Sunday, March 18, 2012

Call for Female Poets: 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project (Australia/ NZ)

Post date: Sunday, March 18, 2012
Deadline: 11 November 2012

To Australian and New Zealand female poets – the proposition is: - Behind every war there are good women.

Interpretation is up to you, the writer, but the principal aim of this exhibition is to present a diversity of views, ideas and perspectives from women about women and the commemorations and anniversaries of Australia’s and New Zealand’s military conflicts together with the emotions these evoke. To achieve this, a diversity of poets is required; from those well known in the literary world to others whose poetry may only be known to family and friends.

Conflicts range from New Zealand’s Maori Wars in the 1840s and 1860s to today’s in Afghanistan with the centenary of the landing in Turkey of forces from the British Empire occurring in 2015. The emphasis of the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project is not on these military events per se. The emphasis is on the commemorations or anniversaries of such events, the emotions these evoke and the part they play in today’s society. Just as important, the times between conflicts can be considered.

Generally views, ideas and perspectives will be supportive, hostile or of indifference. Others will question the relevance of such events to their lives, their families, their community or their nation.

Tasmanian poet, Brittany Legg, in her poem Buying the Biscuits, provided below, gives quite a different viewpoint on the commemoration of ANZAC Day.

Women have undertaken and do undertake many different roles and activities in theatres of war, in support or on home fronts; before, during and after conflicts. These activities and roles of women, both in military activities and their commemorations, have changed over time. Do such changes reflect changes in or cause changes in broader society?

Interpretation may be general:
  • How do military commemorations and anniversaries reflect or are reflected in the thoughts of today’s women?
  • What are thoughts and feelings of the women who now go off to military conflicts, leaving family and friends?
  • What thoughts do Australian and New Zealand women give to women who lived or are living in the many countries where Australian and New Zealander military forces have fought or are fighting?
  • What of the women who were ‘allowed out of the kitchen’ during times of conflict to farm the land or work in or run factories or businesses? What of the attempts to shove them back into the ‘kitchen’ as conflict’s end?

Interpretation may be specific:
  • What were the thoughts of Fleurine Andrews from Ma Ma Creek, Queensland on hearing that her son, 26 year old James, was killed in action in 1916, then 28 year old George in 1917 and finally 20 year old Bertie in 1918?
  • What of Ella Wilcox’s 1915 poem War Mothers about unmarried mothers in England? Her poem is introduced with the following words: - In the months of May and June twenty thousand children were born to unmarried mothers living near camps in England alone. How were Australian and New Zealand ‘war mothers’ treated?
  • Who were the women who settled the Tullakool Soldier Settlement in New South Wales at the end of the 1940s? What was life like for the women of the Kadnook Soldier Settlement, Victoria, settled in March, 1960s?

The proposition is Behind every war there are good women. Its interpretation is up to you, the writer.

Please send your poems to:

100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project
P O Box 170
Tasmania Australia 7304

Poems will be accepted up till Remembrance Day 2012.

The Exhibition will commence in 2013 and consist of 20 items, feature new works by 20-24 writers from Australia and New Zealand. Subject to the number of submissions, there will be 2-3 poems from each Australian state, Northern Territory and New Zealand. Poems for the exhibition will be chosen by a small group of female poets and readers.

Each item will have a poem, photograph and small location map in an A3 format (297x420mm without frame). This allows up to two-thirds of print area to be allocated to the poem. Some items, depending upon poem length, will contain 2 poems. Brittany Legg’s Buying the Biscuits shows the layout.

Please note that all materials included in the exhibition will promote the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project.

While copyright of all submitted poems resides with the poet, the poet agrees to her poem being used by the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry project of which this exhibition is a part and, if selected, being used for the Exhibition. This includes placing poems, if selected, in the exhibition format, on the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project section of website.

Unless stated by the poet, all poems received will be considered as submissions to the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project and will be considered for inclusion in its publication.

If desired, poets may enter their poems in the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Prize.

While the Behind every war there are good women Exhibition will feature new poems, writers are invited to submitted old and new poems on related topics to the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project.

Submitted poems, together with material, both old and new, from the 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project, its Prize and other exhibitions will be offered to the National Libraries of Australia and New Zealand as well as Australia’s Jessie Street National Women’s Library.


For submissions: 100 Years from Gallipoli Poetry Project, P O Box 170, Deloraine, Tasmania Australia 7304