Prole Pamphlet Competition, 2017

The results


The Winner of our first pamphlet competition is Robert Nisbet with Robeson, Fitzgerald and Other Heroes. Many congratulations, Robert - a very worthy winner.

Robert wins £50 and 15 copies.

Robeson, Fitzgerald and Other Heroes will be published in November and available here on our website.


Thank you to all who entered. Your support helps us to continue with Prole.


Many thanks also to our judge, Fiona Pitt-Kethley, for her professional work.


Judge's comments


Judging the Prole pamphlet competition proved an enjoyable experience. The good thing about a pamphlet competition, rather than one for an odd poem, is that it sorts out the worst entrants. If you have at least a couple of dozen poems to present, you are beginning to be serious about the business of being a poet.


As I narrowed down my list, I felt that there were a dozen or so from decent poets who perhaps had other books or pamphlets out there, or at least a lot of magazine publications. Some sounded as if they were good performers too. In the end, I had to narrow this list even further to provide one actual winner. This wasn´t that easy as there were several I liked.


I had started off looking for a pamphlet with a central theme, as this is something I usually prefer. Some of those in the final list had this, others not. Robeson, Fitzgerald and Other Heroes only has a loose theme, but it held up to plenty of rereading so I chose that as the winner. I had the feeling of a good poet crafting poems well on a variety of subjects.


I liked People Pie, which, as the title suggests, has quite a cast of characters running through its poems. I especially liked the opening poem of the series.


I would also like to give a kind of special commendation to three others for staying very close to their chosen themes. Words from the Water, which has a very Welsh feel and concerns the flooding of valleys to make reservoirs. Lots of anger and sorrow there. Fowl, Wild and Water is a likeable collection of nature poems on birds. Last, but not least, The Sand Gathering Railway is a series of vignettes relating to the the Nazi occupation of Jersey. These are vividly imagined unless the writer is in his late 80s and was there at the time. Rather curious to know if this is the case.


I had to make a choice...but I also hope that all these writers get a pamphlet out from one or other press soon. In the case of the two shortest of the above, another poem or several would make the work even better.



Robeson, Fitzgerald and Other Heroes - Robert Nisbet


People Pie - John Ling

Words from the Water - Ellen Davies

Fowl, Wild and Water - Marc Woodward

The Sand Gathering Railway - Alice Allen

Our judge was the excellent Fiona Pitt-Kethley. Fiona is the author of more than 20 books of prose and poetry. She lives in Spain with her family and an adopted colony of feral cats. She is currently writing prose and poetry books on the area. Her hobbies are mineral-collecting, fishing, hillwalking, snorkelling and playing the cajon.

All entries were judged anonymously.

Copyright Prolebooks 2017