1. Launch of Magma 51

    Written by Jacqueline Saphra at 9:00 am

    What an evening it was. A cold night, a packed house, and the utterly complementary talents of Pascale Petit and Selima Hill as our guest readers.

    We were also fortunate to host a large number of contributors, many of whom had travelled some distance – from Sweden, Switzerland, Brussels and even California.

    The uniqueness of the Magma launches is that everyone whose work is in the issue is invited to read, and one of the joys of being a Magma editor is that you have the opportunity to meet many of the contributors and hear them read their work, poems you have sifted and re-sifted out of many thousands: poems you love and have read deeply. It’s also a gratifying sight to watch an audience riffling through their copies of the magazine to find the page and read along.

    During her reading, Selima Hill spoke of her pleasure at being ‘among poets’ and said something to the effect that rather than feeling separated from her audience at the reading, which is so often the case, she felt as if we were all in it together. Which seems a good place to end this little blog – thanks to everyone – contributors, subscribers, and audience for being ‘in it’ with us.

    Pascale Petit

    Pascale Petit

    Alison Brackenbury

    Alison Brackenbury

    Alan Buckley

    Alan Buckley

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Mark Leech

    Mark Leech

     

     

     

     

  2. A short piece on the short poem

    Written by Karen McCarthy Woolf at 9:03 am

    I am going to start this article with a statistic. No poem under 10 lines has won the National Poetry Competition since (online) records began in 1978! The website shows winning poems only prior to 2000, but between 2001-2010 you can see all the shortlisted poems and only a handful of them were under 14 lines and none under 10 lines. The shortest is Frank Ortega’s eleven line poem Searching for An Affordable Crossbow which was commended in 2009.

    I use the National as an example, as they keep very comprehensive records online, but this trend bears out. Mslexia shows the last seven years with no short poem winners, while the Cardiff International Poetry Competition offers the exception in 2001-2 with Joan Newmann’s commended Carrageen Mousse and the Boy from Nepal which surely must have been a contender for the title alone.

  • Views expressed on this blog are those of the individual authors -- Magma seeks to present a range of views, not a single Magma view.
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