Briefly Write Poetry Prize 2021 – Results


The inaugural Briefly Write Poetry Prize has been a joy to judge. We read amazing poems about love, despair and confusion; books, bridges and bones; treasure, tears and trees; grapes, onions and… oranges.

We were honoured to receive 1,412 entries and thoroughly enjoyed reading all of them. We had to make agonising decisions to draw up the longlist – we let go of some amazing poems well worthy of recognition and reward.

We are therefore immensely proud to share below our selection of winning and commended poems, along with the names of our longlisted poets. The best entries were subtly powerful and powerfully subtle.

Poems, like moments, are transitional and ephemeral; they are both self-contained houses and doors leading to the unknown. Each winning, commended or longlisted poem is a snapshot of a moment or a moment of a snapshot. Each line is an invitation to a new word or world, as well as the ending of an old one.

We hope you’ll agree with all our choices… but acknowledge you probably won’t. Personal taste is a wonderful thing. And poetry is a conversation. We would love to hear what you think – reflections on the poems, discussion of themes or styles, congratulations to the winning poets – in the comments below.

The Briefly Write Poetry Prize will return next year. We hope you’ll submit a poem or join us again to read (and listen to) the winning pieces. Once again, the size of the prize fund will be determined by how many donations we receive. We don’t make any money out of Briefly Write – all donations go directly towards website costs and paying writers!

Thank you again for your interest and support. We hope you enjoy making these poetic discoveries as much as we did.

Dream big, write briefly,

Daniel & Elinor


Khushi Bajaj, ‘Oranges’


Creana Bosac, ‘Steel City’

Adeleke Deborah, ‘When You Speak’

Georgia Hilton, ‘The Lost Art of Staring into Fires’

Nadia Lines, ‘Telling my Granddad I Like Girls’

Ilias Tsagas, ‘Waterloo & City’


Faiz Ahmad, ‘At the Burial’

Virginia Boudreau, ‘By the Potting Shed’

Martin Heavisides, ‘Insect Life’

Tamanda Kanjaye, ‘Paper Dolls’

CB McCall, ‘Thistles in August’

Eamonn McKeon, ‘It’s Too Late to be Asleep’

Valerie Nieman, ‘Girl at the Beach’


Lynn Aprill, ‘Anthem for the Year’
Shalom Galve Aranas, ‘Flight of the Manananngal’
Gaynor Beesley, ‘An Unscheduled Stop at Dovey Junction’
Tammana Begum, ‘Where do we belong?’
Thomas Brezing, ‘Strands’
Eleni Cay, ‘Air lyrics’
Corinne Clark, ‘Tuesday, closing’
Shirley Anne Cook, ‘Needle’
Andreea Finichiu, ‘Untitled’
Patrick Green, ‘Give Us One’
Jan Harris, ‘Anish Kapoor’s Sky Mirror at Houghton Hall’
Lewis Hedges, ‘Becalm’
Rachel Jung, ‘On Digging a Hole’
Ben Keatinge, ‘Homecoming’
Miodrag Kojadinović, ‘August 1968 Afternoon Break in Eastern Serbia, in 3 haiku’
Lori Levy, ‘Under it All’
Gavin Lumsden, ‘Kinetic’
Kathryn Anna Marshall, ‘There are many more dogs in the woods these days’
Louise Mather, ‘The Shape of Blossom’
Caitlin Bianca Mathey, ‘Two Seconds, and Then You Want To Sit Down’
Cholena Maurer, ‘birthdays with my father’
Tony McAndrew, ‘Bridges’
Elisabeth Otocka, ‘The Interlude’
Jennifer Patino, ‘I Recognized Her By Her Housecoat’
Claudio Perinot, ‘Heuristics’
Stephanie Powell, ‘Dighton Street’
Audrey L. Reyes, ‘A Minute in Our City’
Arya Sharma, ‘Bare Your Bones’
Richard Simpson, ‘Stretcher Duty’
Jeff Skinner, ‘August’
Maya Stott, ‘blue’
Sally Jane Tate, ‘The Falling Man’
Steven Taylor, ‘Seven’
Liz Verlander, ‘Brumous’
Binny Yadav, ‘Wisdom Springs’
Intigam Yashar, ‘All the covert rooms’

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