Longley Way To Go

There are too many poetry competitions. There are not enough poetry competitions. Both statements are half-true. Until a poet has won one, it is worth going on. Or not bothering. So many of my poet friends and colleagues see-saw between the self-hate that is entering, the self-love that is entering, such black holes, that suck up our money, our hopes, and hold onto our best unpublished poems for months and months. And yet, and yet. Some poetry competitions are more equal than others. One of the UK's best is the Poetry London one. Closing date this year is 31 May. And the judge? Michael Longley. That elicits a wow from Eyewear. Longley is a master lyricist, and one of the finest Irish poets since Yeats. It'd be an honour to be selected by such a poet. Speaking of Poetry London, it launches its latest issue on St Patrick's Day March 17, at Foyles, Soho.