Poetry Contest

Antler River Poetry 2022 Poetry Contest Winning Poems Are Here

We are delighted to publish the winning poems of our 2022 poetry contest judged by Klara du Plessis. Along with the winning poems, we are including the poets’ photos and bios and the judge’s notes.

1st Prize “Mechlorethamine and his temporary absence” – Brian Baker

Read the poem ↓

Brian BakerBrian Baker is a London, Ontario poet who began his writing journey back in the late eighties and is now on his first re-imagining. His work has appeared both in print and online in the States and Canada and he was also the 2020 winner of what is now the Antler River Poetry Contest.

Judge’s Notes

“Mechlorethamine and his temporary absence”: Formally precise and cross-disciplinary in scope, this poem offers a terse exploration of loneliness in a clinical medical institution and cancer ward. Isolation itself becomes a relational form of connection, however, as body, objects, and open space fuse into a site of peace and healing.

2nd Prize “Student Housing” – Tom Prime

Read the poem ↓

Tom Prime

Tom Prime is a PhD candidate in English Literature at Western University. His debut solo collection of poetry Mouthfuls of Space was released by Anvil Press last year and was shortlisted for the 2022 Gerald Lampert Memorial award. His latest collaborative collection, Bird Arsonist, written with Gary Barwin, was released by New Star books earlier this year.

Judge’s Notes

“Student Housing”: A misleadingly simple text that moves along a poetic axis of sound and assonance. Studenthood functions as an enclosure that delimits the speaker’s lived experience, while curiosity perforates constraints, daringly intertextual.

3rd Prize: “They have my voice” – Sana Mufti

Read the poem ↓

Suna MuftiSana Mufti is a creative writer with a double degree in English and Psychology from the University of Toronto and is currently completing her Master’s in English at the University of Western Ontario. Sana strives to explore themes of identity and the philosophy of time and motion. She comments on the personal struggle of defining the self and finding stability in a constantly changing world.

Judge’s Notes

“They have my voice”: A moving, meta-narrative reflection on the act of self-expression through poetry, this poem dramatizes affect (so often the driving force of lyric poetry) to eventually question the ability to create at all.


Announcing Our 2022 Contest Winners Selected by Klara du Plessis!

Antler River Poetry is very pleased to announce the winners of our 2022 Open Theme Poetry Contest judged by Klara du Plessis. A big thank you to Klara for judging and to all poets for submitting their work.

1st Prize: “Mechlorethamine and his temporary absence” – Brian Baker

2nd Prize: “Student Housing” – Tom Prime

3rd Prize: “They have my voice” – Sana Mufti

Congrats Brian, Tom, & Sana!


Antler River Poetry 2022 Open Theme Contest

DEADLINE March 15th, 2022 Extended to March 20th, 2022

Antler River Poetry Contest 2022 - Open Theme - Deadline March 15h 2022 Antler River Poetry Contest 2022

Submit your best work to Antler River Poetry’s 2022 Open Theme poetry contest, judged by acclaimed poet Klara du Plessis! Contest entries must be one poem of no more than 40 lines, on any topic, in any style; only submit original work that has not been previously published in print or online.

Send poems in PDF format by email only to AntlerRiverPoetryContest@gmail.com. Please include your name, your complete contact information (including mailing address) and the title of your poem in the body of the email. Poems will be presented anonymously to our judge. Do not include your name in the PDF file of your poem. You must be a resident of (or attending school in) London, ON and surrounding area to enter. Winners will be announced in mid-April 2022 (only winners will be contacted).

  • First Prize is $100
  • Second Prize is $75
  • Third Prize is $50

The winning poets will have their work published on Antler River Poetry’s website and will be invited to read their winning pieces at an upcoming live Zoom event.


Announcing Poetry London 2021 Poetry Contest Winners

We are delighted to announce the winners of our 2021 Poetry Contest judged by Phil Hall. Big thanks goes to Phil for being the judge and to all contestants for submitting their poetry. Congratulations to the winners!

1st Prize “Third in Line” – Kathleen Roffey

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2nd Prize “Called, Culled, Chosen, Caught” – Penn Kemp

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3rd Prize “Sensory Overload, Echolocation in for Repair” – Lynn Tait

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Honourable Mention “Eighty Land Birds to Know” – Deborah Windell

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Poetry London 2021 Open Theme Contest

DEADLINE: March 15th, 2021
***DEADLINE EXTENDED: March 19th, 2021

Submit your best work to Poetry London’s 2021 Open Theme poetry contest, judged by legendary Canadian poet Phil Hall! Contest entries must be one poem of no more than 40 lines, on any topic, in any style; only submit original work that has not been previously published in print or online.

Send poems in PDF format by email only to poetrylondon.contest@gmail.com. Please include your name, your complete contact information (including mailing address) and the title of your poem in the body of the email. Judging will be anonymous. Do not include your name in the PDF file of your poem. You must be a resident of (or attending school in) London and surrounding area to enter. Winners will be announced in early April 2021 (only winners will be contacted).

  • First Prize is $100
  • Second Prize is $75
  • Third Prize is $50

The winning poets will have their work published on Poetry London’s website and will be invited to read their poems at our April 20th digital video event, ahead of the feature readers.

Announcing Poetry London’s 2020 Poetry Contest Winners

We’re pleased to announce the winners of our 2020 Open Theme Poetry Contest judged by Lucas Crawford. Thanks to Lucas for being the judge and to all contestants for submitting a poem.

• 1st Prize: “The oldest photograph of” by Brian Baker

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• 2nd Prize: “Susan Gilbert” by Gabrielle Drolet

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• 3rd Prize: “O” by Megan Silva

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Poetry London 2020 Open Theme Contest

***DEADLINE EXTENDED!*** March 15th, 2020

Poetry London Poetry Contest 2020
Poetry Contest 2020

Submit your best work to Poetry London’s 2020 Open Theme poetry contest, judged by acclaimed Canadian poet Lucas Crawford! Contest entries must be one poem of no more than 40 lines, on any topic, in any style; only submit original work that has not been previously published in print or online.

Send poems in PDF format by email only to poetrylondon.contest@gmail.com. Please include your name, your complete contact information (including mailing address) and the title of your poem in the body of the email. Judging will be anonymous. Do not include your name in the PDF file with your poem. You must be a resident of (or attending school in) London and surrounding area to enter. Winners will be announced in early April 2020 (only winners will be contacted).

  • First Prize is $100
  • Second Prize is $75
  • Third Prize is $50

The winning poets will have their work published on Poetry London’s website and will be invited to read their poems at our April 22nd event, ahead of the feature readers.

Announcing 2019 Poetry London Contest Winning Poets

We’re pleased to announce the winners of our 2019 Poetry Contest judged by Canisia Lubrin. Thanks Canisia for being the judge and to all contestants for submitting a poem!

• 1st Prize: “Recycling Humanity” by Kayla Skinner

Read the poem ↓

• 2st Prize: “No Words” by Kelly McConnell

Read the poem ↓

• 3st Prize: “Abyss” by Isabella Kennedy

Read the poem ↓

Announcing 2017 Poetry Contest Winners

Poetry London is pleased to present the winners of the 2017 poetry contest!

The theme:  Canada’s 150th.
The winners:

  • Jack Williams
  • John Fooks
  • Emma Croll-Baehre