We launch the sixth annual Timothy Corsellis Prize, 75 years after the Normandy D-Day landings. We’re calling for young poets’ responses to the life and works of poets of the Second World War, and this year we’ve added acclaimed Hungarian poet Miklós Radnóti to our list of poets. Timothy Corsellis was a young poet and […]
Ever wanted to translate a poem? We’ve teamed up with Clare Pollard, editor of Modern Poetry in Translation, to challenge young writers to do just that. You don’t need to know any other languages to take part – find out more below… Today your job is to co-translate a poem. That poem is called ‘Today’, […]
On Sunday 20 July 1969 the very first humans stepped out onto the moon. To mark 50 years since the moon landings, we’re challenging young writers and spoken word artists to create poems about the moon and its place in world culture and history. Winning poets will be part of the Moon Festival: the largest […]
Mary on the Green is a campaign to erect a statue of Mary Wollstonecraft in Newington Green, London. But who is Mary Wollstonecraft? Writer Bee Rowlatt from Mary on the Green is here to help us find out more – and to challenge you to write poems about this Enlightenment philosopher who helped create the […]
Since 1 May 2009, Carol Ann Duffy has been the United Kingdom’s Poet Laureate. Her time as Poet Laureate is coming to an end this April, and to celebrate her work and her time as Laureate we’re challenging young writers everywhere to craft poems in response to Duffy’s writing. This challenge is now closed and […]
Acclaimed US poet, teacher and editor Peter Kahn explains the new poetic form that Ravi Shankar calls the ‘21st century sonnet’ – and challenges you to write your own. Congratulations to the winners of this challenge, selected by poet Peter Kahn: you can read their poems in the sidebar. We also congratulate poets whose work […]
How are poems like memes? Poet Rishi Dastidar thinks about how these strange, self-replicating internet things can be likened to writing, and challenges you to create poems inspired by memes. Let’s start with a picture that you probably know: Although it really doesn’t feel like itself until we do something with it. Like perhaps: […]
This winter we’re challenging young poets everywhere to write about our fir-y friends: trees! We’re delighted to share seven exciting prompts to help inspire your tree-writing. Read on and get scribbling… In the northern hemisphere, winter is in full swing and we’re thinking about trees. Many of them have already shivered off their leafy coats […]
Could you be one of the Bletchley set? Poet So Mayer takes us into the Bletchley Park archives and invites young poets everywhere to try a number of cleverly coded writing exercises. Write in response to one or more of these, or simply write a poem inspired by the work at Bletchley Park and email […]
Welcome to our fourth and final August challenge for 2018! This week, Foyle Young Poet Aidan Forster invites you to create poems using contemporary and local language. Could you write a poem out of online jargon? A poem incorporating your favourite song lyrics? And how will your choice of words reflect your identity? Read on […]
In our third August challenge of 2018, Damayanti Chatterjee, one of this year’s two Foyle Young Poets interns, asks young writers to think about their relationship with their country. She explores how poets of the Second World War interrogate national identity and challenges you to respond. “What can the England of 1840 have in common […]
Welcome to our second August challenge of 2018! Rummage through your bookshelves and ransack the library – this week Foyle Young Poet Bailey Blackburn is challenging writers to make poems out of already-published texts. Find August challenge #1 here. When I first began writing poetry, I was often terrified by the concept of the blank […]
Welcome to the first of four August challenges in 2018! Every week in August a Foyle Young Poet will challenge you to write a new kind of poem. This week Enshia Li is exploring the unusual mutant world of the prose poem! And remember, if you’re confused by any definitions you can check out our […]
The fifth annual Timothy Corsellis Prize for poetry and essays is now closed for entries. Thanks to all our entrants and read the winning poems on the side of this page. Timothy Corsellis was a young poet and pilot killed in 1941. The Prize was set up in his name, with the support of his […]
Young Poets Network is once again teaming up with the Freud Museum to bring you a new challenge inspired by their upcoming Weekend of Discontent. Imagine that the year is 1938, eighty years ago. Europe is brimming with tension. The anti-Jewish Nazi party in Germany, having gained power in 1933, have just annexed Austria. Thousands […]
