Christmas Stories:
Postcard Poem Competition

See your poem on a limited edition festive postcard! We’re looking for brand new poems on the theme of ‘Christmas Stories’ for a special Christmas postcard that we’ll be supplying to book and gift shops across the UK. As well as a set of your own poem postcards, you’ll win £75 and hot-off-the-press copies of this year’s festive titles.


Submissions close midnight Thursday 30th June 2022.


In order to fit onto the front of an A6 postcard, poems must be no longer than 16 lines, including title and stanza breaks, with no more than 10 words per line. Your poem must be in English. It must also be new, unpublished, and not currently submitted elsewhere.


It’s free to enter and there’s a maximum of one poem per poet. Email your poem as a Word doc or PDF file to with your poem’s title and your own name as the file name.


The winner will have their poem published as an A6 postcard which will be given away with copies of our 2022 festive pamphlets. They’ll win £75 and receive a set of 20 of their postcards, plus five copies of each of our new festive titles.


Christmas Stories! Your interpretation of the theme can be as broad as you wish but the link must be clear. And it certainly doesn’t have to be Christian – or even religious.


Entries will be judged by the Candlestick editorial team (Di Slaney and Kathy Towers). The judges’ decision is final, and no correspondence will be entered into. The winner will be notified by email by 31st July and announced via social media on or before 22nd August.

Good luck! We look forward to reading your entries.

Previous competition winners

Christmas Together Competition


‘The Carol of the Stable’
Bill Adair

‘Born This Happy Morning’
Christina Buckton

‘Christmas Dinner’
Corinna Keefe

‘Boxing Day at My Grandparents’ House’
Jeanette Burton

‘Playing Love Hangover While Washing Up’
Robert Hamberger

Getting Older Poem Competition


Alasdair Paterson

Elvire Roberts

Mark Granier

Commended Poets

Cheryl Pearson
Clint King

Jacquie Shanahan
Marianne Jones

Tina Cole

Shortlisted Poets

Akwe Amosu
Alison Campbell
Anya Trofimova
Ben Wilkinson
Bernie Crawford
Bob Cooper
Christine Macfarlane
Consuelo Marshall
DA Prince

Darrell Hugueley
Deborah Harvey
Fiona Ritchie Walker
Gita Ralleigh
James Heaney
Jeffa Kay
Jill Sharp
Jo Field
Julian Turner

Massey Armistead
Michael Ray
Olga Dermott-Bond
Pamela Butler
Robert Hamberger
Sarah Grout
Stephen Keeler
Vanessa Lampert
Vic Pickup

Snow Poem Competition


‘Snow Day’
Lucy Jeynes

‘for the love of snow’
Joanne Key

‘The Symmetry of Snow’
Meda AA Stamper

Highly commended poets

Kerry Darbishire

Gill McEvoy

Jill Munro

Shortlisted poets

Jeanette Burton
Pat Childerhouse
John Foggin
Rhiannon Hooson
Christopher James

Claire Lynn
Beliz McKenzie
Hilary Robinson
Tom Sastry
Hannah Stone

Polly Walshe
Nicola Warwick
Sarah Ziman

Breakfast Poem Competition


Olga Dermott-Bond

‘Breakfast with Mother’
Catherine Edmunds

‘Before the Lark’
Phil M Houghton

Shortlisted poets

Jeanette Burton
Pat Childerhouse
Christopher James
John Foggin

Rhiannon Hooson
Claire Lynn
Hilary Robinson
Tom Sastry

Hannah Stone
Polly Walshe
Nicola Warwick
Sarah Ziman

Cloud Poem Competition

First Prize

‘Hazy, Massed, Dappled’
Lesley Saunders

Second Prize

Sarah Westcott

Highly Commended

‘Cloud Break’
Michael Brown

‘Musings on Board Spacecraft Oasis 1’
Jeanette Burton

Miriam Calleja

‘Nudging Clouds’
Shirley Anne Cook

‘Clouding Over’
Jonathan Davidson

‘Cloud Souls’
Louise Greig

‘Cloud Content’
Caroline Hammond

‘The Cloud Collector’
Christopher James

Micropoem competition

First Prize

Roz Goddard


Maria Taylor

Matthew Paul

Plus five additional runner-up prizes of a copy of The Twelve Poems of Christmas (Volume Seven) to

Jeanette Burton

Karen Jane Cannon

Polly Atkin

Maree Jaeger

Stephen Daniels

"...a thoughtful stand-in for a card."The Guardian
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