The annual Melbourne Poets Union International Poetry Competition, 2008 is now open. This year, we have two awards for those in the under 18 age group: one for free format poems on the theme of ‘Diversity’ and one for haiku. Each award has a prize of $100.

We encourage parents, teachers and community members to alert young people to this opportunity. The entry fee is three 50 cent Australian postal stamps, or the equivalent of AU$1.50 for overseas entries. Further information and printable entry form via this link to the MPU website:

Lorin Ford will be judging the haiku competition. Whilst haiku written in the 5-7-5 syllable pattern are acceptable, this pattern is no longer the contemporary norm. She’ll be looking for ‘unpadded’ haiku which employ fresh imagery, ‘showing, not telling’ and rhythmical flow.

Lorin’s recently released haiku book, ‘a wattle seedpod’, is available through publisher, Post Pressed, or contact Lorin at