Who was W.S. Graham? What will be your new language? Are you going to try your best on silence? To celebrate W.S. Graham’s centenary, we’re searching for poems inspired by his enigmatic and inviting work. Poet Rachael Boast introduces WSG and offers prompts to kick-start your writing in this new challenge. This morning I am […]
Feel inspired, angry, and polemical about a topic which has the potential to ignite us all. Young Poets Network have teamed up with End Hunger UK to call for poetic responses to the scandal of UK hunger. This challenge is now closed: read the winners in the anthology below. Did you know that 14 […]
To mark International Women’s Day and 100 years since some women got the vote in the UK, former Foyle Young Poet Ankita Saxena is challenging you to make yourself heard! We want you to write protest poems using a classic device of both poetry and protest: repetition. Votes for Women In 1908, two early suffragettes interrupted a […]
We are delighted to present the Thinking Outside the Penalty Box anthology, including the winning poems in this challenge. Though the challenge is now closed, read the poems and the challenge to get inspired to write your own poems inspired by extraordinary African lives in football. Lizzy Attree and poet Nick Makoha have been working with […]
Chris Meade asks young poets to write about all the things they’ve nearly done… or will nearly do. Nearlyologists call on all people to share freely and openly one with another who they really and nearly are… Once others decided which were real writers deserving reproduction. Today we are nearlywriters, able to amplify and illuminate […]
We launch a new challenge based around the classic poem ‘Timothy Winters’ in celebration of poet Charles Causley’s centenary. Charles Causley 2017 is the centenary of Charles Causley’s birth. Born and raised in Cornwall, he was a poet whose work for adults and children ranged across war poetry, religious poetry, eco poetry and protest poetry. […]
Gather round the fire as Young Poets Network launches a festive new short poem challenge themed around wish lists… The gift-giving season is nigh! As the nights creep in earlier and earlier, here at Poetry Towers we’re all looking forward to sharing food, presents and frivolity with our nearest and dearest. We’re asking young writers […]
Following the brilliant poems we received for our Ways to be wilder challenge in 2016, we’ve partnered up once again with the charity People Need Nature and T. S. Eliot Prize-winning poet Jen Hadfield. This time we’re asking you to consider the names we use every day and the histories lurking behind them. The poet Don Paterson says, ‘Every […]
Thursday 21 September 2017 marks the 80th anniversary of the publication of J. R. R. Tolkien’s classic The Hobbit. To celebrate, we’re challenging you to write and send in your own fiendish riddles. Riddles are poems which describe something (or someone) without naming it. The intrigue of a riddle is trying to guess the object, […]
The August challenges are designed by Foyle Young Poets to send you into a fever of creativity over the summer. In this year’s last August challenge, Foyle intern Zainab Ismail asks our younger poets to play with shape and pour us a concrete poem… I remember the tall minarets of Morocco many summers ago. Prayers […]
The August challenges are designed by Foyle Young Poets to send you into a fever of creativity over the summer. Foyler Marina McCready encourages you to write a poem for the Timothy Corsellis Prize by asking how much (or how little) free will exists in conflict and war… In war poetry, one recurring theme is free will, or […]
The August challenges are designed by Foyle Young Poets to send you into a fever of creativity over the summer. In our second challenge, Daniel Blokh inspires you to immerse your reader in a particular place – from weeping willows to snowswept mountains… As a first-generation American, I have always loved hearing my parents’ stories […]
The August challenges are designed by Foyle Young Poets to send you into a fever of creativity over the summer. First off, four-time-Foyler Magnus Dixon takes us to the rich, mysterious edges of our familiar places… In this August challenge, I would like you to take me on a journey to your edgelands, the forgotten […]
We are delighted to announce the launch of the fourth annual Timothy Corsellis Prize! Timothy Corsellis was a young poet and pilot killed in 1941. The Prize was set up in his name, with the support of his family, to encourage more people to read the powerful but lesser-known poets of the Second World War. […]
