2018 Poetry

2018 Poetry Competition Longlist

Announced 1st October

Thank you to all who entered our inaugural poetry competition! Poems were of an impressively high standard and approached the theme from dramatically differing angles. Around 25% of poets were ‘local’ to Switzerland, and we had entries from across Europe, from the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Poem titles rather than poets are listed in order to preserve anonymity for our judge, as many people submitted more than one poem. Where two poems have the same title, we’ve included the first few words to identify the particular entry.

Congratulations to all longlisters!

Longlisted poems*, in alphabetical order, are:

  1. A Glass Bead Curtain
  2. A Snowflake Affair
  3. Cold cold
  4. Definitions of Snow
  5. Eskimo Soul
  6. Everything That Evaporates
  7. Falling Here
  8. First Glance
  9. Generation Snowflake
  10. Masterpieces
  11. Pure
  12. Snow Crabs
  13. Snowflake (I Know You …)
  14. Snowflake (Barely able …)
  15. Snowflakes (I so wish …)
  16. Successful Search
  17. Tom Thompson
  18. The Ascendancy of Snowflakes
  19. The Cold
  20. The Cramped Snowflake
  21. The Cycle of Life
  22. The Fall
  23. Walk on Snow
  24. White Out
  25. Winter’s Petal

Congratulations to you all!


The 2018 Poetry Competition is now closed.

Longlist will be announced on 1 October.
Shortlist will be announced on 1 November.
Winners will be announced on 1 December.


Our 2018 Inaugural Poetry Competition theme:

Every issue of The Woolf follows a theme. In December 2018 we’ll be interrogating the theme “Snowflake”.


  • 1st Prize – 150 CHF plus publication in the December 2018 issue of The Woolf
  • 2nd Prize – 100 CHF plus publication in the December 2018 issue of The Woolf
  • 3rd Prize – 50 CHF plus publication in the December 2018 issue of The Woolf

Closing Date

1st September 2018 (midnight CET).


A longlist will be publicly announced on 1st October 2018.


A shortlist will be publicly announced on 1st November 2018. Shortlistees will be notified in advance via email.


All three winning entries will be published in The Woolf December 2018 issue. All entrants will be notified in advance via email with the results.

Judge: Padraig Rooney

Born in Ireland, Padraig Rooney studied at Maynooth College and at the Sorbonne. His books include In The Bonsai Garden which won the Patrick Kavanagh Award for Poetry in 1986, The Escape Artist which won the Poetry Business Competition in 2005 and The Fever Wards, published by Salt in 2010. He won the Strokestown International Poetry Prize in 2009 and has been the recipient of two Irish Arts Council bursaries. He has taught abroad for many years and lives in Basel, Switzerland.

His poems and stories have appeared in Best Irish Short Stories 2 & 3 (Paul Elek, 1977, 1978), Phoenix Irish Short Stories (Phoenix, 1997), Scanning the Century: The Penguin Book of Poetry in the Twentieth Century (Penguin Viking, 1999), Haiku World: An International Poetry Almanac (Kodansha International, 1996), The Haiku Seasons (Kodansha International, 1996), The Backyards of Heaven: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry (2003), Dancing With Kitty Stobling: The Patrick Kavanagh Award Winners 1971-2003 (Lilliput Press, 2004) and Our Shared Japan: An Anthology of Contemporary Irish Poetry (Dedalus, 2007) and Best Irish Poetry in English 2010 (Southword editions, 2010).


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