Derek Walcott Poetry Prize/Laureate’s House for Sale/Punjabi Poet’s Google Doodle – Poetry News Roundup September 2nd

Our first poetry news round-up of the week takes a look at the debut of the Derek Walcott Poetry Prize. We also have a short story about the former house of a poet laureate that is up for sale, and finally, the Google Doodle celebrating what would have been the 100th Birthday of a Punjabi poet.

Walcott Poetry Prize Debuted

The first annual Derek Walcott Prize for Poetry has been unveiled by Arrowsmith Press, the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre and the Derek Walcott Festival in Port of Spain.

The prize will be awarded to a living poet, not a citizen of the US although green-card holders will be welcome. They will need to have published a full-length book of poetry in the year prior to the competition. In addition to the $1000 prize, the winner will also have a reading of some of their work at the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. Their work will be published by Arrowsmith Press in a limited-edition broadside and there will also be a residency, which will last for a week, in St Lucia at the home of Walcott or in the Port of Spain.

The poetry can be a translation or written in English, and it doesn’t matter where it was published. If the winning entry is a translation, then the prize will be split between the poet and the translator.

The 2019 Walcott Festival has showcased a variety of different exhibits including a selection of storyboards created by the poet, some watercolours and oil paintings and a poetry reading. In September a play written by the Nobel laureate will be opening at the Queen’s Hall.

Derek Walcott’s daughters are delighted with the prize, which they say their father would have been delighted by. He was someone who always remembered the help that he was given in life and firmly believed in paying it forward, helping those at the beginning of their careers. He was the founder of the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, which is located at the University of Boston. It has won many awards over the years.

Walcott, who passed away in 2017, was a poet and a playwright based in St Lucia. In 1992 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Childhood Story Inspiration for Sale

Burton Cottage in Christchurch, a stunning thatched cottage, has gone up for sale. The cottage was once the home of the former Poet Laureate, Robert Southey and is believed to have been the inspiration for the tale of Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

The stunning Grade II listed building, with a rather interesting background, has been placed on the market for just under £1 million, following extensive renovations.

Google Doodle Celebrates Amrita Pritam

Over the weekend, Google Doodle paid tribute to the Punjabi poet Amrita Pritam who published her first collection of poetry when she was just 16 years old.

Her most famous verse lamented the 1947 partition of Pakistan and India, she was considered by many to be the 20th century’s Punjabi poet.

During her lifetime she published 28 novels, she wrote in both Urdu and Hindi.

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