Young Poets Network has teamed up with the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, to present you with a challenge to write about the changing face of the Polar Regions. We asked our friends at the National Maritime Museum to tell us a little bit more about this idea, and how you can explore it in your […]
Young Poets Network has once again teamed up with Oxfam to bring you a challenge from poet Harry Man all about global inequality and climate change. This challenge is about thinking about what’s happening across the world to create new, daring and powerfully moving poetry to help support action on climate change. Whether it’s writing […]
The winning poems of this challenge, plus a commissioned poem by the challenge-writer, judge, and poet Helen Mort, can be read in our beautiful new anthology, below. Though I am the Universe is now closed for entries, you can still read the challenge below and write your own climate-inspired poems. To kick off Young Poets […]
For language-lovers, it might seem odd to focus on getting rid of words – but in this challenge celebrating the short poem, that’s exactly what we want you to do… Of course, we love poems that flower and flow across many stanzas, pages, even filling whole books. But there’s something about the brilliantly executed short […]
This winter, we’re asking for you for something a bit different – an alternative to the seasonal poem that’s full of puddings, parties and snow.
For poems capturing the sights and sounds of the Great Fire of London.
We’ve teamed up with English National Ballet to bring you a tantalizing challenge based around Akram Khan’s new production of Giselle, a tale of love, betrayal and redemption.
In our fourth and final August challenge, Mikaela Carmichael asks you to explore the stories and characters of different languages.
In our third August Challenge, Lauren Maltas encourages you to explore ideas of contradiction and nonconformity in poetry, focusing on the work of Russian author Anna Akhmatova.
In our second August Challenge, Chloe Smith, a 2015 Foyle Young Poet, asks you to focus on specific moments to create vivid, unforgettable poems.
Ben Read, a 2015 Foyle Young Poet, challenges you to experiment with truth and lies to create poetry that twists, turns and deceives…
Our prestigious annual prize celebrating work which explores and responds to poetry of the Second World War
Send us your creative responses to the world beyond the stage lights!
Tap into your wild side with this challenge from People Need Nature and poet Jen Hadfield
Young Poets Network is joining forces with Oxfam to tackle global inequality and gender inequality through poetry!
We’ve teamed up with our friends at the National Trust to bring you a brand new poetry challenge all about memory and history – and what these mean to you.
Agincourt 600 Poetry Competition: Challenge #3 This year is the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt that was fought between the English and the French. It was part of the Hundred Years’ War – which actually lasted for over 100 years! The battle took place on 25th October 1415 in Northern France. Won by […]
Poet Richard O’Brien explores the classic representation of the Battle of Agincourt in Shakespeare’s Henry V, and challenges you to write a poem rediscovering some of the more marginalised voices from this epic battle. Illustration by Alex Foster Power and Perspective Perhaps the most famous version of the story of Agincourt is Shakespeare’s play Henry […]
The Battle of Agincourt On St. Crispin’s Day (October 25th), 1415, an English army led by king Henry V defeated a much larger French force in battle near the French village of Agincourt. You can read all about the battle here: http://www.youngpoetsnetwork.org.uk/2015/10/28/agincourt-600-young-poets-competition/. Between seven and ten thousand French soldiers were killed, with England’s losses […]
December is finally with us! Here at Poetry Towers, we’re really starting to feel the bite of winter. Hurrying to work, our coat collars turned up against the cold, we’ve been gulping down warming mugs of hot chocolate, shaking the moths out of our woolliest mittens, and even sporting the odd tartan blanket over […]
This year is the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt that was fought between the English and the French. It was part of the Hundred Years’ War – which actually lasted for over 100 years! The battle took place on 25th October 1415 in Northern France. Won by the English who were led by […]
