Polly Stretton’s poem, For Walls, was one of the three winning submissions in Amnesty Worcester’s poetry competition on the theme of ‘Home’. Dr Charley Barnes, one of the organisers and judges of the competition, said, “We asked for entries written to the theme of ‘Home’. Although, given the COVID-19 situation the world over, we soon realised this word might have a change of meaning for many people – and not just the refugees, who we hoped this theme would honour. ” Congratulations to Polly!
Many thanks to Sue Spiers for editing the 2020 edition of Openings. Openings is the annual anthology of the Open University Poets Society. Members vote for the most popular poems that have appeared in the previous year’s workshop magazines. This year’s edition has 37 poems. See the ‘Anthologies’ page for more detail and how to order a copy.
In the challenging times that we’re all experiencing, it has been impossible to book a face-to-face workshop for members —known as our November weekend—this year. The committee is proposing the following online event to replace it:
Workshop: Lights, Camera, Action: Cinematic Techniques to Dramatically Improve Your Poetry
Tutor: Derek Adams, poet and prize-winning photographer.
Dates and times: Tuesday 28th July 14:00-17:30; Wednesday 29th July 11:00-16:00; Thursday 30th July 11:00-13:00
Now full – applications closed
Applications from members should be made as soon as possible but no later than Sunday 21 June.
Two OUPS Poets have received nominations for this year’ Pushcart Prize. Sue Spiers was nominated by Carole Baldock, editor of Orbis magazine, for her poem ‘In Silence’, which appeared in the Spring edition, 2019 (Orbis 187), and Nigel Kent was nominated by Hedgehog Poetry Press for his poem, ‘Miscarried‘, which formed part of his collection, Saudade,
The Pushcart Prize honours the best poetry and prose published by small presses in the previous year. Editors of literary magazines and small presses are invited to nominate up to six works they have featured. Nominations are received from all over the world.
The 200th edition of the Society’s workshop magazine, edited by Eric Karoulla has been released today. The Society would like to thank and congratulate all those members and editors which have supported its production over the years.
We are now in the ‘delay’ phase of the Government’s coronavirus strategy. The situation has worsened quickly in the last week, and is expected to continue to worsen considerably over the coming weeks. Many of our members, including most of Committee, are in the most ‘at risk’ categories discussed by the Prime Minister yesterday. In view of this and to safeguard all members, the decision has been taken to postpone our AGM, originally planned for 18 April in central London, until further notice.
We have considered the possibility of holding a virtual AGM, but this would exclude some members who we know do not have access to the internet. No motions or nominations for election were notified in advance of the AGM.
Our Constitution makes provision for unexpected matters such as this to be dealt with by Committee, pending discussion at the next General Meeting.
The Committee have also discussed and agreed the following interim measures:
All Officers and Committee members will remain in their current roles until the AGM can be rearranged, at which point they will formally stand down and consider standing for re-election in the usual manner.
A ‘virtual’ Committee meeting will be held monthly by email to review the situation and the AGM will be reconvened at the earliest opportunity.
All other business of the Society will continue as normal.
Any other issues will be considered by the Committee as they arise, as part of usual business. If you have any queries or concerns about our approach, please direct them to one of the officers using the usual contact details (see OUP199 for details).
Thank you for your understanding at this time, and stay well.
Polly Stretton, Chair; Barbara Cumbers, Treasurer; Kimberley Pulling, Secretary; The Committee.