Bards in the Bog Poetry Competition

According to The Scotsman, Shetland Library seeks promising poetic talent in its latest round of the Bards in the Bog poetry competition, but the winning poems won’t appear where you might expect. Their publication will come in the form of displays in public restrooms of the Northern Isle.┬áIn addition to the toilet displays, poems will also appear “in shop windows on Commercial Street in January.”

Shetland poet and winner of the T.S. Eliot prize for poetry, Jen Hadfield created the Bard in the Bog poetry contest in 2009. This year marks the seventh competition. Bards in the Bog partnered with the Shetland Library to promote the “Year of the Dialect,” and the competition requires that all entries be in Shetland dialect. The goal, according to a library spokesperson, is to “encourage enjoyment of poetry, promote local culture and dialect and reach out to people who might not otherwise visit the Library.”

The contest’s guidelines are as follows: “Poems should be no more than 14 lines in length, be in Shetland dialect or incorporate the dialect, and be original and unpublished. The closing date for submissions is 14 December.”


–Melinda Wilson