The Poetry Society’s fabulous spoken word competition SLAMbassadors wants your poems and raps on the theme of ‘Identity’. SLAMbassadors UK, the national youth slam for 12-18 year olds, has now been running for 14 years, involving as many young people as possible in reading, writing, and performing poetry. Slam is the competitive art of performance […]
Photo credit: Lightbulb Variation 1 by Renaissance Vector The theme for National Poetry Day 2015 is ‘light’ so, to celebrate, we’d like to brighten up our Twitter feed on 8th October with your couplets. From Wordsworth’s ‘celestial light‘ in 1804 to Simon Barraclough’s ‘Sunspots‘ in 2015, poets have always been influenced by light and darkness. […]
Laura Furner, a former Foyle winner, sets the second of our four August challenges – a month of vivid and varied reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get you inspired! This challenge encourages you to write a poem for the Timothy Corsellis Prize, by looking at the work of WWII poet John Jarmain. […]
Jessica Walker, a former Foyle Winner, introduces the first of our four August challenges – a month of inspiring writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get you reading and creating! This challenge asks you to write a poem featuring a vivid, jump-off-the-page character. It begins with a character, usually, and once he stands up on […]
The Museum of London tells us about pioneering female photographer Christina Broom, who captured many aspects of life in the first decades of the twentieth century, including the campaign for women’s right to vote. Then they challenge you to write your own poem capturing a moment of struggle, drama and change, as Broom did. Christina […]
After an extremely successful first year, the Timothy Corsellis Prize for poems responding to Second World War poetry returns, with a new Young Critics Prize running alongside the Poetry Prize. This competition is now closed. Catch up on the winning poems here! Last year, we were delighted to receive hundreds of entries for the inaugural […]
Become a literary translator for our new competition with The British Council: translator Don Cellini provides all the tools you need to create a new version of a poem by celebrated Mexican poet Pedro Serrano. Prizes include publication, poetry workshops and a stash of goodies.
We have teamed up again with the Freud Museum in London to get you writing about that most resonant and influential of subjects – the unconscious.
The new mini-competition from Young Poets Network and the Museum of London is to write a poem capturing the sights and sounds of Sherlock Holmes’s Victorian London!
Young Poets Network teams up with The Reading Agency to get you writing about the huge importance of reading.
Discover the great master of haiku and haibun, Matsuo Basho, and experiment with the Japanese tradition of mixing haiku and prose.
It’s a real thrill to announce the latest writing challenge on Young Poets Network, in collaboration with the British Library – we want your poems on a Gothic theme! From Frankenstein’s monster to Dracula to Dr Jekyll’s transformation into the brutal Mr Hyde, take inspiration from this mysterious and macabre tradition.
Young Poets Network is delighted to be collaborating with The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, to get you writing about the astonishing avian world. Wing your poems our way and winners will be published online and sent prizes – if only we could do it by pigeon post…
Ofi Press Editor Jack Little is looking for new poems by Young Poets Networkers for the April 2015 edition of their magazine!
Back when Young Poets Network first started, poet Matthew Sweeney wrote a brilliant feature about titles, and how they make all the difference to a poem. For the next challenge, we are asking you to read his advice below, and then have a go at renaming a famous poem.
Travel in the realms of gold with our new challenge in collaboration with The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace. Feast your eyes on some of the stunning pieces from the Gold exhibition and then find your own way to write about this most precious of metals. Winners will be published on Young Poets Network and receive some goodies from the gallery shop.
It’s National Poetry Day on Thursday 2 October and we’d love you to help us celebrate! The theme this year is Remember, and we are asking for your lines and phrases of poetry on this subject to post on Facebook and Twitter throughout the day and publish on Young Poets Network.
Foyle summer intern Hannah Locke sets our final August challenge – a month of vivid and varied reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get you inspired! This challenge encourages you to write a poem for the Timothy Corsellis Prize, the new annual poetry award on Young Poets Network, by looking at the theme of transition or change.
