Theme: Year of the Sea with judge Kathy Miles

You can now read Kathy’s judge’s report for 2018

Judge Kathy Miles writes “I am really looking forward to judging this year’s competition. I’m hoping to see poems that capture the imagination, that engage and excite me with the poet’s unique interpretation of the subject; poems which remain in my head when I go to bed, lines and images that come back to haunt me at odd moments during the day.”

Shortlist for 2018 Penfro Poetry Competition

Thank you very much to all who participated in this year’s competition. According to this year’s judge, Kathy Miles, the standard was very high. Congratulations to the following poets who have been shortlisted. The judge, Kathy Miles, will be writing an overall report about this year’s competition to go up on the website after the festival. She will also comment on the winning entries. The winners will be announced on Sunday afternoon at the festival. The poems are not listed in any particular order:

  • I remember when I sang  Jane Burn
  • New Year’s Eve Victoria Gate
  • Landlocked Natalie Rees
  • Sea Views Pauline Gould
  • Low tide Natalie Rees
  • Consider the seahorse Cheryl Pearson
  • Missing Jane Burn
  • Burn-out Mary Gillonne
  • A glass eel’s own story Marion Oxley
  • Keepsake Helen Cook
  • Pebbles Morag McDowell-Smith
  • The sacred well speaks to Mererid Rae Howells

Kathy Miles lives in West Wales, and is a previous winner of the Bridport Prize and the Wells Festival of Literature Poetry Competition. Her work has appeared in many magazines and anthologies, and her third poetry collection, Gardening With Deer, was published by Cinnamon Press in 2016. She runs workshops and participates in various poetry groups, and performs at venues all over the UK.

She is a co-editor of The Lampeter Review, and is currently working on her fourth collection.


Rules for this year’s poetry competition.

  1. Poems should be based, loosely, around ‘The Year of the Sea.’
  2. Maximum length is 40 lines. Entries should be typed with the title of the poem at the top of the page. There should be no personal details about the writer on the poems. Postal entries should be on A4 paper and printed on one side only (please send two copies of each poem if entering by post). Online entries must be submitted as described on the website
  3. Closing date for receipt of entries is extended to Wednesday 15th August, 2018.
  4. Entries can be made online or by post and are open to everyone (locally/nationally or internationally). There is no limit to the number of entries but there is a fee of £4 for each poem submitted. Entries submitted online must be paid for via PayPal or by debit/credit card (there is a PayPal button on the online entry page). Postal entries are payable by cheque or postal order. Postal entries should be addressed to PENfro Poetry Competition, Rhosygilwen Mansion, Rhoshill, Pembs. SA432TW
  5. For postal entries use the poetry-entry-form-2018 or write your poem title/s and full contact details on a separate sheet of paper.
  6. Entries must not have been previously published in print or online, been broadcast or won a prize.
  7. Entries will be read and judged anonymously, so do not put your name on your poem.
  8. Entries will not be returned so please keep a copy. No corrections or alterations can be made after entries have been received.
  9. Prizes for 2018 are as follows: 1st – £300; 2nd – £125; 3rd – £75.
  10. The results of the competition will be announced on the PENfro Book Festival on Sunday, September 9th at 2.15pm, and afterwards posted on the website. The winning three poems will be read.
  11. No single poem may win more than one prize. By entering, competitors accept that prizewinning poems, with the authors’ names, may be published on the PENfro website and used in promotional material.
  12. Entries that fail to comply with rules and requirements will be disqualified. No correspondence can be entered into and the judge’s decision is final.
  13. The competition is open to anyone aged 16 or over. Poems should be in English, they must not have been previously published, nor be currently submitted for publication or competition elsewhere.