Tony Walsh poem with Chris Riddell illustrations helps launch YouTube competition

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A moving and inspirational poem by leading spoken word poet Tony Walsh, ‘Take This Pen’, with wonderful illustrations by artist Chris Riddell, is helping to promote a new YouTube competition to mark National Poetry Day. 

The organisers of National Poetry Day have launched a YouTube competition called #SpeakYourTruth. The prize is £500 and a day at London’s YouTube Space where you’ll pick up essential tips on reaching audiences.

The task to write a new poem on National Poetry Day’s theme of Truth. For inspiration, you can check out the YouTube films by the five judges: Savannah Brown, Nikita Gill , footballer/poet Marvin Sordell, Chris Riddell and Tony Walsh, whose poem ‘This is the Place’, publicised worldwide after the Manchester bombing in 2017, has had more than four million views on YouTube.

Speak your poem straight to camera: the poem itself should be no longer than 90 seconds. Start off by introducing yourself – who you are and why you’ve turned to poetry to share a truth that matters to you. The whole film should be less than two minutes long. A maximum of three entries per person.

Upload your poem to YouTube and tag the title #SpeakYourTruthPoem, by 3 October. Please include the text of the poem in the information below the film, and tell us how you want to be contacted by National Poetry Day if you are shortlisted. 

You can watch ‘Take This Pen’ by Tony Walsh, from his book Sex & Love & Rock&Roll here

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