Do you remember the poetry contest for the 2018 Lagos International Poetry Festival that was announced here? Well, after a thorough judging session by the judges, Dami Àjàyí and Titilope Sonuga, the entries of 15 poets were chosen to be featured in the anthology, and 3 of these 15 poets, who had the most outstanding poems, will receive a cash prize of ₦20,000 each.
100 entries were submitted for this contest, but only 16 made the top entries. Originally, 20 poets were supposed to be featured in the anthology, while 5 poets were supposed to receive a cash prize of ₦20,000, but based on the feedback from the judges, the quality of entries were really poor. Due to this, the judges had to got through a lot of deliberation in selecting the shortlist and they decided on choosing only 16 poems, instead of 20, and 3 cash winners, instead of 5.
So in no particular order, we present to you, the 16 poems to be featured in the anthology, and the top 3 that will get the cash prize:
– And Death fell asleep by Rukevwe Jegede Ikpen
– Collection of broken thoughts by Edaki Timothy
– Mama’s Advice by Oluwatoba Oyerinade
– Music of the guns by Iloh Onyekachi
– They say I do not carry my place well by Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto
– Tamed by O.O Akinyele
– A decades dream by Chinenye Olivia
– Somewhere in the middle by Okechukwu Princess
– Dashed by Okpara Ugochukwu
– Him by Micheal Akuchie
– A truthful lie by Muhammadu Fathi Adepeju
– HE-ARTICULATE by Rhabbi
– How we raise our daughters in Africa by Micheal Ace
– The colour of death by Christtie Jay
– Salted wounds by Mazpa Ejikem
– LIPFEST 18 by Mesioye Johnson
These top 15 entries will also be rewarded with a FREE Masterclass with Kwame Dawes. If your poem made this list above, go to Kwame Dawes’s Masterclass with an identification to verify your name and you’ll be registered on site.
Kwame Dawes is the Glenna Luschei Editor of Prairie Schooner and Chancellor’s Professor of English at the University of Nebraska. He is also Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, director of the African Poetry Book Fund and Artistic Director of the Calabash International Literary Festival. He has authored 35 books of poetry, fiction, criticism, and essays, including, most recently, City of Bones: A Testament (Northwestern, 2017), Speak from Here to There (Peepal Tree Press), co-written with Australian poet John Kinsella, appeared in 2016.
Congratulations to all who made the cut. The launch of the anthology will be announced but before then, the top 3 winners, should send a DM to @lagospoetryfest on Instagram, containing their contact information (Name, email address and phone number) to redeem their cash prizes.
We appreciate LIPFest for their beautiful partnership, and for hosting the contest on our platform. Let’s do this again next year!