Poetry Competition 2018

Every year The Life of Words hosts a poetry competition, open to anyone attending an Ontario Secondary School. On this page you can find news about the 2018 competition, including our competition flyer (below) and, eventually, our anthology of winners.

28 April 2018. COMPETITION CLOSED!

We’ve received loads of entries from all over Ontario. Thanks to all the students who submitted a poem, and all the teachers who guided them. Look for results to be posted here before the end of May.

23 April 2018. DEADLINE APPROACHING!

It is the final week of TLOW 2018, and submissions have been flowing in. Only a few more days remain until the competition closes, this FRIDAY, at midnight. Just enough time to find that elusive rhyme, and proofread for tpye-os and misplaced apostrophe’s.

23 March 2018. Pro Tip.

Here’s a tip for how to think about the competition theme, “write a poem about some aspect of the meaning of a word.” At The Life of Words, we care about meaning, but we mainly care about words.

That’s where your focus should be too. For example, if you intend to write about, say, “loneliness”, you should be writing about the word “loneliness”, not (just) the concept or experience of loneliness. You might think about how the word “one” sits right there in the middle of “lonely”. You might think about the two tall “l”s that look a lot like two tall “I”s. Ideally, in addition to merely referring to something, the word itself would end up embodying it or exemplifying it in some way. At TLOW, we’re interested in that relationship above all.

Here’s an amazing poem by e. e. cummings that is both about loneliness and about “loneliness”:

 l(a
 le
 af
 fa
 ll
 s)
 one
 l
 iness

That’s it. Is your mind blown? If not, spend another half-hour with it, figure out how it works, then go back to thinking about what “the meaning of a word” might mean!

13 March 2018. The Life of Words 2018 Competition Flyer Released

Here’s all you need to know about this year’s competition, plus some tips and resources to get you started on your poem. [You can download a high-quality PDF of this flyer to view or print here].

[You can download a high-quality PDF of this flyer to view or print here]