2023 Ekphrasis Poetry Competition
IN COLLABORATION WITH THE CANE ROOTS ART GALLERY, THE USVI LIT FEST AND THE CARIBBEAN WRITER PRESENTS AN EKPHRASIS POETRY COMPETITION
“Ekphrasis” (also spelled “ecphrasis”), the practice of using words to comment on a piece of visual art is an ancient one. It should be no surprise, then, that the term ekphrasis derives from Greek, where it literally means “description” and was formed by combining the prefix ex- (“out”) with the verb “phrazein” (“to point out or explain”)..
Some early experiences leave such imprints on us that they often define our lives. In the same way, that even if the experience is vicarious—- not ours, personally, but that of a family member a friend or even a particular set of people or a community, they evoke a certain life shaping resolve or a level of social empathy that we carry with us in our writings, readings and outings. The VI Lit Fest’s 2023 theme, “Carrying: Recognition and Repair” is a reflection of that idea. The old mill set in the context of new growth providing support for the old burnt tree in Alexis Camarena’s painting is a metaphor for this “Carrying” experience. Covered with old and new life, we recognize that there is a certain beauty in this pairing and so we consider the promises of an appropriate repair.
Write a poem in response to the art work by Alexis Camarena featured on the VI Lit Fest 2023 poster or select a work of art featured at Cane Roots Art Gallery in Christiansted. Your response may be in free verse, or rhyme or prose— taking any shape you desire. Your submission should be on one page only. Also, please include your name, cell phone number and mailing address on the reverse side of the page.
A panel of 5 judges will review the submissions and select the four top submissions based on the following criteria:
Word choice and order are precise, colorful, and evocative, and create audible appeal.
Line length, line breaks, along with word choice and order, enhance the clarity, meaning, and movement of the poem.
The poem effectively explores or relates to the art work.
The poem as a whole captures or effectively implies a compelling story.
Figurative language creates rich or broad sensory appeal.
The poem evokes an emotional response from the reader.
The idea, perspective, or presentation is unique and fresh.
SUBMIT YOUR POEM IN THE FOLLOWING MANNER:
- Follow @usvilitfest on Facebook, @thecaribbeanwriter on Instagram, r/thecaribbeanwriter on Reddit, @usvilitfest on TikTok, or @thecaribbeanwri on Twitter.
Then submit your poems with #ekphrastic and a mention of one of the accounts listed above.
THE MORE LIKES YOU RECEIVE, THE GREATER CHANCES YOU HAVE OF WINNING ONE OF FOUR PRIZES.
- Submit your poem to firstname.lastname@example.org by April 12, 2023. Winners will be announced at our AfterWord poetry reading session at Cane Roots Art Gallery in Christiansted on April 15th during poetry readings from 4 to 6 pm. Write a poem and come to share—open mic. Seating is limited, so sign up early at Eventbrite.com
1st PRIZE $400.00
2nd PRIZE $300.00
3rd PRIZE $200.00
4th PRIZE $100.00