee House Press Poet
This year’s winner of the most prestigious, and lucrative, prize awarded for poetry in the US is the poet Dawn Lundy Martin. Martin is the winner of the Kingsley Tufts Award. The prize has an honorarium of $100,000 for the poet’s collection “Good Stock Strange Blood”. The book has been published by Coffee House Press who are based in Minneapolis.
In November Coffee House won their first huge prize with Justin Phillip Reed’s “Indecency” which was given a National Book Award. Indecency was also a finalist for the Kate Tufts Award this year; this is a prize that runs alongside the Kingsley Tuft Award. It is awarded to an emerging poet and has a prize of $10,000.
Martin is the winner of the 27th Kingsley Tuft Award. The prize was established by Kate Tufts in 1992 in memory of her late husband. Previous winners of the prize include Patricia Smith and Ross Gay.
Martin is a professor of English based at the University of Pittsburgh. She is also the co-founder and director of the centre for African American Poetics and Poetry and has also written three other poetry collections.
Brighton Festival 2019
The Peacock Poetry Prize, which is aimed at young people, will be returning to the Brighton Festival this year. The competition is aimed at encouraging young people from across the region to explore the written word. The theme this year has been chosen by the guest director of the festival Rokia Traore and is “Journeys”.
The competition is open to youngsters from the areas of Brighton & Hove and East and West Sussex who are aged between 8 and 19 years. The poems must be no longer than 20 lines.
The winners will be announced at the Brighton Dome on 23rd May.
Each of the entries will be assessed by a panel of judges who will be looking to see what has been made of the theme. Journeys could be abstract or literal, they could be a reflection on a favourite stroll or perhaps a discussion about the distance between reality and dreams.
The prize is being sponsored by the Brighton Hove & Sussex Sixth Form College.