A Living Tribute

10th Annual Nâzım Hikmet Poetry Competition Accepting Submissions through January 15, 2018

By Ezgi Üstündağ | November 13, 2017

Poets around the world are invited to submit their original work to the 10 th annual Nâzım Hikmet Poetry Competition. The competition, judged by award-winning academics, poets and translators, will remain open until January 15, 2018.

Aside from a monetary award of $100, competition winners and honorable mentions will be invited to read at the Nâzım Hikmet Poetry Festival (to be held in Cary, North Carolina, April 6-8, 2018) and their poems will be published in the Festival anthology. Furthermore, six poets out of the list of winners, honorable mentions and long-list finalists will receive a Pushcart Prize nomination. Entrants should submit three original, unpublished poems in English.

Submissions are only accepted online. Click here for the full submission guidelines.

The competition and festival’s namesake is often recognized as the leading figure among Turkey’s 20th century artists. In his lifetime, he was recognized for both his message of social justice as well as his lyricism and mastery of the free verse form. Unfortunately, Nâzım’s “romantic revolutionary” ideas—the same ones that earned him the admiration of Picasso, Neruda and Paul Robeson, among other great intellects in Turkey and abroad—made him the target of political persecution at home. He died in exile in 1963.

Nâzım’s work has been translated into more than 50 languages and his thousands of poems are still widely read, discussed and dissected in Turkey. His Turkish citizenship was restored in 2009, and today many buildings and streets in his beloved homeland bear his name.

The competition and its parent event, the Nâzım Hikmet Poetry Festival (also in its tenth year), were organized by a group of friends in Cary, North Carolina, to commemorate Nâzım Hikmet while supporting contemporary practitioners of the craft from around the world. The festival and competition are organized by the American-Turkish Association of North Carolina with support from the Town of Cary. You can reach the festival organizers at contact@nazimhikmetpoetryfestival.org.

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