Poetry Africa Calls for Submissions

To commemorate the 45th anniversary of the Soweto Uprising on June 16, the Centre for Creative Arts at the University of KwaZulu Natal invites young poets to submit their poems as part of their competition. The winning poet will win a prize of R3 000, have the winning poem included in the Poetry Africa anthology that will be published in celebration of the festival’s 25th year this year and be invited as one of the participants to perform at the 25th Poetry Africa Festival.

While Poetry Africa serves as an annual platform that celebrates Poetry, this competition is meant to support and elevate the young poetry community. The winners will be announced on 20 June 2021. The festival looks forward to offering this prize:

“Spoken word is a dynamic way to memorialise and celebrate our social history. We are confident that young poets will be inspired by the generation of 1976 and will also share some of their own aspirations about how to continue to build a fully transformed South African nation”, said Siphindile Hlongwa, the curator of the Poetry Africa Festival.

Participants can submit their videos on WhatsApp to 071 326 7272. The submitted video clips will be posted on the Poetry Africa Facebook page.


  • Submissions are open to poets between the ages of 14 and 35 years old that reside in South Africa;
  • Submissions are open to unpublished poems only;
  • Poems will be submitted in video format and limited to 2 minutes;
  • No more than two poems per submission;
  • Poems can be in any South African language;
  • Please include name, age, place and social media handles in your submission. Poetry Africa has the right to disqualify the submission if any of this information is missing;
  • The poems must honour the students of June 16;
  • The poem must express the poet’s dream for a better South Africa;
  • The poem with the most likes on the Poetry Africa Facebook page will receive the audience choice prize. Poetry Africa has the right to select which poems are published on the Facebook page.
  • The closing date is 16 June 2021 at 5pm.

First Prize: R3 000 + published in Poetry Africa anthology and performance at Poetry Africa 2020

Second Prize:                     R1 500

Audience Choice:              R1 000

For detailed rules: poetryafrica.ukzn.ac.za

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