Jade Cuttle, a former Foyle winner and one of the 2014 Foyle summer interns, sets the third of our four August challenges – a month of vivid and varied reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get you inspired! This challenge is specifically for poets aged 13 and under, and shows you some exciting new ways to write.
Dominic Hale, a former Foyle winner, sets the second of our four August challenges – a month of vivid and varied reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get you inspired! This challenge encourages you to write a poem for the Timothy Corsellis Prize, the new annual poetry award on Young Poets Network, by looking at the work of WWII poet Keith Douglas.
Phoebe Thomson introduces the first of our August challenges – a month of vivid and varied reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get you inspired! This challenge asks you to write a poem on location.
Young Poets Network is very excited to announce the first annual Timothy Corsellis Prize, for poems responding to the Second World War. Discover some fascinating young soldier-poets and write a poem in response to their life or work. The lucky winners, chosen by judges from the Poetry Society, the Imperial War Museum and the War Poets Association, will receive cash prizes, poetry books, poetry posters and publication!
The team at the Freud Museum introduce the celebrated psychologist Sigmund Freud, and his writing about war and humankind – and challenge you to write a poem in response.
The team behind the new Shakespeare display at the Victoria and Albert Museum inspire you to inhabit one of Shakespeare’s characters in our new writing challenge.
As part of the celebrations for the Edith Sitwell Festival 2014, Charles Mundye discusses the poet’s life and work, and sets two intriguing and inspiring writing challenges!
Former Foyle Young Poet Helen Mort sets out her fourth and final poetry writing challenge, asking you to respond to images from Cape Farewell’s archive of photos, videos and blog posts.
Former Foyle Young Poet Helen Mort sets out her third poetry writing challenge, asking you to respond to images from Cape Farewell’s archive of photos, videos and blog posts.
Former Foyle Young Poet Helen Mort sets out her second poetry writing challenge, asking you to respond to images from Cape Farewell’s archive of photos, videos and blog posts.
Five-times-Foyle Young Poet and TS Eliot Prize-nominated Helen Mort introduces the first of her four poetry writing challenges, asking you to respond to images from Cape Farewell’s archive of photos, videos and blog posts.
Young Poets Network has teamed up with Free Word, who work at the meeting point of literature, literacy and free expression, to offer you the chance to write a new poem inspired by the theme of ‘trust’. Winners will receive prizes, publication and a reading opportunity – read on for further details, as Free Word tells us more about the idea of trust and the poetry challenge:
English National Ballet has teamed up with the Poetry Society and Young Poets Network to offer you the chance to write a special poem based on their swashbuckling new ballet Le Corsaire; a tale of love, intrigue and betrayal inspired by Lord Byron’s poem The Corsair.
We are very excited to announce that English National Ballet is staging a brand new production of Le Corsaire, a ballet inspired by Lord Byron’s poem The Corsair (1814) – and want Young Poets Networkers to get involved!
Sarah Fletcher, Foyle Young Poet Winner 2012, calls for your poems in the last of our August challenges – a month of exciting reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get your teeth stuck into!
Charlotte Higgins, Foyle Young Poet and SLAMbassadors winner, gives you the third August challenge – a month of exciting reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get your teeth stuck into!
Matthew Broomfield, a former Foyle Young Poet, presents the second of our August challenges – a month of exciting reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get your teeth stuck into!
Fielding Ronshaugen, a former Foyle Winner and Foyle Summer Intern at the Poetry Society, introduces the first of our August challenges – a month of exciting reading and writing tasks from Foyle Young Poets to get your teeth stuck into!
We asked for your top tips on all steps of the creative process, from inspiration and getting the words down, to that pesky umpteenth redraft. And you all bowled us over with your poetry know-how! You could think of this as your one-stop writing workshop, together with Part II!
We asked for your top tips on all steps of the creative process, from inspiration and getting the words down, to that pesky umpteenth redraft. And you all bowled us over with your poetry know-how! You could think of this as your one-stop writing workshop, together with Part II!
