Monday, August 07, 2006

Juggling jam jars and polishing poems

Exhausting times in the kitchens of chaos. Blackberry season is upon us, the apples are waxing and the corn has hit the shelves, or rather the bins of Silver Rill. The jam jars are filling, batch by batch. This week I've made two kinds: plum and blackberry, and salal, raspberry and blackberry. I've stewed blackberries and apples and picked some oregon grapes and juiced them ready for the next batch. I have accepted the cruel truth that there is not one plum to be had from my trees and am biding my time till the apples are fully ripe, dusting off the juicer in anticipation. I thawed some frozen apple, blackberry and carrot juice I made last summer and agreed with myself that baby carrots are the bee's knees in a combo like that.

Between cauldrons of jam I looked up some information about writing competitions that's come my way. Alors, you can sense the coming of autumn when you hear that the CBC Literary Awards competition is open already. The deadline this year is November 1st, 2006. Poets are advised to note that the word limits for poetry have been changed to between 1000 and 2000 words. A first prize of $6000 and a second prize of $4000 are awarded in each category, poetry, short story, and creative nonfiction. Winning texts are also published in enRoute magazine and broadcast on CBC Radio.

Well in advance of deadline, I visited the site of Poet's Letter to read about the Beowulf Poetry Competition, whose first prize is a staggering £10,000.00, and which gives you until July 31, 2007 to get your entries in. The theme for the 2006/07 Prize is Poetry of Cities (anything and everything about cities: living, growing up, working, falling in love, buildings, architecture, engineering, arts, culture, food, suffering, agonies and joys).

The July issue of Poet's Letter magazine features our very own Victorian, Yvonne Blomer, who had wandered off to England for year to earn her University of East Anglia MA.


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