Poetry Archive Now! Poems for 2020 launches April 10th 2020
This is the 20th anniversary of our first Archive recording! We are opening up to all poets to join the Archive and share your work with the millions of people who visit and love our collections. Times are changing quickly and with our live recording programme necessarily suspended, we wanted to find new ways to include poets and record and preserve poetry to make it available to listeners who need it now more than ever. We want to reflect the strength and diversity of poetry written in this extraordinary year and preserve it for future generations to reach.
From April 10th to September 10th 2020 we are opening up our archives to all poets, asking that they make a video/film recording of themselves reading or reciting a single poem – for example through their phones or through social media ‘live’ platforms – and send their recording to us. From April 10th onwards we will begin publishing the poems to our new Poetry Archive YouTube channel where the millions of people who visit the Poetry Archive each year can hear them and know the poets who created them. In September 2020, a panel led by Imtiaz Dharker will select their 20 favourite entries for an Archive Collection for 2020 to be celebrated on our website.
To give you an idea, Simon Armitage created a home-made video especially for us of his ‘Lockdown’ poem, which you can see on our Facebook and Twitter channels now. He tells us “this was a Home-made film (daughter on phone-camera) of me reading Lockdown, in the garden, in the West Yorkshire Pennines, on a fresh spring day. First day proper of the emergency measures, but the blue tits and the buzzard in the background obviously hadn’t heard about the restrictions on movement, gatherings and vitality. And the sun was reliably in its proper position at the given hour.”
Each poet chosen for a special collection on our Archive will be offered £100 fee for the use of their poem. As a charity the Poetry Archive is sadly unable to pay a royalty for every submission we receive as we truly hope hundreds of poets will offer a poem they want the Archive to preserve and keep. In return, we promise our extensive marketing and profile power, staff enthusiasm and our archiving expertise and capacity. We want to work hard on your behalf in these challenging times. We will curate a series of Virtual Poetry Festivals to share poets’ work through the year, invite the public to curate collections and share access to poets’ work through our marketing networks and social media – reaching poetry lovers around the world. Our websites enjoy around 3 million page-views per year – we can provide a world stage for your work. We will welcome poets into the Poetry Archive family by committing our archiving resources to ensure every poem we publish is afterwards archived securely for future generations to reach and enjoy.
Tracey Guiry, Director of the Poetry Archive says: “The Poetry Archive is a freely accessible, living archive of recordings of contemporary poets which has always been a trusted source of recordings of poetry. Our 20th anniversary year is proving our most challenging yet, but we know there are so many more poets’ voices out there which our resources have been unable to stretch to and reach. Free poetry, which can be enjoyed from anywhere online, is needed now more than ever. This initiative allows us to play our part in providing another platform for poetry and for poets to share their work with the millions of people who visit and love the Archive.”
Poets will always know they are a part of something special, forever, and that Poetry Archive keeps their poem and their legacy safe. We hope you can join us.
Submission form will open on our website April 10th 2020. We thought you might like a head start, so keep an eye on our newsletters and social media for more details. We can’t wait to hear and see your poems!
Advice to keep in mind:
- Only submissions completed through the online form on poetryarchive.org between April 10th and September 10th 2020 can be accepted.
- Open to poets over 18 years of age.
- Each recording should be a video of yourself reading your own single poem with a maximum length 2 minutes reading time. Tell us the name of your poem and then read it aloud. See the video made by Simon Armitage as an example
- Poems should be written during, and in response to, 2020. They can be on any theme, subject and in any style up to 2 minutes in reading time. We want future generations to look back and see the refrains, concerns, emotions of 2020 in all their diversity.
- We do not ask for exclusive rights to this work. By submitting a poem to the Poetry Archive you confirm that you have the authority to grant us copyright permissions to share your work through the Poetry Archive website, our YouTube, newsletters, online collections and other official Poetry Archive social media channels.
- The Poetry Archive collects poetry written in English from around the world so we ask all poems to be in English.
- At all times the Poetry Archive retains the right to choose which poems to publish. We always look for reasons to include poets in the Archive and no poet will be unreasonably excluded.
- We regret we cannot enter into individual discussions with poets. We are a very small team but we will do our best to provide information through our website and FAQ’s.
Thank you for your support for the Poetry Archive.
Our Submission form opens April 10th 2020. We can’t wait to hear and see your poems!
Please see terms and conditions for entry.