Lend your voice to the dawn chorus!
Brilliant poet Clare Pollard offered fifty lucky poets the opportunity to send in a poem and receive feedback. Unfortunately we couldn’t pass on all the great entries we received, so for those who weren’t randomly selected, the Young Poets Network team has compiled a list of tips and advice based on all the poems that came in.
What would happen if La Belle Dame Sans Merci met the Jabberwock? Or if the Owl and the Pussycat met Macavity the Mystery Cat? For this workshop, which gets you thinking hard about point of view, we want you to imagine a meeting between two colourful characters from poetry!
Bed of fish, smooth path of ships, island-ring, realm of lobsters, slopes of the sea-king, whale-house, land of the ocean-noise, blood of the earth, frothing beer of the coastline… Debbie Potts explores the world of kennings – tiny, metaphorical riddles used by Viking and Anglo-Saxon poets – and challenges all you twenty-first century poets to create your own!
The YPN Team offers general feedback on your poems about stars.
One hundred years ago, in September 1912 in the British Museum tea shop, London, Ezra Pound described his poet-friends H.D. (Hilda Doolittle) and Richard Aldington as imagistes…
Red Rascal Strawberry is e-anthology, written by members of YPN, taking you on a tour of homes and landscapes, from bright and luxurious gardens through to exciting and sinister buildings.
Huw Williams of Melodica, Melody and Me challenged members of the Young Poets Network to unleash their inner song writer, the results are in, find out who our winning song writers are.
We asked you to send us Olympic couplets which we could join together into a giant Olympic Relay Poem. We had an amazing response, read the poem and find your couplet!
We’re creating a giant relay poem to help prepare for the Olympics, and we’re asking you to contribute two lines! Plus our favourite three submissions will win Young Poet Network notebooks.
Huw Williams of Melodica, Melody and Me explores the cross over between poetry and lyrics. Huw has also supplied an instrumental version of one of his songs. Our challenge is for you to write your own original song lyrics to go with this music!
Daljit Nagra shows you how to write a poem using the Great Poetry Animator.
Young Poets Network is collaborating with the National Portrait Gallery for a new challenge, inviting you to write a history for one of the unknown faces in the Gallery’s Collection in their current display Imagined Lives: Portraits of unknown people.
Glyn Maxwell talks about the cross over between writing poetry and plays. The key is to inhabit the whole world in order to make your character real.
Think of your poems as a person going up to strangers and talking to them, what must the poem do to make people listen? Award winning poet Jack Underwood’s workshop will help write a new poem to engage your reader. Click “read on” to take part.
Join poet Richard Tyrone Jones and if:book’s Chris Meade for an online workshop on Writing (Mis)Giuded Tours and Other Poetry Happenings on Saturday 22nd October at 2PM where you will be guided into writing your own (Mis)guided Tour Poem.
Meet Poetry Digest, the magazine that ices poems on cakes!
Write your own holiday-inspired ‘poem on a postcard’, and view Clare Pollard’s feedback on her favourite poems from last years Poetry Exchange.
What does ‘The Future’ look like to you? Write a poem with ‘The Future’ as your theme, and view some poetry installations on the same theme.
Like Starlings is a project where poets collaborate to write poems in response to one another. This week Caleb Klaces, founder of Like Starlings, is offering you the chance to write your own Like Starlings style poem. Selected poems will be featured on the Young Poets Network website and five poets will receive Te Neves Notebooks.
For this week’s troubleshooting session, I’d like you to send me poems that uses form – whether you’re struggling with a sonnet or having hassle with your haiku, I’d like to help! Not Sure what form to pick – why not write a ballad.
We all know how helpful it is to get feedback on your work, Clare Pollard is offering her advice on your problem poems!
Joelle Taylor reads her poem ‘No Man’s Land’ and invites you to write a poem inhabiting another character.
Can you write a poem that sticks to just one vowel? Take up Ross Sutherland’s challenge, inspired by the Oulipo movement of the 1960s.