Welcome to the Website ​of Portsmouth Poetry

Established in 2016 we are a non-profit body encouraging poets and poetry in the city with a reputation for community and educational projects.

To find your way around, click on the 'Home' button above and go to the 'Find your way around the website' page

What's New?

This Saturday

25th September 2021


Victoria Park      10 - 6


'Mixed Messages'


'Mixed Messages' is the latest (2021) collection of poems from Welsh poet, novelist and photographer Dave Lewis. Based in Pontypridd, Dave organises the prestigious annual International Welsh Poetry Competition and the Poetry Book Awards

Read our review of 'Mixed Messages' on the Review page then go and buy the book

Tom Pennacchini

From New York, Tom has sent us 14 new poems we're so excited about.

Check them out on our 'Our Poets' page

Joanna Lilley's 'Endlings' wins prestigious Fred Kerner Book Award

'Endlings' reviewed on our website last year has won the Canadian Authors Association's Fred Kerner Book Award. We could not be more proud that a poet we have supported has won this accolade. This marvellous, timely and moving collection is truly remarkable. If you haven't read it, do so!

The Portsmouth Poetry review of 'Endlings' can be found on our "Reviews" page and we still hope to run workshops and readings with Jo in the future 

Ports Fest 2021 Schools Poetry Competition


As part of Ports Fest 2021 we ran a poetry competition for schools in the city with prizes for the winning poems in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 and to the school with the over all winner. An additional prize was donated by Ports Fest to the winning school. The pupils were asked to base their poems on the themes of the festival 'Remember, Reimagine, Reset'. Following our unique commitment to encourage poets and poetry, all poems submitted were given feedback. The winning poems both came from Mayfield School in North End


                    Here are the two winners

WINNING POEM KS1 (age 5-6)

We really enjoyed this poem. She covered all three themes of Ports Fest 2021 in a remarkably creative and touching way. I am sure that Roald Dahl would have been impressed and delighted to see a that a girl of her age clearly loves his work! It was lovely to see that she recognises and values the work of her teachers and the inclusion of Elmer’s Glue really made us smile. What was most impressive was that she constructed an 'acrostic' a really clever and appropriate poetic vehicle and unexpected in one so young.

[An 'Acrostic' is a poem in which the first letter or the first word in each line when read downwards makes a statement]










My Family

Elmer’s Glue




Roald Dahl







I Love You




This poem covered the Ports Fest 2021 theme ‘remember’ in a remarkably creative and moving way taking it from memories, which would be the obvious approach to the theme, to statements about far more mature and important issues of morality and humanity. The result is a strong humanitarian poem.

The structure and ‘lay-out’ of the poem is also impressive using a sequence of quatrain stanzas each presenting a different and important human challenge. There are some fine lines of poetry in them such as “Remember the forgotten things/The things that people don’t boast”. The rhyme pattern is also very good, making the second and fourth line of each stanza rhyme and the rhyming is good and not clumsy as it can easily be.

Altogether, this is a lovely poem and impressive from one of her age and we are delighted  that it was both the winning poem for KS2 and the overall winner for the competition. 


Remember the important things,

The things that matter most,

Remember the forgotten things,

The things that people don’t boast.

Remember the brave soldiers,

The people who gave us their lives,

Remember the people who gave sacrifices,

For us to live and thrive.

Remember the refugees,

Who cry like a river,

Remember the homeless people,

Who people think are just a dirty feather.

Remember the poor families,

Who can barely afford food,

Remember the lonely people,

For whom sadness is their constant mood.

Remember that we can help these people,

And many, many more,

Remember that they are in need of your help,

Knocking at the door.

For child protection we have not given the names of these two young poets - but give them our sincere thanks for writing such lovely poems!

Away With Words Podcasts

Portsmouth Poetry's new Podcast venture 'Away With Words' has begun.....

Go to the 'Podcast' page for details of our podcasts and how to listen to them

Away With Words Podcasts are available from Buzzsprout